Civil War Sites Driving Tour

Troops were recruited by both sides during the war. After the war, veterans returned home to resume their lives and many were buried in the many cemeteries in the county.

Calhoun, Calhoun Cemetery.

Many Union and Confederate soldiers are buried in this cemetery, including four African-Americans who served in the Union Army. Sacramento, Methodist Cemetery.

George Mayes, one of the Union soldiers killed in the Battle of Sacramento, is buried here as is Molly Morehead, the young woman who warned Nathan Bedford Forrest that Union troops were at Sacramento immediately before the battle.

Island, Baptist Cemetery.

Many Union and Confederate veterans from the Island are buried in the Island community's cemeteries. Most notable is Col. Absalom Redmond Shacklett, CSA, the highest ranking officer buried in the county, who rests in the Baptist Cemetery. Shacklett was born December 7, 1826 in Meade County, KY. He served in Company A, First United States Volunteer Rifle Infantry during the Mexican War and was wounded at Molino-Del-Rey. In 1859 he and his family settled in McLean County. He enlisted in Company H, Eighth Kentucky Infantry, CSA on October 13, 1861 and in November was elected its captain. He fought at Fort Donelson and was among those captured. After seven months at the Johnson's Island prison camp he was exchanged and fought at Corinth, Mississippi. In September 1862 he was promoted to Lt. Colonel. In February 1864 his regiment was mounted and served with Nathan Bedford Forrest for the remainder of the War. In July 1864 he was promoted to Colonel. When he surrendered with Forrest at the end of the War he broke his sword rather than surrender it. After the War he returned to McLean County, serving two years in the legislature and four years as postmaster of Island. He died on August 27, 1910.

Livermore, Hackett Cemetery.

Few places remind us more powerfully of the divisive nature of the Civil War among families in Kentucky than the Hackett Cemetery in Livermore. Member of the Hackett Family served on both sides during the War, including: Solomon Hackett who enlisted as a fifty-two year old private in September of 1862 and served first in Company E, First Kentucky Cavalry (CSA) and later in White's Battery; Colonel Rowland Eaton Hackett, who served in the Twenty-Sixth Kentucky Infantry (USA) and was wounded leading a decisive charge at the Battle of Nashville. The twenty-sixth was raised in McLean County and fought with distinction at Shiloh and Perryville as well as at Nashville; and Rufus Hackett, who served as a corporal in the Union Army. Eight other Civil War veterans are buried in the Hackett Cemetery and another eight in other Livermore area cemeteries - Crow Cemetery on Sandhill Road and the Oak Hill Cemetery. Livermore also has a number of buildings in its business district from the years following the Civil War that are excellent examples of the commercial architecture of the period.

Pleasant Hill Methodist Church Cemetery.

One of the most notable Confederate units raised in the Green River area was the Orphan Brigade, which saw service in many battles until the end of the war and sustained heavy casualties. One of the survivors of this group, Stephen W. Rowan is buried here. His tombstone briefly summarizes his long service to the Confederate cause. Rowan was born July 7, 1838 and enlisted in September 1861. He fought at Shiloh, Vicksburg, Murfreesboro, and Chickamauga as well as in the campaign between Dalton and Atlanta as Confederate troops tried to stop Sherman's march through Georgia. He was discharged at the end of the War with the rank of Sergeant, Company C, Ninth Kentucky, and returned to Livermore. He farmed until 1873 when he established himself as a merchant in Livermore. He died August 8, 1910.

Battle of Panther Creek.

On September 19, 1862 Union troops stationed at the Old Fair Grounds in Daviess County refused the demand for their surrender by Confederate troops based in Owensboro. A Union soldier swam across the Ohio River for assistance from the Indian Legion. Confederate forces had retired to this area where the Indiana Legion attacked and forced them to retreat. KY Historical Society Marker 745. On US 431 approximately 8 miles north of the county line.

Pleasant Hope.

In July 1864 Company D, Thirty-Fifth Kentucky Mounted Infantry camped near here while protecting the area between the Cumberland and Green River. Company D was recruited in McLean County and included many local men. They later fought at Grubb's Cross Roads and Saltville, Virginia. The unit was mustered out at Louisville on December 29, 1864. The house to the north is an antebellum farm house and the landscape here is representative of the landscape of McLean County during the Civil War. Eleven Civil War veterans, both Union and Confederate, are buried in nearby Pleasant Hope General Baptist Cemetery. KY Historical Marker 830.

Bethel Baptist Cemetery.

Seven veterans from both the Union and Confederate armies are buried here. Of particular interest is the tombstone of Jesse R. Henson, who carved it himself and which includes a brief description of his service in the War.

Beech Grove.

Many Civil War veterans are buried in the Beech Grove area, many in family cemeteries. Details can be found in Edith L. Bennett and Eldon Ray Eaton, Our Own USA CSA McLean County, Kentucky (Fordsville, KY: Wendell Sandefur Printing for the McLean County Historical Society, 1995).

Beech Grove, Home of Sue Mundy.

Jerome Clark (later known as Sue Mundy) was among the more well-known and feared guerrillas operating in West Kentucky during the Civil War. He was born in Franklin in Simpson County about 1845. His family moved to McLean County around 1858 and he lived with the Patterson family here. He and his best friend, John L. Patterson, enlisted in the Confederate army when the war began. They were captured at Fort Donelson and sent to Camp Morton, Indiana. They escaped from the prison camp and joined Adam Johnson's cavalry company, successfully raiding Newburg, Indiana and capturing 300 federal troops, whom they paroled. Clark, Patterson, and a few others from this area came home on a brief leave soon thereafter. Near Slaughtersville, they encountered Union troops, some of whom they had paroled rather than send to prison camps after their victory. Patterson was overwhelmed and after he surrendered shot through the head at close range and the thrown over a fence for dead. He somehow survived, but lost both eyes from the bullet. Clark was so outraged by the treatment of his friend by men they had shown kindness to just a few days earlier that he vowed to never take a prisoner again. He left Johnson's command because he did not intend to follow the rules of war any longer and fought as a guerrilla showing no mercy those he encountered and stirring fear in the hearts of federal soldiers. He became known as Sue Mundy. He was captured near the end of the War, tried by a military court in Louisville, and executed in 1865.

Camp Calhoun, Near Second St. and Poplar, Calhoun.

In November 1861 10,000 Union troops most from Kentucky, Indiana, and Ohio were sent to Calhoun to protect Lock and Dam Number 2 and the Green River. Commanded by General Thomas L. Crittenden, of the prominent Kentucky family, they remained in the area until February 1862 when the moved south as the active war moved south toward Vicksburg.
KY Historical Society Marker 665.