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Civil War Trails

Take to the Trails

Tennessee Civil War


Below is the text of the Civil War marker located at Clay County Museum, 145 Cordell Hull Dr., Celina, TN 38551

Celina During the Civil War

During the Civil War, the residents of the eastern and Cumberland River sections of present-day Clay County (then part of Jackson and Overton Counties) were usually Confederate sympathizers, while those in the western section supported the Union. Men from this area enlisted in both armies. Oliver P. Hamilton organized one of the first local Confederate regiments in December 1862. He was elected major (and later became lieutenant colonel) of Hamilton’s Tennessee Cavalry Battalion. This partisan ranger band made its headquarters at Celina. Hamilton’s men patrolled the Tennessee-Kentucky line, enforced the conscript law and guarded army stock and supplies between Celina and Gainsborough.


Below is the text of a marker located at 805 Brown Street, Celina, TN 38551


Donaldson Cemetery: A Cavalryman’s Resting Place

Capt. Jacob C. “Jake” Bennett, a native Kentuckian and noted Confederate partisan ranger, is buried in Donaldson Cemetery. During the war, bushwhackers and guerrillas on both sides raided the sparsely populated borderlands of Tennessee and Kentucky. Confederate partisans clashed frequently with Federal soldiers and Unionists, and Bennett was among the more daring guerrillas. Captured at Fort Donelson in February 1862 and imprisoned, Bennett escaped and joined Confederate Col. Adam R. “Stovepipe” Johnson’s 10th Kentucky Partisan Rangers, which became part of Gen. John Hunt Morgan’s cavalry division.

Note: He is pictured to the right.

“Civil War Trails” brochures, which include Tennessee Civil War history and maps, are available at the Clay County Chamber of Commerce, located at 424 Brown St. in Celina. The map can be downloaded HERE.

For more information about Tennessee Trails, call (615) 532-7520 or visit the state’s Tennessee Civil War Trails website.

For a more detailed account of activities in Celina and Clay County, click HERE.