“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Celina in Clay County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)

Donaldson Cemetery

A Cavalryman’s Resting Place

Donaldson Cemetery Marker image. Click for full size.
By Karen Emerson-McPeak, November 14, 2017
1. Donaldson Cemetery Marker
Inscription.  Capt. Jacob C. “Jake” Bennett, a native Kentuckian and noted Confederate partisan ranger, is buried in Donaldson Cemetery (four miles north of here). 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. Less than two months later, most of this force were captured and imprisoned in Ohio. On November 28, 1863, Morgan, Bennett, and five other officers tunneled out and escaped.

Bennett formed an independent company based in Overton (now Clay) County, Tennessee, and raided towns in western Kentucky, including Owensboro, where he burned a boatload of Federal supplies guarded by a company of United States Colored Troops. Bennett finally surrendered in Carthage, Tennessee, laying down
Donaldson Cemetery Marker image. Click for full size.
By Karen Emerson-McPeak, November 14, 2017
2. Donaldson Cemetery Marker
“everything but his memories.” He was elected the second sheriff of the newly-formed Clay County and was working as guard at the Nashville prison when he died in 1904.

At Donaldson Cemetery, Bennett’s grave, with a four-sided stone marker, is located in the middle row. Other Confederates buried in the cemetery include C.E. Dale and W.P. Overstreet, 4th Tennessee Cavalry; 25th Tennessee Infantry; and W.S. Davis, Robert D. Donaldson, John R. Donaldson, and Samuel Wells, 28th Tennessee Infantry.

“Jake, afoot, seemed a great, overgrown, awkward country youth, but on horseback, his seat was firm, and he had the air of the true cavalryman.”
—Confederate Maj. William J. Davis, adjutant general, Morgan’s Division

(left) Jacob C. Bennett, tintype Courtesy Marcello Moore

(center) Col. Adam R. “Stovepipe” Johnson Courtesy Library of Congress

(right) Capt. Jacob C. “Jake” Bennett, from Adam R,. Johnson, The Partisan Rangers of the Confederate States Army (1904)
Erected by Tennessee Civil War Trails.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Cemeteries & Burial SitesWar, US Civil
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. In addition, it is included in the Tennessee Civil War Trails series list.
Location. 36° 32.646′ N, 85° 30.221′ W. Marker is in Celina, Tennessee, in Clay County. Marker is on Brown Street (Tennessee Route 52) 0.1 miles west of Tennessee Route 53. Located at the Clay County Museum. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 805 Brown St, Celina TN 38551, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 11 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. History of the Webb Cemetery (a few steps from this marker); Celina During the Civil War (approx. half a mile away); Free Hill(s) Community (approx. 1.7 miles away); Dale Hollow Dam (approx. 2.9 miles away); Butler's Landing / Bailey Butler (approx. 4.8 miles away); John Hunt Morgan (approx. 9.9 miles away); Fisk Female Academy (approx. 10.1 miles away); McMillian's Landing (approx. 10½ miles away in Kentucky). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Celina.
Credits. This page was last revised on January 3, 2018. It was originally submitted on January 2, 2018, by Karen Emerson-McPeak of Triune, Tennessee. This page has been viewed 180 times since then and 26 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on January 2, 2018, by Karen Emerson-McPeak of Triune, Tennessee. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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Jul. 7, 2020