“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Campbellsville in Taylor County, Kentucky — The American South (East South Central)

First Taylor County Courthouse


First Taylor County Courthouse Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Tom Bosse, October 13, 2016
1. First Taylor County Courthouse Marker
Inscription.  The first courthouse was a brick building constructed in 1848, the year the county separated from Green County. It was larger than the second courthouse and was located in the center of the square.

During the Civil War, Federal troops slept inside on its floor and used it as a hospital and to store supplies. Both Federal and Rebel soldiers camped on the grounds of the Court House Square.

"We were quartered in the Campbellsville Court House and after early candle lighting, a large number of citizens being assembled Mr. Joseph Chandler (state representative) addressed the assembly upon the present state of national affairs...I did not enjoy a very good night's rest in consequence of having to lie on the brick floor and not having a sufficiency of blankets to keep me out of absorbing distance of the bricks."
-Pvt. Marcus Woodcock

Gen. George Thomas' Troops marched through Campbellsville
January 1, 1862

In January 1862, two brigades of Brig. General George Thomas' men numbering at least 5,000, marched from Lebanon through Campbellsville on their way to Mill Springs near Somerset where they
First Taylor County Courthouse Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Tom Bosse, October 13, 2016
2. First Taylor County Courthouse Marker
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defeated Rebel General Felix Zollicoffer's troops. the commanders of the two Federal brigades were Col. Mahlon Manson and Col. Robert McCook. Both Manson and McCook were later promoted to general.

General John Hunt Morgan and his raiders

Confederate General John Hunt Morgan's rebel force came through Campbellsville twice during the Civil War. On the Christmas Raid in 1862, Morgan had 3,900 troops headed south, returning to Tennessee. On the Great Raid in July 1863, Morgan commanded 2,500 troops headed north to Indiana and Ohio.

On these dashes through Campbellsville, Morgan's troops robbed cribs to feed their horses and devoured a large amount of food from peoples' kitchens and meat houses. From cobblers and saddle shops, leather was taken for shoes and harness. Horses were taken from stables. However, on occasion, the Rebels left worn out horses in their place. But, on neither raid, did Morgan set fire to the Taylor County Courthouse. However, another Confederate general did.

Morgan's men burned the Green River Bridge and Stockade on the Christmas Raid January 1, 1863. Six months later, on Morgan;s Great Raid, his troops returned and engaged Federal soldiers in the Battle of Tebbs Bend - Green River Bridge on July 4, 1863 here in Taylor County.

Gen. Hylan B. Lyon's 800-mile Confederate Raid
First Taylor County Courthouse Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Tom Bosse, October 13, 2016
3. First Taylor County Courthouse Marker
Marker located to the left of the mural.
9, 1864 - January 3, 1865

General Lyon's troops had already set five courthouses on fire before they reached Campbellsville. His forces left their Hodgenville camp on a cold Christmas morning in 1864 and came to Campbellsville with about 250 men and one piece of artillery. Lyon, known as the "Courthouse Burnin'est General in Kentucky." found that the courthouse was service as a Federal depot for quartermaster and commissary stores.

After allowing three women and a little boy, J.R. "June" Smith, to enter the building to remove the records, Lyon ordered his men to torch the structure. Rebel soldiers surrounded the courthouse until it burned to the ground.

During the time there was no court building, court was held in the Campbellsville Baptist Church, then a white frame building, located across the street from the courthouse at 205 North Columbia. later, court was moved to the County and Circuit Clerks' Office building on the Courthouse Square after their building was completed in 1866.
Erected by Campbellsville Renaissance.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil.
Location. 37° 20.483′ N, 85° 20.717′ W. Marker is in Campbellsville, Kentucky, in Taylor County. Marker is at the intersection
Campbellsville Mural image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Tom Bosse, October 13, 2016
4. Campbellsville Mural
of East Broadway (U.S. 68) and North Columbia Avenue, on the right when traveling east on East Broadway. This marker, along with several others, is located in a park adjacent to the Taylor County Courthouse. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 204 N Columbia Ave, Campbellsville KY 42718, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Campbellsville / Taylor County (here, next to this marker); Cumberland Trace (here, next to this marker); Confederate Raids (here, next to this marker); Courthouse Burned (here, next to this marker); Brig. Gen. Elias Barbee (here, next to this marker); Second Taylor County Courthouse - 1867 (here, next to this marker); Campbell Memorial (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Andrew Campbell (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Campbellsville.
Credits. This page was last revised on October 23, 2022. It was originally submitted on October 30, 2016, by Tom Bosse of Jefferson City, Tennessee. This page has been viewed 265 times since then and 54 times this year. Last updated on October 22, 2022, by Carl Gordon Moore Jr. of North East, Maryland. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on October 30, 2016, by Tom Bosse of Jefferson City, Tennessee. • Mark Hilton was the editor who published this page.

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Dec. 9, 2022