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Marion in Crittenden County, Kentucky — The American South (East South Central)
 

Crittenden County Courthouse, Marion

 
 
Crittenden County Courthouse, Marion Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 7, 2012
1. Crittenden County Courthouse, Marion Marker
Inscription.
According to local tradition, the Crittenden County Courthouse was burned by Brigadier General Hylan B. Lyon, CSA on January 25, 1865 as part of a raid into Kentucky during which Lyon’s troops burned a number of western Kentucky county courthouses. The courthouse had been built in 1844 when the county seat was transferred to Marion. The present courthouse is the third, dedicated in 1951.

During the Civil War there was relatively little action in Crittenden County, although the county had several iron furnaces and a large fluorspar mine. There was one other incident at the courthouse. On May 13, 1862, Col. S. Noble, Federal commander at Paducah, sent a cavalry company under a Capt. Stacy to Marion. Stacy interrupted the circuit court and demanded that the presiding judge, Wiley P. Flower, and others take the oath of allegiance to the Federal government. The judge and the others protested that they had taken all the oaths required under state law. Four men were arrested for refusing to take the oath and ordered to appear in the Paducah Circuit Court.

Hylan Benton Lyon was born in Caldwell (now Lyon) County on February 22, 1836. His grandfather, Matthew, served in the state legislature and U.S. House of Representatives; as did his father, Chittenden, for whom Lyon County was named. Hylan was orphaned at an early
Crittenden County Courthouse (<i>south side</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 7, 2012
2. Crittenden County Courthouse (south side)

South side of Crittenden County Courthouse, (Carlisle Street view) showing this marker (left) and nearby "Courthouse Burned" marker (right).
age, but inherited a sizeable estate, and was raised in Eddyville by F.H. Skinner. He attended Masonic University in LaGrange and was appointed to West Point in 1852. He graduated with the class of 1856 and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant. He served in Florida and, after promotion to First Lieutenant, In California and the Washington Territory. He resigned his commission and joined the Confederate Army as a first lieutenant in Cobb’s Battery in April 1861. He was soon promoted to Lt. Colonel with the 8th Kentucky Infantry and was captured after the fall of Fort Donelson. He was held at Johnson’s Island, Ohio before his exchange in September 1862. He returned to active service and participated in the defense of Vicksburg and fought the battles of Chattanooga and Brice’s Crossroads before his promotion to Brigadier General in June 1864. He served in the Franklin and Nashville campaigns and was active in western Kentucky attacking Federal supply lines, gathering supplies, and burning courthouses. His rationale for burning courthouses was that they were frequently used by Union forces.

He went to Mexico at the end of the War for one year, but returned to Lyon County and farmed for the rest of his life. He served on the state Penitentiary Commission and the state maximum security prison in Eddyville was built on his land. He served in the state legislature 1899-1900.
Map of Kentucky Courthouses Burned During Civil War image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 7, 2012
3. Map of Kentucky Courthouses Burned During Civil War

Back side of nearby "Courthouse Burned" marker shows map of 22 Kentucky courthouses burned during the Civil War, including the original Crittenden County Courthouse here in Marion.
Hylan B. Lyon died on April 25, 1907 and is buried in the Eddyville Cemetery.
 
Erected by Forrest C. Pogue Public History Institute, Murray State University and the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, TEA-21 Program.
 
Location. 37° 19.948′ N, 88° 4.908′ W. Marker is in Marion, Kentucky, in Crittenden County. Touch for map. Marker is located on the lawn, near the east courthouse entrance. Marker is in this post office area: Marion KY 42064, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 2 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Courthouse Burned (here, next to this marker); County Named, 1842 (within shouting distance of this marker).
 
More about this marker. This marker is a modern, plastic, nearly horizontal placard.
 
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Kentucky courthouses burned during the Civil War.
 
Also see . . .
1. Hylan B. Lyon Papers.
In December of 1864 CSA Brigadier General Hylan B. Lyon launched a raid into the Cumberland Valley of Tennessee and Kentucky. For several weeks Lyon disrupted supply lines and torched Union controlled buildings, including seven courthouses in Kentucky. (Submitted on November 26, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Brigadier General Hylan B Lyon, CSA image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 7, 2012
4. Brigadier General Hylan B Lyon, CSA
 

2. Hylan B. Lyon.
When the war ended, Lyon accompanied Governor Isham G. Harris of Tennessee into Mexico, intending to offer his services to Maximilian. He was a civil engineer in Mexico for nearly a year before finally returning to his home in Eddyville, Kentucky, where he resumed farming and opened a prosperous mercantile business. He also served as state prison commissioner, primarily responsible for what is now the Kentucky State Penitentiary being located in his hometown of Eddyville. His initials are still inscribed over the Kentucky State Penitentiary's front gate. (Submitted on November 26, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. Patriots & PatriotismPoliticsWar, US Civil
 
Crittenden County Courthouse (<i>southwest corner</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 7, 2012
5. Crittenden County Courthouse (southwest corner)

View from southwest corner showing this marker.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 26, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 454 times since then and 73 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on November 26, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.   4, 5. submitted on November 27, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Al Wolf was the editor who published this page.
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