Donaldson Cemetery

Donaldson Cemetery (HM24BS)

Location: Celina, TN 38551 Clay County
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Country: United States of America
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N 36° 32.646', W 85° 30.221'

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A Cavalryman's Resting Place

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 "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.


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)
HM NumberHM24BS
Series This marker is part of the Tennessee: Tennessee Civil War Trails series
Placed ByTennessee Civil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Wednesday, January 3rd, 2018 at 1:03pm PST -08:00
Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)16S E 633931 N 4045341
Decimal Degrees36.54410000, -85.50368333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 36° 32.646', W 85° 30.221'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds36° 32' 38.76" N, 85° 30' 13.26" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)931
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 805 Brown St, Celina TN 38551, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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