Confederate Guerrilla Sue Mundy

A Biography of Kentucky Soldier Jerome Clarke


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About the Book

In 1864, George D. Prentice, editor of the pro–Union Louisville Daily Journal, created the persona of Sue Mundy, a Civil War guerrilla who was in actuality a young man named Marcellus Jerome Clarke. This volume offers an in-depth, historically accurate account of Clarke’s exploits in Kentucky during the Civil War. The work begins with a summary of Kentucky’s prewar position: primarily pro–Union yet decidedly anti–Lincoln. The author then discusses the ways in which this paradox gave rise to the guerrilla threat that terrorized Kentuckians during the final years of the war. Special emphasis is placed on previously unknown facts, names and deeds with dialogue taken directly from testimony in court-martial proceedings. While the main focus of the work is Clarke himself, other perpetrators of guerrilla warfare including William Clarke Quantrill, Sam Berry and Henry Magruder are also covered, as are guerrilla hunters Edwin Terrell and James Bridgewater. Previously unpublished photographs accompany this fascinating Civil War history.

About the Author(s)

Newsman and historian Thomas Shelby Watson lives in Taylorsville, Kentucky.

Perry A. Brantley works with the U.S. postal service and lives in Glasgow, Kentucky.

Bibliographic Details

Thomas Shelby Watson with Perry A. Brantley

Foreword by James M. Prichard

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 248
Bibliographic Info: 33 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2008
pISBN: 978-0-7864-3280-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1332-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      v
Foreword by James M. Prichard      1
Preface      3
Introduction      7

1. Riding with the Thunderbolt      19
2. Lighting the Fire of Reprisal      27
3. Scattered Like a Covey of Quail      33
4. The Battle Flag Flies High      42
5. Workin’ on the Railroad      47
6. Guerrillas, Guerrillas Everywhere      50
7. The Creation of Sue Mundy      52
8. The Fatal Rumor      58
9. No Mercy for the Messenger      62
10. The Warrior Wardrobe      66
11. Rome Meets Mollie      70
12. In Search of Fast Horses      74
13. Trial by the Gun      80
14. A Visit to Mackville      86
15. An Eye for An Eye      89
16. The Ride of Death      91
17. The Springfield Raid      97
18. Deathly Cold on Salt River      101
19. A Guerrilla Christmas      106
20. The Edward Caldwell Affair      110
21. Trouble at the Junction      114
22. A Battle in Bardstown      120
23. Quantrill’s Disguise      124
24 The Simpsonville Massacre      127
25. Ed Terrell’s Debatable Condition      132
26. Battle on the Little South Fork      136
27. Missourians’ “True Grit” Tested      140
28. “He is not armed. He cannot hurt you much.”      143
29. Battling the Hall’s Gap Tigers      150
30. Not Enough Friendly Rebels      155
31. The Truth Is Revealed      165
32. “I Do Truly, Fondly and Forever Love You”      172
33. The Eagle’s Claws Tighten      175
34. Lee Surrenders, Guerrillas Face Quandary      178
35. “Here They Come! Here They come!”      181
36. Terrell Kills the Blacksmith      188

Epilogue      192
Notes      211
Bibliography      225
Index      229

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “highly recommend[ed]”—Glasgow Daily Times
  • “a meticulously detailed recounting of the guerrilla warfare that raged…balanced and well organized…very nice array of rare photographs (many previously unpublished)…a notable contribution…not aware of any other study of guerilla warfare…that even remotely approaches the level of detail…very welcome”—Civil War Books and Authors
  • “this book fills a gap in the literature about Kentucky in the Civil War and the shadowy war itself.”—Thomas D. Clark, Kentucky State Historian
  • “many Kentuckians in the 1860s were more affected by guerilla activities then they were by formal battles. This well-written book tells us a great deal about the activities of irregular partisans who did much to disrupt the state as the war drew to a close.”—Lowell H. Harrison, author, professor of history, Western Kentucky University