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Kirkland Bushwhackers
Bushwhacking John
Bushwhacking John
The most bloodthirsty all bushwhackers operating in the closing years of the war in Monroe County and vicinity, were the Kirkland Bushwhackers, headed by former 2nd Lieutenant John Jackson Kirkland (Bushwhacking John) of Company B, Third Tennessee Mounted Infantry. John was a Confederate deserter. There were nine men named Kirkland in the Third Tennessee Regiment, eight of them in Company B, raised at Madisonville and vicinity and accepted into the Confederate Army at Lynchburg, VA, June 6, 1861. James Kirkland was captured and paroled at Vicksburg in July, 1863 and so was his brother, William. Their Confederate service ceased after their parole. Their brother, Jesse Kirkland, Jr., Third Sergeant of Company B, 59th Tennessee, was captured and paroled at Vicksburg and was reported AWOL on January 1, 1864. He was shot and killed at the Stump Ford in North Carolina by members of Tim Lyons' Company C, Third Tennessee Mounted Infantry on 3 October 1864. Bushwhacking John remained in Cherokee County after the war and was there when Graham County was established in 1872. He continued to reside in the County and owned several tracts of land.

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