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Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Denmark Presbyterian Church - Denmark, TN

Denmark Presbyterian Church - Denmark, TN

More info from the local historic association:

Text of the Civil War Trails marker:
This church, built by slaves in 1854, played a significant role in Madison County’s Civil War experiences. In April 1861, days after the firing on Fort Sumter, South Carolina, 104 local men formed a company called The Danes, later part of the 6th Tennessee Infantry (CSA). The community gathered here at the church to watch the new soldiers muster before they left for Camp Beauregard in nearby Jackson. At the ceremony, Emma Cobb presented a silk flag with the company’s name to Capt. John Ingram.

On the eve of the Battle of Britton Lane on August 31, 1862, the 20th and 30th Illinois Infantry Regiments commanded by Col. Elias S. Dennis camped in a grove of mulberry trees near the church. After the battle, Confederate Gen. Frank C. Armstrong’s cavalry brigade spent the night in Denmark on its return south. The Confederates kept their prisoners on the church’s second floor, which was a Masonic Lodge. Inscriptions believed to have been written by these Federal soldiers can still be seen along the bottoms of the walls.

By 1863, the Union army controlled much of West Tennessee. Local Confederates returning to Denmark on leave had to be careful. During one Sunday service here, a Federal patrol burst into the church and two visiting Confederates had to hide under their girlfriends’ hoop skirts to avoid capture.

Near the church is its historic cemetery, where three Confederate veterans, including Capt. Ingram, are buried. The Church was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983.

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