Kentucky—land of bluegrass, horse racing, bourbon, and . . . murder.
In Murder in Old Kentucky: True Crime Stories from the Bluegrass, Keven McQueen recounts dark and disturbing tales from the pages of Kentucky history, including the 1825 murder of Col. Solomon Sharp—a sordid affair that inspired Edgar Allen Poe and Robert Penn Warren—and the 1881 Ashland Tragedy, a heartbreaking murder of three innocent teenagers. This revised and expanded edition includes the story of a family terrorized by an arsonist who massacred eleven of their members and burned the property of even more, the tale of a husband and wife found shot in each other's arms with a life-sized photo of another man between them, and many more deaths that made headlines.
Meticulously researched and written with McQueen's trademark humor, Murder in Old Kentucky will captivate any fan of true crime or Kentucky history.
Introduction to 2021 edition
1. Kentucky's First Great Murder
2. Richard Shuck Confesses All, and Then Some
3. A Mob Teaches Mr. Klein the Errors of His Ways
4. Playing It Cool!
5. Col. Buford Begs to Differ with Judge Elliott
6. An Argument for the Involuntary Commitment of the Criminally Insane
7. An Arsonist with a Grudge
8. Cold Case File, 1866
9. A Question of Sanity
10. The Hanging of John Vonderheide
11. A Regular Killing Machine
12. "A Little Fun:" The Ashland Tragedy
13. A Two-Fisted Professor Refuses to Take No for an Answer
14. Moses Caton, Family Man
15. Knox County Atrocity
16. A Possible Poisoner, and a Definite One
17. The Smart Murders, or: Choose Your Friends Wisely
18. How Not to Spend Homecoming Week
19. The Showers-Moore Tragedy
20. On the Benefits of Keeping One's Temper
21. A Heart in the Wrong Place
22. Two for the Chair
23. Murder on a College Campus
24. Same Story, Different Endings
25. The Head on the Mound
"Keven McQueen delivers again from his archive of what grandma and grandpa refused to talk about. He proves convincingly that 'The Good Old Days' were not always as 'good' as some would have us believe."~Daniel Allen Hearn, author of Legal Executions in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky and Missouri, a Comprehensive Registry, 1866-1965
"Kevin McQueen has an excellent narrative writing style that captures these true crime stories from Kentucky's past. This book is a true "page turner" that is both informative and entertaining."~James M. Gifford, CEO & Senior Editor, Jesse Stuart Foundation
"I wouldn't be a writer if I hadn't first been inspired by the works of Keven McQueen. His style captures both the gothic horror and wry humor intrinsic to southern storytelling. These considerations are the heart and soul of his many books, including Murder in Old Kentucky: True Crime Stories from the Bluegrass. I try to make those qualities the core of my books too, all while secretly hoping to impress my hero, Mr. Keven McQueen."~JD Wilkes, author of The Vine That Ate the South
"There's a saying in the news: if it bleeds, it leads. Death, murder, and mayhem go on the front page because we can't look away. We must stare, no matter how gruesome, because we're afraid we might see our own reflection gazing back at us from within those pools of blood. Just like a crime scene, you can't look away from Murder in Old Kentucky. Think of Keven McQueen as one part roving reporter of the macabre, one part editor-in-chief of the dastardly, as he takes you through the annals of Kentucky's often dark past. A must-read for true crime fans!"~Jeff Belanger, author of The World's Most Haunted Places