The law office of J. D. Craddock III is located at 200 Caldwell Street on the city square of Munfordville, Kentucky in the building known as the Wood house.  This beautiful building was built by George T. Wood in 1834 as a private residence.   

    George T. Wood was the father of Thomas J. Wood, who during the Civil War became Major General Thomas J. Wood of the Union army.

    As a child, Thomas J. Wood and his family were friends with the Buckner family who lived approximately eight miles outside of Munfordville.  Thomas J. Wood was expeically good friends with Simon Bolivar Buckner of the Buckner family.

    During the Civil War, Simon Bolivar Buckner became Lieutenant General Simon Bolivar Buckner of the Confederate army.

    More can be read about Mr. Buckner and Mr. Wood in The Story of Tom and Simon by Colonel H. Engerud, USA Ret'd which is quoted below.

    The Wood house was purchased by the Craddock family in 1908.  The house was used as a private residence until about 1980 when attorney J. D. Craddock III converted it into his office space as county attorney.

The Story of Tom & Simon
By:  Colonel H. Engerud, USA, Ret'd

J. D. Craddock III
Attorney at Law

History of Location


Munfordville, Kentucky enjoys the distinction of having given two general officers to the embattled armies of the Civil War; Lieutenant General Simon Bolivar Buckner to the South; Major General Thomas J. Wood to the North.

       Thomas J. Wood, the son of George T. Wood, one of the original settlers of Munfordville, was born in that town on September 25, 1823 in the house now occupied by the C. L. Caldwells [the Caldwell/Craddock house].

       Simon Bolivar Buckner, the son of Aylett Buckner, an extensive landowner and one of the earliest settlers to come to Hart County, was born April 2, 1923 at Glen Lily, the family estate about 8 miles east of Munfordville.

       The Buckners and Woods were close friends and when the rains and snows of winter made the road from Glen Lily to Munfordville practically impassible, young Simon Buckner moved in to Munfordville, where he lived with the Woods while attending a private school known as “The Seminary.”

       The two lads, and future general[s], Simon and Tom, shared a room, sleeping in the same bed.  When not in school, they together hunted the forests; fished the streams; explored the caves and climbed the lofty knobs of the beautiful Green River Valley.

       Their companionship temporarily was broken in 1840 when Buckner received an appointment to the U. S. Military Academy at West Point.  A year later, Thomas Wood received a similar appointment and although a year apart academically, their companionship was renewed.

       Buckner graduated from the Academy and was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant in the Army in June of 1844; Wood followed in his footsteps a year later (1845).  Both officers served with honor and distinction in the War with Mexico; both being honored for gallantry in battle.

       When the Civil War borke out in 1861, Buckner espoused the cause of the Confederacy while Wood chose the Union.  When General Don Carolos Buell’s Union Army of the Ohio was, marshaling at Munfordville in the winter of 1861-62, preparatory to its southward advance, General Wood encamped his division on his father’s farm to the east of his old boyhood home.  He pitched his tent and established his headquarters in the apple orchard north of the house – under the same old trees which he and Buckner had climbed in their youth seeking green apples – and belly-aches.  The camp at Munfordville was named “Camp George T. Woods” in honor of T. J.’s father who now was an influential member of the powerful Kentucky Military Commission.

       In the bitter war which followed, the two boyhood friends and companions were pitted against one another in the bloody battles of Chickamauga and Chattanooga, Tenn.  They narrowly escaped a third direct confrontation at Munfordville, their old playground, in September of 1862.  A Confederate army, under command of General Braxton Bragg, had captured and occupied Munfordville on September 17th.  General Buckner was given a great deal of credit for the success of that event, for it was he – with his intimate knowledge of the area – who had suggested to General Bragg the practicable crossing of the Green River by a ford in the vicinity of his old home at Glen Lily and the investiture of the defending Union force from the north – an idea which he adopted with success. 

       After the Confederates occupied Munfordville, Bragg dispached General Buckner with his Division to a strong defensive position about 4 miles south of the river, where he was ordered to deploy and engage Buell's Army of the Ohio as it came upfrom the south.

        His old playmate, General Wood, was commanding that advance of Buell's army and all indications pointed to a pitched fight between Wood's and Buckner's divisions.  However, for some strange reason known only to himself, Bragg, with his enemy only a day's march distant, suddenly decided to abandon Munfordville and to retire to Bardstown.  Buckner was forced to rejoin the retreating army and thus his third confrontation with Wood on the field of battle was avoided.

       Both Buckner and Wood survived the war, adding to their reputations as combat commanders; although Wood was seriously wounded at Murfreesboro and Atlanta – wounds which forced his retirement from the Army on June 9, 1868.  He died February 28, 1906.

       After the war, Buckner returned to his home at Glen Lily.  He was Governor of Kentucky 1887-91 and an unsuccessful candidate for the Vice-Presidency of the United States on the 1896 democratic ticket.  For years, his home at Glen Lily was a center of hospitality for his old companions – the great and the near great.  His was a well-known figure on the streets of Munfordville.  The fountain in front of the Hart County Court-House is an expression of his love for his “Home Town.”  He passed away at Glen Lily on January 8, 1910 – the last surviving general of the Lost Cause."

Major General Thomas J. Wood (Union)Lieutenant General Simon Bolivar Buckner (Confederate)


"The above article was originally published in the Hart County News Bicentennial Edition. The late Col. Engerud was an enthusiastic historian and compiled much research on the battle of Munfordville. We are grateful for his dedication in obtaining this information.

The following are a few additional tidbits of information on the two Generals which might also be of interest:

  • The wife of Co. George T. Wood, General Thomas’ mother, was the sister of Kentucky Governor Charles Helm.
  • During General Wood’s first year at West Point, his room-mate was a young man by the name of U. S. “Sam” Grant, and both Wood and Buckner were classmates with many others who would make their mark on history in the conflict that lay before them.
  • T. J. Wood was ordered to Indianapolis at the beginning of hostilities in 1861, where he recruited and dispatched 400,000 men to the front. While stationed there, he met and married Miss Caroline E. Greer, daughter of Col. James Greer.
  • Wood reported to Gen. William T. Sherman at Louisville and was assigned to the command of a brigade at Camp Nevin on Nolin River; there he spent the ensuing winter training and organizing new troops. When General Buell relieved General Sherman of command in Kentucky, General Wood was placed in command of the Sixth Division of the Army of the Ohio. His command participated in routing the Confederate troops at Shiloh; was engaged in the campaign against Corinth, Mississippi, and guarded the railway in Tennessee.
  • Wood was promoted to Brigadier General after distinguished service at Chickamauga, where one of the divisions which his troops engaged most heavily was commanded by General Simon B. Buckner.
  • Wood continued to serve the Union throughout the remainder of the Civil War and Reconstruction. When he retired with the rank of Major General, he made his home in Dayton, Ohio. He delivered an address at the 100th anniversary of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, and is buried in the West Point Cemetery.
  • Simon B. Buckner was called by one of his contemporaries “the most perfect gentleman in the Confederate Army.”
  • After his distinguished service in the Mexican War, he married Mary Jane Kingsley and resigned his army commission in 1855 to pursue a career in business. He strongly urged Kentucky to remain neutral when the Confederacy was formed, and because of his impartiality was offered commands from both President Lincoln and General Scott in the Union Army; however, a strong belief in states’ rights caused him to accept the rank of brigadier general in the Confederate Army offered him by Albert Sidney Johnston.
  • General Buckner commanded troops at Bowling Green and in February, 1862, surrendered his frozen, exhausted troops at Fort Donelson, near Nashville, but stayed with his men while Generals Floyd and Pillow fled.
  • Taken prisoner, he was exchanged in August 1862 and promoted to Major General. He participated in the battles at Munfordville and Perryville in Kentucky and Chickamauga, where, as has been stated, his troops vigorously engaged in those under the command of General Thomas J. Wood.
  • After the war, he retired to Glen Lily which extended over 1,000 acres. Widowed in 1874, he remarried Delia Claiborne of Virginia in 1885. On their honeymoon, he visited the dying U. S. Grant and served as pallbearer at Grant’s funeral.
  • While serving as Governor of Kentucky, he negotiated with West Virginia’s governor over eastern Kentucky – West Virginia feuds, and in 1890 loaned the state $50,000.00 to complete the fiscal year.
  • We can only speculate on the details of the friendship that existed here in this little town in the middle of the state that was in the middle of the War Between the States. The story of Tom and Simon is but one poignant example of how this terrible conflict tore apart our young country, and causes us to ask once again, “Could it not have all been avoided?”
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