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Robert Owen Cobb

Reidsville, North Carolina, United States


My name is Robert Owen Cobb, I am a writer, and I studied history under Dr. George Troxler and Dr. Durward Stokes at Elon University during the 1970’s. Some years ago, I became fascinated by a mysterious footnote in history that few Americans are familiar with, the “Kirk-Holden War.”

I first learned of the “War” in my early schoolhood days as my bus circled the Caswell County Courthouse Square. There a state historical marker proudly tells of the assassination of Senator John “Chicken” Stephens and the coming of martial law to Caswell County. When I asked my middle and high school teachers about it, they always answered, “Nice people don't like to talk about such things.” My college history professors were no help either and I became determined to research it entirely on my own.

After graduation from college, I began researching the Kirk-Holden War in earnest. I later completed Murder In The Court House, The Story of the Kirk-Holden War, a true-to-life historical creative non-fiction novel consisting of 456 double-spaced pages in standard format, taking place between 1865 and 1935. Granted, I am hardly a Margaret Mitchell, but the political drama and intrigue are such that I feel it is worthy of publication.

The events happened and the characters actually lived. It is based upon extensive research conducted at the North Carolina Department of Archives and History. Those portions not researched in Raleigh are directly derived from North Carolina’s legend and lore, which has been passed down to each of us in the state during the past one-hundred and thirty four years.

As its author, I have taken my literary privilege in uncovering the historical facts, combining them with all the political conspiracy often associated with the Kirk-Holden War and then bringing the unusual participants to life through their powerful words. Murder in the Courthouse faithfully recreates a “perfect crime” and the failure of Southern Reconstruction. Any one and everyone must read this book.

Published writer: No

Freelance: No