On November 21, the Jackson-Madison (Tennessee) Chapter of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution presented its “2013 Award for Excellence for Outstanding Print Media” to author Thomas L. Aud for his book Gold is the Key: Murder, Robbery, and the Gold Rush in Jackson, Tennessee. Congratulations, Mr. Aud!
About the book:
Citizens of Jackson, Tennessee, awakened on the morning of February 4, 1859, to discover that the local branch of the Union Bank of Tennessee had been robbed of $17,300 in paper money and $5,700 in gold coins. Tragically, the bank’s clerk, 28-year-old George E. Miller, had been brutally murdered, a canceling hammer he used in banking business smashed into his skull. Despite a diligent search by local authorities, the murderer (or murderers) was never brought to justice. Memories of the unsolved crimes resurfaced–literally–over 125 years later, when city workers unearthed a mysterious cache of gold coins believed to be part of the bank’s stolen money.
Gold is the Key recounts this fascinating chapter of Tennessee history. It tells not only the life and tragic death of the bank clerk, but life as it was for his family and friends in Jackson and Madison County before the Civil War. Author Thomas L. Aud presents a thorough investigation of the murder and robbery and offers possible suspects and motives to one of the most famous unsolved crimes in Jackson history.
About the Author:
Thomas LaVerne Aud, a native of Daviess County, Kentucky, served as Executive Director of the Jackson/Madison County Library in Jackson, Tennessee for over 31 years. He has worked as a library consultant, an adjunct professor for Jackson State Community College, Local Office Manager for the Census Bureau, and most recently as the Madison County, Tennessee Archivist. Mr. Aud lives in Jackson with his wife Celeste, and has two children and two grandchildren.