McQueen's 11th Book Sheds New Light on Murders throughout South

photo of Keven McQueen

Some of the cases received national attention, while others remain buried in obscurity.

Keven McQueen, a faculty member at Eastern Kentucky University, chronicles several murders that occurred throughout the South from the 1880s through the early 1930s in his 11th and newest book, “The Axman Came from Hell and Other Southern True Crime Stories,” published by Pelican Publishing

Digging beneath the surface, McQueen sheds new light on more than a dozen bone-chilling cases, including “Servant Girl Annihilator” in Texas, “Henry Delaney’s Half-Hour Marriage” in Kentucky and “Christmas for the Sims Gang” in Alabama. With a dark sense of humor, the author reveals a wicked side of a region synonymous with sweet tea and scented vines of wisteria.

“In the historical true crime genre, he (McQueen) is king,” said Laura James, crime historian and author.

“The stories are alternately chilling, fascinating and absurd and display the author’s abilities as a historian, researcher, storyteller and humorist,” said Cindi Sullivan of WAVE-TV in Louisville.

McQueen, who joined the EKU faculty in 1989, teaches composition and world literature as a lecturer in the Department of English and Theatre.

His other books include the “Offbeat Kentuckians” series, “Murder in Old Kentucky,” “The Great Louisville Tornado of 1890,” “Kentucky Book of the Dead,” “Forgotten Tales of Indiana,” and “Cruelly Murdered.”

McQueen, who resides in Berea, earned a bachelor’s degree from Berea College and a master’s degree from EKU.

Published on August 23, 2011