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The Battle of Springfield, Missouri

January 8th, 1863

 Although far from a major Civil War battle, the Battle of Springfield has often been overlooked by Civil War buffs who are more familiar with other Ozark battles, such as The Battle of Carthage, Pea Ridge or, of course, Wilson's Creek. This site will attempt to pay some tribute to the brave men who fought in this very interesting battle. My own interest in this engagement stems from my interest in Civil War history, the fact that Springfield is my hometown, and both my Great, Great Uncle Capt. Roswell Hart and my Great Grandfather Private Wash Davis fought in this battle. Roswell commanded Company B of the 72nd EMM and was wounded in the battle. He told his grandson an account of the wound he received: "He had suffered a bullet wound through the calf of the leg when he had his horse shot from him, pinning him to the ground. A Confederate Officer rode down on him with his saber raised, but he (the Confederate Officer) was shot from his saddle before he had time to strike"

 

 

To contact the creator of this page, e-mail me at: ec21davis@gmail.com

 Click here to read Dispatches made during the Battle of Springfield: Dispatch

To see a map showing 1863 Springfield, with battle positions click: Springfield, 1863

To see a modern map of part of Springfield, with the locations from the battles shown click:

Springfield, 1999 with 1863 Battle positions

 

Participants:

Confederate Forces:

(Left to Right: General Marmaduke, Col. McDonald and Gen. Shelby)

General Marmaduke is said to have had 2,000 men in his force which attacked. All were mounted.

1. Capt. R.A. Collin's Battery of Artillery (2 pieces)

2. Lt. Col. Gordon commanding Shelby's Regiment

3. Col. Gideon Thompson's Regiment

4. Col. Jean's Regiment

5. Col. Ben Elliott's Battalion

6. Col. Emmett McDonald's Battalion.

 

 


Union Forces:

(Left to Right: General Brown and Capt. Burch)

General Brown was said to have had 1,566 Infantry men and 200 Cavalry defending Springfield.

1. 8 Companies of the 18th Iowa commanded by Lt. Col. Cook

2. 10 Companies of 500 or 600 men of the 3rd Missouri Militia commanded by Col. Walter King

3. 253 men from the 72nd Enrolled Missouri Militia Commanded by Col. Henry Sheppard with Lt. Col. Jones.

4. Men from the 73rd Enrolled Missouri Militia

5. Men from the 74th Enrolled Missouri Militia

6. A detachment from the 14th Missouri State Militia Cavalry commanded by Capt. Milton Burch.

7. 1,200 wounded and sick soldiers and Civilians organized by Surgeon S.H. Melcher.

Total Union forces is given as 2,099 in some reports.


 

The Setting:

Springfield, Missouri is the county seat of Greene County. In the 1860s, the railroads hadn't yet reached Springfield. Construction of rails to connect St.Louis and Springfield had begun in the late 1850s, but the outbreak of the Civil War and the turmoil within Missouri put a halt to that. Rails went from St. Louis, halfway to Springfield, stopping around Rolla. Even without a rail connection, Springfield was an important military depot and the city had hospitals and was a good place to get supplies. After the Battle of Wilson's Creek and a short period of occupation by the Confederates, Springfield, by 1862 was firmly in Union hands. During 1862, heavy fortifications were began by Union forces.

To read an account of the Battle from the book "Past and Present of Greene County, Missouri" and to see some of the beautiful Civil War paintings of Missouri Artist Andy Thomas click the following link:

Read "Past and Present of Greene County, Missouri"

The complete text of both books are available at the Springfield/Greene County Library webpage. Click the following link to visit the library's on-line books:

Springfield/Greene County Library On-line History books Index page

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The following chapter is from the book, "History of Greene County, Missouri 1883" by R.I. Holcombe

 

 

THE BATTLE OF SPRINGFIELD.1

The year 1863 opened on Greene county with the stars and stripes waving fair and free over all her soil, and with the Federal troops in undisputed possession of all the military stations, and no vexatious "rebels" near to molest them or make them afraid. But this altogether pleasant state of affairs for the men and the cause of Uncle Sam was not long to continue. There was a mustering of the Confederate clans across the border in Arkansas that boded no good to the men in blue. [429]

Springfield was now the great military depot for the Federal "Army of the Frontier," which, under Gens. Schofield, Herron, and Blunt, was down in northwestern Arkansas resting, on the laurels won at Prairie Grove. There were forts and cannon and muskets and powder and shot and shells and provisions and quartermasters' stores and hospital supplies in great abundance, but few soldiers. Nearly all the available troops had gone to the front, and a detachment of eight companies of the 18th Iowa Infantry under Lieut. Col. Cook, was the only regular garrison in the place. The 3d M. S. M., under Col. Walter King, 10 companies, 500 strong, were temporarily here. There were about 1,200 sick and wounded in the hospitals in charge of Surgeon S. H. Melcher, formerly the assistant surgeon of Salomon's old 5th Missouri, and there were also perhaps 300 furloughed men and convalescents in a camp in the north part of town awaiting transportation, pay, etc., while down at Ozark and out at other points were detachments of the Missouri State Militia, which might be called in if a reasonable time were given. Col. Boyd's and Col. Sheppard's regiments of the Enrolled Militia were lying around loose at their homes throughout Greene, Lawrence and other counties. The district of Southwest Missouri was under the command of Gen. Egbert B. Brown, of the E. M. M., and under him was Col. Benj. Crabb, of the 19th Iowa Infantry, who was in command of the post.

 

Figure 1: From Harper's Weekly, Nov. 30, 1861 -- Springfield, Missouri showing the Plaza.

About the 1st of January it came to be known to the Confederate General John S. Marmaduke, down in Arkansas, at Louisburg and Pocahontas, that there was a big, fat prize up in Missouri, and in Greene county, to be had for the taking-namely, the goodly town of Springfield, with all of its military stores and other "loot," and with all of its mules and wagons to transport the captures into Dixie. The weakness of the garrison and the exact condition of the place were described to the Confederate commander with great exactness. If a sudden concentration of forces could be effected and a swift march made, the capture of Springfield was certain-with all that the term implied. The base of supplies for Schofield's army would be broken, Gen. Blunt would be forced to let go his hold on the Arkansas river, and both Herron and Blunt would be compelled to abandon northwest Arkansas, and fall back, running the risk of fighting a battle en route under all disadvantages; heavy reinforcements would have to be sent to this quarter, and it would take months of time and millions of treasure to repair the damage inflicted by this raid, if it were successful,-and why should it not be? [430]

Gen. Marmaduke divided his little army into two columns. One, under Col. Joseph C. Porter, was to move from Pocahontas, Ark., and coming via Hartville and Marshfield, was to be in the neighborhood of Springfield on the east by the evening of January 10th. Porter's forces consisted of the cavalry regiments of Colton Green and Burbridge and a battalion or two besides-800 men.

The main column under the immediate command of Marmaduke himself consisted of Col. Jo. Shelby's brigade, composed of Shelby's old regiment, then led by Lt. Col. Gordon, of Lafayette county; Col. Gideon Thompson's regiment, Col. Jeans' regiment, Col. Ben Elliott's battalion, Col. Emmett McDonald's battalion, or regiment, and Capt. R. A. Collins' battery of two pieces, the entire brigade numbering not far from 2,000 men.2 All of the forces, including Porter's, were mounted. Shelby's brigade was to leave Louisburg, Ark., come north into Missouri through Taney county, swoop down upon the isolated Federal posts at Forsyth and Ozark, gobble them up, and be on the south of Springfield by the 10th and join forces with Jo. Porter.

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1 The battle of Wilson's Creek was at the time and is yet frequently called the battle of Springfield. The battle of Wilson's Creek (or Oak Hills) was fought Aug. 10, 1861; the battle of Springfield, January 8, 1863.

2 Edwards' "Shelby and His Men," page 140, fourth line from the bottom, says Shelby's brigade numbered 1,800; McDonald's battalion 200 more.

 

 

THE REBELS ARE COMING

On the evening of the 7th there came clattering into Springfield from the south a scouting party composed of detachments of the 14th Missouri State militia and of the 73d E. M. M., all under command of Capt. Milton Burch, of the 14th M. S. M., and reported to Gen. Brown that a large force of Confederates, numbering all the way from 2,000 to 6,000 had come upon Lawrence Mill, Taney county, from Dubuque, Arkansas, and was on its way to Springfield, as fast as it could travel, to capture the place and play the mischief with the Federal cause generally! The alarm was given and Gen. Brown notified.

That officer immediately sent out swift messengers who scurried over the county calling up the enrolled militia of Col. Johnson's 26th regiment, Col. Sheppard's 72d, and Col. Marcus Boyd's 74th, ordering them to concentrate immediately at Springfield. Word was also sent to detached companies in Webster, Lawrence and Dade counties, and to Mt. Vernon and Cassville. [431]

All possible preparation was made in Springfield. Every soldier that could shoot a gun was called out, and all of the citizens belonging to the militia were mustered. The sick and wounded soldiers in the hospitals who were able crawled out from their bunks, were organized into companies by Surgeon Melcher, and were given muskets by him. "The quinine brigade," as these men were sometimes called afterwards, did heroic and valuable service. The transient soldiers were organized under Capt. C. B. McAfee, of the 3d M. S. M., and others.

EXTEMPORIZING ARTILLERY.

Fort No. 4, on South street, was without artillery. Early in the evening Surgeon S. H. Melcher, in charge of the post hospital, and Col. B. O. Carr, chief quartermaster of the Army of the Frontier, called on Gen. Brown and from him first learned of the danger. After some solicitation Gen. Brown consented that Col. Carr and Dr. Melcher should assist in the defense. Dr. Melcher suggested that it was very important that Fort No. 4 should be supplied with artillery. Gen. Brown said he had none available. Dr. Melcher replied: "There are three old iron guns, two 12-pounders and a 6-pounder, lying on the ground down by the Presbyterian church. They can be rigged up and shot off once apiece, anyhow, and that will help scare, if nothing more!"

Gen. Brown at last gave permission to "rig up" the cannon. At about 10 o'clock that night Dr. Melcher went through his hospital and found Lieut. Joseph Hoffman, of Backoff's battery, 1st Missouri artillery, and also a sergeant and seven privates of the same regiment. The nine artillery men readily volunteered to take charge of the guns, and to do their best, in their sick, enfeebled condition. Col. Carr furnished the front wheels of three army wagons for gun-carriages. With chains and other devices the cannons were fastened to the axles. Some carpenters made trail-pieces and prepared blocks and wedges as substitutes for elevating screws, and before morning the three guns, well mounted, were in position in Fort No. 4, supplied with plenty of ammunition, and manned by the nine gunners of the 1st Missouri, and some other volunteers. Sergt. Christian Mindener, of Battery L, 1st Mo. Artillery, had charge of one of the guns, and says he was "awakened from a peaceful slumber by Dr. Melcher, who put me in charge," etc. [432]

A considerable detachment of the 18th Iowa occupied Fort No. 1; another detachment was in Fort No. 2. The detachments of the 4th M. S. M., the 14th M. S. M., and the 3d M. S. M., were stationed west, east and south of town watching, the roads. It was hardly expected to make a successful defense of the place, since it was almost wholly unprotected on the east along and on both sides of the St. Louis road, and it was believed that the Confederates knew the vulnerable points, and would come rattling down the little Wilson's creek valley from the east and be upon the public square in fifteen minutes after the firing of the first shot-and then the town would be lost.

Gen. Brown at first wanted to retreat. Other officers, among whom were Cols. Sheppard and Boyd, thought it might be necessary to surrender the town, but they did not wish to do so without first making a fight. Col. Crabb and Lieut. Col. Cook declared that if it came to the worst all should repair to Fort No. 1 and behind its strong walls keep up the fight until reinforcements came. Gen. Brown, never a very efficient and determined officer, was on this occasion especially flustered and irresolute, and throughout the night was in a very perturbed state of mind, declaring one minute that he would retreat, and the next that he would fight. Sheppard and Boyd, whose homes were here, were determined not to retreat or yield without first having tried the metal of Marmaduke's merry men.

Meantime Surgeon Melcher had gone through the hospitals calling for volunteers to defend the town. The hospitals then consisted of the court-house (the present) with some forty tents, the Lyon hotel, (now the Southern) with forty tents, the buildings at the Berry place, and some private residences. About 300 men were obtained who were able to walk about and were willing to fight, and they were organized into companies of 50 each and placed under the command of nurses and stewards, and disabled commissioned officers. Then they were marched down to the arsenal and furnished with muskets and ammunition. Dr. Meleher at once set his cooks to work preparing cooked rations, and in the morning, with their "grub" in their haversacks, their quinine, calomel, and jalap in their pockets, and patriotic pluck in their hearts, the members of the "quinine brigade" marched totteringly but bravely out to the skirmish line.

As to the character and importance of the service rendered at the battle of Springfield by Dr. Melcher and his "quinine brigade," Gen. E. B. Brown, under oath, June 6, 1874, before Rufus Campion, notary public of St. Louis, the following being an extract from his testimony: [433]

 

During the attack of Gen. Marmaduke, he, the said Melcher, organized the convalescents under his control into military companies, who, acting under his (Melcher's) direction, did very efficient duty in the battle and greatly assisted in the defense of said post, and thereby saved several millions of dollars to the government of the United States in military stores deposited at that point for the use of the Army of the Frontier, then in northwest Arkansas. I have always been and am still of the opinion that, as my command was composed entirely of irregular troops and militia, without the aid and assistance of said Melcher, as aforesaid, I could not have successfully defended said post.

 

All through the night and in the early morning the members of the enrolled militia kept coming in. During the night, too, confirmation of the advance of the Confederates was received from squads that came in from toward Forsyth. The people of the town were greatly excited. Many of the Unionists were seriously alarmed. It was said that the town would be taken, and then woe to the Yankee sympathizers and their property!

The Confederate sympathizers did not seem cast down with a great burden of sorrow, or plunged into an ocean of grief at the prospect of a speedy occupation of the town by their friends, and a sight, brief though it might be, of the bonnie stars and bars. From lip to lip the message had run that Marmaduke was coming, and with him were some of the Greene county boys that were wearing the gray, whom it would be an extra delight to welcome when they should enter with the gush of victory on their brows. The ladies at that day were almost universally violent partisans for one side or the other, and they were especially demonstrative at this time in expressing their glee or their dissatisfaction at the prospective coming of the "rebels."

Some of the citizens "packed their traps" and betook themselves to the houses of relatives and friends in the country; others fled from exposed situations to Fort No. 1 and to the public square; still others went to their cellars; all hid their money and valuables. It was a night of excitement, alarm, and terror, to be sure.

 

"FALL IN! FALL IN!"

At daylight on the morning of the 8th there came galloping into town the detachment of the 14th M. S. M., which had been stationed at Ozark, and reported that Marmaduke, Shelby, Emmett McDonald, and other chieftains of equal and lower degree had attacked them at their post at about 10 o'clock the night before, had driven them out, and were now upon their heels. They added that the Confederates had destroyed their fort by giving it to the flames, and burning everything inflammable. They had ridden all night, they said, and had carefully noted the movements of their pursuers, and knew that Springfield was the objective point. [434]

Immediately Gen. Brown began to prepare in dead earnest for the fight. Capt. Green B. Phillips' company of Col. Boyd's regiment of militia, was thrown into Fort No. 4, as were a number of the convalescents from the hospitals and the volunteer runners under Lieut. Hoffman, who were to work the pieces of artillery in the fort. To the west of the old graveyard, on Campbell street, and between Campbell and Market, near Grand avenue, stood a two-story brick college building, enclosed on three sides with a stout palisade, which had been used by the garrison as a military prison. The prisoners, about 50 Confederates, were now taken out of this prison and carried to the jail, and the building was ordered by Gen. Brown to be filled with. soldiers; but by some over-sight this was not done. On the left of Brown's line, to the southeast of town, the cavalry were stationed, under Lt. Col. Walter King, of the 3d M. S. M. To the right of the cavalry and to the left of the fort was a detachment of the "quinine brigade." What of Boyd's regiment (the 74th) that had got into town,-with the exception of Co. C,-Phillips' company,-was over in Fort No. 1, where also the greater portion of the 18th Iowa was. In Fort No. 2 were about 100 men belonging to the 18th Iowa and the "quinine brigade." Col. Sheppard's 72d regiment, to the number of 238 men, were in the public square, awaiting orders.

Capt. McAfee organized a number of men from the convalescent camp and some citizens, armed them, and, reporting to Gen. Brown for orders, was assigned to the arsenal, the church building of the M. E. South, which is still standing on South street, and was then piled full of tons of ammunition of all kinds, cartridges, shot and shell, and hundreds of stands of arms. Gen. Brown ordered Capt. McAfee to prepare oil, turpentine, shavings and other inflammables, and be ready to set fire to and blow up the arsenal and magazine, when ordered or when it became evident that the town had fallen.

Only one battalion of the 4th M. S. M. was present, commanded by Col. Geo. H. Hall, of St. Joseph, and under him was Maj. Douglass Dale.

Dr. Melcher states that just as the last company of the convalescents was being armed, the next morning, the skirmishing began. Just then a company of citizens, forty-two in number, came running up and asked to be furnished with arms and ammunition. They were supplied, joined the "quinine brigade," and Dr. Melcher says fought bravely throughout the day. [435]

The convalescents and citizens were distributed in Fort No. 4, and in houses and along the line in that vicinity, except the detachment stationed at the arsenal.

MARMADUKE'S MARCH.

Leaving Louisburg, Ark., Marmaduke crossed White river at Dubuque, and so far all was well. The march was to be made in silence and the Federals were to be surprised. Porter was to come in from the eastward and brush away the small Federal garrisons at Hartville and elsewhere, and prevent their forming in the rear, and, as this would take a little time, Marmaduke, with Shelby's brigade, was to move leisurely and give the other column plenty of time to get up to Springfield before the fight should come off. Bad luck! Near Dubuque a little scouting party was encountered, and, instead of running away, stood its ground and made a "nasty little fight " with the advance of Shelby's brigade, Elliott's' battalion, and found out the size and character of the Confederate force and its probable destination, and then hurried away to give the alarm, turning about and watching from time to time, but keeping swift messengers on the way to Springfield, and these rode without drawing bridle rein, save to exchange an exhausted horse for a fresh one.

No leisure now! The march was to be a rush, and Springfield reached within 24 hours if men and horses could do it. Messengers dashed eastwardly across the country to Porter to inform him of the change in the program rendered necessary by circumstances which could not be foreseen, and to order him to turn squarely across the country by the first road that ran westward, and be at Springfield by the evening of the 8th at the latest. But either because they missed their way and became entangled and bewildered amid the rocky roads-no better than sheep paths that led through the mountains and hills and woods of the country, or else because Porter had passed by when they struck his trail-these messengers failed to find Porter, and that officer passed on with his force, unconscious that anything had occurred to change the original plan.

A detachment of the 14th M. S. M., under Capt. Birch, went down from Ozark to ascertain if the reported invasion was a fact. Not far from White river this detachment came upon a Confederate lieutenant and two men, who had been left sick in a house by the roadside. From them it was learned that in truth, and in dangerous numbers, the Confederates were on the war path, with such bold leaders as Marmaduke, Shelby, and the long-haired Emmett McDonald at their head.

Striking northward, Capt. Birch made for the Federal post at Lawrence Mills, on Beaver creek, in the northwestern part of Taney county, where Maj. Turner, of the 73d E. M. M., had about 75 Douglas and Taney county men in garrison in a little block-house and fort. Reaching the fort in good time Birch warned Maj. Turner of his danger and advised him to evacuate the post and go on to Ozark. But Turner was an old man, had been long in the service, and had heard a great deal more of the Confederates than he had ever seen of them, and was incredulous about there being any more of them then in the country than a squad of bushwhackers.

Scarcely had Maj. Turner delivered himself of his opinions, when "spat-spat-spat-" the pistol shots of the Confederate advance firing on his pickets were heard! A few moments later and Emmett McDonald, with 500 cavalry, dashed up and assaulted the block house and the men in it and around it, cheering and shouting and making more noise than a charivari party at a country wedding! The fight was soon over. The 14th M. S. M. scampered away towards Ozark; Maj. Turner was wounded; four or five of his men were killed, and very soon nearly the whole outfit were prisoners of war, had been paroled, and McDonald was clattering across the country to join the main body under Marmaduke.

Gen. Marmaduke had come on the main Yellville road, leaving Forsyth to the left and west, and striking straight for Ozark and Springfield. McDonald had been detached to "cleanup" the post at Beaver or Lawrence Mills, and not allow it to form and follow in the rear, and right well did he do his work. Three days later his work was done forever.

In the evening of the 7th, Shelby's brigade was near Ozark, and stopped an hour or so to eat a hasty supper and give the horses a bundle of fodder and a few ears of corn. Near midnight a gallop was made by the advance into Ozark, where the 14th M. S. M. had abandoned the post in haste, and gone on to Springfield. The fort and block house were burned, and then, after a few prisoners had been made, the command, Shelby and Marmaduke at the head, with Elliott's battalion, struck out for Springfield on the main road, with the polar star to steer by should they miss the way. En route a few prisoners were picked up, mainly members of the militia, and a few citizens of Union proclivities. [437]

By daylight the advance reached Phelps' farm, and, after some discussion as to the propriety of waiting for Porter, keeping the town closely invested in the meanwhile, a line of fight was formed between 9 and 10 o'clock. Some skirmishers from the militia, advancing through some high weeds, were discovered, fired on, and brought down severely wounded. Preparations were at first made to feel of the Federals at the southeast corner of their position, on the St. Louis road, and a regiment (Thompson's) was swung around to the right.

Two miles from the public square, in the edge of the timber, Marmaduke formed his line for the attack. Gid. Thompson's regiment held the right; Shelby's regiment, commanded by Lieut. Col. Gordon, held the left; Jeans' regiment, commanded by Lieut. Col. Chas. Gilkey, and Collins' battery were in the center. These troops were dismounted. Elliott's and McDonald's battalions continued to operate as cavalry, Elliott to the right, and McDonald to the left. The lines were formed in the open prairie, under fire.

Here Gen. Marmaduke made a fatal blunder. The Federals had been of the opinion that his force numbered something near 5,000 or 6,000 men, and were consequently much in fear of him. Now, he came fairly up in sight of them, displayed his whole force almost so plainly that every man could be counted, and gave away his weakness showing that he had but a few hundred men more than they had, and then Gen. Brown, hitherto a little undecided, determined to fight to the last.

 

Figure 22 : Also from Harper's Weekly, Springfield, Missouri in 1861 looking toward the Courthouse (in the distance)

BURNING HOUSES.

Early in the morning, after it had become apparent that the Confederate attack was to come from the south and southeast, Gen. Brown ordered to be burned a number of houses that obstructed the range and sweep of the guns of Fort No. 4, on South street. Perhaps ten or a dozen buildings were thus destroyed, half of which belonged to Mrs. J. A. Stephens, widow of the Union citizen killed by accident by Zagonyi's men. Another house destroyed belonged to W. P. Davis, a Union man, in the Federal service at the time. The expediency of this action has been called in question, but no doubt Gen. Brown thought it necessary to prevent a lodgment of the enemy in his immediate front, and the severe, if not fatal, harassment of his best position. Perhaps the destruction of these houses was a "military necessity," made so by the exigency of the occasion, but in that event the government ought long ago to have paid their loyal owners full value for them, which at this date it has not done. [438]

The burning of the houses added not only fuel to the general flame, but distraction to the already intense excitement among the citizens, numbers of whom began leaving with their lares and penates for the sheltering walls of Fort No. 1, and continued to tramp back and forth from that fortification during the day.

 

THE FIGHT BEGINS.

On St. Louis street was Walter King's 3d M. S. M. (which regiment, a month later, was broken up and distributed among the 6th and 7th M. S. M.) and the 14th M. S. M., numbering at least 600 men, and they were to the north and south of the street. Near the public square a huge steam boiler and some other obstructions were placed across the street.

Upon the front of King's regiment hovered a force of Confederate cavalry, Elliott's battalion sent to feel the way and to learn if the route into the city by St. Louis street and down the valley of Wilson's, creek were practicable. A sharp skirmish ensued. The Confederate force was small and it fell back. Then King's regiment charged and drove the force well back on the prairie, but did not follow for fearful of being cut off. Returning to their original position the Federals with their carbines at somewhat long range upon such of the Confederates as showed themselves, and at least one more successful charge was made, the forces not coming to close quarters, however, and doing but little injury to each other in the matter of wounds and casualties.

Here Marmaduke made another serious mistake. Had he concentrated his entire force upon the southeast and east and made one grand rushing charge, he would have broken King's line easily and been into town upon the public square in ten minutes after his bugles had sounded the advance. The force he sent was by far too small to effect anything, like success. The Federals fought well and made a display of all their force in that quarter, and did a deal of marching up and counter-marching to the rear, which had the effect to make the Confederates believe that there was a very powerful force in their front, and it was known that it was too strong for the force which had been sent to develop it. The entire Confederate force then was formed well to the southeast, and the men sat upon their horses waiting and wondering what was to be done next. [439]

SHELBY SENDS HIS COMPLIMENTS.

The attack on Springfield was begun by the Confederates without a demand for surrender, and now the bombardment of the town was commenced without notification to remove the women and children, a circumstance unfavorably commented upon by the Federals. Moving up the two guns belonging to his brigade, Col. Shelby ordered their commander, Capt. R. A. Collins, to open on the town and Fort No. 4. Collins unlimbered and soon was banging away, his balls falling about the fort and into and near the square in quite rapid succession, and with very uncomfortable precision. One shot pierced the Lyon house, (now the Southern Hotel) on South street; two others, struck the church building of the M. E. South, then occupied as an arsenal, and guarded by Capt. McAfee's convalescents.

COMPLIMENTS RETURNED.

The iron guns in Fort No. 4 now began to reply to the two guns of Shelby's and for a time there was quite a free interchange of metallic compliments between Lieut. Hoffman and Dick Collins. Capt. Phillips' company of Marcus Boyd's regiment of militia and the convalescents in the fort tried the range of their muskets too, and quite a din arose. Hoffman threw shell, as he had howitzers, and Collins threw solid shot. (It is not certain that Hoffman did not open the fight, by shelling Marmaduke's advance.)

Figure 3: A battle between Cavalry units occurred during the day at the area near modern Parkview High School

 

MANEUVERING.

The fighting now slackened for a time. It was about half-past 11. Marmaduke conferred with his officers, who examined the field in front as well as they were able with their field-glasses, and after a great deal of riding about and consulting, it was finally agreed to assault the Federal position from the south and southwest. Gen. Marmaduke himself, being very near-sighted, could tell nothing about the position of his enemy, but approved the plan of attack, which was begun at once.

The troops had been drawn up in line and dismounted; they might as well have been disarmed. Shelby's men were never themselves save when upon their horses. Right cheerfully would they have formed in columns "by fours" and charged up South street, letting the firing of the fort and its supporters go for what it was worth, but very reluctantly did they abandoned their trusty steeds, and take to their "trotters" for it, just as the "web feet," as they called the infantry, fought. [440]

The Federals were maneuvering too. Some of King's men and the 4th M. S. M. were moved out upon the Fayetteville road, and then to the north of that thoroughfare, in the southwest quarter of town. The 72d regiment of militia was also moved up from the public square to the Fayetteville road, for it was evident to Gen. Brown that an attack was to be made in that quarter. There was a lot of galloping about on the part of the officers, and a great deal of "double-quicking" on the part of the men as they hurried from one part of town to the other. The route from town to Fort No. 1 was also well thronged, with fugitives tramping back and forth from their homes carrying over their most valuable articles for safe keeping.

Many Union citizens, not already organized by Dr. Melcher, were willing to fight to defend the town, and asked for arms. Lietut. Creighton was the officer in charge of the arsenal proper and he issued muskets to those having orders for them and made every man that received a gun sign a receipt for it. This proceeding required so much time that Capt. McAfee says he summarily interfered, drove Creighton away, and then gave gains to those who asked for them as fast as he could hand them out. There was no time for red-tape proceedings then, with an enemy thundering at the gates of the city and the people clamoring to be allowed to defend them.

 

GEN. BROWN WOUNDED.

At about 3 p.m. Gen. Brown was severely wounded in the arm. He had ridden out South street to the corner of State, to encourage the men, and while here with some of his staff, was shot from his horse. He went to the rear and by written order turned over the command of the troops engaged in defending the city to Col. Crabb. His arm bone above the elbow was broken, and afterwards a piece was taken out. He did not leave the service, however, until several months later, and commanded the forces sent against Shelby in his raid the ensuing fall, Gen. Brown's arm was dressed and saved from amputation by Surgeon Melcher.3 The operation was counted one of the most skillful in the surgical annals of the war. [441]

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3 The Confederates, unlike some of the Federals, gave Gen. Brown great credit for courage and good conduct at the battle of Springfield. Maj. Edwards, in his account of the battle ("Shelby and His Men," p. 139) says: "Gen. Brown made a splendid fight for his town, and exhibited conspicuous courage and ability. He rode the entire length of Shelby's brigade, under a severe fire, clad in bold regimentals, elegantly mounted and ahead of all, so that the fire might be concentrated on him. It was reckless bravado, but Gen. Brown gained by one bold dash the admiration and respect of Shelby's soldiers. * * * As he rode along the front of the brigade, two hundred voices were heard above the crashing muskets, 'Cease firing- don't shoot that man-let him go-let him go.' I take pleasure in paying this tribute to a brave and generous officer."

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THE MAIN FIGHT OF THE DAY.

At about 2 in the afternoon the Confederates dismounted, began moving around toward the southwest part of town.

One of the guns of Collins', battery was also sent around and took up a position a little to the west of Market street and opened on the 72d in its front with grape and canister. Previously Lieut. Col. Jones, of the 72d, had made a reconnaissance down in the brush on the Fayetteville road and found no enemy. Presently Collins' second gun followed the first.

Sometime between two and three o'clock the fight began in earnest. The Confederates advanced from the south towards the north and northwest, coming up the little valley at the foot of South and Campbell streets, and sweeping over the ground to the westward. On they came, through "Dutchtown," as a collection of houses at the foot of Campbell street was called, taking the houses and their outbuildings for shelter as they advanced-forward to the stockaded college building, which had been left unguarded, and captured it without losing a man-beating down and driving backward the 72d, pushing on, on, step by step, from house to house, from street to street, until the 72d was back upon College street and they were along West Walnut.

In front of No. 4 was a portion of Jeans' regiment of Confederates under Gilkey, and some of Gordon's men, meaning to storm the fort when there was a good opportunity, but Hoffman's gunners served their old iron pieces so vigorously, and the members of the "quinine battalion" popped away with their muskets so rapidly, pausing occasionally to take a powder or a pill, and both cannoneers and quinineers worked so effectively that Gordon and Gilkey gave up for a bad job all attempts at assault, and the Confederates drifted westward and over about the graveyard.

Some of the sharpest and hardest fighting of the day was done in and about this graveyard, amid the tombstones and the cold "hic jacets" of the dead. Back and forth through the aisles and across the graves of the silent sleepers ran blue coats and gray jackets, and through the trees, where nothing but birds had sun and soft breezes had blown aforetime, now whistled the cannon shot and shrieked the bombshell. [442]

THE 72d RALLIES AND THE CONVALESCENTS COME TO THE RESCUE.

An incessant fire upon the Confederate line was kept up from Fort No. 4 and by its supports, and the 72d regiment, under Sheppard and Jones, came gallantly "to the right about," and advanced against the enemy driving the enemy back across and a little to the south of Mt. Vernon street. A number of volunteers from among the convalescents at the arsenal double-quicked across to the corner of Market and Mt. Vernon and took possession of the dwelling house then occupied by Mrs. Toney, and from this point of vantage opened on the Confederates in front, first driving away Mrs. Toney, who made a sudden appearance from her cellar, and refused to leave until the soldiers, in language more forcible than elegant, and inexcusable under any other circumstances, commanded her to depart, when she ran away, with the Confederate bullets singing about her ears quite lively. When the fight was over nine of the convalescents lay weltering in their blood about this house and the building itself was riddled with bullet holes, the marks of which are plainly visible at this day. On the vacant lot just east of Mrs. Toney's house known now as "the show ground," men in blue and men in gray lay scattered about, some moaning and groaning, and others silent and pulseless and cold in death.

SHELBY VS. SHEPPARD.

For an hour or more lively skirmishing was kept up between the Confederates of Gordon's and Thompson's regiments and Sheppard's 72d and the convalescents. A little after 4 o'clock five companies of the 18th Iowa came up from toward Fort No. 1 and went into position along the Fayetteville road, opening a galling fire on the enemy in sight. On two or three occasions some of Shelby's men, who were working themselves around to the right or west of the Federal line, were charged and driven back by the cavalry on that flank stationed there to prevent the turning of the Federal right. The Confederates in the stockade made it lively for every bluecoat in range, and an attempt to drive them out was abandoned before it was fairly begun.

CAPTURE OF THE "IOWA CANNON."

There were two six-pound brass field pieces over in Fort No. 1. Some time before the Confederates advanced on their grand charge, one of these guns, manned and supported by detachments from the 18th Iowa, under Capts. John A. Landis, Wm. R. Blue, and Joseph Van Meter, had been run over to strengthen the Federal right. A minute or two before the charge was made, this gun came into position on State street, a little east of Campbell, and to the east and south of the cemetery, and opened on Shelby's brigade with canister. [443]

Immediately a battalion of Gilkey's men under Maj. John Bowman, and some of Gordon's regiment under Capt. Titsworth, sprang away for this gun, and after a short hard fight captured it and hauled it away in triumph, after driving back the supports to the fort, and to the left and into and beyond the graveyard. The hardest fight of the engagement was had here.

Maj. Bowman dashed up and called out to the Iowans, "Surrender! Surrender!" Capt. Landis replied, "We were here first; you surrender!" Bowman instantly fired, the ball taking off Landis' shoulder strap. Almost at the same moment a shot from the Iowan's revolver struck Maj. Bowman just below the heart. In the fierce 'fight that followed Captains Blue and Van Meter were mortally wounded, two or three of their men were killed, and Capt. Landis and a dozen more of the Hawkeyes were severely wounded, while the Confederates lost Capt. Titsworth, Lieut. Buffington, and Lieut. McCoy, and four or five men killed, and perhaps twenty (including Lieut. Maurice Langhorne, now of Independence) wounded.

The gunner with the primers of the piece in his possession ran to the rear, and the Confederates were not able to profit much just then by their capture, and so it was hauled off to the rear by hand. Before the Confederates had fairly started on the charge, some of the Iowans said, "Let us get away from here, or they will capture us sure." Capts. Blue and Van Meter drew their pistols and threatened to shoot the first men who offered to retreat, and so saved their reputation for bravery, but lost their gun and their lives'. It is said that Capt. Blue shot down three of the Confederates before he himself fell. Capt. Van Meter also fought well, and it is claimed that had not every officer of the Iowans been stretched upon the ground with fearful bullet wounds, the Confederates would have been driven back.

Capt. Blue died on the 12th, and Capt. Van Meter died on the 14th, after the fight. The remains of both are buried in the National Cemetery. The gallant Confederate, Maj. John Bowman, died a day or two after the fight. Dr. Melcher writes:

 

"The next morning after the fight I found Maj. Bowman at a small house, half a mile east of the Phelps homestead, and examined his wound. He was past surgical aid-in fact, was dying. Two of his men had remained, and were tenderly but hopelessly caring for him."

 

The particulars of the fight for the gun have been obtained from actual participants on both sides. [444]

Late in the evening, at about 5 o'clock, or thereabouts, the Confederates, under the leadership of Shelby himself, made a charge on, or rather towards, Fort No. 4. Jeans' regiment and Elliott's battalion advanced under cover of the houses and the fences and the hedges to within 100 yards of the fort, and then, opening fire, made a brave attempt to fight their way in. But Capt. Phillips' company of militia, the detachments of the 18th Iowa, and the convalescents, opened such a rapid and deadly fire of small arms that the Confederates were driven back, and the attempt to take the fort was not only a signal failure, but a disastrous one.

About sundown and until dark Collins' battery thundered away spitefully and recklessly at the town, and several shot and shell fell into the midst of the city, doing no serious damage, however. One shot passed through the Missourian newspaper office, on South street, scattering plaster all over the room, and knocking into "pi" half a column of advertisements on a "galley." Other buildings were struck, among which were some private houses, but, as the occupants had skedaddled and were safe over in Fort No. 1, and as there were no soldiers in that quarter, nobody was hurt, and Capt. Collins' balls served no other purpose than to furnish relic-hunters with rare treasures.

There was some charging and counter-charging, and a great deal of shooting and skirmishing as long as it was daylight, and after dark there was desultory firing until midnight. About 8 o'clock and at intervals through the night, Lieut. Hoffman, with his gun in No. 4, practiced on the stockade and different portions of the Confederate line until late at night, using shell.

THE BUGLES SANG TRUCE AND THE NIGHT CLOUD LOWERED.

When darkness had settled down, there was an occasional boom of cannon, a pop of a musket and crack of a revolver, but no serious fighting. Some Union women made coffee and sent it out to the skirmishers who had fought so well for the town, and were even yet keeping watch and ward over it.

The lines of the two forces after nightfall seem to have been as follows: The Confederates were in two wings, which formed a very obtuse angle or letter V, with the arms much extended. The point of this angle rested on the stockade, and the right arm (or the Confederate left), extended in a southwesterly direction along the Fayetteville road. The left arm (the Confederate right), ran in a south-easterly course across State street, through "Dutchtown," and past a blacksmith shop, out into the open prairie. [445]

"OH, THAT PORTER WOULD COME!"

Here Marmaduke resolved to wait until daylight, hoping and trusting that Porter would come up or be heard from some time during the night. Along toward midnight, the skirmishing ceased, the Confederate line fell back or was withdrawn to the prairie, and at 1 o'clock on the morning of the 9th a venturesome party of Federals found the stockade abandoned., and they speedily took possession. Some of Sheppard's regiment also advanced about midnight some distance to the southward of Mt. Vernon street, finding no enemy. Details worked all night gathering up the dead and wounded, and bearing the latter to the hospitals. [446]

 

 

MORNING-THE FIGHT OVER-THE TOWN SAFE.

At daylight all was quiet. From the top of the, court-house the Confederates could be seen in motion to the southeast and at Phelps' farm, but whether they were preparing for another attack or for retreat was not certainly known. Gradually they moved away, and the Federal line, which had been prepared for either attack or defense, moved forward, and it was found that the battle was over, that the victory was with the "boys in blue," and that the town was safe. By and by the Union prisoners came in, and a message from Marmaduke was received asking care for the wounded, and a soldier's sepulture for the Confederate dead. The prisoners had been released on parole. Among them was Judge J. H. Show, who, with others, had been captured when the advance was made east of town.

There was a great deal of satisfaction at the result among the Federal officers and soldiers, to be sure. The usual cheering and congratulations were indulged in, mingled with sympathies and regrets for those who had fallen. Maj. Graves, of the militia, had been mortally wounded; Lieut. McCrosky, of the 72d, had been killed, and Maj. Hornbeak, of the same regiment, wounded. Gen. Brown was badly hurt, and it was touch and go whether he would lose his arm or not. The hospitals were well filled with the Federal wounded, while the Confederates were piled as thick as they could lie in the house of Mrs. Owen, in the south part of town. [446]

The citizens began to return from Fort No. 1, and to come up out of the cellars, and order once more reigned in Warsaw. Col. Crabb decided to let well enough alone, and not attempt to follow Marmaduke and Shelby, who were moving out on the wire road toward Marshfield. A renewal of the attack was feared by some, as the prisoners had learned and reported the presence of Porter's column, somewhere to the eastward. The cavalry was ready to advance if the order should be given, but no orders came and only a reconnaissance a mile or so eastward and south was made.

THE 72d E. M. M. IN THE FIGHT.

Space forbids a detailed mention of the part borne by all of the commands in the battle of Springfield. It is proper, however, to describe the part taken by the 72d regiment of Enrolled Missouri Militia, since it was called the Greene county regiment and was largely officered and composed of Greene county men. Its colonel, Henry Sheppard, and its lieutenant-colonel, Fidelio S. Jones, both of Springfield, led the regiment in person, and to them much of the efficient service it rendered is due.

From the personal statements of many of the members of this regiment yet living, and from a private letter written by Col. Sheppard himself a few days after the fight and kindly furnished by his son, Frank H. Sheppard, Esq., as well as from Col. S.'s report, this account has been derived.

Col. Sheppard states that his regiment numbered in the fight, all told, officers and privates, 253 men, represented in Companies A, B, D, E, F, G, H and I, Company C, Capt. Stone, and Company K, Capt. Moore, being absent. At daylight the regiment was formed on the public square. At about 11 it was on East St. Louis Street to repel the expected attack from that quarter. Afterward it double-quicked out on the Fayetteville road. Between 2 and 3 o'clock, and when the grand charge of Shelby's brigade was made, it lay along State street, to the right and south of the palisaded college building.

The men were "double-quicked" about over town until they were almost exhausted before they fired a shot. Gen. Brown had but comparatively few troops, and these he showed everywhere. When the main fight came off the 72d was on the right and a little in front of the Federal line, unsupported by artillery or reserves, with 200 cavalry to the right and rear, north of the Fayetteville road. The Confederate advance was in two lines, dismounted. It was composed of some of the best fighting men of either army. Shelby's brigade won and deserved an excellent name for its dash, bravery and gallantry in action.

Col. Sheppard states that the Confederates came on in a line of convex shape, the point nearly opposite Fort No. 4, and the wings well out. When near State street the line rapidly concentrated and contracted, advancing with a rush through Dutchtown and the brushwood and gardens westwardly, cheering and shouting, and pouring a hot fire upon the 72d, which the colonel had formed alone, the Fayetteville road, or State street, and behind fences, near the then residence of Mr. Worley. The men were lying down, but their curiosity to see what was coming caused every head to bob up and become a fair target. The men now began to fire and a hot fight was soon in progress. In the midst of the rattle of musketry and the pattering of' revolvers and all of the noise of battle, a poor unfortunate calf attempted to run the gauntlet of flying bullets, and when it was struck by a shot set up a loud bawling. One of the 72d sprang to his feet and roared out to the advancing Confederates: "You had better take care of your calf!" A shout of laughter rose audibly over all the din.

But Shelby's men came dashing on, now using their revolvers with serious effect. The fire was too hot for the 200 militia, and they sought to move back from it! There was soon considerable disorder. The men lost their numbers and began to mix up. Col. Sheppard and Lieut. Col. Jones reformed and renumbered them under fire, and got them down and to work again. By this time the regiment had lost seriously. Major Hornbeak was wounded, Lieut. McCroskey was killed, Lieut. Lane's leg was shot nearly off, and the halt and maimed were already thick, and growing, thicker every minute.

Very soon the regiment was again in disorder, and this time it gave way. The men trotted-back in search of safer positions. Col. Sheppard shouted at them and tried to stop them until his voice was gone; Lieut. Col. Jones had lost his horse and was well nigh exhausted, but by voice and example struggled desperately to rally them; Major Hornbeak, wounded as he was, worked vigorously; the commander of the militia and his staff came up and the officers exhorted and threatened, and commanded, but "backward, still backward," went the militiamen until they got under the cover of the hill that slopes down to Wilson creek, and stopped along College street, reformed, and began to load their muskets. One squad, however, led by a commissioned officer, retreated to Fort No. 1, reporting that they were ordered to do so. Major A. C. Graves was mortally wounded while trying to rally the 72d at this time. [448]

As soon as the regiment reformed and the men turned their faces again to the south, Col. Sheppard and Lieut. Col. Jones again ordered them forward. The men set up a shout and moved forward as readily as they had moved backward a few minutes before. Some of Shelby's more venturesome men were along Walnut street, and following somewhat the fashion at Donnybrook fair, whenever they saw a head fired at it. The 72d drove these men away, and pushed on up the hill to near Mt. Vernon street, where the men threw themselves into and behind the houses, behind fences, and into all sorts of shelters and so the fight went on until dark. The Confederates held the college and the line of houses and fences west of it, with Collins' battery in the rear, near Mr. Worley's place. The college building, which the Federals had blunderingly left unguarded, and which the Confederates quickly seized, was a strong position, being of brick and surrounded on the east, south and west sides with strong palisades of stout logs, driven deep in the ground, and well pierced with port holes.

"When the night came on," says Col. Sheppard, "my men were placed in the line of buildings right west of the Baptist church, in the brick Hornbeak house, at the M. E. church South (then the arsenal), in Fort No. 4, to the command of which I was assigned. In the night I had the howitzer in the fort, a 12-pounder, pepper, the rascals in the palisade college building, 250 yards away. The moon shone beautifully and the Dutch lieutenant (Lieut. Hoffman) made splendid practice. The secesh vacated it and at 1 a.m. I put a company in it. All night my boys, in squads, under careful officers, were crawling over the ground to the front, spying out the land, but daybreak showed only dead and wounded rebels before us. An hour later, with Gen. Brown's field-glass, I sat in a bastion and saw the long lines of the enemy working their way eastward from 'the goose-pond,' where they had withdrawn during the night. To only one idea did it seem reasonable to attribute this movement-that the attack was to be renewed from the east and north." [449]

Quoting further from Col. Sheppard the following extract from the private letter before referred to will be found of interest:

* * * My regiment was only 238, [privates] strong in the fight. We lost 53 killed and wounded. The advance of the enemy from Ozark was so rapid that the members of the regiment living in the country were cut off from town and were unable to join us. We have buried 51 of the enemy. About 80 of their wounded are here; they carried away a good many of their wounded in wagons, and of course numbers of their slightly wounded rode off their own horses. Nine prisoners, armed with Enfield rifles, were taken in one house by a squad of the 72d.

Bill Frazier was with them, and badly shot; he is now in the hospital. Lingow was also with them, and so exhausted that he lay down in one of the little houses in Dutchtown, and did not wake until morning. Then, supposing the rebels had possession of the college, he went in and was kindly received by Capt. Small, who sent the gentleman over to me. He is a lieutenant of artillery.

My men are by all looked upon as the men who saved the town, protected the immense accumulations of government stores for the Army of the Frontier, and preserved the communications of that army and the quiet of the whole Southwest. I doubt not that my gallant boys rendered triple more actual valuable service to the U. S. government than Gen. Fremont's entire army and magnificent Body Guard. We lack letter-writers, however, and he had them in abundance.

LOSS OF THE 72d E. M. M.

The total loss of the 72d E. M. M. in the battle of Springfield was 53, of which number 7 were killed or mortally wounded, 45 severely and slightly wounded, and one man reported missing. The following are the names, by companies:

Field and Staff.- Maj. A. C. Graves, brigade commissary, mortally wounded; Maj. John Hornbeak, 72d E. M. M., slightly wounded.

Company A, Capt. Jackson Ball commanding.-Killed, 2d Lieut. David J. McCroskey; Private John N. Cox. Wounded, Corporal Eliisha L. Elam and Privates Stephen Sink, John Davis, Nimrod P. Ginger, Aaron T. Bacon, and D. M. Wallace.

Company B, Capt. R. K. Hart commanding.-Wounded, Sergt. John H. Williams, in thigh; Privates Levi E. Grimmitt, in the ankle, and Jackson O. Hale, in leg.

Company D, Lieut. Geo. S. Patterson commanding.-Wounded, Sergt. John L. Rainey, in arm, mortally; Corporal J. W. Boren, in head, slightly; Privates Silas Dugger severely, W. J. McDaniel in hip, S. M. Gresham in shoulder, Thos. Wilson in foot, Elisha Painter in foot, W. R. Russell in face, H. C. McKee in hip, N. J. Dyer in hip, F. M. Chiping. [450]

Company E, Capt. Geo. A. Dillard commanding.- Wounded, 1st Lieut. W. F. Lane, leg broken (died); Corporals Hiram Vaughn in shoulder and John Hissey in arm; Privates Charles Crane in leg, severely, George W. Townlin in head, Clay Leslie in head, Robert P. Ellison in head, Josiah M. Cunningham in arm.

Company F, Capt. Geo. T. Beal commanding.-Wounded, Sergts. W. R. M. Campbell in head (died); P. G. Perkins in leg; Privates, W. H. O'Neal mortally, W. Braswell severely, Louis Payne in knee, J. M. O'Neal in hand and leg, W. W. Ward, J. A. Hampton, W. R. Norman, Baker Russell and W. C. MoCroskey, all slightly.

Company G, Lieut. Irwin W. Jenkins commanding.-Wounded, Privates W. T. Noblett mortally, and Russell Stokes slightly.

Company H, Capt. Vincent Cummings commanding.-Wounded, Private Absalom Wheeler and Henry Goodnight slightly.

Company I, Capt. J. B. Perkins commanding. -Killed, Sergt. S. Burling; wounded, Privates James Adams, John Watson, Joseph Hursh, John Mills; missing, D. M. Bedell.

NUMBER OF TROOPS AND LOSS ON EACH SIDE.

According to the official reports (cited by Col. Sheppard and others) the Federals had 1,566 men, all told, in the battle. This included convalescents and the men from the hospitals. The Confederate strength was not far from 2,000.

The Federal loss was 18 killed outright some 12 mortally wounded, who within two months, died from wounds and disease combined. The wounded numbered about 100. The total killed and wounded on the Union side, including convalescents, and all was about 125.

The Confederate loss was much greater-how much cannot now be definitely ascertained. The Missouian newspaper, published January 17th, after the fight, said that 32 dead Confederates were picked up on the battlefield, "and those of their wounded who have since died will raise their loss in killed to over 40." Dr. Melcher says that altogether he knows 80 Confederates were buried from first to last. The doctor further says that there were left in charge of four of Marmaduke's surgeons Confederate wounded to the number of 60, of whom only 28 were alive on January 31, showing that only the more dangerously wounded were left behind. Ex-Confederates say that all of their wounded that could ride away did so. Ten days after the battle Col. Sheppard says: "We have buried 51 of the enemy." [451]

The official records show that on the Federal side the 2d battalion of the 14th M. S. M. lost two men killed-E. C. Vanbibber, regimental commissary, and Private S. H. Hyde, Company D-ten wounded, and one missing. The 3d M. S. M. lost one man killed, Simon McKissick, private Company B. James T. Harris, of Co. D, was wounded, and James Pennington and H. S. Rickets were taken prisoners. The 4th M. S. M. had two men killed-Michael Schmidt, private of Company C, and Reuben H. Parker, private of Company K. The 18th Iowa had six men killed outright, five mortally wounded and 42 severely and slightly wounded. Capt. Wm. R. Blue, of Company C, of the 18th, died on the 12th, and Capt. Joseph Van Meter, of Co. H, died on the 14th. Capt. John A. Landis, of Co. D, and 2d Lieut. A. B. Conaway, of Co. C, were severely wounded.

The Confederate officers killed were Major John Bowman, of Jeans' regiment; Captain Titsworth and Lieut. John Buffington, of Gordon's (Shelby's) regiment; Lieuts. McCoy and Steigall of Jeans' regime. (Col. Jeans was not in the fight, the regiment being led by Lieut. Col. Gilkey.)

INCIDENTS OF THE FIGHT.

Will Ridgely, a young lad of 16, had his gun and accouterments taken from him by Col. Sheppard, and was ordered out of the fight, but he mounted the colonel's horse, which he had been ordered to lead to the rear, and galloped off and served all day as orderly to the commander of the militia.

It is impossible to describe the part taken by Col. Marcus Boyd's 74th, for want of information on the subject. It is believed, however, that only three companies of the regiment participated in the fight-Capt. Redferan's Capt. Phillips' and Capt. Small's. Phillips company was in Fort No. 4, and Small's occupied the college building at 1 o'clock on the morning of the 9th, after the Confederates had evacuated. Col. Boyd himself was present and assisted in directing the movements of the troops, etc.

During the fight Col. Sheppard saw a Confederate officer riding a fine black horse. Calling to Will Gott, who had a Springfield rifle musket, Col. S. bade him try his hand as a sharpshooter. At the crack of the gun the horse fell.

It was reported that 27 dead Confederates were buried on Phelps farm; 14 in the graveyard, and that 12 more died from their wounds in ten days after the fight.

It is said that Gen. Marmaduke came near being taken prisoner. He lingered in the rear on the morning of the 9th, and when, at about 9, he left Phelps' house, where he had slept, his command had nearly, all ridden away and left him, and a company of King's 3d M. S. M. was "fooling around" unpleasantly near. [452]

Some of the Confederate sympathizers in Springfield were greatly elated at the prospect of the capture of the town, until Col. Sheppard, told them that turpentine and gunpowder had been distributed in such quantities that if the town were captured it would soon be a miniature Moscow. "I intend to fire my own store with my own hands," said the colonel.

Seven resident printers belonging to the enrolled militia, took part in the fight. Maj. Graves, of the Journal, was mortally wounded, and Corporal Boren, of the same paper, was slightly hurt. Capt. W. P. Davis, the veteran publisher, took an active part in the engagement. Four printers from the Missourian office participated.

The next day after the battle Col. Jas. W. Johnson, with the 26th E. M. M., from Polk county, came into town, and his arrival made the forces already in town feel more secure. The colonel was unable to get in on the 8th, not having time to get his men together.

When Captains Blue and Van Meter were shot down in the fight over the cannon, Surgeon Whitney was promptly with them. Capt. Blue, realizing that he had his death wound, and that his end was near, asked the surgeon to stay with him while he lived. Surgeon Whitney, seeing Post Chaplain Fred H. Wines near, excused himself to perform other duties, saying, "Here is the chaplain; he will stay with you;" but Wines, who was a very active man, and much interested in the battle, breathed but a short prayer for the dying officer, and then said: "Now, captain, put your trust in Jesus; He will stay with you always; I can't." And away went the chaplain into the fight.

Surgeon Whitney and Chaplain Wines were both very industriously engaged. When it was the hottest at Fort No. 4, at one angle stood Whitney, shouting, "Give them hell, boys! Give them hell!" At another angle stood Wines, solemnly but encouraging exclaiming, "Put your trust in Jesus, boys, and aim low!" At the same time the fighting parson was blazing away with his dragoon revolver, and doubtless aiming "low."

One gallant Confederate evidently considered himself sufficiently armored and fortified to capture Fort No. 4 by himself. He charged bravely up alone, till within about fifty yards of the fortification, when he suddenly turned and ran toward the rear. A bullet struck him and he fell in a singular heap. After the fight it was found that he had a large skillet or frying pan under his clothes in front. When he turned to run he seem to forget that his rear was unprotected. The fatal bullet went clear through his body and lodged in the frying-pan.

It is said that one Federal soldier, nominally a member of the 1st Iowa cavalry, was out, on the picket line with Sergt. Garrison, of the 72d, deserted and went over to the Confederates, who greeted him with a great cheer. Apparently the information he gave caused the Confederates to move away from Fort No. 4 to the west.

CONFEDERATE MOVEMENTS AFTER THE FIGHT.

At 10 o'clock on the morning of the 9th, Marmaduke's command was well out on the wire road leading to Rolla, seeking to join forces with Col. Porter. At Sand Springs the advance of Porter was met and a halt was made. Here the prisoners were all paroled and sent back, and the united command began to retreat eastward by way of Marshfield and Hartville. At the latter place a strong Federal force, under Col. Fitz Henry Warren, of the 1st Iowa cavalry, was encountered, and a hard fight ensued on the 11th. Here Emmett McDonald and Col. John M. Wymer, of St. Louis, both were killed and Col. Joe Porter mortally wounded, dying afterward, a week or so, near Little Rock; Maj. George Kirtley, Capt. Chas. Turpin, Capt. Garrett, Capt. Duprey and Lieut. Royster, all Confederates, were either killed or mortally wounded. After this fight Marmaduke retreated rapidly into Arkansas.

The death of the brave and chivalrous Emmett McDonald was learned with regret in the Federal lines as well as in Confederate camps. A desperate fighter when fighting was to be done, he was as kind as a brother and as gentle as a woman when it was over. His kind offices for Federal wounded and prisoners, and his generous conduct regarding the body of Gen. Lyon, a fellow-hero, though an enemy, had won for him great respect among the Union troops, and the people of Greene county and Springfield, Union and Confederate, still admired him for his many heroic, generous qualities. [454]

BURIAL OF THE FEDERAL DEAD.

On Sunday, January 11th, the bodies of the Federal dead were buried, pursuant to the following order from Gen. Brown:

 

Headquarters S. W. District of Missouri,

Springfield, Jan. 10, 1863.

I. The general commanding is desirous that the noble dead who have fallen in defense of Springfield should receive, in their death, that honor which they have purchased with their lives. It is there fore ordered that the bodies of all officers and men who were killed in the battle of Springfield be buried on Sunday, the 11th inst., 2 p.m.

II. Col. Walter King is hereby appointed field marshal of the day, and will make the necessary arrangements for the funeral.

III. Two companies of infantry will be detailed as an escort, and will report to Col. King for orders.

IV. The procession will form at four at Fort No. 4, and move through the square and out North street in the following order: 1. Band. 2. Escort. 3. The bodies of the dead. 4. The horses ridden by the slain. 5. Chaplains. 6. Infantry. 7. Cavalry. 8. Mounted Officers. 9. Citizens on horseback. 10. Citizens in carriages. 11. Citizens on foot. Officers and soldiers not detailed on special duty, will join the procession; they will carry their arms.

By order of Brig. Gen. E. E. Brown

James H. Steger, Asst. Adj. General.

 

Besides the honors thus shown the Federal Soldiers who fell at Springfield, the fine monument, costing $5,000, now standing in the National Cemetery, was erected in their memory by Dr. T. J. Bailey, the well known old citizen of Springfield, whose name so frequently appears in these pages.

DEATH OF JUDGE HENDRICK.

On the 10th, two days after the battle, Hon. Littleberry Hendrick died at his residence in Springfield. He had been sick with a fever for some days, and it was thought that the excitement of the battle hastened his death. Such frequent mention has been made of Judge Hendrick in this volume that it is only necessary to state in summary that he was one of the oldest settlers of Springfield, one of the oldest and best lawyers of this section of the State, a prominent politician and public man, and a gentleman of unblemished moral character. At the time of his death be was circuit judge for this circuit.

CONGRATULATIONS.

Upon receipt of the news of the battle of Springfield, Gen. Curtis, then in command of Missouri, sent the following dispatch to Gen. Brown: [455]

 

Headquarters, etc., St. Louis, 4 p.m. Jan. 12, 1863.

To Brig. Gen. E. B. Brown:-Dispatch of the 11th via Sedalia, received. Your gallant and successful defense of Springfield has added to the glory of the 8th of January. The troops and the people of Springfield who participated in your efforts have given imperishable proof of their loyal devotion to our cause and country, and the State of Missouri will ever cherish your memory.

S. E. Curtis, Major General.

 

ARRIVAL OF REINFORCEMENTS.

The news of the Springfield fight spread rapidly, and soon the Federal commanders woke up to the importance of protecting their base of supplies. Gen. Herron himself came up in a few days and saw that all was safe and snug against future attacks. News of the battle reached the troops down in Arkansas on the 10th. The 2d brigade, 1st division of the Army of the Frontier, was at once set in motion for Springfield. This brigade was commanded by Col. Win. F. Cloud,1 of the 2d Kansas Cavalry, and was composed of that regiment, the 10th and 13th Kansas, and Rabb's 2d Indiana Battery. The brigade Started from near Elm Springs on the 10th and by a hard forced march reach Springfield on the 13th. The march from Cassville was made without stopping to feed the horses but once. The 7th cavalry, M. S. M., Col. John F. Philips commanding, joined Col. Cloud at Cassville and came on with the advance.

 


Dispatches regarding the Battle of Springfield

The following are copies of actual dispatches regarding the Battle of Springfield.

A note: Both sides tended to exaggerate numbers in their favor, such as more enemy fatalities and larger number of enemy troops that attacked.

 

Actual accounts from Military Dispatches

DECEMBER 31, 1862--JANUARY 25, 1863.--Marmaduke's expedition into Missouri.
Volume 22, Part 1 & 2

JANUARY 8, 1863 - Defense of Springfield, Mo.

Report of Major-General, SAML. R. CURTIS, U. S. Army

SAINT LOUIS, Mo., January 8, 1863.Major-General HALLECK,
General-in-Chief:
A rebel force is moving from Forsyth against Springfield. It has taken and burned a mill 45 miles from Springfield, and is still approaching. Things look dangerous, but General Brown was preparing to resist with garrison of about 2,000 irregular troops.

SAML. R. CURTIS,
Major-General.


Page 179 - 180
Report of Brig. Gen. Egbert B. Brown, U. S. Army

SPRINGFIELD, January 8, [1863]--10 a.m. GENERAL: The enemy's advance is on James, 7 miles from here, on the Ozark road. I have our iron 6 and 12 pounder guns and howitzers, which I mounted last night, in addition to two brass 6-pounders at Fort No. 1. A lieutenant of artillery and some enlisted men have been put in charge of them. The convalescents in hospitals, employees of quartermaster, commissary, and ordnance, and citizens of all ages are being armed. The militia are coming in, and by 12 o'clock I shall have 2,000 men in arms. The brick buildings are being pierced for musketry, and I shall have the wooden ones, if attacked. Fifty thousand rations have been removed to the forts. The trains from the west arrived in the night, and those coming from the east have been sent back to Lebanon. I shall fight as long as I can, in hopes re-enforcements will reach me in time to save the stores. I give you all my plans, as I have no doubt the enemy is in force, and will attack me.

E. B. BROWN.[Maj. Gen. SAMUEL R. CURTIS.]


Page 180
Report of Brig. Gen. Egbert B. Brown, U. S. Army

SPRINGFIELD, Mo.,January 8, 1863. GENERAL: Our fight has been confined to skirmishing on the open ground south of the town, and cannonading from one of the forts at long range. I have thought best to await the attack until the last moment, as the demonstration looks like a feint, while the real attack is reserved for another point. The enemy have not shown over 500 infantry, two pieces of artillery, and about 1,000 mounted men. Our men are behaving well.

E. B. BROWN,
Brigadier-General.Maj. Gen. SAMUEL R. CURTIS,
Commanding Department of the Missouri.


Page 180
Report of Brig. Gen. Egbert B. Brown, U. S. Army

SPRINGFIELD MO., January 8, 1863--3 p.m. The enemy are crowding the fighting, but my men are behaving well. Rapid musketry firing in the bush close to the town, on the south. I am holding the strong positions, and as night is closing, the enemy must fight me as I want to, or not to-night. They are fighting for bread.

E. B. BROWN,
Brigadier-General.Maj. Gen. SAMUEL R. CURTIS,
Commanding Department of the Missouri.


Page 180 - 181
Report of Brig. Gen. Egbert B. Brown, U. S. Army

SPRINGFIELD, MO., January 8, 1863--11.50 p.m. GENERAL: The firing at this post has just ceased. The attack was made at 10.10 this morning. The fight lasted thirteen hours, under the command of General Marmaduke, C. S. Army, with 5,000 picked mounted infantry and two pieces rifled field artillery, drawn by ten horses each.
The expedition was fitted in this manner on the Arkansas River for the special service of the capture of Springfield, with its forts and large depots of stores. They moved with great rapidity, marching the last 50 miles in twenty-four hours, skirmishing with my scouting parties almost the entire distance. He moved right up, and immediately commenced the fight by cannonading the town without having given a moment's time to move the sick and the helpless women and children. Our artillery consisted of two old iron 12-pounder howitzers: one iron 6-pounder gun (rudely mounted, one of them on old wagon wheels and without the ordinary equipments for artillery, hand-spikes and wedges having to take the place of elevating screws), and two 6-pounder brass guns at Fort No. 1. The balance of our force consisted of the following-named commands and detachments of commands: Third Missouri State Militia Cavalry, commanded by Col. W. King (453); Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry, commanded by Col. George H. Hall (289); Eighteenth Iowa Volunteer Infantry, commanded by Lieut. Col. Thomas Z. Cook (378); Second Battalion Fourteenth Missouri State Militia, Cavalry, commanded by Lieut. Col. John Pound (223); Seventy-fourth Regiment Enrolled Missouri Militia, commanded by Capt. Green B. Phillips 48 convalescents, organized by Dr. S. H. Melcher, and stragglers commanded by Col. B. Crabb and Captain McAfee (447). Total force, 2,099.
General, these troops acted like heroes. I am too weak from the loss of blood to dictate more.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. B. BROWN,
Brigadier-General.


Maj. Gen. SAMUEL G CURTIS,
Commanding Department of the Missouri.

I will add to the general's dispatch that he was treacherously shot from a secesh residence, while leading a charge of his body guard when the day seemed to be lost.

JAS. H. STEGER,
Assistant Adjutant-General.


Page 178
Report of Maj. Gen. Samuel R. Curtis, U. S. Army, commanding Department of the Missouri.

SAINT LOUIS, MO.,January 8, 1863. Rebels came to outskirts of Springfield at 1 o'clock, and immediately began shelling the town with two cannon. Our troops responded from fort. Nothing decisive. Have directed General [E. B.] Brown to hold out as long as possible. At last accounts the Army of the Frontier was moving east, to cover Springfield.

SAML. R. CURTIS,
Major-General.Maj. Gen. H. W. HALLECK,
General. in- Chief.


Page 178 - 179
Report of Maj. Gen. Samuel R. Curtis, U. S. Army, commanding Department of the Missouri.

SAINT LOUIS, MO.,January 8, 1863. Fight closed at dark. We hold all the forts. Enemy occupy southwest corner of town. General Brown wounded in shoulder. Marmaduke is said to command, and has a large force. They fight for bread. Our troops behaved well. Our cavalry made a gallant charge. Expect the fight to be resumed in the morning.

SAML. R. CURTIS,
Major-General.Maj. Gen. H. W. HALLECK,
General. in- Chief.


Page 179
Report of Maj. Gen. Samuel R. Curtis, U. S. Army, commanding Department of the Missouri.

JANUARY 8, 1863---9 p.m.General BROWN, Sringfield:
You and your troops are heroes. I hope God will spare you strength for to-morrow. I expect a desperate effort early in the morning. All the troops, especially the cavalry, should be ready. Herron started with two divisions eastward from Fayetteville on the 6th. He will soon be behind or near the foe. Don't weary in well doing. The eyes of the country are on you. Your general feels for you deeply. God grant you success.

SAML. R. CURTIS,
Major-General.


Page 183 - 187
Report of Col. Benjamin Crabb, Nineteenth Iowa Infantry

HEADQUARTERS SOUTHWESTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI,
Springfield, Mo., January 10, 1863. GENERAL: Owing to the illness of General Brown, and by his request, I have the honor to submit the following report of an engagement at this place, on the 8th instant, between the Federal forces, commanded by Brigadier-General Brown, and a rebel force, under the command of General Marmaduke:
On Wednesday, the 7th instant, about 3 p.m., General Brown received the first information that the enemy, estimated from 4,000 to 6,000 strong, had forced our troops to abandon Lawrence's Mill; that they had burned the mill and block-house there, and were rapidly approaching this place by the way of Ozark.
Not having a force sufficient at that place to contend with the enemy, they were ordered to fall back on this place, with instructions to destroy what Government property they could not carry with them, which order was promptly executed.
The enemy entered Ozark a few minutes after our forces had evacuated it. They destroyed the block-house, and then continued their march on this place. Messengers were dispatched to the various stations around Springfield to send in re-enforcements, and the Enrolled Missouri Militia was ordered into service.
The night of the 7th was spent in making preparations to meet the enemy. Under the supervision of Lieutenant [J.] Hoffman, of Backof's First Missouri Light Artillery, two 12-pounder iron howitzers and one 6-pounder piece were mounted on wheels, as temporary carriages, taken to the blacksmith shop, repaired, and rolled into the fort, No. 4, by daylight of the 8th instant.
Dr. S. H. Melcher mustered some 300 convalescents from the various hospitals, who were armed and equipped; also near 100 soldiers, who had recently been discharged from the same, under command of Captain McAfee, were armed, and many loyal citizens turned out willingly, and were armed, to fight in the defense of their homes.
At an early hour on the morning of the 8th, about 200 or 300 of the Enrolled Missouri Militia reported for duty. Scouting parties were sent to the south and southeast, for the purpose of ascertaining the whereabouts of the enemy and report their movements. At 10 a.m. of the 8th, the scouts and pickets on the south of the town were fired upon, and driven in by the advance of the enemy. They were soon discovered, some 2 or 3 miles off, formed in line of battle, and advancing slowly across the prairie from the direction of Ozark. About one-half of their command was dismounted, acted as infantry, supporting a battery of some three pieces of artillery (one piece rifled), which formed their center, while their right and left wings were formed of heavy bodies of cavalry.
In this manner, with skirmishers and sharpshooters thrown forward, they advanced steadily and slowly, occasionally halting and firing shot from their rifled piece, apparently trying the range and feeling their way. The cavalry, under the command of Colonel [W.] King, Third Missouri State Militia, and Colonel [G. H.J Hall, Fourth Missouri State Militia, were ordered forward to meet the advancing foe. By order, several houses were burned south of the fort, to prevent the enemy from occupying them, and that the artillerymen and riflemen in the fort could have an unobstructed view of their approach. As the enemy continued to advance, the firing became more frequent. Our artillery opened fire upon them as soon as they came within range of our guns. Our cavalry gradually retired within supporting distance of the fort. The artillery and riflemen in the fort drove back the enemy's sharpshooters. The firing gradually increased until about 1 p.m., when the forces on both sides were fiercely engaged.
Colonel King was ordered to charge with his regiment the enemy's right. He drove them back, when they turned their artillery and sharpshooters upon him. At this time Colonel Hall, with the Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry, by order, moved forward and engaged their center, fighting with coolness and bravery, entitling them to high honor.
The cavalry being exposed in the open field to the fire of the enemy's artillery and infantry, and fearful they would be cut to pieces, they were ordered to retire under protection of the fort, which order was executed promptly and in good order, bringing with them their wounded. The enemy threw forward a regiment of cavalry on our left, which was promptly checked by the Second Battalion Fourteenth Missouri State Militia Cavalry, under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Pound. Meantime the enemy were busy with their artillery throwing shot and shell at the fort and into the houses occupied by our troops. Our artillery, before mentioned, under command of Lieutenant Hoffman, and one field piece, under command of Captain Landis, Eighteenth Iowa Infantry, were driving back the enemy's center; but the firing from the guns inside the fort, though well aimed, was not sufficiently rapid, owing to their being manned by volunteers, with only 5 artillery soldiers at the three pieces.
The enemy about 2 p.m. massed their forces and advanced on our center and right. Captain [J. A.] Landis, with his piece of artillery, was ordered to advance to the front and right of the fort, which order he promptly executed. He was supported by parts of three companies of the Eighteenth Iowa, under their respective commanders, Captains [W. R.] Blue, [J.] Van Meter, and [W.] Stonaker. This piece of artillery, owing to some mistake in the delivery of the order, was placed in a very exposed position. The enemy, perceiving this, made a desperate charge upon it with overwhelming numbers, killing the horses and driving back the support; captured it after a hard and bloody contest. Captains Blue and Van Meter fell, mortally wounded, and Captain Landis and many of their brave comrades fell, severely wounded, while some were killed.
It was now between 2 and 3 p.m. The enemy had captured one piece of artillery; at the same time had taken possession of an unfinished stockade fort that had been used as a prison, and were pressing hard on our center and right. The "Quinine Brigade," which was placed under my command, and which up to this time was stationed in various brick buildings in and around the center of town, was ordered to move to the front and attack the enemy. I had the honor to lead them in person, assisted by Lieutenants JaRhid Root, of the Nineteenth Iowa; [S. A.] Wilson, Eighteenth Iowa, [W. F.] Bodenhammer, Twenty-fourth Missouri Volunteers.
We advanced to the front and west of the fort, and took a position behind a fence and about 50 to 75 yards from the rebels, who were likewise posted behind fences and in and around a house to our front. After fighting for nearly one hour, the enemy gave way and fled precipitately from this part of the field.
In the mean time they were making strong efforts to turn our right, and, after being driven from our center, threw their main force forward for that purpose, when they were met by the Seventy-second Regiment Enrolled Missouri Militia, under the command of Colonel Sheppard; the "Quinine Brigade," under the command of' Lieutenants Root, Wilson, and Bodenhammer and Captain [C. B.] McAfee, who repulsed them. There were also engaged at this time the Third and Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry and the Second Battalion Fourteenth Missouri State Militia, and five companies of the Eighteenth Iowa, two of which had recently come to our support, under the command of Captain [W. H.] Evans. The enemy had gained possession of several houses, and were pouring into our ranks volley after volley of musketry while they were endeavoring to dislodge them. The cause became desperate; the enemy were pressing hard upon our brave men, and they were yielding before the overwhelming numbers brought against them, when General Brown and staff rode forward to encourage them, when he was treacherously shot from a house by some hidden foe, and fell from his horse. He immediately remounted, but was unable to remain in his saddle, and was carried off the field.
This was about 4 p.m., when I received all order from the general to take command, which I immediately complied with. The fighting at this time was hard. It was one continual roar of musketry and artillery. The enemy had advanced to a point beyond the range of the small-arms of the fort; but the artillery continued to pour a heavy fire of shot and shell into their midst, which would cause them to falter, but they would again and again rally. The stockade fort, which they had previously taken possession of, gave them great protection, and in and around which they would mass their forces, and from which they would make their charges. They would drive our men, and then in turn be driven back.
A little after 5 o'clock they made the most desperate effort that they had made during the day to drive back our forces by throwing their whole force upon our center and right wing, but mainly upon the center. A part of the Seventy-second Enrolled Missouri Militia, Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry (dismounted), the Second Battalion Fourteenth Missouri State Militia Cavalry (dismounted), part of five companies of the Eighteenth Iowa Infantry, and the "Quinine Brigade," amounting, in all, to about 800 men, had to oppose the major part of the rebel army, amounting to three or four times their own number; but our troops met them promptly, and fought them most gallantly for nearly one-half hour, when a part of our lines began to give back.
At this critical time, an officer commanding a company in the Second Battalion Fourteenth Missouri State Militia, ordered his men to horse (as I was afterward informed, and the whole battalion came running in great confusion to the rear, and took to home. I tried in vain to rally them; they seemed panic-stricken. This caused a partial giving way among the other troops. I had no difficulty in rallying them, and they went again into the fight.
It was now near dark, and the enemy were making an additional demonstration on our left. By this time Lieutenant-Colonel Pound, commanding, had succeeded in reforming the Second Battalion Fourteenth Missouri State Militia. I ordered him to advance on the enemy's right, which order he promptly executed. The enemy fired but a few rounds, and again retired, leaving us in full possession of this part of the field.
Five additional companies of the Eighteenth Iowa, under the command of Lieut. Col. Thomas Z. Cook, came to the rescue, whooping and cheering, which gave fresh courage to our brave men, who immediately drove the enemy before them and back into the stockade fort. Colonel Cook's troops arrived too late to take an active part in the engagement. Darkness coming on, the firing gradually ceased, after which all was quiet, save an occasional firing from the artillery. The enemy, under cover of the darkness, withdrew from the field, carrying away part of their dead and wounded. I expected them to renew the attack on the following morning.
On the morning of the 9th, they appeared in full force to the east, and about 1 mile from town. Preparations were made to receive them. A cavalry force was sent forward to engage them and check their advance; but they declined another engagement and retired in haste. We did not have a sufficient force to pursue them. We did not have at any one time during the day more than 900 to 1,000 men engaged. The enemy had some 4,000 men, under the command of General Marmaduke, [Colonels] Shelby, Gordon, Gilkey, Elliott, MacDonald, and others, with three pieces of artillery, who came with the full expectation of an easy conquest. They had invited their friends in the country to come and bring their wagons, promising them all the booty they could carry; but, thanks to a kind Providence, brave hearts, and strong arms, they were most signally defeated in their designs of plunder.
The Seventy-second Regiment, Enrolled Missouri Militia, under the command of Col. Henry Sheppard, fought well and faithfully during the entire contest. Companies A, C, F, G, and H, of the Eighteenth Iowa, numbering 156 men, fought as Iowa boys know how to tight. Their heavy loss and bloody record is proof of their valor. The "Quinine Brigade," made up of men from Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, and other States, fought like heroes, Spartans, and veterans, as their respective commanders report. All the troops, with but few exceptions, did their duty.
I cannot forbear to say that to the vigilance of General Brown, his promptness in preparing to meet the enemy, and to his coolness, courage, and personal supervision of the troops in battle, while under his command, we are in a great measure indebted for our success. He has by his conduct endeared himself to those under his command.
Lieut. Richard Root, Company K, Nineteenth Iowa, who arrived during the fight; Lieut. S. A. Wilson, Company I, Eighteenth Iowa; Captain McAfee and Lieutenant Bodenhammer, who were in command of the "Quinine Brigade ;" Capt. W. H. Evans, of Company F, Eighteenth Iowa; Dr. Whitney, of the Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry, who took a gun and fought and the Rev. Mr. Wynes, post chaplain, who, in the face of the enemy, assisted in removing the wounded from the battlefield, deserve great praise for their gallant conduct during the engagement.
I am under many obligations, to Major Steger and Lieutenants Campion and Blodgett, members of General Brown's staff, for the efficient service they rendered me. There are many other officers and men deserving of honorable mention.
We lost 14 killed, 144 wounded, and 4 missing, making a total of killed, wounded, and missing of 162. The enemy's loss cannot be definitely ascertained. Their own estimates of their losses range from 200 to 300 killed and wounded. Among their slain is a major.
We captured several prisoners, and among them are 2 commissioned officers. We buried a part of their dead, and have some 60 to 80 of their wounded to take care of.
I send herewith attached a detailed report of the killed, &c.
I have the honor to remain, your most obedient servant,

B. CRABB,
Colonel, Commanding.Maj. Gen. SAMUEL R. CURTIS,
Commanding Department of the Missouri.


Page 182 - 183
Report of Brig. Gen. Colly B. Holland, Missouri Militia

HDQRS. FOURTH DIST., ENROLLED MISSOURI MILITIA,
Sringfield, January 11, 1863. COLONEL : I have the honor to submit the following report:
On the evening of the 7th instant, Brig. Gen. E. B. Brown, commanding Southwestern District of Missouri, received intelligence from a scouting party, composed of detachments of the Fourteenth Missouri State Militia and Seventy-third Regiment Enrolled Missouri Militia, under command of Captain [M.] Burch, that a large force of the enemy, said to be 6,000 strong, under command of General Marmaduke, were moving on Lawrence's Mill, Taney County, from Dubuque, Ark., with the intention of attacking this place, to capture the depot of arms and stores, and to destroy all communication with the Army of the Frontier and Saint Louis.
Immediately orders were dispatched by me to Colonel [J. W.] Johnson, Twenty-sixth Regiment; Colonel [Henry] Shoppard, Seventy-second Regiment; Colonel [Marcus] Boyd, Seventy-fourth Regiment Enrolled Missouri Militia, to call in all their furloughed men and concentrate them immediately at this post; also to detached companies in Dade and Lawrence Counties.
In the course of the night information was received confirming the report of the enemy's advance. At daylight on the 8th, the troops stationed at Ozark arrived, reporting the enemy had arrived and burned their post, and by 10 a.m. our pickets were attacked, and he appeared on the edge of the prairie southeast of town.
The enemy at once planted his battery and commenced firing upon the town and Fort No. 4, commanding the approach from the south, while the cavalry, consisting of detachments of the Third, Fourth, and Fourteenth Missouri State Militia, were formed on the left of the fort, and charged on the enemy's right.
General Brown formed his line of battle, with detachments of cavalry on the left, southeast of town, a detachment of the Eighteenth Iowa Infantry on their right, Fort No. 4, mounting two guns, garrisoned with Company C, Colonel Boyd's Seventy-fourth Regiment Enrolled Missouri Militia, Captain [G. B.] Phillips, and convalescent soldiers, commanded by Lieutenant [J.] Hoffman, of the First Missouri Artillery, connected with the Army of the Frontier, and a brick college, inclosed on three sides with palisades, used for a military prison, being the center; Colonel Sheppard's regiment Enrolled Missouri Militia Infantry to the right of the college, flanked on his right by detachments of car-airy, with Fort No. 1 about one.half mile to the rear, being the extreme right, which was garrisoned by the Eighteenth Iowa and citizens.
The skirmishing with cavalry on our left, with artillery firing, continued with but trifling loss until 2 p.m., when the enemy extended his left, and advanced his right and whole line toward Fort No. 4. After some sharp fighting, he was repulsed from the fort, but succeeded in capturing one piece of artillery, which, in charge of a small detachment of the Eighteenth Iowa, was advanced too far to the front, the horses being killed and the men compelled to retire with heavy loss. Upon the repulse from Fort No. 4, the enemy combined his attack upon our right wing, composed of Colonel Sheppard's regiment, when the hardest and most decisive fighting of the day took place. This regiment maintained its ground for more than an hour against overwhelming numbers of the enemy's whole infantry, assisted by three pieces of artillery. The two guns from Fort No. 4 played upon the enemy during the latter part of the time with considerable effect.
Colonel Sheppard was compelled to fall back in the direction of Fort No. 1, taking advantage of the scattered houses to continue the fight as they retired After falling back some 300 yards, they were rallied, and made a spirited charge upon the enemy, driving them back south of the Fayetteville road, being assisted on their left by a detachment of Iowa troops, under Col. B. Crabb.
The enemy succeeded in gaining possession of the college building, a strong position, enabling their sharpshooters to check our farther advance until night closed the contest.
Late in the day, Maj. A. C. Graves, of my staff, brigade commissary, who was acting as aide-de-camp, was mortally wounded, shot by a musket ball in left breast; Lieut. D. J. McCrosky, Company A, Seventy second Regiment Enrolled Missouri Militia, killed; Maj. John Hornbeak wounded in arm; Lieut. W. F. Lane, Company E, Seventy-second Regiment, leg broken; Sergeants Burling and Campbell killed, and Sergeant Rainey mortally wounded.
Annexed in hand is a statement of killed, wounded, and missing of my command.
I take pleasure in reporting the valuable aid afforded me by members of my staff on the field, Majors Sheppard, Bishop, Graves, and Clarke; also volunteer aide, Lieutenant Matthews, of Eighth Missouri Cavalry Volunteers.
I am proud to report the bravery of my command, being raw troops, who have been greatly maligned by enemies of the Union and some politicians of the State, and can assure the Commander-in-Chief of their readiness to defend the Constitution and support the Government of the United States and this State, not only with words, but by the sacrifice of their lives, as they have so abundantly proved by their conduct on the now still more memorable day--the 8th of January.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. B. HOLLAND,
Brig. Gen., Comdg. Fourth Dist., Enrolled Missouri Militia.Col. WILLIAM D. WOOD,
Acting Adjutant-General, Missouri.


Page 62 - 63, Part 2
Report of Colonel, James O Gower

CAMP OPPOSITE FORSYTH, MO.,
January 19, 1863.General SCHOFIELD.
Commanding Army of the Frontier:
GENERAL: We arrived here at 12 o'clock this day. I met Captain Julian, Fourteenth Missouri State Militia Cavalry, at Forsyth, with dispatches for you; the bearer also has dispatches for you; and I have directed them to proceed toward Cassville, thinking that they would reach you. The river is 2 feet past fording. The ferry-boat is still here, and I will have it put in order and cross the division as soon as possible. Shall await your orders at Forsyth. Will suffer for breadstuffs in a few days unless we get some; also beef. Forage is scarce, yet we will be able to subsist the animals for a few days.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant.

JAMES O. GOWER,
Colonel, Commanding Third Division.

 

 

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