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History of Livingston County
from The History of Caldwell and Livingston Counties, Missouri. 1886
The 1st and 3d Regiments M. S. M.- Assassination of Col. Wm. O. Jennings -
The Attack on the Medicine Creek Bridge - Poindexter's Raid - The Fate of Some
Confederate Partisans - Joe Kirk and his Operations - Organization of the
Enrolled Militia - List of the "Disloyal "- First Emancipation
In the winter of 1861 - 62, by an arrangement between Gov. Gamble and the War
Department at Washington, the organization of the Missouri State Militia was
begun. This force was to be enlisted for three years, was to be composed of
cavalry regiments, or mounted men serving as cavalry, and was to be armed,
clothed, subsisted, transported and paid by the United States, and to co-operate
with the Federal forces in the repression of Confederate invasion into Missouri
and the suppression of rebellion. It was not to be ordered out of Missouri,
"except for the immediate defense of said State."
Col. James McFerran, a prominent lawyer of Gallatin, became colonel of the
1st regiment of cavalry of the Missouri State Militia (commonly called the
"M. S. M." ), and Alex. M. Woolfolk, a young attorney of Chillicothe
and member of the State Convention, was commissioned lieutenant-colonel. The
regiment was made up of men from this quarter of the State, and a few were from
Livingston. It took the field early in April, 1862, and a detachment operated in
this and Daviess county in scouting the country after Davis' and Joe Kirk's
In April the 3rd regiment, M. S. M., was organized at Chillicothe, with Col.
Walter King, a Chillicothe lawyer and son of ex-Gov. Austin A. King, as its
commander. More than 200 Livingston men at once entered this regiment, which,
however, was never a full regiment and was broken up and the nine companies
composing it distributed among other regiments of the M. S. M. J. H. Shanklin,
of Grundy, was at first lieutenant-colonel of the 3rd M. S. M.
On the evening of the 30th of January, 1862, some unknown miscreant
assassinated Col. William O. Jennings on the street after dark as he was going
home, by shooting him down with a revolver or musket. He died next day in
great agony. The shooting occurred on Calhoun street, a little northwest of the
present county jail. Col. Jennings was one of the best known citizens of the
county. He was the first sheriff, and had served a long term of office in that
capacity. It was he who commanded the Missourians at the massacre at Haun's
mill, during the Mormon War. Although a "Southern" man it was not
generally believed that his politics had aught to do with his murder. It was
believed to have been the work of a personal enemy. At the time of his death,
Col. Jennings was over 60 years of age.
On the night of the 8th of April an attack was made on the guard at the Medicine creek railroad bridge by a party of Confederate bushwhackers. The guard, a portion of the 3d M. S. M., had not retired into the block house, but were seated around a camp-fire near by, when a volley, apparently discharged by eight or ten persons, was poured into them. One man was killed and three others wounded. The unwounded returned the fire, and there was a spirited little interchange of shots, which lasted for some minutes, when the bushwhackers retreated.
Hearing of the affair, Col. Walter King, then in command at Chillicothe, sent
scouting parties throughout the country to search for the bushwhackers, but they
were not overtaken, and their identity was never discovered. They were evidently
a small number of irregular partisans, banded together with no nobler purpose
than to kill a few "Feds," no matter how or by what means the killing
The most notable event, in the line of military operations, in this county
during the year 1862, was the raid of Col. J. A. Poindexter through the county,
in the first part of the month of August. Col. Poindexter had entered the
Southern army at the beginning of hostilities as captain of a company from
Randolph county. After the fall of Corinth, Miss., about June 1, and when the
one year's enlistment of the Missouri State Guard had expired, Gen. Price gave
to a number of his recruiting officers commissions, authorizing them to return
to Missouri and recruit troops for the Confederate service. Among those who came
on this mission during the summer were Poindexter, Cols. Jo. C. Porter, Jo. O.
Shelby, J. V. Cockerell, John T. Hughes, John T. Coffee and Gid. Thompson. It
was stated at the time that Col. Poindexter came from Memphis, Tenn., by
steamboat to St. Louis, and from thence to Renick, a station on the old North
Missouri Railroad. Being disguised, he represented himself to be a Mr. Arnot, of
St. Louis, and procuring a horse he rode into the Randolph hills in safety. He
at once began his work of recruiting a regiment for the Confederate army,
intending when the time came to cut his way through to the Confederate lines in
Arkansas. His arrival in Randolph was some time in the month of June.
By the last of July Col. Poindexter concentrated all of his outlying
detachments, and in a few days, at the head of about one thousand men - who were
mostly from the counties of Boone, Howard, Randolph and Chariton - set out for
Dixie. He designed crossing the Missouri either at Brunswick or Waverly.
About this time Capt. Logan Ballew, Capt. John L. Mirick, and Capt. Robt.
Austin, of Carroll, had recruited companies of Confederates, and were
skirmishing with the Federals under Capt. D. H. David in the river bottoms of
Carroll county. Austin's men, had captured the steamer "War Eagle" a
few days previously. In Ballew's company were a few men from Livingston, and
this company had united with Mirick in the northern part of Carroll about July
27, the two companies then proceeding through Carrollton to join Austin in the
Missouri bottom. In Carrollton they did no damage beyond destroying the office
of the Carrollton Democrat.
The Federals under Capt. David, - whose regiment, the 5th M. S. M., "Penick's
men," had an uneviable reputation and left an unsavory memory - at last
drove the Confederates out of the bottom and they started for Poindexter, known
to be in the northern part of Randolph or Chariton. They passed through
Carrollton without halting, the Federals in close pursuit. On the morning of
August 1, Capt. David came up with Mirick and Ballew, northeast of Carrollton,
and two or three slight skirmishes took place; two Confederates were killed.
Mirick and Bullew passed on, intending to cross Grand river at Compton's Ferry.
David was falling back to Carrollton when he was re-enforced by about two
hundred and twenty-five enrolled militia under the command of Maj. Thos. B.
Biggers, also of the 5th M. S. M. The latter had 100 Ray county militia under
Capt. Clayton Tiffin, and 100 enrolled militia and 10 M. S. M., under Lieut.
Thos. Doyle, of the 1st M. S. M., who had left Breckinridge July 30, and united
with Maj. Riggers at Carrollton. The latter had made a night march from Richmond
to re-enforce David.
The Federal force, now about four hundred strong, pushed rapidly forward and
came up with Mirick and Ballew at Compton's ferry on Grand river. Ballew had
crossed the stream to the east bank, and Mirick was guarding the rear. A brisk
little skirmish resulted. The Confederates were driven across the stream. On the
east bank Ballew released three Federal prisoners which he had captured,
disbanded his men, and made good his escape. Here some wagons, provisions, arms,
camp equipage, etc., were abandoned to the Federals. Mirick, with the greater
part of his company, got across the stream and kept on for Poindexter.
The three released Federal prisoners came over to the Federal force and
reported, and Maj. Biggers camped at the ferry for the night. The next morning
he sent half his force, under Capt. David, up the west side of Grand river to
scour the country, while he himself crossed to the east side with the remainder
of his force, swimming the stream. Riggers scoured the bottoms as far north as
the Linn county line, when he turned west, through the southeastern portion of
this county, swam Grand river again and soon joined Capt. David. Lieut. Doyle
now returned to Breckinridge, while Biggers and David went back to Carrollton.
The morning after Mirick and Ballew had been driven across Grand river, Capt.
David perpetrated an act which called down upon himself almost universal
censure. The previous day he had captured some prisoners from the force he was
fighting, and had also recovered some of the stores which had been taken from
the " War Eagle." Three of these prisoners were named Arch. Austin, -
Walden and Green Wallace. The latter was a young man whose home was in the
southern part of Livingston county.
Ballew had released on parole the three Federal prisoners in his hands, but
the very next morning Capt. David determined to shoot the prisoners that he
held, claiming that they were guerrillas, had fired on and plundered the
"War Eagle,'' etc. Of this charge young Wallace at least was innocent;
Austin may have been guilty.
The men were let out, placed in line, and at the crack of the guns of the
firing party all four fell. Strangely enough, however, not all were killed.
Austin and Walden were killed instantly, but Wallace was not seriously hurt; the
ball grazed the top of his head, bringing blood and felling him to the ground,
where he lay stunned and insensible for some time, and was greatly surprised
when, upon regaining consciousness, he found his comrades dead and himself
comparitively unhurt. His captors and would-be executioners had gone, and he
lost no time in getting away and keeping away from the dreaded "Penick's
men." Afterwards he voluntarily surrendered himself to Col. J. B. Hale, and
was released on bond; but before the war closed he again entered the Confederate
army, and lived to return to his home in Livingston county, and is now a citizen
of Caldwell county.
August 5, an inquest was held on the bodies of the three men killed, by Esq,
A. F. Walden, and the jury found that they had come to their deaths "by
being shot with musket balls by some parties unknown."
From some papers found one of the men was supposed to be Archibald Allen, of
Carroll county. The names of the others were not ascertained. One of the bodies
was that of a man 20 or 25 years of age, with light hair, and dressed in white
flannel shirt, mixed cotton pants, plow shoes, white socks, drab hat, and with
$4 in money in his pockets. The second was that of a man 30 or 35 years" of
age, sandy hair and whiskers, wearing a blue-mixed jeans coat, cotton shirt with
Marseilles bosom, gray tweed pants, brown jeans suspenders, calf boots,
checkered cap, and with an account in his pocket due J. L. Detherage & Co.,
of Carrollton. The third was that of a young man. 18 or 20 wears old, dressed in
a brown jeans coat with the skirt lined with red flannel, hickory shirt, blue
cotton pants, a pair of common shoes, black socks and a drab colored hat.
On Monday night, July 28, a message came to Col. Woorfolk, at Chillicothe,
from Maj. A. W. Mullins, at Brunswick, that a force of 400 Confederates was
three miles east of Keytesville, threatening an attack on Brunswick, where there
was but a small force of 75 Federals. Woolfolk set out at once for Brunswick
with a part of two companies of the 1st M. S. M. The next day Woolfolk
and Mullins with 212 men, including 60 E. M. M. under Cap. Moberly, attacked the
Confederate camp near Clark's mill, on the Chariton river, and completely broke
it up. The Confederates numbered only about 60 men. Eight of them were killed
and a number wounded. No quarters were shown them by Woolfolk's orders. No
Federals were hurt. The Confederates included some guerrilla's, but the majority
designed joining Poindexter, and the company was expected to capture Brunswick
and the ferry when the time came to go South.
Word of Col. Poindexter's movements reached the Federal military authorities
and on the 8th of August Col. Odon Guitar, of the 9th M. S. M., landed at
Glasgow with a force from Jefferson City to take the field against him. Guitar's
force was composed of two companies and four detachments of his own regiment;
about 100 of Merrill's Horse, under Maj. C. B. Hunt; Co. D, 13th M. S. M., Capt.
Ward; Co. D, 7th M. S. M., Cap. Turley, and two pieces of cannon belonging to
Capt. Wachsman's battery, M. S. M.,- in all about 550 men.
Poindexter moved out to the westward at once, designing to cross Grand river at Compton's Ferry and the Missouri at Waverly. His force numbered about 800 men, nearly all mounted, but composed for the most part of farmers and farmers' boys, armed with shotguns and revolvers, and some of them were not armed at all. Their organization and discipline were imperfect, and they were poorly prepared to encounter s fighting force of Federals.
On the 11th of August the hack from Chillicothe to Brunswick, with Richard
Silvey, the driver, and U. S. Deputy Marshal Saml. L. Harris as a passenger,
drove into Poindexter's forces east of Compton's Ferry. The hack and its
occupants were not molested, but Poindexter learned from the latter that there
was no Federal force at the Ferry, and pushed on.
The same evening, about dark, Guitar overtook Poindexter at Compton's Ferry.
A portion of the latter's forces had already crossed the river (by means of the
single small flat-boat and some by swimming) but a considerable number, with
some wagons and baggage, were yet to cross. Guitar at once opened with his
artillery and ordered his troops to charge, which they did. The effect was
disastrous. The Confederates made no fight worth mentioning. Many in their
eagerness to escape plunged into the river and were swallowed up by the waters.
Some crossed in safety; others abandoned their horses and fled on foot. Perhaps
a dozen were shot dead. The cannon caused great demoralization and the Federal
cavalry, well armed and mounted, charged upon the flying, confused masses and
completed their discomfiture. Quite a number of the Confederates were made
prisoners, and many horses, mules, guns and equipment, together with the wagons
and provisions, were captured. The Confederate loss was never accurately known.
Perhaps 80 were killed and drowned; the citizens in the vicinity buried 17
bodies that were taken out of the river. Not one Federal was killed or seriously
The night after the fight Poindexter, with the greater number of his men,
marched up the west side of Grand river a few miles and camped; a portion of his
forces remained near the ferry. The next morning Poindexter, having now about
500 or 600, came rapidly up into the southern portion of Livingston, taking the
road known as the old Mormon trace. Turning westward the Confederates passed
through where Avalon now stands, crossed Shoal creek at Dawn and struck
northward. Crossing the railroad and West Grand river at Utica, they rode
forward to Spring Hill, where they halted a short time for dinner.
It was now Poindexter's intention to march eastward into Macon county and
effect a junction with the forces under Col. Jo. Porter. This was his only hope
of future safety and success. But at Spring Hill he learned that a week before
(August 6) Porter had been disastrously defeated by Gen. McNeil at Kirksville.
He learned, too, that everywhere the newly enrolled militia and the Federal
detachments were swarming about him, and "the dark hour fell upon Saul.''
His only hope now was to save the lives and persons of his men, and to effect
this no plan seemed better than to regain as soon as possible the coverts of the
Chariton bottoms and the Randolph hills.
Setting out from Spring Hill, Poindexter crossed East Grand river at McGee's
mill, passed through Rich Hill township, chip, north of Chillicothe, crossed
Medicine creek at White's ford, and then turned toward the southeast through the
southwest corner of Linn. The greater portion of his force passed Bottsville
(now Meadville) about midnight, and soon were in Chariton county. All along the
march from Spring Hill, and even from Compton's Ferry, there were stragglings
and desertions. During the night march there were a great many. Fatigue and
hunger accomplished more of the destruction of Poindexter's forces than did the
Federals. Tired and weary, hungry and dispirited, and half delirious from want
of sleep, the poor farmers' boys became disgusted with a "soldier's
life" and longed for the square meals and soft beds of their homes.
Mr. H. K. Pearl, a well known Union citizen, and especially obnoxious to
certain Confederate people, was in Spring Hill when Poindexter arrived, and was
pressed by the raiders to guide them to a ford across Grand river. When across
the river he was released, but on his return was chased into Spring Hill, his
horse shot, and he probably would have been killed but for the intervention of
Maj. W. F. Miller, a returned ex-Confederate officer. He was again taken to
Poindexter, who gave him a written pass and again released him when he made his
way to Chillicothe.
On Monday afternoon, August 11, Col. J. H. Shanklin arrived in Chillicothe at
the head of 150 indifferently armed and mounted Grundy county militia. There
mere no other Federal forces in the place at the time, and Shanklin had been
ordered to its defense. The next morning, upon the arrival of the east bound
train from St. Joseph, he was informed by the conductor that Poindexter, with
eight hundred or one thousand men, had crossed the railroad at Utica just as the
train passed. The news was instantly telegraphed to Geo. Ben. Loan, then at
It was not then doubted that the object of the raiders was the capture of
Chillicothe, and Col. Shanklin proceeded immediately to put the town in a state
of defense. He stationed his militia at the best points, collected all the arms
and ammunition in the city, and armed the citizens as far as possible. He also
sent out scouts and couriers to keep him advised of the movements of the enemy.
Two scouts were sent towards Spring Hill, with instructions to go to that place
if possible, and bring back word of the force, equipment and course taken by the
raiders, so far as the same could be ascertained.
Becoming inpatient at the delay in returning of the Spring Hill scouts, but
satisfied from other sources of information that Chillicothe was not in imminent
danger, and that the movement would result in keeping his force between the
rebels and the city, Col. Shanklin left Capt. R. F. Dunn, with the city militia
and armed citizens, to defend the town, and moved with the Grundy militia (part
of the 30th E. M. M.) to Graham's mills, on the Spring Hill road, keeping up
communication with the small force left in the city. At Graham's mills the
Spring Hill scouts were met, and they informed Shanklin that Poindexter's forces
had passed through Spring Hill without molesting any person, and had crossed
Grand river and were moving rapidly eastward. Here also a citizen living on the
Trenton road reported that they had crossed that road still going eastward at a
good gait, though both men and horses seemed greatly fatigued.
By this time it was late in the day and Col. Shanklin received a verbal
message from Gen. Loan, who, with the greater portion of Col. McFerran's 1st M.
S. M., had arrived at Chillicothe from Laclede. This message ordered Shanklin to
take such of his militia as were efficiently armed and mounted and join a
portion of McFerran's regiment on the Trenton road and pursue Poindexter.
Shanklin moved at once and soon came up with McFerran's men, who to the number
of one hundred and seventy-five, were under Lieut.-Col. Woolfolk. The remainder
of the 1st M. S. M., under McFerran himself and Gen. Loan, returned towards
Laclede with a view of intercepting Poindexter, whose direction of march heal
Woolfolk and Shanklin struck the trail of the raiders and followed it all
night long, without food or rest. Next morning, learning that other Federal
commands had taken up the pursuit and were between them and Poindexter's forces,
the chase was abandoned and Woolfolk and Shanklin returned to Chillicothe.
The Federals pressed on after Poindexter, and on the 13th Guitar overtook him
and struck the remnant of his forces on the Mussel fork of the Chariton river,
in Chariton county, dealing them the finishing blow. The Confederates were
thoroughly dispersed. Many of then were picked up asleep and made prisoners.
Some were murdered by the militia, never being given a chance to surrender, and
a few killed after they had surrendered. Poindexter's raid was an ignominious
and disastrous failure.
About the first of September Col. Poindexter was himself captured by the
enrolled militia of Randolph, after having wandered alone through the woods for
several days. Gon. Merrill at first intended shooting him, but Gen. Schofield
ordered him brought to St. Louis for trial. While in Gratiot street prison he
wrote an open letter, which was widely published, declaring the war of the
Southern Confederacy a failure, and calling upon his former associates to accept
the situation and live in loyalty to the State and United States Governments.
This letter may have been the price of his liberty, for he was eventually
released and allowed to return home.
On the 18th of August one of Poindexter's men, a prisoner named Wm. Simms, of Macon county, was shot at Chillicothe. He had been taken prisoner at Bottsville and brought to Chillicothe with others. His body was found in a ditch southwest of town and an inquest was held over it by Coroner R. B. Williams. Sergt. R. Y. Ford, of the militia, testified that he recognized the body as that of Simms; that he was captured August 13, and on the night of the 15th had escaped. The belief was general, however, that the prisoner had been taken out and willfully shot. The body was decently buried at the expense of the county.'
' The papers of the inquests in both of these cases are yet in
the county clerk's office.
In August, about the time of Poindexter's raid, John Bailey, who lived in the
southern part of this county, was taken from his bed at home, carried over into
Carroll county, and shot. No further particulars of this case have been learned,
save that the killing was done by some militia from Breckinridge.
Jesse P. Clark was killed north of Spring Hill, on the 26th of August, by a
party of militia. He had formerly lived at Princeton, in Mercer county, and it
is said was on his way to the Confederate army when killed. He was shot in the
head and back. An inquest on his body was held by Esq. R. B. Moss. One account
is to the effect that Clark had been with Poindexter, and was trying to get
South. The particulars of his killing have not been learned.
Sometime in the fall of this year John Blackburn was killed near his home, in
the northwestern portion of Jackson township, by a detachment of Capt.
Turner's company of enrolled militia under Lieut. Hartgrave. The militia were in
search of Blackburn, and coming upon him he sought to escape, when he was shot.
The operations of Capt. Joseph B. Kirk with his company of Confederate
partisans in this county deserve mention in this history, as incidents of local
interest and as composing a part of the war history of the county which ought
not to be omitted.
After a brief term of service in the army of Gen. Price, south of the
Missouri, Capt. Kirk returned to his home, in Jackson township, with a
commission authorizing him to recruit for the Confederate service. A man of
middle age, with the attributes of undoubted personal bravery, sagacity, tact
and presence of mind, and withal of integrity and good character, Capt. Kirk at
once had the confidence of the people of Confederate sympathies, and in a short
time he had gathered about him quite a company of well armed and mounted men,
some of whom were as desperate fighters as the war produced.
Kirk's plan of operations seemed to contemplate the holding of Jackson
township, or the country between the forks of Grand river, as Confederate
ground, into which the Federal troops must not enter. In the summer of 1861, as
elsewhere quoted, his notices to the Federals warning them not to trespass on
his dominions were numerously posted, and he persistently refused to go South
with his company, but remained to make good his warnings, and as he said, to
protect his friends. His operations were chief of the partisan ranger style of
warfare - the forming of ambuscades, sudden waylays, surprises, and predatory
incursions and foragings on the enemy. While under commission in the Confederate
service, and perhaps entitled to he called Confederates, yet, from their usual
style of warfare, Kirk and his men were called bushwhackers.
In the fall of 1861 the bushwhackers drew the first blood. A band of them
under John Blackburn waylaid and fired upon Lieut. E. West, of Daviess county,
an officer of the 28d Missouri, who was on his return to his regiment with some
recruits. Of this incident, the Lieutenant, now deputy sheriff' of Daviess
county, says: -
I started from my home, in Bancroft, on Sunday morning, October 18, 1861,
with six recruits, a driver and myself (making eight in all), in one wagon to go
to Chillicothe, and from there to St. Louis by rail. When we got within about
three miles of Spring Hill and were just passing out at the eastern border of
what we called Black's Grove, and immediately on entering the prairie (sec. 24),
a band of bushwhackers arose from their concealment, all in line, about 15 steps
from us and commenced firing upon us. We were all unarmed which fact their
leader, John Blackburn, knew, for he had talked with us not more than two hours
before, and knew we had no arms with us. When the firing commenced five of the
recruits jumped out of the wagon and ran through some high weeds to make their
escape. Only two of them were badly wounded; Ransom Shores received two bad
wounds and Jack Duncan four. The driver, John Roe, one recruit, John Shire, and
myself remained with the team and were all wounded, the driver slightly, Shire
severely in the head, and I received four severe wounds. All eventually
The year following a band of bushwhackers waylaid another lot of recruits
going to Chillicothe, under the leadership of Joseph Conkling, at the
northwestern border of the same grove and half a mile from where we were fired
on. Many persons get the two occurrences mixed.
By the early spring of 1862 Kirk and his men had become quite notorious
throughout this county and the eastern part of Daviess, and had given the
Federals no little trouble. They defied all attempts at capture and frequently
fired on small parties of their pursuers. A thorough familiarity with the
country, and the fact that nearly every citizen was not unfriendly towards them
greatly facilitated their movements, and they kept the Federal forces in the
country in a constant state of uneasiness and annoyance. At last a plan was
matured by Lieut.-Col. A. M. Woolfolk; of the 1st M. S. M., for their capture or
At 10 o'clock on the night of May 24, 1862, Col. Woolfolk left Chillicothe
with Capt. Balleuger's company (G) and a detachment of Capt. Perry's (K) for the
Spring of Capt. Perry's (K) for the Spring Hill country. At the same time Capts.
McGhee and Folmsbee with their companies (A. and B.) left Breckinridge for the
same destination. The two detachments intended to cooperate as soon as they
reached the enemy's country.
The expedition was fairly successful. Col. Woolfolk's battalion succeeded in
capturing Joe Kirk, John Cooper, Jr., and James Hale. The detachment from
Breckinridge, under Adjt,. Doyle, Capt. Charles Cooper. Three horses and three
revolvers were also taken some days previously a number of horses had been taken
from Union men in Jackson township, and Kirk's and Cooper's men were accused of
having taken them.
Kirk was taken to Breckinridge and confined in a railroad car with other
prisoners. One night he succeeded in cutting a hole in the floor of the car and
through this made his escape. In 24 hours he was again in the saddle.
On the 5th of August about twenty men of Co B, 1st M. S. M., under Lieut. J.
T. Goodbrake, and about- twenty-five enrolled militia, attacked Kirk's and Capt.
Frank Davis' companies at Diamond, in Daviess county, and defeated them. Five of
the Federals were wounded, and some six or eight of the Confederates The next
day the Federal militia captured young man named Thomas Hicklin, whose home was
in this county, five miles west of Spring Hill, and who had been with Kirk in
the fight the day before. Because he refused to give the names of his comrades
or betray their rendezvous, the officer in command had him cruelly shot to
death. No soldier at Rome or Sparta ever died braver. He unhesitatingly refused
to purchase his life on the terms offered, and calmly facing his executioners
died without a tremor of fear or a murmur of protest. Before he was shot he
wrote a few lines to his widowed mother and two sisters, but the militia officer
tore up the paper. The place of his execution was in Daviess county, 25 miles
from his home, but his two young sisters recovered his body and bore it to the
family cemetery for final interment.
The same day, or the next, Daniel Hale, a brother-in-law of Joe Kirk, was
killed in a cane patch, where he was in hiding. This was west of Spring Hill.
The killing was done by the same detachment that killed young Hicklin, but while
the latter's body was treated with some respect, being decently buried, the body
of Dan. Hale was shown shameful indignity.
After the Diamond Fight Kirk returned to Jackson township. He refused to
follow off Poindexter when the latter came into the Spring Hill country, but
continued to fight on his native heath. About the 17th of August he captured
five Union men, citizens of Jackson township (some of whom belonged to the
militia, and had come here from Chillicothe on leave), at W. G. Eads' residence,
in Daviess county. This was on Sunday, and the following Tuesday a part of
Quirk's company, under Lieut. David Martin, bushwhacked some twenty of the
enrolled militia on Hicklin's branch, northwest of Spring Hill. The militia were
returning to Chillicothe from Grundy county, and some of them were in a wagon.
One militiaman named Joseph Conklin was killed and another named Thomas was
mortally wounded. The remainder scattered in every direction. The bushwhackers
suffered no loss. Kirk himself denounced Martin's conduct on firing on the
At this time Kirk was endeavoring to secure an exchange of prisoners with the
Federals of Chillicothe, and had sent in one man that he held - J. B. Weaver -
with a note to Lieut. Turner, demanding the release of two of his men whom the
Federals had previously captured. Kirk threatened that unless these men were
returned to him he would shoot two of the militiamen in his hands the next
morning at 9 o'clock. One of the men demanded was sent to Spring Hill, but the
other was wounded and could not be sent. Kirk refused to receive the man sent
Matters were becoming serious for the two Federal prisoners in Kirk's hands,
when on Tuesday evening Col. Shanklin, sent a force of militia, out from
Chillicothe towards Spring Hill. In the van of the militia rode William Hale,
Sr., Kirk's father-in-law, and his son, who had been made prisoners, and were
used as hostages for the safety of Weaver and Marion Hicks, the two militiamen.
Col. Shanklin says: "The night after Turner's report of Kirk's capture
of Hicks, my headquarters at Chillicothe were visited at midnight by a young
lady from the forks of the river, who claimed to be a rebel sympathizer, but a
friend of Hicks. She said unless Kirk's wrath was appeased in some way, he would
cause Hicks to be killed. I immediately issued the necessary orders to give the
people of the forks to understand that if Hicks was killed - and whether he was
or not, if Kirk's band was longer harbored and fed in the forks - I would make
the whole country between the two rivers a wilderness, and we would call that peace!
The next morning I sent out two or three companies," etc.
Kirk bad moved down from his position on the Doss farm to the Indian hill,
from whence his scouts saw the Federals approaching with the two Hales
conspicuously in front. Seeing that he was outwitted, knowing that if he harmed
his prisoner's his relatives would be killed, Kirk retired, and the same night
released Marion Hicks unconditionally.
Not long afterward Kirk crossed Grand river with his company and took up a
position on the east bank of the river, in the Van Winkle bend, about four miles
northwest of Chillicothe. Learning of his presence, Col. Shanklin sent Capt.
Spickard with his and Capt. Winters' companies, of Grundy, and Capt. Turner's,
of Livingston, all enrolled militia, from Chillicothe to attack him. Bursting
suddenly upon the bushwhackers the militia routed them completely, driving them
across the river, and capturing a number of horses, arms, etc. One of Kirk's
men, Joseph Allen, was drowned in swimming the river. Some of the horses
captured were identified as belonging to certain Union men of Jackson township;
five had been taken from James Hicks, Sr.
Thereafter the movements of Kirk and his men were practically insignificant.
By reason of the presence of an overwhelming force of his enemies he was forced
to give up the forks, and went south of the Missouri. There he was desperately
wounded, and obliged to leave the service. Bold and shrewd as ever, he made his
way back to this county, and then went to California, where he remained until
after the war. He is now a quiet, well respected citizen of the county.
July 22, 1862, when Cols. Porter, Poindexter, Hughes, Coffee, Cockrell,
Shelby and other confederate leaders were slashing about through the State at
the head of their commands, and when all Missouri was swarming with Confederate
recruits, Gov. Gamble issued an order for the organization "of the entire
militia of the State into companies, regiments and brigades," for the
purpose of "putting down all such marauders, and defending the peaceable
citizens of the State."
This order of Gov. Gamble's, supplemented by one of similar tenor from Gen.
Schofield, had a most wonderful effect in creating soldiers. It brought into
partially active service in this State, on the Federal side and under the
Federal banner, many thousands of men, and it drove into the Confederate or
rebel service fully ten thousand other men who had vowed from the first that if
they were forced to take up arms they would fight for " the
The 65th regiment of enrolled Missouri militia was organized in the early
fall of 1862, and to this regiment four companies from Livingston county were
attached; the six others were from Carroll. The field officers were John B.
Hale, colonel; Richard F. Dunn and, A. J. Swain, lieutenant-colonels; J. J.
Wall, Z. M. Bedford and George Deigle, majors; O. J. Kirby, adjutant; C.
V. Mead, quartermaster, and Charles Heidel, surgeon. The Livingston companies
were officered as follows: -
Co. G was made up of men from Greene and Mound townships chiefly. Its
officers were first commissioned September 4, 1862, and all the companies were
mustered out of service March 12, 1865. Capt. Thomas H. Reid was captain of Co.
G during its term of service. First lieutenants, .Peter Ludwig, till May 20,
1864, then Robert Harrison. Second lieutenants, Joseph T. Hillock, till May 20,
1864, then Ashford A. Stone.
Co. H was from Chillicothe. The first captain was R. F. Dunn, promoted to
lieutenant-colonel November 8, 1862, then Robert S. Moore; First
lieutenants, A. J. Swain, promoted to lieutenant-colonel October 5, 1868, then
John Desha. Second lieutenants, Robert S. Moore, promoted to captain October 30,
1862, then Hardin R. Wright.
Co. I was from Spring Hill and Jackson township. Captain, Henry H. Turner
from September 30, 1862 to 1864. First lieutenant, Henry H. Turner from July 28
to September 80, 1862; then G. B. Lyon to September 25, 1868; then Lemuel
Hargrave. Second lieutenant, David Gibbs; served in 4th Provisional regiment
from April 3 to November 22, 1863.
Co. K was from Fairview township and south of Grand river. Captain, Wm.
Barnes, from September 27, 1862; served as captain of Co. K, 4th Provisional,
from April 28 to November 22, 1863. First lieutenant, Drury N. Mathews. Second
lieutenant, J. H. H. Kincaide.
It is proper to say of the Livingston county enrolled militia that the
service they rendered the Union cause from first to last was very important, and
that their conduct was uniformly good. They obeyed promptly every demand upon
them for their services, and often made sacrifices in doing so. Their service
was arduous, dangerous and peculiarly unpleasant. To be compelled to war on many
of their old neighbors and former friends was certainly not agreeable, and this
they were compelled in many instances to do. To attack the bushwhackers. in
their chosen haunts was certainly perilous, and their long, hard rides and
marches were always exhaustive.
The outrages perpetrated by certain of the militia stationed in this county
may not be laid at the doors of the enrolled militia of Livingston, except in
few cases. They were nearly always the work of men from other counties. Savage
fighters there were among the Livingston men - men who did not make war a
pastime, but there were the merest few who were murderers and robbers. In at
least two instances men were dishonorably discharged from the service for
conduct that would have been winked at by the officers of other militia
organizations. The writer has been assured by many persons of former Confederate
sympathies that the uniform conduct of the home militia was altogether as good
as might have been expected; and the fact that many of the ex-members of the E.
M. M. yet reside in the county and are among its best and most respected
citizens, seems corroborative of these statements.
But as to the conduct of certain of the militia of other counties, it is
perhaps best to pass it by without comment, since the war has been over for
twenty-one years, and by-gones of this kind are not pleasant subjects for either
discussion or reflection.
Pursuant to "General Order No. 24" the citizens of Missouri liable to military duty were required to present themselves before the authorities and enroll as either "loyal" or "disloyal" to the United States and State Governments. Under this order the following citizens of Livingston county were enrolled as disloyal: -
Headquarters, St. Louis, August 4, 1862.
General Orders, No. 24.
*** All the loyal men of Missouri subject to military duty will be organized into companies, regiments and brigades. * * *
All disloyal men, and those who have at any time sympathized with the rebellion, are required to report at the nearest military post or other enrolling station, be enrolled, surrender their arms, and return to their homes or ordinary places of business, where they will be permitted to remain so long as they shall continue quietly attending to their ordinary and legitimate business and in no way give aid or comfort to the enemy. Disloyal persons, or sympathizers with the rebellion will not be organized into companies, nor required nor permitted to do duty in the Missouri militia.
By order of
C. W. Marsh, Asst. Adjt.-General,
|Thos. B. Alnutt||James L. Alnutt||John M. Austin|
|Stephen Alnutt||Crockett Austin||Alex. Austin|
|Robert Alnutt||Andrew Austin||Edwin Austin|
|Joseph N. Alnutt||Wm. C. Austin||J. W. Albrittan|
|John T. Alnutt||Spence H. Austin||Andrew Allen|
|Marion Anderson,||Elliott Curtis,||John R. Garmon|
|John A. Adams,||Bainbridge Curtis,||G. A. Goben|
|Wm. J. Aiken,||James C. Chadd,||J. H. Gitthews|
|Wm. Auberry,||John D. Custard,||Wm. Gee|
|Ira Benson,||M. B. Call,||Joseph Gill|
|H. A. Booker,||John H. Cooper,||H. L. Glaze|
|P. Blankenship,||John G. Cooper,||John Gregg|
|Jacob L. Brenett,||Geo. W. Coates,||Howard T. Gann|
|James V. Blankenship||Jas F. Coates,||Thos. Gann|
|Thos. E. Brennel,||Lawson B. Carter||Saml. Gann|
|David Breese,||Alex. H. Carlisle||Adam C. Gann|
|Isaac Blann,||John H. Carlisle||Abraham Gann|
|T. R. Bryan, Jr.,||Lafayette Carlisle||Andrew J. Green|
|Nathan Baker,||B. B. Carr||John Griffin|
|Isaac W. Babcock,||Robt. Cooper||Joseph Graham|
|John B. Bedell,||David Caddell||Alex. Galbraith|
|Wm. W. Black,||James Condron||Joshua Gibbons|
|Henry M. Brown,||Joseph Clark||James Glenn|
|Henry T. Brown,||Evan Cloud||F. T. Green|
|Winton Brown,||Calvin Carter||Wm. Holland|
|John Brown,||Andrew Craig Jr.||Winfield Hood|
|Absalom Brown||Wm. Cloud||Napoleon Hood|
|Spence C. Brown||David Dryden||James P. Haynes|
|David Bradford||A. Darmitten||Harry Hutchinson|
|John Bradford||Wm. L. Dryden||lames J. Horton|
|Myers Burton||Robert Duckworth||Joseph Hurst|
|Athan A. Ballew||Joseph Darnold||George Hoskins|
|Thos. R. Ballew||Jas. H. Duncan||James Hosman|
|Abraham Blann||Saml. T. Darr||Wm. P. Munro|
|John Burton||Columbus England||Henry Hendricks|
|John P. Boyle||Thos. Edrington||Wm. O. Hobbs|
|James Baugh||D. L. Edrington||Solomon Hendricks|
|James P. Breese||John B. Elliton||Thos. J. Howell|
|John F. Boley||Leroy T. Ewing||Warren Hudgins|
|John Bolivar||Wm. M. Ewing||John Hamblin|
|Luther T. Collier||Andrew Ferguson||Jesse Hill|
|Ezariah Cox||Saml. Forester||John Harris|
|Stephen Cox||W. P. Frazier||Geo. Hooker|
|Andrew Cox||James Frazier||Forester Hensley|
|James M. Cox||Henry Frazier||John D. Hutchinson|
|Wm. H. Cox||John Frazier||David Ingleman|
|B. F. Cox||Burrill Frasure||John R. Ireland|
|Sanford A. Crouch||Benj. Ferguson||Fred. Jones|
|M. H. Comstock||John W. Garr||Jas. N. Jackson|
|Felix W. Comstock||David Girdner Jr.||M. M. Johnson|
|Lewis B. Comstock||Wash. J. Gibbons||John L. Johnson|
|Gilbert Comstock||James Gibbons||Abel Johnson|
|Jerome Chadd||Nathan Gibbons||Thos. M. Jones|
|Chas. Clark||Albert Gibbons||E. Kirtley|
|Lafayette King,||John Murrell,||Obed Shipp,|
|Jas. W. King,||J. H. H. Matson,||David Stager,|
|Wash. N. Kinney,||Fred. F. Menefee,||Wm. Senton,|
|Robt. S. Knox,||Geo. B. May,||Wm. J. Stafford|
|John S. Kinney,||P. T. McGee,||Benj. F Smith|
|Benj. F. Knox,||C. M. Mitchell,||James Smith|
|Wiley Linville,||Kernper McDonald,||Robert Stewart|
|W. T. Lucas,||Thos. C. Nye,||Hiram Snead|
|Willis W. Lucas,||J. J. Nabors,||Chas. W. Singleton|
|John W. Lisle,||John Newcomb,||Thos. Trammell|
|Jas. W. Lauter,||Geo. B. Nave,||Anderson Todd|
|John P. Leeper,||Wm. C. Norman,||John W. Tinsley|
|Davidson Lawson,||Elias Norman,||W. G. Todd|
|Isham P. Lisle,||B. F. Norman,||Jasper Todd|
|John Lucas,||Jesse B. Nave,||Wm. Todd|
|S. Liggett,||John Newcomb,||W. P. T. Thompson|
|Jas. A. Lilly,||Thos. E. Oliver,||Robt. H. Turner|
|Andrew B. Liggett,||Wm. P. Overton,||James Turner|
|Geo. L. Lydick,||Wm. Peters,||Alfred Turner|
|James R. Leeper,||Thos. Preston,||Albert S. Turner|
|P. M. Marlow,||Jas. S. Pepper,||John S. Tunnell|
|A. J. McDonald,||Thos. Roberts,||James Vaughn|
|Wm. H. Mitchell,||Wm. Reese,||John A. Wingo|
|Stephen J. McCormick||James Ramsay,||Pratt B. Walker|
|Jas. L. Marlow,||John Reese,||John W. Williams|
|Jas. McToney,||Jere Reynolds,||Geo. W. Wolfskill|
|Wm. McVay,||B. F. Randall,||A. J. Wolfskill|
|A. C. Marlin,||Washington Ryan,||Henderson Wheeler.|
|Abraham McClure,||H. N. Richardson,||Saml. J. Wallace|
|Wm. McClure,||Thos. Ryan,||Thaddeus Warden|
|Crockett McDonald,||Henry Reynolds,||James Warden|
|Richard U. May,||Oscar Robertson,||W. W. Wilson|
|James Manning,||Alex Ramsay,||Benj. L. Wilson|
|Wm. F. Miller,||E. G. Simpson,||Chas. Wilburn|
|Geo. Martin,||Reuben Samuels,||Geo. W. Wingo|
|P. M. Marlow,||John W. Snead,||Robt. J. Walker|
|John A. Mosely,||John Snead,||Geo. H. Walker|
|D. M. Marlow,||Edward Snead,||Wm. Walker|
|John Miller,||Sebron Snead,||Scott H. White|
|U. P. Morrow,||Wm. Shumate,||Jackson Yates|
|Wm. Montgomery,||Wm. Stevens,||John Yates|
|Andrew McCoskrie,||Wm. C. Samuel,|
|Chas. H. Mansur,||Dan. H. Singleton,|
October 18, 1862, the first public meeting in Livingston county favoring the
emancipation of slaves was held at Chillicothe. S. P. Mountain was chairman and
Dr. A. S. Hughes secretary. A committee composed of Thos. E. Jones, Benj. Toner,
Esq. Minor, A. J. Greenwell and H. S. Harbaugh reported the following
resolutions, which were unanimously adopted: -
Whereas, We, loyal citizens of Livingston county, in mass meeting assembled, viewing with distrust and mortification the present condition of our once happy country, - and believing it to be the duty and interest of every citizen to put forth his every energy to stay the tide of fanaticism growing out of party, personal and sectional animosity, by the adoption and support of such a State and National policy as will harmonize the great interests of the American people - do hereby resolve:
1. That we are in favor of a restoration of the Union to its original integrity, and of securing to every part thereof every constitutional right;
2. That we believe it to be the duty and to the interest of the State of Missouri to adopt the policy of gradual emancipation, with compensation to loyal owners of slaves, as indicated by President Lincoln in his address to the Border States;
8. That we nominate a full ticket for state and county officers on this
policy, and pledge ourselves to use all lawful means to secure their election.
Speeches were made by Lieut. L. S. McCoy and Dr. J. H. Ellis, and the latter was nominated for State Senator from this district, then composed of Livingston, Linn, Sullivan and Putnam counties.