Arkansas Civil War

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Arkansas in the Civil War: Locations of Confederate Forces

September 15, 2014 By: admin Category: 150th Anniversary Project, Arkansas in the Civil War, The Civil War Hub of Arkansas

Arkansas In The Civil WarOne hundred and fifty years ago in Arkansas, Confederate General J.O. Shelby reports troop strengths throughout the state. Shelby begins his dispatch noting, “It is impossible from the scarcity of forage and subsistence to concentrate my command except when on the move.” He continued with a report of brigade strengths.

According to Shelby’s communication, General Dandridge McCray [sic] is camped 8 miles east of Powhattan on the Gainesville Road; Colonel Dobbins is camped 15 miles south of Powhattan on the Jacksonport Road; Colonels Jackman and Freeman are camped on the Spring River; Colonel Kitchen is encamped at Gainesville; and Colonels Lyles and Rogan are camped on Crowley’s Ridge.

Military actions that took place one hundred and fifty years ago include a skirmish on September 14 at Roger’s Crossing on the White River and a skirmish at Prior Creek on the 15th. For a complete list of military actions that took place during the Civil War in Arkansas, go to

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Arkansas in the Civil War: Missouri Offensive

September 15, 2014 By: admin Category: 150th Anniversary Project by Don Roth, Arkansas in the Civil War, The Civil War Hub of Arkansas

Arkansas In The Civil WarGen. Sterling Price’s Missouri expedition consisting of the cavalry divisions of Gens. Fagan and Marmaduke forded the rock bottomed Arkansas River at Dardanelle on September 7. Federal General Frederick Steele at believed it impossible for an expedition to sustain itself in northern Arkansas, and he was convinced Price was really after Little Rock. This attitude was further encouraged by an advance from Camden by Gen. Thomas Churchill and Gen Mosby M. Parsons. What Gen. Steele had forgotten was Gen. Price had the benefit of numerous wagons captured from him during the Red River Campaign to transport food and forage through a barren country
A week later Price reached Pocahontas, only a few miles south of the Missouri line. The first phase of the raid was successful, having penetrated Steele’s lines and gaining a jumping off point for the invasion of his home state.
Also at Pocahontas, Price’s immense column joined Gen. Shelby late of railroad fame, who was only too glad to leave north-east Arkansas while turning over eight thousand recruits to be integrated into the cavalry corp. Four days were consumed with shoeing horses, distributing ammunition and assigning recruits who were described by one officer as “conscripts and deserters and worthless as soldiers.” Arkansas General Fagan whose division numbered four thousand received most of them. Overall the expeditionary force was undisciplined including Shelby’s division but one historian later noted “Throughout the ensuing campaign they would be the mainstay of the army.”
“The Army of Missouri,” so named by Gen. Price set forth on September 19, and crossed into the state marching in three parallel columns. This arrangement facilitated the collection of forage and kept the enemy guessing as to its objective.
The Campaign to take Atlanta had turned bad for the South with the defeat at Jonesboro Georgia on August 31 and the day following. Among the wounded was 27 year old Col. Samuel C. Smith of Arkansas County Arkansas. He would die three weeks later from remitted fever.
On September 1, the rearguard of the Army of Tennessee filed out of the city which was then occupied by the Federals under Sherman. Twelve days later he issued one of several reprehensible orders that all women and children regardless of age leave the city forthwith. They could take with them what they could carry and they could go either north or south. This criminal act enraged the Confederate rank and file of those who witnessed the pitiable exodus.
The Atlanta Campaign, cost the Union 40 thousand killed, wounded and missing. The Confederacy paid with a figure of 34 thousand in its defense. On the 18th Gen. Hood set off on his raid against Sherman s lines of communications running north from Atlanta to Chattanooga and Nashville. Now was the time for Sherman to assist Grant in the reduction and defeat of Lee’s Army now under siege at Petersburg Virginia. (Albert Castel, General Sterling Price and the Civil War in the West. Louisiana State University Press, Baton Rouge, 1968. Barnhill Sr. and Collier, The Fighting Fifth, Pat Cleburne’s Cutting Edge, Floyd R. Barnhill, Sr., Jonesboro, Arkansas, 1990)

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Battle of Franklin Marker Dedication on October 25, 2014

September 13, 2014 By: admin Category: Arkansas in the Civil War, Living Histories, Memorial Services, Seven Generals Camp #135, The Civil War Hub of Arkansas

Arkansas In The Civil War

Make your reservations today:
We have 15 Rooms Block out for Sons of Confederate Veterans Ark Div
$69.00 Two Beds
Best Western Franklin Inn
2.5 Star
1308 Murfreesboro Rd, Franklin, TN, US, 37064
Call: 615-790-0570

Arkansas Monument Dedication
Franklin, Tennessee
October 25, 2014 @ 1pm
Welcome ……… Ark Div Cmdr. Robert Edwards
Invocation ….J. T. Brown – Chaplin Ark Div

United Daughters of the Confederacy .– Kay Tatum President UDC
United Daughters of the Confederacy .– Jennie Stone Past President UDC

Sons of Confederate Veterans .. CIC Kelly Barrow
ATM Cmdr. – Charles Lauret
ATM Councilman – Paul Gramling
Past AD Cmdr. M. Ray Jones, III

Everett Burr Project Chairman – Past Ark Div Cmdr.
On Site Coordinator … Gene Andrews – Sam Davis Camp Brentwood, TN

Guest Speaker – Thomas Cartwright – Lotz House, Franklin, TN
Stone Dedication Service ….. Past ATM Cmdr. W. Danny Honnoll

Laying of the Flowers – Bobbie Barnett and other Ladies

Three Volley Gun Salute –
Parting Words – Robert Edwards
Benediction ……. J. T. Brown

(Program above is subject to change due to scheduling issues)
Make your reservations today:
We have 15 Rooms Block out for Sons of Confederate Veterans Ark Div
$69.00 Two Beds
Best Western Franklin Inn
2.5 Star
1308 Murfreesboro Rd, Franklin, TN, US, 37064
Call: 615-790-0570

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Confederate Bushwhackers (By Jerry Lawrence)

September 12, 2014 By: admin Category: Arkansas in the Civil War, MOS&B, Research, The Civil War Hub of Arkansas

After the battle of Pea Ridge in north Arkansas, Maj. Gen. Earl Van Dorn was ordered to move the Army of the West to the east of the Mississippi River to help block the Yankee invasion into Mississippi. He left the state of Arkansas almost defenseless not only troops but all weapons, and all other war machinery. Twelve hundred troops, many of which were unarmed were left in the command of Brig. Gen John Seldon Roane, a one time governor of Arkansas and Mexican War veteran. This prompted governor Henry Rector to threaten to succeed the state from the Confederacy. With the Yankee Army moving slowly toward Little Rock, from the north, with 20,000 men, the Confederacy sent Maj. General Thomas Hindman to the state to start building the Army of the Trans-Mississippi. He begin stopping troops, on their way to the war in the east, from Texas and ordered all non-Indian troops stationed in the Indian Territory to come to the aid of the state. Also, one of General Sterling Price’s Missouri division was transferred to the state.

General Hindman issued General Orders No. 17 in which he wrote: “For the more effectual annoyance of the enemy upon our rivers and in our mountains and woods all citizens of this district who are not subject to conscription are called upon to organize themselves into independent companies……….When as many as 10 men come together for this purpose…….they will at once commence operation against the enemy without waiting for special instruction.” They were to attack isolated Federal pickets and scouting parties, to kill pilots on riverboats, and to otherwise cause mayhem behind enemy lines, “using the greatest vigor in their movements.” Hindman succeeded in raising over 5,000 irregular soldiers between its issuance on June 17, 1862 and that August. Many of these band were genuine guerrilla fighters who disrupted Union operations for the rest of the war. Thousands, however, formed gangs of armed thugs that by the end of the war were opportunistically attacking Union, Confederate, and civilian targets with equal savagery. The true legacy of General Orders No. 17 is a record of horror that rivals that of the more publicized and romanticized guerrilla war in Missouri.
(Ref.___”Civil War Arkansas, 1863” by Mark K. Christ; pages 24-25)

Eighteen sixty three and the Union Army occupation brought about a Confederate group of men who was just as vicious as the Yankee Graybacks. The men brought about much misery and added to the total devastation of South Arkansas. Most were Confederate deserters who could not deal with regular army life. They liked the freedom of acting independently and the excuse to plunder the country side. They called themselves “Companies of Independent Scouts.” The Yankees used terms like bushwhackers, and bands of guerrillas. These men inflected untold suffering throughout South Arkansas.
Most of the time when reading about this type of warfare in Arkansas it is about something that happened in the north part of the state. In the Ozarks, but it was just as bad in South Arkansas, especially after 1863.

Like the Yankee Graybacks, the Confederate Bushwhackers were characterized by their merciless, murdering, arson, robbery, rape, pillage and ambushing. Most of their deeds were directed toward the Union sympathizers but there were exceptions. If they saw a fine saddle horse in a pasture, or a mule, they would say “it must belong to a Yankee” and they would steal it. If they knew of a smokehouse that had meat in it they would steal it. It did not matter if it belonged to a Yankee sympathizer or a Confederate. Some of the citizens reported that they were robbed by one army one day and the other army the next day. At times their home were burned leaving them with only the clothes they had on their backs.

Some of these men who rode with the irregular units surrendered when the war was over, others continued their devilish act for several years after the official ending of the war.

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Maj. Gen. Patrick R. Cleburne to be honored

September 10, 2014 By: admin Category: Arkansas in the Civil War, MOS&B, News, The Civil War Hub of Arkansas

The General Patrick Cleburne, Arkansas Society of the Military Order of the Stars and Bars will honor their namesake, November 1, 2014, at the Whole Hog Restaurant, in Little Rock. After dinner speakers will include a short talk by Ron Kelley, who works for the Arkansas Heritage program Delta Culture Center, in Helena, Arkansas. He is also the editor of the internet “Arkansas Toothpick and a freelance writer. He will speak on what is going on in Helena as related to General Cleburne.

The keynote speaker will Danny Honnoll, of Jonesboro, and I am sure his subject will be on the death of General Cleburne considering this November will be the 150th anniversary of him being killed at the Battle of Franklin, Tennessee. Commander Honnell has more titles than we have room for in this news letter but I assure you that he will make this a most interesting program.

Also, each chapter in the Arkansas Society will be honoring three collage students by awarding each a $500.00, one time, scholarship. This is a first for our Society and hopefully something exciting will come from it.

There will be an annual meeting of the Society sometime during the afternoon before the dinner. Time and place will be announced later. Stay tuned-in and start planning to be at this meeting and dinner. We will try every way we know how to make you proud you did.

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Donate Now

Civil War in Helena

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The Seven Generals Sons of Confederate Veterans Camp in Helena, Arkansas needs your help in funding several historic projects. The camp plays an integral part in the maintenance of battle field sites and preservation of historic properties. A donation in any amount would be greatly appreciated and put to good use!

A list of the sites maintained by the Seven Generals Camp:
1) The Confederate Cemetery, where over 120 Confederates are buried, including General Patrick R. Cleburne, General James C. Tappan, and General Thomas C. Hindman.

2) Civil War Helena interpretative markers- we maintain over 50 historical interpretative panels throughout the city, including the battlefield, Confederate Cemetery, General Tappan's home, Battery C, and many other historic sites.

3) Confederate Memorial Park- We purchased and donated to the Sons of Confederate Veterans, Inc. in Columbia, TN approximately an acre of battlefield property that serves as a memorial to the Confederates that fought in and died in the Battle of Helena. Many soldiers are still unaccounted for and this park serves as their "marker". We maintain the park and the costs are mounting in maintenance, an electric bill to keep a light on the 1st National Confederate Flag that flies on a nice 25 foot pole overlooking Fort Curtis across the street.

4) We do living histories often and have a growing number of recruits that want to start re-enacting and doing living histories and interpretative programs. The costs of purchasing new and used Civil War re-enacting supplies are staggering. Any monetary or re-enacting supplies that can be donated would be appreciated.

If you would like to donate used or new re-enacting gear and supplies, we will take any items, even if they need to be fixed or mended. Re-enacting clothing items of all sizes and types needed, including hats. We have a youth program as well, so smaller sizes are welcomed as well. If you would like to donate supplies or equipment, mail it to Seven Generals Camp, PO Box 409, Helena, AR 72342.

The best part is that all items donated to the Seven Generals Sons of Confederate Camp #135's living history program are tax deductible! Upon the arrival of your donation, we will respond with our tax ID# for tax purposes.

Below are a couple choices in donating to the maintenance and preservation of Helena's battlefield:

-Make a one-time donation in any amount

-Make a donation on a regular basis. Those that donate $1000 over time will have their names on a sign of donors on Confederate Memorial Park and you will receive the Lt. William Rector Award, which includes a certificate and a medal. Over time we will start an endowment that will ensure the perpetual upkeep of historic Confederate sites in Helena.

Confederate Memorial Park- Helena, AR

Arkansas In The Civil War

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Because of the valiant support of dedicated individuals across the globe, the money has been raised for the purchase of Confederate Memorial Park in Helena, Arkansas.

We have taken a rare opportunity for the Sons of Confederate Veterans to own a core piece of battlefield and made it a reality! Located in Helena, Arkansas directly across from Fort Curtis and to the side of a Civil War era home (Moore-Hornor Home), both properties of which are maintained by the State of Arkansas (Delta Cultural Center) is approximately an acre of core battlefield that backs up to the site where General Price's troops made an attack on Fort Curtis on July 4, 1863.

On March 15, 2013 the General Executive Committee of the Sons of Confederate Veterans met in Biloxi, MS. At this meeting it was decided that the property will be donated to the SCV- This is a much-needed heritage victory in the Delta!

Your support is greatly needed!
Mail a check or money order today to:

Seven Generals Camp #135
PO Box 409
Helena, AR 72342

Your donation is tax-deductable!

ALL donations are tax-deductible!

The Arkansas Toothpick is the largest repository of Arkansas Civil War history and heritage. Observing the 150th Anniversary of the War Between the States is a task that the Toothpick does not take lightly, as we have posted original and exclusive articles on events in Arkansas on a weekly and chronological basis since 2010 (150 years after 1860). The purpose of the "150 Years Ago..." articles, written and researched by Ron Kelley and Don Roth, is to give a true reflection of the political, martial, and other aspects of Arkansas history leading up to and through the American Civil War.

Boasting of over ONE MILLION visitors, the Arkansas Toothpick has serves as a Civil War hub for historians and the general public. Our FACEBOOK page has nearly 1,000 FB Friends and counting, complete with live updates of

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If you are looking for information on your ancestors or want to locate a lost relative and need a professional geneologist, the Arkansastoothpick reccomends:
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