First Regiment

Missouri State Militia Cavalry

Operations 1863


Regimental Roster



Date National Events Regional Events  Organization of the First MSM Cav. Reports or Correspondence Related to the First Missouri State Militia Cavalry
January 1 Emancipation Proclamation becomes final      
March     Headquarters at Independence until April, 1863.   
April     Headquarters at Harrisonville until May, 1863.  
May 18      Headquarters at Warrensburg until June, 1863

Company "L" organized in Andrew and Buchanan Counties and attached May, 1863.


Hog Island 

Major: I have just returned from an extensive scout over the Osage River, in the southern part of Bates County.  On the night of the 17th, I received a message from Captain [Charles F.] Coleman, of the Ninth Kansas Cavalry, stationed at Butler, that he has found a large body of rebels about 8 or 10 miles south of Butler, and over the main branch of the Osage River, who were in a very strong position, and asked my assistance with all the available force I had at hand to co-operate with his force, and on the morning of the 18th, at sunrise, he would make the attack.  By this time I had reached Papinsville, as arranged between Captain Coleman and myself, and from thence proceeded up the river and in the neighborhood of the rebel encampment.  I found the most of Captain Coleman's command (the captain with a few men were out hunting my command).  Captain Coleman had about 115 men of the Ninth Kansas Cavalry, but from some maneuvering of some rebel pickets he concluded they were too strong to attack.  I took command and proceeded to the rebel encampment, but found, on arriving there, that the large force supposed to be there numbered just 2 who were killed, and their arms, horses, &c., taken by the Kansas troops.  

This place seems to have been used by the bushwhackers for a great while.  They must have used it the greater part of last winter from appearances.  The bushwhackers repulsed 60 of the Kansas troops and Enrolled Missouri Militia there a few days ago.  From the appearances, and all the information I could gather, at least 100 bushwhackers have been for some time making that encampment their place of rendezvous. They claim to belong to one Colonel Parker's command.  Parker keeps his headquarters in Jackson County, and I am inclined to think he is organizing a force all along the border.  Alex. W. Mullins, Major First Missouri State Militia Cavalry  (WR XXXIV: 334).



Monigan Creek

Sir: On the 21st instant I sent out a scout from Companies F and G, numbering 30, with Captain Moore, of Company F, and Lieutenant Groomer, of Company G.  The next day they came upon a band of rebels on Monigan, or some such creek.  Dismounted, unobserved by the rebels, and approached within 75 yards of them, and opened fire.  Without returning the fire, the rebels sought safety by running.  The creek being between the two parties, it became necessary for our men to remount, in order to pursue, and by the time they were over the creek the rebels were out of sight.  One little boy, who was with the rebels, remained on the ground.  Captain Moore brought him into camp.  in the melee our men captured 20 horses and some number of saddles, bridles, &c., 2 Mississippi rifles, 1 carbine, and 1 double-barrel shot gun, and a number of saddle bags, a variety of clothing, &c.  There were only 22 of the rebels; hence they only got away with 2 horses.  From the trails of blood, several were wounded, and could have been easily followed had not, unfortunately, a heavy rain come on just at the time, and also night.  These two difficulties baffled all further successful pursuit, and the captain gave up the chase for the night.  Yesterday, the 23d another scout I sent into the same neighborhood, found horse belonged to an Enrolled Militia man, and was stolen only a few days before by the bushwhackers.  My command yesterday shot and killed a very bad bushwhacker.  I learn he was guilty of all manner of crimes, stealing, robbing, and and bushwhacking, and last, but not lest, rape upon the wife of a loyal man belonging to the Enrolled Missouri Militia.  This property we have captured is here, subject to orders, and now in the custody of a sergeant or acting quartermaster. I have mounted some of my men out of these horses, they giving receipts for them.  I can use, perhaps, all of them in this way; and, in fact, it is very difficult to keep the men all mounted, and such a thing as buying a cavalry horse is next thing to impossible.  

The boy we have here is a captive; is about fourteen years old, but is very small.  He represents that he and his brother, who escaped, left Texas about six weeks ago for the purpose of hunting their father.  This boy's brother is a year older than the one we have.  he says they have been in Texas four or five years, living with their grandfather; that their mother is dead, and that they have not heard from their father for two or three years, not since the war began; that they have some relatives in Kansas and some in Marion County, Illinois.  he says they met with this band of rebels at Pineville, and started from there last Monday.  He ways there were 200 or more rebels at Pineville, and more gathering in daily; that there are rebels now in the State sent up from the south, arranging for forage and subsistence for their army.  he says he heard the men that he was with say so.  some of this band formerly resided in northern Missouri, from the names the boy gives; and a miniature, captured, is the likeness of a young lady residing Linn County. 

Alex. W. Mullins, Major First Missouri State Cavalry. (WR XXXIV: 295)


June 17      Headquarters at Lexington until October, 1863.


Near Wellington 

Sir: I have the honor to report that at 1 o'clock yesterday morning Lieutenant [John H.] Smith, Company I, First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, with 50 men of the different companies here, fired upon a party of 4 bushwhackers, killing 3.  This was near Wellington, where they had just left after robbing a store.  

I sent this party out to watch the roads, and it is the only way we can get at the scoundrels, and I shall continue to pursue this course, unless disapproved by you, and for that reason would rather that no troops be sent into this county without my being advised of it.  B. F. Lazear, Lieutenant-Colonel, Comdg. First Missouri State Militia Cavalry. (WR XXXIV: 373)




Skirmish near Papinsville  (Detachment).

Sir: I have the honor to report that, on the morning of the 23d instant, Major [Alexander W.] Mullins, in command of a detachment of the First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, from Germantown, followed a band of rebels, about 50 in number, to the Osage River, near Papinsville, Bates County, where they crossed the river, going south.  Pursuit was kept up for some 12 miles south of the river, when the party were overtaken by Major Mullins' advance.  A skirmish ensued, resulting in the killing of 1 rebel and wounding 1, and capture of 1 Enfield rifle, with 40 rounds of cartridges, 1 horse, and 1 mule.  It was now night, and the rebels fled and were lost sight of.  Major Mullins had 1 man badly, if not mortally, wounded.  B.F. Lazear, Lieutenant-Colonel, Comdg. First Missouri State Militia Cavalry (WR XXXIV: 377).


July 1-3 Battle of Gettysburg      
4 Vicksburg Surrenders      
12     Regiment attached to District of the Border, Dept. of Missouri, to January, 1864. 

Company "M" organized in Worth and Gentry Counties and attached July, 1863.




Trouble at Warrensburg

Sir: Your telegram of the 24th, making inquiries about the situation of affairs in Johnson county, received, and in reply will state that immediately on my return from Warrensburg i made the following report, as near as i can recollect.  Owing to carelessness the report was not recorded.

In compliance with your telegram of the 10th, which was not received until 5 p. m., 11th, I proceeded, on the 12th, with Companies I and k, First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, to Warrensburg, reaching that place same evening, and on the 14th the two companies of the Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry marched for Kansas City.  i found a very bad state of affairs there; a great many outrages and murders had been committed; but as your order was to arrest the ringleaders, i found it very hard to find out who were the ringleaders in these depredations, as they were mostly committed by irresponsible persons, who would frequently go out with soldiers and commit these outrages.  The minds of some of the soldiers had been worked upon by bad, designing men until they had become so incensed against some of the best Union citizens that they had to leave their houses for their own safety.  Under these circumstances, i concluded that it was best to make no arrests for the present.  it is very well known who the leaders of this party are, but they disclaim having anything to do with the outrages.  There have been but few murders or other outrages committed there but what can be clearly proven who the guilty parties are, but to do that it will require some time, and must be done by some one whom the people will have confidence in their staying long enough to make a full investigation and bring the guilty parties to punishment.  There are women these whose husbands have been murdered, but owing to threats, and the frequent removals and changes of commanding officers, they are afraid to give their testimony.  There has been a perfect reign of terror existing there, but I am satisfied that all will go well while our men remain there, as they cannot be induced to take any part in the personal difficulties of the citizens there, and Captain Burris, who is in command, is a good man, and will put a stop to all such outrages as have been heretofore committed by the aid of, and in many instances by, a dissatisfied soldiery.

The above, I think, is about the substance of my former report, which, I hope, you will receive.  I will add that since my return from there some four citizens, who are the leaders of the party spoken of, have been arrested by the Enrolled Missouri State Militia, and sent to Saint Louis by order of the provost marshal general of the department.  I think their arrest was caused by their illegal proceedings in carrying out the assessment order issued by General Schofield last summer.  I receive communications from Captain Burris almost daily.  Our men are doing good work there, and I am happy to report that a better state of affairs exists in that section than did a short time ago.  

B. F. Lazerar, Lieutenant-Colonel, Comadg.  First Missouri State Militia Cavalry. (WR XXXIV: 38-9).

Corinth, July 20, 1863  Col. Aug. Mersy:  Any band of rebels or single person caught interfering with the railroad or telegraph, in any way, who are not regularly in the Confederat service, shoot on the spot.  I don't want any prisoners of that kind.  G. M. Dodge  (WR XXXVI: 538)



Skirmish Near Lexington 

General: I have the honor to report that, on the 29th instant, captain [H. F.] Peery, company K, of the First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, with a detachment of 27, of Companies K, C, and I, of said regiment, together with 15 men of Enrolled Missouri Militia, left this post as an escort for the paymaster (Major Smith) en route for Marshall, in Saline County, distant about 40 miles.  The Enrolled Missouri Militia having arms under escort for Freedom Township, in this county, left Captain Peery about 20 miles below here, and the paymaster's escort continued their march for about 5 miles, and put up for the night.  The next morning, Captain Peery's command was attacked by about 100 guerrillas, under Blunt and Braves, and, after a sharp conflict, were repulsed, with the loss of 2 horses and 3 men mortally wounded.  Captain Peery lost 1 man mortally wounded and 7 horses.  The paymaster reached his destination in safety.  James McFerran, Colonel, Commanding First Missouri State Militia Cavalry (WR XXXIV: 465).


30     Distribution of command  

Germantown, Mo., Companies G, G, and H, Maj. Alexander W. Mullins; Lexington, Mo., (four companies), Lieut. col. Bazel F. Lazear; Taberville, Mo., Companies A, D, and E, Maj. Joseph H. McGhee; Warrensburg, Mo., Company C, Capt. Andrew Jackson (WR XXXIV: 343)


August 2       

Skirmish at Stumptown   

Colonel: I returned to camp yesterday evening, having been out on a scout four days with 100 men of Companies F, G, and H, under my command at this station.  On Sunday evening (the first day out) we had a skirmish with a squad of bushwhackers at Stumptown, on the double Branches, Bates County, in which Private John S. Luyster, of Company F, First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, was killed.  We routed the bushwhackers in short order, but did not succeed in killing a single one.  I ascertained afterward that two or three of them were wounded.  The next day we drove some twenty or more across the Marais-des-Cygnes, or Big Osage, very precipitately, causing them to swim the stream at a very uninviting place.  The next day we followed in pursuit as far as the Marmiton (southwest branch of the Osage); but, in consequence of high water, we did not go further.  Yesterday, in returning to camp, we had several chases after straggling bushwhackers, but did not succeed in accomplishing anything.  We captured during the trip 4 horses, which the bushwhackers were forced to leave.  One of the horses belonged to a loyal citizen of Bates County, and was stolen about one month ago, which I have restored to his owner.  Marchbanks and Handcock, with their bands, have retired south of the Osage and of Bates County, and between the Osage and Grand Rivers.  There are now comparatively few of them around, but bands of from 200 to 500 men are passing very frequently, I will safely say every night.  Owing to great fatigue, caused by hard riding and excessive hot weather, I am scarcely able to write this morning. Alex. W. Mullins, Major First Missouri State Militia Cavalry (WR XXXIV: 544)



Scout from Lexington to Hopewell  

 General: I have the honor to state that, pursuant to your directions by telegraph of the 6th instant, I left this post at 10 p. m. on the night of the 6th instant, with all the available force at this post, being 150 men and three pieces of light artillery, to make the point suggested.  We took up the line of march for Wellington.  The night was very dark, and the rain descended in torrents.  We continued our march, and were delayed in crossing the Big Sni, east of Wellington.  We, however, passed through Wellington before daylight, and continued our march to Texas Prairie.  About 11 o'clock we reached Eagin's Point, and there saw a small band of bushwhackers, who fled at our approach.  While reconnoitering, to ascertain the point described in your telegram, another band of about 30 came in sight, going in the direction of Eagin's Point.  As soon as they saw our force, they fled in an easterly direction.  I sent out scouting parties, with a view of ascertaining the position of the enemy, and ascertained that there were but few in the immediate vicinity of Eagin's Point, which is about 3 miles northeast of Lick Skillet.  I was unable to find the Seacock place, where Kogin lives.  I could find no person who knew where the place was,  Night coming on, we encamped at colonel Elliot's place.  The next morning we took up the line of march in the direction of Round Prairie.  The rains enabled us to track any force that might be in the vicinity.  We, however, failed to see any sign of a camp, and after going nearly to Round Prairie, we turned east to Chapel Hill, then to Hopewell.  Here we ascertained that the guerrillas were not concentrated, but were on Davis Creek, on the waters of the Sni, and in Greenton Valley.  One of our reconnoitering parties killed 2 of the guerrillas, and night coming on, we encamped in the vicinity of Hopewell.

The next morning I divided our force into three parties.  Sent one down the Sni, one down Davis Creek, and came, with the artillery, through Greenton Valley, reaching here on the evening of the 9th.  The expedition determined clearly to my mind that the guerrillas had not concentrated.  I am very much inclined to think that our appearance in Texas Prairie on the 7th, and the heavy rain storm of the night of the 6th, prevented their concentration.

At 10 o'clock of the 7th, as we came east, we found that the guerrillas had gone east.  On the night of the 7th, our men chased numerous small bands on the Sni and Davis Creek, but were unable to overtake them.  I directed some seven families of the most influential rebels, who have been feeding and harboring guerrillas, to report at Lexington, within ten days, with their families and effects, prepared to leave the country.  The women gave more aid and comfort than the men to the guerrillas.  I learned that the guerrillas had notified some Union families to leave, and i did not know of a better plan than to retaliate, to afford protection to the loyal men.  I hope this move will meet your approval, because it will be impossible to rid the country and protect the loyal people while these notorious and influential families remain to feed and comfort them.  

The two companies that came from the south, as it is said, to escort Quantrill out, commanded by Blunt and Graves, were on the Sni, west of Hopewell, on the night of the 7th, and from the best information i could get, I supposed they had gone east from there.  Diligent search failed to find them on the Sni on the 8th and 9th.  Graves was killed on the evening of the 7th, west of Hopewell, on the Sni by his own men.  James McFerran, Colonel First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, Commanding Post    (WR XXXIV: 546)



Skirmish at Dayton . 

Colonel:  In compliance with orders from Headquarters District of the Border, I arrived at this place yesterday, and am now stationed here with my command.  Company B, First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, and Company I, Sixth Kansas volunteer Cavalry, are also station here.  One company of the Eleventh Kansas Cavalry Volunteers and two companies of the Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry have just started from here to napoleon, and one company of the Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry to Trading Post, 40 miles southwest from here.

While on the march from Germantown, day before yesterday evening, company H, my advance, came in collision with a squad of bushwhackers at Dayton, 15 miles south of Harrisonville, and a brisk skirmish ensued, in which 2 bushwhackers were killed and 1 severely wounded.  Our boys came through unscathed, although they charged upon a barn where the rebels took shelter, and drove the rebels from it.  The horse of Sergeant [W.  L.] Meek, company H, received three wounds, and one other of our horses was slightly wounded.  We captured 3 horses, 4 pistols, w miniature rebel flags, &c.

Pleasant Hill was a few days since evacuated by the Federal troops, and has been partially burned by the bushwhackers.  I do not suppose that it was contemplated that we should remain at this place longer than the present (assumed) emergency.  However, it may be different, and the removal of other troops from this station looks as though we might possibly remain here some considerable time.  I am inclined to think the force of bushwhackers in this part of the country has been, and now is, by most officers, greatly overestimated.  But I may, myself, be mistaken.  They are scattered all over the country.  The forage guard had a skirmish to-day a few miles from town.  

Alex W. Mullins, Major First Missouri State Militia Cavalry (WR XXXIV 553)


13   Collapse of the Grand Avenue Prison in St. Louis    

Skirmish near Wellington 

General: I have the honor to report that Lieutenant [N.T.] Roger's company (L) of the First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, with 65 men from this post, left here on the morning of the 14th instant on a scout, and passed up Davis Creek to near Hopewell, and thence down the Sni to Wellington.  Lieutenant Rogers reports that they saw numerous small bands of bushwhackers on their march, who fled.  He is satisfied that one of the bushwhackers was wounded by his men near Hopewell; he made his escape, however.  Near Wellington he reports coming upon a band of 4, of whom he killed 1, wounded 2 others, and captured 3 horses.  After which he returned to this post, without sustaining any loss on his part.  James McFerran, Colonel First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, Commanding Post (WR XXXIV: 568).


15       Killing Spencer

Sir: I have the honor to state to you that I have managed to entrap one noted bushwhacker.  I ascertained where there were some that frequented a certain house.  On yesterday I ordered a scout of 20 men, under command of Captain Peery, to start at dark and proceed to the place referred to, which is about 8 miles from ere, with orders to conceal their horses in the brush and then surround the house, and keep concealed until after breakfast-time, at the same time to leave a guard with the horses, which the captain executed to the letter.  About sunrise this morning, they discovered a man sitting on the porch.  They raised up out of the weeds, and the man started to run.  On being ordered to halt, continued to run, and the shooting commenced.  The captain says almost every shot took effect.  After receiving eight or ten shots he fell dead; his name was Spencer; he is said to be one of the worst in the country.  I find the only way to get them is to waylay them.  

Milton Burris, Captain, Commanding Post (WR XXIV: 456)

18   General Ewing issues Order No. 10 which banishing people who help guerrillas from from the boarder areas of western Missouri    
21   William C. Quantrill and 450 followers raid Lawrence Kansas and kill 182 men and boys.    

Operations against Quantrill's Raid into Kansas 

General:  I have the honor to report that at 10 o'clock, august 20, I received information, at Warrensburg, that Quantrill, with 250 men, had passed 12 miles north of that place on the 19th, going west.  I immediately dispatched messengers to Lexington and Harrisonville, asking for all the force that could be sent from these stations to meet me at Chapel hill at daylight next morning.

I left Warrensburg at 10 o'clock with 100 men of companies C, I, and K. We formed a junction near Chapel Hill with Major Mullins, with 130 men of companies B, F, G, and H, all of the First Missouri State Militia Cavalry. Delayed here until late in the evening waiting on detachment from Lexington, when Colonel Neill, with 50 men of Fifth Provisional regiment Enrolled Missouri Militia, came up; pushed on that night as far as Lone Jack. Started early on the morning of the 22d on Quantrill's trail as far as Big Creek, 5 miles northwest of Pleasant Hill, where we stopped to feed, and as soon as the advance came out of the brush west of Big Creek they discovered a body of men some half mile in their front.  The whole command was immediately ordered up and parties sent out to discover who they were, when they replied that they were Federal troops, but would no say whose command they belonged to.  Fearing they were Federal troops, I road forward and satisfied myself they were bushwhackers, and were forming line of battle behind a fence; and as they were on top of a ridge, and were still coming up, I though it prudent to dismount a company to take the advance.  While engaged in this, they commenced retreating from their right.  After going some three-quarters of a mile, they changed their course to their left, and formed just over a ridge, where we came up with them and exchanged several rounds, when they broke for the brush.  Five were killed.  Have heard since several were wounded; several horses killed and some captured.  Some goods were picked up, but mostly left.  The ground they passed over was strewed with goods of every description.  As soon as I found they had scattered, the force was divided, and Capt. H. F. Peery, in command of one of the detachments, came up with them late in the evening, and fought them in the brush as considerable time, when they again scattered in every direction.  Five more were killed in this engagement.  Our casualties were none, so far.  I attempted to guard the passes that night to keep them from passing east, but the most of them passed over, several parties of them being fired upon, and 1 rebel killed.  From two prisoners we learned this party was commanded by Quantrill, and that there were 200 men.  

August 23, the brush of Big Creek was scoured, but none found.

[August] 24, marched from Pleasant Hill to Lone Jack, and from there to the head of Texas Prairie.  Saw some trails, but no rebels.  One of the prisoners took us to one of their caps, but found nothing but about a keg of powder and some corn, which was destroyed.

[August] 25, divided the command (except Colonel Neill's force, who left the 24th) into small parties, and scoured the country from the head of Texas Prairie north of Big Sni, and some 10 miles south of the prairie, sending Captain Jackson as far sough as Kingsvill, where I learned the party passed the day before.  I have not heard from him yet, although he was to report to me at Hopewell.  We had a number of skirmishes this day, killing 3 (no doubt wounding several) and capturing a number of horses, and some prisoners, who were unarmed, and a female, by the name of Miss Hutchins, of this place, who was standing picket while 2 bushwhackers were eating their dinner, and since their capture by giving them timely notice of the approach of troops.  Our casualties today were 1 killed and 1 wounded, viz: Killed, Robert C. Key, private Company K, and wounded, Joshua Stevens, Company I.

[August] 26, a picket skirmish this morning near Hopewell, and a long chase after a party of 30, but they scattered in the brush.  Learned 1 was wounded in the skirmish this morning.  From here scoured the country to Greenton, and, finding no fresh traces, I concluded best to come to this place and get our horses shod, some supplies and learn something of the movements of other troops, so that i could co-operate with them.

I cannot close this report without calling your attention to the fact that if we had been armed so that we could have made a charge, we could have captured Quantrill's entire command; but cavalry armed with long guns, and these empty, are not in a very good condition to make a charge on an enemy. 

Officers and men behaved well, and I take pleasure in mentioning the names of Captains Peery, W. Meredith, M.Burris, and lieutenants [B. F.] Johnson, J. D. Mullins, D. Groomer, P. S. Kenney.  The latter is our quartermaster, and is certainly one of the bravest and coolest men I have met with during an engagement, and is well worthy of promotion.  I must also call your attention to Corpl. Andrew J. Fuller, of Comapny I, who seized a bushwhacker, after they had emptied their revolvers, and beat his brains out with his pistol.  This is the same man who a short time since attacked 3 bushwhackers, killing 2 and running the third.  His bravery is certainly worthy of reward.

In closing this report, i would recommend that every citizen, man, woman, and child, in Texas Prairie, and near it, be sent out of the country, and troops sent there to use up the forage, or that it be destroyed.  There are large quantities of it there, and every farmer there, with one or two exceptions, favors and feeds the bushwhackers, and the quickest way to destroy them is to destroy their subsistence and remove their friends.  

The whole number killed during the scout was 16; brought in 8 male and 2 female prisoners; ordered a number of females to report to the provost-marshal; 25 horses, several guns and pistols.

B.F. Lazear, Lieutenant-Colonel, 1st Missouri State Militia Calvary. (WR XXXIV: 587-8)

General: In compliance with your order, you will find a brief statement of such facts as I have been able to obtain relative to the Quantrill raid.

On the night of the 20th of August, Lieut. col. B. F. Lazear informed Major Mullins that a large body of guerrillas were reported to be in the neighborhood of Chapel Hill, and ordered him to move without delay with the effective portion of his command in that direction.  Accordingly, major Mullins moved, with 126 men; formed a junction in the vicinity of Lone jack, or Chapel Hill, with lieutenant-Colonel Lazear; ascertained that the guerrillas had gone toward Kansas.  The whole force, about 300 strong, met Quantrill and his band of murderers and thieves 5 miles west of Pleasant Hill about 2 o'clock Saturday, when, after a short parley, which was thought necessary in order to ascertain who they were.  As soon as this was done our gallant lieutenant-colonel ordered the boys of the First Cavalry, and a portion of the Fifth Provisional Regiment, under Colonel Neill, to open fire on them, which was done with a will.  The bushwhackers fled in great confusion, hotly pursued by our soldiers.  I am credibly informed that there were 5 of the enemy killed in this engagement, and 10 wounded.  Several horses were killed, some captured, and plunder, from a horse to a finger ring, all of which was turned over, by order of lieutenant-Colonel Lazear, to the quartermaster First Missouri State Militia Cavalry.  

After this the lieutenant-colonel divided his forces and began to scour the brush in the neighborhood of Pleasant Hill.  A detachment of his force, G and K, under command of Capt. [H. F.] Peery, had an engagement with some stragglers and succeeded in killing 5.  Next day 2 prisoners were captured, from whom some valuable information was obtained.  This band of bushwhackers, whom it is supposed was commanded by Quantrill, passed through or near Lone Jack on the night of the 19th of August, came within 1 1/2 or 2 miles of Pleasant Hill, and then turned abruptly north for a distance of 5 miles, then west toward the headwaters of Grand River.  John Ballinger, Capt., Comdg. Detachment First Missouri State Militia Cavalry.  P. S.--Some papers were captured that had been entrusted to care of Captain Quantrill, &c. (WR XXXIV: 590-1)


September 19-20 Battle of Chickamauga      

Scouts in Lafayette County

General: I have the honor to report that, on the morning of the 22d instant, I left this place, with 140 men of companies B, H, L, and M, First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, for a scout in the eastern part of this county.  At the same time I ordered 100 men of companies C, I, and K, from Warrensburg to the headwaters of Blackwater and Davis Creek.  I have no official report from them yet, but learn they are doing good work.  I returned to this place on the 25th, having had a severe skirmish in the brush on the Tabo on the 22d, which resulted in the killing of 1, wounding 2 (since dead), capturing 8 horses, 5 revolvers, 1 carbine, 1 double-barrel shot-gun.  Our casualty was 1 killed, a Mr. Sullivan, who was acting as guide.  In another skirmish, on the 24th, we killed another; captured his horse and equipments and revolver.  We brought in 6 prisoners, 3 of whom have everything necessary to prove them bushwhackers, except we could not find their arms.  The result of the scout was 4 killed, 6 prisoners, 17 horses and 1 mule, 13 horse equipments, 6 revolvers, 2 guns, and 1 carbine.  The body of the guerrillas seem to be west of us.  Captain [M.] Morris, Company A, First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, reports that on the 22d he surprised Marchbanks on the Double Branches, in Bates County, capturing 18 horses and equipments, 18 guns, their camp equipage, and Marchbanks' private papers.  Thinks none were killed.  B. F. Lazear, Lieutenant-Colonel First Missouri State Militia Cavalry (WR XXXIV: 620-1)


September 22-October 26    The Baxter Springs Massacre committed by Quantrill Oct 6 near Fort Blair Headquarters at Warrensburg until July, 1865

Operations against Shelby 

Brigadier-General Totten:  Colonel Cole has 85 mounted men, one piece of artillery, and a squad of 25 infantry.  The following just received [from Tipton]:

The last information of the enemy he was turned west, 4 miles north of this place.  He is 1,60 strong, and two pieces of artillery.

Move up here, and I will keep you advised by message.  Our force is 1,100.  B. F. Lazear, Lieutenant-Colonel First Missouri State Militia Cavalry (WR XXIV: 635)

Maj. R. H. Brown, California [ MO]:  Send Lazear's dispatch up the road to Cole with all haste.  Send the rest of cavalry, with ammunition and subsistence to Cole for his command, and send him again my orders of this morning to pursue the enemy in concert with Lazear.  Be quick.  Jas. Totten Brigadier-General

General:  I have the honor to report that at 11p.m., 7th instant, companies B, C, D, E, F, G, H, and L, First Missouri State Militia Cavalry (Companies B, F, G, H, and L having just come in from Lexington and Wellington), left Warrensburg for Clinton, where we arrived at 11 am, 8th instant; marched that evening and night to Calhoun; 9th, marched from Calhoun to Cole Camp, where we struck the trail of Shelby, who was some four hours ahead of us.  Shelby's men murdered two citizens at this place and robbed the town of everything in it.

Early on the morning of the 10th, started on Shelby's trail, pressing forward as rapidly as possible, passing on through Florence to Tipton, on Pacific Railroad.  

The enemy plundered the country as they passed along of everything they could make use of.  learned that Shelby's force consisted of five regiments, of 300 men each, one battalion of 100 men, and two pieces of artillery, one brass 6-pounder and one iron Parrott 9-pounder gun, and that their force was picked from twenty-three regiments for the raid. 

As we came near Tipton, I learned we would have to cross a prairie some 4 miles, and having only 600 men of the first Missouri State militia Cavalry and 70 men of the Seventh Missouri State Militia, under Captain Darst and lieutenant Beckeer, who fell in with us at Calhoun, I deemed it best not to expose our whole force to view on the prairie.  We halted at the edge of the brush, selected a very favorable position, and formed line of battle, and sent forward two companies to reconnoiter.  When we arrived at Tipton, we found a few stragglers left in town; killed 2 while in the act of knocking down and robbing citizens, and took 1 prisoner.  after the main column moved up, we learned that the enemy were drawn up in line of battle some 3 miles up the railroad, where we had heard some cannon shots, but supposed it was some of our own troops, as we expected every hour that some party would certainly head them.  We determined to go up and give them battle, leaving two squadrons to protect our train, but found they had left, and returned just in time to find our pickets skirmishing with a body of men advancing from the east.  I felt certain they were Federal troops, and sent an order to major Mullins, who was in the advance with Companies E and H (and going at a dash, as he had seen the advancing party fire on two of our guidons that had been sent out), to halt.  At the same time a line of battle was formed, and another attempt made to ascertain who the party was, when they proved to be a party of the Enrolled Missouri Militia from California.  The officer in charge of their advance acted very badly in swearing he did not care a damn for our flags nor who we were, and fired on two men who went forward with the guidons to learn who the advancing party was.  Our loss in the skirmish was one horse wounded.  It being now dark and raining, the troops were bivouacked in line of battle for the night.  Lieutenant Dailey, company d, was ordered, with 50 men, to follow the trail of the enemy to his pickets, and annoy them all night, to prevent their getting any rest; but, unfortunately, being entirely incompetent, he only went out 4 miles and returned, and did not report until 6 o'clock next morning.  During the night we were joined by Major Kelly and 2oo men of the Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry, and major Gentry and 2oo men of the Fifth Provisional regiment enrolled Missouri Militia.  Just as the command was moving on the morning of the 11th, we received what was deemed reliable information that the enemy was at Otterville and fighting.  We left their trail, and pushed on up the railroad as far as Syracuse, where we learned the report was false, and the enemy were on the road to Boonville.  Here I ordered all our train, except two ammunition wagons, to remain, under charge of Captain Folmsbee, with his company (B).  We pushed on rapidly to Boonville, coming on to strong picket of the enemy just at dark, 4 miles out from Boonville.  Their pickets were driven from their positions, when we again bivouacked in line of battle, without fires and nothing to eat.  Night very dark and rainy.  Were joined this evening at camp by Captain Ware [Wear?] and 120 men of the Ninth Provisional Enrolled Missouri Militia.

Started on the morning of the 12th, at 5 o'clock.  Pushed on rapidly through Boonville (as we expected the enemy would be stopped by a force supposed to be in their front), when the advance, composed of Captain Darst's company and a detachment under lieutenant Becker, of the Seventh Missouri State Militia Cavalry, and Companies D and E, First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, under Major Mullins, came in sight of the rear guard of the enemy as they left their camp.  Skirmishing was soon commenced, and kept up almost continuously, lasting, in one place, half an hour, until we reached dug Ford, on La Mine.  Here the enemy left a force of some 200 or 300 men to defend the ford.  They were charged on by Captain Little and his brave Company E, who dashed across the river, receiving a most terrible fire from the enemy, only a few yards distant, which resembled a loud crash of thunder more than a report of fire-arms; but they were routed, and fled, 5 or  6 of their men being mortally and badly wounded one of whom was a lieutenant-colonel of Hunter's regiment (wounded in the arm), and 1 prisoner.  Company E's loss in this charge was 2 killed on the spot, 1 mortally, 2 severely, and 2 slightly wounded.  One of the latter, Lieutenant Hardesty, had three balls through his clothes, one of which was in the center of the body, but was turned off by a breastplate.  His and Captain Little's horses were wounded, and lieutenant Madden's killed.  Besides our loss here, we had previously lost 2 killed and 2 slightly wounded of the Seventh Missouri State Militia.  Up to this time the enemy's loss was 8 killed, 4 prisoners, and, no doubt, a large number wounded. 

Major Mullins deserves great praise for the manner in which he conducted the advance up to this time.  Shortly after crossing the la Mine, the command fell in your rear, when our work for the day ceased, except moving up to your command, where you had the skirmish near Jonesborough.  The detachment of the Seventh Missouri State Militia joined their regiment this evening, leaving under my command 500 of the First Missouri State Militia cavalry; 200 of the Fourth Missouri State militia cavalry, Major Kelly; 200 of the Fifth Provisional Regiment Enrolled Missouri militia, major Gentry, and 120 men of the Ninth provisional Regiment Enrolled Missouri Militia, under Captain Ware [Wear?], making an aggregate of 1,020 men.  At 11 p. m. we bivouacked in line of battle.  At 5 a.m. on the 13th, moved from Marshall, reaching that place at 7 o'clock, placing pickets on the different roads, and fed.  In a short time the pickets on the road east of town reported the enemy in sight, advancing on the town.  'To horse!" was sounded, and Major McGhee, in command of Second Battalion, and Captain Ware [Wear?], Enrolled Missouri Militia, were ordered to take position on a hill southeast of town, and hold the hill at all hazards.  Major Mullins, with the First Battalion, except Company F, was ordered to dismount and take the center; company L on the left of the battalion, in the town, and Major Gentry and his command on the left, and Major Kelly and his command and Company F held as reserve in rear of our two small pieces of artillery.

The enemy opened with his artillery on Major McGhee's column before he got his position, killing 1 horse in Company C the second round.  By the time Major McGee's battalion were dismounted and got in position, a large body of the enemy were advancing to take the hill he (McGhee) was ordered to hold.  They were repulsed by Major McGhee's riflemen in gallant style, and he continued to hold the hill until the enemy gave way.  The second point of attack by the enemy was on the center, Major Mullins, where the gallant boys of the First Battalion resisted and drove back three separate charges of the enemy, with heavy loss to them.  At the same time our two small pieces opened on the enemy, but could not reach them, as we had no ammunition but canister.  Took a new position with our artillery within 250 yards of the enemy's guns, when a most desperate charge was attempted on our pieces.  The support on the left of the pieces (Major Gentry's command) fell back in confusion without firing a gun.  Four gunners at one gun wounded, and all support gone, the pieces were ordered to fall back to the edge of town, where the whole force was rallied and placed in good position, and gallantly held their position against several charges until the enemy began to fall back, when our whole lines were advanced after the enemy. As soon as the left of the line was made secure, Major Kelly's battalion was ordered north and to our left, to watch and prevent any attempt the enemy might make to outflank us on our left.  We were in this position when you arrived upon the ground.  The battle had been going on some two or three hours.  Up to this time, and for the first hour and a half, it was very severe.  It was after your arrival, and after the enemy was in full retreat, with the loss of his Parrott gun, which was disabled and abandoned, that Major Kelly and his battalion of the Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry made his gallant charge, cutting the enemy's lines in two and scattering his forces.  Our casualties were very light, owing to our advantageous position and to the fact that our men fought most of the time lying down on the ground.  Killed, none; wounded, 2 dangerously, 3 seriously, and 2 slightly.  Two horses killed; my own wounded badly twice, and several slightly.  With the exception of one or two cases, officers and men acted bravely, and did their work coolly, calmly, and with a will.  Allow me here to thank Major Kelly, Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry, for the voluntary aid he rendered me, his command being held in reserve.  he spent the most of his time with me during the engagement, and too much praise cannot be bestowed upon him for the services rendered me.  

As soon as the battle ended, i was ordered by you with the First Missouri State Militia cavalry to Lexington, to take care of that place and the Sixth Sub-District.  Owing to some of the command taking the wrong road, it was late when we started for Lexington; lost the way several times in the night, and the men so worn out with hunger and the want of sleep that they were falling from their horses while marching, and I thought it best to halt half-way between Marshall and Lexington, near a road leading directly sough from Waverly.  In about three hours a scout i had sent out reported the enemy crossing the road 9 miles farther west, and going in the direction of Sedalia.  Started immediately, and when we struck the trail found it was some 500 to 700 of Shelby's men, and Shelby with them, retreating south by the way of Warrensburg.  They had no train, and were moving rapidly.  This was a hard day's march on us, as the rebels kept bearing in the direction of Warrensburg.  We road at a trot and gallop most of the afternoon, reaching Davis Creek at the crossing of the Lexington and Warrensburg road a little before sundown.  Shelby went up the creek, struck the Columbus road, but in a short distance left that road and bore in the direction of Warrensburg.  We left his trail at Davis and took the road direct to Warrensburg, where we arrived at 9 o'clock, having been for the last four days without rations, and little or nothing to get to eat on the road.

[October] 15, moved out near Rose Hill.  Learned that Shelby had passed Holden at 2 a. m., and General Ewing having started out south, I knew it was useless to follow any longer.  As our horses had been under the saddle for eight days and nights, and the men four days without rations, we were broken down, and returned to camp.  during the whole march, officers and men stood up to their work like soldiers, and never made a complaint.  

The following is a list of casualties at dug Ford, on la Mine River, October 12, 1863* Nominal list shows 2 men killed, 1 man mortally wounded, and 1 officer and 2 men wounded.

In addition to the above, 2 men of the Seventh Missouri State Militia were killed, and 2 slightly wounded same day, names not known.  One horse killed and 5 wounded.  Casualties, October 13, 1863, at the battle of Marshall, 2 officers and 5 men wounded; 2 horses killed and 1 wounded.

This comprises all our casualties.  We captured but little property, as we were in pursuit all the time; did not stop to pick up property; saw large numbers of horses and mules abandoned and left in the enemy's camp and on the road.

Leaving all the detachments under my command, except the First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, at Marshall, I have no report of their casualties at Marshall.

B. F. Lazear, Lieutenant-Colonel First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, Commanding Detachment in the Field (WR XXXIV: 629-633)

General: I have the honor to report that, on the morning of the 22d instant, I left this place, with 140 men of 'companies B, H, L, and M, first Missouri State Militia Cavalry, for a scout in the eastern part of this county.  At the same time I ordered 100 men of companies C, I, and K, from Warrensburg to the headwaters of Blackwater and Davis Creek.  I have no official report from them yet, but learn they are doing good work.  I returned to this place on the 25th, having had a severe skirmish in the brush on the Tabo on the 22d, which resulted in the killing of 1, wounding 2 (since dead), capturing 8 horses, 5 revolvers, 1 carbine, 1 double-barrel shot-gun.  Our casualty was 1 killed, a Mr. Sullivan, who was acting as guide.  In another skirmish, on the 24th, we killed another; captured his horse and equipments and revolver.  We brought in 6 prisoners, 3 of whom have everything necessary to prove them bushwhackers, except we could not find their arms.  

The result of the scout was 4 killed, 6 prisoners, 17 horses and 1 mule, 13 horse equipments, 6 revolvers, 2 guns, and 1 carbine.  The body of the guerrillas seem to be west of us.  Captain [M.] Morris, Company A, First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, reports that on the 22d he surprised Marchbanks on the Double Branches, in Bates county, capturing 18 horses and equipments, 18 guns, their cap equipage, and Marchbanks' private papers.  Thinks none were killed. 

B. F. Lazear, Lieutenant-Colonel First Missouri State Militia Cavalry  (WR XXXIV: 620-1)


Affair in Greenton Valley, near Hopewell 

Captain:  Captain [W. H.] Folmsbee, Company B, first Missouri State Militia cavalry, stationed at Hopewell, reported that, on October 21, Lieutenant [J.] Rhoades and a detachment of same company came upon a party of 4 bushwhackers in Greenton Valley, killing 2 and badly wounding another.

I also have the honor to report that the Sixth Sub-District is remarkably quiet at this time.  Only occasionally can hear of a bushwhacker.  I have my command distributed in the district, so that I think this state of affairs will continue, and I risk nothing in saying that there is a better state of affairs existing now in Johnson and La Fayette Counties than has since the beginning of the war.  B. F. Lazear, Lieutenant-Colonel, comdg.  First Missouri State Militia Cavalry (WR XXXIV: 707)

November 4       

Near Lexington  (Detachment) 

Major: I have the honor to report, for the information of the major-general commanding, that lieut. David Groomer, commanding a detachment of company G, first Missouri State Militia Cavalry, on the morning of the 4th instant, came up with a party of 8 bushwhackers (who had been passing themselves as Shelby's men) near the Sedalia road, 12 miles east of Lexington, killing 2 capturing 4 horses and equipments, 2 Guns, and a lot of clothing.  The balance scattered, and made their escape.  Casualties on our side, 1 horse wounded.  Very respectfully, your obedient servant, E. B. Brown Brigadier-General of Volunteers, Commanding (WR XXXIV:745).

23-25 Battle of Chattanooga      
December 8-21       Clinton

Captain: I have the honor to report that, in compliance with Special orders, No 237, dated Headquarters district of Central Missouri, December 4, 1863, I arrived at this place yesterday and have assumed command of all troops serving in the sub-district.  I have ordered all troops from Kansas found in the district, unless with undoubted authority, to be arrested and sent to these headquarters for investigation as to their authority for being here.  I will, as early as possible, report all the facts connected with the depredations committed by Kansas troops.  B. F. Lazear, Lieut. Col. first Missouri State Militia Cavalry, Commanding.  (WR XXXIV: 734)

General: I have the honor to state that I have suspended the pass words, as suggested; that, as far as my information extends, this sub district has been nearly quiet for the last ten days.  The exceptions are a small stampede of Negroes from the vicinity of Lexington, carrying away two horses, which have not been recovered at last accounts.  Soldiers of the Seventh Missouri State Militia Cavalry, at their homes, on furlough, in this country, about 15 miles west of this place, report that they killed a bushwhacker in a fight with four; the other three escaped.  From all that I can ascertain, I am inclined to believe that the man killed was Hardenbrook, a notorious thief and outlaw that escaped from prison at Lexington last spring.

The military commission ordered in last month, to sit at these headquarters, I find, upon inquiry, did not organize, in consequence of the sickness of Captain Peery and Lieutenant Mullins, and since their recovery they have been sitting on court-martial, which is still in session.  I have directed them to organize the commission and devote a part of the time to cases before it in the future, which, I think, they can do to advantage, as they can only hold court-martial during certain hours of the day, and besides, the judge advocate can take more time in making up the records.  No new of local interest.  James McFerran, Colonel First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, Comdg. Regt. (WR XXXIV: 746)


Back to the Top