The Civil War in Missouri
Transcribed official Messages and reports between Officers in the field and their Headquarters, and messages from Field Office to Field Office.
Skirmish between Stockton, Cedar County, and Humansville
Skirmish near Montevallo
A Scout on Horse Creek and Cedar Creek 11 Sept. 1862
June 17, 1864. Militia Call Up
A Scout on Cedar and Horse Creeks
AUGUST 12, 1862. Skirmish between Stockton, Cedar County, and Humansville, Mo.
Report of Maj. Samuel Montgomery, Sixth Missouri Cavalry.
STOCKTON, Mo., August 12, 1862.
We followed Coffee to this place last night. He moved from Humansville toward Bolivar, but changed his
course for this place in the night. The Sixth Missouri Cavalry proceeded in the direction of Bolivar.
The artillery and Fourth Missouri Militia took the road for this place, came up with the enemy just at
daylight, attacked and drove them handsomely, officers and men conducting themselves with the utmost coolness and courage. Major Dale, I regret to say, received a painful wound in the wrist while
gallantly leading his men in the very face of the enemy. This was the only casualty on our side. The
enemy lost 5 killed and a number wounded. The enemy is now flying in the direction of Montevallo, our
cavalry in full pursuit.
Major Sixth Missouri Cavalry.
AUGUST 7, 1862. Skirmish near Montevallo, Mo.
Report of Col. Clark Wright, Sixth Missouri Cavalry.
HEADQUARTERS CAMP SCHOFIELD,
Near Springfield, Mo., August 9, 1862.
GENERAL: After addressing my letter of the 5th instant to you I made application to the general to
allow me to send out a part of the Sixth Missouri Cavalry, under Major Montgomery, to cut Coffee off,
and it was granted ; also some 150 Missouri State Militia was added to the command, and the major
instructed to file in all citizens who had guns, and engage the rebels if possible.
On the evening of the 8th a dispatch from him informed methat he succeeded in turning the enemy s rear, and on the 7th engaged one of his camps, killing 18, wounding 4, that were found, and capturing 17
prisoners, and 7 unaccounted for, except by General Orders, No. 18. He says that Coffee's force is
divided; that the one engaged was near Montevallo, the other near or at Osceola, and that the combined
forces numbered about 900 men. When the messenger left him the major was at Stockton, pressing on to engage the force at Osceola. Our loss, none; few slightly wounded. I have sent a full squadron to join
him, and feel in hopes we have the old rebel in a tight place. Scouts report the forces south and
east about the same, except the citizens, who have joined them to escape the militia law.
An old neighbor of mine (a very reliable man) arrived in my camp last night direct from Texas, and
confirms previous reports. He says the Texans in large numbers are coming to Missouri, armed with all
kinds of citizens arms, and a great majority of them without discipline. September 10 is the time set
by the rebels to make the invasion and take formal possession of this post and its surroundings. The
rebels through the country are highly elated with the idea, and think they will soon be surrounded by
their friends; but if we commit no blunders we will amuse them some while they are accomplishing their object. I am satisfied they will make a desperate effort to compel you either to concentrate your
forces on the southern border, by vacating Saint Louis or Central Missouri, or to withdraw your forces
from this division. The necessity in either case, it appears to me, would be unfortunate. This seems to
be a part of their general plan; hence the necessity of actively, energetically, and thoroughly
organizing the militia in the Southwest, as well as to fill up the volunteer regiments with dispatch, and carefully avoid giving them any advantage. I feel a degree of confidence in our ability to do so, and trust to the God of Battles and our sabers for victory.
I am, general, with very high respect, your obedient servant, CLARK WRIGHT,
Colonel Sixth Missouri Cavalry.
Brigadier-General SCHOFIELD, Comdg. Forces, Missouri.
P. S. Since writing the above I have received a dispatch from Major Montgomery. He came near a rebel
camp, 4 miles north of Stockton, in a strong position, with about 1,500 troops, and not having
confidence in the citizens and militia with him in a well-contested fight, he prudently fell back to
Greenfield, and asks re-enforcements. The general has re-enforced him with men and artillery, and we
may expect to hear of a fight soon.
A Scout on Horse Creek and Cedar Creek
SPRINGFIELD, Mo;, September 11, 1862.
GENERAL : I have the honor to report that in obedience to your Special Orders, No. 623, I marched at 8
o clock p. in., 5th instant, with Companies B and G, Eighth Cavalry, Missouri State Militia, numbering
85 men in the aggregate. On the 6th I was joined by Captain Phillips (35), Captain Bedfern (36), Captain Morgan (35), Captain Small (65), Captain Simmons (30), all Enrolled Militia, numbering 201 men, giving me a total aggregate of 286 men ; afterward increased by Captain Smith's command, numbering 44 men; making 330.
At 11 o clock p. m., 6th instant, I marched for the head of Horse Creek with the entire command above
reported. Along the whole route I kept out advance and flanking parties. Arrived at Waggoner s (head
of Horse Creek, Barton County) at 12 in. 7th instant; found numerous signs of rebel guerrilla parties.
For about five hours we were constantly chasing gangs of bushwhackers, varying in numbers from 4 to
25. Camped on Horse Creek. 8th. Left camp at 4 o clock a. m. Divided the force and scouted both the
Cedar Creek and Horse Creek country thoroughly, arriving at Stockton at 6 o clock p. m. ; staid until 2
o'clock a. m. 9th. Started south, scouring both creeks, arriving at Greenfield 5 o'clock p. m. 10th.
Left Greenfield 4 o clock a. m. At Pemberton Mills dismissed all of Enrolled Militia to return to their
respective precincts, and came to Springfield, arriving in camp at 1.30 o clock a. m. (llth), making in
all a march estimated at 250 miles at least. During the expedition I know that 11 bushwhackers were
killed and several wounded. There is a considerable force of guerrillas (say 200 or 250) on the two
creeks (Horse and Cedar), who are scattered over a large area of country in small squads. The extreme
density of the growth of brush in the timber makes it impenetrable to a stranger. I would respectfully
suggest the only way in which they can be removed, viz, to send a force there for the purpose of
staying until they are exterminated, taking provisions upon which to subsist, as the country affords
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JNO. E. COLLINS,
June 17, 1864. Militia Call Up
SPRINGFIELD, Mo., June 17, 1864.
Major-General ROSECRANS :
I respectfully request that you request His Excellency Governor Hall forthwith to call into active service the entire militia force of Dade. Cedar, Vernon, Boston, Jasper, and Newton Counties for the period of sixty days unless sooner relieved, with directions for the troops of each county to rendezvous at the county seat of their respective counties, and report to Brigadier-General Holland for orders. This request is made for the following reasons, viz: First. These counties are being devastated by marauding bands of guerrillas, and the present military force is inadequate to prevent these bands from murdering many Union men and destroying much property. Second. Large numbers of troops from the rebel army are constantly moving north through this section of the State, and cannot be checked and driven back by the present military force.
JOHN B. SANBORN.
A Scout on Cedar and Horse Creeks
To: Brigadier John McNeil,
Commanding District of Southwest Missouri.
General: On the 11th instant I sent Captain E. J. Morris out to the head of Cedar Creek, to assist a Union man to move out, when a band of rebels run onto him & caught private Samuel Downing and murdered him. He had 32 bullets shot into him and was beaten up with his musket!
I started out on the 15th instant with a detachment of 70 men and returned yesterday evening; traveled 90 miles; killed 1 rebel; ordered all rebels south of the Federal lines; I burned everything from a pigpen to a mansion on Cedar and Horse Creeks.
The band that killed Downing has gone south. They started last Monday morning. There were about 100 Rebs, Negroes, women and children. They went out between Horse Creek & Lamar.
I understand there are some bushwhackers collecting on the Big Jack. I have sent a scout to ascertain their whereabouts and their strength. I think as soon as I get shut of the rebel women in these parts we will have peace!
There were 2 men some 7 miles east of town, calling themselves soldiers, stealing horses. They stole a horse from Mr. Gilmore, as loyal a man as there is in Missouri.
One of the men was William Rowan, the other Ragsdale. They claim to belong to the Second Kansas. They also took a horse from Samuel Harris.
Please send the horses down by Captain Morris and oblige, yours respectfully,