Best books on Civil War Missouri?

Harms88

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 13, 2019
Location
North of the Wall & South of the Canucks
So I’m working on a story set in 1861 Missouri, about twin brothers who fought on opposite sides of the war and their families. What’s some good books about Missouri during the Civil War?

I’m specifically looking for books that deal with both the home front and military side.
 

limberbox

Private
Joined
Apr 25, 2020
So I’m working on a story set in 1861 Missouri, about twin brothers who fought on opposite sides of the war and their families. What’s some good books about Missouri during the Civil War?

I’m specifically looking for books that deal with both the home front and military side.

Here are a few to start with:

Jay Monaghan, Civil War on the Western Border, excellent overview
Wiley Britton, Civil War on the The Border (two volumes), same; earlier written and more detail
Goodrich, Black Flag, Guerilla Warfare on the Western border 1861-1865, necessary to understand war in Missouri
Piston & Hatcher, Wilson's Creek
William Shea, Pea Ridge (battle fought just over the border in Arkansas but key to the Civil War in Missouri)
You'll also want to read about Price's 1864 invasion, e.g., battles of Pilot Knob, Little Blue, Byram's Ford, Westport, Mine Creek
Suderow & House, The Battle of Pilot Knob, Thunder in Arcadia Valley
Hunter, Cavalrymen of the Third Iowa, has good treatment of Byram's Ford and Mine Creek

Two good books on Missouri's premier Confederate brigades are:
Gottschalk, In Deadly Earnest
Tucker, The South's finest
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
Do you have a location, for example St Louis and St Joseph have books devoted to their cities during the war, guerrilla warfare would vary in intensity and by what groups depending on area? As would battles and campaigns.

If really want accuracy to locale, about every county has fairly detailed county histories written from 1870-80

For example here is 1884 history of my county compared to Civil War on the Western Border....
16145632019366572586901947265905.jpg
 

Harms88

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 13, 2019
Location
North of the Wall & South of the Canucks
Here are a few to start with:

Jay Monaghan, Civil War on the Western Border, excellent overview
Wiley Britton, Civil War on the The Border (two volumes), same; earlier written and more detail
Goodrich, Black Flag, Guerilla Warfare on the Western border 1861-1865, necessary to understand war in Missouri
Piston & Hatcher, Wilson's Creek
William Shea, Pea Ridge (battle fought just over the border in Arkansas but key to the Civil War in Missouri)
You'll also want to read about Price's 1864 invasion, e.g., battles of Pilot Knob, Little Blue, Byram's Ford, Westport, Mine Creek
Suderow & House, The Battle of Pilot Knob, Thunder in Arcadia Valley
Hunter, Cavalrymen of the Third Iowa, has good treatment of Byram's Ford and Mine Creek

Two good books on Missouri's premier Confederate brigades are:
Gottschalk, In Deadly Earnest
Tucker, The South's finest

The ones out of the list that I feel is the best geared towards what I'm looking for are the first four of the recommendations. The timeframe the book is between March and August, ending after Wilson's Creek.
 

Harms88

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 13, 2019
Location
North of the Wall & South of the Canucks
Do you have a location, for example St Louis and St Joseph have books devoted to their cities during the war, guerrilla warfare would vary in intensity and by what groups depending on area? As would battles and campaigns.

If really want accuracy to locale, about every county has fairly detailed county histories written from 1870-80

So the family (pro-slaver but one brother is a Unionist and the other is Confederate) is located on the Black River near where Leeper would eventually be settled (Unionist) and Current River near Van Buren (Confederate).

The Confederate Brother will start off as a guerilla but transfer to the Missouri State Guard due to a distaste of guerilla tactics and the Union one will be in the 5th Missouri as a direct result to actions of his brother's guerilla band. As for battles, I was thinking of the battles of Carthage, Athens, Dug Springs and Wilson's Creek (which works to give both brothers different battlefield experiences, as the 5th was not at Athens or Dug Springs but at Carthage and Wilson's Creek.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
They are two different counties....sort of three as carter county came from ripley county....and leeper is in Wayne.

But a period county history would be the way to go in "historical fiction" I would think
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
Battle of Athens doesn't really fit the rest either. It was forces from northern Missouri and 365 miles from Carthage, and fought within 5 days of WC 320 miles away.....

For the "Southern" side the MSG was organized by geographic areas. Van Buren would be VII division, which would been at WC, Leeper would been I division.

The forces at Athens were all 2nd Division MSG, which was north of the Missouri River. And Moores Home Guard from northeast Mo counties
 
Last edited:

Harms88

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 13, 2019
Location
North of the Wall & South of the Canucks
Battle of Athens doesn't really fit the rest either. It was forces from northern Missouri and 365 miles from Carthage, and fought within 5 days of WC 320 miles away.....

For the "Southern" side the MSG was organized by geographic areas. Van Buren would be VII division, which would been at WC, Leeper would been I division.

The forces at Athens were all 2nd Division MSG, which was north of the Missouri River. And Moores Home Guard from northeast Mo counties

Doing a very quick search for their commander, McBride's VII Division's only fought two actions in 1861: Wilson's Creek and Siege of Lexington in Sep. Beyond that, they weren't too active that year, but I could work with that. The battles, while being key actions pieces, serve the characters and their growth than the characters serving the battles.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
A county history would likely mention which companies for what Regt was raised in the county.

VII division was organized 6 infantry Regt and 2 cavalry Regt.
 

leftyhunter

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Joined
May 27, 2011
Location
los angeles ca
So I’m working on a story set in 1861 Missouri, about twin brothers who fought on opposite sides of the war and their families. What’s some good books about Missouri during the Civil War?

I’m specifically looking for books that deal with both the home front and military side.
" Jesse James Last Rebel of the Civil War " T.J. Stiles Vintage Civil War Library.
I have Samual Hildebrand' s autobiography at home Hildebrand was a notorious Confedrate guerrlla but his younger brother was in the Union Army. Hildebrand doesn't go into detail why his brother joined the Union Army.
Leftyhunter
 

Patrick H

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Mar 7, 2014
Sounds like @archieclement is giving you some very good insight. There are lots of books that could shed light on the guerrilla war but so many of them are focused on the western and central counties. The brother in your story would have been more familiar with Sam Hilderbrand than with Anderson, Todd, or Quantrill. If his decision to leave a guerrilla band is based on what he read of guerrilla action in western counties you could add "Quantrill and the Border Wars" to your list. It was definitely written from the Kansas viewpoint, which was essentially shared by many of the big newspapers of the era. If you want to give any detail about what first drew the brother into guerrilla activity, you might consider "Three Years With Quantrill" by John McCorkle. Ironically, he started in the State Guard, then took the oath of allegiance, and then decided he was forced by circumstances to join Quantrill. He dictated the book in old age, and is foggy on some details, but he gives a good account of the circumstances that led to his decision.
 
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