Research The War in Carroll County, Arkansas - Bushwhackers

Peace Society

Corporal
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Location
Ark Mo line
from: Carroll County Historical Quarterly
published by the Carroll County Historical Society (Carroll County, Arkansas)
(posted with permission)

Vol. II, No. 3 June 1957
Pg.1 Stories of the Civil War and Early Carroll Co.
By Nora L. Davis Standlee

The people of southern Carroll Co suffered during the war as did every one and had their share of what was known as bush whackers. Frequently the women had to defend their homes and children against these outlaws. In many cases women whose husbands were away in the army would move in with a friend so as to better protect their children and in other ways help each other. Such was the case of my grandmother who had a friend, Mrs. Ailsie Holland, with her. One morning the women got news that bush whackers were in the vicinity so they prepared for them. Grandmother put a long knife in the sleeve of her linsey dress and Ailsie gathered a heap of stones and piled them on the hearth of the fire place.

No sooner than the children were all safely in the house, they heard the tramp of horses’ hoofs and the renegades arrived. They came blustering in and demanded food, money and anything of value in the house. One ruffian noticed the pile of stones on the hearth and asked what they were there for; aunt Ailsie replied “those are secesh biscuits; have one” she then proceeded to pounce the rocks on the fellow and his companions which threw the room into confusion. A large bag of dried apples was hidden under a bed and was picked up by one of the men but my grandmother drew the trusty knife from her sleeve and ripped the bag open at the same time wrenching it from the thief and flinging it around the room in such a way the fruit was scattered over the floor. The infuriated man then grabbed up her 2 year old son who was whimpering in fright and demanded “effen you don’t tell us whare any money you have is, I’ll burn the feet offen this young’un”. As he went toward the fire place with the child grandmother again resorted to her knife. She dashed at him with the knife poised at his chest and the coward dropped the child and the whole band hurriedly departed taking with them only bruises from the “secesh biscuits” and scratches of the angry women.
 

Peace Society

Corporal
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Location
Ark Mo line
from: Carroll County Historical Quarterly
published by the Carroll County Historical Society (Carroll County, Arkansas)
(posted with permission)

Vol 1 no. 5 Oct 1956
Pg. 7-12
This I Remember, As It Was Told to Me
By Coy Logan

Grandmother, Malinda Newberry Logan told about the many hardships of life during the Civil War Days. Her home was on the Kenner Creek fork of Osage near Hopewell in Newton County.

Bushwhackers came to their home and took their food. One family took the weather boards off the house and placed the cured meat inside the walls. The boards were nailed back over the meat. When the weather was warm, the grease soaked through the wall. This gave the Bushwhackers an idea. They found the meat and took it with them.

Bushwhackers took their feather beds out and ripped them open. They galloped their horses down the road scattering the feathers in the wind. With nothing better to use, they filled their beds with dry leaves. Later when one of the Bushwhackers was in the house, he shook the corners of the bed and called out to a fellow Bushwhacker, “Look here at this d….. hog bed.”

A brother had been away in the army for some time. He became a very sick man. He made his way home to stay a while to try to regain his health. The Bushwhackers came into the home. They said they were going to kill him. Grandmother was a very small child but she said she could remember that an older sister went to his bed and put her arms around him, told them they would have to kill her first. His life was spared. Grandmother believed the action of her sister saved her brother’s life.

Dave Perry was home on furlough from the army. He knew it was not safe to be found by the Bushwhackers. While he was home, the Bushwhackers suddenly approached the house from the front and back in search of Dave. It looked like Dave didn’t have half a chance to escape. One of the women did some quick thinking. She grabbed a dress and a bonnet and put them on Dave. Then she handed him the water bucket and told him to go to the spring. Dave walked out in plain view of the men as he went down the path to the spring. The Bushwhackers searched the house for Dave. In the meantime Dave had left the dress and bonnet at the spring. While they were searching the house for him, he had gone over the hill.
 

Peace Society

Corporal
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Location
Ark Mo line
from: Carroll County Historical Quarterly
published by the Carroll County Historical Society (Carroll County, Arkansas)
(posted with permission)

Vol 1 no. 5 Oct 1956
Pg. 7-12
This I Remember, As It Was Told to Me
By Coy Logan

Grandfather told about “Judge” Neal that lived across Kings River, west of Kingston. It was generally believed that he kept some money in his home. Bushwhackers came to rob the old man. He did some quick thinking and hid his money. The Bushwhackers came in and tried to make the old man tell where his money was. He wouldn’t tell them anything. They put his feet over the fire and burned them, still he wouldn’t tell where his money was.

The old man had thrown his bags of gold and silver into the kitchen garbage pail. Grandfather recalled that the old man had much difficulty in walking for some time after his feet were burned.

Grandfather said the buildings on the village square at Kingston were all burned except one during the war. One house on the south-east corner was left. This house was still used as a residence until about 1930.
 

Peace Society

Corporal
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Location
Ark Mo line
from: Carroll County Historical Quarterly
published by the Carroll County Historical Society (Carroll County, Arkansas)
(posted with permission)

Vol 1 no. 5 Oct 1956
Pg. 7-12
This I Remember, As It Was Told to Me
By Coy Logan

Salt became very scarce during the war. Grandmother said her family and some of their neighbors sent an ox-wagon to Fort Smith to get salt. When the wagon was almost home some Bushwhackers took all their salt away from them. Salt was so scarce that they dug up the dirt floors of their smokehouses where salt had settled into the ground. This was boiled in a big open kettle to get a little salt.



from: Carroll County Historical Quarterly
published by the Carroll County Historical Society (Carroll County, Arkansas)
(posted with permission)

Vol. II, No. 3 June 1957
Pg.1 Stories of the Civil War and Early Carroll Co.
By Nora L. Davis Standlee

Poverty engulfed the land and about the spring of 1863 grandmother and her friend Mrs. Holland, planted a small corn and vegetable crop using a single ox to do the cultivating. That spring the food shortage was so acute that for days the families subsisted on milk from the one cow left them and wild “greens” they boiled without salt or other seasoning. Salt was not to be had and some women obtained a small amount by digging the soil in the smoke house floor (for the benefit of generations to come, the smoke house was usually built of logs and had no wooden floor but bare soil and had a bench were pork was salted to preserve it and the brine from the meat would drip down into the soil and sometimes become brine encrusted). This soil they would boil and then let the water settle then use it as salt. This way they could in a measure satisfy their needs for salt.
 

Peace Society

Corporal
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Location
Ark Mo line
from: Carroll County Historical Quarterly
published by the Carroll County Historical Society (Carroll County, Arkansas)
(posted with permission)

Vol 1 no. 5 Oct 1956
pg. 9 A Civil War Experience
Charles Maple of Green Forest gives this account of a Civil War experience of his father Steven T Maple:

Steven was 11 years old at the outbreak of the war. He lived with his parents a short distance north of Carrollton on the old Maple homestead. Near the close of the war Steven, his sister and a cousin were sent with an ox cart to take a turn of corn to the watermill 2 miles below the present town of Alpena.

Soon after reaching the mill they were captured by the Jayhawkers who kept the oxen, cart and corn. While the Jayhawkers ransacked the mill young Steven eluded them by crawling through a hole in the mill floor. Once under the mill he made his way to the dam that impounded the water of the mill pond. He escaped to the other side of the creek by going between the dam and the water that poured over it. His sister and cousin were released but Steven had to remain in hiding until the war was over.
 

Peace Society

Corporal
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Location
Ark Mo line
from: Carroll County Historical Quarterly
published by the Carroll County Historical Society (Carroll County, Arkansas)
(posted with permission)

Vol 1 no. 5 Oct 1956
Pg. 7-12
This I Remember, As It Was Told to Me
By Coy Logan

Pg.9
[From S. P. Sugg of Dryfork:] Mr. Sugg’s mother, Nacy Boydston, lived near Kingston at the time of the war. Bushwhackers were hauling away and destroying the grain. The Boydston family took some of the corn back to the field and hid it in the grass by putting ears under the grass near the old cornstalks. By doing this the Boydston family had corn for bread for some time after the supply was gone for other families.


Grandmother told about a neighbor that had been dodging the Bushwhackers for some time. He thought they were determined to get him. One day several Bushwhackers suddenly came in sight of him. The Bushwhackers were on their horses. They gave chase. The man on foot ran across a small field. He saw they were gaining on him and were sure to get him. As he jumped over the old rail fence he began waving his arms in both directions, motioning as though he had a whole army of men behind the fence. He was motioning for them to come on and calling to them to make an attack. The Bushwhackers thought he meant it. They turned their horses and rode away as fast as they could.



On the mountain south of Dryfork there is a place called Shop Flat. Mr. C. W. Moore said a blacksmith had a shop there during the war. On one occasion some men were pursued by the Bushwhackers. The men had learned that the Bushwhackers almost caught them one time by following the tracks of their horses. Mr. Moore said these men had the blacksmith pull the shoes off the horses’ feet and nail them on backward in order to confuse and mislead the Bushwhackers that were on their trail.


p.12
A Mr. Sugg was killed on what we called the Boone Hill back of grandfather’s barn. It was said the Bushwhackers were chasing him when one shot him off his horse. This Mr. Sugg was the uncle of S. P. Sugg and John Sugg, two of our neighbors.
 

Peace Society

Corporal
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Location
Ark Mo line
from: Carroll County Historical Quarterly
published by the Carroll County Historical Society (Carroll County, Arkansas)
(posted with permission)

Vol 1 no. 5 Oct 1956
Pg. 7-12
This I Remember, As It Was Told to Me
By Coy Logan

Grandfather, Jim Logan, lived south of Kingston at the foot of the Burney Mountain during the Civil War. The family lived in a new brick house. (The house is still in use as a residence, 1957.) The clay was made into brick near the place where the house was built. The house had tall doors and a high ceiling. Grandfather said the Bushwhackers would ride their horses into the house and as they went around the table they would kick the dishes off on the floor and break them.

Grandfather said his father was too old to serve in the army. His life was in danger because he was able to work at home. Much of the time during the war he stayed in a bluff shelter or a small cave on the east side of the Burney Mountain. In this mountain retreat and hide-out, he made shoes. Henry Burney took your writer to the place of the hide-out in 1929. After 65 years of time there was still evidence of the shelter. Henry pointed out some of the split oak boards. He said these were a part of the shelter that my great-grandfather had made under the over-hanging bluff.

On the south side of the mountain there was another shelter. Henry said my great-grandfather stayed there some. Near the close of the war great-grandfather took his horses up in the mountains to this isolated place and kept them there to avoid having them stolen.

Grandfather had an older brother serving in the army. On one occasion he was home for a few days. It wasn’t safe for him to stay around the house. He stayed with grandfather at the mountain hide-out. After dark one evening he and grandfather came down the mountain to the house. When they arrived some of the Bushwhackers were there plundering, destroying, and taking the things they wanted. The son wanted to fire on the Bushwhackers, but great-grandfather said this would not be the thing to do. He and great grandfather could possible have killed two or three and driven the others away. This would arouse more anger and cause other Bushwhackers to come and burn their house and probably kill the entire family.
 

NH Civil War Gal

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Thank you for posting these historical reminders of those terrible times.
 

Peace Society

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Jun 25, 2019
Location
Ark Mo line
from: Carroll County Historical Quarterly

published by the Carroll County Historical Society (Carroll County, Arkansas)

(posted with permission)



Vol. II, No. 4 Sept 1957

Pg. 7-8 A Pioneer’s Memories

By Mrs. Charlie Bunch



My maternal grandfather William Plumlee… settled the farm that Clay Fancher now owns, and lived there until his passing. As part of his wedding attire, he wore a pair of blue buckskin trousers which he had tanned and dyed with wild Indigo. They were hand sewn and for many years he wore them for dress. A constant worry to him were the trouser knees, which would bag most unbecomingly. But an overnight press job on the trousers, which was accomplished by placing them carefully between the feather bed and the under bed, would bring them out good as new. He was proud of his trousers and received many compliments on their appearance; many mistook them for English broadcloth. A large portion of his tanning vat still remained when I came to Arkansas in 1910.



During the Civil War he had a hideout in a plum thicket down the hill east of the house, where he made shoes for his family and many neighbors. Painstakingly he split hickory pegs with which the shoes were put together.



Grandfather did not take sides in the Civil War until it became very unsafe for him to remain at home. One night while asleep, he was suddenly awakened as he heard the click of the door. Without hesitancy he rolled off behind the bed. The uninvited Confederate soldiers walked in, started searching the premises and inquired as to the whereabouts of the man of the house. One soldier perchance kicked a large bag of dried peaches lying near the front edge under the bed. After discovering it contained something edible, he shouldered it and took leave. Grandfather breathed a sigh of relief, as they didn’t search farther under the bed. He quickly dressed, and taking some warm comforts with him, slept in his hideout the rest of the night and the following nights.



Only a short time after this episode, when he was at the house eating supper and doing the evening chores, some men walked in demanding to know why he hadn’t taken sides in the Civil War. He replied that he was awaiting a regiment of Confederate soldiers coming through so he could join them. They said they were camped at the Bunch Spring, and they left after grandfather promised to meet them there in one hour. Upon their departure his oldest daughter saddled his horse while he packed food. He mounted the horse; he rode fast through the gate opened by his daughter, hurrying through the night to join the Northern forces. Then came the long months of agony, with the family not knowing if he had been captured or if he had made it to the group he had chosen to join.



Upon his return home months later he moved his family to some islands on the White River in Missouri. As the Civil War ended he moved back to his house in February, only to find the house and all the rail fencing burned. There was a new log wall of a building he had raised before the war and it still stood, so he rived boards to cover it and daubed the cracks with clay. They soon had another home. He and his oldest son, Joel, the father of the late Tilda (Mrs. Charlie Davis), split 1,800 rails and fenced the beautiful surrounding green field he had left sowed in wheat. But much to his disappointment, he found the entire crop was cheat when harvest time came.
 

leftyhunter

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Joined
May 27, 2011
Location
los angeles ca
from: Carroll County Historical Quarterly
published by the Carroll County Historical Society (Carroll County, Arkansas)
(posted with permission)

Vol 1 no. 5 Oct 1956
Pg. 7-12
This I Remember, As It Was Told to Me
By Coy Logan

Pg.9
[From S. P. Sugg of Dryfork:] Mr. Sugg’s mother, Nacy Boydston, lived near Kingston at the time of the war. Bushwhackers were hauling away and destroying the grain. The Boydston family took some of the corn back to the field and hid it in the grass by putting ears under the grass near the old cornstalks. By doing this the Boydston family had corn for bread for some time after the supply was gone for other families.


Grandmother told about a neighbor that had been dodging the Bushwhackers for some time. He thought they were determined to get him. One day several Bushwhackers suddenly came in sight of him. The Bushwhackers were on their horses. They gave chase. The man on foot ran across a small field. He saw they were gaining on him and were sure to get him. As he jumped over the old rail fence he began waving his arms in both directions, motioning as though he had a whole army of men behind the fence. He was motioning for them to come on and calling to them to make an attack. The Bushwhackers thought he meant it. They turned their horses and rode away as fast as they could.



On the mountain south of Dryfork there is a place called Shop Flat. Mr. C. W. Moore said a blacksmith had a shop there during the war. On one occasion some men were pursued by the Bushwhackers. The men had learned that the Bushwhackers almost caught them one time by following the tracks of their horses. Mr. Moore said these men had the blacksmith pull the shoes off the horses’ feet and nail them on backward in order to confuse and mislead the Bushwhackers that were on their trail.


p.12
A Mr. Sugg was killed on what we called the Boone Hill back of grandfather’s barn. It was said the Bushwhackers were chasing him when one shot him off his horse. This Mr. Sugg was the uncle of S. P. Sugg and John Sugg, two of our neighbors.
The term Bushwhacker was a perjoritive word used by both sides meaning" the other sides guerrillas'.
Arkansas had both Unionist and Confederate guerrillas plus of course free lance bandits .
Col. Monk of the Missouri State Militia tried to make a joint forces agreement with his Confederate
counter part to fight free lance guerrillas in Northern Arkansas and Southern Missouri but nothing came of it.
Leftyhunter
 

ratwod

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Apr 19, 2011
One irony is that the people of the Arkansas-Missouri border area had no stake in the war. Due to the terrain, slavery was not viable. For all intents and purposes, the people of the border area were agnostic--they didn't care what happened in Richmond or Washington. (The book, "The Uncivil War: Irregular Warfare in the Upper South, 1861–1865" by Robert Mackey, delves somewhat into the mess in northern Arkansas and southern Missouri.)

In 1862, the governor of Arkansas encouraged men in northern Arkansas to form small raiding parties of fiver or so men to raid Missouri. Mackey points out that partisans have to eat, and, if they can't steal food from "the enemy", they will steal it from someone else.

The result was a number of lawless bands stealing and thieving in Missouri *AND* Arkansas. Arkansas attempted to stop the raiding, but to no avail.

From 1863 to 1870, northern Arkansas and southern Missouri had roving bands of thieves, Union and Confederate regulars, and Union and Confederate partisans. Oregon County, Missouri was ran by a war lord for several years.
 

leftyhunter

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May 27, 2011
Location
los angeles ca
One irony is that the people of the Arkansas-Missouri border area had no stake in the war. Due to the terrain, slavery was not viable. For all intents and purposes, the people of the border area were agnostic--they didn't care what happened in Richmond or Washington. (The book, "The Uncivil War: Irregular Warfare in the Upper South, 1861–1865" by Robert Mackey, delves somewhat into the mess in northern Arkansas and southern Missouri.)

In 1862, the governor of Arkansas encouraged men in northern Arkansas to form small raiding parties of fiver or so men to raid Missouri. Mackey points out that partisans have to eat, and, if they can't steal food from "the enemy", they will steal it from someone else.

The result was a number of lawless bands stealing and thieving in Missouri *AND* Arkansas. Arkansas attempted to stop the raiding, but to no avail.

From 1863 to 1870, northern Arkansas and southern Missouri had roving bands of thieves, Union and Confederate regulars, and Union and Confederate partisans. Oregon County, Missouri was ran by a war lord for several years.
On the other hand it's difficult at best to be neutral in a civil war. The Confederate Army would attempt to conscript what ever man it could lay it's hands on if he was half way fit for duty.
In Missouri all able-bodied men were required to be in the Militia to fight Confederate guerrillas although their enthusiasm and effectiveness varied. The Paw Paw Militia composed of former Missouri State Guards being a good example.
True Northern Arkansas and Southern Missouri bordered on anarchy.
Leftyhunter
 
Last edited:

TnFed

First Sergeant
Joined
Jun 18, 2018
One irony is that the people of the Arkansas-Missouri border area had no stake in the war. Due to the terrain, slavery was not viable. For all intents and purposes, the people of the border area were agnostic--they didn't care what happened in Richmond or Washington. (The book, "The Uncivil War: Irregular Warfare in the Upper South, 1861–1865" by Robert Mackey, delves somewhat into the mess in northern Arkansas and southern Missouri.)

In 1862, the governor of Arkansas encouraged men in northern Arkansas to form small raiding parties of fiver or so men to raid Missouri. Mackey points out that partisans have to eat, and, if they can't steal food from "the enemy", they will steal it from someone else.

The result was a number of lawless bands stealing and thieving in Missouri *AND* Arkansas. Arkansas attempted to stop the raiding, but to no avail.

From 1863 to 1870, northern Arkansas and southern Missouri had roving bands of thieves, Union and Confederate regulars, and Union and Confederate partisans. Oregon County, Missouri was ran by a war lord for several years.
Would like to hear more about Oregon County.
 

Lubliner

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Nov 27, 2018
Location
Chattanooga, Tennessee
Brig. Gen. John Schofield was placed in immediate command of Missouri on April 10, 1862. His first report generated from that department is found in Series 1, Volume XIII, from its beginning. I will excerpt a few highlights:
[pg. 9-10 speaking of approx. date July 5, 1862 on border protection];

"I had hardly made the necessary disposition of my troops to preserve the peace of the State, upon the supposition that it was to be protected from invasion by the Army under General Curtis when the movement of his force to Helena left the entire southern border unprotected and the State exposed to raids of the enemy's cavalry which it was impossible for me to meet without withdrawing protection from the houses of loyal people throughout the State, which latter would have been to give the entire State over to pillage and destruction."

Historically speaking, Brig. Gen. Schofield has advanced a very strong and valid argument concerning the war in Missouri. He also admits to the confederate schemes being used for enrollment, infiltration and takeover of the State by the rebels at this time. From page 10 to 11 speaking of enrollments N&S;

" The first effect, and which was to be expected, was to cause every rebel in the State who could possess himself of a weapon of any kind to spring to arms and join the nearest guerilla band, thus largely and suddenly increasing the force with which we had to contend, while thousands of others ran to the brush to avoid the required enrollment. On the other hand, the loyal men throughout those portions of the State which had suffered from rebel outrages rallied at the first call...."

"Thousands fled from the State to avoid the enrollment....Many young men, who would otherwise have been glad to remain quietly at home, were induced by...misrepresentations to enter the rebel ranks."


Lubliner.
 

Peace Society

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Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Location
Ark Mo line
from: Carroll County Historical Quarterly

published by the Carroll County Historical Society (Carroll County, Arkansas)

(posted with permission)



Vol. III, No. 3 Sept 1958

Pg. 13





During the War at one time 20,000 Federal troops under General Herron were encamped at old Carrollton for a week or longer, and at another time 3000 Kansas troops under General Blount were encamped there for eight days. Goodspeed says, “It cannot be said that this visitation was remembered with gratitude by the people of the vicinity.” A skirmish did occur at old Carrollton on August 14, 1864, in which several were killed. The details are lacking as there was no attempt made to officially record or enumerate all the various encounters that occurred during the long five year period of war. Goodspeed’s history says in this respect, “Armed bands of robbers infested the country, the terror of those they pretended to befriend no less than those they openly attacked.” Guerrilla warfare seemed to be common throughout the war period. The many accounts of which have been mostly lost through failure of people to take written accounts from the old timers who knew of all the engagements before they died.
 
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