Battle at Jackson: How one town’s City Council turned its back on its Heritage and bowed to Left-Wing radicals

The following articles are from the Southeast Missourian archives from January-March, 2005 and detail my efforts to erect a Missouri Battle Flag at the monument of Colonel William Jeffers in Jackson, Missouri, a proposal that originally had the backing of  (then) Jackson Mayor Paul Sander, the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

One hit piece from the ultra-liberal Southern Poverty Law Center based out of Montgomery, Alabama changed all that, the people that were supposed to be leaders in the community of Jackson caved, the organizations that were supposed to honor veterans caved equally as quick.

At the time I was vice-chairman of the Missouri League of the South, by the time the fight was over I and my chapter voted to leave, not for reasons of “racism”, “anti-Semitism” or any other “ism” that some later claimed, rather it was lack of support from the national hierarchy of the organization.

Today I concentrate my efforts on my writing and research.

The Proposal…

Jackson Considers Battle Flag at Cemetery

Wednesday, January 12, 2005
Bob Miller ~ Southeast Missourian ~ Southeast Missourian

A Civil War heritage group has asked the Jackson Board of Aldermen to allow a Missouri Confederate battle flag to be flown at the city cemetery to honor one of the area’s most heralded Confederate Civil War leaders.

The board discussed the request by the Southeast Missouri chapter of the Missouri League of the South at Monday night’s study session, but the board members hesitated, saying they need more information about the flag before they make a decision. They said they were also concerned about setting a precedent.

Mary Boner, a city attorney, told the board that it could allow the flag, but it should first come up with a policy for which it would allow flags in the future.

Mayor Paul Sander was out of town and did not attend the meeting, but he left a note for the rest of the board that the request received the blessing of the local VFW and American Legion.

The Missouri battle flag is a blue banner, trimmed in red, with a white cross in the upper left corner. It would be flown at the grave of Col. William Jeffers, who died Feb. 21, 1903. He led Confederate troops into several battles, including some local ones.

The Missouri battle flag is also called the Gen. Sterling Price Flag, said Clint Lacy, the vice chairman of the Missouri League of the South. Price, a former Missouri governor, led the 1864 invasion of Missouri and Jeffers served under Price in that battle, Lacy said, making the battle flag an appropriate banner to fly over the grave.

Such flags were used to lead troops into battle rather than the Stars and Bars, the official Confederate flag.

“We feel like the U.S. flag honors his service in the Mexican War,” Lacy said. “We feel like a soldier should have the honor and privilege of being buried under the flag in which they fought.”

Many Confederate soldiers, Lacy said, weren’t fighting for slavery.

“In Missouri, a lot were fighting because they thought their state was being invaded,” he said. “They were fighting for their homes and their family.”

Lacy said the league is willing to pay for and maintain the flag and flagpole. He said communities all over the country allow such requests.

Lacy said Jeffers became a “well-respected and established citizen” after the war. He lived for a time in Dunklin County, and set up militia that fought against “night riders,” which were Ku Klux Klan-type groups. He then lived in Stoddard County, Lacy said, where he owned a hotel. He helped take care of many Confederate veterans there.

At the outset of the Civil War, Jeffers enlisted in the Missouri State Guard. In 1861, he commanded a unit of “Mounted Rangers” from Cape Girardeau County. He battled Union militia at what is now known as Marble Hill and at Apple Creek.

In 1862, he resigned his command and joined the Confederate cavalry, eventually commanding the 8th Missouri Cavalry.

bmiller@semissourian.com

243-6635

The “Hit Piece”…

SPLC Lists League as Hate Group

Saturday, January 15, 2005
Southeast Missourian

To the editor:

The Jackson Board of Aldermen may want to know that the League of the South, which is asking the board to display a Confederate battle flag in the city cemetery, is listed as a white supremacist hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The league displays clear antipathy to blacks. Its president, Michael Hill, has stated publicly that the group is against interracial marriage and that slavery is “God-ordained.” The league would like the South to secede and its new league-led government to establish “European cultural hegemony” in the region.

Perhaps more troubling than its ideology is the league’s willingness to keep as one of its Florida leaders Michael Tubbs, a man who stole munitions and weapons from military installations in the early 1990s with the intention of using them to attack black and Jewish targets. When Tubbs’ background was made public late last year by the Southern Poverty Law Center, the league refused to remove him from the group.

Dr. HEIDI BEIRICH, Deputy Director, Intelligence Project, Southern Poverty Law Center, Montgomery, Ala.

For Future Reference…

Before moving on , it is important that you read for yourself, the history of the Southern Poverty Law Center and its founder Morris Dees. Please click on the link below and read for yourself…

https://www.thesocialcontract.com/answering_our_critics/art_morris_dees_fact_sheet.html

My Response…

League refutes SPLC’s claims

Friday, January 21, 2005
Southeast Missourian

To the editor:

A letter from the Southern Poverty Law Center said the League of the South is a white supremacist hate group and noted the criminal activity of one Florida member, Michael Tubbs. The League of the South is in no way affiliated with white supremacists or any hate groups.

I spoke to league president Dr. Michael Hill who informed me that Tubbs’ actions took place prior to joining the League of the South. He pleaded guilty to the crime and spent time in prison, emerging as a reformed man who later joined the league and promised to abide by its mission statement: “We seek to advance the cultural, social, economic and political well-being and independence of the Southern people by all honorable means.”

The SPLC letter quoted Hill as saying “slavery was God ordained.” Hill said this quote was taken from a paper he had written which discussed the historical differences between Southern theologians and abolitionists of the time.

The only motive the league has in its proposal to the Jackson Board of Aldermen is to honor one of Jackson’s finest citizens — and to pay for this project with money from our own pockets.

I hate no one. I am a proud Southerner who was born and raised in Southeast Missouri. The only thing on my record is a citation given to me by the Missouri State Highway Patrol for not wearing my seat belt this past fall.

CLINT E. LACY, Vice Chairman, Missouri League of the South, Marble Hill, Mo.

They Crawl Out of the Woodwork…

Defense of the League is disingenuous

Thursday, January 27, 2005
Southeast Missourian

To the editor:

Clint E. Lacy’s response to the charges that the League of the South was simply promoting Southern culture was disingenuous. The league is promoting the dismantling of our beloved country. Its enemies include both right and left.

The league’s Web site (www.dixienet.org) features quotes of the day such as: “We all have a common enemy — an enemy that is dangerous, powerful and relentless. I refer, of course, to the federal government.” — D. Barry.

The Missouri chapter has a Web site (www.missouriacsa.com/) which will link the inquirer with the Southeast Missouri chapter. Lacy is chairman of this latter association. The Southeast chapter refers to the League of the South as “the premier Southern Nationalist organization.”

The league is promoting “The Grey Book, a Blueprint for Southern Independence.” In a society which did not value diverse points of view, in a country with a constitution which did not protect free speech, such material would be considered offensive, illegal and seditious.

I thank God that we live in a free country where Lacy may spread his treasonable opinions far and wide. But, friends and neighbors, be advised: This movement is dead set against every principle of the government and constitution that makes him free to attack the same.

Lacy’s campaign to plant a Confederate States of America flag at the gravesite of Confederate hero, William Jeffers, (who already has a monument at the Jackson cemetery) is neither an act of patriotism or a gesture of Christian devotion.

The Rev. BOB TOWNER, Cape Girardeau

It’s On!…

U.S. founded on right of secession

Saturday, January 29, 2005
Southeast Missourian

To the editor:

I find myself once again having to defend my reputation and the reputation of the Missouri League of the South. This time it is from the Rev. Bob Towner, who does not like our position supporting secession. There is a concerted effort underway by liberals like Towner who want to wipe clean every piece of American history that is deemed politically incorrect.

Since the end of the War Between the States we have seen the federal government grow and state sovereignty and individual freedoms shrink. These losses of freedoms have significantly increased following 9-11.

America was founded upon the right of secession. The Declaration of Independence was an act of secession against the government of England. Surprising is Towner’s opposition to secession, given the fact that he is a minister of the Episcopal church, which was formed by seceding from the Roman Catholic church.

Where is Towner’s outcry against the proposed secession of the Blue States that are unhappy because they feel America is not liberal enough? Towner’s denomination is once again pondering secession as controversy swirls around the national leadership’s decision to ordain a homosexual bishop.

Liberals like Towner advocate tolerance but are anything but tolerant. Towner implied that I am a traitor to my country. I am not. But I take comfort in knowing that good men like Col. William Jeffers were labeled as such at one time. Yet it was Jeffers’ actions following the Battle of Jackson which prevented the Yankees from burning the town.

CLINT E. LACY, Vice Chairman, Missouri League of the South, Marble Hill, Mo.

Taking Matters into Our Own Hands…

(Note: With the lack of support we received from the National leaders in the League, we decided to go it alone, as it was apparent we were alone from the beginning. Of course when I said that we were not “haters” or “radicals” many in the League assumed that I was insinuating that they were, I was, of course, not insinuating such thing, but the damage was done, and many who I claimed as friends and compatriots turned their backs and a deaf ear. As Country music star Tracy Lawrence recently sang, “You find out who your friends are”. It also illustrates reporter Bob Miller’s insistence on running to the SPLC every time he asked me a question”)

Area chapter to secede from League of the South

Tuesday, February 8, 2005
Bob Miller ~ Southeast Missourian ~ Southeast Missourian

The Southeast Missouri Chapter of the Missouri League of the South has seceded from its parent organization.

The group will now be called the Missouri League of Southern Voters.

The group’s organizer, Marble Hill resident Clint Lacy, said actions and comments made by some League of the South leaders were less than honorable, and the local group withdrew its membership.

Lacy wouldn’t be more specific other than to say the group will no longer have to put out “brush fires.”

“We have no control over what someone in Florida says,” Lacy said.

A Southeast Missourian letter to the editor from the Southern Poverty Law Center alleged that a League of the South leader from Florida stole weapons from military installations in the 1990s intending to use them against black and Jewish targets. The letter, written by Heidi Beirich, deputy director of Intelligence Report magazine, said that even when the man’s background was made public, the league refused to remove him as a member. Intelligence Report is a watchdog for extremist activity.

Beyond wanting to separate itself from less than honorable intentions, Lacy complains the League of the South doesn’t seem to hold true to its stated belief in state sovereignty.

The state chapters, Lacy said, pay dues to the national organization. The members have little say in where the money goes or how it is spent.

The local chapter has drawn criticism in recent weeks after asking the city of Jackson to allow a Missouri Confederate battle flag to be flown over Col. William Jeffers’ grave at Jackson’s city cemetery.

The city board of aldermen discussed the issue briefly at a January study session but said it wanted more information before allowing the flag.

“We aren’t haters. We aren’t radicals,” Lacy said.

Beirich, when contacted by the Southeast Missourian, said she was surprised to hear the news.

Battle Fought to a Draw…

Flag issue in limbo; Jackson board takes no action

Thursday, March 3, 2005
Southeast Missourian ~ Southeast Missourian

It appears that Jackson’s Board of Aldermen has decided not to decide on allowing a Missouri Confederate flag to be flown over Col. William Jeffers’ grave at the city cemetery.

At Monday night’s study session, Clint Lacy, a Confederate history activist and Marble Hill resident, made a presentation to the council, asking that the flag be raised.

This came after he received a letter from Mayor Paul Sander stating that no one on the board wanted to bring the issue to a vote.

Apparently, Lacy’s words didn’t convince the council.

On Wednesday, Sander said he didn’t think any of the council members wanted to bring the matter to a vote, meaning the issue is in something of a coma — not dead, but not going anywhere.

Four people, including two representatives from the Veterans of Foreign Wars, spoke in opposition of the request Monday night. Sander said the board had concerns about setting a precedent and opening up the cemetery to all sorts of flags. He also said that there was no support offered from Jackson residents.

A veteran of the Mexican War, Jeffers commanded Missouri Confederate cavalry during the Civil War. He died in 1903.

A Warning…

It was at the aforementioned city council meeting that I issued a prediction. Addressing the Jackson City Council, I reminded the governing body that while extreme leftist organizations were attacking me over trying to honor a Confederate veteran buried in their city, their school mascot was the “Jackson Indian” and it was prominently displayed on their water tower. Someday leftists would come after THAT symbol as well. That day came 14 years later when Bob Miller, who was now editor of the Southeast Missourian, made the case that the school’s mascot should be changed. This can be found in his column published on 2 / 27/ 2019 under the title “An idea for a new Jackson mascot.”

What Goes Around, Comes Around…

A theory about Sander’s defeat

Sunday, August 13, 2006
Southeast Missourian

To the editor:

The Southeast Missourian carried an article on the unexpected defeat of Jackson Mayor Paul Sander in his bid to become the next Cape Girardeau County clerk stating: “Conventional wisdom suggested that Sander, latest in a family line of officeholders, would be a formidable if not unbeatable candidate.” The same article also quotes Cape Girardeau Mayor (and Sander crony) Jay Knudtson, who stated, “What led to Clark’s lopsided victory is only speculation.”

I have my own theory. In February 2005 I was attempting to win approval from the Jackson Board of Aldermen to erect a Missouri battle flag in honor of Col. William Jeffers. The effort was derailed by a hit piece from the Southern Poverty Law Center that was printed in the Southeast Missourian. I wrote my own letter in response to clear up any misconceptions about me.

When I addressed Mayor Sander and the board of aldermen, I quoted heavily from the Morris Dees fact sheet found at the following Web address: http://www.patriotist.com/dees.htm. It exposes many unknown facts about the organization. However, it was clear their minds were made up.

Among those who spoke in opposition to honoring Colonel Jeffers was one of the biggest liberal organizations in America, the ACLU. During the entire time the ACLU representative was speaking, Mayor Sander was smiling, nodding in approval.

Sanders can now join the ranks of other South-hating ex-politicians from Missouri: Gov. Bob Holden, U.S. Rep. Richard Gephardt and Speaker of the House Catherine Hanaway.

CLINT E. LACY, Marble Hill, Mo.

In Retrospect…

All in all, the battle was fought to a draw. Neither I , nor our newly organized Missouri League of Southern Voters were able to convince the Jackson Board of Alderman to honor Colonel William Jeffers with a Missouri Battle Flag.

On the other hand, the Southern Poverty Law Center was unsuccessful in their efforts to portray me as a racist or a terrorist for that matter. The “reverend” Bob Towner was unsuccessful in trying to portray me as a traitor. The next day the issue was covered on local radio stations , who described me with words such as “historian” and “Confederate flag activist”.

The real loser in this was Colonel Jeffers, who was denied the honor for saving the City of Jackson during the War Between the States, and who fought against the Ku Klux Klan in Southeast Missouri following the war. At one time the citizens of Jackson were proud enough of him to bury him in their cemetery and erect a prominent monument at the cemetery’s entrance.

The citizens of Jackson lost as well, because it was evident that they did not have leaders to defend their heritage and their history. What they got , were leaders who bowed to ultra-liberal , left-wing organizations, because they were afraid of an ill-conceived, concocted “controversy” by them.

I’ll never forget the ACLU representative who showed up “fashionably late” to the meeting I attended. A tall attractive blond, dressed in a very form fitting business suit, who proclaimed that she was concerned about the cemetery’s proximity to the school and what effect it would have on “the children” as Mayor Sander and Councilman Baker stared starry eyed at her.

Also in my memory is the member of the Cape Civil War Round Table, who showed up to proclaim that when he first heard about our proposal, he thought it smelled of “the Klan”. What he didn’t tell the council members is that one of our own members, also belonged to the Cape Civil War Roundtable, and quickly silenced him at one of their meetings when he tried to disrupt it with such talk.  Jim Herrod  was a good man, and a former aid to Representative Bill Burllison, he was very ill when I attended the meeting  that the round table member cried “Klan” at. The round table member knew Jim was too ill to attend himself, which makes his act even more despicable.

Jim would die a little over a year after the time of that meeting, he is very missed. The roundtable member died about a year later, can’t say that I miss him a whole lot.

The VFW and American Legion not only changed their mind about supporting the project, they were downright rude about it, one of the leaders wouldn’t even talk to me before the meeting. The next year a local Cape Girardeau, Missouri ladies auxiliary would wonder why there was so little support for the Veteran’s Day parade.

Bob Miller (the Southeast Missourian reporter) would soon here from my brother who asked him if he could do his job without getting permission from Heidi (the Deputy Director of the SPLC Intelligence Project), he also provided him with a copy of the Morris Dees Fact Sheet.

Bob replied by stating that he probably wouldn’t use them as a source again, which was comforting knowing that he had helped them kill my flag project.  He would later go on to write about having to sleep with a roll of toilet paper at night, because of his allergies, which at least brought the wrath of one angry reader who in a March 18th, 2006 Letter to the Editor wrote:

“To the editor:

The March 12 “His and hers” column (“All hail Wilson, conqueror of snot monsters”) by Callie Clark Miller and Bob Miller was a full column of total disgust. Bob Miller’s body fluids are of no interest to any of your readers, I’m sure.

As a former language teacher, I can assure you if one of my students had written this, I’d have given him an F.

The numerous references to Miller’s “snot” (and I am quoting here) certainly ruined my appetite for breakfast that morning.

What in the world were you thinking? How could this article slip by you? I’m still grossed out and will continue to be every time I think about it. This was very poor taste.

P. BOLLINGER, Marble Hill, Mo.”

Not to be deterred, Miller would later write about his wife’s miscarriage (normally a thing people keep to themselves) in an April 2,2006 article entitled, “The Growing Pains of a Family” he described the event in detail stating:

“Finally after hours of going back and forth from the bathroom to the couch, my wife passed what I first saw as a black spot on the computer monitor. The books say to collect the tissue, in case your doctor wants to test it to determine the cause. The books don’t say how you’re supposed to do this. Callie had me fetch a Tupperware dish and a plastic spoon”

And to think all of these people were worried about me possibly offending the public by trying to raise a flag for Colonel William Jeffers, C.S.A.?

Interview with Bollinger County Resident Denny Cato

Denny Cato was hired as a maintenance supervisor for the City of Marble Hill, (a rural community in Bollinger County, Missouri) on October 1, 2014. According to Cato his duties included maintaining the City’s streets, water lines and other infrastructure.

The operator of a gravel business before taking the job Cato stated that at the time he was hired, he occasionally used personal equipment from that business in order to carry out his duties, noting that he provided the City with 200 loads of gravel.

Cato was employed by the City from October 1, 2014- September 11, 2020 after accusations of “consuming or possessing alcohol” on the job, an accusation he denied. Initially suspended for two weeks (pending an investigation in the matter), he was allowed to return to work after no evidence could be obtained to verify the claim. Shortly thereafter he was terminated from his position.

The following video interview was conducted with Mr. Cato at his residence on July 21, 2022. In it, Cato shares the story of his nearly six-year relationship with the City, personal struggles he endured and what he feels were the real reasons his employment was terminated.

Because this story involves a sitting elected official along with the elected official’s wife (who is currently running for office) I feel it is timely and of great interest to the public. It should also be noted that since the upcoming primary election is for candidates running for county-wide offices, all residents of Bollinger County, Missouri are eligible to vote in it.

In addition to the 29 minute long video interview with Mr. Cato, I have uploaded documents provided by him. Of particular interest is one document which contains a hand-written note by Marble Hill Mayor Trey Wiginton which states, “Nobody signed a statement that Denny bought alcohol on the job. Denny is allowed to return to work and will receive pay for the two weeks of suspension. Pension and insurance will not be affected. 9/08/2020- Trey Wiginton.”

When asked if he felt there were other reasons for his termination of employment Cato noted that he never received any disciplinary action until President of the Bollinger County Chamber of Commerce Becky Wiginton (who is Marble Hill Mayor Trey Wiginton’s wife) wanted Cato to run water and sewer lines to a caboose located in Railroad Park (ostensibly so it could be used as an office for the Chamber of Commerce). Cato said he refused on the grounds that he considered the caboose a historic landmark. Below is his story in video and pictures. I leave it up to those who view them to make up their own minds.

Infraction Denny Cato received 12/ 20/2020 for saying the term “bullshit” on a two-way radio
Letter from the City of Marble Hill with hand-written note from Mayor Trey Wignton stating that allegations against Cato could not be proven and that Cato may return to work.
Disciplinary letter written by City of Marble Hill Administrator Mike Johnson stating that he and Denny Cato had “words” on 9-10-2020 about his prior write-ups (note document was not signed by Cato).

Notes from closed session city council meeting on 09/11/2020 (obtained via a Sunshine Law request) in which the Board of Alderman voted to terminate Denny Cato’s employment.
A letter dated September 30, 2020 from Marble Hill City Attorney Richard Whiffen demanding that Denny Cato stop entering non-public City property or interfering with City employees under threat of arrest. Cato maintains that he had not entered non-public City property or interfered with any City employees since his termination of employment on 09/11/2020.

Colonel Jeffers Captures Dallas (Marble Hill)

23 Aug 1862, Sat The Perryville Weekly Union (Perryville, Missouri) Newspapers.com

The August 23, 1862 edition of the Perryville Weekly Union reports that Colonel Jeffers (of the 8th Missouri Cavalry, CSA ) entered Dallas with around sixty men and surrounded several homes in which members of the Union state militia were encamped. The paper also reported that all were released on oath except their commander Captain Green, who was taken prisoner. The Perryville Weekly Union labeled Jeffers (who they incorrectly referred to as Jefferies) as a “notorious” rebel (which is also incorrect). Colonel Jeffers was an officer in the regular Confederate army and conducted himself honorably both during and after the war.

It was not uncommon for newspapers at the time to label Confederates as “rebels”, “guerrillas” or “bushwhackers.” Of course, any paper who did not utilize this practice ran the risk of being closed down under orders of the Lincoln administration. An example of this can also be found in the same edition of the Perryville Weekly Union which printed the following:

“The St. Genevieve Plaindealers:

This secession paper, published at St. Genevieve, Mo., has been oppressed by the federal authorities. Charles A. Weber Esq., our Provost Marshall, took possession of the office Friday last.”

Illinois Invades Bollinger County

From the January 18, 1862 issue of the Daily Missouri Republican

One of the problems faced by Missourians who cast their lot with the South is the fact that they faced far more than German immigrants loyal to Lincoln. If that was their only foe they might have been more successful in defending the state from what they perceived as heavy handed tactics to keep Missouri in the Union by federal authorities. Missourians would have to defend themselves from invasion from the neighboring states of Kansas, Illinois and Iowa with a large portion of Wisconsin troops who would later be sent here.

By January, 1861 Illinois troops found there way to Bollinger County. As the January 18, 1861 issue of St. Louis’s Daily Missouri Republican reported:

“Major Rault, with Illinois Cavalry yesterday, made a forced march on the town of Dallas, Bollinger County, Mo., at this point under orders from Col. Ross, Seventeenth Regiment, Illinois Volunteers, commanding post. They returned last night, capturing twenty-three prisoners, among them Captain Day, Quartermaster, First Battalion Independent Rangers, and also a Mr. Tate, nephew of Honorable J.W. Noel. All of them were members of Thompson’s army.”

Carpenter’s Court Martial

From the Daily Missouri Republican, November 17, 1863

The November 17, 1863 Daily Missouri Republican (St. Louis, Missouri) reported of court-martial proceedings against Captain John Carpenter, Company C, 2cd Arkansas Volunteers (Union). It appears that Captain Carpenter was briefly stationed in Bollinger County, Missouri and feared an attack by Confederate forces. In his haste the paper states that he burned “government bacon and pork” to prevent it from falling into the hands of Confederate forces. That attack never materialized and Captain Carpenter soon found himself in Cape Girardeau, Missouri charged with cowardice and gross neglect of duty. On the charge of cowardice, he was found not guilty, he was however, found guilty of gross neglect of duty, sentenced to make good on the loss, forfeiture of pay and dismissed from service.

According to information found at the National Park Service’s Civil War Soldiers and Sailors website, the 2cd Arkansas Union Volunteers was formed in Helena, Arkansas and Pilot Knob, Missouri. Below is the history of this unit provided by their website:

UNION ARKANSAS VOLUNTEERS

2nd Regiment, Arkansas Cavalry

OVERVIEW:Organized at Helena, Ark., and Pilot Knob, Mo., July 1862. Attached to Helena, Ark., District of the Southwest Missouri, Dept. Missouri, to December, 1862. 2nd Brigade, 3rd Cavalry Division, District Eastern Arkansas, to January, 1863. 2nd Brigade, 2nd Cavalry Division, 13th Army Corps, Dept. Tennessee, to April 1863. 2nd Brigade, Cavalry Division, District of Eastern Arkansas, Dept. Tennessee, to May, 1863. District of the Southwest Missouri, Dept. Missouri, to October, 1864. 3rd Brigade, Cavalry Division, Dept. Missouri, to January, 1865. Unattached Cavalry, District West Tennessee, to February, 1865. 1st Brigade, Cavalry Division, District West Tennessee, to August, 1865.

SERVICE:Duty at Helena, Ark., till April, 1863. At Fayetteville, Ark., till July 1863, and at Cassville, Mo., till September, 1864. (Co. “B” at Benton Barracks, Mo., June, 1863. At Cape Girardeau, Mo., July, 1863. Scout from Cape Girardeau to the Ash Hills and Poplar Bluff, Mo., August 9-18. Skirmish, Ash Hills, August 13. Expedition from Cape Girardeau to Pocahantas, Ark., August 18-26. Skirmishes, Pocahontas, August 22-23.) Elm Springs July 30. Near Fayette August 23 (Detachment). Jenny Lind September 1. Crawford County November 25. Barronsville, Searcy County, December 26. Waldron December 29. King’s River January 10, 1864. Operations against Guerrillas in Northwest Arkansas, in Newton, Searcy, Izzard and Carroll Counties, January 16-February 15. Lewisburg January 17. Clear Creek and Tomahawk January 22. Bailey’s or Crooked Creek January 23 (Co. “C”). Crooked Creek February 5. Tomahaw Gap February 9. Expedition from Rolling Prairie to Batesville February 19-April 4. Scouts from Yellville to Buffalo River March 13-26. Oil Trough Bottom March 24 (Detachment). Near White River March 25. Constant scouting and skirmishing with Guerillas. Scouts from Bellefonte March 29-April 1. Whiteley’s Mills April 5. Piney Mountain April 6. Osage Branch King’s River April 16 (Co. “A”). Limestone Valley April 17. King’s River April 19. Near mouth of Richland Creek May 3 and 5. Scout in Northern Arkansas May 17-22 (Co. “M”). Scout from Cassville to Cross Hollows June 9-14 and June 20-24. Near Maysville July 20. Operations in Southwest Missouri and Northwest Arkansas August 15-24. Scout from Ozark, Mo., to Dubuque Crossing and Sugar Loaf Prairie August 23-26 (Detachment). Expedition from Cassville, Mo., to Fayetteville, Ark., August 23-28 (Detachment). Gerald Mountain and Mud Town August 24. Operations against Price August 29-December 2. Moreau Creek, Jefferson City, October 7. Russellville October 9. California October 9. Near Booneville October 11-12. Fort Smith, Ark., October 14 (Detachment). Dover October 20. Little Blue October 21. Independence, Big Blue and State Line October 22. Big Blue and Westport October 23. Little Osage, Mine Creek, Marais des Cygnes, October 25. Engagement on the Marmiton, or Battle of Charlot, October 25. Newtonia October 28. Upshaw’s Farm October 29. Expedition from Springfield, Mo., to Fort Smith, Ark., November 5-16. Near Cincinnati, Ark., November 6. Scout from Springfield to Huntsville and Yellville November 11-21. Ordered to Memphis, Tenn., January, 1865. Duty there and in District of West Tennessee till August. Mustered out August 20, 1865.

Botched Attack in Bollinger County

21 Nov 1862, Fri The Perryville Weekly Union (Perryville, Missouri) Newspapers.com

The November 21, 1862 edition of the Perryville Weekly Union newspaper carried the story of a Captain Johnson, who resided in Bollinger County, Missouri and was attacked at his home by a Emanuel Grounds, who was accompanied by 14- 15 men.

The attack went badly for Grounds and his men when Captain Johnson met them at the door of his home. Grounds fired his weapon, missing Johnson. Johnson’s weapon found its mark when he returned fire, striking Grounds in the heart and killing him instantly, at which time the rest of Ground’s party scattered, leaving behind horses (one of which was stolen from Judge Conrad) , a mule and other supplies.

The Perryville Union described Grounds as a “Rebel Chief” and the men who accompanied him as “Hell Hounds” and “Guerrilla Thieves.”

A quick research of Emanuel Grounds military status reveals that he was a member of the 8th Missouri Confederate Cavalry Company A, commanded by William Jeffers of Jackson, Missouri. Oddly enough, records do not show Grounds rank when he joined the 8th Missouri Cavalry, CSA. Nor did it show his rank when he left.

Did Grounds, leave the 8th Missouri CSA and strike out on his own like so many Missouri Southerners did as the war progressed?

The Perryville Weekly Union did not provide the first name of Captain Johnson, which makes it difficult to positively identify him or what unit he served under. Searching the U.S. Park Service Civil War Soldiers and Sailors database I did find a Captain J.J.P. Johnson of the 1’st U.S. Reserves / Homeguard but when I click on the link for the history of the unit the website simply states “no information available for this unit.”

Remembering Arcadia

I recently discovered a treasure trove of articles I had written dating back to 2003 which documented efforts to combat what many of us felt was a grave injustice to Missouri history by the Governor of Missouri at the time.

On January 15, 2003 the Washington Post published an article reporting that [then] Missouri Governor Bob Holden had ordered Confederate flags removed at historic sites located at Higginsville and Pilot Knob, Missouri. Of course no politician wakes up one morning and is plagued by thoughts of flags flying at historic sites. It just so happened that Governor Holden’s good friend ,Congressman Richard Gephardt, was running for president and suggested that the flags needed to be removed. The Washington Post reported:

“State officials took down Confederate flags at two historic sites today after Democratic presidential hopeful Richard A. Gephardt said they shouldn’t be flown anywhere.

Confederate battle flags were removed at the Confederate Memorial Historic Site and the Fort Davidson Historic Site, said Sue Holst, spokeswoman for the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. The flags will still be displayed inside the sites’ visitor centers.

Over the weekend, Gephardt said: “My own personal feeling is that the Confederate flag no longer has a place flying any time, anywhere in our great nation.”

Mary Still, spokeswoman for Gov. Bob Holden (D), said she called Natural Resources Director Steve Mahfood after reading a news report about Gephardt’s statement.

“I told Steve it seemed to me it wouldn’t be appropriate to have it flying on a flagpole, but that I didn’t know all of their considerations, and I left it in his lap,” Still said. The Missouri leader of a Confederate heritage organization said politicians were trying to erase state history.

“They take our tax money and then they turn around and try to destroy our heritage,” said Gene Dressel, state commander of Sons of Confederate Veterans.”

Later that year I would come up with the idea of placing Confederate flags on private property for those who wanted to fly them. If the Governor took two flags down, we would put hundreds up in their place. We chose the Arcadia Valley in Missouri’s Eastern Ozarks as our first location and I began to reach out to local business owners in the area about our idea. It was not long before I made some very good contacts and began to organize like minded individuals to help in the effort.

By July 5, 2003 we met in Arcadia to kick off the event. Below is a summary of the events that transpired that day:

Return to Arcadia:

The Kick Off of the Missouri Flag Campaign

By: Clint E. Lacy

This past Saturday July 5th, 2003 will be a day that I will never forget as long as I live. On Memorial Day this past May I went to the Arcadia Valley and for the first time saw the empty flag pole where the Second National Confederate flag once flew, at the Fort Davidson Historic Site. It was then and there that I decided I must do something to combat the Missouri politicians plan to implement their politically correct agenda in our state.

U.S. Representative Richard Gephardt from Democrat from Missouri started this whole fiasco in January 2003 while campaigning in South Carolina. Missouri Governor Bob Holden also a Democrat fulfilled his wishes by removing a Confederate battle flag at the Higginsville, Mo. Confederate cemetery, and another Second National Confederate Flag at the Fort Davidson State Historic Site in Pilot Knob, Missouri. Those who were expecting Missouri’s Republicans to combat this were soon disappointed when Republican Senators Bond and Talent publicly stated that they supported the Governor’s decision to remove the flags.

It was through my writing that I met my good friends the Warren Family of Bridgeport, Illinois, and Frank Carlton, chairman of the Missouri League of the South. I told Frank of my flag campaign idea and he was immediately on board and making phone calls and raising support for our cause. Terry Warren was equally supportive and gave me invaluable advice and also raised much support for our cause. Through Frank I met Richard Gibbs also of the League of the South, whom I have also become a very good friend with. And last but not least Jamie and Cody Wiles, owners of the Arcadia Cafe who got the other businesses on board.

The Arcadia was our rendezvous point for the Warren’s, the Gibb’s and the Lacy’s Saturday. Cody also introduced us to some new friends as well. One of the was Ron Warren and his wife Sandy. Ron used to be involved in the Friends of Fort Davidson organization but resigned because he was asked not to speak out about the controversy. He is a very principled man and continues to teach about Southern Heritage. The other was Mrs. Polly Hollie who is a member of the Arcadia Historical Society.

Terry Warren presented Illinois Sons of Confederate veteran’s award to Cody and her husband Jamie in recognition of the help they have contributed to our Flag Campaign. We all then loaded up and drove to Ironton to present Mr. Jerry Turner with a Second National Confederate flag to display at his antique shop. Mr. Turner was happy to see us and very supportive of our efforts. We got out Richard’s tools and hung the flagpole and holder for Mr. Turner. We then thanked him and bid him adieu.

We then set off for our third stop of the day, Baylee Jo’s Southern BBQ. The owner’s name is Chris Sullinger. Chris named his business after his daughter Baylee. He too is upset with the Governor’s decision to remove the Confederate flags in Missouri. He told me that he was a flight attendant for years and had met people from all around the world.

“There’s not a racist bone in my body”, Mr. Sullinger told me. He then added, “ I teach my daughter to treat people, as you would want to be treated”. It is at this point I must add that this seems to be the general feeling of most of the residents in the Arcadia Valley.

Most feel that the Governor had no right to rewrite history for the sake of political gain. I talked some more to Mr. Sullinger and found that he is not only supporting the Missouri Flag Campaign for his own heritage but also for Baylee Jo. Mr. Sullinger informed me that Baylee’s ancestors on her mother’s side of the family were all Southerners from Mississippi. “Men fought and died for this flag”, Mr. Sullinger added. He also expressed his opinion that they should be honored by flying the Confederate flag in the area’s that they fought and died.

All of us had an enjoyable visit with Chris Sullinger. We mounted his Second National on a tree that is on his property clearly visible from Missouri Hwy 21. We thanked him and he thanked us and we loaded up again.

This time Mrs. Hollie wanted to show us a Lutheran Church that had been built prior to the War Between the States and also served as a Union hospital during and after the Battle of Pilot Knob, Missouri. She opened the doors with the original key to the church. “Ms. Polly”, as we called her took us on a trip back in time as she told us of the history of the church and showed us the old school room upstairs and the backroom of the church that still has the bloodstain of Union soldiers on the floor. Sadly she is facing her own preservation problems. The Lutheran Church does not want to preserve the site and she has received little help from the other Lutheran Church in town. So if you’re ever in Arcadia please look up Ms. Polly and take the tour of the church, and also if you have it, donate a little money to preserve this piece of history.

After the tour of the church, we went to the Arcadia Cafe for lunch. Jamie and Cody were swamped so we found out there would be a bit of a wait. “Ms. Polly” invited us all to tour her home to pass some time. “It’s just a couple of blocks away”, “Ms. Polly” told us. So we all started to follow her home (Terry very wisely went back for the van so we wouldn’t have to walk back.)

Ms. Polly’s property was beautiful, again a step back in time. She told the women and children that she had a collection of over 4,000 dolls. And as if a mind reader she brought me the key to her husband’s shop and told us to go check out his car collection. After a while we decided to try the Arcadia again. Terry took the women and children in the van as Richard and I started back on foot.

We talked about how friendly the people of Arcadia and the surrounding communities were. It was amazing how hospitable they and how they all respected history as we did. Especially “Ms. Polly”, who told me after posing for a picture while hanging Jerry Turner’s flag, “ Son, make sure you take your hat off next time”.

Terry then showed up as Richard and I were walking and talking. He pulled up to the curb so we could get in. “we didn’t expect you to come back for us”, I said. To which Terry replied, “ A good commander always takes care of the women and children first, but he never forgets his men!”. Terry Warren is certainly a man of his word.

Back at the Arcadia we ordered our meal and before we ate, Richard asked if we minded if he said a prayer, to which there were no objections. He prayed for our meal and our cause and thanked God for this special day of fellowship.

We started to eat and unwind thinking the day was winding down when we saw Chris Sullinger, the owner of Baylee Joes BBQ , pull up outside the Arcadia Cafe and run in excitedly. We were fearful that he might have found trouble by hanging up his new Second National flag, but it was quite the opposite.

“Your never going to believe this”, Chris exclaimed. “Jimmy VanZant cousin of the famous Ronnie and Johnny VanZant of Lynyrd Skynyrd fame had driven by and saw it flying. He stopped in and told Chris he had been looking for a Second National Confederate flag but had not been able to find one. He asked Chris if he could have his and Chris asked us if we’d mind if he gave it to Jimmie.

“Nope, not at all”, I replied. We agreed it would be no trouble at all to get Chris another flag.

Chris told us that before Jimmy stopped by he had already received several positive comments and thank you’s for flying it.

“Jimmy is giving a concert at Lesterville tonight for about 2000 people”, Chris said. He then went on to say

“Clint he wants you to write a speech so he could tell the crowd about the Missouri flag campaign!”.

I asked “Ms. Polly for a piece of paper and wrote the speech. Chris also said that Jimmy VanZant had also found out that he played drums and invited him to the concert to play on the song “Sweet Home Alabama”.

Terry looked at me and said, “It’s out of your hands and in God’s hands now Clint”

“I can’t believe this” I said, while looking at everyone.

“It could only happen in Arcadia”, Ms. Polly replied.

To which I answered, “I believe you’re right Ms. Polly”.

Slavery & Stereotypes in Confederate Arkansas

Charlie Rigger, talking about harsh treatment of slaves by Union soldiers in Arkansas.

It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything. I have had many irons in the fire but today some Facebook memories popped up in my notifications and I thought they were worth sharing. A result of some research I had been doing a few years back, the information dealt with the harsh treatment of slaves by Union soldiers in Confederate Arkansas. Most of us were taught that the Civil War (War of Northern Aggression, War Between the States etc) was a noble endeavor to free the slaves from bondage in the South. However, a review of the facts reveals that Northern attitudes toward race did not reflect the humanitarian propaganda being distributed from Washington, D.C.

From The Slave Narratives, Volume 2, Part 6, page 40. Interview with former slave Charlie Rigger talking about treatment they received from the Yankees:

“I recollect the soldiers come by in July, 1863 or 1864 and back in December. I heard talk so long ‘fore they got there , I knowed who they was. They took my oldest brother. He didn’t want to go. We never heard from him. He never came back. My white master hid out. He didn’t go to war. One son went and came back. It was the Yankees made my oldest brother go. The first crowd in July swapped their wore-out scrub stock for our good stock. The second crowd cleaned them out, took our hogs. Miss Betty had died ‘fore they come in July. That second crowd come in December. They cleaned out everything to eat and wear. They set the house ‘fire several times with paper and coal oil (kerosene). It went out every time. One told the captain. He come up behind. It went out every time. He said, “Let’s move on.” They left it clean and bare. We didn’t like them.”

From the Slave Narratives, Arkansas, Vol. 2 pg. 33. Interview with former slave Shepherd Rhone, Pine Bluff , Arkansas:

“I know when the Yankees come I run from em. When peace declared, the Yankees come all through our house and took everything they could get ahold of to eat. The only reason the Yankees whipped the South is they starved em.”

From the Arkansas Slave Narratives, interview with former slave Josephine Ann Barnett of Devalls Bluff , Arkansas:

“The slaves hated the Yankees. They treated them mean. They was having a big time. They didn’t like the slaves. They steal from the slaves too. Some poor folks didn’t have slaves.”

Clint Lacy– is author of Blood in the Ozarks: Expanded Second Edition

Happy Missouri Secession Day!

On October 28, 1861 the Missouri legislature convened at the Masonic Hall in Neosho, Missouri and passed an ordinance of secession, abolishing its ties with the Union. A month later the state was admitted into the newly formed Confederacy.

After the Missouri State Guard secured victories at Wilson’s Creek (near Springfield, Missouri) in August, 1861 and Lexington, Missouri in September, 1861, the Missouri Legislature met at the Masonic Hall in Neosho, Missouri on October 28, 1861 to debate the subject of secession from the Union.

With the attempt at maintaining a neutral stance in regard to the war having failed and the legally elected legislature being forced out of the state capital at Jefferson City by the threat of the Union army, Missouri’s elected officials had but little choice to cast its lot with the Confederacy. As I noted in my book “Blood in the Ozarks: Expanded Second Edition”:

“The Missouri legislature met in Neosho and passed an ordinance of secession in October , 1861 and was admitted into the Confederacy in Nov. 1861 (though they never controlled the state again).

It has been written in the history books that the secession was not legal because there was not a quorum in the Missouri House or Senate present. According to Col. Moore, this was not the case:

“The Legislature passed an act of secession. In every particular it complied with the forms of law. It was called together in extraordinary session by the proclamation of the governor. There was a quorum of each house present. The governor sent to the two houses his message recommending, among other things, the passage of an act dissolving all political connection between the State of Missouri and the United States of America. The ordinance was passed strictly in accordance with law and parliamentary usage, was signed by the presiding officers of the two houses, attested by John T. Crisp, secretary of the senate, and Thomas M. Murray, clerk of the house, and approved by Claiborne F. Jackson, governor of the State. The legislature also elected members of the Provisional Congress of the Confederate government, among whom were Gen. John B. Clark, who was succeeded in his military command by Col. Edwin W. Price, a son of Gen. Sterling Price, and Gen. Thomas A. Harris, who was succeeded in his military command by Col. Martin E. Green.”

Missouri would forever be known as “The 12th Star of the Confederacy.”

After the Union victory at the Battle of Pea Ridge, Arkansas on March 7-8, 1862, the Union effectively controlled Missouri leaving mostly partisan factions to resist the occupation forces.

The Missouri government would find itself in exile and it’s new capital would be located in Marshall, Texas for the remainder of the war.