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Time Line: 1861

January 3, 1861

Claiborne Fox Jackson takes office as the 15th Governor of Missouri.

January 29, 1861

Kansas is admitted to Union as a free state.

February 19, 1861

Charles R. “Doc” Jennison becomes Captain of the Mound City Guards.

March 4, 1861

Abraham Lincoln is inaugurated as President of the United States of America.

April 4, 1861

James H. Lane and Samuel C. Pomeroy are chosen by the Kansas state legislature to be United States Senators.

April 12, 1861

The American Civil War begins when CSA forces under the command of Brigadier General P.G.T. Beauregard begin the bombardment of Fort Sumter.

April 15, 1861

President Abraham Lincoln issues a proclamation calling up 75,000 militia for three months service.

April 17, 1861

Missouri Governor Jackson condemns President Lincoln's call for volunteers and refuses to comply.

April 20, 1861

United States Arsenal at Liberty, Missouri, seized.

April 30, 1861

A drunken horde of Southern sympathizers march into Kansas City carrying a Confederate flag and beat up Union sympathizers.

May 4, 1861

United States ordnance stores seized at Kansas City, Missouri.

May 10, 1861

Camp Jackson Affair - Union forces under the command of Brigadier General Nathaniel Lyon surround and force the surrender of Missouri State Guard forces. During march of the prisoners back to Jefferson Barracks, the Union forces clash with civilians resulting in the deaths of 28 civilians and two soldiers.

May 11, 1861

Riot in Saint Louis, Missouri.

Brig. Gen. William S. Harney, U. S. Army, resumes command of the Department of the West. Harney had relinquished command April 23, pursuant to orders of April 21, and Capt. Nathaniel Lyon, Second U. S. Infantry, seems to have exercised command during General Harney's absence.

May 12, 1861

Missouri Governor Jackson appoints Sterling Price as the commander of the Missouri State Guard.

May 13, 1861

Brigadier General Ben McCulloch, C. S. Army, assigned to command in the Indian Territory.

May 21, 1861

Convention between General Harney and Maj. Gen. Sterling Price, Missouri State Guard.

The City Council of St. Joseph, Missouri passes an ordinance outlawing the flying of United States flag.

May 31, 1861

Brigadier General Nathaniel Lyon, U. S. Army, supersedes General Harney.

June 6, 1861

Missouri transferred to the Department of the Ohio, commanded by Major General George B. McClellan, U. S. Army.

Jun 11, 1861

To preserve the peace in Missouri Brigadier General Nathaniel Lyon, Congressman Frank Blair, Major General Sterling Price and Governor Claiborne Jackson meet in St. Louis. After several hours of contentious discussion, Lyon declares war on Governor Jackson and the Missouri State Guard and storms out of the meeting.

June 17, 1861

In command of Union forces, Brigadier General Nathaniel Lyon takes possession of Boonville at 11:00 A.M. after routing the Missouri State Guard defenders under the command of Colonel John Marmaduke. The Missouri State Guard retreats to southwestern Missouri.

July 5, 1861

The Battle of Carthage - About ten miles north of Carthage, Missouri, a Union Infantry Brigade (1,100 men) under the command of Colonel Franz Sigel fought the Missouri State Guard (4,000 armed, 2,000 unarmed) under the command of Missouri Governor Claiborne Jackson. Recognizing that he was outnumbered and in danger of being flanked and captured, Sigel began an organized withdrawal from the field of battle. A running battle raged for the rest of the day and Sigel was able to escape to Sarcoxie, Missouri.

July 25, 1861

Major General John C. Fremont, U. S. Army, assumes command of the Western Department.

July 28, 1861

New Madrid, Missouri., occupied by Confederate troops.

July 29, 1861

Brigadier General John Pope, U. S. Army, assumes command in Northern Missouri.

August 5, 1861

The Battle of Athens – Missouri Home Guard (Union) forces under the command of Colonel David Moore skirmish and defeat Missouri State Guard forces under the command of Colonel Martin E. Green near the Iowa border in northeast Missouri.

August 2, 1861

The Battle of Dug Springs - Union Cavalry forces under the command of Captain Frederick Steele skirmished with and defeated Missouri State Guard forces under the command of Brigadier General James S. Rains near Clever, Missouri.

August 8, 1861

Brigadier General U. S. Grant, U. S. Army, assumes command of the District of Ironton, Missouri.

August 10, 1861

The Battle of Wilson's Creek - The Union Army of the West under the command of Brigadier General Nathaniel Lyon attacked a combined force of the Confederate States of America and the Missouri State Guard that were under the command of Confederate Brigadier General Benjamin McCulloch. The fighting resulted in a Confederate victory when the Federals withdrew to Springfield, Missouri following the death of General Lyon. Nathaniel Lyon was the first US General killed in action in the American Civil War.

August 30, 1861

Major General John C. Fremont, commanding Union forces of the west, orders martial law imposed in Missouri. Order also allows for the confiscation of real and personal property of those in rebellion against Union.

“Emancipation Proclamation” issued by General Fremont.

September 1, 1861

Brigadier General U. S. Grant, U S Army, assumes command in Southeastern Missouri.

September 2, 1861

The Battle of Dry Wood Creek – After Wilson's Creek, Missouri State Guard commander Sterling Price headed north for the Missouri River Valley. Near Fort Scott, Kansas, he engaged and drove off a Union cavalry force commanded by Colonel James H. Lane.

The State of Arkansas and all military operations in Missouri placed under the command of Maj. Gen. Leonidas Polk, commanding Confederate Department No. 2.

September 4, 1861

Charles R. “Doc” Jennison receives commission as a Colonel in Kansas Volunteers from Kansas Governor Charles L. Robinson.

September 17, 1861

Brigadier General B. M. Prentiss, U. S. Army, assigned to command along and north of the Hannibal and Saint Joseph Railroad.

September 17-20, 1861

Battle of Lexington, Missouri-Confederate Victory. Also know as The Battle of the Hemp Bales, Confederate General Sterling Price defeats Colonel James A. Mulligan with his superior force of 10,000 men. Total casualties between both sides are 2,500. Although an important victory for Price and His efforts to secure Missouri for the South, he is unable to hold on to the strategic port on the Missouri River and retreats to southern Missouri. Future guerrilla chieftain, William Clarke Quantrill participates in the battle, but purportedly deserts at Osceola, Missouri on Price’s retreat south and he returns to Blue Springs, Missouri and stays in the company of Morgan Walker.

September 23, 1861

The Sacking of Osceola – Kansas Jayhawkers under the command of James H. Lane pillage the town of Osceola, Missouri. Lane convicts nine civilians at a court-martial and orders them shot. All the buildings in the town but 3 are burned, including the courthouse and all its records. Property valued at $1,000,000 is either stolen or destroyed.

September 29, 1861

James H. Lane, known as the “Grim Chieftain” enters Kansas City with a rag tag group of Jayhawkers.

October 16, 1861

Descent upon Lexington, Missouri, by Union troops.

October 24, 1861

Major General David Hunter, U. S. Army, ordered to supersede General Fremont.

October 25, 1861

Action at Springfield, Missouri.

October 28, 1861

Colonel Charles R. Jennison completes the mustering of the Seventh Kansas Cavalry regiment that will become known as “Jennison's Jayhawkers.”

November 2, 1861

General Fremont relieved by Major-General Hunter.

November 9, 1861

The Department of the Missouri constituted.

The Department of Kansas constituted.

November 7, 1861

The Battle of Belmont – Union forces under the command of Brigadier General Ulysses S. Grant defeated Confederate forces under the command of Brigadier General Gideon J. Pillow near Belmont, Missouri.

November 12, 1861

Daniel R. Anthony, abolitionist jayhawker and a brother of Susan B. Anthony, while serving under Dr. Charles R. (Doc) Jennison commander of the Independent Mounted Kansas Jayhawkers enters Kansas City in a solemn march ironically characterized as a “funeral procession.” Within days, the countryside outside Kansas City is aflame by Anthony’s troops, causing hundreds to flee. Anthony is the publisher of the Daily Conservative newspaper in Leavenworth, Kansas.

November 19, 1861

Major General Henry W. Halleck, U. S. Army, assumes command of the Department of the Missouri.

December 18, 1861

James H. Lane received an appointment as Brigadier General of Kansas Volunteers.

December 19, 1861

Union commander of Missouri, General Henry W. Halleck complains to Major General George B. McClellan the Jayhawking forces of Lane and Jennison have by their actions done more to flame the Rebel sentiment in the “. . . state than could have been accomplished by 20,000 of his own army.”

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