Battle of Lexington State Historic Site Visitor Center
The Battle of Lexington State Historic Site is located in Lexington, Missouri about an hour east of Kansas City, Missouri. Of the few Civil War battlefields never under cultivation, the entrenchments from the Civil War are still visible. There is a self-guided walking tour of the battlefield. The visitor center has an exhibit hall with artifacts from the Civil War.
Directions: The Visitor Center [ Waypoint = N39 11.392 W93 52.801 ] is located at 1101 Delaware Street, Lexington Missouri 64067.
From I-70: Take exit 49 onto Hwy. 13 north (towards Higginsville), remaining on it for 19 miles into Lexington. Travel through Lexington to the intersection with Main Street. Continue north, straight on John Shea Dr., then left/west onto Delaware St. until reaching the historic site entrance.
Description: You'll want to start at the Battle of Lexington State Historic Site Visitor Center. There is a handout that includes a short walking tour. You can purchase tickets to take a guided tour of the Anderson House that is well worth the nominal price. There is also a short (approximately 25 minutes) video that provides a good overview of the battle. Follow the video by spending some time in the Visitor Center's museum that contains numerous artifacts from the period and the battlefield.
Missouri State Guard Monument: The Battle of Lexington
Before entering the Visitor Center, take a moment to look at the Missouri State Guard Historical Marker [ Waypoint = N39 11.404 W93 52.823 ] is located near the entrance to the Battle of Lexington State Historic Site Visitor Center at 1101 Delaware Street, Lexington Missouri 64067. This is a monument to the Missouri State Guard erected in 2000 by the Missouri Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. Under the command of Major General Sterling Price, the Missouri State Guard fought on the southern side in the Battle of Lexington.
East side inscription:
"Following victories in Southwestern Missouri, Maj. Gen. Sterling Price and 10,000 men of the Missouri State Guard marched north with the objective of breaking the Federal line along the Missouri River. On Sept. 12, 1861 the Guard engaged and drove a Federal force near Warrensburg into the fortifications at Lexington. The 3,600 man garrison led by Col. James A. Mulligan, was invested that day by the Guard and the Siege of Lexington commenced. Price was joined by 8,000 volunteers from Northern Missouri, and on the 18th stormed the outer defenses and severed the fort's access to water. On the 19th the Guard deployed hemp bales as a breastwork and on the 20th rolled the bales towards the Federal line. Faced with no means of resistance, Mulligan surrendered his command, arms and equipment. The Guard recaptured the State Seal and archives, and returned to the local bank over $900,000 taken by the Federal troops. This was the most complete victory for the South in 1861."
West side inscription:
"This monument is respectfully dedicated to the men of the Missouri State Guard, the legally established militia of the State, who first took up arms in 1861, and, marching and fighting under the blue battle flag of their beloved Missouri, did their whole duty as God gave them light to see that duty, and sacrificed everything but honor, in the defense of their State's sovereignty and the cause of constitutional rights."