The Civil War in Missouri

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The Battle of Carthage, Missouri

From Harper's Weekly, 1861
MHM Photographs and Prints

Colonel Franz Sigel’s mostly German, Union soldiers were tasked with intercepting Missouri State Guard troops commanded by Governor Jackson as they moved toward southwest Missouri. Sigel hoped to crush Jackson’s force, but his inept decisions put him into a fighting retreat for nine miles into the town of Carthage. Fighting continued in the streets until nightfall ended the battle, giving the pro-Confederate forces in Missouri their first victory and spurring recruitment.