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Civil War Round Table of Arkansas

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Newsletter Archive - We have left these online because they contain valuable articles. For the most up-to-date Civil War Roundtable of Arkansas Newsletter please use the Newsletter button in the Menu. 


    Our 40th Year 
    Meets Fourth Tuesday, January-November/Founded March 1964 
    Fletcher Branch Library, H & Buchanan (East of University Ave.), 
    Little Rock 
    Program at 7 p.m. 
    Brian Brown, President  /  Charles O. Durnett, Editor, 
    Dues $15 Per Year VISITORS WELCOME! 





    By Jim Woodrick, Civil War Sites Historian,

    Mississippi Department of Archives and History

    Though not nearly as well known as his famous cavalry raid in April, 1863, Benjamin Grierson's "other" raid in the winter of 1864-1865, caused more destruction than Grierson's other forays into the interior of Mississippi. Moving down the Mobile & Ohio Railroad, Grierson's three brigades tore up tracks, burned bridges and supply depots, and seriously disrupted Confederate communications.

    During the two-week, 450 mile expedition, the Union raiders fought sharp engagements at Egypt Station and Franklin Church -- at the latter against an Arkansas regiment. The speaker will examine the results of the raid, the Confederate response to the expedition, and the expedition's relationship to and effect on the overall war effort.

    A native of Meridian, Mississippi, Jim Woodrick serves as Civil War Sites Historian with the Mississippi Department of Archives and History. In that capacity, he oversees the Mississippi Civil War Trails program and is involved in a number of studies, including a historical and archaeological study for the American Battlefield Protection Program on the Battle of Okolona, Mississippi.

     He also administers the State Historical Marker Program.  A lifelong student of the Civil War, Jim is actively involved in the Jackson Civil War Round Table, where he serves as editor of that organization's newsletter, and is a frequent speaker at Civil War conferences and seminars. A graduate of Millsaps College in Jackson, he is also a member of the Mississippi United Methodist Commission on Archives and History.



    State Senator Shane Broadway will make a special presentation, during the meeting, in Memory of Jerry Russell. Senator Broadway has served in the General Assembly since 1997, and served as the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

     To: Charles Durnette,  Secretary, 
    Civil War Roundtable of Arkansas      
    From:      Gaylord M. Northrop,  President
    Date:        23 February 2004
    Subject:   Resignation as President           

     1. It is with the utmost regret that I find my physical condition requires that I resign from my position as President of the Civil War Roundtable of Arkansas, effective 25 February 2004.

     2.   My hematologist/oncologist informed me recently that my myelodysplasia has progressed to acute leukemia.

     3.   My membership in the Civil War Roundtable of Arkansas has  been of great pleasure and pride to me. I have viewed it as an honor  and opportunity. As President in 2004, I had looked forward to interesting Programs, and new achievements to further better understanding of  the Civil War.

     4.   I want to express my pleasure in serving with you briefly as your President. And, I want to thank you for your faith and confidence in me, by electing  me to be your President for 2004.

     5.   Thank you for the opportunity to be your friend and colleague.

     With my warmest regards,       / signed /       

                                                                           Gaylord M. Northrop 

     With great regret, a nominating committee was appointed and met briefly after the meeting. The committee has asked Brian Brown to complete the term, serving as both president and treasurer. His name will be placed before the members at Thursday’s meeting. The Committee was Randy Baldwin, Charles Durnette, Don Hamilton, Brian Brown & Tom Ezell.




     A small portion of the collection of memorabilia from Jerry Russell’s personal Civil War collection will be available at the meeting for purchase. Alice Anne Russell is in the process of downsizing this enormous collection. A small portion of his vast book and video collection will be on display.

     Bring your checkbook.




     The family of Tom Beam will have a part of his Civil War collection available for purchase at the Robert C. Newton Camp, Sons of Confederate Veterans meeting. The SCV will meet, Thursday evening at 7:00 pm March 25TH, Fletcher Branch Library, H & Buchanan (East of University Ave.), Little Rock. (The same as the CWRT)

     The collection includes:

    Prints:   Steele's Retreat from Camden, First In Last Out, They'll Do To Tie To, Confederate Ram Arkansas (autographed copy is optional as there are several of each), Confederate General William "Dirty Neck Bill" Scurry (autographed copy is optional as I have several of each), My Dear Wife (mint dust jacket), Civil War Command and Strategy (mint dust jacket), Kurz & Allison Prints: Battle of Pea Ridge, Shiloh, Vicksburg, among others, First at Vicksburg by Hal Stone, Siege of Vicksburg L. Prang and Company in Boston and copyrighted in 1888, Main Street Little Rock Arkansas 1926 (hand signed and numbered), Rock Island Line (hand signed and numbered), Print of the Riverboat "The Arkansas" on the Arkansas River (hand signed and numbered),

    Miscellaneous: Bonds, Money, Bullets, Mini Balls (many Arkansas), Drum, Guns, Shackles, Swords (dug), Mini Ball molds, buttons, buckles, other books, statues, prints, slave documents, and many predrawings and working copies by artists as well as their final works.

    A reminder about your 2004 dues

     The dues are $15.00 for a family membership. If you have a question about your dues contact Brian. If you would like to pay, your dues contact:

     Brian Brown, Treasurer
    Civil War Roundtable of Arkansas P.O. Box 25501
    Little Rock, Ark. 72221

    You may wonder where your dues go. The main expenditures for the CWRT are two-fold the newsletter and speaker expenses. For those speakers that have to come some distance, we offer an honorarium or partial expenses for the trip. Our fee for the WebSite is piggybacked and only costs us the annual fee. Aristotle ISP donates the space to us.

     The main expenditure is always the newsletter. We send out about 100 each month to the speakers and, to dues paying members, etcetera. It costs right at $47 to have it printed and collated each month, and the stamps run another $37. For the first two months this year, the printing has been donated and the only thing we will have to pay is the postage.

     We have tried ways to cut the cost of the mailings as many members have noted. We’ve tried self-mailers but that does not seem to work so we will be going back to mailing in envelopes. During the years, we will be experimenting with other cost cutting. We hope eventually to get everything on the Web Page. Making that available to our ever-expanding membership.

     Actually, the Newsletter has been posted on the WebSite for over three years. You can sign up there to be notified when new information is posted. Currently, nearly 250 folks have signed up for the notifications.

     Try it:





    March 23, 2004 –

     Jim Woodrick, Jackson, Miss. CWRT, 

    April 27, 2004 – 


    May 25, 2004 

     Cal Collier, Towson, Md.

    Celebrating our 40TH Anniversary
    Of  the
    Civil War Roundtable of Arkansas

    June 22, 2004 – 


    July 27, 2004 – 

    Gaylord Northrop, Sherwood,
    Command & Control in Confederate Arkansas

    August 24, 2004 

     Supt. Ralph Jones, Fort Gibson, Okla.
    The Battle of Honey Springs. 

     September 28, 2004  


    October 26, 2004 – 


     November 23, 2004


     December, 2004 – 

     No meeting Scheduled in December


    2004 Central Kentucky

    Civil War Heritage Trail


    July 19-24, 2004

    Take a complete, week-long summer vacation, or just a day-long family outing in beautiful and historic central Kentucky. Six important Kentucky Civil War sites are cooperating to provide visitors and hometown folks with an extraordinary opportunity to tour the region in unprecedented style. On successive days during one week in the summer of 2004, these sites will greet visitors with the best they have to offer; expertly guided tours, hands-on activities, concerts, living history programs, and more.


    The War In The Capitol City

    Opening ceremony with artillery salutes; living history visits to a garrison encampment and an 1864 inn; tours of Fort Hill Park with two earthwork forts and a Morgan's Last Raid skirmish site; Old State Capitol; Ky. Military History Museum; evening Civil War concert in historic downtown by Saxton's Cornet Band. Special lodging & meal rates. 502-696-0607 or Noon-8 p.m.


    Hands-On Archaeology and Artillery Demonstrations

    Camp Nelson is the site of an important Union Army supply depot and enlistment center for African-American and White troops.  It was also a hospital and refugee camp for the families of enlisted African-American soldiers. The park includes five miles of interpretive trails, an interpretive center and a house museum, all in a pristine rural setting. Hands-on archaeology at the prison site; artillery demonstrations by the 12th U.S. Colored Heavy Artillery; and guided tours. Call 859-881-9126 for more information.   10 a.m.-5 p.m.


    Complete Confederate Victory

    Presentation on Battle of Richmond, Kentucky, by a noted authority on the details of this extraordinary fight; living history interaction with Union and Confederate soldiers; visit to an 1860s wayside tavern; guided tours of Richmond battlefield all the way from Big Hill to the Richmond Cemetery; 19th century music program.  Self-guided driving tours also available. Call 800-866-3705 for more information.  Activities begin at noon.


    The War In Kentucky Begins

    See where the Union held the Wilderness Road and prevented an invasion of the Bluegrass region. See the Confederate campsite, traces of the Wilderness Road, original trenches, and hospital rock. Enjoy a hayride tour, historical speaker, and living history camp with a chaplain, ladies' tea and cannon demonstration. Call 800-348-0095 or email for area lodging and meals.   10 a.m.-5 p.m.


    The Fog of War

    Battlefield tours beginning at 10 a.m. and continuing all day (easy to moderate walking conditions).  Self-guided driving tour (9 stops) including Mill Springs (allow 2 to 3 hours).  A guided immersion tour called “The Confederate Perspective”  starts at 10 a.m.  This tour will last  5-6 hours and cover 12 miles.   Includes crossing Lake Cumberland, lunch, and a visit to the Mill,  $35 per person donation.  Moderate to difficult walking conditions. All events begin at Zollicoffer Park.  Call 606-679-1859 before July 16 for reservations or email


    Kentucky's Largest Battle

    Experience the cost of war at Perryville, site of Kentucky's largest Civil War battle. Enjoy guided battlefield tours and an interactive experience at Merchants' Row, the town's preserved 19th century commercial district.  Living history events include a Civil War-era embalming presentation, cavalry, and civilian experiences as they relate to the aftermath of battle.  The site includes nearly 600 acres of battlefield land, a five-mile interpretive trail, museum, and period doctor's office and shops. For details contact or call 1-888-332-1862.  10 a.m.-6 p.m.





    Akridge, Scott A., and Emmett E. Powers, A Severe and Bloody Fight: The Battle of Whitney's Lane & Military Occupation of White County, Arkansas, May & June, 1862, White County Historical Museum, Searcy, AR, 1996.

    Allen, Desmond Walls, The Fourteenth Arkansas Confederate Infantry. Conway, AR: Arkansas Research).

    Anderson, Mabel W. Life of Genera! Stand Watie, the Only Indian Brigadier General of the Confederate Army and the Last General to Surrender. Pryor, OK: Mayes County Republican, 1915.

     Bailey, Anne J. “The Texas Cavalry’s Race To Reinforce Arkansas Post, January 1863.” East Texas Historical Journal, XXVIII (No. 1, 1989), 45-56.

    Bearss, Edwin C. “The Battle of Helena, July 4, 1863.” Arkansas Historical Quarterly, XX (Autumn 1961), 25 6-297.

    Bearss, Edwin C. “The Battle of Pea Ridge.” Arkansas Historical Quarterly, XX (Spring 1961) 74-94.

    Brown, Dee. "Wilson’s Creek.” Civil War Times Illustrated, XI (1972), 8-18.

    Christ, Mark K., editor, Rugged and Sublime - The Civil War in ArkansasFayetteville, AR: University of Arkansas Press, 1994.

    Christ, Mark K., Getting Used to Being Shot At: The Spence Family Civil War Letters. Fayetteville, AR: University of Arkansas Press, 2002.

    Ferguson, John L., editor. Arkansas and the Civil War. Little Rock: Pioneer Press, 1965. [Mostly a collection of original documents relating to Arkansas and the War.]

    Lancaster, Bob, “To Camden and Back: War as a Muddy Horror.” Arkansas Times, X (April 1984), 46-48, 64-72

    Moneyhon, Carl, “Disloyalty and Class Consciousness in Southwestern Arkansas, 1862-1865” Arkansas Historical Quarterly, LII (Autumn 1993), 223-243.

    Moneyhon, Carl, “The Impact of the Civil War In Arkansas: Mississippi River Plantation Counties,” Arkansas Historical Quarterly, LI (Summer 1992), 105-118.

    O’Donnell, William W. The Civil War Quadrennium. Little Rock: Civil War Roundtable of Arkansas, 1985. [Little Rock during the Civil War.]

    Pollan, Carolyn. “Fort Smith Under Union Military Rule, September 1, 1863-Fall, 1865.” Fort Smith Historical Society Journal, VI (April 1982), 2-33.

    Pollan, Carolyn, “‘The War’ and Fort Smith Militia in 1861.” Fort Smith Historical Society Journal, IV (September 1980), 2-11. [Contains diary of Private John M. Lucey and biography of Paul Krone, early Arkansas Photographer.]

    Roberts, Bobby L. “Thomas C. Hindman, Jr.: Secessionist and Confederate General.” Master’s thesis, University of Arkansas, 1972.

    Roberts, Bobby L., and Carl Moncyhon. Portraits of Conflict: A Photographic History of Arkansas in the Civil War. Fayetteville: University of Arkansas Press, 1987. [An important book with much more than photographs.]

    Woodruff, William E., With the Light Guns in ‘61- ‘65; Reminiscences of Eleven Arkansas, Missouri and Texas Light Batteries in the Civil War. Little Rock: Central Printing Co., 1903. Reprinted Little Rock: Eagle Press, 1987.

    Woods, James M. “Devotees and Dissenters: Arkansas in the Confederate Congress, 1861-1865.” Arkansas Historical Quarterly, XXXVIII (Autumn 1979), 227-247.

     POLITICAL POWER 1860-1865

     The population of Arkansas in 1860 was 435,450 and included 324,143 Caucasians and 111,259 African-Americans.  Both the Caucasian and African-American populations had approximately doubled each decade from 1840 (the first census after Arkansas became a state) to 1860.  As Arkansas attained statehood in 1836, sectional politics drove decisions on representation.  Representatives from the southern and eastern areas of the state prevailed in their positions, and the House and Senate districts positioned more political power in the southern and eastern counties of the state.  When the state convention considered secession in 1861, voting patterns reflected the sectional politics of the state.  Delegates favoring secession were generally from areas south and east of a northeast to southwest diagonal across the state.

     Starting in January of 1861, Arkansans had debated seceding from the Union.  On February 18 they voted to convene a state delegation to consider appropriate action on the secession issue.  The conventions first meeting was in the House chamber of the Old State House in Little Rock on March 4, and the proposal for secession was defeated

     On April 12, Confederate forces opened fired on the Federal garrison at Fort Sumter in Charleston harbor, South Carolina.  The Federal forces withdrew from the fort the following day.  In Arkansas, Governor Rector ordered a small state militia to Fort Smith to seize the Federal post there.  By April 23, the Federal garrison in Fort Smith had withdrawn.  On April 25, the state convention president called the secession delegation to reconvene.  On May 6, the delegation convened, voted for secession, and proceeded to organize the states volunteer military.

     That is about as short as it gets. Before the war Arkansas was about 19TH most prosperous state in the union after the war it crashed to the bottom of the list because they could not maintain the agricultural economic base.



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    Many thanks to Rob MacGregor for his presentation

    Jefferson Davis,

    Before & After the Civil War

    Don't forget, our 40th birthday coming soon.



    for Jim Woodrick





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