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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 43nd Year 
Meets Fourth Tuesday, January-November

Founded March 1964 
Second Presbyterian Church
600 Pleasant Valley Drive

Little Rock 

Program at 7 p.m. 
VOL. XLIII, No. 8,

Ron Kelly, President/ Charles O. Durnett, Sec-Editor,  / 
Dues $15 Per Year

[Do not forget that we have moved]

Gen. Jo Shelby, CSA


Don Nall



The Union folks away up north were one time much afraid,
'Bout something coming from the South, they said it was a raid.
Now I will tell you what it was, if you will just keep cool—
It had long ears, and a long slick tail, and called Jo Shelby's Mule.

Shout Boys, make a noise, the Yankees are afraid

That something's up and hell's to pay when Shelby's on a raid.

Once this mule went on a spree, up close to Lexington,
And every time he gave a snort he made the Blue Coats run.
Coming back through “Old Saline” he got into a trap,
He seared Old Brown, kicked up his heels, and came back safe to Pap.

Once I went to see Old Abe and found him in a rage,
Because this mule had started north, and just then crossed “sage.
Indeed, his anger knew no bounds, says I, “Sir, pray keep cool.”
“I can't,” said he, “I've lost so much by Shelby's long tailed Mule.”

 Joseph Orville Shelby was born on December 12, 1830 in Lexington, Kentucky. The ShelbyKentucky's wealthiest and influential families. J. O. Shelby attended Transylvania University and was engaged in rope manufacturing until 1852 when he moved to Waverly, Missouri

In Waverly, he engaged in various enterprises including steam-boating on the Missouri and a hemp plantation. Being successful, Shelby became a member of the Missouri's social and political elite.

One of the Confederacy's most effective cavalry leaders, Joseph 0. Shelby served entirely in the Trans-Mississippi West. 

Early in the Civil War he entered the Missouri State Guard and his assignments included: captain, Shelby's Ranger Company, Missouri State Guard (spring 1861); colonel, 5th Missouri Cavalry (1862); commanding brigade, Marmaduke's Cavalry Division, Ist Corps, Trans-Mississippi Department (summer December 1862); commanding brigade, Marmaduke's Cavalry Division, District of Arkansas, Trans-Mississippi Department January-July 4, 1863 and late 1863-September 1864); brigadier general, CSA (December 15, 1863); commanding division, Army of Missouri, Trans-Mississippi Department (September 18-September 1864); and commanding lst (Missouri) Cavalry Brigade, lst (Missouri) Cavalry Division, Cavalry Corps, Trans-Mississippi Department (September 1864-May 26, 1865).

As a company commander he fought at Carthage, Wilson's Creek, and Pea Ridge before being sent back to Missouri to raise a regiment. As a colonel in charge of a brigade in John S. Marmaduke's mounted division, he fought at Prairie Grove and was wounded at Helena.




Bobby Roberts of the Central Arkansas Library System has proposed a permanent way for Jerry Russell to be remembered.
The Library’s new building will have a central atrium reaching four floors. Around the atrium on each floor will be a balustrade with dividers dropping down to the floor creating a barrier. The dividers will be 4 feet by 4 feet and made of acrylic to help provide a natural light effect. The proposal is to put a significant Arkansas picture in each panel, thus creating a history of the state in the library building.

The specific proposal is to have one panel with the caption “Contributed by The Civil War Round Table of Arkansas and the many friends of Jerry Russell”.  The encased picture will be one of Jerry’s favorite generals, - PATRICK RONAYNE CLEBURNE.  Currently the proposal is to make Jerry’s memorial the larger 4X4 and place it on the first level of the building.
Part of the Jerry Russell Memorial Fund will be used for this; however, additional Contributions are being solicited to cover all of the $5,000 cost.
Please consider making a contribution to the fund by sending a check to the
Jerry Russell Memorial Fund
P. O. Box 7281
Little Rock, AR 72217




*** Battle of Britton Lane

September 7,8 & 9 , 2007

Britton Lane Battlefield Association

4707 Steam Ferry Mill Road

Medon, Tennessee 38356

Jim Weaver  - President

Contact Us   --   (731) 989-7944

August 28, 2007 Don Nall
Jo  Shelby
September 24, 2007
October 23, 2007 - Mike Polston
General Allison Nelson
November 27, 2007

 We Who Study

      Must Also Strive To Save!

In Mobile, Alabama
old meets new
as reenactor
talks to Lee (?).


The Civil War Round Table of Arkansas and the Central Arkansas Civil War Heritage Trails sought to reprint the brochure featuring a driving tour of The Battle of Little Rock. For one reason or other revisions were put off repeatedly.

Dogging that revision over the years was Don Hamilton and his committee. Finally, in the last few months things have started coming together.

The brochure is in its final revision. In a matter of weeks if not days, the final product will be on the racks greeting visitors to Central Arkansas.

We need to give three giant cheers to Don Hamilton and his committee for this huge effort.

Another committee had been working with Bobby Roberts at CALS to pick a Yankee to be mounted in one of the dividers at the new facility. The committee met to review the available pictures; with the criteria being an Arkansan that fought in an Arkansas Union unit. Narrowing the search down to three, the committee selected an enlisted man William Villines, 1st Regiment, Arkansas Infantry.



Not much is known about Villines, but we do know about his unit.

Organized at Fayetteville, Ark., and mustered in March 25, 1863. Attached to District Southwest Missouri, Dept. Missouri to December 1863. 2nd Brigade, District of the Frontier, Dept. Missouri, to January, 1864. 2nd Brigade, District of the Frontier, 7th Army Crops, Dept. of Arkansas, to March, 1864. 1st Brigade, District of the Frontier, 7th Army Corps, to February 1865. 1st Brigade, 3rd Division, 7th Army Corps, to August 1865.

Duty at Fayetteville, AR., until April 1863. Cabell's attack on Fayetteville April 18. March to Springfield, Mo., April 25-May 4, and duty there until July. Newton County June 14. Moved to Cassville July 6. Joined Army of the Frontier at Fort Gibson, C. N., August 17. Pursuit of Cabell to Perryville August 22-26. Perryville August 26.

Devil's Back Bone, Back Bone Mountain, Fort Smith, September 1. Capture of Fort Smith September 1 and duty there until March 1864. Moffatt's Station, Franklin County, September 27, 1863. Mt. Ida November 13. Scout from Waldron to Mt. Ida, Caddo Gap and Dallas December 2-7. Steele's Expedition to Camden March 23-May 3. Prairie D'Ann April 9-13.

Moscow April 13. Camden April 15-18. Jenkins' Ferry, Saline River, April 30. March to Fort Smith May 1-16. Garrison duty at Fort Smith and escort and duty on the Frontier until August, 1865. Skirmish, Bates Township, November 2, and Newton County, November 15, 1864. Mustered out August 10, 1865.




I am pleased to announce that we have added a new temporary exhibit to the World War I Gallery.  It has been developed in conjunction with the Wilson History and Research Center, a local group owned by Robby Wilson.  Mr. Wilson has a great collection of military helmets and ultimately would like to develop his own museum around the collection.  Until that time, he was expressed a willingness to work with area museums to supplement their exhibitory.  We have been working with interims from the Wilson History and Research Center this summer to develop this small exhibit, which will be on display for the next 9-12 months. 

"Pride and the Fall: Mapping the Rise of Conflict in the 20th Century" was developed and paid for by the Wilson History and Research Center and traces the advent of the Central Powers in Europe in 1914 as well as the impact of the American entry into World War I in 1917.  The exhibit features some of the premier items from the center's collection, including a visor worn by Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany and a visor and sword owned by Prince Heinrich of Prussia.

 I encourage you to drop by the visit this newest exhibit at the museum.

Stephan McAteer



September 8, 2007
Illinois - Civil War Conference
12th Annual Fall Symposium
Four speakers will highlight the day on various topics of the war.  Speakers include:
Eric Jacobson,Carnton Mansion, Franklin, TN
The Battles of Spring Hill and Franklin
David Bridges, author/historian –
 Gen. George Custer Vs. Major James Breathed
Donald Gilmore, US Army Command & General Staff College
 Unbridled Violence on the Western Border
Dr. Lawrence Hewitt, author/historian –
 Lee's Finest Hour 
Fee is $45 for advance sales ($55 at the door) and includes lunch. There will be a book vendor available.
The symposium is held at Yoder Banquet Hall, Arthur, Illinois, near Decatur/Champaign area.
For more information, call (217)578-2262. 
Co-sponsored by the Decatur (IL) CWRT



Dover, TN Volunteers, park staff, and the Friends of the Fort Donelson Campaign will combine forces to provide a variety of Civil War programs during the Labor Day weekend.
The 50th Tennessee Infantry (CSA) will provide musket firing demonstrations on Saturday, September 1, 2007 at 1 pm and 2 pm near the fort entrance (Park Tour Stop #2).  The public is encouraged to visit their Civil War camp, Saturday,

10 am4 pm, and Sunday, September 2, from 10 am 2 pm.

Park Ranger programs will be held Saturday and Sunday, 11 am and 2 pm, at the River Batteries (Park Tour Stop #3).

The Friends of the Fort Donelson Campaign will also conduct programs at various battlefield locations on Saturday, Sept. 1, 2007 (this day only):

10 am - "The Day of Iron Valentines: The Ironclads Versus the River Batteries" (Park Tour Stop #3)

10:45 am - "McClernand Attacks Maney’s Battery"

11:30 am Buckner’s Breakout
2:45 pm - "McArthur's Brigade Defends Dudley's Hill"

3:30 pm - "They Cannot Be Strong Everywhere - Smith’s Attack" (Park Tour Stop #5)

4:15 pm - "Grant and Buckner at the Dover Hotel" (Surrender House Tour Stop #10)

For directions to any of these programs, ask a park ranger at the visitor center.  Programs are subject to changes or cancellations due to inclement weather.  For more information, contact the park staff at 931-232-5706.  We hope to see you here on Labor Day weekend.


Wartime Waltzing


Come Dance the Day Away at the Museum of the Confederacy
Richmond, VA: The Museum of the Confederacy and the Virginia Homespun Dance Ensemble will present a special living history program on Saturday, September 22 from 12:30 until 4:30 p.m. in the Museum lobby.
During the 1860’s a ball was one way to forget the trials of war and socialize with friends and neighbors! Almost everyone—young and old, rich and poor, northern and southern—enjoyed music and dancing. Participants of the living history program will enjoy demonstrations of 19th century dances, listen to talks on specific dances and etiquette, and even have the chance to participate!
So bring your dancing shoes and join us for the fun! Friends and members of the 12th Virginia Infantry, Company B, Longstreet's Corps will provide the Civil War dance demonstrations.
The cost of the program is free with admission to the museum.
To find out more contact Linda Lipscomb at (804) 649-1861 x.32, or visit our website 


56th Annual Clothesline Fair Information at

Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park

Attached is an update list of the events at Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park.  To find out more about the park visit our web site.

If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact the Battlefield Park.

October 27, 2007 - 7 pm - 10:30 pm
Haunted Battlefield Tour

Tour groups will be guided in front of the historic Borden House along part of the park's walking trail and into the valley where the heaviest fighting occurred during the Battle of Prairie Grove.  Chances are good that there will be a few surprises along the way.

Tours depart every 20 to 30 minutes.  The last tour will conclude around 10 p.m. Parking is available at the east entrance of the Borden House. 

Admission: Free.  Meet at the historic Borden House.  Passes will be required for specific tour departure times.  Passes are available the day of tours. 


From CWRT of Arkansas WebSite

At Shallow Ford (also called Shoal Ford) the Federal cavalry gained the west side of Bayou Meto on the morning of September 6, then pushed southwest toward Bearskin Lake and Ashley’s Mills and the waiting Confederates. The road to Shallow Ford no longer exists. The main body of the Union Army and its supply wagons crossed Bayou Meto on Eagles Bridge, downstream from the Ford. At about the same time Union forces were crossing Bayou Meto.

This road is the original route taken by Steele and Davidson, virtually unopposed to Ashley’s Mills, Stop 3. Approximately a quarter-mile north of Stop No. 3 is the Ashley’s Mills site where encamped Confederate cavalry under Col. Robert C. Newton was attacked on the morning of September 7 by Steele’s advance cavalry. Newton’s command was driven back toward the river, and fighting was continuous between the opposing forces on September 8 and 9. Opposite Ashley’s Mills on Walker’s Corner Road is the Chester Ashley house.


for Jo Shelby



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