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Civil War Round Table of Arkansas

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Our 46th Year 

Meets Fourth Tuesday; January-November
Founded March 1964

Second Presbyterian Church

600 Pleasant Valley Drive

Little Rock 
Program at 7 p.m. 
Jan Sarna, President 

Rick Meadows, Editor / 
Dues $20 Per Year



Confederate Grizzlies: General Mosby M. Parsons

And his Confederate Missouri Division


Dr. Bill Gurley 

Dr. Bill Gurley will bring our program on Tuesday night. A long time member of our Civil War Roundtable, Dr. Gurley is professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences at The University of Arkansas Medical Sciences in Little Rock. With Cynthia Dehaven Pitcock, Dr. Gurley edited I acted From Principle: The Civil War Diary of Dr. William M. McPheeters, Confederate Surgeon in the Trans-Mississippi. His work was published by The University of Arkansas Press in 2002. He has also contributed chapters on Parsons in Confederate Generals of the Trans-Mississippi, Vol 1 and Vol 2 published by University of Tennessee Press in 2011 and 2012.

Dr. Gurley received his B.S. in Pharmacy in 1983 from The University of Tennessee, a B.S. in Chemistry from Tennessee Tech in 1980, and his PhD in Pharmaceutics from the University of Tennessee in 1990. He has authored more than 100 peer-reviewed publications and is serving as Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences.  

His talk Tuesday is titled: Confederate Grizzlies: Mosby M Parsons and his Confederate Missouri Division, which comes from a current book project.  

One of the best sources on Parsons is found in David C Hinze’s work, The Battle of Carthage, Border War in Southwest Missouri, July 5, 1861 which was published in 1997 by Savas Publishing Company in Campbell, CA. Hinze offers this biographical sketch. “Mosby Monroe Parsons, a Virginia native, had migrated to Cole County, Missouri at an early age.  A thriving law practice preceded the outbreak of war with Mexico, which prompted Parsons to join the 2st Missouri Mounted Infantry.  Elected captain of Company F, Parsons served with distinction during the conflict and was cited for gallantry at the little-known Battle of Sacramento on February 28, 1847.  His military record and return to the legal profession served as a springboard for a successful career in politics. Parsons served from 1853 through 1857 as Missouri’s Attorney General, and in the latter year took a seat as a democrat in the state senate.  The Virginian turned Missourian was an early and strong ally of Governor Jackson’s efforts to pull the state into the Confederate fold.” (PG 71-72)


Mosby Monroe Parsons

May 21, 1822 – August 15, 1865

Place of birth Charlottesville, Virginia

United States of America,
Allegiance Confederate States of America

Years of service 1846–48 (USA), 1861–65 (CSA)

Rank Brigadier General

Battles/wars Mexican-American War

  • Battle of El Brazito

  • Battle of Sacramento

  • American Civil War

  • Battle of Carthage (1861)

  • Battle of Wilson's Creek

  • Battle of Pea Ridge

  • Battle of Prairie Grove

  • Battle of Helena

  • Red River Campaign

  • Camden Expedition




















Hinze writes about the skirmish at Boonville and the engagement at Carthage which was fought more than 2 weeks before First Bull Run. Governor Jackson enlisted the assistance of Sterling Price and Parsons to meet the Federal threat of Nathaniel Lyon and Franz

Sigel. Carthage was a western frontier town founded in 1842. At Carthage, Parsons commanded the Sixth Division which consisted of 650 men.  

Hinze concludes this on Parsons after the battle of Carthage: “One of the better yet overlooked Confederate generals, Parsons, who continued to demonstrate great promise at Wilson’s Creek and Pea Ridge.  In the latter battle his brigade performed some of the finest and hardest fighting on that difficult field.  Parsons was commissioned into Confederate service in November 1862 as a brigadier general and spent most of 1862-1863 engaged in the Arkansas campaigns.  In 1864 he led with distinction a division in Louisiana during the Red River Campaign after he was sent to reinforce Richard Taylor’s small army.  After helping defeat Nathaniel Bank’s Federals, the ubiquitous Parsons marched north and participated in the repulse of Frederick Steele’s column in Arkansas.  Later that year he served with Sterling Price on the ill-fated Missouri Raid.  Like many others, Parsons traveled to Mexico after the war, where he was killed in fighting imperial forces at Camargo, Mexico on August 17, 1865.” (PG 218-219)


Brown Bag Lunch with Kelly Jones


The Old State House Museum welcomed Kelly Jones on August 6th as a lunch crowd gathered to hear her program on “Slavery and Law in Arkansas.” Jones is a PhD student with research on slavery in Arkansas. She discussed the unequal punishments between whites and slaves. In addition, dealing with Free Negroes was more complicated in Arkansas than in other southern states.  

Jones told several moving accounts concerning slaves. For example a slave named, Sophia, sold for $650 in Washington County but she kept going home to her children. She loved her children and did not want to be separated from them and was willing to be severely punished if caught.  

Jones briefly discussed the Slave Rebellion of 1862 in Pulaski County. Much more research needs to be made on slavery in Arkansas. During the question and answer session, Kelly was asked: “Where does religion play?”

 Civil War Bullets from Rick 

  • Mark Christ will present his program on The Battle of Arkansas Post at the Jacksonville Museum of Military History at 6:30 P.M. on August 26th.
  • Cannon dedication at Reed’s Bridge in Jacksonville at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, August 28. Re-enactment September 11-12. Battle at 2:00 p.m.
  • Visit for information about the Arkansas Civil War Sesquicentennial Commission
  • Welcome our new member – David Bash from Little Rock!


One of our members has asked our Roundtable to consider joining the Civil War Preservation Trust as a Color Bearer. “The CWPT exists to identify and preserve, for all time, the battlefields of our American Civil War. The Trust further believes that protecting our past is the surest way to ensure our future.” Since 1987 the CWPT has saved over 29,000 acres of hallowed ground. Individuals, corporations, foundations, and even Civil War Roundtables are called upon for financial support. In Arkansas the Trust is supporting preservation efforts at Prairie Grove, Devils Backbone, and Helena. With an annual donation of just $1000, the Civil War Roundtable of Arkansas, Inc. can join other Color Bearers across the country.  

Come Tuesday night to discuss the possibility of our support. This may be accomplished in many ways including:

  • Having our Roundtable match the annual contributions of our members who are also members of the Trust to reach the $1000 goal. For example, if we have 5 members who give $500 among them to the Trust, then our Roundtable will match their $500 with another $500 from our Roundtable. If our members give $750 among them to the Trust, then our Roundtable would give the Trust $250 to reach the $1000 level required to be a Color Bearer.
  • Before requesting any funding from our Roundtable, ask our members and friends to make a donation to the Trust and pool these funds with those of the members of our Roundtable who are also members of the Trust.
  • Employer Matching Contributions – Since may corporations have matching funds available for charity organizations, ask our members to make a contribution to the Trust and have their company match that amount.

Become a Color Bearer 

Benefits of becoming a Color Bearer include: 

  • Special invitations about 2 times a year for 2 or 3 of our Roundtable members to attend special battlefield tours (next month they will meet at Franklin - just pay for travel and lodging.).
  •  If any members of our Roundtable attend the CWPT’s Annual Conference, each person will receive a special half-day tour and admittance to the “Author’s Dinner”
  • Complimentary copy to all members of our Roundtable of the award winning magazine, “Hallowed Ground” published three times a year by the Trust.


Civil War Roundtable Speakers 2010

Tell and invite a friend to join us! 

  • Jan – Joellen Maack – “Civil War Flags at the Old State House Museum”

  • Feb – Dr. Michael Dougan  - “Gen N. Bart Pearce”

  • Mar –  William Stevens – “CSS Pontchartrain”

  • Apr –  Tom Ezell          @  the Ten Mile House – “David O. Dodd”

  • May – Mark Christ – “Battle of Arkansas Post”

  • June –  Evans Benton – “Forrest’s West Tennessee Raid & The Battle of Parkers’ Crossroads

  • July –  Brian Brown – “Fort Henry and Fort Donelson”

  • Aug – Dr. Bill Gurley - “Confederate Grizzlies: Mosby M. Parsons and his Confederate Missouri Division”

  • Sept – Greg Biggs – “How Johnny Got His Gun”

  • Oct – Dr. William Shea – Trans Mississippi Army

  • Nov – Drew Hodges – “Confederate General Bushrod Johnson”


Thanks to Brian Brown for an outstanding program last month on Fort Henry and Fort Donelson!

Hope to see you Tuesday night with Dr. Gurley and General Parsons!