Thursday, August 22, 2013

Saturday, August 22, 1863

William has spent the week in Chillicothe--he returned home to night.
The guerrillas under the desperado Quantrill have burned Lawrence City in Kansas -- Burnside is marching on East Tennessee -- Rosecrans is also moving in the direction of Chattanooga --Seige of Charleston S. C. is progressing.  Federal Troops are marching on Little Rock, Ark. & Banks heads an expedition against Mobile.

Peggy's comments:

This  contemporary account of the desperado William C. Quantrill's raid on Lawrence, Kansas, was published in the September 5, 1863 issue of Harper's Weekly.

The Massacre at Lawrence, Kansas

THE city of Lawrence was, on the evening of August 20, 1863, one of the most thriving towns between the Missouri River and the Rocky Mountains. At daybreak on the next day it was a heap of ruins. A gang of guerrillas, 500 strong, under Quantrill, crossed the Missouri River on the evening of the 20th, and pushed forward to Lawrence, where they arrived just before daybreak. Guards were posted around the town so as to prevent all escape, and the work of pillage and murder at once commenced. The attack was wholly unexpected, and there was not the least show of resistance. The citizens were massacred by the light of their burning homes, and their bodies flung into wells and cisterns. In one case twelve men were driven into a building, where they were shot down, and the house burned over their bodies. The number of victims is stated at 180, including the Mayor and the principal citizens. Only one hotel was left standing, and this was spared because the guerrilla chief had been formerly entertained there free of expense. Two of the banks were plundered, and the third escaped because the marauders could not force the safe in time. The total loss of property is put down at two millions of dollars. No other such instance of wanton brutality has occurred during the American war. The names of Nena Sahib in India, Cut-Nose in Minnesota, and Quantrill in Kansas will go down in history together.

And more information about Quantrill posted on the current blog, Civil War Daily Gazette .

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