The Civil War Led to Hardship Under Martial Law
Uncle hiked to Union City, Tennessee, to enlist in Confederate Army during the Civil War.
My ancestors lived in southeast Missouri during the
Civil War. When my great-great-uncle, Andrew Martin Bugg, hiked from Patterson, Missouri, to Union City, Tennessee,
to enlist in the Confederate Army on July 22, 1861, at the age of 21, the
family he left behind undoubtedly suffered nearly as much hardship as he. Martial
law was declared in Wayne County, Missouri, on August 3, less than two weeks
after Andrew arrived in Union City.
Shortly after hostilities started,
Missouri Gov. Claiborne Jackson immediately organized a Home Guard throughout
the state, supposedly to repel both Union and
Confederate forces. The North interpreted it as an act of war, and
reinforcements of Union troops chased the Home Guard into Arkansas. Residents of Wayne County
were under a constant struggle to survive throughout the war. The Union
soldiers would commit atrocities, then the former Home Guard would ride across
the border from Arkansas
and retaliate. Pillaging went on from both sides.
My great-great-grandparents lived
on a farm outside of Patterson, just about 3 miles from Fort Benton,
a Union fort. During a Union foray, my great-great-grandparents spotted the
Union soldiers coming and hid the silver and some large portraits in the oven.
It was a chilly day and the soldier
in charge insisted the stove be lit. Whether it was a clever ploy on the part
of the soldier for amusement as he watched their faces as the oven grew warmer,
or merely from the cold is not known. Finally, either sufficiently warmed, or
satisfied there was nothing in the oven, the soldiers departed, but not before
the portraits were badly charred.
This was minor compared to real
suffering that went on in Wayne
County. Men of Southern
extraction had to stay in hiding, livestock was taken, homes burned and
families exiled. Many men remaining at home joined the Enrolled Missouri
Militia just to stay alive and keep families from being persecuted.