feed

Civil War Guidebook Review: “A Tour Guide to Missouri’s Civil War”

Share

A Tour Guide to Missouris Civil War

I was very pleased to receive a review copy of Gregory H. Wolk’s new book, A Tour Guide to Missouri’s Civil War: Friend and Foe Alike. This is a book that can be enjoyed by Civil War enthusiasts anywhere. Wolk provides a well crafted overview of the history that led up to the war and why that history was particularly volatile in Missouri and along its borders. Stuart Symington, Jr.’s fine “Foreward” sets the scene for Wolk’s exploration of why Missouri’s Civil War experience lasted longer and was arguably uglier than that of any other state. You may be surprised to learn, for example, that Missouri saw more Civil War battles or engagements than any state except Virginia and Tennessee. In fact, “almost half of the battles fought in 1861 occurred in Missouri.”

Wolk provides a good balance between narrative history, illustrations, maps, and photographs. Over 230 historic sites are described.

For those who want to get out and see the important sites and battlefields of the war in Missouri, Wolk provides five driving tours that include

  • St. Louis and the Southeast,
  • North Central,
  • South Central,
  • the Kansas City Region, and
  • Southwest Missouri.

He’s designed the tours as “Loop’s” that each take about two days to complete. Within each loop there are at least thirty heritage sites. Even if you don’t plan to take all of the driving tours, the book’s descriptions provide an excellent overview of the history of each region during the war era.

One of the book’s many strong points is its profiles of the fascinating individuals involved in the conflict. Readers are introduced, for example, to Lt. Colonel Frisby Henderson McCullough, the most prominent of fifteen southern men executed after the Battle of Kirksville for parole violations. Tour Stop 85 marks the “Kirksville Massacre Site” where the executions by firing squad took place on 7 August 1862 by the order of Col. John McNeil.

Frisby McCullough

Lt. Colonel Frisby McCullough

Wolk’s website and blog provide a gathering place for reference, discussion, and feedback. Visit friendandfoe.org to gain additional historical insights or to correspond with the author.

About the author: Gregory H. Wolk is a graduate of New York University School of Law and practices law in St. Louis. He is President of Missouri’s Civil War Heritage Foundation, Inc., who’s wonderful website I reviewed here.

HIGHLY RECOMMEND

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

2 thoughts on “Civil War Guidebook Review: “A Tour Guide to Missouri’s Civil War”

  1. I would like to bring to your attention what I believe is a unique book and an unknown but very moving true story that may be of interest for folks with Civil War ancestors– Hiram’s Honor: Reliving Private Terman’s Civil War, ISBN 978-0615-27812-4. Much of the story takes place at Andersonville. More information is available at http://hiramshonor.blogspot.com.

    A recent comment from a Pennsylvania reviewer:

    “Max R. Terman has masterfully crafted an engrossing novel that is difficult to set down. Once you begin reading, you are transported back nearly 150 years to the time of division, heartache, and chaos that became known as the American Civil War. His ancestor’s story comes to life in a fascinating new work that is certain to become a classic among historical novels…” Civil War author and historian from York, Pa.

    For the complete review, see http://scottmingus.wordpress.com/2010/03/12/book-review-hiram/