"A History of Southern Missouri and Northern Arkansas"

"A History of Southern Missouri and Northern Arkansas"

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Originally published in 1907 and now reprinted, A History of Southern Missouri and Northern Arkansas: Being an Account of the Early Settlements, the Civil War, the Ku-Klux, and Times of Peace (The Civil War in the West) is the only account published by a Union guerrilla in the border region of the central Ozarks, where political and civil violence lasted from the Civil War well into the 1880s. There were probably many people who wanted to shoot Billy Monks. He was a Union patriot and skilled guerrilla fighter to some, but others called him a bushwhacker, a murderer, and a thief. His was a very personal combat: he commanded, rallied, arrested, killed, quarreled with, and sued people he knew. His life provides a striking example of the cliché that the war did not end in 1865, but continued fiercely on several fronts for another decade as partisan factions settled old scores and battled for local political control. This memoir was Monks' last salvo at his old foes, by turns self-defense and an uncompromising affirmation of the Radical Union cause in the Ozarks. The editors include a new biographical sketch of the author, fill in gaps in his narrative, identify all the people and places to which he refers, and offer a detailed index. Monks himself illustrated the volume with staged photographs of key events re-created by aged comrades who appear to have been just barely able to hoist the muskets they hold as props.