he Confederate Battle Flag has thirteen stars, but there were only eleven Confederate States. The extra stars represent Missouri and Kentucky, who formed Confederate governments that attempted to secede but did not succeed. Missouri was held in the Union by the quick and violent actions of the German immigrant community of St. Louis. Pro-Southern Missourians, of whom there were multiple thousands, banded together and followed Generals Sterling Price and Benjamin McCullough against a U.S. Army, led by General Nathaniel Lyon, who set out to defeat the 12,000 Missouri and Arkansas Confederates or drive them from the state.

The two forces met in southwest Missouri at Wilson’s Creek, the second major battle of the Civil War, on August 10, 1861. The pro-Southern forces outnumbered the Union more than two to one, but the impetuous and overconfident Lyon determined to attack anyway. A fierce contest ensued in which the two armies—mostly ununiformed and with but rudimentary training—inflicted more than twelve hundred casualties on each other, killing General Lyon in the process. The Union forces retreated and the exultant pro-Southern forces followed them to the capital at Springfield.

In October, a formal Confederate government was organized and the State Guard commissioned as official Confederate regiments. Under new commanders, the Union forces in Missouri banded together and defeated Price’s Missourians, driving them from the state south into Arkansas, thus instigating a guerrilla war that would characterize most of the violence over the next three years. Price would return in future years but never win again, nor outnumber his enemies.

Most of the 1700+ acre battlefield has been preserved in its original condition and is well interpreted with signage and hiking trails. The Battle of Wilson’s Creek could have secured Missouri’s place in the Confederacy, but quick reaction by Federal leaders and lack of provisions and equipment prevented further major successes for the Confederate cause.

Location within Missouri

Maj Gen. Sterling Price

Brig. Gen. Ben McCulloch

Brig. Gen. Nicholas Pearce

Brig. Gen. Nathaniel Lyon

Col. Franz Sigel

Maj. Samuel Sturgis

Tickets – Special Landmark Events 10th Anniversary Price – $10 per person!

This is a car tour so you provide your own transportation, giving you the flexibility to come and go as you please.

Wednesday, May 15, 2024  

Teach Them Diligently
Homeschool Conference after the Tour!

May 16-20 – Branson, MO
Great Speakers / Great Resources / Great Fellowship
Register for the TTD Conference here and save $20 on Family Registration with code Landmark24.

3 Brand New Messages by Dr. Bill Potter

  • George Orwell vs. Aldous Huxley: Which One Rightly Predicted the Future, or Neither?
  • Reel History: How Accurate Are Hollywood Civil War Films?
  • 19th Century Intellectuals Who Shaped 20th and 21st Century Ideologies and Morals: Karl Marx, Charles Darwin, and Friedrich Nietzsche

Stop by our booth, #234, in the exhibit hall. We would love to say hello and give you a free $50 gift certificate! (Separate registration required)

Upcoming Events

Northumbria Tour
July 8-17, 2024

Grand Canyon Adventure
August 28 – September 2, 2024