War of the Rebellion: Serial 114 Page 0221 EARLY EVENTS IN MISSOURI, ETC.

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quiet should be re-established in North Missouri. Neither the condition of the people nor the experience of the past month can fairly justify a departure from the policy which already has greatly reduced the extent and character of the disturbances in North Missouri, yet it is hoped that this cordial assent to the suggestions and the warmly expressed opinions of the executive and many of the most prominent citizens of the State will be received by the people in the spirit in which it is accorded and that the hopes of peace and quiet which these gentlemen base upon it will not be disappointed. It is proper, however, to warn the people of North Missouri and of the entire military district over which the commanding general in North Missouri has control that any abuse of this leniency will be instantly followed by results far more severe and difficult to bear than any which are now objected to.

By order of General Poper:


Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.



Saint Louis, August 30, 1861. *

Circumstances in my judgment are of sufficient urgency to render it necessary that the commanding general of this department should assume the administrative powers of the State. Its disorganized condition, helplessness of civil authority, and the total insecurity of life and devastation of property by bands of murderers and marauders who infest nearly every county in the State and avail themselves of public misfortunes in the vicinity of a hostile force to gratify private and neighborhood vengeance and who find an enemy wherever they find plunder finally demand the severest measures to repress the daily increasing crimes and outrages which are driving off the inhabitants and ruining the State.

In this condition the public safety and success of our arms require unity of purpose without let or hindrance to the prompt administration of affairs. In order therefore to suppress disorders, maintain the public peace and give security to the persons and property of loyal citizens I do hereby extend and declare established martial law throughout the State of Missouri. The lines of the army occupation in this State are for the present declared to extend from Leavenworth by way of posts of Jefferson City, Rolla and Ironton to Cape Girardeau on the Mississippi River. All persons who shall be taken with arms in their hands within these lines shall be tried by court-martial and if found guilty will be shot. Real and personal property of those who shall take up arms against the United States or who shall be directly proven to have taken an active part with their enemies in the field is declared confiscated to public use and their slaves if any they have are hereby declared free men.

All persons who shall be proven to have destroyed after the publication of this order railroad tracks, bridges or telegraph lines shall suffer the extreme penalty of the law. All persons engaged in treasonable correspondence, in giving or procuring aid to the enemy, in


*See M. Jeff. Thompson's retaliatory proclamation, September 2, at p. 181.