August 10, 1861.
August 10, 1861.
1 The Confederates called this the Battle of Oak Hill.
2 The example of Lyon in the campaign, which for him ended at Springfield, inspired all of his followers, with the most soldierly qualities, and they were eminently displayed afterward. From his little army a large number of commanders emanated, and were conspicuous, especially in the West. Two years afterward, at writer in the Detroit Tribune said: “There was present at Wilson's Creek the usual complement of officers for a force of five thousand men. From them have been made six major-generals, and thirteen brigadiers; colonels, lieutenant-colonels, and majors by the score have sprung from those who were then either line or non-commissioned officers. From one company of the First Iowa Infantry thirty-seven commissioned officers are now in the service. Similarly, one company of the First Missouri has contributed thirty-two. It is a curious fact, that, of the officers who survived the battle of Wilson's Creek, not one has been killed in battle, and only one has died from disease. In every battle for the Union the heroes of this terrible contest are found, and nowhere. have they disgraced their old record. ‘ Is it not worth ten years of life to be able to say, I was in the campaigns with Lyon?’ ”A poet of the day, apostrophizing the Spirit of Lyon as a terror to the conspirators, wrote:
For wheresoe'er thy comrades stand
To face the traitors, as of yore,
Thy prescient spirit shall command,
And lead the charge once more.
3 See reports of Major Sturgis, August 20th, 1861; of Colonel Sigel, August 18th, 1861, and of the subordinate officers of Lyon's army; also, reports of Generals Price and McCulloch and their subordinate officers. The National loss was reported at 223 killed, 721 wounded, and 292 missing. McCulloch reported the Confederate loss at 265 killed, 800 wounded, and 80 missing. At the same time, he reported the National loss to be over 2,000. He had previously said to a National officer, who was with a party at his quarters, under a flag of truce, “Your loss was very great, but ours was four times yours.” See Report of the Committee on the Conduct of the War.General Price, in his report (August 12th, 1861), says the loss of his command was nearly 700, or nearly one-fifth of his entire force.
4 Lyon's body was placed in an ambulance to be moved from the field, but in the hurry of departure it was left. From Springfield, a surgeon with attendants was sent back for it, and General Price sent it to the town in his own wagon. In the confusion of abandoning Springfield, the next morning, it was again left behind, when, after being carefully prepared for burial by two members of Brigadier-General Clark's staff, it was delivered to the care of Mrs. Phelps (wife of J. S. Phelps, a former member of Congress from Missouri, and a stanch Union man), who caused it to be buried. A few days afterward it was disinterred and sent to St. Louis, and from there it was conveyed to its final resting-place in a churchyard at East Hartford, in Connecticut.
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