Mine Creek Battlefield

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The Mine Creek Battlefield State Historic Site is located about one half mile west of US Highway 69 on State Highway 52. The Visitor Center has a number of interpretive displays explaining Price's Missouri Expedition. This is the site of the only battle fought in the state of Kansas during the American Civil War.

Inside the Mine Creek Battlefield visitor center you'll see Civil War-era uniforms, learn about the eyewitnesses to the battle, and see weapons from the battle. The best part of the site is the interpretive walking trail out in the middle of the battlefield. The 1.6 mile Prairie Loop passes through the area of the battlefield north of Mine Creek. The 1.2 mile Timber Loop traverses the area south of Mine Creek. Plan on spending two to three hours here, particularly if you take the walking tour of the battlefield.

Mine Creek Battlefield State Historic Site Visitor Center

 Mine Creek Battlefield State Historic Site Visitor Center

After getting his wagons safely across the Marais des Cygnes River 10 miles north of here, Maj. Gen. Sterling Price was at the head of the column and ordered Brig. Gen. Jo Shelby to hurry south with his division to capture Fort Scott, Kansas.

Once again the Confederate wagons were strung out for many miles along the Military Road. Price left the divisions of Maj. Gen. John S. Marmaduke and Maj. Gen. James F. Fagan in charge of protecting the wagon train. Marmaduke was north of Mine Creek dealing with a difficult situation there.

Mine Creek was a small stream but the ford along the Fort Scott road was difficult and dangerous. Both banks were steep (10 to 25 feet) and treacherous. The ford had a rocky bottom but the far side bank was steep and had become slippery after most of Price's wagon train had already gotten across.

It was late in the morning on October 25 and Marmaduke found the Mine Creek crossing blocked. Marmaduke’s original plan was to set up his rear guard defense south of Mine Creek. Heavy rains had turned the creek into a raging torrent and there were still more than 100 wagons still waiting to cross the creek. But now Marmaduke knew he needed to hold off the advancing Federals from the north bank until the remaining wagons could get across the creek. He send word back to get support from Fagan's division.

The situation was about to get worse as Federal cavalry suddenly appeared over the ridge to the north. Marmaduke had to protect the wagon train and ordered his men to deploy in line of battle on the north side of Mine Creek.

There were more than 6,000 Confederate cavalrymen formed in line of battle just north of Mine Creek. Facing them about 1,000 yards to the north were about 2,500 Federal cavalrymen from the brigades of Col. John F. Philips and Lt. Col. Frederick W. Benteen.

Looking to North where Federal Cavalry Appeared

Looking to North where Federal Cavalry Appeared

Looking South toward Mine Creek and Confederate Line of Battle 

Looking South toward Mine Creek and Confederate Line of Battle 

Take the Self-Guided Walking Tour of the Mine Creek Battlefield

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Positions Along the Fort Scott Road Button

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Charging Federals Hit Confederate Line Button

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Main Ford Over Mine Creek Button

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Marmaduke and Cabell Captured Button

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The next tour stop is about an 11 mile drive down US Highway 69.

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