Missouri's Confederate Capital in Marshall, Texas
Louis. St. Louis, then the principal Republican stronghold in the
state, and the counties surrounding it had been heavily settled by
immigrant Germans in the preceding years, and like their breth-
ren in Texas these new arrivals were almost unanimously anti-
slavery in conviction. They formed an important part of the "un-
conditional union" movement led by the extremely capable and
aggressive Frank P. Blair. Captain Nathaniel Lyon, a regular army
officer of unshakable anti-slavery convictions, had recently arrived
in the city and was actively working with Blair. Lyon had been
ordered to St. Louis with a company of regulars in January, 1861,
to reinforce the Arsenal and was firmly resolved to tolerate no
secession nonsense in his jurisdiction.
These two men were Governor Jackson's most formidable op-
ponents. Armed neutrality, state sovereignty outside the Union,
or any other similar condition were all unacceptable to them.
Unswerving adherence of Missouri to the United States was the
only acceptable condition. Friction between the followers of Gov-
ernor Jackson and those of Blair and Lyon steadily mounted.
Minute men began drilling throughout the state, bent on resist-
ing Federal authority. In some places, notably St. Louis, Repub-
lican marching clubs were formed. Governor Jackson, exercising
legitimate powers, ordered the state militia into training.
On April 13, 1861, the day Fort Sumter fell, President Lincoln
issued his call for troops, and Governor Jackson, answering for
Missouri, replied that the state would not furnish a single man
for such an "unholy crusade." Generally, the people of Missouri
supported their governor in this reply. About a week later state
troops seized the small Federal arsenal in Liberty, Missouri, and
shortly after, Captain Lyon, becoming increasingly uneasy about
the St. Louis Arsenal, quietly shipped the excess munitions in
St. Louis across the river to Alton, Illinois.
Early in May General D. M. Frost of the state militia established
Camp Jackson at St. Louis as ordered by the governor. Captain
Lyon, hearing that a shipment of cannon had been received at
Camp Jackson from the seized Federal arsenal at Baton Rouge,
Louisiana, determined to investigate that information. Accord-
ing to some accounts, he disguised himself as a veiled old woman
and drove through the camp to satisfy himself that the report was
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101196/. Accessed July 3, 2015.