Peaking Into Pea Ridge: A First Look Into the Civil War

Dear Henry,

I've officially seen my first Civil War Battlefield.

The Battle of Pea Ridge was a Civil war battle on March 6-8, 1862, in Northwestern Arkansas.

After Confederate troops were pushed out of Missouri by Union General Samuel Curtis, under Major General Earl Van Dorn, the Confederate troops attempted a counter-offensive here, along a ridge near Sugar Creek.

The battle is also known as the Battle of Elkhorn Tavern because the bulk of the fighting took place on the grounds of the area pub. There is a reproduction of the tavern at the park (the original was destroyed during the fight).

The battle ended in the Union's favor. With the Confederate army leaving the area. This action killed 203 Union soldiers and wounded 980, with 200 soldiers missing. It is estimated that the Confederate soldiers had around 2,000 killed or injured, although no one is really sure.

I must admit I don't know much about the Civil War and need to do more research. But, I am absolutely flabbergasted (still) by the fact that it happened at all, that slavery persisted as long as it did, and that we couldn't, as a country, figure it out. 

I believe that Ernest Hemingway said it best when he said, "Never think that war, no matter how necessary, nor how justified, is not a crime."  This is doubly true regarding a war that tore a country apart.

Because I spent my life in the West, I was never really confronted with the thought of it, but now that I'm in the South, it's everywhere. I think this part of American history will be the hardest to get used to.

I will let you know what I come up with.

xoxo a.d.