William Clarke Quantrill

William C. Quantrill was one of the most well known of The Missouri Partisan Rangers. And some of his raids were the most daring and recorded of the war. Although many times his manuevers were intentionally misplayed by the Federal media, his legend in Missouri is one of greatness and honor.

William Clarke Quantrill, a school teacher from Canal Dover Ohio, came to Kansas in 1857 to farm. He later joined a regiment of Missouri Confederate troops just before the Civil War.

Dissatisfied with a lack of aggressiveness after the battle of Lexington, Missouri, in September 1861, Quantrill left the army to organize his group of Partisan Rangers.

His rides and missions are legendary. Most famous was the "Pay Back" at Lawrence, Kansas on Aug. 21, 1863. Here he led somewhere between 300 - 400 Missouri Partisan men to avenge the dastardly killing of many of his men's female relatives in the collpase of a makeshift jail in Kansas City, Missouri.

The collapse of the hotel, hastily (and sabotaged by Federals) turned jail, occured a scant week earlier on August 14, 1863. This was facilitated by the weakening of support beams and structure by the Federal of the old 3 story jail. Premeditated murder of women and children, to be certain.

In the end, William Clarke Quantrill was shot and later died in 1865.

Captain Quantrill was trapped in barn on the James H. Wakefield farm, about one mile from Smiley, Kentucky by Edward Terrell and his cavalry detachment of hired assassins on May 10, 1865.

While attempting to escape, he was struck by two Spencer balls, one in the hand, the other paralyzing him from the waist down.

Captain Quantrill was then transferred to a Federal military hospital in Louisville, then to a Catholic Hospital in Louisville. After almost a month of fighting for his life, Captain Quantrill died at the Catholic Hospital in Louisville at 4pm, June 6, 1865.

He was buried in the old Portland Catholic Cemetery at Louisville. In 1887, his mother had his bones brought back to Ohio. The man she paid to remove the body stole some of the skeleton, and years later, parts of it showed up in the hands of a Kansas collector.

Eventually, these stolen parts were moved to the Old Confederate Veteran's Home & Cemetery at Higginsville, MO.

On October 24, 1992, William C. Quantrill was re-interred in the Old Confederate Veteran's Home Cemetery with full Confederate honors due him by the Missouri Division of the Sons Of Confederate Veteran's.

True Missourians and patriots will never forget your courage and honor.

God bless you Captain Quantrill. Rest in peace...

This is the actual wax reconstruction of the head of Captain William Clarke Quantrill, CSA. Captain Quantrill's reconstructed wax head is stored in a refrigerator in the historical museum of Captain Quantrill's hometown of Dover, Ohio.

Other Faces Of Quantrill From History (Left To Right)

  1. Composite With Confederate Uniform.
  2. Purportedly From An Early Life Image.
  3. Composite With Confederate Uniform.

Fourth Street Cemetery, Dover, Ohio
Body minus arm, shinbone, ribs and spine.

Confederate Cemetery, Higginsville, Missouri
Arm, shinbone, ribs and spine.


Copyright © 1995 - Present
MCT Internet Service
"Your Best Bet On The Internet"