This revised edition of the 1993 book is a lively telling of the Civil War in the Ozarks, which includes areas in southwest Missouri, northwest Arkansas, northeast Oklahoma, and a small portion of southeast Kansas. Steele and Cottrell devote a chapter a piece to each year of the Civil War and a chapter about events after the Civil War, involving some notable people from the Ozarks like Jesse James and his gang of outlaws.
In the first few years of the Civil War, the Ozarks saw a lot of action - major battles like the Battles of Wilsonís Creek In southwest Missouri (Aug. 10, 1861); of Pea Ridge in northwest Arkansas (March 7-8, 1862); Prairie Grove, also in northwest Arkansas (Dec. 7, 1862); and several battles that occurred in and around Carthage in southwest Missouri. Many people in this area did not support secession, especially in northwest Arkansas. Unionists, though, suffered at the hands of both sides.
Civil War in the Ozarks flows very well; neither too dry nor too academic, general readers will enjoy it. It includes a bibliography, and an index of battles in the Ozarks (with dates and pages to find the story about each). Illustrations are mostly black-and-white photos of reenactments with some photos and illustrations from the time period. This book is highly recommended to those interested in the Civil War in the Ozarks. There are few books on this topic.
Phillip W. Steele was the author of many books on the Ozarks, including Ozark Tales and Superstitions (1983), Outlaws and Gunfighters of the Old West (1991), The Last Cherokee Warriors (1978), and others. Steve Cottrell is the author of Civil War in the Indian Territory (1995), Civil War in Texas and New Mexico Territory (1998), and Civil War in Tennessee (2001).