Battle of Dry Wood Creek

Site of the Battle of Dry Wood Creek, southeast of Deerfield, Missouri along the Big Dry Wood Creek. Courtesy of the Library of Congress.

Notable Events:

  • Battle of Dry Wood Creek (September 2, 1861)

Fresh off a victory at Wilson's Creek, the Missouri State Guard under command of Major General Sterling "Pap" Price advanced toward Fort Scott, in southeastern Kansas. Colonel James H. Lane, in command of a jayhawker brigade of volunteers, confronted Price in the Battle of Dry Wood Creek, 12 miles east of the fort. Heavily outnumbered in the two-hour battle, Lane was forced to abandon his mules and withdraw to Fort Scott and then to Kansas City. Rather than capture Fort Scott, the Missouri State Guard switched course to attack Union forces at Lexington, Missouri. The skirmish is sometimes called the "Battle of the Mules" to commemorate Lane's loss.