Looking for more from Sean McLachlan? He also hangs out on the Midlist Writer blog, where he talks about writing, adventure travel, caving, and everything else he gets up to. He also reproduces all the posts from Civil War Horror, so drop on by!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Welcome to Civil War Horror!

Welcome to Civil War Horror, a new blog by yours truly, Sean McLachlan. I’m a former archaeologist turned history and travel writer with a deep interest in the American Civil War, especially the war west of the Mississippi River. The so-called Trans-Mississippi Theater is understudied, yet fascinating. After the fall of Vicksburg on 4 July 1863, the Confederate West was cut off from the rest of the new nation and the conflict there became essentially a separate Civil War.

It had been so for some time. Seven years before the 1861 attack on Fort Sumter, the event most historians use to mark the start of the Civil War, Missouri and Kansas engaged in a bitter border war over whether the Kansas Territory would become a slave or free state. Abolitionist Kansas Jayhawkers raided Missouri, freeing slaves and killing slaveowners. Proslavery Missouri bushwhackers rode into Missouri, attacking abolitionists and fixing territorial elections.

After the surrender of the main Confederate armies in the East in 1865, rebels in the Trans-Miss fought on for a few months, and the bitter war’s legacy still played a part in conflicts such as the Gunfight at the OK Corral in 1881 and the Baldknobbers feud in the Ozarks in the 1880s.

This blog will cover all aspects of the Civil War while focusing on the Trans-Mississippi in general and Missouri in particular. Guest bloggers are welcome, so drop me a line if you have any photos, anecdotes, or interesting bits of information you’d like to share with a wider audience.

Why “Civil War horror”? Because this blog is also dedicated to my new series of horror/paranormal novels set in Missouri and the Trans-Mississippi. The first in the series, A Fine Likeness, was a finalist in a contest for new novelists and will be published via Kindle Direct Publishing, Smashwords, and Createspace in mid-September. More on that tomorrow!

[Image of Battle of Boonville, MO, courtesy Wikimedia Commons]

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