Ewing Issues Order No. 11

Tuesday, August 25, 1863

George Caleb Bingham's famous painting, "Order No. 11," depicting what he viewed as Thomas E. Ewing's unfair treatment of Missouri citizens. Courtesy of the State Historical Society of Missouri - Columbia.

Quantrill’s Raid on Lawrence sparks a furor among Kansans, many of whom blame General Thomas Ewing Jr. for allowing the town to remain so vulnerable. To remove the bushwhacker's base of support, and to prevent angry Kansans from leading a similar raid into Missouri, Ewing issues General Order No. 11, which calls for the forced evacuation of all citizens outside of urban areas and Union bases in Jackson, Cass, Bates, and northern Vernon Counties, provided they cannot prove their loyalty to the Union. Thousands of refugees--Unionists and Southern sympathizers alike--soon flee or are forced from their homes by Union troops. As homes, farms, and infrastructure are looted and burned by Union men and guerillas, the region soon becomes known as the “Burnt District.”


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