Water Supply Stopped Skirmishes Between Union Army and Confederate

Union Army, Confederate Army call a truce to skirmishes around water supply surrounded by limestone.

| Good Old Days

Northwest Missouri saw several skirmishes during the Civil War, although there was not the bitterness found in more southerly places. Near my grandmother's home was a never-failing, hand-dug well, walled up with the native limestone that was so plentiful in the region. A good water supply was difficult to find during those hot summer months, so the Union Army’s Boys in Blue and the Confederate Boys in Gray declared a daily truce at sunset when not a shot was fired.

The first evening, the Southern troops came first to the well, dipped water for their horses and drew a supply for their personal needs, after which they withdrew a reasonable distance so the Northern troops could do the same. The next evening, the order was reversed and the Northern troops drew water first. Older people here could remember when the sound of guns ceased at sunset.

This well was still in existence when the farm came into my possession. A few years later a state road was built that took the famous old well. Even now, however, when evening comes and peaceful quiet settles in our valley, it is not hard to imagine the ghostly figures in blue and gray gathered about the old well.

Mrs. Curtis Seal
Denver, Missouri

Back in 1955 a call went out from the editors of the then CAPPER’s Weekly asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell. So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and in 1956, the first My Folks title – My Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true tales from CAPPER’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available to our growing online community. 

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