Historians work to make Black Jack a prominent Civil War landmark
Here`s a bit of American Civil War trivia: What many consider the first battle in the bloodiest war in the American history, the Battle of Black Jack, didn`t claim a single life. That battle, a skirmish between bands of pro- and anti-slavery men, occurred 5 years before what many textbooks and historians refer to as the first official Civil War event at Fort Sumter in 1861. But for a growing number of historians, the Civil War started on June 2, 1856, on a small patch of land 3 miles east of Baldwin City. "This is where the Civil War started, as far as I`m concerned," said Kerry Altenbernd, a tour guide at the battleground site on the battle`s 151st anniversary.
Senate approves Black Jack resolution - The first battle of war
The Kansas Senate today approved a resolution commemorating the 1856 Battle of Black Jack near Baldwin. The resolution recognizes that the battle was the first of the Civil War not only in Kansas but also of the war. It also refers to the commemoration and events planned for the 150th anniversary of the battle on June 2-3.
The Battle of Black Jack - plans are solidified (Article no longer available from the original source)
The Battle of Black Jack was the result of retaliation between anti- and pro-slavery groups. An anti-slavery group led by Henry C. Pate had burned down several buildings in Lawrence on May 21, 1856. Brown's group murdered five pro-slavery men, which is known as the Pottawatomie Massacre. On June 1 Brown joined forces with another anti-slavery group to form a band of 27 men. They were searching for Pate's men who were looking for Brown as a result of the massacre. On the next day, Brown led an attack on Pate's men who were camped near Black Jack Creek. The battle lasted 3 hours and Pate's men surrendered. The government forces later made Brown release Pate's men.
Work continues at Black Jack park - First Battle of Civil War (Article no longer available from the original source)
Work continues at the Black Jack Battlefield and Nature Park as volunteers scurry to meet the deadline of its dedication on June 2, 2006, the 150th anniversary of the battle which sparked the Civil War. The Friends of the Black Jack Battlefield established a trust and purchased the 40-acre site. Pearson joined forces with the infamous John Brown and other anti-slavery proponents in 1856 to fight slave-state intruders in the Battle of Black Jack, which is just now becoming accepted as the first real battle of the Civil War, which didn't "officially" start until April 12, 1861 when the Confederates fired on Fort Sumter.