Who was Turner anyway?

Who was Turner anyway?

Click on this image to find out who Turner was.

Field Musicians Wanted!

A Turner Bugler, 2004

Click on this image to learn about opportunities as a bugler, fifer or drummer with the Turner Brigade.

Letter from James Lindsay, Esq.


May 1861

From The Missouri Democrat, Monday, May 6, 1861.



IRONTON, MO., May 4, 1861.

Editors of the Missouri Democrat:

GENTLEMEN:  About two weeks ago a paragraph appeared in a sheet called the De Soto Herald, falsely, wilfully [sic], and maliciously alleging that I had been ordered off from this town.  While at St. Louis I was asked if it was so, by several friends, from different parts of the State, but at that time I had no idea that the paragraph had been copied generally over the State, and I treated the inquiry very lightly.  Since my return home, on looking over the “exchanges” of the Furnace, I find that the press generally copied the villainous, lying paragraph; hence the necessity of writing this article in order that the public may properly understand it.

For a long time, the Jesuit in Arcadia, who edits the Prospect, in order that he might monopolize the printing business in this valley, has been concocting schemes and organizing secret mobs in surrounding neighborhoods for the purpose of attacking and destroying the Furnace office.  He thought he had his triggers all set, and accordingly found a willing tool in the editor of the De Soto Herald, who had resided only a few months in this part of Missouri, and who is a total stranger to me, never having seen him, and caused him to make the lying paragraph which was evidently dictated to him by Jesuit Faber, editor of the Arcadia Prospect, and promptly copied and accompanied with a preconcerted editorial article commencing with a lie, embodied with lies, and ending with a lie.  I chanced to get hold of a copy of the Herald the day after its issues, and wrote a letter in reply on Saturday, which made its appearance in the Furnace on the same day of the issue of the Prospect, and a short time in advance of it, and believing that the Furnace had reached those to whom it was mailed, and that my letter was before the public, I took no further notice of the contemplated act, so far as the Press was concerned.  But before I left St. Louis I made inquiry, and found that the Furnace containing my letter had been lost between Pilot Knob and St. Louis, and did not reach the subscribers and exchanges in that city.  That letter is as follows:


IRONTON, MO., April 13, ’61.

Editors of the Furnace:

GENTLEMEN:  In the De Soto Herald of the 12th inst., a copy of which I was shown this morning, I find the following insignificant, pitiful, contemptible, low-lived, low-bred, and lying paragraph:

ORDERED TO VAMOSE:  We learned from a passenger on the up-train yesterday that James Lindsay, editor of an Abolition paper at Ironton, had been notified by the respectable citizens of Iron county to “take up his bed and walk”—that they had no further use for him in their midst.  The cause of this proceeding on the part of the citizens was, that Lindsay harbored and rendered assistance to a negro thief, who had been detected in trying to entice away slaves, and ordered to leave the State.  “The way of the transgressor is hard.”

The editor of the De Soto Herald is Sam. R. Raymond, who only a few months ago edited the Alexandria Reveille, an open and avowed Republican paper.  He has come down, it seems, to De Soto, and like all other renegades and doughfaces, when he travels South, thinks he must do something to make himself sound.  In the first place, I am not editor of the Furnace, having retired from that duty last November.

No citizen of Iron county did, or ever will, order me to leave it; neither would it be healthy for any one to do it.  The other allusion is too rotten a lie to even allude to.  Raymond is a rotten subject and deserter from the Republican party, and a man I never saw.  I judge he owns no negroes; and doubtless belongs to that class of beings who “steal pewter off a dead nigger’s eyes.”  He is a pusillanimous creature without a habitation or a name, and seems to be skulking around the country, like any other cowardly dog would do, seeking to distract public opinion, and making himself obnoxious by his extreme views.

Every good citizen in the valley would testify to the lying villainy of the dirty dog.  This is all the notice he is entitled to at my hands.

I only notice the thing at all, because some innocent persons might see his paragraph, and be led astray by it.



After I had written this and handed it into the Furnace office, I went home to my farm and did not see the Prospect until Sunday noon, when it was shown to me, and I immediately made up my mind to give Jesuit Faber a thrashing, knowing that it was idling away time to notice him in any other sense.  The next morning I procured a small young hickory stick, went to the Prospect office and saw no one in, and then took my position in front of Mr. Newman’s shop, awaiting the arrival of Faber.  But he did not come along, and my patience being exhausted, I returned to his office, and was informed by Mr. Coulter, the printer, that Faber had taken Hancock’s hack the night previous, passed up to the depot, and left for St. Louis that morning.  It turns out, however, that this was not the truth.  According to the Jesuit’s own statement in his last paper, he was informed that I wanted to see him, and he procured a hack and took a half moon circle around Sheppard mountain as a “near cut,” and made his way off.  I had no other intention except to give him a genteel thrashing, as he richly deserve, which I surely would have attempted, if his legs had not taken him off.

This fellow has neither political nor moral principle.  He is here the leader of the secessionists and disunionists.  Last fall he was the organ of Douglas Democracy.  At the same time he was both of these things, and many others equally inconsistent.  I am told that when he is in St. Louis, he sponges his beer and his grub in the German Republican saloons, by being a broader mouthed Republican than anybody else.

In regard to the malicious lie which he caused to be promulgated, that I had been ordered out from this county, I have only to say, that I dare the man to face me and say that he has done any such thing; and if there should be a single one, which I do not believe, that would personally approach me with any such message, he would get a bullet put through his head.

I have lived nearly thirty years in this part of Missouri; I have a large family of young ones; it is their native home and their birth place; the second of whom is a son, who is now a private in the First Missouri Regiment, and of the Carondelet company, commanded by Capt. Miller, gallantly and patriotically marching under the stars and stripes in defence of his country, and against its internal enemies; and I intend to live here as long as it suits me to do so, and no mushroom new comers, can get me out of it, unless by carrying off my dead body.

Very truly yours,          JAMES LINDSAY.