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October 26, 2016

December 24, 1864 Christmas Eve, "The Killing of Allen McReynolds" Execution

December 24, 1864,
"The Killing of Allen McReynolds"
HDQRS. CO. H, SEVENTH CAV. MISSOURI STATE MILITIA, Warrensburg, Mo., edited to what seems to be the most correct date.
Commanding District of Central Missouri:
COLONEL: I beg leave to submit the following statement connected with the killing of Allen McReynolds: I ordered Lieutenant Crain with a portion of the command to proceed to Grand Pass Church, some six miles east of Waverly, and to remain there until joined by me. While there he sent two men of his command to the house of Allen McReynolds to get something to eat and to palm themselves off as bushwhackers, which they did successfully. While there McReynolds told them he was willing to feed them and aid them in any way he could, but declined to carry provisions to the brush for fear of being caught and killed by the Federals. He also informed them that they were unsafe where they were, as squadrons of Federal troops had left Warrensburg, Sedalia, and Marshall the day before to thoroughly scout the country thereabouts, and to then concentrate at Miami. He also advised them to proceed to one Tracy's for safety and security, it being an out-of-the-way place and where Federal scouts seldom traveled; that he (Tracy) had plenty of forage and would take pleasure in entertaining them. When the command were through feeding, Lieutenant Crain arrested McReynolds and brought him out to the command. Soon after I joined them; heard the evidence above given, which he (McReynolds) acknowledged, as also to the fact that Quantrill and band had stopped with him several times, 
William Clarke Quantrill was notorious. A ruthless Confederate guerilla leader during the Civil War, Quantrill and his loyal band of pro-Confederate raiders carried out some of the more heinous atrocities in American history. Members of his organization included men such as the Younger brothers, Frank and Jesse James, and William T “Bloody Bill” Anderson.
William Clarke Quantrill, Wanted Poster

and other bands of bushwhackers which he had never reported to the Federal authorities. On consultation with the squadron commanders (Captain Hamblin and Lieutenant Crain) it was decided to execute McReynolds, which was carried out under my orders.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
 R. M. BOX,
Captain Company H, Seventh Cavalry Missouri State Militia.
[First indorsement.]
Saint Louis, February 41865.
Respectfully referred to Col. John F. Philips, commanding District of Central Missouri, for a full statement of this case.
By order of Major-General Dodge:
Assistant Adjutant-General.
[Second indorsement.]
Warrensburg, February 81865.
Respectfully returned to headquarters Department of the Missouri and attention invited to enclosed reports.
There is no doubt but McReynolds was an intense rebel, and that he wore the cloak of loyalty as a disguise under which he was secretly engaged in the meanest acts of treason, giving succor, information, food, and encouragement to bushwhackers. The entire community where he lived were confirmed secessionists, and whether from the effects of early associations or existing sympathy, the fact is notorious that bushwhackers frequented, or habitually traversed that neighborhood, and its citizens made no effort to destroy or get rid of these pestilential outlaws, and when so prominent a member of that community as Allen McReynolds confessed his support of and adhesion to these bands in the face of his sworn allegiance, and in view of the terrible outrages so recently committed by guerrillas, it was beyond all endurance and it was deemed a necessity to teach this community and its like a warning lesson by executing summarily the chief among its citizens.
Colonel Seventh Cavalry Missouri State Militia, Comdg. District.
 [Third Indorsement.]
Saint Louis, February 191865.
Respectfully forwarded to the Adjutant-General of the Army.
I gave this matter a thorough investigation at the time, and as it was clearly proven that McReynolds defiantly and openly assisted bushwhackers under a guise that deceived us, I took no action, though I do not approve of unlawful acts. This was done by an officer, and such things sometimes tend to bad results. I have given such orders as will prohibit any such action recurring. Hereafter men caught in arms will have no mercy shown them.
Major-General, Commanding.
[Fourth indorsement.]
February 251865.
Respectfully submitted to the Secretary of War.
Assistant Adjutant-General.

excerpt from Guerrilla Warfare in Civil War Missouri, Volume IV, September 1864-June 1865 By Bruce Nichols

Allen McReynolds’s bullet-ridden, bruised, and lifeless body lay in the road his blood slowly flowing across the deep mud. The day was Christmas Eve 1864, the location Grand Pass, Saline County. Around noon, McReynolds’ wife, Martha, went to town with three of their children, leaving behind their eldest daughter, Elizabeth, and Mr. McReynolds to watch the youngest four children. Within an hour of Martha’s departure, soldiers from Union Col. Benjamin H. Wilson’s regiment came to the McReynolds’ home disguised as bushwhackers and demanded supplies. McReynolds refused, but he did provide them with a meal. Later that day, the disguised soldiers returned and took McReynolds to the edge of his property. Soon, Elizabeth was startled by the sound of pistols firing. Concerned for her father’s safety, she ran toward the shots where she soon met a Union soldier who informed her that “her father was lying down there dead.” She found him “stretched across the road, in the deepest mud” with seven or eight bullet holes in his body and bruises on his face. Allen McReynolds was buried on Christmas Day.
Diary of Elvira Scott, Collection # 1053 (Western Historical Manuscript Collection – University of  Missouri, Columbia; hereinafter cited WHMC-Columbia), 214. 2
Martha McReynolds to Editor, January 27, 1863, McReynolds Papers, Collection # 3605, WHMC –Columbia. 

Allen McReynolds, arrived in Missouri before the 1840 Federal census from his birth state of Virginia, was well documented as being executed Christmas eve in 1864 at about age fifty-seven, by Union troops, grandmother Martha Amanda Cooper crossed that river of death in 1878, at about age fifty-four. Allen's father, Samuel Daniel McReynolds, (fourth born of three brothers, six sisters), moved from birth place of Saline county, Missouri to Carthage in 1875, three years before his mother's death, forming a law firm with his wife's brother, John William Halliburton which dissolved when each partnered with their son about 1903, ~ ~ Allen and father then about 1920, they were with John H Flanigan,sr in McReynolds, McReynolds & Flanigan, when his father died in 1931, it became McReynolds & Flanigan, later taking in Flanigan's oldest son, John, jr in the 1930's, becoming, McReynolds, Flanigan & Flanigan, in 1949, the oldest family law firm in Missouri, taking in two more of John's sons in 1949 & 1953, the youngest, George, appointed, 1974, to Missouri State Appeal court's bench in Springfield, where Walter E Bailey had been appointed in 1925.

Allen McReynolds
Birth: 1807
Virginia, USA
Death: Dec. 24, 1864
Saline County
Missouri, USA

He was a wealthy, slave owner, he was executed by Union Troops
he married Martha Amanda Cooper
they had 11 children
children: Elizabeth(Robertson), William, Angeline, James, Samuel, Samantha(Blanchard), Amanda"Manda", Franklin, Lula(Tipton), Ida Lee(Kimmell) and Charles"Charley"

Family links:
  Martha Amanda Cooper Callaway (1822 - 1879)

  Elizabeth McReynolds Robertson (1840 - 1931)*
  William D McReynolds (1842 - 1917)*
  Angeline McReynolds Kennerly (1845 - 1920)*
  James McReynolds (1847 - 1848)*
  Samuel Daniel McReynolds (1849 - 1931)*
  Franklin C McReynolds (1853 - 1933)*
  Lula M McReynolds Tipton (1860 - 1947)*
  Charlie McReynolds (1861 - ____)*
  Ida Lee McReynolds Kimmell (1862 - 1956)*

*Calculated relationship
Grand Pass Methodist Church Cemetery
Grand Pass
Saline County
Missouri, USA

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