Thursday, March 3, 2011

William T. Anderson


Blog comment opinion is continuing to run decidedly against my boys this week. Yet, we must persevere and finish Gentleman Raider week. Today we feature a picture of William T. Anderson. Mr. Anderson was one of Quantrill's raiders, and was a fairly important member of the group. He participated in the Raid on Lawrence Kansas. After the raid, his family was rounded up and imprisoned. They were housed in a three story building in town, and the building collapsed, killing his sister, and crippling another sister. 

In 1864 he had a dispute with William Clark Quantrill, so he started his own raiding group. He was killed in an ambush in 1864, and his head was cut off and put on display on a telegraph pole in Richmond Missouri.

21 comments:

  1. No comment today other than.

    Those that want to sign their names,and can stop using ANON, but don't want to become a registered follower can sign their names. Just go to the area below the comment box and "click" on the "Name/URL". That will open 2 boxes,. In the top box you can write your name and then it will appear as what ever the name you put into the box. That is what I do, and it appears in Black instead of Blue.

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  2. This 'boy' of yours was Nate's person-of-Mystery last Jan.29th. Now it starts to get boring here.

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  3. Ellena,"boring" sounds like you are not an American, American history does not get boring to Americans.
    I also don't believe reading this blog is a requirement,.

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  4. Was he also known as "Bloody Bill" Anderson? Or am I thinking of someone else?

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  5. Well PJM, I for one have enjoyed your Gentlemen Raiders Week and I love this picture of William Anderson!

    I think some people are having a problem with the "gentlemen" part of the gentlemen raiders. I guess it depends on what one's definition of a gentleman is. All of the men this week cannot be faulted for their attire, snappy dressers one and all.

    I suppose that some are upset that killers are called gentlemen, but I think that if you examine their lives, you'll see that at least in their own minds, they were retaliating for what they believed were first wrongs done to them.

    In the case of William Anderson, the killing and crippling of his sisters occurred on August 13, and the raid on Lawrence followed on August 21. While some might believe this to be an unequal revenge, the raiders were still mindful of not harming women (which in their minds was the more serious offense).

    The trouble is that many people stop at the raid on Lawrence as the epitome of evil, but following this raid, the Federal Army sanctioned the forced expulsion of all civilians in four entire Missouri Counties and the destruction of their property (President Truman's mother being one of the many to have her home burned).

    While I understand that war is terrible, I would have to agree with those that would hold that William Anderson's conduct late in the war went well beyond anything resembling gentlemanly conduct, and like pirates of old, he certainly deserved to have his head placed on display.

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  6. Hey Roger, thanks for the tip, I did not know that. This William Anderson guy looks like one tough dude. I wouldn't want to come up against him. Does anyone know what the star on his hat signifies? That part about how they displayed his head on a pole is pretty gruesum.

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  7. I'll be glad when Saturday arrives and we get on to more pleasant subjects!

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  8. Almost forgot to thank Ellena for the shout out. Those who would like to read more on Bloody Bill can see my write up here:

    http://tinyurl.com/bloodybill

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  9. By chance, if the South has won the war, these men would have been hailed as heroes and our Northern heroes would have been the villians.

    I feel I can say this because I had kin die fighting for the North and the South.

    I love this site. Thank you for your time in bringing it to us.

    Linda in Texas

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  10. Well it is a striking photo. The raiders did not pluder, did they?? but fought and killed which was their purpose. I will pass along Roger's comment to a friend who cannot figure out how to comment on my blog and does not have a google account, also beyond her. So we learn other things from other blogs and commenters...

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  11. thanks roger for another lesson....

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  12. OPOTD is having a great week.

    Have to say, Bloody Bill is an interesting figure in U.S. history and was a total psychopath. Jesse James must have been no older than fifteen when he joined up with Anderson and the horrors he witnessed, no doubt, left an indelible mark on him.

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  13. My husband is a descendant (on the pale-faced side of the family)of the only male survivor of the Shelton Laurel Massacre, which was led by Keithly's (or Keith's) Raiders. Because they believed there were Union sympathizers in the area, Keith's men rounded up all of the people in the town, except my husband's ancestor, who was gathering eggs in the barn.

    The women were tortured, and then the males - aged 10 to mid-70s - were shot.

    These were NOT gentlemen, thank you very much.

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  14. bethany,,,are you thinkin of
    whisperin bill anderson ?
    couldnt resist,,,!
    oldbear.

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  15. Boy oh boy - this topic seems to have struck some nerves. Congratulations and thank you for the interesting topic and discussions.

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  16. I so love your site and the history you bring to it! Yikes though these guys were not nice men! But as one said in an earlier psot if the north had won they may have been the heroes. Interesing thoughts going through here. thank you for the work you put into this. As I do love history.
    Blessings

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  17. This is a touchy subject.I have studied the war for years and I can conclude that the south was right and they fought hard for what they believed in.
    All the gentlemen raiders are my heroes being a southener and a desendent of confederate blood.

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  18. Well, PJM, you certainly got 'em all cranked up. Who's in the barrel for tomorrow?

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  19. I want to know all aspects of our history. Just don't get the idea it all has to be roses and sweetness. The "bad guys" are good to know about. Maybe being kin to John Wesley Hardin is what is wrong with me! Seriously, we don't need to bury or ignore any part of our wonderful history.

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  20. yup; Bloody Bill, he was called.

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