Anniversary of the Grand Army of the Republic Campfire inside Fort Davidson

6/22/2013 | Battle of Pilot Knob State Historic Site | Pilot Knob, MO

About 100 years ago, aging Union soldiers held their last Grand Army of the Republic (G.A.R.) campfire inside the walls of Fort Davidson. The Grand Army of the Republic was the largest organization of Civil War Veterans. In its hey-day, there were almost 600 posts in Missouri towns and Ironton and Pilot Knob both had their own post. The veterans would hold their meetings on meeting day at the Union Church, which was about 200 yards away on the current historic site property and then in the evening march over to the fort, sit down, toast old commanders and comrades, then swap lies. General William T. Sherman suggested that the G.A.R. campfires “encourage the men who saved the Union to be of good cheer; to meet often at camp-fires; sing their old songs; tell their stories with reasonable exaggerations, and always cultivate the comradeship begotten of war…”  By 1913, old age was taking its toll on Civil War veterans and the Ironton and Pilot Knob G.A.R. posts were on the verge of folding. Join us as several re-enactors relive the old campfire stories, toasts, songs and camaraderie that made up the G.A.R. campfires.  Many of the re-enactors will be portraying their ancestors and telling of their battlefield exploits.  It’s been 100 years since the voices of the soldiers spoke inside the fort. Listen to them once again.

Event times: 7 p.m. - 9 p.m.

This event is part of the Great American Backyard Campout. Click here for more information and events.

118 East Maple, Pilot Knob, MO | (573) 546-3454

Associated activities

  • Interpretive Programs