Battle of Belmont, Missouri

Photos/text courtesy of Craig Swain, Leesburg, VA
For any use of these photos contact
Columbus-Belmont State Park:
Battle of Belmont: Official Records Atlas
Map from the 1890 Mississippi River Commission survey
Modern day satellite view of the battlefield
To the Sound of the Guns. In his Blog, Craig discusses the changes to the river course and a few other interesting points
1. Battle of Belmont Marker (Missouri side): Historical Marker Database
2. Mississippi County, Missouri Marker: Historical Marker Database

3. The Battle of Belmont: Catlin Historical Society
4. Battle Summary: Belmont, MO
5. Battle of Belmont - Wikipedia
6. Columbus-Belmont State Park:

(March 2009) Enlarge Marker at the site. The marker is located at the end of Missouri Highway 80, best reached by traveling east from the town of East Prairie

(March 2009) Enlarge The main part of the battlefield. Looking from Missouri Highway 80 to the north across the battle area. At the time of the battle, this was heavily timbered bottom land. In this vicinity, the 27th Illinois, commanded by Col. Napoleon B. Buford, marched along a road to catch the main Confederate line on the south flank, helping to collapse the initial defense. The far tree line in the center and left edges the old river bottom. Thus across that ground the rest of the Federal line sparred with Pillow’s Confederates. The “pond” was likely to the left of this view. The field is private property



(March 2009) Enlarge Location of the "town" of Belmont. A grain elevator is all that remains visible to the casual visitor. The town itself didn't grow in size until after the war, as a rail-to-barge transshipping point. The railroad bed followed the road at this point up to the river bank. At the time of the war, the railroad was not here, but a plank road allowed the 27th Illinois to slip onto the left flank of the Confederate lines

(March 2009) Enlarge Timbered bottom lands. Looking at the stand of trees where Belmont once stood. The ground today is reminiscent of the swampy timbered bottom lands over which the combatants fought


(March 2009) Enlarge Based on the location of Belmont and the old railroad trace, the Confederate camp must have been to the north of the marker location. Likely the spot was to the left of the road in this view. Today the area is a dead end at the river bank. The land beyond this point is private property


(March 2009) Enlarge Looking from the Missouri shore toward Columbus, Kentucky. The river is approximately 800 yards wide at this point. The bluffs on the Kentucky side have eroded somewhat since the war, but are still imposing. In the center of view on the bluffs are pavilions in Columbus-Belmont State Park. The giant chain spanned the river near this point. And of course to the left is a river barge, indicating this section of the river sees a lot of traffic even in modern times

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