File:Quantrill, William (Power Flask).jpg

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This powder flask belonged to William Clark Quantrill, who led guerilla raids against Union soldiers in Kansas and Missouri during the Civil War. The flask was used to hold gunpowder. It is approximately 8" x 3" (20.32 x 7.62 cm). Born in Canal Dover (now Dover), Ohio, Quantrill (1837-1865) became a schoolteacher. He went to Utah in 1858, where he made a living gambling. A year later he moved to Kansas, which was embroiled in a dispute between free-soil advocates and pro-slavery supporters. Quantrill worked as a schoolteacher until the Civil War erupted in 1861. He joined the Confederacy and began engaging in guerrilla-style raids against Union soldiers and free-soil supporters. On August 21, 1863 he led one of the most brutal attacks of the war. Quantrill and 450 of his raiders attacked Lawrence, Kansas, an anti-slavery stronghold, murdering 183 men and boys and setting fire to the city. In October, Quantrill attacked the force of Union General James Blunt, killing eighty of his soldiers. Quantrill then retreated to Texas. He was shot in 1865 near Taylorsville while attempting to lead a raid into Kentucky. Quantrill died in a military prison in June 1865.


Dover Historical Society 91.6.4


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