Southwestern Illinois Civil War soldiers featured in new book

Arcadia Publishing in Charleston, S.C., announces the publication of “Union Soldiers of Southwestern Illinois,” a new history of the area by author John J. Dunphy.

The men of southwestern Illinois, both white and Black, rallied to the Union banner when the Civil War broke out. 

Lewis Martin, an escaped slave, enlisted in the Union army and suffered horrendous injuries at the Battle of the Crater. 

The entire 1864 class at Shurtleff College in Alton joined up. 

So many men from McKendree College in Lebanon served in the Illinois 117th that it became known as the “McKendree Brigade.” 

Some of the volunteers came from pioneer American stock, like Franklin Moore, whose forefathers fought in the War of 1812 and the Revolution. 

Others, such as Swiss-born John Kuhn, were immigrants. 

Author John J. Dunphy follows the men from southwestern Illinois who risked their lives to end the Southern rebellion.

Dunphy is the author of three other books for Arcadia/The History Press: “From Christmas to Twelfth Night in Southern Illinois,” “Abolitionism and the Civil War in Southwestern Illinois” and “Murder and Mayhem in Southwestern Illinois.” He owns the Second Reading Book Shop in Alton. He can be visited on Facebook.

For more information, visit


The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158

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