Battle of Athens Re-enactment August 2 and 3

By Guest Contributor

First posted on 07-11-2008

Cannons will boom again as the Battle of Athens is re-enacted on Aug. 2 and Aug. 3 at Battle of Athens State Historic Site near Revere. Sponsored by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources and the Holmes Brigade, the event is free and open to the public. Festivities on both days will begin at 9 a.m. with the opening of the Civil War-era camps, followed by a variety of activities.

The Aug. 5, 1861, Civil War battle will be recreated by re-enactors at 2 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday. Authentic Civil War camps will be open to the public both days. A peace conference meeting between Union Home Guard and Missouri State Guard representatives will be held at

11:30 a.m. Saturday in the Thome-Benning House.

Various living history demonstrations will be going on throughout the weekend. The event will also include period craftsmen demonstrating and selling their wares, period musicians and period food vendors between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Sunday. At 7 p.m. Saturday, musical entertainment and a dance will follow the day’s activities. Free tours of the houses and grounds that are part of Battle of Athens State Historic Site will be given both days.

The Battle of Athens was fought between David Moore’s pro-Union force of approximately 400 men and Col. Martin Green’s pro-South army of about 2,000 men. The battle began around 5 a.m. on Aug. 5, with Moore’s troops being surrounded on three sides by Green’s men and the Des Moines River to their rear. Despite being outnumbered at least five to one, Moore’s men were better trained and equipped. After about two hours of fighting, Green’s troops were demoralized and in full retreat. At least 50 soldiers had been wounded or killed. Bitter feelings between neighbors in the town of Athens continued for decades after the battle. Battle of Athens State Historic Site administers many of the remaining buildings in Athens and interprets the battle and history of the town.

The historic site is located in Athens 10 miles north of Kahoka on Highway 81, then

five miles east on Highway CC.  For additional information, contact the historic site directly at

660-877-3871 or call the Department of Natural Resources toll free at 800-334-6946 (voice) or

800-379-2419 (Telecommunications Device for the Deaf). For more information on state parks and historic sites, visit the Web at http://www.mostateparks.com