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Pilot Knob in Iron County, Missouri — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
 

Fort Davidson

 
 
Fort Davidson Marker - Front image. Click for full size.
By Homer Swain, September 25, 2010
1. Fort Davidson Marker - Front
Inscription. (Front):
Surrounded by the rugged splendor of the highest peaks of the Missouri Ozarks, Arcadia Valley lies in the geologic center of the Ozarks, one of the world's oldest mountain regions. The valley towns are in an area settled in the iron mining boom of the 1840s'-50's, when Pilot Knob here and Iron Mountain in nearby St. Francois County were thought to be of solid iron.

During the Civil War, the area was early occupied by Union forces to protect the Iron Mountain Railroad, completed between here and St. Louis, 1858. General U.S. Grant's first command post after his commission as a general was here, Aug. 8-18, 1861.

Fort Davidson, the earthen redoubt here, was defended by over 1,000 Federals under General Thomas Ewing against some 12,000 Confederates under General Sterling Price, Sept. 27, 1864. As a result of the engagement here at Pilot Knob, Price lost over 1,200 men to Ewing's some 200, and was halted in his drive to St. Louis. The fort, built 1863, named for Gen. J.W. Davidson, is owned by Clark National Forest and is maintained by the U.S. Forest Service.
(See other side)


(Back):
(Continued from other side)
Ironton was laid out as the seat of Iron County, 1857, and the courthouse was built 1858-60. The first settler in the valley was Ephraim Stout about 1807,
Fort Davidson Marker - Back image. Click for full size.
By Homer Swain, September 25, 2010
2. Fort Davidson Marker - Back
and Missouri's first working iron furnace, Asherbran's was built on Stout's Creek about 1815. The town of Arcadia was laid out and the Methodist Episcopal Arcadia High School opened, 1849. Later sold, it reopened as today's Ursuline Academy, 1877. The Home for Aged Baptists was built, 1923. On Fort Hill was Civil War Fort Hovey, also called Curtis.

Before the Iron Mountain R.R. reached here, 1858, and the town of Pilot Knob was founded, iron ore was hauled over the 1843 Ste. Genevieve, Iron Mountain, Pilot Knob Plank Road. Graniteville was founded when the first large quarry opened, 1869.

Here are Taum Sauk, 1,772 feet, highest peak in Missouri; Evangeline Falls; shut-ins on Stout's Creek; Lake Killarney; Tip Top Mountain, 1,500 feet; Royal Gorge; "Elephant Rocks"; and other sites. The name Ozarks is from the French abbreviation, Aux Arcs, for Aux Arkansas, meaning on the river, at the post, or in the country of the Arkansas.
 
Erected 1953 by State Historical Society of Missouri and State Highway Commission.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Missouri, State Historical Society of marker series.
 
Location. 37° 37.229′ N, 90° 38.424′ W. Marker is in Pilot Knob, Missouri, in Iron County. Marker is at the intersection
Fort Davidson Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, October 14, 2016
3. Fort Davidson Marker
View to north
of S. McCune Street and Maple Street (Missouri Highway 221), on the right when traveling north on S. McCune Street. Touch for map. Located next to Battle of Pilot Knob State Historic Site. Marker is in this post office area: Pilot Knob MO 63663, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Battle of Pilot Knob (a few steps from this marker); The Doomed Assault (within shouting distance of this marker); The Moat (within shouting distance of this marker); The Struggle for the Mountains (within shouting distance of this marker); The Powder Magazine (within shouting distance of this marker); The Fight for Ironton (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); a different marker also named Battle of Pilot Knob (about 400 feet away); a different marker also named The Battle of Pilot Knob (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Pilot Knob.
 
Also see . . .
1. Fort Davidson State Historic Site. (Submitted on November 27, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.)
2. Fort Davidson. Site photos at Civil War Album. (Submitted on November 27, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.) 
 
Categories. Forts, CastlesNatural ResourcesSettlements & SettlersWar, US Civil
 
Fort Davidson Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, October 14, 2016
4. Fort Davidson Marker
View to south
Remains of Fort Davidson are visible to the right of the marker
Fort Davidson Parapet image. Click for full size.
By Homer Swain, September 24, 2010
5. Fort Davidson Parapet
Reenactors man the fort for events scheduled around the battle anniversary.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on October 27, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 27, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 796 times since then and 44 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on November 27, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.   3, 4. submitted on October 27, 2016, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.   5. submitted on November 27, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.
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