April 8, 1861
Lucius Polk’s military career began when he enlisted as a private in the Yell Rifles. His first military action came soon after when the Rifles joined other Arkansas troops in Little Rock (Pulaski County) to prevent the contents of the Federal Arsenal from being removed and used by the Federal army or destroyed. Thanks to the actions of the Arkansas troops, they were used instead to bolster the Confederate cause. During the Civil War, Polk rose to the rank of brigadier general under Major General Patrick Cleburne late in 1862. He achieved this command post while being wounded numerous times in the course of the war.