Time Period: Civil War through Reconstruction (1861 - 1874) - Starting with H

Homer

The Homer was a steamboat that plied the waters of the Ouachita River in the early 1860s. It achieved significance for its role in the Camden Expedition of 1864, when Union troops seized it, along with its cargo, and sunk it. Confederate soldiers later used its timbers to bridge the Ouachita. The Homer, built for $30,000 in Parkersburg, Virginia (now West Virginia), in 1859, went into service on November 14, 1859, at the Port of Cincinnati, Ohio. It was a 194-ton sidewheel packet measuring 148 feet long, twenty-eight feet wide, and five feet deep. Its co-owners were Levi Hopkins of Mason County, Virginia, and his father-in-law, stock dealer and farmer William H. Neale of Parkersburg. Neale and Hopkins sold the Homer …

Hopefield, Burning of

This punitive expedition relates to Union army efforts to secure Memphis, Tennessee, as a supply and hospital base capable of supporting ongoing operations against Vicksburg, Mississippi. It stands as an early example of the shift toward hard war tactics that would increase throughout the remainder of the war. The decision to burn the village of Hopefield (Crittenden County), directly across the Mississippi River from Memphis, had roots in events initiated in January 1863, including a similar expedition conducted against Mound City (Crittenden County). In early January, under orders from Trans-Mississippi Department commander Lieutenant General Theophilus H. Holmes, Captain James H. McGehee led his unattached company of Arkansas cavalry on an extended raid through Crittenden County with orders to scout the …

Hospitals (Civil War)

A wide range of Civil War hospitals in Arkansas included field hospitals established in the immediate aftermath of battle, commandeered houses and churches, and somewhat permanent post hospitals in occupied areas. Union bases tended to have more purpose-built hospital facilities, while Confederate doctors made use of any available buildings, such as colleges, hotels, churches, and private homes. The need for hospital facilities became obvious soon after Arkansas seceded from the Union and the new Confederate recruits became ill from the myriad diseases that afflicted their camps. Hospitals were established wherever large groups of troops gathered, often treating soldiers from specific regiments or from the same states. In early 1862, for instance, Confederate forces in Washington County established the Mount Comfort …

Hovey, Charles Edward

Charles Edward Hovey was a major general in the Union army during the Civil War, serving as the Federal commander at the Action at Hill’s Plantation (a.k.a. Battle of Cotton Plant) and leading a brigade at the capture of Fort Hindman. While he served only briefly in Arkansas, Hovey was involved in these two major actions, which helped ultimately to secure the state for the Union. Born in Thetford, Vermont, on April 26, 1827, Hovey was the son of Alfred Hovey and Abigail Howard Hovey. One of eleven children, Hovey attended school until the age of fifteen, when he was hired as a teacher. After several years in the education field, Hovey worked as a lumberman before entering Dartmouth College in …

Humphries, Ban, and Albert H. Parker (Murders of)

Sometime on the night of August 28–29, 1868, an African-American man named Ban (sometimes referred to as Dan) Humphries was killed near Searcy (White County). Reports indicate that he was killed by William E. Brundidge (sometimes referred to as Brundridge or Bundridge) and two other alleged members of the Ku Klux Klan. In September or October 1868, Albert H. Parker, who had been sent to White County to investigate the murder of Humphries and general Klan activities in the area, was also murdered. These events were part of a larger pattern of upheaval surrounding the election of 1868. Arkansas had been readmitted to the Union in June of that year and would be able to participate in a national election …

Huntersville, Skirmish at

A brief and unimportant clash between small units, this skirmish is a great example of the majority of fighting that took place in the state in the latter half of 1864 and afterward. With the conclusion of the Camden Expedition in the spring of 1864, Union forces under the command of Major General Frederick Steele returned to the Little Rock (Pulaski County) area. Camping in numerous forts and other fortifications constructed in the area, the Federal troops rarely launched major offensive operations in Arkansas for the remainder of the war. However, in an effort to keep Confederate forces off balance, Federals did patrol regularly. These patrols engaged enemy forces when they encountered them and prevented the Confederates from launching major …

Huntsville Massacre

In the midst of the Civil War, on January 10, 1863, nine men were taken from a guardhouse and led to a field on the Samuel P. Vaughn farm about one mile northeast of Huntsville (Madison County), where they were shot by Union soldiers on the bank of Vaughn’s Branch near the road that led to Carrollton (Carroll County). One survived. Although the reason for the execution may never be known, it may have been in response to the ambush of a Union army escort and the mistreatment of the daughters of Isaac Murphy by locals. Isaac Murphy was elected in 1861 to the Secession Convention from Madison County on the Unionist platform, receiving eighty-five percent of the vote and …

Hurricane Creek, Skirmish at

aka: Skirmish at Hunter's Crossing
The Skirmish at Hurricane Creek was a Civil War battle fought on October 23, 1864, at Hunter’s Crossing, two miles south of present-day Bryant in Saline County. Confederate forces ambushed a Union cavalry force on its return to Little Rock (Pulaski County) from a raid on Princeton (Dallas County). On October 19, Major George Avery’s Union cavalry command left Little Rock and proceeded to Princeton in order to capture and destroy weapons reportedly stored there. On October 21, they were met near Tulip (Dallas County) by the advance pickets of Colonel John L. Logan’s cavalry, resulting in constant skirmishing until reaching Princeton. Here, the Confederates were pushed south of town approximately two miles. The Union forces returned to Princeton, where …

Hynes, William Joseph

William Joseph Hynes was a Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives. He was the at-large representative from Arkansas in the Forty-Third Congress, serving from 1873 to 1875. William J. Hynes was born on March 31, 1843, in County Clare, Ireland. He was the son of Thomas Hynes and Catherine O’Shea Hynes. His father died in 1848, and Hynes’s mother brought the family to the United States five years later, settling first in Springfield, Massachusetts. It was in Massachusetts where Hynes received his early education, a program of study that included training in printing. He worked first in newspaper publishing but turned to law. He apprenticed in the office of a local Springfield attorney and then moved south, being …