Missouri Cavalry CSA

From “Family History – Morris/Sellars/Morgan/Cooper”

by Thomas Earl Morris, Grandson

When Carrell Sellars moved his family to Benton County, Arkansas, his son William Thomas was 17 years of age. In early 1861, when William Thomas was 19 and Sarah Leticia Ingle was 15 years of age, they met and fell in love; but the war clouds were gathering. The Civil War broke out in the spring and, like most young men his age, William Thomas shouldered a rifle, and upon departing kissed Sarah Leticia, the one and only time prior to their marriage.

The war touched practically all families in the South. William Thomas and his brother Fayette Sellars fought side by side from the beginning of the war to the end. They were with General Price in his raid on Missouri through Warsaw (140 miles north of Benton County, Arkansas), when they whipped the northern forces; on through Sedalia, Missouri, where they won again and to a spot near Kansas City, where they suffered reverses at the hands of the Federals and had to retreat 180 miles south and into Arkansas. Thomas Ingle, brother of Sarah Leticia, also fought side by side with William Thomas Sellars.

At the time the Confederates captured Warsaw, Missouri, the Federals were stabling their horses in the Christian Church, a building which earlier had served the Federals as a hospital until smallpox broke out among the patients. Then the patients were removed and horses were stabled in the building. It was at this time that William Thomas Sellars and Thomas Ingle were making raids on Federal property and were leading Federal horses one night from this same Christian Church, when a Yankee officer sleeping on the porch awakened and discovered what was going on. Sellars was leading the horse and Ingle was behind him with his hands on the animal’s hips trying to ease him along silently. The awakened Federal was about to shoot Ingle in the back when Sellars beat him to the draw and shot the officer just to the left of the middle of the forehead, stunning him but not killing him.

Years later this officer (in 1879) took dinner with the William Thomas Sellars family in Bloomfield, Arkansas, and at which time the shooting was a lively but friendly topic of conversation.

Contributed by the written permission of W. Cody Martin, great-great-great-great-grandson of William Thomas Sellars, to the Hood County Genealogical Society on August 15, 1999. A copy of “Family History – Morris/Sellars/Morgan/Cooper” by Thomas Earl Morris is located in the Hood County Library.