The first armed action of the Civil War in Missouri will be noted Saturday, October 6 at 11 a.m., with the dedication of a historical marker near the Liberty Arsenal. Three organizations, including the City of Liberty, the Native Sons and Daughters of Greater Kansas City, and the Clay County Millennium Board, will dedicate the marker located at the junction of Hwy 291, Southview Drive, and Seven Hills Road in Liberty.
Clay County historian and reenactor Jay Jackson will review "The Significance of the Liberty Arsenal." Other participants in the marker dedication include Dot Benner, President of the Native Sons and Daughters of Greater Kansas City; John Dollingham, Chairman of the Clay County Millennium Board; Greg Canuteson, Mayor of Liberty; and Ross Marshall, Chairman of the Historical Markers Committee of the NS&DGKC.
The action at the Liberty Arsenal on April 20, 1861, just a week after the fall of Fort Sumter, was particularly significant because it served to warn Federal authorities in St. Louis to the rising tide of secessionist activity, enabling Federal officials to transfer St. Louis Arsenal weapons and stores to Illinois and to reinforce the Jefferson Barracks. This Clay County incident is credited by many historians with precipitating the actions that kept Missouri in the Union.