Many Civil War battles in Missouri resulted from intense guerrilla activity which was exacerbated by Missouri's division over slavery. First-time Kirkwood novelist Jim Erwin explores the dynamic in Guerrillas in Civil War Missouri.

The is hosting the launch of Guerrillas in Civil War Missouri Tuesday at 7 p.m. Erwin will discuss the work of historical non-fiction and copies will be available for purchase from Main Street Books. Refreshments and food will be served.

While researching the violent time in America's history, Erwin was most fascinated by how small of a place Missouri was during the Civil War. Adversaries frequently knew each because they had been neighbors before the war, according to Erwin.

Most of the 1,000 battles fought in the state were between small units of Missouri Union troops attacking or being ambushed by small bands of Missouri guerrillas.

"I think that the personal element made the guerrilla warfare especially vicious," Erwin said.

'Kirkwood Patch' Editor Owen Skoler contributed to this article.

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