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Encyclopedia Dubuque


"Encyclopedia Dubuque is the online authority for all things Dubuque, written by the people who know the city best.”
Marshall Cohen—researcher and producer, CNN

Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa, and the Iowa Museum Association.


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UNION GUARDS. Organized as a military group in 1856 as tensions rose toward the CIVIL WAR, the Union Guards were organized by Peter LORIMIER. They appeared at nearly all outdoor public functions with the DUBUQUE CITY GUARDS. By 1859, however, there were four military companies in the community and the Union Guards was not among them. (1)

The grounds on which the Union Guards drilled was located on bottom land adjacent to LAKE PEOSTA. In August, 1861 the ground was opened as CAMP UNION which initially served as a recruiting center for the Ninth and 12th Iowa Volunteer Infantry. It contained ten barracks, water and bathing facilities, and outdoor cooking and eating sites. Within one month of its opening, the camp contained six hundred soldiers. (2)



1. Oldt, Franklin T. The History of Dubuque County, Iowa. Chicago: Goodspeed Historical Association, p. 253

2. Reber, Craig D. "Dubuque Home for Military Training," Telegraph Herald, April 13 2011, p. 6