One of the Civil War’s most infamous characters, William Clarke Quantrill, led a band of pro-slavery thugs into raids and massacres of innocent civilians and surrendered Union soldiers. Those of his followers – teenagers for the most part – who did not die violently during the war died violently after it: The most celebrated alumnus was Jesse James, who learned to kill in Quantrill’s service.

There really is a fan club for every Civil War personality at this point, but the hero worship in evidence here is, I feel, a bit stomach-churning. Here, the vague “defender of Missouri” tag overrides Quantrill’s contribution to cold-blooded massacres.

But then, maybe I’m expecting too much from a site adorned with Stars and Bars, animated GIFs, and a FAQ that begins with Where is Quantrill buried at? Lost causes die hard.

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