The Tragic Fate of Guyandotte
By Joe Geiger, Jr.
In 1861, western Virginia was the scene of a fierce struggle which magnified the bitterly divided sympathies of its populace. In effect, this area of Virginia experienced its own civil war, and within two years, the great conflict engulfing the United States led to the formation of the new state of West Virginia. By the fall of 1861, Union forces had gained tenuous control over most of this region, although Confederate cavalry raids were frequent and discouraging to Union supporters. One such raid, carried out on November 10, 1861, targeted the town of Guyandotte, Virginia, which served as the hostile host of a Union recruit camp. While successful, this action precipitated the burning of the town by Union troops and sympathizers in one of the Civil War's early acts of retaliatory destruction. These events foreshadowed the increasingly harsh nature of the Civil War, reflecting the hardships suffered by the soldiers of both sides, as well as the civilian population and local communities. Guyandotte's fate was a result of the residents' suspected collaboration with the Confederate raiders and the town's established reputation as a "hot bed of secession."
By the middle of the nineteenth century, Guyandotte was a small, bustling port on the Ohio River. Founded in 1810 at the confluence of the Ohio and Guyandotte rivers in Cabell County, the town featured a number of profitable businesses including the Buffington Mill, reportedly the largest flour mill on the Ohio River between Cincinnati and Pittsburgh.1 Guyandotte hosted many river travelers and a road, built in the early 1830s, connected the town with the James River and Kanawha Turnpike at Barboursville, the county seat. To boost commerce, locks and dams were built along the Guyandotte River in the early 1850s, enabling navigation southward into the Guyandotte Valley.2 The Guyandotte Herald predicted continued growth for the town, stating that "once the Guyandotte is fairly opened, the increase of business will be beyond conception."3
In 1857, Eli Thayer, a United States congressman from Massachusetts, unveiled his plans for founding a colony in the region. Thayer, a staunch abolitionist, firmly believed that the colony's labor force would be provided by organized emigration and lead to the elimination of slavery. Following a successful venture in Kansas during the tumultuous mid-1850s, Thayer set his sights on Virginia, the country's most prominent slave state. This small-scaled colonization plan exemplified the bitter divisiveness which led the country inevitably toward armed conflict. While many Virginians were hostile toward his plans, others, especially those from the less prosperous western part of the state where slavery was not as important, welcomed Thayer and the influx of labor and capital promised by his venture.4
After a brief visit to the area in May 1857, Thayer selected a site ten miles west of Guyandotte for his fledgling community, which he named Ceredo. On July 25, he returned to address a town meeting in Guyandotte. Thayer assured local citizens that his primary objective was to make a profit and that he had no intention of violating state laws regarding slavery. The Guyandotte audience supported Thayer's plans with resolutions welcoming the new colony.5
While the Northern press applauded the reception given Thayer, a tremendous outcry arose from the South condemning Guyandotte's citizens as "yankee speculators" and "anti-Virginians." In response to the criticism, another meeting was held in Guyandotte on the afternoon of August 26, attended by the town's vocal anti-Thayer faction. The resolutons passed at this meeting vowed to extinguish any attempts to abolish slavery and declared steadfast loyalty to Virginia. Congressman Albert Gallatin Jenkins, who had recently visited the budding community, gave a stirring speech denouncing Thayer and Ceredo. Jenkins, a Cabell County native, also called upon Virginia Governor Henry Wise to intervene, but Wise refused to become involved in the controversy.6
Regional tension was exacerbated as a result of John Brown's raid on Harpers Ferry, which strengthened support for secession in Guyandotte. Although few of the town's citizens were slaveholders, they protested against Northern sympathy for Brown and vowed "to repel at all hazards" any further encroachment upon their right as Virginians to own slaves.7 Local supporters of the newly formed Confederacy rejoiced when Virginia seceded from the Union on April 17, 1861. William McComas, the Cabell County delegate to the convention which decided the fate of the Old Dominion, voted against secession, as would a majority of the county's voters one month later. The Wheeling Daily Intelligencer declared the county's vote misleading, however, and noted that Guyandotte in particular was a "hot bed of secession." The town voted to secede, reportedly the only town along the Ohio River to do so, and the Virginia state flag was boldly displayed.8
A meeting held in Guyandotte on April 20 was attended by several local militia companies and a large number of county residents. A newly sewn state flag was raised by two of the town's oldest citizens "amid the enthusiastic applause of the multitude and the rejoicing of the ladies, a large number of whom were present."9 One of many speeches given that day was interrupted by the arrival of a steamer, which brought the official news of Virginia's break with the Union. The already upbeat mood turned jubilant, and salutes were fired to the Confederacy and to President Jefferson Davis. Albert Jenkins, who had given up his congressional seat, arrived and led some of the volunteer companies to his farm at Greenbottom, where they began drilling in preparation for war. Known as the Border Rangers, these local men soon joined a Confederate force at Camp Tompkins in the Kanawha Valley.10
Despite the troops' departure, Confederate sympathy remained rampant in Cabell County, especially in Guyandotte. Property and livestock were stolen from Union sympathizers and some were forced to flee into Ohio.11 On May 25, when merchandise bound for a Guyandotte resident was seized as contraband in Proctorville, Ohio, some of Guyandotte's citizens threatened to cross the Ohio River and take the goods by force. Nearly two hundred members of the local Ohio Home Guard gathered to repel any "invasion." Responding to fears expressed by some Guyandotte citizens, the Ironton Register stated that "if the people of Guyandotte keep that traitor flag down, and attend to their own affairs, they need not be at all afraid of trouble from loyal citizens of the Government."12 Although no fighting occurred and tempers cooled, Guyandotte's reputation was further blemished in the eyes of Union supporters.
In July 1861, a Union regiment, the Second Kentucky Infantry, was ordered to Guyandotte as a result of the Border Rangers' seizure of a steamboat near Greenbottom. Shortly after the arrival of Union troops on July 11, several of Guyandotte's citizens took the oath of allegiance and Union flags were prominently displayed. A uniformed Home Guard unit rowed across the river accompanied by an elderly female color-bearer, Mrs. Caroline White. White, a Union supporter from Guyandotte who had fled to Ohio, presented a flag to one of the Union companies and gave them her blessing, to which the soldiers replied with "vociferous cheers."13 After dispersing local militia in a brief fight at Barboursville on July 13, however, the Second Kentucky moved into the Kanawha Valley and civil chaos in the county resumed unchecked.
To counter the aggressive Confederate sympathizers, Union authorities initiated the formation of local Union regiments. In Ceredo, threats of destruction issued by area secessionists led the townspeople to form the Fifth Virginia Infantry. Later in the year, Kellian V. Whaley, who had filled the congressional seat vacated by Albert Jenkins, was authorized to form another Union regiment, the Ninth Virginia Infantry. Whaley began raising troops in Ceredo, but in late October the regiment's recruit camp was moved to Guyandotte, a step which must have horrified the town's Confederate supporters.14 Nearly one hundred and fifty troops were stationed in Guyandotte, but they were untrained recruits who had not yet been mustered into service. Sickness, particularly measles, was prevalent in the camp. The regimental surgeon recorded that twenty men were on furlough and eighteen others were hospitalized. Colonel John Zeigler, who commanded the Fifth Virginia, lent Whaley about thirty-five cavalrymen, but their commanding officer refused to allow his troopers to patrol outside the town, thereby rendering them ineffectual. The head of the cavalry detachment, Lieutenant William E. Feazel, declared, "I did not come here to scout, but to recruit my horses and get them shod." The lack of reconnaissance left the town open to an attack, a fatal mistake exploited by the Confederates.15
In the first week of November, Confederate General John B. Floyd ordered a cavalry force to "proceed in the direction of the Ohio River, and to strike the enemy a blow. . . ."16 The raid was led by Colonel John Clarkson, whose force numbered about seven hundred horsemen from the Fifth and Eighth Virginia Cavalry regiments, the latter led by Colonel Albert Jenkins. Clarkson's cavalry departed from Camp Dickerson in Fayette County on November 4 and struggled through the rugged mountain wilderness, reaching the outskirts of Barboursville at sunset on November 10. The Confederate cavalry charged into town at full speed, capturing several Union sympathizers before crossing the Mud River and moving toward Guyandotte.17
It is uncertain when Guyandotte was chosen as the target of the Confederate raid. In fact, Ceredo may have been the original destination. Seven companies of the Ceredo-based Fifth Virginia had been ordered to the Kanawha Valley, leaving only a small Union force to guard the town. Somewhere along the march, however, the decision to attack Guyandotte was made and the fate of the Federal recruits was sealed. It is quite possible that a few of the town's citizens who had sons serving under Colonel Albert Jenkins had gotten word to their boys that a Union regiment was forming in the town. This may have infuriated the proud Border Rangers and sparked cries for action. The Border Rangers, now Company E of the Eighth Virginia, were certainly elated at the thought of returning to Guyandotte. Corporal James D. Sedinger, a native of the town, recalled, "the boys were all happy then. We were going home for the first time since the spring."18
As Clarkson's column approached Guyandotte, orders were issued for the assault. The Border Rangers were to seize the suspension bridge which spanned the Guyandotte River, preventing escape to the west, while a detachment led by Major Henry Fitzhugh moved to the east end of Guyandotte to complete the encirclement. The remaining Confederate cavalry penetrated the center of town to attack and annihilate the small Union force.19
Guyandotte was deceptively peaceful on Sunday night, November 10, 1861. Some of the recruits were returning home from worship services while others were visiting with friends or simply relaxing, unaware of the dramatic events about to unfold. The silence was shattered as the Confederates raced into town unopposed. A Union picket guarding a small bridge just outside the town had seen their approach, but he was so stunned by the sudden appearance of the enemy that he failed to fire a warning shot. The Border Rangers, headed by Captain James Corns, met another picket as they stormed the suspension bridge. Standing firmly in harm's way, the Union soldier shot and killed one of the Border Rangers before being hit by return fire. Sedinger noted, "why he did not throw down and surrender was always a mystery to us. He was a small red headed man -- would weigh about one hundred and forty pounds." The Confederate company dismounted on the west side of the bridge as the remainder of Clarkson's force began its attack.20
When the first shots rang out, the Union soldiers dashed into the streets, curious as to the source of the commotion. The Ninth's young drummer boy began sounding the alarm, but his instrument was pierced by a Confederate bullet. By the time the recruits realized they were under attack, it was too late. Many were cut off from their Enfield rifles and were unable to resist as the Confederate cavalry raced through the town hunting down Union troops and sympathizers. Some tried to flee across the suspension bridge but were cut down by the Border Rangers, who had secured this escape route.21
Others who attempted to swim across the Guyandotte River were fired on by some of the town's Confederate supporters gathered along the riverbank. Several witnesses later described the murder of a Union recruit attempting to swim across the river by a former sheriff of Cabell County, Wilson B. Moore. Moore apparently persuaded the youth that he would not be harmed if he surrendered. When the recruit reached shore, Moore aimed his revolver at the Union man and "discharged its contents into his head, literally blowing his brains out, mutilating his head in a shocking manner."22
Major Whaley and a small portion of his command positioned themselves near the suspension bridge. Whaley decided to seek assistance and ordered Lieutenant William Wilson to take command of the tiny resistance force. Wilson wrote of his experience shortly after the battle: "We continued to fire for some time. I saw Sine fall. He said he was a dead man. I saw one little man bleeding at the mouth. He cursed and swore, but continued to load and fire. . . . He was grit to the bone -- no better soldier, when wounded, certain. About this time I was wounded and the enemy drew nearer. I gave the boys orders to leave, and every man to take care of himself."23
Meanwhile Whaley had made his way to the stables, seeking cavalry support to reopen an escape route across the bridge. To his dismay the major discovered that although the horses were saddled, no troopers could be found. He managed to round up a few Union recruits who continued to resist the Confederates' overwhelming numerical advantage. These Union soldiers fought bravely but they were steadily pushed back and forced to make a final stand around the Forest Hotel. Suddenly Captain Henry Clay Pate, who had four years earlier been on the losing end of a battle with John Brown in "Bleeding Kansas," stormed forward with his Petersburg Rangers. This fierce charge overwhelmed the remaining defenders and ended the battle. Major Whaley's life was threatened when he refused to assist Pate in rounding up the scattered Union recruits, but Colonel Clarkson rode up and saved him, declaring, "he is a brave man, and I desin so to report him."24
Although Union armed resistance had been brief, the victorious Confederates spent the remainder of the night rounding up terrified recruits who were either attempting to flee the town or hiding in hope that the new day would bring relief. A tragic incident occurred in the Forest Hotel when Colonel Clarkson mistakenly shot and killed Confederate Captain Tom Huddleston, commander of Company I, Eighth Virginia Cavalry. Huddleston's death deeply affected his men. A trooper of the Confederate cavalry wrote, "I saw many of his old comrades near his dead body in tears, and others kissed his pale, tranquil face, which they will never see again."25
At least three Confederates were killed on the night of November 10 and ten others wounded. Despite later Northern reports of a "massacre," only ten Union recruits were killed, while at least ten more were wounded. One of the Federal casualties was Captain George B. Bailey, Whaley's second-in-command, who was shot in the chin and apparently drowned while attempting to swim across the Guyandotte River. Bailey had briefly attended the United States Military Academy; when he was expelled his position had been filled by his boyhood friend, Ulysses Grant. Ninety-eight Union troops and sympathizers were taken prisoner by the Confederate cavalry. They were assisted by a number of Guyandotte's Confederate supporters, who used the occasion to settle grudges against their fellow townspeople who had sided with the North.26
An incident which typified the bitter divisiveness in Cabell County was the murder of Achilles Fuller, a Union supporter, on November 10. Earlier in the year Fuller had killed Henry Shelton, a Confederate supporter whose sons served in the Confederate cavalry. On the evening of the raid on Guyandotte, Private George Shelton and a few of his comrades from the Eighth Virginia Cavalry split off from the Confederate column at Barboursville and rode to the Fuller home, where Achilles Fuller was discovered and immediately murdered.27
Although it remains difficult to assess the extent of Guyandotte's citizens's involvement in the raid, there is little doubt that many were exhilarated by the sudden reversal of power. Contemporary accounts which accused several local citizens of shooting at the fleeing Union recruits are too prevalent and similar to be entirely without merit. The claim that residents of Guyandotte had foreknowledge of the raid and had furnished intelligence to the Confederate cavalry may have been true; however, the attack was so sudden, unexpected, and overwhelming that success was inevitable.28
On the morning of November 11, the Confederates tied their prisoners in pairs with rope readily supplied by a Guyandotte merchant.29 A quarter-inch rope was then used to bind each pair to the next, until all were tied together. As they were herded out of Guyandotte, the captured Union soldiers and citizens were subjected to verbal abuse by the town's women, many of whom were wearing their "secession aprons."30 The march commenced at a run as the column proceeded south along the Guyandotte River. The pace was so severe that Major Whaley requested he and his men be shot rather than forced to endure such a torturous march. Whaley made a daring escape at Chapmanville, but the remaining prisoners were subjected to further hardships until the column reached Newbern, Virginia, where the captured soldiers and citizens were force into rail cars which transported them on to several prisons in Richmond. During the grueling march to Newbern, several secessionist refugees from Guyandotte heckled and threatened the Union prisoners. Some also testified against their release, although other former Guyandotte residents living in Richmond worked on their behalf and provided assistance for their return to western Virginia.31
As the triumphant Confederates withdrew from Guyandotte with their prisoners in tow, the steamer SS Boston appeared, moving slowly up the Ohio River. Aboard were approximately two hundred Union soldiers from the Fifth Virginia Infantry, who had advanced from their camp in Ceredo after learning of the attack. When shots were fired at the steamboat by the rearguard of the Confederate column, a small two-pounder aboard the SS Boston responded, "sending a ball through a rebel's brick house." The boat then veered to the Ohio side of the river and landed near Proctorville. Here an unruly, frightened mob of Ohio Home Guards had gathered to defend the town. These men and boys, anxious and excited, boarded the SS Boston, which took them across the river toward Guyandotte. As the steamer neared the Virginia shore, two men were spied along the riverbank waving white flags. Although J. C. Wheeler, the adjutant of the Ninth Virginia, stated in his report that these were "hypocritical secession citizens," they were in fact Union supporters, who were attempting to convince the citizens of Proctorville to halt their random firing into Guyandotte. The SS Boston landed about one mile above the town near the home of Robert Stewart, a prominent secessionist. A rumor that fleeing Union recruits had been fired on by inhabitants of the home stirred the men into a frenzy and the dwelling was quickly burned.32
The Union men then marched into Guyandotte, where they found a number of dead and wounded comrades and heard reports citing collaboration between some of the townspeople and the Confederate cavalry. The rage of the gathered Union troops and sympathizers now boiled over. Most accounts of the incident accuse Colonel John Zeigler of issuing orders to burn Guyandotte. Whether or not orders were given is irrelevant, since according to one observer, "three regiments would not have prevented them from burning the town."33
The business section of Guyandotte was completely gutted, purportedly to prevent the Confederates from returning for supplies. The Buffington Mill was burned, as was the Forest Hotel. Even churches were not immune from the torch. The Guyandotte Baptist Church was burned after two unsuccessful attempts when Union soldiers tore off the shutters and stuffed them with straw before setting them alight in the church belfry. The Guyandotte Methodist Episcopal Church, South may also have been burned.34
Many houses were set ablaze, with special attention given to the town's most prominent secessionists. Women and children were forced into the streets, and some of the residents reportedly had to leap out of windows to escape the flames. Union reports later declared that no homes belonging to Union supporters were torched. One eyewitness, however, claimed that the first home to be burned belonged to a Union man, as were the majority of the residences consumed by fire. One example typifies the random destruction inflicted upon Guyandotte. Mrs. Charlotte Douthit, the wife of a prosperous Guyandotte merchant, had witnessed the seizure of her husband and eldest son by Confederate troops in the aftermath of the raid. On the morning of November 11, Union troops appeared at Mrs. Douthit's front door and warned her to remove any valuables from the house, as they had orders to burn it. Mrs. Douthit pleaded with the soldiers and told of her distressing sacrifices, but the soldiers burned the Douthit home and a brick storage building filled with wheat.35 A few homes were saved by their owners, who doused the flames following the departure of the Uion troops. Another home was saved by the determination of the woman of the house, Mrs. Mary Carroll. Mrs. Carroll barricaded her family in the home and ignored the soldiers' admonitions to get out. Her iron will prevailed as the troops grudgingly moved on.36
Later in the day Union Colonel William Bolles of the Second Virginia Cavalry arrived in Guyandotte aboard a steamboat. Upon seeing the wanton destruction, he immediately sought out Colonel Zeigler and implored him to bring his troops under control. When Zeigler declared that he could not subdue his men, Bolles rode through the streets threatening the Union troops, who were finally persuaded to stop the devastation. Before departing from Guyandotte, Colonel Zeigler's troops arrested sixteen local citizens for their role in the battle. These men were immediately shipped off to Camp Chase Prison in Columbus, Ohio.37
The Confederate raid on Guyandotte, exaggerated as a "massacre" by the Northern press, shocked and angered Union supporters. Shortly after the news reached the northern panhandle town of Moundsville, the streets filled with "excited men and women" who assaulted four secessionists and jailed three while shouting, "Guyandotte must and shall be revenged." A committee of Union men went to the homes of other secessionists and ordered them to leave town. The raid also led many Northerners to re-evaluate the nature of the war: "One thing is becoming more and more evident each day, both to patriots and traitors. And that is, that this rebellion will be put down at whatever cost of blood and treasure. The time for dallying and temporising with traitors is gone . . . rigid retribution is now to be the policy."38 Guyandotte's fate was a chilling portent of the devastation that would be increasingly levied not only on the soldiers fighting the war but also on the civilian population supporting it, particularly in the South.
There was little sympathy in the North for the citizens of Guyandotte. Although the participation of some of the townspeople in the Confederate raid was undoubtedly a factor in its destruction, Guyandotte's notoriety was also an essential element. The Ironton Register commented: "Guyandotte's machinations hath kept the border in constant alarm; its people hath sown to the wind, and already reaped the whirlwind." Another northern paper, the Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, was even more blunt in its unconcealed glee at the town's fate: "Guyandotte . . . has always had the reputation of being the `ornaryest' place on the Ohio River." After comparing the town to Vicksburg, the paper added that Guyandotte "ought to have been burned two or three years ago."39
The raid instilled a fear in Union supporters living in this border region which remained throughout the war. This fear spurred Union authorities to maintain troops in Guyandotte during much of the next four years. Ironically, the county seat was moved to Guyandotte in 1863 because it was deemed more secure than Barboursville. Although Confederate cavalry returned to Cabell County on several more occasions, their success at Guyandotte was not repeated. Following the Confederacy's defeat in 1865, soldiers from both sides returned home to rebuild their lives.
Guyandotte also rebuilt and before long the business section was thriving once again. By 1872, more than fifty businesses were operating in the community, including six legal firms, a photograph gallery, a jewelry store, a woolen factory, a book and stationary store, four hotels, and five saloons. local newspaper estimated that one thousand people resided in Guyandotte and described the citizens as "social, hospitable, and generous."40
The town's growth, however, was adversely affected by the emergence of the neighboring city of Huntington, formed in 1871 to serve as the terminus for the Chesapeake & Ohio (C&O) Railroad. Legend has it that the new city was built by C&O company president Collis P. Huntington after he was arrested in Guyandotte for riding his horse on the sidewalk. Regardless of the reason, his decision had a fateful effect, as the city named for him soon eclipsed and eventually incorporated the historic town of Guyandotte.41
1. "Interview with Henry Clay Everett," 5, in F. B. Lambert Collection, Special Collections, James E. Morrow Library, Marshall University, Huntington, hereafter referred to as Lambert Coll., Marshall Special Collections. Although Guyandotte was selected as the county seat when Cabell County was formed in 1809, the town was not officially established until the following year. The county seat was moved to Barboursville in 1814.
2. George Selden Wallace, Cabell County Annals and Families (Richmond: Garrett & Massie, 1935), 120; Leland R. Johnson, An Illustrated History of the Huntington District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 1754-1974 (Washington, DC: GPO, 1977), 57-59.
3. Guyandotte Herald, 2 February 1855, in Lambert Coll., Marshall Special Collections.
4. Otis J. Rice, "Eli Thayer and the Friendly Invasion of Virginia," Journal of Southern History 37(November 1971): 575-96. See Elizabeth Knight McClintic, "Ceredo: An Experiment In Colonization," (Masters thesis, Harvard-Radcliffe, 1937).
5. Kanawha Valley Star, 8 September 1857. See also McClintic, "Ceredo," 21.
6. Kanawha Valley Star, 1 and 8 September 1857; McClintic, "Ceredo," 23-24.
7. Granville Parker, The Formation of the State of West Virginia (Wellsburg: Glass and Son, 1875), 1-2. Emphasis in original.
8. Wallace, Cabell County Annals, 34. Wallace recorded that the citizens of Cabell County "gave a majority of 650 against secession."
9. Kanawha Valley Star, 30 April 1861.
10. James D. Sedinger, "Diary of a Border Ranger," 1, West Virginia State Archives, Charleston, hereafter referred to as WVSA. Sedinger's diary was published as "The War-Time Reminiscences of James D. Sedinger, Company E, 8th Virginia Cavalry (Border Rangers)," West Virginia History (1992): 55-78. See also Jack L. Dickinson, 8th Virginia Cavalry (Lynchburg: H. E. Howard, Inc., 1986). The Border Rangers soon became Company E of the Eighth Virginia Cavalry Regiment.
11. Among the refugees were John S. Witcher and Granville Parker, both of whom became active in West Virginia politics and government. Witcher also commanded the Third West Virginia Cavalry Regiment during the war, rising to the rank of brevet brigadier general. See the John S. Witcher Papers, Series I, Folder 13, Boyd B. Stutler Collection, WVSA. See also Parker, Formation of West Virginia, 36-37.
12.Ironton Register, 6 June 1861.
13. Cincinnati Daily Gazette, 13 July 1861.
14. Ohio citizens were reluctant to join the Ninth Virginia after the Ironton Register discouraged enlistment. In response, Whaley wrote to the paper in late October asking for volunteers and support. Ironton Register, 31 October 1861.
15. Ibid., 27 March and 10 April 1862. Dr. Jonathan Morris, surgeon of the Ninth Virginia, was taken prisoner at Guyandotte and his description of events was published in the Ironton Register after his release. According to Morris, Whaley actually threatened Feazel with a gun, but to no avail. In Feazel's defense, his detachment had been extremely active in another endeavor. They were still at Ceredo on November 8, having "posted the election notices in every precinct of Cabell [C]ounty, and in prosecution of that duty arrested 15 rebels, whom they transferred to Col. Piattƒs regiment, encamped at Mud Bridge." Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, 12 November 1861.
16. War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, Series I, Volume V, 288. This letter, from General John B. Floyd to J. P. Benjamin, is apparently the only Confederate correspondence regarding the raid on Guyandotte in the War of the Rebellion.
17. Richmond Dispatch, 2 December 1861, Rosanna Blake Collection, Marshall Special Collections. The author of this 14 November letter, identified as "H," was a Confederate soldier who participated in the raid on Guyandotte. His letter is perhaps the best Confederate account of this event.
18. In addition to the Federal troops at Guyandotte and Ceredo, five companies of the Thirty-fourth Ohio Volunteer Infantry were stationed at Mud Bridge, present-day Milton. On the morning of November 10, they learned that a large Confederate mounted force was advancing up the Guyandotte River. Uncertain of the Confederates' destination, the Union force at Mud Bridge spent the day constructing breastworks of logs and brush. They remained entrenched until the following morning when they learned of the raid on Guyandotte. Two companies were then dispatched to Barboursville, but the Confederate column with prisoners in tow had already passed through the village. Letters of William Ludwig, 14 November 1861, West Virginia and Regional History Collection, West Virginia University, Morgantown; Cincinnati Daily Gazette, 7 December 1861; Sedinger, "Diary of a Border Ranger," 5.
19. Richmond Dispatch, 2 December 1861.
20. Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, 6 December 1861; Sedinger, "Diary of a Border Ranger," 5. See also John W. Barbour, "The Fight At Guyandotte," in Lambert Coll., Marshall Special Collections. Barbour, a member of the Ninth Virginia, identified the Union picket as Pleasant Lunsford.
21. Sedinger, "Diary of a Border Ranger," 5; Ironton Register, 27 March 1862. Dr. Jonathan Morris recorded that during the battle he "dressed the hand of a small boy, who had been shot through the ball of the thumb." This was probably the drummer boy of the Ninth, who was not identified.
22. Barbour, "Fight At Guyandotte,"; J. H. Rouse, Horrible Massacre at Guyandotte (n. p., 1862), 11. Barbour identified the victim as James Lawhorn.
23. Ironton Register, 23 January 1862.
24. Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, 6 December 1861.
25. Richmond Dispatch, 2 December 1861.
26. Precise Confederate casualty figures are difficult to determine, since several of the companies which participated in the raid were subsequently attached to different regiments. The Eighth Virginia Cavalry alone lost three killed and at least five wounded. See Dickinson, 8th Virginia Cavalry. Union casualty estimates are more consistent. Dr. Jonathan Morris wrote that sixty-six of the prisoners were recruits of the 9th Virginia, while the remaining thirty-two were civilians. Ironton Register, 10 April 1862. Albert D. Richardson, A Personal History of Ulysses S Grant (Hartford, CT: American Publishing Company, 1968), 73-75.
27. Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, 15 November 1861; Ironton Register, 21 November 1861; "Achilles Fuller," in Lambert Coll., Marshall Special Collections; "Civil War Days Were Dark Days In Cabell County," Huntington Herald-Advertiser, 17 June 1934.
28. See Ironton Register, 21 November 1861; Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, 14 November 1861; Rouse, Horrible Massacre, 11.
29. Rouse, Horrible Massacre, 13. Rouse identified the merchant as S. M. E. Russell.
30. Ibid., 14; Ironton Register, 21 November 1861. These aprons were stitched to resemble the Virginia state flag. See Wallace, 332.
31. Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, 5 December 1861. According to this article, Whaley's request was made to Colonel Albert G. Jenkins. While nearly all of the civilian prisoners were released within a few months, the Union soldiersremained in Southern prisons as late as 1863. Rouse, Horrible Massacre, 31-54.
32. War of the Rebellion, Series I, Volume V, 412; Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, 26 November 1861; Ironton Register, 21 November 1861.
33. Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, 14 November 1861. Adjutant J. C. Wheeler attributed the origin of the town's destruction to "armed citizens from Ohio." War of the Rebellion, Series I, Volume V, 412.
34. Rev. Bryce W. Griffith and Everett Samuel Pierce, "History of the First Guyandotte Baptist Church" (typescript, n.d.), copy in possession of the author. In 1909, the Guyandotte Baptist Church was awarded $2,500 by the United States government for wartime damage. "A Brief History of the Guyandotte United Methodist Church, 1804-1986" (typescript, n.d.) and "History of the Guyandotte United Methodist Church" (typescript, n.d.), copies in possession of the author. While the former history, garnered from notes made by Mary Poindexter Hennen in 1928, states that "the building was either destroyed during the war or gradually fell into ruins," the latter claims that Union troops returned to Guyandotte a few days later and "burned more buildings, including the Southern Methodist Church which it had intended to burn in the first place." In 1905, this church also received compensation from the federal government.
35. Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, 26 November 1861; Wiatt Smith, ed., Guyandotte Centennial: 1810-1910 (Huntington: The Guyandotte Centennial and Cabell County Homecoming Association, 1910), 79-80.
36. The Carroll House, which was transported down the Ohio River, from Gallipolis, Ohio, in 1810, still stands today and is being restored by the Madie Carroll House Preservation Society.
37. Cincinnati Daily Gazette, 13 November 1861.
38. Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, 15, 16, and 20 November 1861. Another riot occurred in Fairmont at about the same time.
39. Ironton Register, 21 November 1861; Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, 13 November 1861.
40. Cabell County Press, 1 August 1872. In 1874, a Guyandotte newspaper reported that the population at that time was 1,500. The Democratic Banner, 9 April 1874.
41. Wallace, Cabell County Annals, 332-34; "Guyandotte: Death of Stage Line Hindered Old-Time Guyandotte Growth," Huntington Daily News Digest, 11 March 1953. In 1910, Guyandotte held a centennial celebration but one year later its citizens voted to become a part of Huntington, a proposal which had been defeated in 1909. See Wallace, Cabell County Annals, 336.
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