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Proceedings of the
Second Session of the
Second Wheeling Convention

August 10, 1861

The Convention assembled at the regular hour.

Prayer by Rev. J. M. Phelps, of the M. E. Church.

Mr. VAN WINKLE inquired if the resolution of the gentleman from Marshall, pending when the Convention adjourned yesterday, was the business in order.

The President stated that the resolution had been withdrawn.

Mr. VAN WINKLE then desired to report some ordinances from the Committee on Business.

Mr. WEST said the Committee on a Division of the State was prepared to report. He wished the report to be received and read, so that if there should be any substitutes offered they could be offered at once, and all be printed and come up for consideration at the same time.

The President said there was a question of privilege for the Convention to decide upon. A gentleman was here claiming a seat, and it was proper that the case should be decided upon before any important vote came up. The Committee on Credentials had reported adversely on his claims and the report laid on the table. This matter took precedence.

The Secretary read the report of the Committee on Credentials reporting adversely upon the claims of Jonathan Roberts, of Fairfax county, to a seat in the Convention.

Mr. HAWXHURST moved that the report of the Committee be disagreed to.

Mr. HOOTON, on that question, demanded the yeas and nays and the demand was sustained.

Quite a lengthy discussion ensued upon the claims of Mr. Roberts to a seat, and the whole subject was thoroughly ventilated.

At length Mr. Stewart demanded the previous question, which was taken by yeas and nays, and resulted - yeas 33, nays 39.

So the motion to disagree with the adverse report of the Committee was not agreed to.

Mr. FROST moved to lay the report upon the table.

The motion was lost.

The question on concurring in the report recurring, it was put and decided in the affirmative.

So the Convention refused to admit Mr. Roberts to a seat.

Mr. LAMB offered the following resolution:

Resolved, That the Secretary procure, if practicable, a file of the papers and proceedings of this Convention, the papers and proceedings of the Convention which assembled in the city of Wheeling on the 13th of May last, together with the papers and proceedings of the Central and other Committees thereby appointed.>

Mr. CATHER the following:

Whereas, a portion of the people of the Southern States, in violation of their constitutional obligations, have attempted a dissolution of this Union and have thus precipitated the country into civil war; therefore,

Resolved, That the action of Congress, in voting men and money to suppress the rebellion and preserve the Union, receives the hearty approval of this Convention.

Mr. JOHNSON the following:

Resolved, That the Committee on Business inquire into the expediency of reporting an ordinance providing for the repair of State arms.

Mr. FROST the following:

Resolved, That the Committee on Business inquire whether any additional legislation is required to give efficiency to an act passed at the late session of the General Assembly, entitled "An act to prevent offences against the Commonwealth, and provide for the organization of patrols during the war," and that they report by ordinance or otherwise.

Mr. POLSLEY the following:

Resolved, That the Committee on Business be instructed to prepare and report an ordinance for the immediate and thorough re-organization of the militia, and for the more frequent and regular training of the same.

Mr. FARNSWORTH the following:

Resolved, That the Committee on Business be instructed to inquire into the expediency of appointing collectors on the Clarksburg, Buckhannon and French Creek Turnpike, and the Staunton and Parkersburg Turnpike, and the receiving of the tolls already collected; and making some provision for the repairing of the said roads, which are becoming in bad repair by the increased use of the roads by the U. S. troops.

All of which were adopted.

Mr. FAST offered the following:

Resolved, That the Committee on Business inquire into the expediency of changing the name of the county of Wise to that of Douglas or some other name more honorable than that of Wise. [Laughter.]

FONTAIN SMITH moved to lay it upon the table.

The motion was rejected, and the resolution adopted.

Mr. RITCHIE offered the following:

Resolved, That we are unalterably opposed to any compromise with the rebels, short of laying down their arms and returning to their allegiance to the United States Government; and that we will hold all who aid and abet any such compromise, as enemies not only to the government of our fathers, but as enemies to human liberty throughout the world.

Resolved, That we will aid the Administration at Washington in suppressing the rebellion with all our powers, both morally and physically, and studiously guard against all acts and doings that would militate in the least degree against the Union cause or embarrass the Administration in putting down the rebellion.

Laid upon the table and ordered to be printed.

Mr. CRANE moved the reading of the report of the Committee on a Division of the State.

The report, being an ordinance providing for a division of the State and the erection of a new State, was read.

After a good deal of parley, the rule was suspended to allow a number of substitutes for the ordinance to be offered.

The following gentlemen offered substitutes: Messrs. Dorsey, Kramer, Burley, Farnsworth, Zinn, Brown, Martin of Wetzel, and Flesher.

The ordinance and all the substitutes, together with a minority report offered by Mr. Johnson, were ordered to be printed, and upon motion of Mr. Paxton, were made the special order for Tuesday at 10 o'clock, and to continue the order each day until disposed of.

Mr. VAN WINKLE, from the Committee on business, reported ordinances with the following titles, which were laid on the table and ordered to be printed:

An ordinance in regard to the collection of the public revenue.

An ordinance ascertaining and declaring in what cases offices are vacated under the Declaration of June, 1861.

An ordinance providing for the punishment of certain offences.

The Convention then adjourned to Monday.

August 6
August 7
August 8
August 9
August 10
August 12
August 13
August 14
August 15
August 16
August 17
August 19
August 20
August 21

Chapter Nine: Second Session of the Second Wheeling Convention

A State of Convenience

West Virginia Archives and History