Series II, Volume 3, p. 430
Headquarters Mountain Department
Wheeling, Va., April 7, 1862.
Hon. E. M. Stanton, Secretary of War.
Sir: I have the honor to report that on the 4th day of April I ordered the arrest of a man calling himself Alfred Beckley and representing that he has been a brigadier-general in the Confederate service and bearing arms against the Union. It is represented that he has recently returned to his home in Weston, Va., with the determination to remain there quietly and not again to join his command in the Confederate Army. He has been arrested and I will cause him to be committed to the military prison at Camp Chase, there to remain in custody to await the orders of the War Department. I have to add that there is a strong feeling of opposition among the citizens of Western Virginia to the return among them of men like this man Beckley who left their homes to join in this rebellion. They represent that their presence is attended with mischievous consequences to the peace of the neighborhood, and that the most of them engage as soon as they return in forming guerrilla parties to destroy and otherwise injure the property of Union men and murder and likewise inflict injury upon their persons. I find this feeling far more widespread and serious than I was led to suppose it was when I took command of this department.
I have taken these steps at the instance and with the sanction of the Governor who gave me much of the information on which I have acted. I have also directed to be arrested and committed to Camp Chase Robert W. Clarkson, J. W. D. Clarkson and Alex. T. Laidly, who have refused to take the oath of allegiance and who are seeking to get through our lines into the enemy’s lines.
Awaiting your orders, I am, respectfully,
J. C. Fremont,
Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood: April 1862