Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood
March 14, 1863

Wheeling Intelligencer
March 20, 1863

New State Meeting at St. Marys.

St. Marys, March 14, 1863.

Editors Intelligencer:

Early on the morning of the 14th, the Butternuts began to swarm in town like flies around a molasses barrel - big and little, old and young, learned and unlearned, of all grades and complexion, from every hook, nook, and crook of the county, came in to hear the notorious king Sherrard. As the noble Eagle blowed her bugle for our landing, such a rush of Butternuts to welcome their favorite Clemens, I never before witnessed. Some with telescopes, others with microscopes in hand, to get a peep at their so called savior. But as the boat came gently to, no Clemens was there. Then indeed the Butternuts became furious. They would curse and damn the New State men, swearing most bitterly, that they would yet have revenge, and sure enough they did with king alcohol get much the better of them.

It was then announced that there would be a New State meeting at the Court House at 6 o'clock, p. m. When the hour arrived, the meeting was called to order, and Joseph Hubbs, was elected President and C. W. Smith, Secretary. After a few well timed remarks by J. A. Hutchison, Esq., he then introduced Rathbone Van Winkle, Esq., of Parkersburgh, who although young in years, met the objections and schemes of the oldest of the Butternuts so successfully on every point that they were so indignant because they were so clearly shown up that they went away determined not to go to the election at all.

Mr. Van Winkle first took up the subject of Congressional dictation, and made it clear to every candid mind, that it was almost the uniform practice of Congress, as in the case of Maine, Michigan, Wisconsin, Kansas and Kentucky. He next noticed their objection to the Willey bill, and clearly showed that instead of it making Virginia a free negro colony, that in connection with the following section of the Constitution it not only prohibited the free negro from coming into the State but actually prohibited those that are made free by the Constitution from remaining in the State more than one year after they are freed. He then took up the benefits that the State will confer on every class of men and particularly the poor man, by showing the great decrease of state tax, the inducements that are set before the capitalist to come into the State to develop the mineral resources of our mountains, thereby giving labor to the working man and by competition among capitalists increase the wages of labor. And with three cheers for the speaker and three cheers for the new State, the meeting adjourned.

One Present.

Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood: March 1863

West Virginia Archives and History