April 28, 1863
In view of the danger which now appears to threaten Western Virginia and the Baltimore and Ohio railroad from an invasion of a considerable number of the enemy, at Oakland, Beverly and other points, a meeting of the officers of the 24th Brigade was held yesterday afternoon at the Court House.
The roll of the two regiments was called when Gen. Wheat laid before the board three telegraphic received during Sunday and Sunday night, from Maj. Gen. Robert C. Schenck, commanding this department. In the first dispatch Gen. Schenck stated that he had the authority of Gov. Peirpont for ordering Gen. Wheat to call out the 24th Brigade, but he did not then see any necessity for it. The next dispatch was an order calling out the militia, in which Gen. Wheat was instructed to report his advance to Col. Wilkinson, at Grafton. The third and last dispatch an additional order instructing Gen. Wheat to bring howitzers with him.
Gen. Wheat said that he had informed General Schenck that the brigade was not equipped, and therefore not in condition to move immediately, and this his object in calling the meeting, was to advise with the officers as to what was best, to be done. He hoped to have the active co-operation of every officer of the brigade, that its members might maintain their integrity and deserve the confidence which the Government seemed to place in those composing it.
Several officers stated that they were authorized to say that the men composing the brigade were ready and willing to respond to any order that might be issued.
In answer to the question whether there was any power to compel all men, whether enrolled or not, to turn out, Gen. Wheat said there was no question as to the power, but he thought that every true man in the city would willingly respond to the order. Otherwise they could be compelled to take the ranks.
After a short consultation, Gen. Wheat decided to issue an order, calling out the 24th brigade for parade, this morning at 10 o’clock. In the meantime he said he would make arrangements towards supplying the men with arms.
There were a great many rumors afloat in the city during yesterday, and there was considerable excitement and stir among the people, and particularly the militia men.
Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood: April 1863