May 28, 1863
Encouraging Desertion. – Major Darr, the Provost Marshal, yesterday arrested a man named Wm. C. Kimberly, of South Wheeling, upon the charge of encouraging desertion. It appears that some time ago Mrs. Hannah M. Hervy, wrote a letter to her cousin John C. Briggs, of Co. C, 15th Virginia infantry, in which Kimberly also wrote a few lines, containing among other expressions, this sentence:
“I am glad to see you showing your patriotism by fighting for niggers and robbing lone women of what they have to eat. If you want to show your patriotism, lay down your arms and come home like a man should do, and let them that want’s to steal niggers, do so.”
We presume that Briggs, being a loyal man, handed the letter over to Lieut. John McCarthy, who sent it to Major Darr – Kimberly was held to bail in the sum of one thousand dollars to answer.
Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood: May 1863