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Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood
May 17, 1864


The Wheeling Daily Intelligencer
July 13, 1864

Circular from the Commissioner of Immigration for West Virginia.

Office of Com’r of Immigration for W.Va.
St. Clara Colony, Doddridge County,
17th May, 1864.

Mr. Augustus Pollock, Wheeling, W.Va:

Dear Sir – By virtue of an Act of our Legislature, passed on the 2d day of March last, the Governor has conferred upon me the appointment of “Commissioner of Immigration” for this State, and I have ever since been actively engaged in the discharge of the duties of my office defraying the expenses thereof thus far, out of my own private means.

In will be remembered that the said Act of the Legislature not only provides no compensation for the Commissioner, but contains not even an appropriation for the inevitable expenses of his office. When the subject was before our Legislature, it was expected that the cost of printing and distributing the description of our State, would be obtained out of the appropriation provided by Mr. Sherman’s bill for the encouragement of immigration, then before the United States Senate, and that the other expenses of our State Commissioner, such as the printing of cards, circulars and advertisements, here and a road, postage and travelling expenses would be made up by private subscription. Since then, however, Mr. Sherman’s bill was laid upon the table, and replaced by another one divested of the specific appropriation which our State had been expected to share, so that every item of expense arising under our Act remains to be met by private subscription.

It is estimated that 5000 copies of a pamphlet, descriptive of our State, with a map, would cost $500, and that an equal amount economically applied, would be sufficient to cover the expenses above mentioned; the President of the B. & O. Railroad having generously tendered to the Commission a free pass over all its branches until 20th July next, and intending no doubt to extend the privilege if necessary, I can hardly suppose that a sum so insignificant in proportion to the important results in contemplation, will not be promptly raised upon call. I therefore take the liberty to solicit your kind and zealous co-operation towards this object, with the request to present the annexed blank subscription list to your public spirited friends, and to such land owners, industrial firms and associations as may expect to be benefitted by the success of my agency, and to forward the proceeds as speedily as possibly to His Excellency, the Governor, who has the disposition of the funds under the law.

Most Respectfully Yours,

J.H. Diss Debar,
Commissioner of Immigration.


Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood: May 1864

West Virginia Archives and History