From Morgan County.
Sir John’s Run, W.V., July 8, 1864.
Senator Bechtol, Robert Finn, Prosecuting Attorney, and T.M. Shives, Esq., who were captured by a band of Imboden’s men under O’Ferrell, on the 19th of March last, at Bath, have been released on parole, and arrived home. Delegate Wheat, one of the captured party, was also released and is in Washington.
On Tuesday, July 5th, the rebel Gen. Smith entered Bath with 2000 men, and remained for two days. Every Union house was pillaged, and the rebels carried away all clothing they could lay their hands on. Marauding parties scoured the county and carried away a large number of horses. The clerk’s office at Bath was broken into and most of the county records destroyed.
On Wednesday the rebel chieftain O’Ferrell, with about 300 men, marched to this place for the purpose of destroying the railroad property. He was opposed by Capt. Dean Co. K, 153d Ohio, and fifty men, who were stationed in their rifle pits on the Maryland side. The rebels succeeded in burning the telegraph office, and made an effort to burn the place but were prevented by the gallant Ohioans, whose well directed shots brought down the rebel torch-bearers. After the fight had progressed for four hours, a train with an iron clad car attached to it, came in and the rebels under the impression that it was a train loaded with Government stores, rushed down the bill pell mell, to capture it. As they reached it they received a broadside and hastily retreated swearing that a “d----d old rail car shot at them.” They were pursued by our troops and left the county of Morgan in a hurry.
O’Ferrell was elected Clerk of Morgan County when but eighteen years old and an orphan, dependent on his own exertions for a support. A generous people whose sympathies were enlisted in his behalf and almost for the first time in history elected to a responsible office, a mere boy, are now being repaid for their disinterested kindness, by being robbed of their horses and driven from their home to seek refuge in the mountains.
Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood: July 1864