November 3, 1864
We are informed by the arrival of last evening’s train on the Baltimore road, that some robbers, said to be guerrillas, made their appearance Tuesday night at Burton on the road, and robbed the Post Office and store kept by John Clark, stripping him of five hundred dollars worth of goods, mostly clothing, about all he had. The next morning there was great excitement in the neighborhood and the people gathered at Burton from the surrounding vicinity, and were full of talk and conjecture, as well as a indignation. A man by the name of Isaac Morford gave vent as it was interpreted, to his satisfaction over what had been done by hurrahing for McClellan and Pendleton. A soldier named Enoch Doud, who was present, took up the taunt supposed to be offered, and after a very few words shot Morford dead on the spot. No sooner was this done than a son of Morford’s rushed into the crowd and drew a pistol on the solider, and the soldier made at him with charged bayonet, striking Morford slightly, just behind the ear, not inflicting a serious wound however. – Just as Morford was struck he fired his pitol, and the shot took effect in the soldier’s breast, inflicting a wound supposed to be mortal. A brother of the soldier came up soon after, and seeing what had been done armed himself and went in search of Morford, but at last accounts had not found him. It is feared that more blood may be shed before the affair is done with.
Such occurrences are lamentable indeed. All good citizens should use their utmost endeavor to prevent them. The spirit of violence as exhibited in this affair, and the recent disorders at Washington, Pa., show to what an extreme the passions of men will lead them these times. Human life apparently is held in a cheap estimate, the weapons of death on very slight provoand men do not shudder at the idea of using caution. Public sentiment concerns itself far too little in vindicating law and order. There is a disposition to divide off and take sides politically in every such occurrence now. Such a disposition simply tends to demoralize the natural and wholesome horror for bloody misdeeds which should prevail in every community, and without which society is put at the mercy of an element always ready to be encouraged into brutal demonstrations.
Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood: November 1864