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Proceedings of the
Second Session of the
Second Wheeling Convention

August 21, 1861

The Convention met at four o'clock P. M.

Minutes read and approved.

Mr. BOREMAN, of Tyler, offered the following which was adopted:

Resolved, That a committee of three be appointed to wait upon the Governor, and inquire whether he has any communication to make to the Convention before its adjournment.

Messrs. Boreman, Smith of Marion, and Withers, were appointed said committee.

Mr. NEWMAN of Wirt, who had been absent, obtained general consent to vote upon the ordinance creating a new State. He voted nay.

Mr. VAN WINKLE, from the Committee of Revision, made their report, which was adopted.

Mr. WEST moved to take up the resolution offered some days ago by himself, providing for the next meeting of the next Legislature in Richmond.

Mr. CROTHERS suggested that it would not be exactly proper for citizens of Kanawha to meet in Richmond.

A vote was taken and the Convention refused to take up the resolution.

Mr. BARNS offered the following resolution of thanks, which was unanimously adopted:

Resolved, That the thanks of this Convention be and they are hereby tendered to the President of this body for the able and impartial manner in which he has discharged the duties of his position.

Mr. EVANS offered the following, which was also adopted:

Resolved, That this Convention take pleasure in acknowledging the satisfactory manner in which the Clerk and other officers of the Convention have discharged their respective duties.

Mr. WEST offered the following which was also adopted.

Resolved, That the thanks of this Convention are due and hereby tendered to the reverend Clergy who have opened our daily session with prayer.

After some time had elapsed in waiting for the return of the Committee,

Mr. CARLILE said he believed they had got about through their labors.

A member said the Committee had not yet returned.

Mr. CARLILE - Well, sir, we cannot wait here all night on the Committee. I have always found that when we have nothing to do, we are sure to do something we ought not to do. "Idleness is the parent of Vice," is a copy I used to write when a boy at school. I therefore move that this Convention do now adjourn.

Mr. WEST - It would certainly be a very unusual proceeding after having appointed a committee to wait upon the Governor, to adjourn before that committee returned.

The President reminded the gentlemen that a motion to adjourn could not be discussed.

Mr. CARLILE - I submitted it for that purpose, sir. I knew we would have to be discussing something while waiting here, and I thought this about as innocent a motion as we could discuss. [Laughter.]

The Committee at this juncture returned.

Mr. CATHER offered the following resolution, which was adopted:

Resolved, That the thanks of this body are due to the Reporters of the proceedings of this Convention.

The Committee reported that the Governor would shortly communicate to the Convention in person.

The Governor appeared in a few minutes and addressed the Convention in executive session.

After the Governor had finished his communication,

Mr. WEST moved that the Convention now adjourn.

The motion was put, and the Convention adjourned without day.

The PRESIDENT (Arthur J. Boreman of Wood,) said:

Gentlemen of the Convention: I desire in parting with you, to say a few words to you, and but a few. I return you my thanks for the complimentary terms in which you have chosen to speak in the resolution you have adopted. We have been assembled in Convention, at the last session and this, about one month, and during that time we have had delicate and responsible duties to perform. It gives me pleasure to say that you have performed those duties fairly, honestly and fearlessly.

At the earlier session, as is well known, you reorganized the government of Virginia, a step which, in my estimation, is fraught with great and grave interests - a step which I trust and believe you will never regret. I feel proud in saying that so far as my information has extended, that step meets with the cordial approbation of the loyal and patriotic citizens throughout the Commonwealth. They hail it as the best, and, probably, the only hope they have of deliverance from usurpation and despotism. It is for the present, in my estimation, our only salvation. I have assurances from the members of this Convention - I believe from all of them - that they will not desert this government; that they will not abate one jot from their hitherto laudable efforts to assist this government in putting in execution its laws under its authority.

You have passed many ordinances for the purpose of carrying out the objects of your assembling, amongst them one has lately been adopted by you probably more important than any other. You have taken the initiative in the creation of a new State. This is a step of vital importance. I hope, and I pray God it may be successful; that it may not engender strife in our midst, nor bring upon us difficulties from abroad, but that its most ardent advocates may realize their fondest hopes of its complete success. So far as I am personally concerned, I am content with the action of this Convention; I bow with submission to what you have done upon this subject.

Gentlemen, your labors have not been light; they have been arduous. You have not shrunk from the discharge of your duty, however. I feel that your constituents ought to be proud of their representatives, as I am sure that you are proud of a noble, generous and confiding constituency.

Now, gentlemen, permit me to congratulate you upon the harmony, the kind feeling which has characterized all your deliberations during both the sessions of this Convention. If at any time, through a laudable zeal, the members have been led into any manifestation of feeling or excitement, it passed with the moment, and only served to increase their ardor, their zeal and their cordiality in co-operating in the measures adopted by you.

I now hope that each and every one of you may be permitted to go to your homes and that you may find your homes, your firesides, your families, soon restored to their wonted peace and tranquility and happiness.

I now, gentlemen, bid you adieu, and in accordance with the resolution which was passed on yesterday, I pronounce this Convention adjourned.

August 6
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August 10
August 12
August 13
August 14
August 15
August 16
August 17
August 19
August 20
August 21

Chapter Nine: Second Session of the Second Wheeling Convention

A State of Convenience

West Virginia Archives and History