Men join guerrillas in Webster Co.: A WV Sesquicentennial Moment
August 20, 2012 ·
Hundreds of men in western Virginia left their homes in late August 1862 to join guerrilla fighters in Webster County.
An August 19, 1862, letter from Beverly,
Va., that was published in the Wheeling Intelligencer said Gov. Francis
H. Pierpont’s call for additional troops caused “a great commotion amongst the
people of West Virginia.”
In response to the news, Col. Thomas Maley
Harris assembled a cavalry and infantry in Beverly to intercept a well-mounted
company of 80 Confederate guerrillas riding toward Webster County.
Two miles outside of Huttonsville in
Randolph County, guerrillas ambushed Harris’ cavalry as 50 to 60 enemy rifles
fired in rapid succession along the front to the rear of his column.
Though the first seven or eight shots were
aimed at the colonel, “not a ball touched his clothing or his person.”
His horse, however, was not