Moorefield in Hardy County, West Virginia — The American South (Appalachia)
"… we are Virginians still"
This house was constructed about 1853 for Samuel A. McMechen, merchant, father of five daughters and deacon of Moorefield Presbyterian Church up the street on your right. The attached McMechen Store, on the right, predates the house. A Confederate sympathizer, McMechen entertained Confederate officers at his house when they controlled Moorefield. When Union forces occupied the town, McMechen left for his cabin at Howard's Lick Spring (presently Lost River State Park) or for friends' homes in the Shenandoah Valley. Presumably he was away when Union Gen. John C. Frémont made his headquarters in the house in May 1862.
Confederate Gen. John McCausland, retreating after the unsuccessful attack on Washington, D.C. and the burning of Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, in 1864, was asleep upstairs when Union Gen. William W. Averell attacked his troops bivouacked four miles north of here about dawn on August 7. McCausland lost hundreds of horses, later hampering Confederate cavalry operations in the Shenandoah Valley.
Moorefield changed hands several times during the war as each side sought control of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad,
Confederate Gen. Fitzhugh Lee reported at the end of 1863 that few supplies could be found here.
At war's end, McMechen repaired his house, restocked his store, and helped the community recover. Resentment lingered, however. His wife, Mary Elizabeth McMechen, remarked in 1866, "We have been torn from Virginia by wicked force, but we are Virginians still."
Erected by West Virginia Civil War Trails.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Notable Buildings • War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (B&O), and the West Virginia Civil War Trails series lists. A significant historical month for this entry is May 1862.
Location. 39° 3.754′ N, 78° 58.181′ W. Marker is in Moorefield, West Virginia, in Hardy County. Marker is on North Main Street (U.S. 220) just north of Winchester Avenue (Old West Virginia Route 55), on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Moorefield WV 26836, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. S. A. McMechen House (a few steps from this marker); Moorefield (within shouting distance of this marker); Presbyterian Church (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Moorefield Presbyterian Church (about 300 feet away); Hardy County's First Court House (about 500 feet away); The Parsonage (about 700 feet away); Maslin House (approx. 0.2 miles away); Veterans Memorial (approx. ¼ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Moorefield.
Related marker. Click here for another marker that is related to this marker. This marker has replaced the linked marker.
Credits. This page was last revised on January 28, 2021. It was originally submitted on July 18, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 194 times since then and 39 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on July 18, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.