“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Huttonsville in Randolph County, West Virginia — The American South (Appalachia)

Camp Elkwater

Gateway to the Tygart Valley

— The First Campaign —

Camp Elkwater CWT Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bernard Fisher, August 12, 2010
1. Camp Elkwater CWT Marker
Inscription.  Following success at Rich Mountain in July 1861, Federal troops under Gen. Joseph Reynolds built Camp Elkwater to deter Confederates from returning. Fortifications here blocked the narrow valley floor and a turnpike leading to the Virginia Central Railroad. Erected in tandem with a fortress on Cheat Mountain, Camp Elkwater was the key to defense of the Tygart Valley.

Nearly 3,000 Federal troops were present when Confederates under Gen. Robert E. Lee threatened on September 12, 1861. A Confederate assault fizzled. Plagued by rain and cold weather, Lee left the area in humiliation. Federal troops remained at Camp Elkwater until spring, 1862.

“We are in a lovely little valley on a fine clear trout stream, with high mountains on all sides and large trees over us. A perfect camp, perfectly protected by entrenchments…Several regiments are in sight, and the enemy under Lee so near that our outposts have fights with his daily.” – Major Rutherford B. Hayes, 23rd Ohio Infantry U.S.A. A future U.S. President, Hayes served here with other notables.

“When morning broke, I could see the enemy’s tents on Valley River, at
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the point of the Huttonsville road just below me. It was a tempting sight.” - Gen. Robert E. Lee

Lt. Col. John Augustine Washington, C.S.A. Great grandnephew of the first president, and the last Washington to own Mt. Vernon, he was killed on Sept. 13, 1861, while scouting near Camp Elkwater.
Erected by West Virginia Civil War Trail.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #19 Rutherford B. Hayes, and the West Virginia Civil War Trails series lists. A significant historical month for this entry is July 1861.
Location. 38° 37.717′ N, 80° 1.639′ W. Marker is near Huttonsville, West Virginia, in Randolph County. Marker is on Seneca Trail (Route 219) 0.4 miles south of Kumbrabow Forest Road (County Route 219/16), on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Huttonsville WV 26273, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Elkwater / Col. J. A. Washington (a few steps from this marker); The Conley Graves (approx. 3.6 miles away); Old Brick Church (approx. 5½ miles away); Valley Head (approx. 5.6 miles away); Big Lime (approx. 6.1 miles away); Huttonsville (approx.
Camp Elkwater Markers image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bernard Fisher, August 12, 2010
2. Camp Elkwater Markers
6.2 miles away); a different marker also named Huttonsville (approx. 6.2 miles away); Bishop Asbury (approx. 6.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Huttonsville.
Also see . . .  Forgotten Fortification Saved at Elkwater. Rich Mountain Battlefield Foundation (Submitted on August 17, 2010.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on January 17, 2024. It was originally submitted on August 14, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,695 times since then and 30 times this year. Last updated on January 14, 2024, by Carl Gordon Moore Jr. of North East, Maryland. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on August 14, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.

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Feb. 26, 2024