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

Battle of Guyandotte

Federal Retaliation

Battle of Guyandotte Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, April 14, 2014
1. Battle of Guyandotte Marker
Inscription.  After capturing Guyandotte on November 10, 1861, and rounding up civilian Unionists and Federal recruits, Confederate forces under Col. John Clarkson and Col. Albert G. Jenkins began the next day to leave the town with their prisoners. At the same time the steamboat Boston arrived—too late—with Union reinforcements, about 200 soldiers of the 5th (West) Virginia Infantry. Boston fired a few shots from her bow gun at the departing Confederates and then docked. Earlier, steamer had picked up a few angry Unionists who had escaped from Guyandotte to Ohio when the Confederates attacked.

When they and the reinforcements landed here, they heard stories of an alleged “massacre” from wounded survivors who had evaded capture. They also learned of collaboration between pro-secessionist residents and the Confederate cavalrymen. The troops’ and Union sympathizers’ rage boiled over. An officer, perhaps Col. John L. Ziegler, issued orders to burn Guyandotte.

Only a few dwellings, such as the Keenan House and the Crawley House, survived the fire. The town’s most prominent secessionists received special
Battle of Guyandotte Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, April 14, 2014
2. Battle of Guyandotte Marker
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attention from the fire-setters. Soldiers knocked on doors demanding that residents vacate, sometimes allowing them to bring along their valuables. The business section of Guyandotte was completely gutted to prevent the Confederates from returning for supplies.

Notable buildings that were torched include Buffington Mill (reportedly the largest flour mill on the Ohio River between Cincinnati and Pittsburgh), the Forest Hotel, and Guyandotte Baptist Church. The entire town would have been burned, except that Union Col. William Bolles finally persuaded the soldiers to stop the destruction.

(lower left) Guyandotte’s cemetery is the oldest public cemetery in Cabell County and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Many of the area’s early settlers, as well as several American Revolutionary soldiers, are buried there.

(upper right) The Federal style Keenan House is one the oldest buildings in Guyandotte. It was constructed before 1840.

(upper left) A waterside town burning during the war, Harper’s Weekly, Aug. 31, 1861
(lower right) Bow gun on a steamer — Courtesy Library of Congress
Erected by West Virginia Civil War Trails.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil
Battle of Guyandotte Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, April 14, 2014
3. Battle of Guyandotte Marker
. In addition, it is included in the West Virginia Civil War Trails series list. A significant historical month for this entry is November 1579.
Location. 38° 25.723′ N, 82° 23.399′ W. Marker is in Huntington, West Virginia, in Cabell County. Marker can be reached from Guyan Street north of 5th Avenue, on the left when traveling south. The marker is located in the backyard of the Madie Carroll House. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 234 Guyan Street, Huntington WV 25702, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. A different marker also named Battle of Guyandotte (here, next to this marker); Madie Carroll House (a few steps from this marker); Raid on Guyandotte / Burning of Guyandotte (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); First Cabell County Court House (about 500 feet away); John S. Witcher (about 700 feet away); Guyandotte (about 800 feet away); West Virginia Colored Children's Home (approx. 1½ miles away); War Between the States Generals / Spring Hill Cemetery (approx. 1.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Huntington.
Battle of Guyandotte Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, April 14, 2014
4. Battle of Guyandotte Marker
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on May 14, 2014, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. This page has been viewed 602 times since then and 10 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on May 14, 2014, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Maryland. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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Mar. 9, 2021