Shepherdstown in Jefferson County, West Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
“The Whole Town was a Hospital”
—Antietam Campaign 1862 —
The wounded Confederates streaming into Shepherdstown after the South Mountain actions of September 14 became a flood totaling 2,000–3,000 by the 18th, the day after Antietam. Soon even places normally deemed unfit for human habitation were turned into hospitals. They included the old abandoned tobacco warehouse at the north end of Princess Street and the incomplete town hall, now Shepherd University’s McMurran Hall, in front of you. Mary Mitchell wrote, “The unfinished Town Hall had stood in naked ugliness for many a long day. Somebody threw a few rough boards across the beams, placed piles of straw over them, laid down single planks to walk upon, and lo it was a hospital at once.”
Shepherdstown experienced the passing of armies for another two and a half years, but the events of the 1862 Maryland Campaign proved the most traumatic for the residents.
(Sidebar) “ The wounded continued to arrive until the town was quite unable to hold all the disabled and suffering.
Erected by West Virginia Civil War Trails.
Marker series. This marker is included in the West Virginia Civil War Trails marker series.
Location. 39° 25.852′ N, 77° 48.342′ W. Marker is in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, in Jefferson County. Marker is at the intersection of German Street (West Virginia Route 230) and King Street (West Virginia Route 480), on the right when traveling west on German Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Shepherdstown WV 25443, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. 1862 Antietam Campaign (here, next to this marker); Shepherd State Teachers College (here, next to this marker); War Memorial Civil War Hospital Site (a few steps from this marker); Pack Horse Ford Chapter, D.A.R. (a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named Civil War Hospital Site (within shouting distance of this marker); Spirit of 1775 Beeline March to Cambridge (within shouting distance of this marker); Mt. Nebo Lodge No. 91 (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Shepherdstown.
More about this marker. The Marker features an 1800s picture of Shepherdstown, in particular what appears to be the Trinity Episcopal Church on West German Street.
Categories. • Science & Medicine • War, US Civil •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on July 31, 2007, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,854 times since then and 14 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on July 31, 2007, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. • J. J. Prats was the editor who published this page.