Civil War History

West Virginia is commemorating its 150th anniversary of the Civil War, sharing our story of the road to statehood. Before West Virginia emerged as a new State, our local towns were once caught between Union and Confederate soldiers. Numerous battles, historic victories, and campaigns were fought in the places we now call home.

Upshur County has a deep history as a Civil War location, and has 4 official Civil War Markers in the county. But our history is much deeper than four sites, and spreads outside our county’s boarders.  Visit us to see Civil War buildings still standing and being used today—immerse yourself in our town’s rich heritage and story.

For a moving experience, watch the new Civil War videos.  Each of the nine regions of West Virginia have a specially produced video, depicting historic stories and sites. 

Jenkins in Buckhannon
16 Marion Street
Buckhannon WV 26201
Confederate Gen. Albert Jenkins overcame some Union resistance here during his late summer 1862 cavalry raid. Jenkins was attacked Aug 30 and scattered men from several Union units attempting to defend the town.

Destruction at the Courthouse
38 West Main Street
Buckhannon WV 26201
After defeating the town’s Union defenders Jenkins’s cavalry marched the prisoners to the courthouse and made them burn weapons and ammunition here. The building was used for storage and housing by Federal troops later in the war, causing considerable damage.

The Bassel House
90 Edmiston Way
Buckhannon WV 26201
After occupying Beverly for four days, Confederate Gen. John Imboden led his wing of cavalry here to reunite with the wing under Gen. William Jones during their 1863 raid. Long lines of cavalry and wagons passed this spot May 2, 1863.

Kesler’s Raid
88 Rock Cave Road
Rock Cave WV 26234
In September 1863 Confederate Maj. Joseph Kesler led a raid through Upshur County aimed at capturing Sutton. As Kesler made his way back to his base in Pocahontas County, he captured seventy Union militia men at Centerville which earned him praise from his commander.

General George McClellan
Visit Buckhannon City Park on Park Street to learn more about McClellan, a Union general, and Buckhannon and Upshur County's shifting loyalties during the Civil War. While Buckhannon and Upshur County remained staunchly pro-Union during the Civil War, the Buckhannon support continually shifted sides as troops from both sides would arrive.