Restricted West Virginia

OpnCoronet

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Feb 23, 2010
There was no overriding interest in the confederacy that overrod their interest in remaining in the Union. Especially when secession viewed as an illegal and possibly treasonal act of defiance to stable law under the Constitution.

I think the B&O RR through the state was the only direct link with the war in the West.
 

Eric Wittenberg

1st Lieutenant
Keeper of the Scales
Joined
Jun 2, 2013
Location
Columbus, OH
1) what was the biggest reason West Virginia seceded from Virginia and join the Union as a state?
2) How did this affect military and political developments during the war?

I've got a book coming out on this in the spring.

 

USS ALASKA

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Mar 16, 2016


HTHs,
USS ALASKA
 

Joshism

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Apr 30, 2012
Location
Jupiter, FL
The classic explanation is that residents of the Ohio Valley area of western Virginia felt neglected by distant Richmond and the tidewater aristocracy.

I think the bigger question is given that eastern TN, northern AL, Ozarks (AR), and some of western NC were predominantly Unionist areas why were the similar poor mountain residents with few slaves in the Allegheny Mountains (what became eastern WV) still predominantly pro-secession?
 

jackt62

Captain
Joined
Jul 28, 2015
Location
New York City
) what was the biggest reason West Virginia seceded from Virginia and join the Union as a state?
2) How did this affect military and political developments during the war?

1. Western Virginia was a generally poorer region of subsistence farmers with fewer slaves and ties to the slave holding economy. Unlike Unionists in East Tennessee, the unique geographical location of the western portion of Virginia contiguous with its northern neighbors allowed that portion of Virginia to successfully break away from the seceded portion of the state.
2. Due to the proximity to northern states, and a disorganized Confederate command structure, federal forces under McClellan scored their first, albeit minor victories in western Virginia during the summer of 1861. These victories basically drove Confederate forces from the region, thereby making statehood more likely, and also propelled George McClellan into the top Union command.
 

OpnCoronet

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Feb 23, 2010
I think the bigger question is given that eastern TN, northern AL, Ozarks (AR), and some of western NC were predominantly Unionist areas why were the similar poor mountain residents with few slaves in the Allegheny Mountains (what became eastern WV) still predominantly pro-secession?



Union sentiment(likesecession sentiment) was not evenly spread out in those areas, there were enclaves of strong pro and anti Union sentiments mixed within the general population of pro unionism.

In formation of W. Va., there were areas taken within its borders that were generally pro secession(or atleast Pro southern). Most State borders of most states are the result of Politiical factors in the territories and Congress, that work themselves out during the political process, as prescribed in the Constitution of the United States and not the wishes(if they have any) of the avg. citizens of any part of that state in particular.
 
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