West Virginia and the Civil War: Mountaineers are Always Free
The only state born as a result of the Civil War, West Virginia was the most divided state in the nation. About forty thousand of its residents served in the combatant forces about twenty thousand on each side. The Mountain State also saw its fair share of battles, skirmishes, raids and guerrilla warfare, with places like Harpers Ferry, Philippi and Rich Mountain becoming household names in 1861. When the Commonwealth of Virginia seceded from the Union on April 17, 1861, leaders primarily from the northwestern region of the state began the political process that eventually led to the creation of West Virginia on June 20, 1863. Renowned Civil War historian Mark A. Snell has written the first thorough history of these West Virginians and their civil war in more than fifty years.
About the Author:
Mark A. Snell, PhD, is the director of the George Tyler Moore Center for the Study of the Civil War and professor of history at Shepherd University, Shepherdstown, West Virginia. He is a retired U.S. Army officer and a former assistant professor at the United States Military Academy, West Point, New York. Mark has written or edited several books about the Civil War, including From First to Last: The Life of Major General William B. Franklin (Fordham University Press, 2002). His most recent publication is about the U.S. involvement in World War I and is titled Unknown Soldiers: The American Expeditionary Forces in Memory and Remembrance (Kent State University Press, 2008). During the fall semester of 2008, Mark served as visiting senior lecturer of war studies at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in the United Kingdom. In February 2009, he was given the Honorary West Virginian Award by Governor Joe Manchin, the highest individual honor the governor can bestow on someone who is not a West Virginia citizen.