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The First and Second Wheeling Conventions

Washington Hall. The Birth-Place of West Virginia.

Washington Hall,at the corner of Market and Monroe streets in Wheeling, Virginia (later West Virginia), was the site of the First Wheeling Convention, an antisecession convention held May 13–15, 1861. After Virginians overwhelmingly voted to secede from the Union, the Second Wheeling Convention was held in June 1861 at the Custom House in Wheeling. Delegates called for the reorganization of the state government—the so-called Restored government of Virginia—which remained loyal to the Union during the war. The delegates met again in August 1861 and approved an ordinance to form a new state—what would become West Virginia. This line drawing was published in Virgil Anson Lewis's How West Virginia Was Made (1909).

Citation: How West Virginia was Made. Proceedings of the First Convention of the People of Northwestern Virginia at Wheeling, May 13, 14 and 15, 1861, and the Journal of the Second Convention of the People of Northwestern Virginia at Wheeling, which Assembled, June 11th 1861, and Continued in Session until June 25th. F241 .L675 1909. Special Collections, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Va.

Original Author: Unknown

Created: 1909

Medium: Line drawing frontispiece

Courtesy of University of Virginia Special Collections

Constituent Convention of Virginia, Assembled in the Custom-House at Wheeling, Ohio Co., June, 1861.

An engraving published in the July 6, 1861, edition of Harper's Weekly depicts men and women crowded into the Custom House and listening to a speech at the Second Wheeling Convention in June 1861. A banner above the scene reads, "The Union Must, and Shall Be Preserved."

When the Civil War divided the Virginia state government, the convention met in Wheeling, in what is now West Virginia, to reorganize and fill the offices vacated by Confederates. On June 20, 1861, Francis H. Pierpont was elected governor of the Restored state government. The Restored capital was located in Wheeling until June 1863 and thereafter in Alexandria; the Confederate capital was in Richmond.

Citation: Harper's Weekly. AP2 .H32. Special Collections, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Va.

Original Author: Jasper Green, artist

Created: July 6, 1861

Medium: Engraving

Courtesy of University of Virginia Special Collections

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  • Washington Hall. The Birth-Place of West Virginia.

    Washington Hall,at the corner of Market and Monroe streets in Wheeling, Virginia (later West Virginia), was the site of the First Wheeling Convention, an antisecession convention held May 13–15, 1861. After Virginians overwhelmingly voted to secede from the Union, the Second Wheeling Convention was held in June 1861 at the Custom House in Wheeling. Delegates called for the reorganization of the state government—the so-called Restored government of Virginia—which remained loyal to the Union during the war. The delegates met again in August 1861 and approved an ordinance to form a new state—what would become West Virginia. This line drawing was published in Virgil Anson Lewis's How West Virginia Was Made (1909).

    Citation: How West Virginia was Made. Proceedings of the First Convention of the People of Northwestern Virginia at Wheeling, May 13, 14 and 15, 1861, and the Journal of the Second Convention of the People of Northwestern Virginia at Wheeling, which Assembled, June 11th 1861, and Continued in Session until June 25th. F241 .L675 1909. Special Collections, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Va.

    Original Author: Unknown

    Created: 1909

    Medium: Line drawing frontispiece

    Courtesy of University of Virginia Special Collections

  • Constituent Convention of Virginia, Assembled in the Custom-House at Wheeling, Ohio Co., June, 1861.

    An engraving published in the July 6, 1861, edition of Harper's Weekly depicts men and women crowded into the Custom House and listening to a speech at the Second Wheeling Convention in June 1861. A banner above the scene reads, "The Union Must, and Shall Be Preserved."

    When the Civil War divided the Virginia state government, the convention met in Wheeling, in what is now West Virginia, to reorganize and fill the offices vacated by Confederates. On June 20, 1861, Francis H. Pierpont was elected governor of the Restored state government. The Restored capital was located in Wheeling until June 1863 and thereafter in Alexandria; the Confederate capital was in Richmond.

    Citation: Harper's Weekly. AP2 .H32. Special Collections, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Va.

    Original Author: Jasper Green, artist

    Created: July 6, 1861

    Medium: Engraving

    Courtesy of University of Virginia Special Collections