Matthew A. Perry: Ceredo Town Hall needs historical marker

September 12, 2018

I love historical markers. I am the lunatic that will change three lanes and pull over on the side of the road to see what minor or significant historical event took place at or near that spot.

The West Virginia Division of History and Culture does a fantastic job in our state marking historical events with their highway marker project.

Even though the state does a tremendous job marking historical events, it is impossible for all the important places to be marked.

This week I have decided that the town of Ceredo needs another marker, because of the vital importance of a patch of B Street.

All residents are familiar with Ceredo City-Hall and the Police and Fire Departments, but very few know just how historically critical that patch of land is.

Though it is hard to notice today, that plot of land is on a beautiful little knoll that, before KRT was built, gave a magnificent panorama of the Ohio River.

Because of the elevation of that plot of land, and the location just a block or so away from the river, it was chosen as the home of the Fifth West Virginia Volunteer Infantry.

The Fifth West Virginia was created to protect the anti-slavery citizens of Ceredo from the rest of Wayne County and most of Cabell County. Men from the Western Counties, Boyd County Kentucky, and Lawrence County, Ohio flocked to Ceredo to volunteer for the Fifth West Virginia. Their camp housed more than five hundred men and their provisions.

Large white tents pocked the land all over what is today B-street. Known during the war as Camp Pierpont, named for the Governor of the Reorganized State of Virginia, the men kept watch over the Ohio River and kept the people of Ceredo safe.

Indeed a valuable parcel of land for nearly two hundred years, the modern day city hall would look even better with an excellent white historical marker in its front lawn.

Matthew A. Perry is a history teacher at C-K Middle and writes about the odd side of history at www.theoddpast.com.

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