The rededication of the grave markers of Confederate soldiers who died in the Battle of Fayetteville was a respectful and moving ceremony, attended by several people from southern West Virginia at Vandalia Cemetery in Fayetteville on June 15.
Earldine Robinson, president of Southern Cross Chapter 2001 of the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC), welcomed attendees, and introduced Nancy McKown, councilwoman, who represented the Town of Fayetteville. McKown’s remarks included the history of the Vandalia Cemetery and detailed the removal of the markers from their previous, inaccessible, location above the Fayetteville Town Center shopping area to their current place of honor in the cemetery. Town council paid for the relocation and commissioned an appropriate marker. Town employees were responsible for making the site centrally located and attractive in Vandalia Cemetery.
After the unveiling of the marker by Robinson and McKown, the next phase of the ceremony included a recitation by Southern Cross Chapter 2001 of the UDC Vice President Joan Dickerson of the history of the Battle of Fayetteville. She then read the name, rank and military unit of each soldier, as Robinson placed a red rose on that soldier’s memorial marker. Also participating in this solemn part of the ceremony was Confederate Captain reenactor Ed Craun.
Attending the ceremony was St. Albans resident Victoria Valentine, a direct descendent of William S. Morgan, one of the soldiers honored. She brought a picture of her ancestor to share with the UDC members.
In a day of honoring the dead, the Travelers District of the UDC met that morning in Oak Hill. A memorial service was held during the meeting to honor recently deceased UDC members from the chapters in Princeton, Bluefield, Union and Oak Hill. Attendees were from the Princeton and Oak Hill chapters.