WHEELING - Kenneth Bailey will give a presentation, "Scratch 'em and Sue 'em: Post-Civil War Legal Issues" at 2 p.m. Oct. 27 at West Virginia Independence Hall.
For several years following the war, much of West Virginia's court system was consumed by war-related legal issues. Former Confederates were "scratched" from the voting rolls and sued for alleged wrongs on civilians during the war.
Bailey discusses legal cases dealing with the reconstruction era questions of voting, false arrest, belligerent rights, property disputes, acts of Confederate county officers and value of Confederate money from the end of the war until the "let up" restored rights to former rebels in this former border state.
Bailey is the author of "Mountaineers Are Free: A History of the West Virginia National Guard," "Kanawha County Public Library: A History" and "Alleged Evil Genius: The Life and Times of Judge James H. Ferguson." He has served as West Virginia Historical Society president and the society's Quarterly editor. He received the 2003 Virgil A. Lewis Award for contributions to the preservation of West Virginia history. He has served on the West Virginia Archives and History Commission, Kanawha County Public Library Board of Directors and West Virginia Humanities Council Board of Directors. He is dean and professor emeritus at West Virginia University Institute of Technology in Montgomery, where he was the College of Business, Humanities and Sciences dean and a history professor.
The West Virginia Humanities Council established its Sesquicentennial Speakers Bureau to strengthen programs related to the 150th anniversary of the Civil War and birth of the state. The sesquicentennial period runs from 2011 to 2015 and will be marked by observances all over the country. Groups interested in scheduling a sesquicentennial speaker should contact West Virginia Humanities Council program officer Mark Payne at (304) 346-8500 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The talk is free and the public is invited to attend.
West Virginia Independence Hall is working with the Humanities Council to present the program. For information, call (304) 238-1300.