With the Civil War’s outbreak, both the North and the South were ill prepared for the conflict. Ohio Governor William Dennison hoped to utilize the state’s militia forces to assist President Abraham Lincoln in reuniting the nation.
With the Civil War’s outbreak, both the North and the South were ill prepared for the conflict. Ohio Governor William Dennison hoped to utilize the state’s militia forces to assist President Abraham Lincoln in reuniting the nation. Unfortunately for Dennison, many of Ohio’s militia units were no longer in existence. Those units that continued to operate were primarily social organizations that rarely practiced military maneuvers. Following the Confederate attack on Fort Sumter in Charleston, South Carolina, in April 1861, President Lincoln called for seventy-five thousand volunteers to subdue the Confederate States of America. Despite the lack of a well-trained militia, Governor Dennison beseeched communities to send their militia companies to Columbus, Ohio for possible use by the North during the American Civil War.
To process Ohio’s volunteers, Governor Dennison ordered the creation of Camp Jackson at Columbus. To help speed soldiers’ inductions into Ohio’s military, Dennison soon authorized the establishment of other camps across the state, including Camp West Union at West Union, Ohio. Camp West Union was established in October 1861. It was located at the Adams County Fairgrounds in West Union. The camp remained in existence for only a few days, and only the 70th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry organized at the camp.
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"Camp West Union," Ohio Civil War Central, 2022, Ohio Civil War Central. 10 Aug 2022 <http://www.ohiocivilwarcentral.com/entry.php?rec=430>
"Camp West Union." (2022) In Ohio Civil War Central, Retrieved August 10, 2022, from Ohio Civil War Central: http://www.ohiocivilwarcentral.com/entry.php?rec=430