CS General John B. Floyd
[Formerly Lawrence, now Martin Co., KY]
and the Warfield Saltworks
On March 3, 1857, George Rogers Clark Floyd deeded all the Warfield property to his brother John B. Floyd. Thus began a short but interesting chapter in Lawrence County history.
John B. Floyd, son of VA governor John Floyd, was born in Smithfield, Montgomery County on June 1, 1806. He graduated from Columbia College in South Carolina in 1829 and lived three years in Arkansas before returning to Virginia to practice law in Washington County.
He served in the VA state legislature from 1847 until 1849 and as governor of Virginia from 1849 to 1852. He supported James Buchanan during his campaign for US president and upon his election Floyd was appointed sceretary of war. Floyd held this post from 1857 to December 1860, which he resigned, being a Southerner in his convictions and beliefs, after Major Robert Andersonís occupation of Fort Sumner, SC.
Transcript of his resignation.
In January 1861, Floyd's Warfield property came under a sheriff's sale and ownership changed to Colonel Laban T. Moore, former US senator from Lawrence County, George W. Gallup, future commander of the 14th KY Infantry [US], and investors from Cincinnati.
On May 23, 1861, Floyd was commissioned brigadier-general in the Confederate Army. He saw his first service at Carnifex Ferry, Va., Sept. 10, 1861, where he was wounded.
He was the senior commander at Fort Donelson in February 1862, when Grant advanced from Cairo upon the fort. Floyd refused to surrender, withdrew with a large part of his brigade, and reached Nashville in safety.
He subsequently had command of the "Virginia State Line," which operated mainly in western and southwestern Virginia.
Health reasons forced Floyd to return home to Abingdon where he died on 26 August 1863 at the age of 57. General Floyd died at Mrs. Robert W. Hughes's home near Abingdon, Va., Aug. 26, 1863.
After the war, in 1866, the Warfield property was sold back to the Floyd family for $ 3,500. For more information on Warfield, including a map click here
Researched and compiled by Marlitta H. Perkins [Summer/Fall 2002]
Links of interest regarding John B. Floyd
Jeffrey Weavver's page
Historical Sketches of Southwest Virginia
Wise County Virginia
Genealogical Research Site