Strikers in Full Possession of the Line

This excerpt from the July 19, 1877 edition of the London Times offers a description of the strikers' control of the Baltimore and Ohio line.

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The Baltimore and Ohio Railway strikers are in full possession of the line at Martinsburg and westward to Ohio river on both branches, the strike having extended to Wheeling, Grafton, and elsewhere. All goods traffic is entirely stopped, over 70 trains being blockaded. The troops sent to Martinsburg sympathize with the strikers. During Tuesday's skirmish the driver and stoker of a train which troops attempted to move ran off, and Colonel Faulkner, Aide-de-Camp to the Governor of West Virginia, commanding the troops, declared that if the train men deserted their posts he could do nothing further. The troops thereupon marched to the Armoury and were disbanded, leaving the strikers in sole possession. Another company of soldiers were ordered from Wheeling, and arrived at Martinsburg this morning, but have not left the train which brought them. All is quiet at Martinsburg, for the simple reason that nobody disputes authority with the strikers, who, having stopped all the trains, are now waiting to see what action the Railway Company will take.

There is no difficulty now at the Baltimore end of the line.

The sympathy of the West Virginia Militia for the strikers is so marked that the Governor finds he cannot depend upon them, and therefore this afternoon he telegraphed to the President to send Federal troops into West Virginia to suppress civil violence, but at the War Office the Governor's telegram is not deemed explicit enough for action to follow it, and he has therefore been asked to give further information.

Baltimore and Ohio shares sold at Baltimore today at 90.

About this Document

  • Source: London Times
  • Date: July 18, 1877