Carnifex Ferry Battlefield State Park
Carnifex Ferry Battlefield State Park preserves the history of a significant Civil War battle that occurred here while also offering recreational opportunities and breathtaking views of the rim of Gauley River Canyon. The battle of Carifex Ferry took place on September 10, 1861. In this battle, Union troops led by Brigadier General William S. Rosecrans engaged Confederate forces and forced them to evacuate their position on the Henry Patterson Farm that overlooked Carnifex Ferry. The Confederate commander, Brigadier General John B. Floyd, retreated across Carnifex Ferry to the south side of the Gauley River and then eastward to Meadow Bluff near Lewisburg. This Civil War battle represented the failure of a Confederate attempt to regain control of the Kanawha Valley. As a result, the movement for West Virginia statehood proceeded following the battle without a serious military threat from Confederate soldiers who remained in the area.