The Governor’s Office
Located on the second floor, this room is the office of Governor Pierpont, the head of the restored government of Virginia, when the region separated from Richmond.
“The convention today unanimously conferred on me the position of Governor of Virginia. In the revolution, Divine Providence only knows what is to be the result of this step.”
-Francis H. Pierpont, in a letter to his wife, June 20, 1861
Unlike other Confederate states, Virginia had two governments during the Civil War: a pro-Confederate government in Richmond and a pro-Union government at West Virginia Independence Hall in Wheeling. The Second Wheeling Convention elected Republican Francis H. Pierpont of Fairmont governor of the pro-Union Restored Government of Virginia on June 20, 1861. This room served as his office from 1861 to 1863. The desk and corner cupboard once belonged to the governor.
When West Virginia became a state on June 20, 1863, Arthur I. Boreman became the governor. Pierpont, who remained the governor of the Restored Government of Virginia, moved the seat of government to Alexandria, a Union-controlled town in eastern Virginia near Washington, DC. At the end of the war, he moved offices again to Richmond, where he remained governor until 1868. He then returned to Fairmont and ran successfully for the West Virginia House of Delegates. He died in 1886.