Washington County Courthouse: the previous courthouse, located on this site, was burned on December 14, 1864 when federal general George Stoneman made a raid from East Tennessee into Southwest Virginia. Stoneman's forces burned a number of important buildings in the town, as was their practice, including the railroad depot, the jail, and buildings used by Confederate forces. According to tradition, a late arriving unit led by Union Captain James B. Wyatt of the 13th Tennessee Cavalry, a native of Washington County, burned the court house and other buildings although it could have been burned earlier. Some accounts state that he had legal problems earlier and burned the court house for revenge. No records have been found to prove that, and he may simply have been a Unionist who had been treated badly. Confederate cavalry soldiers on the west end of town were alerted to Wyatt's actions. A chase ensued and Wyatt was shot and killed near the corner of Church and Water (now Park) Streets. Adjacent to the courthouse is the Confederate Soldier Monument, erected in 1907.
Last Updated: 4/9/2014 10:51 AM