On May 6, 2014, Dr. Kenneth Bailey presented “Civil War Ceredo, A Northern Experiment” at the Tuesday evening lecture in the Archives and History Library in the Cultural Center in Charleston.
Ceredo was part of New Englander Eli Thayer’s project to end slavery by demonstrating that free labor was more efficient and profitable than slave labor. When the town was established in the late 1850s, it was Thayer’s second effort (after a settlement in Kansas), and he and others had high hopes that it would succeed in eliminating slavery without resort to war. Bailey’s talk focused on Ceredo as seen by Charles B. Webb. Webb was one of the early settlers, a newspaper publisher, and eventually a Civil War soldier who wrote of his experiences before, during, and after his residence in the community.
Kenneth Bailey is a graduate of West Virginia Institute of Technology, Marshall University, and The Ohio State University from which he received his PhD. He is author of four books and numerous articles on various aspects of West Virginia history. After serving in a number of faculty and administrative positions, he retired as Dean of the College of Business, Humanities and Sciences at WVU Tech.