Morgan’s Raid tour to be held July 27

SMITHFIELD – A raid trail that took two days to complete, until Gen. John Hunt Morgan’s surrender at West Point, will take four to five hours when the Friends of Smithfield will lead those interested in the history of the last days of Morgan along his trail from Harrisville through Dillonvale, Smithfield, Wintersville, Richmond and Bergholz to the surrender in Columbiana County.

The tour will begin at 9 a.m. on July 27, which is 150 years and two days from the actual raid, according to John Borkowski, one of the co-presidents of the Friends of Smithfield organization. Lyle Zerla will be the tour guide.

The tour will start at the east end of Harrisville on state Route 250 at the restaurant parking lot across from LKQ Auto Recycling. After proceeding through Dillonvale to Smithfield, there will be a stop and the Historical Society of Smithfield will serve coffee and doughnuts.

The historical society building features an older bronze tablet mounted on a stone marker that tells of the Confederate general’s passing through Smithfield on July 25, 1863. It notes that Morgan and his troops proceeded northward to New Alexandria, pursued by Gen. James Shackleford and his troops from Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan and Ohio. The monument was erected in July 1913, according to the bronze tablet.

There will be a lunch break at Lancelot’s in Wintersville and the tour is expected to get to Bergholz in time for the “Civil War Comes to Bergholz” event co-sponsored by the Bergholz Civil War Committee and Bergholz Ruritan Club. The cost of the Smithfield-sponsored tour will be $5, which does not include lunch.

Bill and Laura Nordan of Kentucky, portraying Morgan and his wife, will be on site in Bergholz, along with Lester Horowitz, a Civil War author, and Jeff Evans, Civil War historian.

The Bergholz Historical Museum will be open on Second Street and the reprinted book “Last Night and Last Day” will be available for purchase.

The Amsterdam Veterans of Foreign Wars will serve as honor guard and perform taps at the Westgrove Cemetery at 2:15 p.m. Civil War Vesper Services will be held at 7 p.m. at the Wintersville Two Ridge Presbyterian Church.

(McCoy can be contacted at