July 18, 1877

Washington, DC


Whereas it is provided in the Constitution of the United States that the United States shall protect every State in this Union, on application of the Legislature, or of the executive, (when the legislature cannot be convened,) against domestic violence; and


Whereas the Governor of the State of West Virginia has represented that domestic violence exists in said State, at Martinsburg, and at various other points along the line of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, in said State, which the authorities of said State are unable to suppress; and


Whereas the laws of the United States require that in all cases of insurrection in any State or of obstruction of the laws thereof, whenever it may be necessary, in the judgment of the President, he shall forthwith, by proclamation, command such insurgents to disperse and retire peaceably to their respective abodes within a limited time:


Now, therefore, I, RUTHERFORD B. HAYES, President of the United States, do hereby admonish all good citizens of the United States, and all persons within the territory and jurisdiction of the United States, against raiding, countenancing, abetting, or taking part in such unlawful proceedings; and I do hereby warn all persons engaged in or connected with said domestic violence and obstruction of the laws to disperse and retire peaceably to their respective abodes on or before 12 o’clock noon of the 19th day of July instant. 


In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand, and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.