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Confederate Calamity: Rebels raid Dover Township farms

The nicely maintained George Wintermeyer house at the intersection of Butter and Nursery roads in rural Dover Township, Pennsylvania.

On July 1, 1863, Confederate cavalry under J.E.B. Stuart, most likely patrols from the brigade of Brigadier General Wade Hampton III, foraged far and wide in north-central Dover Township in York County, Pennsylvania. They were looking for horses, and, more often than not, they discovered that the residents had taken their animals to safety. However, more than 260 horses were collected by Stuart (and earlier Rebels parties) in Dover Township alone, according to state border claim records in Harrisburg.

Among the farms hit by the Rebels was this one off Nursery Road. George Wintermeyer reported losing a three-year-old black mare from his stable in his barn.

Another view of Mr. and Mrs. Wintermeyer’s former house. That’s Butter Road running left to right.

This old wooden frame house across the road from Wintermoyer’s place was there in 1863 when Stuart’s men rode past the intersection.
The Confederate patrol continued to the northwest up Nursery Road, occasionally peeling off to hit isolated farms on side roads.

Among those farmers on the side roads was a 66-year-old blacksmith named Peter Shetter, who lived with his wife Mary in this home on George Street, which runs between Nursery Road and Carlisle Road (today’s Route 74).

Rebels entered the barn, haltered the Shetter’s four-year-old sorrel, and led it away over the vigorous protests of Mary Shetter. After the war, her husband filed a claim for $150, the estimated value of the stolen horse. He was never compensated.