In looking for a Yankee incursion into the central Valley during the War, I found this item about William E. Coffman:
To Be Hung—Wm. E. Coffman, of this county, who was on trial by Court Martial in Harrison-burg, for several days last week, charged with piloting and assisting deserters from the Confederate Army to escape to the enemy’s lines, and with communicating information to the enemies of his country, has been found guilty, and will suffer the extreme penalty of the law—death by hanging—on Friday next, the 18th of December. The execution will be under the con-trol of Gen. Imboden’s Brigade, and will take place near where the Brigade is now stationed, should the exigencies of the service not require the removal of the Brigade before the day of execution. Should the Brigade be removed, the execution will take place under the control of the Provost Marshall at Harrisonburg. Coffman was confined in the guard-house here until the conclusion of his trial, when his sentence was read to him, and, after being heavily ironed, he was transferred to our county jail for safe keep-ing, where he will remain until the day of his execution. Coffman is a married man, and the father of several children. It is scarcely necessary to say that the trial he underwent showed he was a very bad man and deserved the terrible fate awaiting him; for who but a thoroughly depraved man and one unfit to live, could do his utmost to betray his suffering, bleeding country into the hands of her ruthless and vindictive enemies?
Rockingham Register, Harrisonburg, VA, 11 Dec. 1863.