Carlile's career was marked by controversy and seeming inconsistency. In his native Virginia, he was seen as a "radical" for his opposition to secession and support of separate statehood for West Virginia. In the Republican dominated Congress in Washington, however, he was denounced as a southern sympathizer and supporter of slavery. Carlile could be seen in both of these roles, because he simultaneously endorsed the sanctity of the Union and advocated a strict constructionist view of the Constitution that did not allow the central government to trample on states' rights. His political banishment after the Civil War was the price he paid for his convictions.
Bruce Tap, "Carlile, John Snyder," American National Biography Online, February 2000, http://www.anb.org/articles/04/04-00205.html.
CARLILE, John Snyder, a Representative and a Senator from Virginia; born in Winchester, Va., on December 16, 1817; educated by his mother; clerked in a store and commenced business for himself in 1834; studied law; admitted to the bar in 1840 and commenced practice in Beverly, Va. (now West Virginia) in 1842; moved to Philippi and later to Clarksburg and continued the practice of law; member, State senate 1847-1851; delegate to the State constitutional convention in 1850; elected as the candidate of the American Party to the Thirty-fourth Congress (March 4, 1855-March 3, 1857); delegate to the State secession convention in February 1861; elected as a Unionist to the Thirty-seventh Congress and served from March 4, 1861, until July 9, 1861, when he resigned to become Senator; elected as a Unionist to the United States Senate to fill the vacancy caused by the retirement of Robert M.T. Hunter and served from July 9, 1861, to March 3, 1865; member of the convention that submitted the new State ordinance in August 1861; died in Clarksburg, Harrison County, W.Va., October 24, 1878; interment in Odd Fellows Cemetery.
“Carlile, John Snyder,” Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1774 to Present, http://bioguide.congress.gov/scripts/biodisplay.pl?index=C000150.