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Valley of the Shadow

Staunton Vindicator: February 5, 1859

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Description of Page: Congressional news

Democratic Meeting
(Column 1)
Summary: Announcement of a Democratic meeting on February 1 at the Court House in order to nominate someone to replace John Letcher in Congress.
Is a Convention Necessary or Not?
(Column 1)
Summary: Argues that a convention can only strengthen the Democratic Party and would battle the Opposition; partly illegible.
(Names in announcement: Mr. Letcher, Mr. Powell, Gov. Smith)
Full Text of Article:

"The democrats of the county, of the district, we appeal to you on the ground of party allegiance, of party discipline and custom, to throw off the lethargy which seems to have seized you, and rally to the rescue of the party."

Mr. J.W. Bridegame
(Column 2)
Summary: Bridegame purchased the paper the Valley Democrat.
(Names in announcement: J.W. Bridegame)
The Post Office
(Column 2)
Summary: Article tells of present debate over the raising of postage rates and argues that the people should only consent to an increase if the office is reformed.
Full Text of Article:

The revenue arising from the present rates of postage having been found greatly inadequate to the support of that important department of Government, the question of raising the postage is being agitated, and is creating considerable excitement throughout the country. We are decidedly of the opinion that this department ought, if possible, to be a self-sustaining one, but before an y such measure as increase in the postage is reported to, we think that searching inquiry should be made into the expenditures of the post office department, and retrenchment and reform should be the maxim whenever such is possible. The people will never and ought never to consent to an increase in the postage, until this is done. The system of extending indiscriminately and by wholesale the franking privilege and many other obviously unnecessary and extravagant expenditures, ought immediately to be discontinued and when, after a fair trial of the retrenchment policy, it is found that the department is inadequate with all possible economy, to the support of itself under the present rates of postage, it will then be time to taken into consideration the wisdom of an increased postage. As is well remarked by the Enquirer, "the post office is emphatically the poor man's Department of the Federal Government." In its numerous ramifications it reaches the interest of every man, woman and child of the Union, and it is of the utmost importance that it should be carried on with as much economy, and with as little expense as possible, so we hope our worthy representatives will go to work in earnest to bring the outlay of the Post Office, inside of its income. This the people are certain can be done, and they will never believe the contrary unless it be proved by something infinitely more to the point than long heavy speeches on the subject, and resolutions which are never acted upon.

Mr. Letcher and the Old Soldier's Pension Bill--The Ruffner Pamphlet
(Column 3)
Summary: Article written by "we of the Tenth Legion" criticizes the Old Soldiers' Pension Bill as an unnecessary drain on the treasury and defends Letcher against Know-Nothing charges that he is an abolitionist.
(Names in announcement: Mr. Letcher, Mr. Summers)
Full Text of Article:

"...the time is approaching when every Southern man will contend that the Slave trade is morally, religiously and politically right, and when support of that trade will be made a test of fealty to the South."

Valuable Machine
(Column 3)
Summary: A machine that works lumber is on display at the American Hotel.
(Names in announcement: Mr. Connell)
The Homestead Bill
(Column 3)
Summary: Article lambastes the Homestead Bill.
(Column 4)
Summary: Hunter of Jefferson has refused to let the Opposition submit his name for gubernatorial candidacy.
(Names in announcement: Andrew Hunter)
Origin of Article: Blue Ridge Republican
Democratic Caucuses
(Column 4)
Summary: A caucus of Democratic senators met to consider the President's proposal to change the tariff.
(Names in announcement: Mr. Hunter, Mr. Bigler)

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(Column 2)
Summary: Chappell, a student at Hampden Sidney College, committed suicide by taking poison.
(Names in announcement: C.E. Chappell)

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Description of Page: Advertisements