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Valley of the Shadow

Staunton Vindicator: December 2, 1864

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Description of Page: On this page are several articles on the war, advertisements, notices, and a poem.

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Description of Page: Also on this page are other articles on the war, especially developments in Georgia, and additional advertisements and notices.

War News
(Column 1)
Summary: Little has happened in Richmond and Petersburg in the past week, except a report of capture of another enemy picket line on November 28, 1864. Indications are that Grant is amassing troops in the area in preparation for another advance. The editor includes reports from Georgia and Tennessee and states that nothing of interest has happened in the Valley. The enemy is said to be encamped below Strasburg and to have headquarters at or near Kernstown.
Full Text of Article:

War News.

Since our last issue, nothing of interest has occurred on our lines below Richmond and Petersburg. It is stated by some prisoners recently, taken, that another Yankee picket line has been captured in front of Mahone, on the morning of the 28th. They state that it was very dark, and they could not discern the full force that took them; but that the attack was very sudden, that 20 or 30 were killed on the spot, and about 60 or 70 captured. The general impression with the knowing ones seems to be, that Grant is evidently making ready for another advance on our right, and is massing troops in that quarter. Our batteries still continue to shell Dutch Gap, and it is reported that Gen. Picket, from his lines South of Battery Howlett's, had also opened with his cannon upon the enemy in his front, who are believed to be mostly negroes. The Richmond papers state that a report was current there, that Grant had sent off a considerable body of troops to co-operate with Sherman in Georgia, and to aid that General in reaching and establishing a base on the Atlantic coast.

The latest intelligence we have from Georgia is contained in the following extract which we copy from a Georgia paper.

The Augusta "Sentinel," of the 22d, states that intelligence reached Augusta the evening before, by the passenger train on the Georgia Railroad, that our authorities had burned the bridge over the Oconee river, and that the Yankee column, moving down the road, had diverged from it and was hastening to join the main body.

It is stated that the Yankees had a large wagon train with them, which was divided after leaving the Georgia road, in order to sweep all supplies from the section within reach of the two routes taken. Scouts report them five brigades strong.

The rumor that the Court House and depot at Madison had been burned is correct.

The Macon train arrived the night of the 21st at its usual time. The train left for that city next morning at its usual hour.

The Macon "Telegraph" says it intends to hold forth in Macon until the Confederate flag ceases to wave over the city.

From the Richmond "Whig," who was furnished with a copy of the Augusta "Constitutionalist" of the 25th we learn that Gen. Wayne has whipped Kilpatrick's cavalry division at the Ocenee bridge, driving them headlong and in confusion. He telegraphs that he is perfectly able to take care of himself.

Wheeler, with many thousand men, has intercepted the enemy at a point, at present unmentionable, and is giving them no rest, night or day.

The main body of the enemy is moving down the western side of the Oconee, and has shown no disposition thus far to attempt its passage.

The "Constitutionalist" adds that three hundred prisoners arrived last evening from up the Georgia Road, and four hundred more are to arrive to-day.

These prisoners report that a division of three thousand of our cavalry has followed them all the way, dashing upon them constantly, picking up stragglers and capturing wagons.

We have nothing from the army of Gen. Breckenridge since the affair of the 9th ult., in which the enemy were driven beyond Strawberry plains. The next we hear from this chivalrous chieftain may be that he has penetrated his native State with his gallant army, and hoisted the Confederate banner, under the ample folds of which we hope he may redeem that downtrodden State from the tyranny of Yankee rule, and place her where her heart is, and where of right she ought to be, among her sister States of our glorious Confederacy.

The news from the "Army of Tennessee" is becoming interesting again. We are now informed that it was concentrating near Columbia, Tennessee, last week, and that Thomas was falling back towards Nashville, having evacuated Huntsville, Decatur and Pulaski. The main body of Hood's army crossed the Tennessee river at Florence, on the 13th instant, the day after Sherman left Kingston on his Georgia expedition. Lee's corps had previously occupied Florence.

Nothing of interest has taken place in the army of Genl. Early, during the past week.

The Yankees are said to be encamped below Strasburg, their headquarters at or near Kernstown.

A Word to the Wise
(Column 1)
Summary: The feeding of the troops is of utmost concern to all southerners, but the recent destruction in the Valley leaves insufficient produce to feed the local people, much less supply the troops. The editor joins his voice with others raising the concern that supplies are not being managed properly. The many areas of the state that have suffered so much less than the Valley and that, in turn, have more abundant produce should be called upon to provide produce for impressment and to provide food for people in the Valley.
Full Text of Article:

A Word to the Wise.

The success of our arms, in the glorious struggle for independence in which we are engaged, depends as much upon sustaining our armies in the field as upon the invincible spirit of the brave men who bear the brunt of battle. That it is of the primest necessity that they should be well fed, well clad and well armed no one will pretend to gainsay, but as to the means of doing this there may be a diversity of opinion. Our section has been sorely oppressed by two invasions of the enemy--its barns, mills, factories, fences &c. burned; cattle, horses, sheep and hogs killed or driven off; wheat and long-forage, seized or destroyed, thus leaving but little for subsistence for our people. To be fed on the meagre remnant left by the Vandal invaders are the non-producers as well as the producers themselves. In some portions of our County, the little our farmers had left has been impressed for the ruse of the army of the Valley, leaving, in many instances, an insufficiency for their own immediate wants, to supply which they must go into the depleted market with the non-producer and buy.

We do not doubt that the necessity, at times, was such that the army of the Valley would have suffered if this course had not been pursued, and on this account many have hesitated to complain, but the evil seems to be a growing one and we therefore raise our voice, against the evident mismanagement which makes its continuance necessary. Many portions of our State have been entirely free from the annoyances to which our Valley has been subjected and we are informed that in those sections the crops have been generally good and produce abundant--certainly more abundant than in this pillaged district. They are indirect Railroad connection with this place, and ample supplies may be procured and easily transported to this point and thus relieve our people and the army for a further draft upon their already scanty allowance. Besides this the transportation of supplies from Staunton to the army is over a good road and can be much more speedily done than from our different farm houses over mud roads.

If it is desirable that a crop should be raised in our Valley next year it is necessary that our people should have enough left to subsist them, which can not possibly be the case if continuous drafts are made upon their present small supply and hence we appeal to those who have this matter in hand to take hold of and arrange it so that the army will be supplied from more plentiful sections and the chances for a crop next year in this locality be greatly increased.

Enlistment of Negroes
(Column 2)
Summary: The writer points out that, in light of the recent discussions regarding use of African Americans in the Confederate army, readers should be aware that James Madison recommended their employment in the Revolutionary army. He proposed that slaves be offered their freedom and wages if they enlisted. Owners received compensation of a maximum of 120 pounds.
Origin of Article: Sentinel
Full Text of Article:

Negroes for the Army.

In the Senate on Tuesday, Mr. Henry of Tennessee, from the committee on Military Affairs, reported a bill to amend an act to increase the efficiency of the army by the employment of free negroes and slaves in certain cap cities. The bill increased the compensation given to free negroes and and [sic] other free persons of color to $18 per month; authorizes the employment of 40,000 slaves, instead of 20,000 by the Secretary of War--to impress them, if unable to hire them, and those not engaged in agricultural productions shall be the first impressed, and then those engaged in agricultural pursuits are to be taken from persons having more than fifteen able bodied hands, between the ages of 16 and 50 years. The bill was ordered to be printed, and placed upon the calendar.

Negroes for the Army
(Column 2)
Summary: Reports that Senator Henry of Tennessee introduced a bill to employ free blacks and slaves in the Confederate army.
Gen'l Lee's Army
(Column 3)
Summary: The Petersburg Express reports that the men of Lee's army are in the "best possible condition and in unsurpassed spirits" and that the North will never starve or defeat the South.
Origin of Article: Petersburg Express
[No Title]
(Column 2)
Summary: W. E. Logan, salt agent for Augusta County, replies to the query in last week's issue regarding the price of salt in the county. Logan invites the writer to visit him at his home or to wait until his report is filed in the clerk's office of the county court in order to receive an answer.
(Names in announcement: W. E. Logan)
Trailer: W. E. Logan, Salt Agent for Augusta County
Education of the Children of Deceased and Disabled Soldiers
(Column 4)
Summary: The central committee on the education of the children of deceased and disabled soldiers in Richmond has appointed a committee in the Valley, composed of George B. Taylor, C. R. Mason, M. G. Harman, W. H. Peyton, W. J. Shumate, and W. J. D. Bell, to identify children who need to be in school and to solicit donations for the purpose of placing these children in school.
(Names in announcement: George B. Taylor, C. R. Mason, M. G. Harman, W. H. Peyton, W. J. Shumate, W. J. D. Bell)
A List of Prisoners of the 52nd Regiment Va. Infantry, now at Elmira New York, including those who have died while in prison
(Column 4)
Summary: Prisoners from the 52nd Regiment now in Elmira, New York, or who have died there include: from Company A: J. Croft, T. Cox, William T. Jimison, D. Mathews, J. Mathews; from Company B: H. Coiner, William Swan, J. W. Terrell; from Company C: W. J. Fix, J. Croft; from Company D: Samuel Huffer, J. Crumb; from Company E: C. C. Wells, Bradshaw; A. J. Black, William Clark, James Wood; from Company F: J. Myers, J. Redaford, J. Harshbarger, C. Allen, died; from Company G: B. F. Coffman, T. Rankin, G. K. Hanger, William Parrish, E. F. Stockdall, William Stockdall, died, H. T. Stockdall, died, J. E. Wheeler, died, J. C. Barger, died, J. W. Smith, died, T. J. Tally, J. L. Harris, died; from Company H: J. H. Lee, H. B. Hollace, K. Zimbro, William Wayd; from Company I: J. Cox, James Hawp, J. E. Harris, J. Miller, died, Sergeant Summers, died; from Company K: William Z. Zack, M. D. Keyser, P. L. Kerry, J. H. Zack, died, J. Lynkswiler, S. P. Archey.
(Names in announcement: J. Croft, T. Cox, William T. Jimison, D. Mathews, J. Mathews, H. Coiner, William Swan, J. W. Terrell, W. J. Fix, J. Croft, Samuel Huffer, J. Crumb, C. C. Wells, Bradshaw, A. J. Black, William Clark, James Wood, J. Myers, J. Redaford, J. Harshbarger, C. Allen, B. F. Coffman, T. Rankin, G. K. Hanger, William Parrish, E. F. Stockdall, William Stockdall, H. T. Stockdall, J. E. Wheeler, J. C. Barger, J. W. Smith, T. J. Tally, J. L. Harris, J. H. Lee, H. B. Hollace, K. Zimbro, William Wayd, J. Cox, James Hawp, J. E. Harris, J. Miller, Sergeant Summers, William Z. Zack, M. D. Keyser, P. L. Kerry, J. H. Zack, J. Lynkswiler, S. P. Archey)
(Column 4)
Summary: Thomas Harrison Bryan, a member of Company L, West Augusta Guard, 5th Virginia Regiment, was killed in the battle at Monocracy. His funeral will be held at the Baptist church in Staunton on December 4, 1864, at eleven o'clock.
(Names in announcement: Thomas Harrison Bryan)
Negroes for Sale
(Column 4)
Summary: Peck advertises that he has four black women and girls for sale privately.
(Names in announcement: H.H. Peck)
$400 Reward!!
(Column 5)
Summary: Pitman, about fifteen years old, tall and slender, a clear black color, wearing a gray jacket, brown pants, and a brown shirt, and carrying a hand satchel thought to be black, ran away from Hugh W. Sheffey on November 24, 1864. Pitman, who can read and "has an appearance of simplicity when spoken to and often twists up his forehead when addressed," is probably on his way to Gordonsville or Charlotte County. Sheffey offers a reward of $400 for the return of Pitman to him.
(Names in announcement: Hugh W. Sheffey)
Full Text of Article:

$400 Reward.

Ran away from the subscriber on Thursday the 24th of this month, my negro boy


He is about fifteen years old, tall for his age and slender of a clear black color, can read, has an appearance of simplicity when spoken to and often twists up his forehead when addressed. He had on a Grey jacket, brown pants and a brown shirt and took with him a hand satchel believed to be black. He is probably making his way towards Gordonsville or Charlotte County.

I will give Four Hundred Dollars for his arrest and detention in jail or otherwise se[e] that I recover possession of him.

Hugh W. Sheffey.

Staunton Dec. 2--3t 1864.

$100 Reward!!
(Column 5)
Summary: George Lee, a mulatto boy about fifteen years old who "walks with his toes somewhat inward," ran away from Joseph T. Hess in Greenville, Augusta County, on October 26, 1864. Hess offers a reward of $100 for his return.
(Names in announcement: George Lee, Joseph T. Hess)
Full Text of Article:

$100 Reward.

Ran away from the subscriber near Greenville, Augusta Co., Va., on the 26th day of October last, a mulatto boy named

George Lee,

about 15 years old, walks with his toes somewhat inward. One Hundred Dollars will be given for his apprehension and confinement in the Staunton or Lexington jail so that I may recover him.

A. F. Kinney,


Dec 2--4t.