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Valley of the Shadow

Staunton Vindicator: August 24, 1866

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[No Title]
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Summary: Praises the recently adjourned Philadelphia National Convention for the "harmony" that characterized the proceedings and for the "spirit of conservatism which pervaded the Convention." Includes the Declaration of Principles produced at the Convention.
Full Text of Article:

In our last we noticed the convening of the Philadelphia Convention, with the utmost harmony prevailing between its members.--This harmony was not disturbed during its entire session, and it may truthfully be said to have been the most harmonize Convention ever assembled.

We give below the declaration of principles unanimously adopted by the Convention, as was also the address to the people of the United States, which owing to tis length, we are unable to publish.

We wer not of those who expected to any great good from teh presence of Southern delegations in this Convention, beliving that the contest to be waged was exclusively between the Democrats and Conservatives of the North on the one side nad the Radicals on the other. We believed that in the resolutions and address fo the Convention, but to assure, if further assurance were needed, the Democracy and Conservative Republicans of our willingness to co-operate with them for the preservation of the Constitution, the restoration of the Union with the rights of all hte States unimpaired, and the consequent overthrow of radicalism. An opposite course was, however, deemed best to be pursued. We are not therefore disposed to cavil at what we anticipated would appear in the exposition of principles of this Convention. In the main we think the Northern Delegations have exhibited a conservatism, which, in so large an assemblage of men from different sections, and of so great a diversity of past political opinions, was scarcely to be expected.

Read with the spirit of conservatism which pervaded the Convention in view, there is but little to which we can object. Ye there is a little which can scarcely be credited as having received the unanimous assent of a body, which contained so many members by their approval thus condemned their own past course and opinions. Nevertheless it is so. We are however disposed to be charitable to them, and believe that they were willing to make a few sacrifices to secure the ultimate good to result to the whole country from the defeat of the radicals.

In this spirit we are not disposed to point out those resolutions to which we assent, and those, which, both in their tenor and phraseology, are objectionable, preferring the rather to give the resolutions as passed, and let our readers judge of their merits, unbiased by anything we might say.

Declaration of Principles

The National Union Convention, now assembled in the city of Philadelphia, composed of delegates from every State and Territory in the Union, admonished by the solemn lessons which for the last five years it has pleased the Supreme Ruler of the Universe to give to the American people; profoundly grateful for the return of peace; desirous, as are a large majority of their countrymen, in all sincerity, to forget and forgive the past; revering the Constitution as it comes to us from our ancestors; regarding the Union in its restoration more sacred than ever; looking with deep anxiety into the future as of instant and continuing trial, hereby issues and proclaims the following declaration of principles and purposes on which they have, with perfect unanimity, agreed.

1. We hail with gratitude to Almighty God the end of war and return of peace to an afflicted and beloved land.

2. The war just closed has maintained the authority of the Constitution, with all the power which it confers and all the restrictions which it imposes upon the General Government, unabridged and unaltered, and has preserved the Union with the equal rights and dignity and authority of the States perfect and unimpaired.

3. Representation in the Congress of the United States and in the Electoral College is right recognized by the Constitution as abiding in every State, and as a duty imposed upon its people, fundamental in its nature and essential to the existence of our republican institutions. And neither Congress nor the general government has any authority as a power to deny this right to any State, or to withhold its enjoyment, under the constitution, from the people thereof.

4. We call upon the people of the United States to elect to Congress, as members thereof, none but men who admit this right of fundamental representation, and who will receive to seats therein loyal representatives from every State in allegiance to the United States, subject to the constitutional right of each house to judge of the election returns and qualifications of its own members.

5. The Constitution of the United States and laws made in pursuance thereof are the supreme law of the land, anything in the constitution notwithstanding. All the powers not conferred by the Constitution upon the General Government, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States or the people thereof; and among the rights thus reserved to the States is the right to prescribe the qualification for the elective franchise therein, with which right Congress cannot interfere. No State or convention of States has the right to withdraw from the Union, or to exclude, through their action in Congress or otherwise, any other State or States from the Union. The union of these States is perpetual.

6. Such amendments to the Constitution of the United States may be made by the people thereof as they may deem expedient, but only in the mode pointed out by its provisions, and in the proposition and exposition of such amendments, whether by Congress of Convention, and in ratifying the same, all the States of the Union have an equal and undeniable right to a voice and a vote therein.

7. Slavery is abolished and forever prohibited; and there is neither desire nor purpose on the part of the Southern States that it should ever be re-established upon the soil or within jurisdiction of the United States; and the emancipated slaves in all the States of the Union should receive, in common with all their inhabitants, equal protection in person and property.

8. While we regard as utterly invalid, and never to be assumed or made of binding force, any obligation incurred or undertaken in making war against the United States, we hold the debt of the nation to be sacred and inviolable; and we proclaim our purpose in discharging this, as in performing all other national obligations, to maintain unimpaired and unimpeached, the honor and faith of the Republic.

9. It is the duty of the national Government to recognize the services of the federal soldiers and sailors in the contest just closed, by meeting promptly and fully all their just and rightful claims for the services they have rendered the nation, and by extending to those of them who have served, and to the widows and orphans of those who have fallen, the most generous and considerate support.

10. In Andrew Johnson, President of the United States, who has proved steadfast in his devotion to the constitution, the laws, and the interests of his country, unmoved by persecution and undeserved reproach, having faith unassailable in the people and in the principle of free government, we recognize a Chief Magistrate worthy of the nation, and equal to the great crisis upon which his lot is cast. And we tender to him, in his high and responsible duties, our profound respect, and assurances of our cordial and sincere support.

The President's Speech
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Summary: A transcript of President Johnson's recent speech in Washington in which he praises the work of the Philadelphia Convention, denounces the Radicals as enemies to the country and expresses his faith in "the people" and his continuing fidelity to the Constitution as the guide for his policy.

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Local Items
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Summary: Disputes the claim of the Lone Star Base Ball Club of Harrisonburg to have beaten the Excelsior Base Ball Club of Staunton in recent contest, claiming that in fact the Excelsior Club was winning after five innings played.
(Names in announcement: Fagan, Richards, Lilley, Snapp, Kinney, Taylor, McChesney, Woods, Wheat)
Local Items
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Summary: A tournament took place at the Rockbridge Baths last Thursday, where Augusta residents finished third and fifth.
(Names in announcement: Charlie Carson, Nora Mason, Beck Kinney, J. R. Bryan, Katie Moon)
Local Items
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Summary: An address was delivered last Sunday by Rev. J. B. Davis, the former pastor of the Lutheran Church Staunton, to the Staunton S. S. Union in the Lutheran Church.
(Names in announcement: Rev. J. B. Davis)
Local Items
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Summary: Reports that the depot buildings destroyed by Gen. Hunter in 1864 will soon be rebuilt "and will add much to the convenience of the business portion of the community as well as to the Railroad Company."
Local Items
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Summary: The 93rd Regiment of the Virginia Militia was organized in Middlebrook on August 11, where company officers were elected as well.
Local Items
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Summary: Gen. Jos. Johnston arrived at the American Hotel in Staunton last Wednesday, where he was serenaded by the local "Stonewall Brigade."
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Summary: Sarah Catherine Kennedy died in the vicinity of Coley Town, in Augusta, at the age of 37. "The large number of persons present at her funeral clearly indicate the strong hold the deceased had on the affectious of her neighborhood."
(Names in announcement: Sarah Catherine Kennedy)
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Summary: William Trout, the son of Rev. J. E. and Maggie Armstrong, died on August 15. He was 17 months old.
(Names in announcement: William Trout Armstrong, Rev. J. E. Armstrong, Maggie Armstrong)

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