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Valley of the Shadow

Staunton Vindicator: October 30, 1868

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Augusta County Fair
(Column 01)
Summary: The paper declares the Augusta County Fair a "great success." The editors estimate that between 7,000 and 10,000 people attended. The article gives an account of the activities that included speeches, exhibitions, and sports competitions.
(Names in announcement: Rev. Baird, Col. Baldwin, A. H. H. Stuart)

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To Our Patrons
(Column 01)
Summary: The editors announce that the Vindicator is being enlarged to eight columns. "When we took charge of the 'Vindicator,' in the early part of 1863, amid the excitement and disturbed condition of affairs, incidental to a state of War, on account of a lack of printing material, together with a small subscription list, we could furnish you with but a half sheet." Since then the size of the paper has steadily increased.
[No Title]
(Column 01)
Summary: Rice's Richmond Opera Troupe, with such performers as Billy Rice, Maguire, and Lafon, has been playing before crowded houses in Staunton. "Billy Rice and Rogers are incomparable as delineators of negro character and the whole troupe are first rate in their peculiar line."
A New Plan of Contracts with Freedmen
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Summary: Describes in great detail a contract system for black farm laborers in South Carolina. Claims it works really well and implies that Virginia should try it out.
Full Text of Article:

Among the various styles of contracts with the freedmen none seem to work better than the following, which has been largely adopted in South Carolina: The farmer furnishes plow animals and farm implements, and keeps all under his own care and control. He gives to each laborer a house and as much land as he can cultivate on his own account, and firewood--all free. The employee works for the planter the first half of the week, and works for himself the balance of the time. The laborer meets his own expenses, and while working his own crop has the free use of the plow animals and all the required plantation tools. The laborers have no claim on the planter's crop, but have absolute control of their own. By this arrangement the negroes obtain house, land, firewood, and the use for three days of every week of all the plantation animals and tools for three days' labor every week in cultivating the employer's crop. And the employer has all the expense of feeding the stock and keeping up the establishment. Those who have tried this plan says it works to the satisfaction of both parties, and gives to the laborer who behaves himself a permanent home and an interest in the place he cultivates, and avoids the dissatisfaction often attending a division of the crop.

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