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Valley of the Shadow

Semi-Weekly Dispatch: February 21, 1862

Go To Page : 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |

-Page 01-

Description of Page: Advertisements, columns 1-3; details on the Union victory at Fort Donelson, columns 4 and 5, continued on page 2

-Page 02-

Description of Page: Continuation of the article from page 1 that contains the details of the Union victory at Fort Donelson, column 1; repeat of information about Fort Donelson, report that France will not support the Confederacy, column 3; news from Fort Donalson, Cairo, Washington, column 5

Paying Dearly for Their Whistle
(Column 1)
Summary: Notes that the British Government has spent about 20 million dollars in preparation for possible hostilities due to the Trent affair.
"Let Us Be Consistent"
(Column 2)
Summary: Disputes the Valley Spirit's claim that the country was prosperous and at peace when the Republicans took office by arguing that Lincoln was forced to wage war against the seceded states because James Buchanan did not put a halt to secession during his administration.
Full Text of Article:

In an article in the Spirit of last week, under the above caption, appears the following shameless falsehood, by way of showing, we presume, that its new editor may be relied on to be as "consistent" in uttering unblushing falsehoods, with reference to political opponents, in the future, as any of his predecessors have been in the past. The Spirit says--

"When the Republican party came into power the country was prosperous and at peace. Now, one half is in the full blaze of rebellion, while the other half is in a fair way of becoming bankrupted in putting it down."

Comment upon the above is, indeed, unnecessary, but we cannot refrain from making a few remarks. A specious of madness must certainly revel in the brain of the man who can recklessly assert, in the face of a reading, intelligent public, at this early day of the rebellion, that "when the Republican party came into power [the 4th of March, last,] the country was prosperous and at peace"! when it is so well known to all who are not wilfully ignorant, that at least seven or eight States had passed Secession ordinances--had seized national forts, arsenals, vessels, and mints--had planted batteries, and were in open rebellion against the government long before Mr. Lincoln was inaugurated.

Screen the faithless and guilty parties as much as you can--blink the question as you may, the country will hold those leaders of the Democratic party who adhered to the Buchanan Administration, and who afterwards followed the fortunes of the rebel, John C. Breckinridge, to the very verge of the pit into which he plunged, as responsible for the rebellion and its attendant horrors and impoverishing results, and not the Republican party, which was not in power when the house was fired by the incendiary's torch.

When James Buchanan transfered [sic] the Government over to Abraham Lincoln, there was scarcely a particle of soundness in it. From the crown of the head to the soles of the feet the whole body politic presented nothing but a mass of reeking corruption, treason and infidelity--the whole head was sick and the whole heart faint. Such being the almost hopeless condition of the patient when given up by the Democratic quack Doctors to the Republican party, the most active and powerful remedial prescriptions had to be resorted to immediately, to revive and restore the wasted and almost ruined health of the Government, brought about by the mal-practice of those who had the charge of it. It was a case of life or death, and a halting, equivocating cowardly policy, (such as had been practiced by the Buchanans, the Brights the Guins, and other Democrats like them,) was altogether inadmissable [sic].--"An ounce of preventive," we are told, "is worth a pound of cure," and as James Buchanan failed to administer the "ounce of preventative," thus permitting the disease to obtain such a fearful headway as to throw the patient into almost a collapsed condition, it became the duty of Abraham Lincoln and the Republican party to administer the "pound of cure," and if it is a terrible dose, the country has James Buchanan, and the Democratic leaders who surround him, to thank for it.

The Rebellion at once assumed the most threatening and gigantic proportions, to meet which

The People looked to Mr. Lincoln to preserve the Union and the Constitution, and no mincing or milk and water measures would do it. An army, in numbers altogether unlike anything known in our history, had to be thrown into the field, armed, equipped and fed; a navy had also to be provided and put afloat; arms of every description had to be manufactured and procured from abroad, in a word, the exigencies were such, that the most extraordinary expenditures had to be made in haste, and without that consideration and attention which the public interests would have demanded in ordinary times. But the Buchanan Administration having left the Government in such a terrible condition, that if the life of the patient was to be saved, movements had to be made quickly. There was no time left for a higgling [sic] policy. The expenditures for the public service amounted to hundreds of millions, and that frauds were perpetrated upon the Government by Army Contractors, in every shape and form, for the purpose of enriching themselves, and, to that extent, depleting the Treasury, there is not a doubt; but that any party that ever existed in this country has shown a more fixed determination to put an end to corruption by ferreting out and punishing offenders than the one now in power, we do not believe. If there ever was, it is very evident it is not the modern Democracy.

In view, then, of the foregoing facts, what must be the regard for truth of the man who can assert that.

"When the Republican party came into power, the country was prosperous and at peace."

The Offer of Mason and Slidell to Abolish Slavery
(Column 3)
Summary: Reports that Mason and Slidell have indicated that the South would be willing to abolish slavery as a condition for England and France agreeing to recognize the Confederacy. Questions whether this gesture is made in good faith and whether the Confederacy would in fact follow through with abolition. Also points out that this action suggests that disunion is more important to the rebels than is slavery and questions whether the ordinary people of the South would go along with such a proposition.
Origin of Article: Forney's Press
Savannah Captured
(Column 4)
Summary: Reports information learned from naval dispatches stating that Savannah has been taken by Union forces.
Cotton Declining
(Column 5)
Summary: Notes that the price of cotton goods is decreasing and suggests that the United States will no longer bow to King Cotton.
Full Text of Article:

Among the significant signs of the times in commercial circles is the rapid decline in the price of several kinds of cotton goods. The day is rapidly approaching, when, instead of cotton-ing to King Cotton, the sovereign people of the United States will find him one of their most humble and submissive subjects.

[No Title]
(Column 5)
Summary: Asserts that the Republican party, more than "any party ever existing in the country," has investigated charges of corruption within the government, even if those who were found out turned out to be Republicans.
Origin of Article: Lebanon Courier

-Page 03-

Description of Page: advertisements, columns 3-5

Suspension of Business
(Column 1)
Summary: Urges that no business be conducted or work done in Chambersburg on February 22 on the occasion of George Washington's birthday.
(Column 1)
Summary: Announces that Private Edward E. Brennand, a member of the Scott Rifles Company of Pittsburg when they were stationed at Camp Slifer, has been promoted to a Master mateship on the gunboat Carondolet for his bravery in the Belmont engagement.
Too Fast
(Column 1)
Summary: Acknowledges that the Dispatch reported the fall of Fort Donelson to the Union two days before it actually occurred. Points out, in response to the Valley Spirit's chiding, that the Spirit perpetually prints news a week or ten days after it has occurred.
Full Text of Article:

On the strength of what appeared to be reliable news, we announced, by an extra, on the 14th inst., that Fort Donelson had fallen into the hands of the Federal troops, with a large number of prisoners. It turned out afterwards that we were a day or two too fast, and upon this the Spirit "gives a ghastly grin." We were not the only party, however, that were premature in making such an announcement, as we see that at other points, and especially at Cincinnati, a similar announcement had been made on the same day. As it turns out, however, the capitulation of the enemy took place on the 16th, so that we were not so far out of the way.

The community would be hard up for news if it had to rely upon the columns of the Spirit for it. This is probably the reason for its bad humor. An examination of its columns will show that the reader, who depends upon the Spirit for information with regard to passing events, is from a week to ten days behind the times; but doubtless, if the Federal arms should meet with a Bull Run reverse at Columbus, or some other point on the Mississippi river, its readers would be informed speedily by an extra.

(Column 2)
Summary: Reports that a newborn was found dead in a cesspool on the property of a citizen residing in the upper part of Chambersburg. The alleged mother of the child has been arrested.
The 22d of February
(Column 2)
Summary: Remarks that the birthday of George Washington will be an occasion that calls for an even more joyous celebration than during previous years.
Order of Procession
(Column 2)
Summary: Outlines the order in which those involved in the procession will appear and lists the order of events that will comprise the flag-raising ceremony on the Diamond.
Full Text of Article:

The Committee to make Arrangements for the proper Celebration of the 22d of February, by our citizens, have adopted the following Order of Procession:

The Procession will be under the Marshalship of Capt. John Jeffries.

The Procession will form at 11 1/2 o'clock, on South Main Street; the Right resting on the Diamond.

The Three Months' Volunteers--Capt. Doebler--with martial music.
Friendship Fire Co.
Brass Band.
Hope Fire Company.

The Procession will move up Market St. to Franklin; counter-march to Main; up Main, to Catherine; down Catherine, to Second; down Second to the North Point; then up Main to the Diamond, where arrangements will be made for the raising of the Flag, under the following Order:

1. Raising the Stars and Stripes, by Geo. W. Snider.
2. Firing by the Three Months' Men.
3. Star Spangled Banner. - - - - Band.
4. America. - - - - - - - - - - - Ladies.
5. Washington's Farewell Address, Reve. Harden.
6. Music. - - - - - - Brass Band.
7. Address. - - - - W. S. Everett.
8. Star Spangled Banner. - - Ladies.

The Procession will form in line again down Market St. to Second, and there dismiss.

The Capture of Fort Donelson
(Column 2)
Summary: Commends the Union army and its troops for the victory at Fort Donelson.
Origin of Article: Philadelphia Press
[No Title]
(Column 3)
Summary: Echoes the Philadelphia Press's commendation of the Union forces for the most recent victory.
(Column 3)
Summary: Mr. P. Dock Frey and Miss Emma E. Scheible, both of Chambersburg, were married on February 19.
(Names in announcement: Mr. P. Dock Frey, Miss Emma E. Scheible)
(Column 3)
Summary: Mr. John D. Boggs and Miss Susan E. Baughman, both of Fayettville, were married on February 6.
(Names in announcement: Mr. John D. Boggs, Miss Susan E. Baughman)
(Column 3)
Summary: Mrs. Hannah Plough, aged 42 years, died in Chambersburg of consumption on February 16. She was the wife of Mr. John Plough of Chambersburg.
(Names in announcement: Mrs. Hannah Plough, Mr. John Plough)
(Column 3)
Summary: Mr. Samuel Radebaugh, aged about 68, died in Chambersburg on February 19 following a brief but painful illness.
(Column 3)
Summary: Mrs. Fanny Eagle, aged 70 years, died in Hamilton township on February 16. She was the consort of the late Peter Eagle.
(Names in announcement: Mrs. Fanny Eagle, Peter Eagle)

-Page 04-

Description of Page: Proceedings of Congress, column 1; prices current, column 2; advertisements, columns 2-5