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Valley of the Shadow

Staunton Spectator: December 17, 1861

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-Page 01-

Description of Page: Various reports of battles, skirmishes, and military maneuvers, much of it from Missouri. Portions of page not clearly legible.

Another Victory
(Column 1)
Summary: Report of a battle in western Virginia involving the 52nd Regiment, which claims as members several Augusta County companies. The battle, a Confederate victory according to the Spectator, will certainly be misreported by the Northern press, says the Spectator.
(Names in announcement: Capt. R.D. Lilley, Barkins, Welch)
Full Text of Article:

We have the satisfaction to announce a most brilliant victory gained by our troops upon the Alleghany Mountain on Friday last.

For several days before the fight, parties of our men had been actively scouting the road down to Greenbrier River. The first party under Captain Watkins of the 52d Va. Regiment pursued a party of the Yankees far enough to ascertain that they made most excellent time when turned toward their own camp on Cheat. The next party under Captain Dabney, also of the 52d Regiment, overhauled a party of the enemy and routed them--killing one, wounding one, and taking two prisoners. The next party under Major Ross, also of the 52d Regiment, fell in with a number of the enemy and killed some fifteen or twenty of them. In all these affairs none of our men were hurt.

On Friday morning, the enemy having collected from Cheat mountain and beyond some four or five thousand men attempted to surprise and capture the position on the Alleghany mountain held by some fifteen hundred of our men under command of Col. Edward Johnson of the 12th Georgia Regiment. In this attempt, they found that they had emphatically "waked up the wrong passenger." They drove in our pickets about four o'clock in the morning, and made an attack upon both flanks of our position.

Having come so far for a fight, it is but just to say that they fought well and obstinately; but after a sharp and severe conflict of about seven hours they were driven back and completely routed.

We have not, as yet, been able to gather the details of the battle, but enough is known to satisfy us that the fight was a gallant one, and well sustained, and that the victory was complete.

No accurate list of the casualties attending this victory has been received as yet. Our loss in killed and wounded is reported at about eighty of whom near twenty were killed. Among the killed and wounded we have to mourn some gallant officers--Captains Anderson and Mildraugh, and Lieutenants Thompson and Moore.

The loss of the enemy was very heavy, and they left some of their killed and wounded upon the field.

We have the satisfaction to announce to those having friends in the 52d Regiment that, altho' bearing their part in the engagement, and behaving with calm courage and spirit, not one officer or man belonging to it was injured, except two members of Capt. John D. Lilley's Company, Barkins and Welch, who were wounded in the legs in the picket fight which preceded the battle.

We have many rumors of feats of individual gallantry and daring, which it would perhaps be premature to publish; but we cannot be mistaken in saying that with one accord it is agreed that Col. Johnson bore himself throughout with distinguished gallantry--leading on his men in the thick of the fight with a disregard of personal danger, which warmed the hearts and nerved the arms of all his men.

As we give the Federals credit for consistency in misrepresentation, we expect to see in a short time, a dispatch of the following character published in the Northern papers:

"The War Department at Washington has received a despatch stating that on Friday, the 13th inst., the Federals on Cheat Mountain made a "reconnoissance [sic] in force," took the "rebels" on the top of the Alleghany mountain by surprise, killed a great many of them, with but slight loss to the "loyal" force, and, having accomplished the object of the reconnoisance [sic], retired in good order to their camp on Cheat Mountain."

Newspapers "Hard Up"
(Column 1)
Summary: Item reports that many Virginia newspapers have been forced to either decrease or cease publication altogether during the war, among them the Staunton Vindicator.
Full Text of Article:

We learn from Clarke County Conservator that in the counties of Clarke, Frederick, Jefferson, Berkeley; Morgan, Hampshire, Shenandoah, Page, Warren, Rockingham, Augusta and Loudoun, there were published before the war, twenty-three newspapers. Now we know of but seven that are published in these counties, only three of which are published regularly every week, and all, with one exception, considerably reduced in dimensions. Those entirely discontinued, are the Berryville Journal, Charlestown Spirit of Jefferson, and Independent Democrat, Shepherdstown Register, Martinsburg American, Berkeley Springs Constitution, Romney Intelligencer and Argus, Piedmont Independent, Woodstock Tenth Legion , Luray Review, Front Royal Gazette, Harrisonburg Citizen, Valley Democrat, Staunton Vindicator and Leesburg Mirror. The balance are published occasionally. Though the times thus ruin the Press of the State, and though Editors are compelled to pay three and four times as much as they need to do for articles necessary to publish a newspaper, yet there are some few inconsiderate and unreasonable persons who complain of those who keep their papers in existence by the publication of half-sheets.

The Steamer Nashville
(Column 1)
Summary: Item reports that a Confederate steamer successfully ran the blockade.
Destructive Fire in Charleston
(Column 2)
Summary: Discusses a fire in Charleston, South Carolina. The Confederate government sent aid to the victims of the fire.
Archbishop Hughes
(Column 2)
Summary: Reports that Archbishop Hughes went to Europe on behalf of the Catholic Church to seek European help in securing peace and recognition of the Confederacy.
[No Title]
(Column 2)
Summary: Reports that John Kinney, a citizen of Staunton who is from Charleston, has been taking donations for the relief of the victims of that city's fire.
(Names in announcement: John Kinney)
[No Title]
(Column 2)[No Title]
(Column 2)
Summary: Reports that the secession government of Kentucky was admitted to the Confederacy by the Confederate Congress.
Provisional Congress--An Important Bill
(Column 3)
Summary: A bill passed by the Confederate Congress grants a bounty of ninety dollars to those who serve in the army for three years. It also provides sixty day furloughs to those on one-year enlistments who re-enlist for two more years.
Prisoners Released
(Column 3)
Summary: Reports that 30 Southern prisoners were released from Washington and arrived in Charleston.
[No Title]
(Column 3)
Summary: Reports that Commodore Levy, the owner of Monticello, made his will and is leaving Monticello and $100,000 to the government.
Gen. Lane and Col. Montgomery
(Column 4)
Summary: Provides a brief biography of the two Yankee officers, Lane and Montgomery.
Origin of Article: New York Times
[No Title]
(Column 4)
Summary: Acknowledges donations to the General Hospital at Staunton.
(Names in announcement: Mrs. Abraham Garber, Mrs. C. Francisco, Mrs. Patterson)
Contributions for Soldiers
(Column 4)
Summary: Letter acknowledges contributions to soldiers received by W. G. Campbell.
(Names in announcement: Mrs. Kelan, G.W. McDaniel, W.G. Campbell)
Trailer: W. G. Campbell
[No Title]
(Column 4)
Summary: Directs those who wish to donate to the Staunton Artillery to drop boxes off at George Price's store.
(Names in announcement: George Price)
[No Title]
(Column 5)
Summary: Reports an anecdote from Wheeling that some officers of the Unionist Virginia regiment are boarding with the wife of a secessionist editor, who had fled.
Origin of Article: Wheeling Intelligencer
Camp Near Staunton, VA
(Column 6)
Summary: Letter from the Maryland Guards thanking the people of Staunton for their donations and hospitality.
(Names in announcement: Mrs. M.B. Galt, Mrs. William Campbell, Mrs. R.H. Phillips)
(Column 6)
Summary: Ellen and Catharine Ann McNamara died of diphtheria on December 12. Ellen was 6 years old and Catharine Ann was 9 years old.
(Names in announcement: Ellen McNamara, Catharine Ann McNamara, Patrick McNamara, Ellen McNamara)
(Column 6)
Summary: John Johnson died on October 25 at age 7. He was the fifth child of Mr. and Mrs. Johnson to die at a young age.
(Names in announcement: John Johnson, William Johnson, Margaret Johnson)
To the Tax-Payers of the Confederate States
(Column 7)
Summary: John Grills and Samuel Harper will meet taxpayers to clarify the Confederate tax laws.
(Names in announcement: John Grills, Samuel Harper)

-Page 02-

Description of Page: Advertisements

Terrible Tragedy in Mississippi--Two Men Killed and Several Wounded
(Column 1)
Summary: Item reports a feud in Mississippi between the Edwards and Grey families.
(Column 1)
Summary: Reports that the price of salt is skyrocketing.