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Valley of the Shadow

Staunton Spectator: December 16, 1862

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-Page 01-

Description of Page: Notices and advertisements, columns 1-6

Adjt. and Inst. Genl's Office
(Column 1)
Summary: Informs those who are absent from their commands that they must return immediately or be considered deserters.
By the Governor of Virginia
(Column 6)
Summary: Governor's proclamation requests that civil authorities aid in the conscription process.
Gov. Letcher and Reconstruction
(Column 7)
Summary: Reprints a letter from Governor Letcher denying allegations made by the Philadelphia Inquirer that he would favor a restoration of the Union if the Democrats were restored to power in the North.

-Page 02-

Description of Page: Various reports of battles and skirmishes, columns 1-5; advertisements and notices, columns 6 and 7

The Conflict at Fredericksburg
(Column 1)
Summary: Reports on the details of the battle at Fredericksburg.
Full Text of Article:

At five o'clock on Thursday morning last, the enemy, under the command of Burnside, at Fredericksburg, attempted to lay down pontoon bridges, on which to cross the Rappahannock, at three places. One at the site of this railroad bridge which spanned the river at the lower end of the town; another at the ford above the town, and between it and Falmouth, and the third below the mouth of Deep Run, which is about three miles below the city.

The attempts at the first names points were repulsed with considerable loss to the enemy, our sharpshooters and skirmishers co-operating with the artillery in the affair. At the lower point, the pontooniers were protected from the fire of our artillery by the river bluff, and the command of the position by the enemy's guns rendered sharpshooters unavailable. At this place, by six o'clock in the evening, the enemy commenced crossing.

At seven o'clock, it is supposed by the permission of Gen. Lee, the enemy crossed near the railroad bridge and took possession of Fredericksburg.

It is said that an entire company of our troops, on picket near the river, were surprised, and captured. Sharp skirmishing ensued in the streets of Fredericksburg, and about eight o'clock our forces relinguished [sic] [sic] the place to the enemy. During, or shortly after the skirmishing, the enemy fired the Post office and the Methodist church, Bank of Virginia and all the square was consumed. Citizens say there is scarcely a building in town that has not been struck with one or more shells. Of the several hundred citizens remaining in town, but three, women whose husbands had previously gone over to the enemy, remained, and claimed the protection of the Abolitionists.

On Friday there was considerable skirmishing and quite heavy artillery duelling [sic], but not general engagement.--It was well-known by the officers that an engagement would take place the next day, and Friday was spent in making arrangements for the bloody work. Saturday morning found our forces drawn up from opposite Fredericksburg to a distance of six miles eastward.--Longstreet's corps occupied the Highlands above, opposite, and for a mile below the town. Jackson's corps rested on Longstreet's right and extended away to the eastward, the extreme right under A. P. Hill crossing the railroad at Hamilton's crossing, and stretching into the valley towards the river.

At half-past eight, A. M., General Lee, attended by his staff, rode slowly along the front of four lines, from west to east, and halted in the valley a mile to the east of Hamilton's crossing, and half a mile in the rear of our batteries on the extreme right.

In a short time after this, the action was commenced by the artillery in the Stonewall Brigade. The artillery in the Stonewall Brigade. The artillery firing soon became general and terrific all along the line of battle. At noon the enemy advanced his infantry. As they pressed forward across the Valley, Stuart's horse artillery from our extreme right opened upon them a destructive enfilading fire of round shot. This fire, which annoyed them sorely, was kept up in spite of six batteries which were directed against the horse artillery as soon as it was unmasked. By one o'clock the Yankee columns had crossed the Valley and entered the woods south of the railroad. The batteries on both sides slackened their fire, and musketry at first scattering, but quickly increasing to a crash and roar, sounded thro' the woods. Dense volumes of smoke rose above the trees, and volley succeeded volley sometimes so rapidly as to blend into a prolonged and continuous roar. A. P. Hill's division sustained the first shock of battle.

The rest of Jackson's corps were in different lines of reserves. D. H. Hill's division was drawn up in J. L. Marye's field, under a long hill, in the rear of our line of battle.

Generals Hill and Early's troops drove the enemy from the woods and across the railroad in the direction of their pontoon bridges near Deep Run. Our men pursued them a mile and a half across the bottom land, and fell back only when they had gotten under the shelter of their batteries. Our troops then retired to the South side of the railroad. Again the enemy rallied and returned to renew the contest, but were again, about five o'clock P.M., driven back. All the batterries [sic] of Jackson's corps were at this time in full play, and in the approaching twilight the blaze of the guns and the quick flashes of the shells were more distinctly visible. The scene all along the valley was at once splendid and terrific.

The result of the fight on our right wing may be summed up briefly. We drove the enemy back, killing three to one, and at night held the ground occupied by the enemy's batteries in the morning. The enemy had 20,000 men engaged on this wing, while altogether, from first to last, we had not more than 10,000 in the line of fire.

Longstreet's victory was even more complete.

He drove the enemy into the streets of Fredericksburg, killing at least five to one. At dusk, the firing ceased simultaneously on both sides.

Brig. General Thomas R. R. Cobb, of Georgia, was killed by a shell on Saturday. Gen. [illegible] Gregg, of South Carolina, is reported severely wounded.--The Richmond Whig says: "We have heard various statements as to the losses on Saturday. It is believed that ours will not exceed 500 killed, and 2,500 wounded, while that of the enemy is far greater. It is currently reported that the Federal General Hooker is killed." We have heard it reported that the enemy's loss is from four to five times as great as ours.

The following despatch was received at the War Department at 9 o'clock, P. M., Saturday:

At 9 o'clock this morning, the enemy attacked our right wing, and as the fog [illegible] the battle ran along the line from [illegible] to left, until 6 P.M., the enemy [illegible] at all points--thanks be [illegible]. As usual, we have to mourn the loss of many brave men. I expect the battle will be resumed at daylight to-morrow morning.

R. E. LEE.

To General Cooper:
Gen. Hampton reports that he entered Dumfries and captured 20 wagons with stores, and took 50 prisoners, all of which he brought to the Rappahannock. Gen. Siegel is expected at Dumfries to-morrow.

R. E. LEE.

Donations for Soldiers
(Column 2)
Summary: Informs readers that the quartermaster of the 1st Brigade has offered to furnish transportation for any goods that the citizens of Augusta, Rockingham, and Rockbridge counties wish to send to soldiers in that brigade, which includes the 5th Va. Inf. Both general donations and items intended for particular soldiers will be accepted for transport.
Contributions for Col. Imboden's Command
(Column 2)
Summary: Implores citizens to donate clothing and blankets to the embattled regiment of Col. Imboden, whose men are refugees from homes confiscated by the enemy.
(Names in announcement: Col. Imboden, Rev. W. G. Campbell)
Election Returns
(Column 2)
Summary: Reports that Fulton has won the election for to replace William Tate in the legislature. The polls at some precincts, the Spectator reports, did not even open.
(Names in announcement: William M. Tate, Mr. Peyton, Mr. Fulton, Mr. Armey)
Yankee Depredations in Highland
(Column 2)
Summary: Reports that Northern troops recently confiscated one hundred horses, three hundred cattle, twenty slaves, a gold watch, and $2,000 to 3,000 in cash in Highland County. Lists other activities of enemy troops in that area.
A Word to Farmers about Extortion
(Column 3)
Summary: Exhorts against those farmers who sell their goods at highly inflated prices. Suggests that the government arrest all such "extortioners."
Military Officers and "Foolish Girls"
(Column 3)
Summary: Prints a letter from the Rockingham Register in which a woman criticizes "foolish girls" who admire officers who are safely in town while many genuine heroes are fighting in the field or suffering in the hospital.
Origin of Article: Rockingham Register
Full Text of Article:

A communication in the last Rockingham Register, signed "Mary," and dated Staunton, December the 10th., contains the following complimentary notice of the military officers and their feminine admirers of this place:

There rides an officer in Roman-like pride and consequence, flashing with gold and crimson; he passes on in magnificence and self-adulation, carrying with him the maiden's heart and tearful petitions for his safety. Pshaw! he is in no danger, dashing about town, and the enemy off there, miles away. Foolish girls, dazzled by a glittering uniform! I regret to class myself among your species of God's creatures. Better go to the hospitals, and there, with your gentle and soothing influence, relieve the suffering invalid yearning for the delicate attentions and beloved presence of those far away. This would be more like the noble mission of woman than sighing after military monkeys parading before your doors, showing their find and elegant persons to advantage, thinking how captivating they look, and of the many hearts (not battles,) they have won, to boast of, and, you girls might fall from the window or over the balcony, in the effort to catch a last glimpse, and they would grieve by saying "what a pity she had no more sense!"

Trailer: Mary
Army Letters
(Column 3)
Summary: Reports instructions from the postmaster regarding the proper way to address letters to members of the military so that they might have the best chance possible of reaching the soldier for whom they are intended.
Important Proclamation
(Column 3)
Summary: Calls attention to Gov. Letcher's proclamation that orders civil authorities to aid the military authorities in enforcing the conscript law. The law requires civil authorities to secure supplies for the army and slave labor for the public defense. The article praises Virginia for the cooperation it has give thus far to the Confederate government.
Full Text of Article:

We call attention to the proclamation of Governor Letcher, published in another column, calling upon the civil authorities in every county and neighborhood to aid the military authorities in enforcing the conscript law in furnishing supplies for the army, and in securing slave labor for the public defence, and recommending increased vigilance in domestic and county police. We are gratified to see the State and Confederate authorities co-operating in such perfect harmony in the common defence. Virginia in this sets a noble example for the emulation of other States. Virginia is the flag-ship of the Confederate States. She has reason to be proud of her gallant sons, and her sons have equal reason to be proud of her.

Reconstruction of the Union Impossible
(Column 4)
Summary: Declares adamantly that the South will never return to the Union, particularly after the South has learned the true nature of the United States government and the Northern people.
The Right Spirit
(Column 4)
Summary: Relates that a citizen has donated $100 for the benefit of the soldiers. The citizen has requested the money to be divided evenly between the 5th and 52nd Regiments, and Colonel Imboden's command.
(Names in announcement: Col. Imboden)
Contributions to the Soldier's Hospital Library
(Column 4)
Summary: Letter from George B. Taylor acknowledges those who have contributed books to the hospital library.
(Names in announcement: Mrs. Tate, Miss Edson, Mrs. Ann Berkeley, Mr. William Franger, Rev. William Baker, George Baylor)
Trailer: Geo. B. Taylor
For the Spectator
(Column 5)
Summary: Asks why some "favored" families in the county have received at least two sacks of salt, while others have received none.
Trailer: Citizen
The Committee for Collection in District No. 3
(Column 5)
Summary: Lists the members of the Collection Committee in district no. 3.
(Names in announcement: Miss Lucy Galt, Miss Armentrout, Miss Addie Lushbaugh, Miss Willie Harman, Miss Price, Miss Nannie Crawford, Miss Peggy Wardon, Miss Amanda Fultz, Miss Henrietta Brooks, Kate Waddell, Miss Sallie Fuller, Miss Sallie Trout, Miss Phillips, Miss Elisa Kinney, Miss Ella Taylor, Miss Edson, Miss Edmonia Ball, Mrs. George Hanger, Mrs. George Foage, Mrs. Cyrus Snapp, Miss Engleman, Miss Maggie Jane Edson, Mrs. Benajah Walters, Mrs. Jonathan Moyers, Mrs. Davidson, Mrs. William Shumate)
Mutiny in an Abolition Camp
(Column 5)
Summary: Reports a mutiny among soldiers in a Northern camp in North Carolina. Five hundred soldiers threw down their arms, declaring themselves Democrats unwilling to fight for abolition. The Raleigh paper claims that most of the soldiers escaped.
Origin of Article: Raleigh State Journal
Religious Notice
(Column 5)
Summary: Reports services to be held on December 21 and on Christmas Day at the Catholic Church.
(Column 5)
Summary: S. A. Hoshour, Esq., and Sarah C. Lamb, both of Staunton, were married on December 3.
(Names in announcement: S. A. HoshourEsq., Sarah C. Lamb)
(Column 5)
Summary: William Hite, aged 22 years, died at the Augusta County residence of his father, Gabriel Hite, on November 15. He died of a disease he had contracted while imprisoned at Camp Chase in Ohio.
(Names in announcement: William Hite, Gabriel Hite)
(Column 5)
Summary: George W. Imboden, 6 years of age, died of diphtheria at the residence of his grandfather on December 3. He was the son of Colonel J. D. and Eliza Imboden.
(Names in announcement: Col. J. D. Imboden, Eliza Imboden, George W. Imboden)
The Negro in the North
(Column 6)
Summary: Letter from a correspondent of the Chicago Times declares that he deplores slavery, but he suggests that, wherever they are, African Americans must labor under a master. Reports that "every candid man" believes blacks will be better off in the South than in the North.
Origin of Article: Chicago Times
Editorial Comment: "A correspondent of the Chicago Times, in a letter from the army in the West, says:"
Full Text of Article:

I have been quite as fortunate as Horace Greely in discovering "intelligent contrabands," and must acknowledge that I have found one or two sensible mulattoes, and they tell me that if they get no better treatment at the North than what they now receive from Northern soldiers, they had a thousand times better remain with their masters. And it is now generally conceded by every candid man, that every negro sent North will be much worse off than here. All I have to say is, God help the poor helpless negroes. I detest slavery, but I am frank to confess that I do not believe the negroes, generally, are capable of getting a living without a master, and, if they are allowed North, they must just as much be under a master as here.

Federal Rule in Nashville
(Column 6)
Summary: Reports that federal troops in Nashville are requiring citizens to take a loyalty oath and to post a bond. Those who refuse are to be sent outside federal lines. This requirement has been issued by Andrew Johnson and Rosencrans.
(Column 6)
Summary: Article reports with pride that homespun has become fashionable in the South in support of domestic industry.
List of Deserters from the 52nd Regiment Va. Volunteers.
(Column 6)
Summary: Lists deserters from the 52nd Va. Inf. and reports that there is a $20 reward for the return of each. Also listed are the deserters' commanding officers.
(Names in announcement: J. R. Argenbright, Jonathan L. Ayler, John S. Baylor, J. D. Beard, J. Cross, Gideon Fellows, W. C. Gwinn, G. W. Harronff, Jonas Heller, David S. Hunter, John T. Hunter, Samuel S. Johns, James M. Lamb, D. H. Loving, John H. Mesincun, Gideon Millstead, John D. Mooney, Richard Mooney, Annias Parr, William Rosserman, C. F. Cox, Julius Parish, St. Clair Taylor, Samuel Switzer, J. W. Alexander, T. H. Carter, W. Carpenter, J. D. Chandler, T. J. Clark, W. H. Clark, H. H. Dedrick, William Diddle, William H. Evans, James F. Fretwell, D. H. Gay, Frank Gardner, William H. Herndon, John F. Croft, John S. Lively, E. B. Morris, Asberry Myers, W. Offlighter, William L. Parent, J. G. Terrell, James G. Whitmore, D. T. Cale, R. T. Brooks, S. F. Cline, J. B. Cale, G. H. A. Curry, W. M. Daggy, E. Doyle, A. S. Fawber, Henry Gains, Jonathan Ham, Jesse Humphrey, William M. Jones, James A. Kerahner, William R. Miller, W. Mooney, Zeb Riddle, G. N. Rogers, F. Smelty, Thomas Smith, John C. Sprouse, Samuel H. Slusser, James M. Vint, Sgt. W. McNutt, John Brown, Samuel Bosserman, Benjamin Flick, W. M. Flick, R. S. Jones, N. B. Kerricoffe, A. Michael, H. Michael, H. W. Moore, J. Ralston, Jesse Rea, P. H. Reeves, R. Reeves, John S. Robinson, James Shipp, D. B. Stumbeck, J. O. Sulivane, William Temple, John Armstrong, Layne Camden, J. Cash, James S. Fisher, J. A. Smith, Joseph Robert Clarke, Samuel Dale, William A. Ford, William P. Long, William N. Reed, D. B. Crousehorn, James H. Craun, J. Huffman, German Loyd, Frank Shifflet, Jonathan Stover, J. Wenger, D. N. Barger, J. W. Coly, George Clater, William Clater, J. B. Coyner, J. G. Hume, James D. Miller, James Mullen, James M. Marshall, John Pullena, Leonard Showalter, J. Shaner, M. C. Taylor, James Treedmarsh, James A. White, Daniel Tyler, James E. Byrd, T.H. Craus, Jacob Caron, H. Elinger, B. Gibson, H. Ingram, Joseph Ingram, J. Jackson, Samuel Lambert, C. F. Miller, William Montgomery, D. Sprouse, Peter Sprouse, G. W. Taylor, John Wiseman, John Webber, John Davis, E. F. Grim, Jonathan Hasher, L. B. Kesterson, J. F. Miller, C. E. Mays, J. M. Strickler, A. M. Burns, M. M. Burns, Alex Curry, F. S. Curry, J. W. Garrison, W. W. Gillespie, J. A. Kesterson, Thomas Jones, Samuel Sneed, James M. Rider, J. J. Thomas, Thomas Williams, Capt. Robert C. Davis, Capt. A. J. Thompson, Capt. Joseph Coyner, Capt. A. Airhart, Capt. Thomas Watkins, Capt. James Bumgardner, Capt. E. Bateman, Lieut. James Dold, John M. Humphreys, Lieut. Gillet)
A Card
(Column 7)
Summary: An ad from the Central Committee asks for contributions and gives instructions regarding donations. Names are of committee members.
(Names in announcement: A. J. Garber, William G. Campbell, J. C. Wheat, J. C. Wheeler, D. M. Gilbert)
[No Title]
(Column 7)
Summary: Announces that a civil suit filed by Samuel Finley against John Givens will be transferred to Givens's heirs, since he is now deceased. The suit involves a small plot of land whose ownership is contested by Finley and the Givens family.
(Names in announcement: Samuel B. Finley, John Givens)