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Valley of the Shadow

Staunton Spectator: March 10, 1863

Go To Page : 1 | 2 |

-Page 01-

Description of Page: Majority of page ads. Col. 4 - 7 Congressional and Legislative records.

(Column 7)
Summary: Item criticizes speculators and praises the soldier's aid societies that benefit the troops.

-Page 02-

Description of Page: Various battlefield reports and reports of troops movements. Col. 5 telegraphic dispatches. Remainder of page ads and notices including list of letters remaining at Post Office.

Washington's view of Impressment
(Column 1)
Summary: Item criticizes the recent impressment of crops by the Confederate government, Item quotes Washington on this issue.
Concert at the Virginia Female Institute
(Column 1)
Summary: Item reports that a concert at the Virginia Femal Institute netted $325 for the relief of the Fredricksburg sufferers.
Hanger's L.E.G.
(Column 1)
Summary: Item reports on a confederate soldier who, after losing his leg in battle, manufactured his own artificial limb rather than rely on "the Yankees for an artificial leg".
Full Text of Article:

The first conflict of arms in this destructive war in which blood was spilt occurred at Phillippa, in Barbour county, on Monday morning, the 3rd day of June, 1861. It will be remembered that two of our gallant soldiers, Leroy P. Dangerfield, jr., of Bath county, and Jas. Hanger, of this county, each lost a leg in that unfortunate surprise and defeat. Mr. Hanger, being possessed of good mechanical ingenuity, and too patriotic to be dependent upon the Yankees for an artificial leg, invented by his own genius, and manufactured by his own skill, an artificial leg, by which he is enabled to walk with ease. Though this feat of skill reflects great credit upon the inventor and manufacturer, yet we cannot indulge in the extravagant praise of the Editor of the Vindicator, who, in his last issue, said, "It is one of the most complete legs we have ever seen." We infer from this, that his extreme modesty has confined his observation to his own "drum sticks," for it seems that,

The "most complete" limb he did ever see
Was Hanger's wooden L.E.G.

Concert by the Band
(Column 1)
Summary: Item reports that a concert given by the Staunton 5th VA. Regiment band raised $400 for the benefit of the soldier's families.
(Names in announcement: William A. Burnett)
Lincoln's Conscript Bill
(Column 2)
Summary: Item reports the passage of the Northern conscript bill. The Spectatormarks this as another example of the desent into tyranny by the Lincoln Administration.
Full Text of Article:

Lincoln's Conscript Bill was amended in the House, and sent back to the Senate, where the House amendment was concurred in, and the bill passed with only six votes against it. Of the two Senators from the bogus State of Western Virginia, Wiley voted for and Carlisle against it.

That the skies are now dark there can be no denying. We should prepare to meet the crisis with courage and fortitude. The Richmond Examiner says that "the inauguration of an absolute sovereign over the Northern States of the late Union, has a signification of vital importance to every man and woman in this country. The official publication of the fact makes plain, to the humblest understanding, the nature and duration of the war. Scraps of Northern Newspapers, the declamations of individuals in the North, and our own universal and sincere desire for peace, lose the power of delusion in the presence of this solid reality. While it was possible to regard the Union as a republic, governed by the representatives of the people, it was also possible to believe that the evils of war would create a party among the people, that would force the Government to terminate the struggle on reasonable terms and within a limited time. But now that the Government has rendered itself entirely independent of the people and its representatives--now that the last relic of the Republican Constitution has been abolished, and absolute power declared by Congress and proclaimed by the press to have been openly substituted, it is beyond question that the duration of the war depends on the will of Lincoln and his councillors. None need be told that these men will not consent to any terms of peace. Setting aside considerations of passion, it is enough to know that Lincoln has been invested with a sovereign power over one of the greatest countries of the world, on the expressed ground that he will destroy the Southern people, and take their property for distribution among his followers. The moment he departs from this purpose, the sword and purse drop from his hands, and he will be torn to pieces by his own dogs. Therefore, while he stands on the bad eminence where he is now placed, he will fight us with an inveterate determination and with unchangeable cruelty. While Lincoln is President-dictator, and the North contains a man or a dollar, they will be used to carry on the war."

Northern Hypocrisy Exposed
(Column 2)
Summary: A quote from the New York world denouncing Northern violations of civil liberty.
Manhood Tested
(Column 2)
Summary: Item ridicules those who were anxious for war and a chance to prove their military prowess but now, in the face of hostilities, dodge service in the military.
Full Text of Article:

The Richmond Examiner truly says that "this war has thoroughly tested the true manhood of our people. When our country was blessed with peace and plenty, there was a class of chivalrous knights of the Don Quixote school, who despised the usual routine of business, and desired, above all things, that an opportunity might be granted them to display their fighting qualities. They were very blood-thirsty at the beginning of the war, and expressed the strongest desire to literally eat up ten times their number of live Yankees. But now, that the time has arrived when every man can serve his country, and the chance of promotion is free to all who distinguish themselves, these mighty men of Mars, these warriors par excellence have tried every expedient, rather than face the bullets of the enemy, to keep out of the army."

Plant Corn
(Column 2)
Summary: Item encourages citizens to plant corn on any available land they have available.
The Ensuing Campaign.
(Column 3)
Summary: Article suggests that, with the approach of spring, military activity will resume on an unparalleled scale.
Full Text of Article:

Early in the month of April, it may be expected that the great campaigns of the East and West will re-open with unexampled activity. Certainly it has not been from want of the means, or motives, or strength to fight, that the powerful armies of Lee and Hooker, of Bragg and Rosencrans, have camped for months in close proximity without a cannonade and almost without a skirmish. Now that the condition of the ground permits the passage of cannon and the march of columns, what both parties regards as the trial scene of the war, will be speedily witnessed. The next two months will be signalized by the most terrible battles of modern times.

We have no fear for the general result of the approaching campaign. The Confederate armies have never been equal to what they now are. The preludes of the coming collision which have already been witnessed are most encouraging. Wherever they have touched, the Southern troops have made their mark. Every affair indicates the high spirit which animates the Confederate army; and the weakness or demoralized condition of the enemy is equally evident.

In truth the field of the military affairs in all quarters is bright with hope. Yet it cannot be denied that the sentiment of the country at this moment, though not despondent, is serious and even sombre. It is affected by the political complexion of the Northern States. The revolution in the Constitution of their Government, consummated by the passage of the military and financial bills through Congress, has destroyed the expectation of a termination of the war for years to come, and renders any other conclusion than that of our own destruction, or exhaustion and anarchy in the North, less than probable. We have a long and gloomy perspective of danger and desolation before us. This prospect does not inspire gayety of heart, and the ideas it suggests are illustrated in the prodigious rise in gold. --Examiner.

Plant Corn! Plant Corn!
(Column 3)
Summary: Another article emploring farmers to plant corn and "utterly renounce cotton and tobacco..
(Column 3)
Summary: Richmond Whig declares its greater mistrust of the Northern Democrats, who make apparently friendly advances, than of the openly hostile abolitionists.
Origin of Article: Richmond Whig
Northern News
(Column 4)
Summary: Various items of news from the North.
Willful Violation of the Constitution
(Column 4)
Summary: New York "World" exhorts suspension of civil liberties in the North.
Origin of Article: New York "World"
The Yankees and their Colored Brethren at Pensacola
(Column 6)
Summary: Article reports a bloody fight in the streets of Pensalcola between New York and Maine regiments relative to the treatment of Negroes.
(Column 6)
Summary: Marriage of Sarah Baker to an Alabama man.
(Names in announcement: Sarah Baker, Rev. Joe R. Wheeler)