Staunton Spectator: March 24, 1868Go To Page : 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |
Prepare for the Contest
(Column 05)Summary: Urges white voters to organize to defeat the Constitution put forth by the state constitutional Convention in Richmond. Warns that a failure to vote against the Constitution will mean an end to white rule in Virginia.
Origin of Article: Roanoke TimesFull Text of Article:Grim Picture for the Eyes of Poor Men
The sweeping clause adopted by the Black and Tan Convention, now assembled in Richmond, by which Fifty Thousand of the best men in Virginia are to be disfranchised, is an act of such Radical villainy that it will make the blood mantle to the cheek of every lover of constitututional liberty and of his native land. The object is so transparent that none can fail to see that it is to substitute the negro for the white man and place Virginia - the land of and Henry and Madison -under negro dominion the white men of Virginia submit to submit? The Constitution may be forced even after they have expressed their tion of its provisions, as in Alabama; but the time will come when the people will assert their rights - the bayonet cannot rule for ever. Anywhere, we would remind our readers that notwithstanding the disfranchising clause there are white voters enough in the State to defeat the Constitution, if they are only true to themselves and their race. Thank God -- not the Convention - this wholesale disfranchisement cannot affect the vote against the Constitution, because all who are properly Registered can vote either for or against the iniquitous, unjust, and tyrannical instrument. There is no mistake about this - let the white people take courage, gird on their armor, and prepare for the contest. The Constitution will soon be presented for your acceptance or rejection - the issue involved is momentous - whether you are to be freemen or slaves; whether your sons are to be ground under the iron heel of despotism and the negro substituted in his stead, or whether they are to remain free.
People of Virginia - if you wish to preserve your liberty and transmit the inestimable right to your children, you must rise in your might and teach the despicable tyrants at Richmond that all their efforts to yankeedoodleize Virginia are in vain - that come weal or woe the white race must rule. Organize, then, organize - all is not lost - and by vigorous, determined, and united action you may postpone the day of your enthralment and ultimately wrest from tyrants who would trample upon you the rights they have usurped.
Congress has passed a law of grave import - they have authorized the State Convention to provide for the elections of members of Congress as well as all State officers at the time the vote is taken upon the question of ratifying the Constitution. None but the very best men should be presented for any office, either State or National; and as the Convention cannot determine who is to vote on the Constitution, it follows that you must defeat the one and elect the other. This is the last chance you will be offered, and if you prefer negro magistrates, negro tax collectors and so on, stay at home, gentlemen, and you will have fastened the shackles upon yourselves and your children which naught but blood can unloose. This is no idle vaporing - the disfranchisement of 50,000 white voters as effectually enslaves your children as if the deed were already done. You can prevent it --- will you do it? -- Roanoke Times
(Column 05)Summary: Argues that the Radical party of Virginia is seeking to pass a Constitution that would reform the education system so as to place the children of the poor in the company of the "depraved and abandoned". Urges readers to vote down the Constitution.
Origin of Article: Norfolk VirginianFull Text of Article:Virginia Africanized is no Longer Virginia
We cannot picture to ourselves, the results which will accrue if the Radical party of Virginia gets possession of the State. No fancy-- not that of an Opium Eater in the horrors of his derangement, can paint for us the realities of Africanization. The dissolution of all social order follows, fraud, theft, wrong, oppression, outrage, violence, chaos, all follow; but there is one consequence which our people may well consider in advance.
It addresses itself to the poor men more directly than any others, and involves the future of their children. Let it be borne in mind, let it be pondered over, let it be discussed, let it be proclaimed from the house tops, that the whole system of education in the South is to be remodeled, and the principle of "equality" introduced. Look at the effects of this. It means that the poor man's child - boy or girl - shall sit down cheek by jowl with the depraved and abandoned.
It means that this attendance upon schools, which will be taught by strong-minded women and nose talking men, shall be compulsory, and that under the supervision of a black police.
This is a grim picture, but it is one upon which the people of Georgia, and Louisiana, and North Carolina, look as far as the law goes; it is one of which we have been duly warned by the report of the committee on education in the Richmond Convention, and it behooves us all to study this question in all its bearings in time to avert so great a calamity
Who would submit to it? How would we resist? The plain path to escape this awful degradation which would dishonor us through the corruption of our children, is before us. Let every man turn out when the time comes and vote down the Constitution which would debase his child.
(Column 06)Summary: Criticizes the effort to bring Virginia back into the Union by "means of white disfranchisement and negro enfranchisement". Argues that such efforts ignore the historical role played by white Virginians, as well as their inherited rights. Claims that the North is acting out of fear of the South.
Origin of Article: Richmond WhigFull Text of Article:Politics and the South
If Virginia shall be carried back into the Union by means of white disfranchisement and negro enfranchisement, it will not be the restoration of Virginia to the Union, but the exclusion of the whites, who made Virginia what she was, and the admission of her negro population. It was not the mere land and water that made Virginia a State, and entered into the compact that created the Union. These were inanimate things that could not consent to anything. It was the white men, women, and children that made the Commonwealth, and the negroes were their property, sold to them as such by the New England slave traders. -They no more formed a constituent part of the State than did the horses and cattle that were owned by their masters. These slaves, who were not recognized as citizens either by the constitution of the State or the constitution of the United States, are now made voters, and by their votes the process of reconstruction and restoration is to be perfected against the wishes and the suffrage of the whites, who alone were the citizens and who constituted the State. We, therefore, say it will not be Virginia that will be restored to the Union when the blacks of Virginia are admitted. It will be another and different community, which should be named New Africa and not Virginia.
There is a vague idea in the Northern mind that the restoration of the Southern States to the Union can by some sort of juggling process be made to go hand in hand with the destruction of the rights of Southern whites. The groundless fear, that should the Southern States be restored upon the old white basis, the whites will endeavor by some sort of combination to take their revenge upon the North, is at the bottom of this project. Having gotten us down and trampled upon, they are afraid to let us get upon our feet again. Their consciences tell them that they have acted ungenerously towards us, and this sense of guilt makes them timorous. They tremble when they discern that "manhood in our look which murder cannot kill." They mistake our natural efforts to arise from the earth and escape from our restraints and burdens for indications of hostility to them, and so place our negroes over us to hold us down, and reward them for doing so by bestowing upon them the franchise which we inherited from our ancestors. This is Northern courage and magnanimity - this is Northern justice towards a people whose fathers fought for seven long years side by side with their fathers to establish American independence; to a State which gave them a Washington, a Jefferson, a Marshall, and a long line of sages and heroes, and donated an empire out of which numerous States have been carved! - Rich Whig
(Column 06)Summary: Argues that Southerners are highly involved in politics primarily because they are concerned that the Radicals will institute negro rule throughout the South.
Origin of Article: Richmond WhigFull Text of Article:[No Title]
If the people of the Southern States appear to concern themselves unduly about political affairs, the fault, if fault there be, is chargeable to the Radicals in Congress. The universal desire among the whites of the South is to go to work and make crops that will pay debts and taxes, and yield a support for their families. -The reconstruction acts, and the military orders in pursuance of them, require elections to be held with a view to reorganization and restoration, and suffrage is accorded to the whites. If they refuse to vote they will be accused of sullenness, if they vote for negro supremacy, they will disgrace themselves, and the only conscientious votes they cast are against negroes, mean whites and Africanization. They feel that if the constitutions which are being framed shall be ratified, they will be at the mercy of a race without education, property or sympathy, and that they will be degraded and ruined. If they did not, when required to register and vote, use all possible instrumentalities to defeat such constitutions, they would be false to every instinct of their nature. The struggle into which they have been precipitated. will, is not against the Government restoration to the Union- to the Government, and anxiously and to the Union. It is simply against macy that their efforts are directed, and these efforts they have a right to make by virtue of the reconstruction laws which confer suffrage upon them.
We repeat - the Southern people have been forced into this contest against their wishes, and can only act as they are acting. But for the negroism with which they are threatened they would be . They might vote if any other issue were presented, simply to show that they are not sullen and toward the Government, but beyond voting they would not desire to go. Their wish is that the white people of the North, and not the negroes of the South, shall prescribe the relations they are to hold to the Government. -Rich. Whig.
(Column 06)Summary: The article asserts that the present Senate of the United States is not competent to try the president, especially since the southern states are not represented.
Meeting on Monday
(Column 01)Summary: Alexander H. H. Stuart introduced Henry A. Wise who spoke at the Court House about the importance of passing the proposed subscription of $300,000 to the stock of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad. Resolutions thanking Wise were passed at the meeting.Views of the President's Counsel
(Names in announcement: Alexander H. H. Stuart, Col. Baldwin, Maj. J. Marshall McCue)
(Column 01)Summary: President Johnson's counsel express confidence that there are no grounds for conviction in his impeachment trial.[No Title]
(Column 01)Summary: Article calling attention to the Spectator's conservative credentials.
Full Text of Article:Resist Radicalism
Conservatives should remember that the Spectator never hesitated or wavered, but from the beginning opposed with might and main all the measures which have been intended to deprive the Southern people of their constitutional liberty. It opposed the call of the Convention to change the constitution from the very inception of that scheme to place Virginians under Radical and negro rule. For five months it was the only journal in the State which openly and boldly opposed the nefarious device. On the contrary, some of the papers were advocating it, and even in this place one of them did so up to the election, when all others, seeing the error into which they had fallen, had changed position and earnestly called upon the voters to vote against the Convention. But it was too late. The mischief they had done could not be remedied in so short a time. The course of the Spectator was right all the time.
(Column 01)Summary: The paper urges men to rally to defeat Radicalism, since it is the only hope for liberty.Be Ready to Vote
(Column 02)Summary: The article urges white Virginians to register and turn out to vote on the new constitution.
Origin of Article: EnquirerThe Proposed Railroad Subscription
(Column 05)Summary: Predicting that state taxes will rise this year, a citizen argues that Augusta county should not purchase stock in the railroad.
Full Text of Article:
It is not impossible that the Constitution, which the Convention at Richmond is now devising, will be imposed upon us. Believing that such a State government would prove in the highest degree injurious to the whole people, black as well as white, I earnestly hope that a majority of the voters will cast their ballots against it; but still a lawless Congress may compell us to submit to it. Better that by far than for us voluntarily to assume the yoke - better be killed than commit suicide!
One of the greatest evils we shall experience under the new order of things, will be an enormous increase of taxation. Augusta county will have to raise probably $40,000 annually for the support of free schools; for she will have not only to pay for the education of her own people, but also, to contribute to the support of schools in the poorer counties of the State. Look at West Virginia where a similar system is in operation. I am credibly informed that a gentleman there whose tax ticket, in 1860, was $30, had to pay, in 1840, the sum of $400. - Such is the grinding despotism with which we are threatened. Surely every man who owns property, or who ever hopes to own any, should arouse himself and use every legitimate means to defeat the iniquitous project.
What course, however, does common prudence dictate to use under the existing circumstances, in regard to the management of our financial affairs? Obviously, that persons in debt should strain every nerve, by the sale of property and otherwise, to get out of debt before the evil day comes; that no new debts should be contracted; that no man buy what he has not the money in hand to pay for. This is no time for us to assume unnecessary pecuniary obligations.
Yet, just at this time, it is proposed that Augusta county shall subscribe $300,000 for constructing a railroad from Covington to the Ohio River, the town of Staunton to be liable for one-sixth of the sum, or $50,000: It is alleged, to be sure, that the railroad stocks or bonds will pay eight per cent. on the investment. If so, why could not the sharp eyed capitalists of New York, London and Paris see it? The work was offered to them for months, and with millions of money seeking investment, they declined to embark in the enterprise. Thereupon our impoverished communities are called upon to take it up as an inviting speculation! It is going to enhance the value of our property. Suppose it does - the poor man who has only a house to shelter him, and which he does not wish to sell, will find little consolation in the past that the value of his property is doubled when the only effect of it is to double the amount of his annual taxes. A beautiful financial scheme, truly, to increase a man's wealth by increasing his burdens and expenditures which bring in no return -- to enlarge the value of land by charging it with a large annuity! Who will buy property subject to such burdens, except at a discount?
But Augusta county will furnish supplies to the hands constructing a railroad, and this will be a source of great wealth to our farmers, Indeed! Where then are the rich agricultural counties of Monroe, Greenbrier, &c. I believe they are somewhat nearer the line of railroad than Augusta, and it will be a marvel if they do not furnish all the flour, corn, oats, and meat that will be required.
As a property-holder to a small extent, but one whose business cannot possibly be advanced by the proposed railroad, I protest against the whole scheme as flagrantly unjust. Let gentlemen who regard the scheme as so inviting, subscribe individually for stock, and mortgage their own hands for the amount of their subscription. They will thus prove their sincerity, and put in their own pockets the rich dividends of which they speak so confidently. Especially, let them not denounce "negro suffrage" in one breath, and in the next, even before the Convention has done its work, in their hot haste to introduce the new regime, hiss on a wild horde of ignorant voters to overwhelm the property of the county with a large additional burden of debt and taxation. CITIZEN.
(Column 01)Summary: The paper reports large interest in Staunton in the cause of temperance. A temperance group meets every Monday, and is regularly inducting many people to the order.Beautiful Ladies
(Column 01)Summary: The paper celebrates the renowned beauty of the ladies of Staunton. Their "intelligence, cultivation, and refinement" make them even more attractive. The only drawback is their "disinclination to matrimony."Deposit Your Money
(Column 01)Summary: The paper urges Staunton's citizens to deposit their savings in banks. It is the only way to keep it well-protected from criminals.Staunton Lyceum
(Column 01)Summary: The Staunton Lyceum debated whether a representative should always obey the will of his constituents. The vote was 10-1 against. The group will next discuss whether Republicanism in the U.S. will survive the present revolutionary crisis.Christopher Stover Killed
(Names in announcement: Y. H. Peyton, A. M. Pierce, S. Travers Phillips, R. Mauzy, B. Christian, F. M. Young, J. Marshall Hanger, Rev. John A. English, Dr. C. R. Harris)
(Column 02)Summary: The paper reports on one of the "greatest outrages ever perpetrated in this county." Christopher Stover was killed and Robert McCreary seriously wounded when three or four armed and disguised men broke into his house near the Greenville and Waynesboro road. Stover was 68 years old and lived with his wife and two grown daughters. McCreary, Kindig and five ladies were visiting the Stovers when the killers broke in. They fled after the struggle in which Stover and McCreary were shot. It is assumed the armed men were after money.Marriages
(Names in announcement: Christopher Stover, Robert McCreary, Kindig, M. R. Coalter)
(Column 04)Summary: William Wise of Staunton and Miss Mary E. Wade of Augusta were married on March 5th near Sherando by the Rev. Jacob Killian.Marriages
(Names in announcement: Mary E. Wade, William Wise, Rev. Jacob Killian)
(Column 04)Summary: Alexander S. Coffman and Maggie W. Peters, both of Augusta, were married on March 22nd by the Rev. C. Beard.Marriages
(Names in announcement: Alexander S. Coffman, Maggie W. Peters, Rev. C. Beard)
(Column 04)Summary: George W. Gillespy and Lucy Ann Harner, both of Augusta, were married on March 5th by the Rev. C. Beard.
(Names in announcement: George W. Gillespy, Lucy Ann Harner, Rev. C. Beard)
Under Which King, Benzoni?
(Column 02)Summary: Article asserting that the political question is a simple choice between the rule of the "white man or negro." "Shall the state be ruled by the old citizens of the Anglo-Saxon race, who have proven their capacity for self-government, and have by their enterprise and energy spread republican institutions over half the continent; or shall it be given over to lazy, ignorant negroes, who have not, in the history of a thousand years, advanced one step."
Origin of Article: Char. Chronicle