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Valley of the Shadow

Staunton Spectator: June 2, 1868

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-Page 01-

Virginia and the Northwest. The Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad and its Incomparable Advantages
(Column 03)
Summary: Article stressing the importance of the proposed Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad in linking Virginia with the West.
Letter from Hon. A. H. H. Stuart
(Column 05)
Summary: A. H. H. Stuart responds to a letter requesting information on the Conservative's strategy in the upcoming Presidential election. Stuart claims that the wise strategy is to select a reasonable man capable of winning the popular vote, and recommends that personal preferences be subsumed to the larger issue of defeating the Radicals.
Full Text of Article:

In reply to a letter written him by Mr. John T. Stuart, of Springfield, Illinois, asking information as to the part in the National Democratic Convention the opponents in the South to the Republicans will pursue, Mr. Stuart writes the following letter:

STAUNTON, Va., May 14, 1868.

Hon. John T. Stuart--Dear Sir--your favor of the 8th instant has been received, and I hasten to reply to it.

As far as I have been able to gather the sentiment of the Whigs and Democrats of Virginia, in regard to the selection of a candidate for the President, it is this: They have no particular partiality or prejudice for or against any individual. They go for success. They will cordially support any respectable Conservative who may have the strength to beat the Radicals. They know that the great battle for the Constitution and the Government is to be fought in the North, and they are, therefore, disposed to concede to the Northern States the right of selecting the standard bearer. I think when the Convention meets, the Southern delegates will say to their Northern associates, "You are the best judges as to which of the candidates is strongest in your section; deliberate carefully and dispassionately, make your choice, and we will stand by your judgment." Mr. Pendleton is not very extensively known to the people of the South but all that we do know of him is favorable, and the fact that he commands so large a share of the confidence of the people of his own and other Western States, who know him best, speaks volumes in his favor. I may add, that, as far as I am individually concerned, your indorsement of him carries great weight.

I have no personal acquaintance with him, but I understand he is a son of my old friend, Nathaniel Green Pendleton, with whom we served in the Twenty-seventh Congress, and that fact predisposes me strongly in his favor.

What the South desires, above all things, is a release from Radical bondage, and we care little under whose lead that result is accomplished. We look to the end, not to the means.

Mr. Pendleton would be entirely acceptable to the people of Virginia. If, on a comparison of opinions in the Convention, it should be decided that this is the strongest man, we will rally to his support with enthusiasm.

I have seen it suggested in some papers that while Mr. Pendleton is strong in the West and Northwest, he would be obnoxious to the Middle States, Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey for example. I do not know how this is, but I think the matter should be carefully weighed, so that the choice should fall on the man who combines the largest and most diffused elements of popularity. Mr. Pendleton's views on currency and finance will be acceptable to the South.

In my judgment the most enlarged and catholic spirit ought to prevail in the Convention. It is no time to stand on personal preferences. The issues are too important for anything of that kind to have weight.

The Southern people will support cheerfully Pendleton, Hancock, Doolittle, Hendricks, Seymour, or any other sound Conservative man, provided he has what John Randolph called the "turning out faculty." I think the signs of the times are all auspicious, and it would be a shame if we should lose a glorious victory by miserable bickerings and squabbles in regard to men. Very truly yours,


[No Title]
(Column 05)
Summary: A letter from a citizen asking whether Mr. Jordan, a representative of the Freedmen's Bureau, has the authority to force the Methodist Church to allow a minister of the Northern Methodist Church to preach there.
Full Text of Article:

For the Spectator.


May 20th, 1868.

MR. EDITOR:-- The usual quiet of our village was somewhat disturbed on Sunday morning the 17th inst., by the reception of an order issued by Mr. Jordan, the agent of the Freedmen's Bureau, and directed to the Rev. Mr. Engle, the preacher in charge here, Mr. Batis and Mr. Fisher; requesting those gentlemen to have the doors of the Methodist Church opened on Sunday morning, at 10 o'clock, for preaching, by the Rev. Mr. King, and threatening in case of any disturbance, the arrest and trial of the parties engaged, by military authority. -- Not having the order, I am unable to give the exact words, but the above is the sum and substance.

In compliance with this order, Mr. Batis early on Sunday morning, endeavored to carry out its requisition; but failing to obtain the keys, the matter ended, with the exception of some angry and excited remarks being indulged in by the parties concerned, and here, permit me to say, that the individual in whose behalf, and I presume upon whose application this order was obtained, certainly did not make a very favorable impression upon the minds of the community, in this his first advent into our midst. Instead of hearing, that he seemed to be a meek and humble disciple of his Master, whose whole soul, thoughts, and feelings were enlisted in the great and glorious work in which he professes to be engaged; nearly the first thing which saluted our cars was, that the Rev'd gentlemen travels his circuit with a revolver in his pocket, thus exciting, at least, the suspicion that he is a fighting man -- a man of blood and carnage, and the reason assigned for this unusual accompaniment of a Minister of the Gospel, whose weapons were supposed to be spiritual, was to protect himself in any emergency; and fearing, perhaps, that a similar oral indignity might be attempted in Augusta, which was, as I understand, perpetuated upon him during his itinerary last year, in the county of Rockbridge. The ball, which he fired at his assailants, on that occasion, while engaged in the discharge of his ministerial duties, fortunately "missed its aim," and I am informed, Mr. King carries it with him, and exhibits it, as I am told he did, in families in this community, not so much perhaps as evidence of his skill as a marksman, while indulging in carnal weapons, as a trophy of his chivalry.

My object in this communication is not to gratify any idle curiosity, but simply to ascertain the fact, "whether or not the agent of the Bureau, at Staunton, is clothed with the power claimed in this order. The people of Augusta have always been distinguished as law-loving and a law abiding people; and the citizens of this section of the county can claim supremacy in this respect, over those of New Hope and its vicinity, but believing as they did, that Mr. Jordan has transcended his authority by interfering with matters, not pertaining to his office, they refused compliance with his orders. What redress the issuing of this order on behalf of Mr. King rather singular, arises from the fact that the Rev. Mr. Phelps, the Presiding Elder of the Northern Methodist Church, who had an appointment to preach here some time during the past year, hearing, upon his arrival, that objection was made to his occupying the Church, where the rightful owners thereof, were opposed to his occupying it. Mr. Phelps, I believe, is still the Presiding Elder, living in Staunton; and I have never yet heard of any attempt being made by him, to call upon the strong arm of the agent of the Freedmen's Bureau, to introduce him into the pulpit of the Methodist Church in that place. If the agent of the Bureau by a flourish of his can open the doors of the Church, at New Hope, for the admittance of Mr. King, by the same process he can open the Church in Staunton; and so, of every Church in the county of whatever name or denomination. All that is necessary, is for Mr. King to make an appointment to preach, and objection being made, he has only to call upon Mr. Jordan to aid him in the accomplishment of his designs. Can this be so? Has Gen. Schofield entrusted in the hands of the agent at Staunton the exercise of any such power?

I ask, and as I am seeking for information, I am in hopes the questions will be answered -- Is there any law, civil or military, in the State conferring upon Mr. Jordan, the power claimed in this order? If there be, let him publish it; and the people of this county will yield ready obedience, however repugnant such law may be their feelings. If there be, let him publish it; and the people of this county will yield ready obedience, however repugnant such law may be to their feelings. If, however, as I believe, the Post he occupies clothes him with no such authority, then the people ought to know it, and Mr. Jordan be reported to his superiors, for a gross violation of the duties of his office.

I had supposed from the name of the office, "Freedmen's Bureau,", that the duties appertaining to this department were more exclusively confined to the interests of the negroes; and the people will surely be surprised, if, in addition, they find that the rights and priveleges of the different religious denominations in our county are committed into the hands of Mr. Jordan, to mould them at his will.


-Page 02-

Acquittal of the President
(Column 01)
Summary: Report on Andrew Johnson's acquittal by the Senate.
Can Deputy Postmasters Register?
(Column 01)
Summary: Article asserting that Deputy Postmasters who joined the Confederacy are still entitled to register to vote, because they were not "officers" and did not have to take an oath to protect the constitution of the U.S.
White Sulphur Springs
(Column 01)
Summary: The paper reports on preparations at White Sulphur Springs to receive summer visitors. The hotel has been renovated, railroads are offering discounts, and a telegraph line has been installed at the hotel.

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[No Title]
(Column 01)
Summary: Reminder about the performance of "Esther" and "Belshazzar" at the Deaf, Dumb, and Blind Institute.
[No Title]
(Column 01)
Summary: Col. Bolivar Christian and S. Travers Phillips spoke against the constitution at Hall's School-house. "All classes of whites and some colored are being awakened to the absolute necessity of voting down the Constitution."
(Names in announcement: Col. Bolivar Christian, S. Travers Phillips)
Religious Notice
(Column 01)
Summary: The first quarterly meeting of the M. E. Church South will be held in Staunton. The Rev. E. F. Busey will preach.
(Names in announcement: Rev. E. F. Busey)
[No Title]
(Column 01)
Summary: The collector of the U. S. Revenue will be collecting federal tax in Augusta on June 15th, 16th and 17th. "As taxes must be paid, it is as well to pay them willingly as reluctantly. Pay them and be done with it."
(Column 01)
Summary: The Deaf, Dumb, and Blind Institute will give a vocal and instrumental concert for the benefit of Miss Sue Ritenhour, a blind pupil who is graduating this session. Ritenhour "has one of the sweetest voices we have ever heard."
(Names in announcement: Sue Ritenhour)
[No Title]
(Column 01)
Summary: The paper urges people to attend the ongoing fair at the Town Hall and partake of the nightly feast.
Floral Celebrations
(Column 01)
Summary: The paper reports on May crowning celebrations in Staunton. The students of the Deaf, Dumb, and Blind Institute selected a queen and celebrated a floral crowning, with Miss Lizzie Catlett receiving the honor. It was accompanied by student musical performances. The students of St. Francis Female School also selected and crowned a May Queen. Both Protestants and Catholics crowded the church grounds for the ceremony. Prof. A. J. Turner composed the music. Miss Mary Nelligan was selected queen, and surrounded by a court. She led the procession into church, where she crowned a statue of the Virgin Mary. The pastor explained to the congregation that "the ceremony of crowning the statue was not, as some suppose, a superstitious act, but only the carrying out of a simple instinct of the heart, in thus paying a tribute of respect and affection for one who occupied so intimate a relation to the God-Man." Religious services followed.
(Names in announcement: Lizzie Catlett, Prof. A. J. Turner, Mary Nelligan, Bridget Kennedy, Kate Moran, Fannie McLaughlin, Regina Kelley, Magdalen Scherer, Mary Crimmens, Ella McCarthy, Nannie Dineen, Mollie Dineen, Sarah Crickard, Norah Hurley, Hannah Hounihan, Kate Callahan, Ella Catharill, Mary Quinlan, Bettie Crowe, Julia Murphy, Jennie O'Brien, Maggie O'Donnell, Maggie O'Conners, Irene Kelley, Annie Fallon, Katie Beck, Annie Howe)
Sunday School Agency of the Baltimore Conference of the M. E. Church, South
(Column 02)
Summary: The Rev. G. G. Brooke, General Agent, addressed the Sabbath School of the M. E. Church South and received subscriptions for 80-100 numbers of the Sunday "School Visitor." He also preached in Staunton and Churchville and plans to visit most of the towns in the area.
(Names in announcement: Rev. G. G. Brooke)
New School
(Column 02)
Summary: William H. Kable and S. J. Coffman will open a classical and mathematical school in West View, Augusta County. They will teach ancient and modern languages, mathematics, and English. The paper endorses Coffman as an excellent teacher.
(Names in announcement: William H. Kable, S. J. Coffman)
Analysis of Sibert's Steel
(Column 02)
Summary: Lorenzo Sibert's steel has been pronounced "true steel" with only one-fifth of one percent of manganese by Col. Gilham of Richmond. The sample was taken from the railroad ties cast at the foundry of Parkins and Nelson that have been pronounced as good as any made in the US or Europe.
(Names in announcement: Lorenzo Sibert, Col. Gilham, Parkins, Nelson)
White Scallawags vs Negroes
(Column 02)
Summary: Claims that "the white advocates of negro suffrage are dreadfully afraid that negroes will want to hold office," for this will prevent the advocates from taking these same offices.
Origin of Article: Dispatch
Full Text of Article:

The white advocates of negro suffrage are dreadfully afraid that negroes will want to hold office. That is exactly what was not intended. The negro, under the scallawag program, was only to vote; and to vote for the white scallawag. So when any colored voter desires to go to Congress he is most earnestly implored not to press his claim -- he will divide the party -- he will injure the negro cause! Why will he injure the negro cause? Will Radicals dare to object to his holding office?--to his admission into Congress?

When a man advocates the conferring of the right of voting upon negroes, and denies their capability to hold office, he stultifies himself, and shows that he is a man without principle. According to our republican government, the two qualifications go together. The body of men capable of voting are capable, through representatives elected out of their body, of governing. If they are not fit for the one, they are not fit for the other function. The white men who defend the negro's right to vote assert his capacity to govern; and when they try to exclude him from office they show their own selfishness and greed -- that they have pretended to be friends of the negro merely to get his vote for themselves -- that they have, by false pretenses to him, sought to get offices and honors they could not obtain by white votes -- and that they are, in short, traitors to both white and black. The negroes will best show their sagacity and honesty by probing these corrupt white allies of their's, finding out their rottenness, and repudiating them as soon as possible. -- Dispatch.

(Column 03)
Summary: David G. Harry died in Staunton of paralysis at age 61.
(Names in announcement: David G. Harry)

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