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Valley of the Shadow

Valley Spirit: January 21, 1863

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-Page 01-

Description of Page: Reprint of address of New York Gov. Seymour to the New York State Assembly, plus classifieds and fiction

-Page 02-

Description of Page: Continuation of Gov. Seymour's address

A Black Secessionist
(Column 4)
Summary: The editors quote an exchange between Thaddeus Stevens and another Senator, in which Stevens admits that he does not believe the seceded states are members of the Union. This serves as an endorsement of secession, the editors write, and Stevens can be considered as bad as Jefferson Davis. The right of states to remove themselves has been denied by "true friends of the Union," and Steven's statement proves him an enemy of the Union.
Election of a U.S. Senator--Hon. C. R. Buckalew
(Column 5)
Summary: The editors note the election by the state legislature of Charles R. Buckalew, a Democrat, to the U.S. Senate, by sixty-seven to sixty-five over Cameron. Buckalew comes from Columbia County, where he was a prosecuting attorney, state senator, and chairman of the state Democratic party. Buckalew was also U.S. minister to Ecuador from 1858 to 1861. The editors praise the absence of partisan acrimony during the election, as well as Buckalew's integrity and opposition to the "fanatical, abolition party."
Correspondence from "the Army of the Potomac"
(Column 6)
Summary: A short letter from a correspondent in the 126th Reg't Penn. Reserves, reporting that all is quiet at their camp near Fredericksburg. The author expresses his hope that nobody plans to attack the city again in the near future.
Full Text of Article:

Correspondence of the Spirit and Times.

In Camp Near Fredericksburg, Va.
January 6th, 1863.

There is nothing new to write about from the army at this time. The most profound quietness prevails. As far as my observations extend, and my information has been gleaned, we are again in good fighting trim and ready to be led against the foe. Why it is that we are kept here so long, inactive, I cannot conjecture. Everything has been auspicious for active operations. Such splendid weather as we have had for this time in the season, has no parallel in the memory of the oldest inhabitant. The roads are in as good condition as they possibly can be and the organization and condition of the army can scarcely be made better. None of us are "spilling for a fight"--that exclamation in an earnest tone has had its day; but it does seem singular that there is not something done to convince the country and the world that the Grand Army of the Potomac, the most splendid military organization of modern times, is capable of doing its full share in speedily ending the Rebellion. I don't see any sign of a movement soon, and when we do move our leaders, I think, will not be so fool-hardy as to risk another attack on Fredericksburg. The question then is what route towards Richmond will we take. It has been demonstrated over and over again, that the only practicable rout, with any hope of success, is by the Peninsula. If, therefore, we are at last to move in that direction now is the propitious time to do it. We are favored by the weather, and while Jeff. Davis has considerable on his hands in the West and Southwest. To wait until the spring and summer months, would be to incur the risks of disease, high waters and another concentration of the Rebel Army at Richmond. Let us have McClellan in command again and proceed to the work at once, and while it is being done, let the Washington authorities obey the demands of the army in furnishing the necessary supplies and not in any way interfere with the military programme of its commander. We may then have some show of success and the grand Army of the Potomac will have at last accomplished the purpose of its formation.

This is all I have to say this week.


Trailer: Shenandoah
A Letter from the 107th
(Column 6)
Summary: A letter from Lieutenant Carman of the 107th Reg't Penn. Volunteers, describing the regiment's participation in the battle at Fredericksburg.
(Names in announcement: Lieut. Carman, Isaac Noel, John NoelEsq., Sgt. Thomas Myers, Dr. Reid, Capt. Brand)
Full Text of Article:

We are indebted to Dr. Reid, of this place, for the following letter from Lieut. Carman of the 107th Reg't P.V. He has kindly consented to its publication:

Headquarters 107th Reg't P.V.
In Camp Near Bell Plain Landing, Va.,
December 25th, 1862.

Dear ____: Thinking you would like to hear from the old One Hundred & Seventh, since the late battle, as there is a good number in it from Franklin county, being Christmas day and nothing doing, I have concluded to give you a history of the regiment's doings; its condition before going into battle; its conduct whilst being engaged; its appearance and condition after coming out of the slaughter, for such I call it.

On Tuesday, the 9th inst., we were ordered to break up camp at Brook's Station and take up our line of march. On the 10th we encamped in the Pines, about two miles from the Rappahannock river. At 9 o'clock at night we received orders to have three day's cooked rations in haversacks, both officers and men, and be ready to march at 3 o'clock next morning the 11th inst., to cross the river at daybreak. We arrived at the river when the bombardment of Fredericksburg commenced, which lasted until the Sun went down behind the western hills. Our Brigade laid near the river on the north side, all day on the 11th. On Friday, the 12th, the army crossed the river. After we crossed, the left grand division maneuvred [sic] on the plain, which is about five miles long and two wide. It was a magnificent sight to see that army move in column by divisions, and in line of battle by regiments, then by brigades. It was a beautiful day--the sight was an imposing one.

The troops then took supper and we all laid down on the plain to rest for the night, whilst the frost gently fell upon our unsheltered forms. Saturday morning, the 13th, came and with it as it rose a beautiful sun. We eat our breakfasts, knowing soon the great "ball," of which Burnside and Lee were the floor managers, would open. Sure enough, in about half an hour, the battle commenced. Our brigade, the first brigade in Gen. Gibbons' division, was ordered into a corn-field to support a battery, where we remained subjected to a heavy fire of shell and shot, which was aimed at the battery for three hours.

About half-past one o'clock, p.m., the infantry was engaged, and finally one brigade of our division was ordered forward, then another and so on, until at last our brigade was ordered by Gen. Gibbons to charge on and through a belt of wood that was in the rear of the railroad. The knapsacks were unslung and at it we went. We relieved the brigade that was engaging the enemy holding the railroad. We then gave them a volley and on a charge went "double quick." The One Hundred and Seventh was the first that entered the wood and charged half through it when it was ordered back on to the railroad to hold it, until we could be supported; but not withstanding the order, the boys would cheer and rush boldly on. The enemy advanced with fresh reinforcements, and we were not supported. We were ordered to fall back out of range and re-form, which we did in good order, but as our regiment was the farthest in advance, we were the last in falling back, consequently we received a heavy fire whilst we were doing so; it was then that the whole brigade suffered most.

After we had re-formed we were ordered still farther back over a small hill, where the Colonel commanding the brigade, (Colonel Root,) highly complimented our Colonel (McCoy) upon the conduct of his regiment. Here we laid down for the night.

The regiment went into the engagement with 171 men and 16 officers--53 killed and wounded and one missing--and came out of the battle with 117 men and 16 officers. A remarkable incident here, is, that not an officer was killed and only one, a Lieutenant, wounded. Since our loss in action the paroled prisoners have returned, swelling the regiment to 175 effective men. You can see from this statement that the 107th is nearly extinguished. It will soon be numbered with other gallant regiments from Pennsylvania, which have ceased to exist, "but only in men," their name, number and gallant deeds will ever exist and will appear brighter on the pages of history as time increases, and stimulate many a brave heart as they read over the noble conduct of such men.

On Sunday morning, the 14th, at 2 o'clock, we were ordered up to march immediately; we then changed our position about one and a half miles farther on the left, fronting the enemy's right flank. Our brigade then took up their line of battle in a new direction from what it was on the previous day. After our line was formed we laid down on the frosty plain to rest until daybreak--after daylight we all looked very venerable, as our locks were "whitened," not with the frosts of many winters, but with the frost of one night. Well, we laid, the 3d brigade, in the line of battle until about 10 o'clock on Sabbath, where we were annoyed by a rebel battery throwing round shot on the plain and alighting close to us, one striking in the ranks of the brigade on the right, hitting a knapsack of a man cutting it from his back, and by the way the letter paper and envelopes flew in the air. I judge his correspondence was damaged for a while. Our brigade then was ordered out of range of the gun, which was soon afterwards silenced by two of our batterys--here ended the particulars of that day (Sabbath). Where we were ordered to on Sunday, we laid all day on Monday, the 15th, and had inspection of arms in sight of the rebs, who were keeping up a smart fire on our pickets, occasionally a minute ball flying over our heads. Thus ended Monday. We laid down to sleep where we slept on Sunday night, but instead of waking up in the same place, we woke up on this side of the river, somewhat relieved, both in body and mind. As Gen. Burnside did not succeed in storming the rebs' earth works, he played them a "Yankee Trick," at which they were very much chagrined. On the next day we left the river and encamped about two miles north of it. In the evening our regiment had dress parade, at which time the Colonel commanding the brigade sent in his compliments to the regiment which was read, saying in these words: "that he, the commander of the 1st brigade in this division, had reason of being proud of such a body of troops on account of their conduct in the late action, and especially the 107th Pennsylvania regiment in which the officers and men acted gallantly." Isaac Noel, son of John Noel, Esq., of Chambersburg, was killed and Serg't Thomas Myers was wounded, both of company K, formerly Capt. Brand's. They were both stricken down whilst gallantly charging on the enemy. They were good and faithful soldiers such as your community have reason to be proud of. My company (E) came out very safe; we had one sergeant and one private wounded, both slightly. But while our company was spared hundreds of the brave were made to bite the dust; but while I speak of gallant men falling, at the same time the ground was strewn with dead and wounded rebels. I have given you all the particulars of the action on the left wing as they came under my observation when we crossed the river, until we arrived again on the north side.

A Soldier's Letter
(Column 7)
Summary: The Spirit reprints a letter from an unnamed soldier in the Army of the Potomac who writes to express his displeasure with an editorial in the Repository and Transcript that criticized General McClellan. That editor, says the soldier, had better not come near the Army of the Potomac, lest his "length and breadth would be found upon the ground."
Editorial Comment: "We publish it as another evidence of that intense love and admiration for General McClellan that still exists among the Army of the Potomac."
Trailer: A Soldier
Letter from Harrisburg
(Column 7)
Summary: Reports the election of Charles R. Buckalew over Simon Cameron to the U.S. Senate. The Democrats in the state legislature voted as a party, and no Democrat was bribed to vote for the other side as many had feared.
Trailer: Eye Witness

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Description of Page: Market information and classified advertising fill out the page. Marriages and Deaths, usually printed on this page, do not appear in this issue.

The Weather
(Column 1)
Summary: The editors note that the past several days have been the coldest of the season, though they point out that cold weather allows "the ice dealer to lay up a quantity of ice for the summer" and presents an opportunity for skating.
Small Pox
(Column 1)
Summary: The editors note that small pox has been appeared in both Hagerstown and Harrisburg, though the number of cases (800 to 1,000) they believe to be greatly exaggerated. They remind the readers that the vaccination is "an almost perfect preventative of small pox."
Cheer the Soldier
(Column 1)
Summary: The editors encourage people to write to the soldiers to help keep their spirits up.
Black and White
(Column 1)
Summary: The editors attempt to list the differences, both physiological and psychological, between blacks and whites.
Full Text of Article:

There is a marked difference between the black and white man. The immortal Thomas Jefferson made seventeen points of difference. "They differ in color, in their hair, and in the shape of their bodies. The black man has more beard than the white man. He prespires [sic] more profusely--a striking proof that his condition is best adapted to a warm climate. There is a sight difference in the arrangement of the lungs, by which the black has more exhaling than the white. The black requires less sleep--this will account for their midnight revels to the music of the banjoe [sic], fiddle, bones, triangle, &c. His love is more ardent, but less imaginative than that of the white man. His grief is more transient. He reflects less--hence their constant whistling, humming and singing negro melodies. His reasoning powers are decidedly inferior--which experience has demonstrated in numberless instances. The black has less originality--a truth doubted by none. He has no turn for the arts of painting and sculpture. He has as good an ear for music as the white man, but no skill in composing. And lastly, the black has no poetical tendencies.

Panorama of Palestine
(Column 1)
Summary: The editors relay the announcement of the impending arrival of a panorama of Palestine and the Holy Land, painted from photographs of a five-year resident of that place. The exhibition will be worth the "patronage of an intelligent and appreciating community."
(Names in announcement: Thomas A. McDonnell)
A Dangerous Counterfeit
(Column 1)
Summary: The editors alert their readers to counterfeit five dollar notes on the Bank of America in New York City. They "much resemble" the genuine bills, but can be detected by the fact that the signatures and date of issuance on the counterfeit notes are engraved, while on the originals they are handwritten.
Letter from a Judge on the Supreme Court
(Column 2)
Summary: The editors reprint a letter from Daniel Miller, a Lincoln appointee to the Supreme Court. In it, Miller, a "Clay Whig" who had joined the Republican Party, decries the abolitionist members of that party and declares his sympathies for the Democratic Party's "mission" to save the Union.
Editorial Comment: "If Judge Miller is as sound a lawyer as he is a politician, we must give the President credit for having made one good appointment."
Carlisle Democrat
(Column 3)
Summary: Discusses a case in which the U.S. Attorney General argued that a free black man was a citizen and thus allowed to commanded a ship registered in the U.S. Such an opinion, writes the editor, only weakens the doctrine set forth in Dred Scott, which declared that blacks were not citizens.
Chambersburg Female Seminary
(Column 4)
Summary: The Chambersburg Female Seminary will begin its Spring Session on February 9. The teachers are: Rev. Henry Reeves, A.M, Principal; Dr. George Seibert, French and German; Miss Jane Gilullan, English branches and drawing; Miss Z. C. DeForest, instrumental and vocal music; Miss S. H. Curtis, preparatory department.
(Names in announcement: Rev. Henry ReevesA.M., Dr. George Seibert, Miss Jane Gilullan, Miss Z. C. DeForest, Miss S. H. Curtis)

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Description of Page: Classified advertisements

The Chambersburg Academy
(Column 1)
Summary: The trustees of the Chambersburg Academy, in a long-running advertisement, announce recent physical improvements and the supervision of the academy by J. K. Shryock, Principal, teacher of classics, and J. R. Kinney, instructor in natural sciences and higher mathematics.
(Names in announcement: J. K. Shryock, J. R. Kinney, Hon. George Chambers, D. K. Wunderlich, G. R. Messersmith, William HeyserSr., W. H. McDowell, T. B. KennedyEsq., Joseph Clark, Bernard Wolff, William McClellanEsq., William G. Reed)