Valley Spirit: September 27, 1865Go To Page : 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |
Opposition to President Johnson
(Column 1)Summary: At recently held Republican State Conventions around the country, the article reports, leading members of the party publicly criticized President Johnson and his Reconstruction policies. The cause of the latest flurry of protests is Johnson's endorsement of the Mississippi convention, where many antebellum leaders re-emerged as prominent political players.
Full Text of Article:[No Title]
The Republican party is rapidly arraying itself in open hostility to the administration of President Johnson. His wise and conciliatory measures for the pacification of the country, and the speedy restoration of the Southern States to their proper positions within the Union does not suit its purposes. The grand scheme of plunder, corruption and negro equality stands in imminent danger of being suddenly brought to an end by the operation of the policy of the President. The President has takent he Constitution for his guide andadopted a policy in accordance with the spirit and meaning of that instrument, at once wise, magnanimous and just, for doing which he has incurred the everlasting enmity of the radicals. The leading representative men of the party have already openly declared war against him, and announced their intention to fight him at every step, and, if possible, to make his policy a failure, as they have already declared it to be.
It will be remembered that a convention was recently held in the State of Mississippi, under the auspices of Provisional Governor Sharkey, who was appointed by President Johnson to carry out his policy or restoration in that State. The Convention performed its duties to the entire satisfaction of the President, who congratulated the Governor, in a letter, upon the happy and satisfactory results of the labors of the Convention. But not so with the leaders of the Abolition party. Not a single word of commendation has yet been heard from one of them. But, on the contrary, the more bold among them have openly expressed their diisapporbation of the course of the Convention, and consequently of the President, whilst the timid and weaker brethren--such as our neighbor of the Repository--have smothered their wrath and kept ominously silent. Mr. Charles Sumner, probably the leading representative man in the party, boldly denounced the whole convention in his recent speech before the Republican State Convention of Massachusetts, denouncing it as "little better than a rebel conspiracy to obtain political power." Remember tha what Mr. Sumner calls a "rebel conspiracy" was instigated, promoted and endorsed by President Johnson. Is not this opposing the Government?" What has become of all that intense "loyalty" of Mr. Sumner and his fellow partisans during Mr. Lincoln's administration, when they denounced all who said a word against the President or his policy as traitors to the "government?"
But this is not at all. The Chicago Tribune, the leading Republican journal of the Northwest, and which seems to have a little more straight-forwardness and common honesty than its Eastern contemporaries of the same political persuasion, speaks thus of the President's Mississippi policy:
We will not inquire into the motives which prompted President Johnson to issue his extraordinary order to General Slocum. It is sufficient for us to know that it virtually proposes to recognize the rebel army in Mississippi after the loyal army has been mainly disarmed and disbanded. It is sufficient for us to know that such a policy gives power for mischief to those who will be only too glad to use it, power to make the condition of the freedmen less tolerable than the condition of slavery from which they emerged, power to drive every Northern man out of the State, and to revive the reign of terror which has been the normal condition of the South for twenty years--in short, all the power which bayonets and bullets can give to unrepentent slave drivers and rebels. It looks very much as though the great battle had to be fought over again before the victory would be secure.
So chagrined does the Tribune seem because the President is permitting the people of the South to resume their constitutional rights, that it threatesn us with another war. What the war is to be for, it does not cleraly state. It cannot be for the purpose of restoring the Union, for a speedy restoration of the Union is what it objects to.--It must, therefore, be to prevent a restoration--to keep the Southern States out of the Union until such time as their people may be willing to adopt all the wild theories and fancies of fanatical Abolitionism. We opine it will be a long time before the people of the North will agree to enlist in such a war.
All the Republican State Conventions recently held have either directly or indirectly assailed the policy of the President. In Minnesota they went so far as to vote down a resolution endorsing the "civil and military policy of President Johnson." In Pennsylvania the Convention was controlled by Thaddeus Stevens the most bitter and uncompromising opponent of the President's policy in the whole land. The resolutions were sugar-coated with one of a milk and water character in favor of the President, simply because it would have been im ipolitic to have done otherwise; but no one will be deceived by so flimsy a subterfuge, as the spirit of determined hostility to the President is breathed through every line and syllable of the remainder. Contrary to the facts in the case, they declare the President's policy a failure," doubtless because the "wish was father to the thought," and announce the antagonistic doctrine that the States must be held as conquered provinces and their people as subjugated aliens, "subject to such rules and regulations as the supreme law-making power of the nation" may prescribe; and the late speech of Thaddeus Stevens must be construed as the only true interpretation of the platform of the party in this State, he being the leading spirit of the Convention that framed it, and its admitted author. In this speech, which was made by authority, after consultation with the leading politicians of his party in the State, Mr. Stevens declares open war upon the President and denounces his policy of "restoration" as a most "flagrant usurpation."
Such is the position of the leaders of the Republican party in this and other States. They have determined to thwart the President at every step, and rather than see his plan succeed they will prevent any restoration of the Union whatever, if it be in their power to prevent it. Indeed, Mr. Stevens admits this in so many words when he says that "Restoration will leave the 'Union as it was'--a hideous idea." The Democratic party, on the contrary, is a unit in favor of the President's policy of restoration. No Democrat in this broad land can be pointed out who has yet uttered a word of dissent, but all with one voice, endorse it heartily, cordially, and even enthusiastically. They do this not vfrom any sinister motives, but because they believe it to be constitutional and just, and calculated to result speedily in a restored Union.
Citizens of Franklin county, the issue is before you, if you are opposed to the Union and Constitution of our fathers--if you are in favor of keeping up a large standing army to hold the Southern States in subjection as conquered provinces--if you are in favor of increased taxastion to enrich the public plunderers, who for four years have fattened on the public treasury--if you are in favor of increasing our already enormous national debt until the country sinks beneath the burden--if you are in favor of converting our constitutional form of government into a centralized military despotism to gratify the ambition and malignant hate of such men as Chase, Sumner and Stevens, then vote the Abolition ticket. If, on the other hand, you are in favor of President Johnson's plan for the speedy restoration of the Southern States to the Union, for the restoration of the civil authority in those States, the withdrawal of the military and the conswequent reduction of our national expenses--if you wish to see the Constitution restored to its supremacy in all the land, and the rights of States and citizens secured on a solid foundation--if you desire peace, plenty and prosperity again to smile upon the whole country as in former times under the benign influences of Democratic rule, then vote the Democratic ticket. Such are the positions of the two partiesin the pending political contest. Choose ye between them.
(Column 2)Summary: Mocks the Repository editor for his optimism on the eve of the elections. The Spirit asserts that he must surely know that the Republicans' chances of winning have dimmed considerably since party leaders endorsed black suffrage and ignored the repeated requests to indemnify farmers in the southern section of the state for damages they suffered during the war.
Full Text of Article:The Disunionists
OUR entire ticket can succeed if we do our whole duty.--Repository
It is almost past belief, but nevertheless true that the great shoddy party of Franklin county, which once boasted its thousand majority, has come down to this. "Our entire ticket can succeed if we do our whole duty." The Repository does not, as in years gone by, boast of assured success, and the immense majority which its ticket will receive at the ballot box, but despondingly admits that there is a bare possibility of success "if we do our whole duty." The fact is the editor of that paper is a shrewd politician. He long since saw the handwriting on the wall, and prudently declined a position on the ticket with the naive remark that this was a good year for some one else to run. He knows very well that negro suffrage, and the refused on the part of his party friends in the Legislature, to indemnify the border people for losses sustained during the war are the last straws which are breaking the back of his party in the southern section of the State; he has therefore, passed from the front ot the rear, and is cheering his fellow partisans with the very cold encouragement that they may, possibly succeed if they do their "whole duty." No sir! You cannot succeed in electing a man on the ticket, and well you know it! Do not, therefore, hold out delusive hopes to the poor victims who are doomed to slaughter. Do not make their defeat, to them, more unbearable by encouraging expectations which you know will fail to be realized.
The Colonel is as desponding in regard to the result in the State, as he is in relation to the county. He is an adept in discovering the signs in the political horizon, and can see a storm coming before such fellows as Stumbaugh get an eye open. He plainly descerns the approaching avalanche and sounds the note of alarm in the camp of the "loyal." He thus gloomily sums up the chances of endorsing negro suffrage in the State this fall.
"Immediate and thorough organization only will save Pennsylvania this fall. Our opponents are well prepared for the conflict. They will poll their full vote. In the Northeast they will do quite as well as last year.
In the Southern counties--those South of the Juniata and Susquehanna and East of the Alleghenies, we cannot materially improve the October vote of last year. It is possible to reduce the crushing majorities of York, Cumberland, Adams, Fulton and Bedford a thousand; but more is not to be expected; less may be the result.
Philadelphia must fall off essentially in her vote, because the vast manufacturing for the army has been almost wholly arrested, and thousands of government employees and operatives on government work of various kinds, have been scattered in other channels of industry over the country. Their reduction must diminish the large Union majority of last year from 2,500 to 3,000, and the adjoining county of Delaware can scarcely fail to be similarly elected by the same causes.
The success of the Union ticket depends wholly on the organization and full vote of Lancaster, Dauphin, Somerset, Bradford, Susquehanna, Tiogo, Erie, Crawford, Indiana, Lawrence, Allegheny, &c. If these Union strong-holds shall be systematically and thoroughly organized and polled, we shall carry the State by a decisive majority. If they fail, as they did last year in October, the State will inevitably be lost.
(Column 2)Summary: Individuals "who oppose the policy of President Johnson and a speedy restoration of the revolted States" met at Brown's hotel on Sept. 9th, relates the article. Col. McClure and David McConaughy delivered speeches at the meeting while the Chambersburg Concert Band provided music and ex-Sheriff Brown's whiskey supplied the "enthusiasm."The Indemnity (?) Who Were Responsible for Its Defeat
(Names in announcement: Col. McClure, David McConaughyEsq.)
(Column 3)Summary: Chastises Republican legislators for failing to compensate Chambersburg residents for the losses they sustained when their town was invaded on July 30, 1864. The article alleges the Republicans vehemently opposed a bill on the grounds that Chambersburgers acted "cowardly" during the invasion."
Full Text of Article:Disunionism
We believe it to be an [unclear] truth that protection of the citizens against all wrong is the true design of human government. This is evident from the acknowledged fact that government was established solely on account of the[unclear] danger and insecurity which universally prevailed in a state of nature. It cannot, therefore be improper to say that no government deserves the allegiance of the people, that is too weak or too indifferent to their welfare, to strive to protect them, so deeply were the fathers of the Republic impressed with this truth, that they imposed upon the United States, the constitutional duty of guaranteeing to every State in the Union, a republican form of government and to the citizens protection from invasion and domestic violence. This language was the utterance of men, who had just emerged from the smoke and blood of an eight years war, with kingcraft and oppression. Alongside of the guarantee of a republican form of government to the States, was placed the solemn pledge of the people against invasion and domestic violence. The one right was regarded as sacred as the other. These obligations were not incorporated into the constitution, as glittering generalities, but were meant to convey an assurance, that in all time, the government of the Union would be in truth as well as in name the protector of the citizens. So implicitly have we been accustomed to rely upon the fulfillment of all the pledges of the constitution, that until within the last four years no one has ever been found bold enough to doubt the beneficence of the government or, to deny its obligation to protect the people.
But with our melancholy experience of the last four years, we may well be pardoned for questioning the fidelity of those who now administer the government, to the interests of the people. To rehearse again the trials and sufferings of the border is a painful retrospect. But if it shall avail to make one single voter pause and reflect upon what we say, our pain will be changed to pleasure.
The border counties have never complained of the ordinary burdens of the war.--They have sent their young men into the army, and cast their money into the public treasury without a murmer. They felt that this was a debt, which loyalty was bound to discharge, but they feel that they have good ground to consider themselves grievously wronged when, in addition to those common calamities they have been required to suffer, wrongs not commmon to any other part of the country. Having sent the flower of their youth to die upon the battlefield and having discharged cheerfully all their obligations to the government, they had a right to expect that they would be protected against invasion, or if that were not possible, they believed they had a right to demand indemnity for losses sustained at the hands of the public enemy. Our readers need not be told that no adequate means were adopted by the government to protect the border from invasion. With the ruins of this once beautiful town around them, they scarcely need to be reminded of the horrors of the 30th of July. Crushed beneath a calamity unparallelled in the war, our despoiled and beggared citizens went up to the Legislature at its extraordinary session in 1864, with a prayer for relief. We felt the misfortune so keenly ourselves that we could not think it possible that others would be less sensitive than we. Argument was used and entreaty employed in our behalf. The Constitution was appealed to, and the duty of the government to indemnify us from losses, was stoutly urged, but neither logic nor sentiment could move those who held control of the public purse. A proposition to pay the sufferers in Chambersburg one million of dollars did not receive a single Republican vote, and a bill to pay them two hundred thousand dollars which had passed the House was curtailed to one hundred thousand dollars by the hostile majority in the Senate.
During the last session of the Legislature so embittered were the republicans against the indemnity bill that they would not allow even a bill to ascertain the amount of the losses, and which did not provide for their payment to become a law. Although Col. McClure received the suffrages of many democrats under the hope that his influence with his party would be strong enough to overcome their opposition to the measure yet of so little avail were his most strenuous exertions against their insane and unreasoning hostility that they were only effectual to command half a score of votes from his own party. The Legislative Record will show, that during all these struggles for the success of the measure, the Democrats were true to their constitutional obligations and universally voted in favor of payment of our losses.
The arguments of the Republicans against the bill were grossly insolent in tone and puerile in logic. They charged that the people of the border were cowardly and disloyal. That they were direlict in duty in not driving the invaders from the State, a feat which required three days of hard fighting at Gettysburg, to accomplish. It was even denied that the State was bound to reimburse her citizens for their losses, and lastly it was argued that it was too soon to commence the payment of those claims, as the war was not over. The last of these objections was the only one that was ever regarded as having any reason or plausibility. But happily the close of the war has removed this objection. It can now be readily ascertained what the losses have been, and how much money will be required to pay them. There is no danger now in establishing such a precedent. No one can, at this time have any just or reasonable excuse for refusing our people relief. No one who respects his constitutional obligations, will attempt to do so.--But to whom shall we entrust our great cause? In whom shall we confide, now that the hour has come when we have a right to demand redress? There is an old proverb, "if a man cheats me once it is his fault, if he cheats me twice it is my fault." Let us improve the lesson of this proverb, we have been once cajoled into believing that the election of a Republican to the Legislature would lead to the success of of our measure. Let us not again be seduced into the grave error. "Though one rose from the dead," he could not convert the Republican party to the support of this bill. The party has boldly and defiantly taken a position of antagonism to this bill. They have committed themselves beyond recall against the measure. The experience of two winters ought to be enough to convince every voter that nothing short of an entire change in the administration of the State government, will suffice to make the scheme of the border successful. We are amazed at the effrontery of the Republican Legislative candidates, claiming the suffrage [unclear] the voters of this district, upon a promise that they will be able to do what strong men in their own party were utterly incapable of accomplishing.
Voters of Franklin county and sufferers of the 30th of July, be not deluded by such specious pretexts. We have an abiding faith that sooner or later the great commonwealth of Pennsylvania will be just to all her citizens and true to the creed of its philanthropic founder. But this tardy justice will never come to you until the angean stables of abolitionism shall be cleansed by the Hercules of Democracy. The party that has betrayed the Constitution whilst professing to do it homage can never safely be entrusted with the restoration of your rights. The election of republicans will but postpone the hour of your deliverance. It will bring you no hope nor accomplish relief. When we in our daily walks through the streets of this town, pass the paths of once happy homes and behold their former owners striving with their little means to rebuild the crumbled walls and to rekindle the fire upon the old hearthstone our bosoms heave with indignation at the fanaticism which has wrought such ruin and our hearts long with an irrepresible longing for the advent of that blesses day which shall witness the restoration to power of the only party in the country that has its whole political creed embodied in the noble declaration of "equality among all the States of the Union, and protection to all the citizens of all the States in the full enjoyment of all their rights."
(Column 4)Summary: Although Republicans endeavored for years prior to the war to break-up the Union, they became ultra-loyalists during the rebellion. With the conflict's end, however, they reverted to their former selves. "Their relapse to disunionism has been as sudden as their conversion to Unionism," the article proclaims. The Republicans' actions are motivated purely by their desire to increase their personal power and political influence.Our Assembly Ticket
(Column 4)Summary: Admonishes the men of Chambersburg who lost property or suffered damages as a result of the rebellion to consider the legislature's response to their demands for compensation. Only through a Democratic majority, the article contends, will their needs be met.
(Names in announcement: David L. Tressler, William McLellan)Full Text of Article:Arouse Democrats
Every man in Franklin county who has been plundered of his property by the rebels, and every sufferer by the burning of the town of Chambersburg should consider well before casting his ballot for representatives to the legislature. All previous applications to the legislature for a just indemnity for losses sustained through these sources, have failed through the hostility of Republican members, nearly every one of whom voted against relief, while on the other hand, every Democrat in the legislature cast his vote in favor of the righteous claim of our citizens. Such being the case, can any resaonable man hope anything from the justice, or generosity, of a Republican legislature?--We think by this time all should be satisfied that our only prospect of success in the matter, is through a Democratic majority at Harrisburg. We urge upon all to consider the matter well. If you do so, we feel assured that you will cast your votes for Wm. McLellan and David L. Tressler, the Democratic candidates. Mr. McLellan has been unceasing in his exertions to procure compensation to our citizens for losses sustained through the inability of the government to protect the border, and if elected, will do all that character, zeal and ability can effect in bringing about so desirable a result.
(Column 5)Summary: Based upon a quote from the Repository editor, the article suggests that even he is aware the Republicans' chances in the upcoming election are bleak.
Origin of Article: Patriot and UnionFull Text of Article:To the Young Men of the Democratic Party of Pennsylvania
Get up every one of you, and prepare for the good fight. See that you are assessed and your taxes paid. If the taxes are a little too heavy for the poorest of you, ask some friend, who has a dollar or two more than you have, to see the collector for you. But, by all means, do not lose your votes! Each one of you should labor to make another vote, by talking reason and common sense to some benighted victim of the shoddy, negro suffrage, anti-Johnson party.
By all means hold up your heads and be of good cheer. The skies are very bright. Our glorious old party is not dead, but is everywhere united, and harmonious as the "happy family." On the other hand the bone of contention has got among your opponents, and all is jealousy and discord.--Simon and Thad flout Bill and Andy, and Andy and Bill won't trust That and Simon, and so Aleck looks on in gloomy despondency, and vents his sad forebodings through his Repository, in this wise:
"Immediate and thorough organization only will save Pennsylvania this fall. Our opponents are well prepared for the contest. They will poll their fall vote. In the north east they will do quite as well as last year."
More than this: the Colonel admits (and he is a shrewd observer) that in the counties south of the Juniata and Susquehanna and east of the Alleghenies, Shoddy can't improve the vote of last October. More even than than this; he says "Philadelphia must fall off essentially in her vote," "from 2,500 to 3,000 and the adjoining county of Delawae can scarcely fail to be similarly affected!" Still more: he says that if the "Union strongholds"--Lancaster, Dauphin, Somerset, Bradford, Susquehanna, Tioga, Erie, Crawford, Indiana, Lawrence, Allegheny, &c., --"fail, as they did last year in October, the State will inevitably be lost!" Lost to shoddy, he means--but, oh glory, what a gain to patriotism, honesty, and every other public virtue.
So up and be doing, Democrats! One of the ablest and shrewdest of your opponents admits, as above, your power to carry the State! Do not let incaction wrest the victory from your grasp. you have a platform in which your malignant enemies cannot pick a flaw. Upon that platform you have two of the best and noblest soldiers of the war, whose wounds commend them to your sympathy and gratitude, and whose abilities and characters are most superior and pure. You have everything in your candidates to insure success; if you only perservere and work as gallantly as you did last fall. Let us all, then, go to work at once, and bring about such a victory as will forever overthrow negro suffrage, elevate the laboring classes, and strengthen President Johnson in his grand work OF RESTORING THE GLORIOUS OLD UNION.
(Column 5)Summary: Announces the desire of the Keystone Club of Pennsylvania, a Philadelphia-based organization, to recruit new auxiliary clubs in every city of the state.Samuel R. Boyd
(Column 5)Summary: Nominates Samuel R. Boyd for Sheriff.The Repository
(Names in announcement: Samuel R. Boyd)
(Column 5)Summary: The brief piece asserts that the Repository has reversed its position on President Johnson's Reconstruction policy, and now supports the views of Thad Stevens.To the People of Pennsylvania
(Column 6)Summary: Contains a circular from W. W. Wallace, chairman of the State Democratic Party.
Full Text of Article:Soldiers!
DEMOCRATIC STATE CENTRAL COM. ROOMS
PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 19, 1865.
You are upon the eve of a most important election.
Both political organizations have announced their platforms, and presented their candidates for your suffrages.
The Democratic party distinctly affirms its support of the policy of reconstruction adopted by President Johnson, and announces its opposition to negro suffreage and negro equality.
Upon these, THE REAL ISSUES OF THE CANVASS, the Republican platform is ambiguous, its candidates are mute, its central authority is silent.
We believe that is is your right to know their sentiments, and that they who seek your support should be frank in the expression of their opinions.
Can you sustain the President by voting for those who refuse to endorse his policy? Will you hazard the superiority of your race by voting for those who are unwilling to proclaim their belief in the inferiority of the negro?
DEMOCRATS OF PENNSYLVANIA!
Press home upon your antagonists the vital issues of the campaign.
Through the press and on the rostrum, in the field and in the workshop, demand that they shall answer.
Are you for or against President Johnson's policy of reconstruction!
Are you for or against negro suffrage and negro equality?
By order of the Democratic State Central Committee.
WILLIAM A. WALLACE,
(Column 6)Summary: Endorses Col. W. W. Davis and Col. Linton on the basis of their war heroics.Here's the Point
(Names in announcement: W. W. Davis, Col. Linton)
(Column 7)Summary: After quoting the Daily Hessian, a "radical" journal that maintains the Democrats will court the black vote two years from now should the freedmen be granted suffrage, the article asks whether white voters are willing to let the "one hundred and fifty thousand" blacks in the state hold the balance of power.
Origin of Article: Daily Hessian; Patriot and UnionEditorial Comment: "The radical daily Hessian says:"
Full Text of Article:
"What party, in less than two years, if the radicals carry their point, will be begging negroes for their votes? The Democratic party. Ought such a party to be entrusted with political power again?"
That organ supports Hartranft, Campbell and the radical Cameron-Stevens platform. Of course if those candidates shall be elected, the radical point will be carried, and, consequently, the Democracy "will be begging negroes for their votes." White men, it is for you to say whether the Democracy "will be begging negroes for their votes." Do you wish the one hundred and fifty thousand negroes in Pennsylvania to hold the balance of power--to elect your public officer, and to shape your legislation? If not, vote for Davis and Linton, and destroy radical negroism forever in our good old Commonwealth.
"Relief" for McConaughy
(Column )Summary: Ridicules the notion that David McConaughy, the Republican candidate for state senate, will press for border relief. The article endorses Calvin Duncan, McConaughy's Democratic opponent, instead.
(Names in announcement: David McConaughy, Calvin M. Duncan)Origin of Article: Compiler[No Title]
(Column 1)Summary: Declares the law granting election officials the right to deny the vote to men who avoided the draft as unconstitutional, and warns that Democrats will not accept its enforcement.Married
(Column 3)Summary: Solomon Moore, of Indiana, and Eliza Lindsay were married on Sept. 14th, by Rev. J. C. Smith.Married
(Names in announcement: Rev. J. C. Smith, Solomon Moore, Eliza Lindsay)
(Column 3)Summary: On Sept. 27th, Robert M. Bard, of Hamilton township, and Jinetta Aughenbaugh were married by Rev. S. McHenry.Died
(Names in announcement: Rev. S. McHenry, Robert M. Bard, Jinetta Aughenbaugh)
(Column 3)Summary: On Sept. 14th, Harriet Frederick's 14 month old son, Henry, died.Died
(Names in announcement: Harriet Frederick, Henry Frederick)
(Column 3)Summary: Sarah Gordon, daughter of Matthew Gordon of Greencastle, died on Sept. 15th. Sarah was 8 years old.Died
(Names in announcement: Sarah Gordon, Matthew Gordon)
(Column 3)Summary: On Sept. 20th, Nicholas Martin's son, Augustas Warner, died. Augustas was 10 months old.Died
(Names in announcement: Augustas Warner Martin, Nicholas Martin)
(Column 3)Summary: Samuel Fuller, son of J. N. and Susan Baxter, died on Sept. 11th, in Fayetteville. Samuel was 1 month old.
(Names in announcement: J. N. Baxter, Susan M. Baxter, Samuel Fuller Baxter)
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