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About the
Valley of the Shadow

Valley Virginian: August 28, 1867

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About Reconstruction
(Column 02)
Summary: The Valley Virginian stays by its stance that the South should accept the Military Bills, speedily re-enter the Union, and then regain control of their State governments.
Full Text of Article:

We have talked to numbers of the people lately and heard a portion of Gov. Peirpoint's speech on Monday. All the talk was about "reconstruction," and we found most people agreed with us, especially the old soldiers. Gov. Peirpont made a conciliatory speech and was listened to attentively by a large crowd. His views have been too often published to require a report from us. We should judge him to be a good-hearted man and believe he means well, when he urges reconstruction under the Military Bills. As to his Biblical talk, our people have heard Bishop Johns and Mr. Munsey. As to his theory upon education all agree that it is a "good thing" and that we should have plenty of it--especially the "rising generation." "Nobody was hurt" by Gov. Peirpont's speech and he made a "fair impression." Everybody said he was the man for next Governor, in preference to Hunnicut, and we believe it. We prefer him to Botts, and how would it do to elect a man like C. R. Mason, the great representative worker of the State?

It seems that some folks can't understand the Valley Virginian, because we say and do just what we please. We have a few words for all. Taking an honest, calm view of this reconstruction business, and looking at it in every light, we still reiterate the views we have so often expressed. We see but one path of safety, one road for our people to follow--and that is an honest acceptance of the Military Bills, as a guarantee to the North, and as a finality. It is to us a simple proposition. Shall we reconstruct in this new government, or leave the country? If we do our duty and remain, we must accept the terms of the conquering idea and control it. Then, without any "more foolishness," let every man determine to do his part, hard as it is; let us send men to the Convention who have the nerve to form a Constitution in conformity with the Military Bills, present it to Congress and come home.

This requires no party organization or "co-operation"; it is simply carrying out orders. If Congress refuses us, then a "re-action" occurs North and we are safe. If it accepts us we hold the balance of power, and can then decide with which party it is to our interests to act. We have not space to further elaborate the views so often expressed in this paper. The false and delusive idea of a "re-action North," in our favor, without a strict compliance with the Military Bills, is, to us, so preposterous that we can not account for Southern men indulging in it for a moment. No matter what Andrew Johnson may do, no matter what the brave gentlemen North, who allowed us to fight it out alone, may say and promise, we can see no "silver lining to the cloud" of our misfortunes, but a speedy compliance with the requirements of the Military Bills, and a united and honest effort on the part of all true men to keep our people united on this question.

Immigration As Wealth
(Column 02)
Summary: The paper reports that the value of an immigrant to the country has been calculated at $1,000 per person. The labor they provide contributes greatly to the wealth of a nation.
The Great Trouble
(Column 03)
Summary: This article argues that the trouble with American politics is the politicians. They are responsible for all the current problems in American life.
Augusta White Sulphur Springs
(Column 03)
Summary: The paper reminds visitors to the mountains not to forget Augusta's own White Sulphur Springs, only 13 miles from Staunton. Mr. J. A. Hefelfinger, the proprietor, runs a very attractive resort. "Invalids will find there White Sulphur, Alum, Chalybeate, Red Sweet and Free stone water, all within easy distance of the Hotel or Cabins; while seekers of pleasure can make up a full measure of enjoyment from the views of the mountains, the bracing air, the bowling alleys, billiard rooms, and last, but not least, the dining room, in which is daily spread the best the country can afford." A string band from Petersburg also performs in the evenings.
(Names in announcement: J. A. Hefelfinger)
Good Advice
(Column 03)
Summary: The paper endorses North Carolina Governor Vance's advice to the Freedmen that they put their trust in "the true and consistent men of the South, with whom they were born and raised" instead of radical northerners and their poor white followers. Still, Vance and the editors have "little hope that his advice will be taken, so industrious have been the efforts to make the colored men of his State think ill of those who were lately their masters, and to cause them to disregard and distrust everything which they might do or say."
The Final Remedy
(Column 06)
Summary: This excerpt from the Charlottesville Chronicle asserts that nobody can predict how reconstruction and the current political controversies will work out. "We stand in the midst of confusion--and no brain can compass such vast themes, and no eye penetrate the future. It is idle to worry ourselves." Instead, southerners should "work with our hands and have faith in God."

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[No Title]
(Column 01)
Summary: The paper warns that "we have but one speech to make to the colored folks. It is 'don't vote.'"
A Stage Item
(Column 01)
Summary: A stage coach leaves Staunton for Augusta Springs at 4p.m. every day except Sunday.
[No Title]
(Column 01)
Summary: Winfield Goff, "a colored man of conservative principles," was allegedly "taken from his bed in Salem last week, whipped and robbed, by the colored Loyal League."
(Names in announcement: Winfield Goff)
[No Title]
(Column 01)
Summary: The paper reports that "negroes and 'mean whites' have established a Loyal League in Fincastle. 'Dr.' Brown, so-called, the negro disorganizer, has been nosing around about there making speeches."
(Names in announcement: Dr. Brown)
[No Title]
(Column 02)
Summary: The paper applauds the decision of the Manassas Gap Railroad bond holders of Augusta County to transfer their bonds to the Orange and Alexandria consolidation.
Good Yield
(Column 02)
Summary: John A. Harman, who lives two miles east of Staunton, allegedly harvested 1,367 bushels of wheat from 54 acres, a yield of over 25 bushels per acre.
(Names in announcement: John A. Harman)
Municipal Officers
(Column 02)
Summary: Mr. Patterson, Staunton town clerk, presented to the district Registration Officer a list of current and former town office-holders who are still living. Mayor: Kenton Harper, 1835, 1837 and 1840; Levi L. Stevenson, 1848; Thomas P. Eskridge, 1851; Nicholas K. Trout, 1852 to present. Recorder: Thomas J. Michie, 1844; John B. Baldwin, 1848 and 1849; Hugh W. Sheffey, 1850; James H. Skinner, 1852; Albert J. Garber, 1853, 1854, and 1855; George M. Cochran, 1857; George Baylor, 1858 and 1859; Benjamin Crawford, 1860; Michael G. Harman, 1861. Aldermen: Dr. F. T. Stribling, 1837, 1838, 1839, and 1841; Henry Bare, 1840 and 1841; David Fultz, 1840 and 1842; William W. Donaghe, 1841, 1842, and 1843; Alexander H. H. Stuart, 1844, 1847 and 1848; Benjamin F. Points, 1844, 1845, 1848, 1850, 1851 and 1852; James F. Patterson, 1844; William H. Garber, 1846 and 1850; James W. Hudson, 1851; R. W. Stevenson, 1851, 1852 and 1853; A. M. Simpson, 1852, 1853, and 1854; Edwin M. Cushing, 1853, 1854, and 1856; S. M. Yost, 1854, 1855, 1856, and 1861; Richard W. Hardy, 1855; Joseph N. Woodward, 1855; William G. Sterrett, 1856, 1857, 1858, 1859, and 1860; J. B. Scherer, 1856; A. Lushbaugh, 1857, 1858, and 1859; John D. Imboden, 1857, 1858, 1859, 1860, 1861; Simpson F. Taylor, 1859 and 1860; George E. Price, 1861; William H. Wilson, 1861. Clerk: James F. Patterson, 1845 to the present. Sergeant: William Craig, 1850; Henry H. Peck, 1858; Robert W. Stevenson, 1860. Commissioner of Revenue: R. W. Stevenson, 1859; John F. Smith, 1861. Attorney for the Commonwealth: Thomas J. Michie, 1840. Overseer of the Poor: A. M. Simpson, 1850; A. Lushbaugh, 1845; A. H. Taylor, 1856; R. H. Fisher, 1858; A. H. Taylor, 1859; P. B. Hoge, 1860.
(Names in announcement: Kenton Harper, Levi L. Stevenson, Thomas P. Eskridge, Nicholas K. Trout, Thomas J. Michie, John B. Baldwin, Hugh W. Sheffey, James H. Skinner, Albert J. Garber, George M. Cochran, George Baylor, Benjamin Crawford, Michael G. Harman, Dr. F. T. Stribling, Henry Bare, David Fultz, William W. Donaghe, Alexander H. H. Stuart, Benjamin F. Points, James F. Patterson, William H. Garber, James W. Hudson, Robert W. Stevenson, A. M. Simpson, Edwin M. Cushing, S. M. Yost, Richard W. Hardy, Joseph N. Woodward, William G. Sterrett, J. B. Scherer, A. Lushbaugh, John D. Imboden, Simpson F. Taylor, George E. Price, William H. Wilson, William Craig, Henry H. Peck, John F. Smith, A. H. Taylor, R. H. Fisher, P. B. Hoge)
Another Brave Boy Gone
(Column 03)
Summary: W. S. Grove, Company L, 5th Va. Regiment, Stonewall Brigade, passed away. The Augusta Fire Company, "his old companions in Arms and numbers of our citizens" made up the funeral procession. "He was a brave, true-hearted boy, beloved by all and mourned for by the whole community. He lost his arm at the battle of Petersburg, and has been a sufferer ever since. Peace to his ashes!"
(Names in announcement: W. S. Grove)
Enforce the Laws
(Column 03)
Summary: The editors suggest that the Street Commissioners take a "tour of inspection" through Staunton's alleys and back yards in order to enforce Staunton's laws regarding cleaning and use of lime. "The Street Commissioners caught very bad colds, or they would have detected the thousand and one separate and distinct smells that exist in Staunton," the paper jokes.

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[No Title]
(Column 01)
Summary: The paper rejoices at the New York Herald's endorsement of a "white man's government." "This shows that the editor, who always seeks to interpret the popular will, sees that the mongrel party has had its day. We cordially go with the Herald for new men, measures, and a white country."