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Valley of the Shadow

Valley Spirit: March 13, 1861

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-Page 01-

Description of Page: Column 1 poetry. Bottom illegible.

The Inaugural Address of Mr. Lincoln
(Column 2)
Summary: Criticizes Lincoln's inaugural for being vague and dodging the necessity of voicing a policy.
Inauguration of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States
(Column 4)
Summary: Recounts the festivities of Lincoln's inauguration.
The Question of Peace or War Brought to the Test
(Column 5)
Summary: States that Lincoln's address failed to clarify the nation's future course but has instead only added "smoke to the fog."
Origin of Article: New York Herald
Important from Washington
(Column 6)
Summary: Reports that Lincoln is in favor of Seward's suggestion to appoint Crittenden to the Supreme Court, but he does not want to draw the criticism of the radical wing of his party.

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Description of Page: Poetry and fiction

The designs of Redpath, John Brown, Jr., and Fred Douglas, etc.
(Column 5)
Summary: Alleges that Northern abolitionists are conspiring to consummate a war upon the South.

-Page 03-

Description of Page: Advertisements

Mr. Lincoln's Whiskers and the Girls
(Column 1)
Summary: Accuses Lincoln of crass and frivolous behavior.

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News of the Week
(Column 1)
Summary: Includes many items of national news, including reaction to the Inaugural, political maneuverings, news from Sumter, and news from the Southern states.
Our Turnpikes
(Column 2)
Summary: News and opinion regarding the Turnpike act.
Full Text of Article:

In our last issue we published an act recently passed relative to the Turnpikes in our borough, with some comments, that we deemed appropriate, thereon. Since then the Times which professes so much regard for tax payers has taken up its bludgeon in favor of the Companies, and thinks that what has been done is about right, and that our citizens ought to be taxed for the benefit of the stock-holders in the Turnpike companies.

On a more thorough examination of this matter we are more firmly convinced than ever that the course of those who got up and passed this bill, is wholly indefensible and unjustifiable. It was not printed in either branch of the Legislature- -no copies of it were sent to our borough authorities or any citizen of the place--nor were the people, whose rights are invaded by this bill, informed in any manner in relation to it, or given any chance to remonstrate against it.

The principal argument, (if it may be dignified with the name of argument,) used by the few interested in the bill, is that the Turnpike companies are only bound by their charters to make their roads to the borough line and not to the centre of the borough. If they are not bound to make their roads to the centre of the diamond, and have a right to stop at the borough line, why was it necessary to get an act of Assembly authorizing them to abandon those parts of their roads in the borough limits. And besides this, our borough limits have been extended very considerable since the turnpikes were constructed, and who then is to make the roads between the old and new borough lines? The tax-payers of the borough, of course, and that is the object of the passage of this bill. Our citizens are taxed heavily enough already without having this additional load imposed upon them for the benefit of a few individuals who have bought up nearly all the stock of the turnpike companies at a very low figure.

In early times the Legislature of the State felt very anxious to open up the country, and cause its speedy settlement. One of the medes adopted for this purpose was the building of Turnpikes, and to all such enterprises the State contributed liberally by taking stock.

On the 24th of February, 1806 an act was passed for the building of a Turnpike road from Harrisburg, through Carlisle, Chambersburg, Bedford, &c. to Pittsburgh. The road was to be piked 22 feet wide with stone, gravel, or some other proper substance and permanent bridges were to be erected over all streams.

On the 31st of March, 1807, a Supplement to the above act was passed, which says--"That for the purpose of making an artificial or Turnpike road from Harrisburg to Pittsburgh through Carlisle, Chambersburg, Bedford, &c., six companies may be incorporated--one to make that part of the road in Cumberland county--one, that in Franklin--one, that in Bedford--one, that in Somerset--one, that in Westmoreland--and one that in Allegheny. The State subscribed largely to the stock of each of these companies, but the roads were not made because of the smallness of the individual subscriptions. The great object in view evidently was a continuous road from Harrisburg to Pittsburgh.

On the 9th of March, 1814, an act Supplementary to the acts on this subject was passed, the first section of which says "That for the purpose of making a Turnpike FROM HARRISBURG TO PITTSBURGH"--5 companies may be incorporated, viz.: One to make the road from Harrisburg to Chambersburg--one from Chambersburg to Bedford, and so on. This is the act under which the roads were made, and the act under which they have been kept up for almost half a century, but it is now revealed for the first time that because the acts read from Harrisburg to Chambersburg and from Chambersburg to Bedford that, therefore, these companies are not bound to make their roads further than our borough lines! That this is the true construction of the law no one, we presume, will make himself so ridiculous as to attempt seriously to argue. The builders of the road constructed the act to mean the centre of the town, but the repairers, more wise than they, have pretended to discover at this late day that it means the borough lines, although the act says not one word about borough lines, but provides expressly for "a turnpike from Harrisburg to Pittsburgh."

The Legislature of the State wanted a road from Harrisburg to Pittsburgh. They first chartered one company to make it. That failed. They then authorized one for each county, under which the road would have been made "through" the whole length of our town. That failed also. They then passed the act of 1814, under which the roads were made, which provides for a road the whole distance from Harrisburg to Pittsburgh. How could that road be made continuously, if any company was to stop short of a point that would connect its road with the next. Besides the 3d, 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th sections of the act of 1814, when providing for the organization of the 5 companies, says of each that it shall have the powers and be subject to the duties of the Company of 1806, among which was the making of a continuous road, as stated, through the borough of Chambersburg, &c.

These several companies put their own construction on this law by commencing their roads at the centre of our diamond, exacting toll, putting up milestones measuring from the centre of town, and keeping those portions of their roads in repair for nearly fifty years past. They now want to palm them on the borough and have had an act quietly passed through our Legislature for that purpose. Will our citizens stand it? Will they tamely submit to being burdened with this extra load of taxation without raising a finger, or uttering a word against the iniquitous act and those who have been instrumental in having it passed?

We find on examination that the road from Harrisburg to this place cost $234, 479, of which the State paid $106, 202 53--and individuals $75,5 55. The road from here to Bedford cost, if we are rightly informed, something over $300, 000--of which the State paid $216, 056 72. Thus near $325, 000 of the peoples money was contributed to build these roads--and the stock has since gone into the coffers of the companies, or into private hands, at about one dollar for fifty originally paid, and yet after getting this much from the public, these grasping corporations want to compel that public to keep up their roads!

The latest argument we have heard advanced to justify the passage of this act is that the Stone bridge over the Conococheague Creek was not built by the company-- that it is a county bridge built in 1810 or 12. This may be so. We have not hunted up the facts in the case. If it be true then it is the more shame for the turnpike company, that after using the bridge for almost fifty years to now refuse to keep it up. If the bridge was built by the county it was just that much expense saved to the Bedford Company. Their report to the Governor in 1820 says that their road is 55 miles and 3 perches long, commencing at the public square in the Borough of Chambersburg and ending in the centre of the Borough of Bedford. They would therefore, be compelled to build a bridge over the Conococheague had they not found one ready for their use. They have ever since used it, and kept it in repair, but now a new order of things is to be introduced and the tax-payers of the borough are expected to acquiesce without a murmur, in this invasion on their rights.

We might present many other reasons why this bill should not be allowed to stand as a law but, will only add for the present, that its operation will entail several hundred dollars per year expenses on the borough, and further, there is no other borough on the line of the road, from Harrisburg to Pittsburgh that is required to make their roods. The whole road is kept up, and must be kept up by the Turnpike Companies.

We will have something more to lay before our readers on this subject, next week, and, perhaps, some curious developments in relation to the management of some of these roads that may prove interesting to a portion of the stock-holders.

An Office Seeker
(Column 3)
Summary: Reports that John M. Pumeroy, a former Chambersburg resident, is an applicant for the position of Naval Officer at Philadelphia.
Carl Schurz
(Column 4)
Summary: Accuses Pennsylvania Republicans of Know-Nothingism in their opposition of Carl Schurz's appointment as Minister Resident to Sardinia.
A Crisis at the "Times"
(Column 4)
Summary: Alleges that the Times is angry that the Spirit published Lincoln's address first.
Acknowledgments to Ex-Senator Bigler
(Column 4)
Summary: Shares Crittenden's praise of Ex-Senator Bigler.
Affairs in Washington
(Column 5)
Summary: News regarding Fort Sumter and office seekers filing applications for office.
The Basis of Adjustment
(Column 5)
Summary: Transcript of the entire series of resolutions adopted by the committee of thirty-three.
George Washington
(Column 6)
Summary: Letter writer lauds the accomplishments of Washington.

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Dental Surgeon
(Column 2)
Summary: J.S. Trout received the Degree of Doctor of Dental Surgery.
(Names in announcement: J. Trout)
(Column 2)
Summary: B. McHenry wishes to thank his Fayetteville Friends for their valuable donation.
(Names in announcement: B. McHenry)
(Column 1)
Summary: Gives information about vaccinations. Article nearly illegible.
Full Text of Article:

--M. Heminokx has detailed to the Belgian Academy of Medicine the results of the re-vaccinations put into force at the prisons of Ghent and Vilvorde, the subjects together amounted to one thousand and six hundred and sixty. Of these, three hundred and seventy-nine, or sixteen per cent., were vaccinated with success; there were in seven hundred and sixteen manifest traces of a prior vaccination, and four hundred and seventy one exhibited marks of small-pox. Of the seven hundred and sixteen, sixteen per cent., and of the four hundred and seventy-one, forty six per cent. were vaccinated with success. The author's conclusions, from these and other cases, are as follows:

First, the re-vaccination of subjects who have been well vaccinated produces generally but very few useful effects; second, persons who have been the subjects of variola have much more cause to be re-vaccinated than those who have undergone proper vaccination; third, re-vaccination is successful in proportion to the length of time which has elapsed since the first vaccination or the attack of variola; fourth, until the age of twenty-five, it is generally useless; fifth, from that age to thirty-five it gives rise to useful effects in a certain number of individuals, but this number is so extremely small, that without proscribing it in such persons, it need not be recommended to them; sixth, after thirty-five, it becomes a sure preservative, and consequently necessary; seventh, its failure at one period furnishes no reason for not having recourse to it at other epochs, as there is no reason to suppose that the receptivity may not return between the one and the other operation.

Who They Are and What They Are
(Column 2)
Summary: Gives a brief biographical sketch of each of Lincoln's cabinet members.
(Column 4)
Summary: Married on February 14th in Shippensburg.
(Names in announcement: Rev. Westly How, David Flood, Sarah Barney)
(Column 4)
Summary: Died on February 16th of scarlet fever, aged 8 years.
(Names in announcement: Sarah Reichard)
(Column 4)
Summary: Hannah M. Reichard, sister of Sarah, died on February 24th, also of scarlet fever. She was 21 years old.
(Names in announcement: Hannah Reichard)
(Column 4)
Summary: Mary Catharine died on March 10th, aged 2 years.
(Names in announcement: Mary Catharine Wingerd, Joseph Wingerd)
(Column 4)
Summary: Died on February 26th, aged 80 years.
(Names in announcement: Anna Mary Flinder)
(Column 4)
Summary: Jeanette died on March 2 of scarlet fever, aged 6 years.
(Names in announcement: Jeanette Senseny, Dr. A.H. Senseny, Jane Senseny)

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Description of Page: Advertisements

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Description of Page: Advertisements

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Description of Page: Advertisements

The News
(Column 1)
Summary: News regarding the secession crisis, including information from the seceded states and the border states.
Blockade of the Southern Ports
(Column 2)
Summary: The British government gives notice that it will not respect a blockade of the Southern Ports unless it is made effectual.
A Detected Insurrection
(Column 2)
Summary: Reports discovery of an alleged slave insurrection in Acadia County. scarcely legible, including origin and trailer.
Origin of Article: Richmond Enquirer
Trailer: Richmond Enquirer
Repeal of the Tonnage Tax
(Column 3)
Summary: Reports the repeal of the Tonnage Tax.
Pennsylvania Legislature
(Column 3)
Summary: Gives the occupational composition of the Pennsylvania Legislature.