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Valley of the Shadow

Valley Spirit: January 6, 1864

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-Page 01-

Description of Page: Includes a list of advertisers in the issue, and an indictment of Charles Sumner and Massachusetts for being hypocritical on the slavery issue, in view of that state's record with Indian tribes.

Our Washington Letter
(Column 3)
Summary: A correspondent to the Spirit and Times writes of an anecdote regarding a Treasury Department official whose responsibility it was to burn old demand notes. In fact, he had been discovered hoarding the notes for his own use. The writer uses this as an illustration of the general corruption of the administration, claiming "that there has never been an administration in Washington under which fraud was carried on as openly and boldly as now." He goes on to add that the exchange of prisoners with the Confederates has broken down because of the dispute over the status of black soldiers. An order was also issued prohibiting the recruitment of black soldiers in Washington by agents from the Northern states.
Trailer: Conococheague

-Page 02-

Description of Page: Fiction and classified advertisements

-Page 03-

Description of Page: Poetry and four columns of classified advertisements

-Page 04-

Description of Page: The rebuttal to Niccolls takes up five out of six columns.

Mr. Niccolls on the War
(Column 1)
Summary: The editors attempt to refute, point by point, a sermon given by Rev. Samuel J. Niccolls, "the zealous and eloquent pastor" of the Chambersburg Presbyterian Church, which was published in the Repository on December 23. First, they argue, the law has not retained its supremacy in the country, as evidenced by the suspension of habeas corpus. Second, the country is not in a state of prosperity, as Niccolls would like to claim. Third, Niccolls' assertion that slavery is a crime contradicts both the intention of the framers of the Constitution and Biblical law. The editors argue that slavery for blacks is set out in the Bible. If Niccolls chooses to preach against it, he is no longer preaching the Gospel.
(Names in announcement: Rev. Samuel J. Niccolls)

-Page 05-

Description of Page: Includes war news from Charleston and classified advertisements.

New Year's Eve
(Column 1)
Summary: The editors condemn the practice of firing off weapons on New Year's Eve.
Death of Archbishop Hughes
(Column 1)
Summary: Archbishop Hughes of the Catholic Church of New York died recently. He was a native of Ireland and a former resident of Chambersburg. His brother Michael still lives in Franklin County. Hughes was appointed Archbishop in 1850.
(Names in announcement: Archbishop Hughes, Michael Hughes)
House Burned
(Column 1)
Summary: The house of John B. Guyer in Mount Pleasant caught fire from the chimney on Thursday, December 24, and was entirely consumed. The family was absent at the time, and nothing was rescued from the house.
(Names in announcement: John B. Guyer)
Another Fire
(Column 1)
Summary: The old distillery on the farm of Joseph C. Kennedy, southwest of town, burned last Monday from some coal tar being heated on the stove. Word was sent at once to town, but it was difficult to get the fire engines across the Conococheague. The building was almost entirely consumed by the time the engines arrived. It is understood that most of the valuable machinery had been removed prior to the fire.
(Names in announcement: Joseph C. Kennedy)
Sudden Death
(Column 1)
Summary: David Over of Strasburg died suddenly on Tuesday, December 29 of heart disease. He was a "highly respected and useful citizen," and will be missed. He was 58.
(Names in announcement: David Over)
Another Death
(Column 1)
Summary: Thomas McGrath died suddenly at the home of his brother, the sheriff, on Friday afternoon. He went to his room in his usual health and was found a few minutes later, face down on his bed, dead. "He was an industrious and worthy man," conclude the editors.
(Names in announcement: Thomas McGrath, Sheriff McGrath)
Sunday School Festival
(Column 2)
Summary: The children of the Presbyterian Sunday School were treated to a festival on New Year's Eve. Rev. J. W. Wightman of Greencastle and Rev. Niccolls addressed the scholars. The scholars then sang several pieces of sacred music, and were then each given a present of a package of sweetmeats. The church was beautifully decorated, and the exercises "were of a peculiarly interesting character."
(Names in announcement: Rev. J. W. Wightman, Rev. Mr. Niccolls)
A Rebel Raid
(Column 2)
Summary: There are rumors that General Early is contemplating a raid up the Valley of Virginia, though the editors do not put much stock in it.
Full Text of Article:

There are indications that the rebel General Early comtemplates [sic] a movement up the Valley of Virginia, and perhaps on this side of the Potomac. He has been hovering, with a considerable force, about Strasburg: and the last advices [sic] from Winchester state that our pickets have been driven in. We have come to believe that speculation upon army movements amounts to very little, and have concluded patiently to wait the upshot of events; we advise our readers to "Keep their powder dry" and follow the same course.

The Banner Town
(Column 2)
Summary: The editors print a report from Greencastle which informs them that that town has filled its quota of volunteers with a subscription drive for bounties. The editors ask, "Is there any valid reason why Chambersburg should not be the second on the list?"
Recruiting Station
(Column 2)
Summary: Captain Ward of Company D, 11th Pennsylvania Cavalry, has been detailed to open a recruiting office in Chambersburg. His office is in the room lately occupied by Snively Strickler, Esq., and any patriotic citizens who "wish to accept the large bounties now offered by the Government and the Borough of Chambersburg" should go see him.
(Names in announcement: Captain Ward, Snively StricklerEsq.)
Re-enlistments Credited on Quota
(Column 2)
Summary: The War Department has decided to credit the states with the men who have re-enlisted, as part of their quota of 300,000. It is expected that 75,000 men will be obtained in that way; 120,000 more are expected to volunteer, leaving about 100,000 to be drafted.
A Large Porker
(Column 2)
Summary: Lawrence Berger of Hamilton Township recently slaughtered a two-year-old hog which yielded over 600 pounds of clean meat.
(Names in announcement: Lawrence Berger)
From the Valley of Virginia
(Column 3)
Summary: A report of a skirmish between the 21st Penn. Cavalry and a Confederate party near Winchester. General Early is reportedly in Middletown with 5,000 men.
(Column 5)
Summary: Thomas Metcalf and Sarah Paxton (daughter of Hon. W. W. Paxton), of Chambersburg, were married on January 5.
(Names in announcement: Rev. Thomas Barnhart, Thomas Metcalf, Sarah C. Paxton, Hon. W. W. Paxton)
(Column 5)
Summary: Michael Rider of Peters Township, and Jinnie Fritz of Warren Township, were married on December 29.
(Names in announcement: Michael Rider, Jinnie Fritz, Rev. Thomas Barnhart)
(Column 5)
Summary: John B. Davison and Martha A. Young (eldest daughter of Jacob Young, Esq.) of Antrim Township were married on December 29 at the residence of the bride's parents.
(Names in announcement: Rev. W. R. H. Deatrich, John Davison, Martha A. Young, Jacob YoungEsq.)
(Column 5)
Summary: David Over died on December 29 at age 59.
(Names in announcement: David Over)
(Column 5)
Summary: Private W. H. Goldsmith of Company L, 21st Penn. Cavalry, died on January 3 in Fayetteville, aged 18 years, 10 months and 3 days.
(Names in announcement: Private W. H. Goldsmith)

-Page 06-

Description of Page: Classified advertisements

-Page 07-

Description of Page: Agricultural advice and classified advertisements

-Page 08-

Description of Page: Four columns of classified advertisements

The Next President--Who Shall He be
(Column 1)
Summary: The writers suggest that the next president should be a man from outside Washington, youthful, with military experience--strong, skillful, and free of the influences of "old political bonds."
Origin of Article: Journal of Commerce