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Valley of the Shadow

Valley Spirit: February 14, 1866

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-Page 01-

Governor Curtin's Message
(Column 3)
Summary: Provides a transcript of Governor Curtin's speech before the legislature on Jan. 30, 1866. The address makes specific references to Chambersburg and the damages suffered by town residents as a result of the various border skirmishes.

-Page 02-

Address of the Democratic State Central Committee
(Column 1)
Summary: Contains a copy of the speech given by W. W. Wallace, the Chairman of the State Democratic Party, on Feb. 9, 1866. In his address Wallace called on the party faithful to "sustain the President" and "vindicate the supremacy" of their "race."
Full Text of Article:


HARRISBURG, Feb. 9, 1866

To the Democracy of Pennsylvania:

The events of the last political canvas are yet fresh in your minds.

You announced your unequivocal endorsement of the restoration policy of President Johnson, and denounced the doctrine of negro suffrage.

Your opponents affirmed their support of the President, and evaded the issue upon the question of suffrage.

A powerful organization, large official patronage and an unscrupulous use of money, secured to them the victory.

The record of the past month stripe the weak from the face of the victors.

They treat with derision the declared policy of the president. They have placed the Government of the Constitution in abeyance, and its legislative and executive functions are usurped by a cabal of men, who in obedience to caucus, govern the nation through the forms of a directory.

The right of each State to regulate the qualifications of the electors is denied; the will of the people of the District of Columbia to overridden, and by an almost unanimous vote. The Republican party in Congress and the State Legislature accord to the negro equal political rights with the white man.

The initial step toward a war of races has been taken, and a consolidated government looms up in the distance.

The tents of the President upon these points are our cardinal doctrines. In sustaining him we vindicate them.

Organize in every nook and corner of the Commonwealth.

Organize to maintain the President, to maintain your principles, to restore the Union, to vindicate the supremacy of your race, and to bring in political oblivion the men who have been false to the Union, false to their pledges, false to the instincts of their blood, and true alone to the madness that rules the hour.

By the order of the Democratic State Central Committee.


Trailer: William A. Wallace
The Basis of Representation
(Column 2)
Summary: Attacking what it deems to be a dangerous trend, the editorial criticizes Radicals' various attempts to alter the Constitution since the end of the war. Using a bill recently introduced by Congressman John Broomhall, a representative from the Keystone state, the piece illustrates how the unintended consequences of these measures may actually do more harm than good.
Origin of Article: Washington
Full Text of Article:

Quite a number of Constitutional amendments to regulate the basis of representation in Congress, has been proposed in that body. All of them are crude and not likely to obtain the end aimed at. The most stupid is that of Hon. John M. Broomall of this State which is as follows:

"That representation and direct taxation shall be apportioned among the States which shall be in the Union according to their numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed; Provided, whenever the elective franchise shall be denied by the Constitution or laws of any State to any portion of their male citizens above the age of twenty-one years, the same proportion shall be excluded from the basis of representation."

The effect of this amendment would be directly the reverse of the object which these men seek--to compel the Southern States to give the right to vote to the freedmen, or else lose members of Congress in proportion to the whole colored population. Mr. Broomall's amendment will not effect this object, but will give the Southern States an increased number of representatives. Thus in South Carolina the late slave population numbered in 1860 over 400,000, which, at the present ratio, of representation, would give three members of Congress for that portion of her population. Now if South Carolina will not confer the right of suffrage on about eighty thousand males old enough to vote, that number under Mr. Broomall's proportion, will be excluded from the basis of representation. Under the present representation of three-fifths this 400,000 is counted only as 240,000, and if the 80,000 males were excluded, it would leave 320,000 who would all be counted and the represented portion would be increased to four-fifths.

The mode of compelling the Southern States to give the right to vote to the negroes, would seem to us not to be very objectionable, and we think those States should not be very much averse to it, as instead of losing members, they will gain, and their representation in Congress be increased thereby. Let these Constitution tinkers go on; give them plenty of rope and they will undoubtedly hang themselves.

[No Title]
(Column 2)
Summary: Congratulates George Sanderson, a "sterling and uncompromising old Democrat," who was re-elected mayor of Lancaster on Feb. 6th. According to the article, Sanderson managed to prevail in the contest in spite of the "most strenuous exertions [that] were made by the negroites" who sought to defeat him.
The Coffroth and Koontz Muddle
(Column 3)
Summary: Contains a copy of the report issued by the Congressional Committee, which awarded Gen. Coffroth the Sixteenth District's seat in the disputed election with Koontz, his Republican challenger.
"That Man at the Other end of the Avenue"
(Column 4)
Summary: Making reference to a quote by Thad Stevens that castigated the President for his Reconstruction policies, the article mocks the Radicals' support of black suffrage, as contrary to the country's democratic principles. The piece also includes extracts from a conversation between Frederick Douglas and Andrew Johnson that took place during the president's meeting with a delegation of leading black men.
Origin of Article: Philadelphia Age
The Freedmen's Bureau
(Column 5)
Summary: After detailing the particulars of a proposed bill to enlarge the Freedmen's Bureau, the article criticizes the plan because "it's only effect would be to maintain an army of greedy office-holders, and a million or more ... lazy negroes in idleness." Additionally, charges the author of the piece, the legislation would "paralyze the industry of the South" and "retard the sorely needed development of its resources."
Full Text of Article:

The Senate has passed the "bill to enlarge the powers of the Freedmen's Bureau."

Its provisions cover all the lately seceded States. All this vast area it divides into "districts," these districts, again, are divided into sub-districts, containing a county each, and furnished each with a local agent. This local agent is to receive a yearly salary of $1,500. And, as there are to be nearly a thousand of these new office-holders, the cost of keeping them would considerably exceed a million dollars a year; which in addition to the people's already enormous taxes is, however, by no means the worst feature of this Freedmen's Bureau bill. It aims to throw the whole burden of the support and care of an immense mass of the Southern negroes upon the government.

The plan, stated in plain, truthful terms is exactly this: A plan to establish a vast Government Almshouse for negroes; and to provide a thousand more office-seekers with fat and lazy offices.

By the provisions of the bill, the Secretary of War is authorized to "issue provisions, clothing, fuel, and other supplies, including medical stores and transportation, as may be deemed needful."

That this would practically establish a gigantic Government Poor-house for the negroes, is beyond dispute or denial. Naturally lazy, the Southern negro would at once avail himself of this offer of Government care and support. He has been told by the Abolition emissaries connected with the present establishment that he need have no care for the future; and he believes it. He has been taught to believe that "the Government" would soon seize and parcel out to the negroes the farms and plantations of the South, stock them, and furnish them with all the necessary appliances for easy and comfortable living. General Grant discovered the influence of these mischievous tales among the negroes of every portion of the south; the negroes believe they are to be supported by the government, the fact is abundantly confirmed from all quarters. This measure which has passed the Senate carries out their idea in practice. It would cost the people not less than Fifteen Millions a year, in addition to their present taxes; and its only effect would be to maintain an army of greedy office-holders, and a million or more of lazy negroes in idleness, while its tendency would be directly to override the inhabitants and paralyze the industry of the South, and to retard the sorely needed development of its resources.

It is amazing that a measure to force upon the Government the care and support of a million lazy negroes could have passed the Senate even in these crazy times. It can hardly be supposed that such a measure meets any favor from the President. Indeed it seems calculated directly to interfere with and embarrass his policy of Restoration. But it has passed the Senate, and what hope is there that it will be defeated in the House?

A Hit--A Palpable Hit
(Column 6)
Summary: The article applauds a recent measure sardonically put forth by a Congressman from Illinois calling for the establishment of "White Man's Day," to be held one out of every six days that Congress devotes to public business.
Full Text of Article:

In the House of Representatives recently, Mr. Ross, of Illinois, moved an amendment of the rules so that one day in six of the time spent by Congress might be devoted to the public business, to be called the "White Man's Day."

Of course the resolution was tabled instantly. The Rump Congress finds it better worth while to try to save the Republican party than to restore the Union; and so, instead of taking care of the national affairs of thirty millions of people, it spends all its time upon the local affairs of six or eight millions, who are quite capable of managing them for themselves. One of these days the thirty millions will wake up and drive out these wretched fanatics, who are practicing strangulation upon the political and commercial life of the Republic. That will be the "white man's day."

(Column 6)
Summary: Brutus, the Spirit's correspondent in Harrisburg, reports that, after a lengthy debate, legislators approved the bill to provide relief for the residents of Chambersburg. The measure passed by a vote of 73 to 23, with the most vocal opposition coming from McKinlay, of Lawrence, McAffee, of Westmoreland, and Mann, of Potter.
Trailer: Brutus

-Page 03-

[No Title]
(Column 2)
Summary: The letter offers high praise for the Fannettsburg Lyceum, which "Delt" contends is an excellent institution because it provides members of the community with an "intellectual stimulus" and an opportunity "for self-improvement."
(Names in announcement: Col. R. W. McAllen, D. F. Noble, J. T. Moore, B. C. Dawney, W. S. McAllen)
Full Text of Article:

"The Fannettsburg Lyceum" which, for years before, and until the war, was conducted with such zeal, calling in all the talent of the valley, as well as talented lecturers from abroad, in which Chambersburg in no small degree contributed, has again been revived with Col. R. W. McAllen, as President; D. F. Noble, as Vice President; John T. Moore, as Secretary; B. C. Dawney, as editor; and W. S. McAllen, as Assistant Editor. The writer hereof can refer to the association with no more force than in the following clipping: "It has always been our opinion that no place of any considerable size should be without such an institution; and we regard it as a favorable citizen that Lectures and Literary Associations seem to be among the dominant ideas of the times. As a source of recreation and relief from the monotony of the wintry season they are of great service and besides their healthy excitement they are, or ought to be a source of substantial mental benefit. That both these ends have been gained by the Society both for the persons who have participated in the exercises, and for those who have been auditors, we think is generally acknowledged. The eminent success of the association has been as gratifying as it was desirable. The debates have varied very much both in merit and interest; as all public efforts will which are for the most part extemporaneous in their character,--at one time full of spirit and enthusiasm, and at another dragging heavily their slow length along. But undoubtedly the main feature of the Association has been its series of Lectures. Here the sustained interest marked the high measure of success. All the lecturers were taken from our own county, and the supply has not been exhausted. As a whole, we have no hesitation in saying, the lectures were of a very high order. To this we can scarcely think of a single exception. Nothing was more evident than the intellectual stimulus which the occasion afforded to many comparatively unaccustomed to such exercise. And such stimulus will not unfrequently bring out a man more than a casual observer would ever suppose to be in him, and more than he ever reckoned on himself. Here is then one of the more decided advantages of such an institution, the opportunity it affords for self improvement, and the salutary necessity of intellectual effort it lays upon some who are gifted for it, and who yet would not put it forth without such a stimulus. Many a man who has figured largely on the broadest arena of the world has been roused to the conciousness of his powers, by some such apparently insignificant occasion. And as a general rule the audience will be interested and profited in proportion to the advantage which accrues to the lecturer himself. The habitually large audiences which have assembled attest that there is really a disposition among us to appreciate intellectual effort. We hope that such an association will be one of the standing facts at least of our winter months."


Trailer: "Delt"
[No Title]
(Column 2)
Summary: The letter endorses the proposal to build the Normal School in Chambersburg, employing several rationales to justify the move.
(Column 4)
Summary: On Jan. 26th, Dr. Henry Largenreine and Elizabeth Linbeat, of Carlisle, were married by Rev. R. Roth.
(Names in announcement: Rev. R. Roth, Dr. Henry Largenreine, Elizabeth Linbeat)
(Column 4)
Summary: Edward Monart and Amelia Bauer were married on Feb. 6th, by Rev. R. Roth.
(Names in announcement: Rev. R. Roth, Edward Monart, Amelia Bauer)
(Column 4)
Summary: On Feb. 8th, Daniel Bear and Rebecca Arnold were wed in a ceremony performed by Rev. Thomas Creigh.
(Names in announcement: Rev. Thomas Creigh, Daniel Bear, Rebecca Arnold)
(Column 4)
Summary: On Feb. 6th, Peter North and Mary E. Miller were married by Rev. Joseph King.
(Names in announcement: Rev. Joseph King, Peter North, Mary E. Miller)
(Column 4)
Summary: On Feb. 5th, George Selrich, son of Phillip Selrich, died. George was 10 months old.
(Names in announcement: Phillip Selrich, George Selrich)

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