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Valley of the Shadow

Valley Spirit: February 5, 1868

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Hard Times for the Poor
(Column 01)
Summary: Describes the sorry state of working-class white northerners and blames Radical racial policies for the former's misery. Contrasts the reduction in naval spending with the continued existence of the Freedmen's Bureau to show how Radicals favor blacks over whites.
Full Text of Article:

Accounts of suffering among the working classes in the large cities and manufacturing towns all over the country continue to reach us. Nothing like the present prostration in business has been experienced for thirty years. Manufactories are being stopped every day, throwing their workmen out of employment. Other establishments are running on "short term," thus reducing the weekly income of the workmen. Thousands of able-bodied and industrious mechanics in New York city are offering to work until spring for their board alone! In Lancaster, Harrisburg, Reading, and places of like size, as many as eight or ten able-bodied men, guilty of no offense, have been known to apply to the Mayor, in a single day, for commitment to prison, in order that they might have something to eat and a place to sleep. This shows the desperate straits to which they are reduced. Radical legislation has done it all, and the worst has probably not yet come. The Radical Congress is cutting down the appropriations for those branches of the public service in which large numbers of White mechanics and laborers are employed, but it refuses to reduce the appropriation for the benefit of the Negro.

Some time ago the Secretary of the Navy furnished the Ways and Means Committee an estimate of the amount required for the naval service. The sum he asked for was about twenty-five million dollars. The Committee cut it down to nineteen millions, and Gen. Grant's trainer for the Presidency (Washburne, of Illinois) boasted in the House about this reduction, and claimed the credit of it for the Radicals. In consequence of this reduction, the Secretary of the Navy has been compelled to discharge a large number of workmen out of every Navy Yard in the country. At Washington, Baltimore, Philadelphia, New York, Boston, and other places where Navy Yards are located, thousands of industrious men have thus been thrown out of work in the middle of winter. The latest discharge of this kind took place last week at New York, where five hundred men, at work on the steamer Colorado, were turned out in obedience to orders from Washington.

Now what credit are Mr. Washburne and his Radical associates in Congress entitled to for all this? If they honestly exerted themselves to bring about economy in all departments of the public service, they would be entitled to credit. But whilst they have made a reduction of six million dollars in the Naval appropriations and thereby thrown thousands of white men out of work, they propose to continue the "Freedmen's Bureau," whose cost to the treasury, directly and indirectly, is about twenty million dollars a year. The law creating this Bureau for the benefit of the Negroes provided for its discontinuance on the first day of July, 1868. But the Radicals will not permit it to die out at that time. A bill to continue it has been prepared and will be passed, and more than three times the amount withheld from the industrious white mechanics and laborers in our Navy Yards by this Radical Congress, will be thrown away upon the the lazy Negroes who bask in the sunshine of the "Freedmen's Bureau."

The Radicals in Congress seem to think that the Negroes alone, all the people in this great country, are worthy of their ears. Commerce may be paralyzed, manufactures may languish, the fires of industry may die out, idle mechanics and laboring men may swarm everywhere, women and children may shiver in cold and cheerless apartments, with the ravenous wolf of hunger gnawing at their vitals, and Congress will do nothing to revive trade and relieve the sufferers. But the Negroes, inhabiting a climate so genial that all the necessaries of life may be obtained with very little labor--where early garden vegetables are growing now, or will be in a few weeks, where winter is unknown and coal fires and expensive woolen clothing are never needed--they are the objects of the special care of Congress! White men, how long shall this continue?

Wendell Phillips Charges Gen. Grant With Drunkenness
(Column 02)
Summary: The editorial calls for an investigation of Grant's drinking habits, noting the irony that a Radical has testified that he has been drunk on the job. The paper suggests Congress pay more attention to Grant's misdeeds, and less to Johnson's.
Senator Mortin's Speech
(Column 02)
Summary: The paper gloats over a speech by Senator Morton of Indiana admitting that Congress has had no "certain, fixed policy" on reconstruction since the end of the war. "It is a candid admission of what the Democracy have all along been charging."
The Negro Still Ahead
(Column 02)
Summary: The paper denounces Radical refusal to strike out a statute imposing fines on train conductors who refuse to seat blacks. Claims voters and the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania support a measure banning blacks from sitting in cars with white women but Radicals struck that down too.
Full Text of Article:

One year ago the Radical Legislature of Pennsylvania passed an act imposing a penalty upon any car conductor who should refuse to allow a Negro to enter any car on his train. The Radical Governor signed this bill. While it was pending in the House, Mr. Boyle, of Fayette, a Democratic member, made an effort to save ladies who might be traveling from contact with Negroes, by offering an amendment providing that conductors might exclude Negroes from cars set apart for the use of ladies, from which gentlemen unaccompanied by ladies always were and still are excluded. This amendment was voted down by the Radical majority, and cars which were shut against respectable gentlemen with white skins were thrown open to men with black skins without regard to their respectability. The People pronounced their verdict against this outrage at the polls in October, and very soon afterwards the Supreme Court pronounced against it an opinion written by one of the Republican Judges. After the Legislature met last month, Democrats in both branches introduced bills to wipe this abominable Negro Equality act off the statute book of the State; but the repealing bill offered in the House was defeated last week, the Radicals going against it in solid column. Thus the Radicals, in their love for the Negro, not only defy public sentiment, but disregard the decision of the Supreme Court.

Negro Criminals
(Column 03)
Summary: Uses crime statistics for January as a means to attack Radical policies of racial equality in the North and the South.
Full Text of Article:

At the January term of our Court of Quarter Sessions, forty-nine persons were charged with committing criminal offences within the County. Of this number twenty were negroes. Usually the number of colored offenders exceeds that of the whites. In this Borough we estimate the white population at six thousand and the black at six hundred. And yet for every white person, residing here, indicted for any crime, we have at least three blacks.

We believe that the white population of the county is thirty times greater than the colored population, and yet out of forty-nine criminals at one term of Court, we have twenty blacks. What a striking commentary upon the morality of this class of people which the Radicals are seeking to place upon an equality with the whites! What a Paradise would that be over which such people would have absolute control! Giving loose rein to their passions, regarding no law, whether human or divine, they would soon make the territory over which they held control a perfect Hell. And yet into such hands have ten States of this Union been delivered, through the fanaticism and reckless partisan measure of the Radical party.

Surveyor General
(Column 03)
Summary: The paper announces that John M. Cooper has been named Surveyor General, a move applauded by the state's Democratic press.
(Names in announcement: John M. Cooper)
The Presidency and Vice Presidency
(Column 03)
Summary: The article touts Jeremiah S. Black and Thomas Swann as potential presidential running mates.
Origin of Article: Annapolis Republican
Letter to Thaddeus Stevens
(Column 04)
Summary: A letter from Robert Criswell, who says he's an old acquaintance of Thaddeus Stevens. Criswell expresses sorrow at the policies Stevens and his Radical colleagues chose to pursue, especially racial ones. Criswell says he is a Republican but is now disillusioned by Radicals and wants to rally behind Johnson and nonpartisan measures.
(Names in announcement: Robert Criswell)
Full Text of Article:

Honey Locust Farm, L. I., near
Brooklyn Jan. 30, 1868

Hon. Thaddeus Stevens:

Dear Sir--I suppose you will not recollect me; therefore, to aid your memory I will state some circumstances that occurred between us about a third of a century ago. At that time you will remember a town called the Two Taverns, (which contained also a Blacksmith shop,) about five miles from Gettysburg, on the Baltimore turnpike; and of your owning one of the taverns, and of exchanging it with Robert Criswell, my father, of Franklin county, for a farm in Path Valley, and of my coming (then a mere boy) to your office in Gettysburg, to effect an exchange of title deeds of the properties. Some years afterwards I called on you in Lancaster; now you will recollect me; therefore you will excuse me for addressing a few lines to you on the great and exciting topics of the day--particularly as you are, and have been for some time, one of the most active participants in them in Congress.

We are on the eve of a great crisis; the public mind is uneasy all over the country at your doings in Washington from day to day. But this new reconstruction bill that your House has passed and the Senate will likely pass, for the ten rebel States, caps the climax. Why not make Gen. Grant Dictator of the remaining States also, and thus get rid of the President at once, as this is what you and your Radical colleagues have been trying to do for some time. We might as well have no President as to have one stripped of all his constitutional powers.

You are accused of acknowledging that you are legislating "outside of the Constitution," and of saying that the rule of the Constitution had gone by, and the will of the party in power is the supreme law of the land. Is this true? I hope not for your sake. I have heretofore always endeavored to uphold you, when you and your measures were spoken against. Some have said the reason you were so hard on the rebels was because you were vindictive and revengeful on account of their burning your Caledonia Iron Works during Lee's invasion of Pennsylvania, thereby causing you to lose $50,000. I told them no; that you did not care for the loss of your works, that your only regret was that about two hundred laborers were thrown out of employment on account of it, until you could get them rebuilt again; that your constituents would have made up your loss, but you would not allow them to do so; that you did not care much for money or property; that you once gave a good farm to Lydia Jane Pierson, a celebrated poetess, for writing a fine poem on the Gettysburg College and in favor of education; that you have always been an abolitionist; but it seems that this fondness for the colored race has so grown on you of late, that you may be said to be afflicted with that new disease, called "Nigger on the brain," as you wish to give them rights and favors denied to white men. White emigrants are required to live a certain length of time in the country before voting; but you want to give the ignorant blacks the right of suffrage immediately; and you want to make the South such a Paradise for them, (in disregard of the interests of the whites) that it will attract some of their race to emigrate from Africa and the Southern Islands. In that event, I suppose you would want to have an agent of the Freedmen's Bureau at the pier to hand each of these Hottentots a ballot as they landed from the vessel. I am in favor of giving the ballot to the Freedmen after they are somewhat educated and know what it is and means. Some of them recently put into the box bits of hand-bills for votes. Nine-tenths of them are utterly unfitted to exercise this franchise, (as I have travelled through eight of the Southern States, I ought to know something about them) and yet, Mr. Stevens, you will persist in giving them the right of suffrage, and of putting them in the jury box, and in office, and into the society of the whites, contrary to their wishes. You know "what is sauce for the goose is sauce for the masculine bird also." Why don't you allow them to vote, and sit on juries, and hold office in your own State? (my native State?) Echo answers, why the Pennsylvanians would not allow it, and well you know it. Although the colored race belong to the same class that we do, yet they are a distinct species, and let them remain so, as nature intended. The horse and ass belong to the same class of animals, but are distinct species, and can you by any manner of training make the latter equal the former? I don't want to deny the negroes their just and natural rights, and I grant that some few of them have great intellects, but nature and nature's God never intended that they should intermarry and be equal with the whites; and I believe such marriages are sinful in the sight of high Heaven, and that those persons that aid and abet them commit sin. A member of the constitutional convention in Georgia, recently proposed that any persons that should solemnize such marriages in that State, should be sent to Africa; but the blacks there want white wives, and they voted the resolution down, and spoke of sending the mover of it to Africa.--There can be nothing found in Scripture justifying such marriages; but I fear some of your members are not very well acquainted with the Good Book, or they would make more just, equitable laws.--One verse reads thus: "Whatsoever ye would that men should do unto you, do ye even so unto them."

One of your members some time ago thought he was quoting from the Bible instead of Dr. Watts. He said the Scriptures say:
"While the lamp holds out to burn, The vilest sinner may return."
This is very good news for all of us, but especially for the Radicals at this time; let them return from the errors of their ways, in persecuting their poor white brethren of the South to the bitter end.

No generous, high-minded man will kick another when he is down, but he will take him by the hand and help him to stand up again. Have they not been punished enough by losing three hundred thousand of their men in the war, and $9,000,000,000 in slave property, and all other kinds of losses; have they not laid down their arms; have they not given up their rebel war debts; and are they not helping you to pay your debt as fast as they can? for it must be confessed they are very much impoverished. You would be acting the part of the good Samaritan if you would vote them $1,000,000 or $2,000,000 to keep the most destitute of them and the freedmen from starving this winter. You would in this way show that you had the good of the latter at heart, and refute your opponents who say all that you care for the negro is to get the vote at the next Presidential election; and it would seem they were justified in making this remark, for you are moving Heaven and earth (as the saying is) to do so.

You think nothing of violating the Constitution; and you want to absorb all the powers of government, legislative, judicial and executive in yourself; your motto seems to be "rule or ruin." "Whom the gods wish to destroy they first make mad." However your time is short, as from one-fourth to one-half of your members will be elected to stay at home from the Forty-first Congress.

But if you should succeed in securing the negro vote you cannot elect a Radical President; for you will lose five white votes for every negro one you gain. Even General Grant, your most popular man, cannot be elected as a Radical. If he is wise(and the whole world acknowledges his wisdom and talents as a great military commander, &c.) he will "let well enough alone;" he will not risk "the substance in grasping for the shadow." He has had a hard time in reaching the top round of that high and difficult ladder to climb, the ladder of fame; it took him four long years, round by round, while he braved summer's heat and winter's cold, and the fire of the enemy on many a hard-fought battle field; yet in one short hour, a few days ago, he made a misstep and fell ten rounds: let him be careful and not make another, and fall to the bottom. The General has lowered himself (except with the Radicals) by vacating the War Department in the manner he did, in favor of Stanton, instead of honorably resigning his Porfolio into the hands of the President from whom he received it.

The General should remember that the great hero of not one war only but of two, Gen. Scott, could not be elected President.

Because a man made a good General, is not saying he would make a good President, as a man may be a very good farmer, and yet make a very poor merchant, or watchmaker. Some people are afraid that if Grant could be elected he would be only a tool in the hands of the Radicals. Our next President should be a tried statesman of experience, of great firmness and iron will; such a man occupies the White House at present, and from the signs of the times he will not be required to move out of it for four years after this one. As he has been the best abused and most persecuted President that has ever occupied it, the people think he should enjoy it a while in peace. As they thought Lincoln should have it for four years longer, because his first four were spent in warring with the rebels, and that he would be the best man to restore the country; so a good part of President Johnson's time has been taken up warring with the Radicals; and they think he will be the best man to reunite all the States, and restore the Constitution. He is certainly displaying Jacksonian pluck and firmness, as he receives all the assaults of his enemies unmoved, like a great rock towering out of the ocean, with the waves and breakers foaming and dashing against it daily, but only to dash themselves to pieces. He stands unmoved. But let him possess his great soul in patience, for the time of his delivery draws nigh.

I am only one of thousands that will join Johnson or the constitutional party. I never voted a Democratic ticket in my life; was a Whig the same as you, Mr. Stevens, until the Republican party was organized in 1856; then I joined it, as it was a natural for us Whigs to slide into it as it is for ducks to swim.

There are some men such strong partisans, that if it was possible to place old Beelzebub himself on the ticket, they would vote for him in preference to a good man of the other party; they would say to their friends, "O don't be turn coats, don't scratch your ticket; stick to the party, stick to the party." I like to see men show some independence and leave their party when they see it going against the best interests of their country.

As our ever to be lamented friend, Mr. Lincoln, was in the habit of saying sometimes, "this puts me in mind of a little story," so I will conclude this long letter with a little story. Once upon a time two brothers owned a flock of sheep in partnership; but after some time the elder Johnny said to the younger Jimmy, "that he wanted to have the flock divided equally between them, and that if he would go into the house he would make such a division; and that he could take whichever flock he liked best." It so happened that Jimmy had a pet lamb called Billy, so Johnny picked out all the poor, and old, and lame, and blind, and scabby sheep, and placed them by themselves, and then put Jimmy's pet lamb with them, thinking that of course his love for his lamb would make him overlook the deficiencies of his comrades; he then called Jimmy to take his choice; but when he saw how the flock was divided, he came up to Billy and began to pet him, and said, "Billy, I am ashamed to find you in such company, I always did like you, Billy, and I like you still, but I'll be hanged if I like the company you are in. Good bye, Billy. Johnny, I take the other flock."

So good-bye, Mr. Stevens. I always have admired your great talents, but I think they are misdirected of late; besides you have got too many black sheep in your flock, and are too anxious to increase their number, to suit me any longer. I join the other flock. Adieu, Adieu.
Robert Criswell.

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Meeting of the Democratic County Committee
(Column 01)
Summary: The members of the Franklin County Democratic Committee are asked to meet to select delegates for the state convention.
(Names in announcement: B. Y. Hamsher, George W. Brewer, C. M. Duncan, D. H. Wunderlich, J. Newton Shillito, Samuel Breckenridge, Phares Dufield, Abraham Haffer, Dr. W. A. Hunter, William D. McKinstry, John Goetz, William Johnston, E. J. Small, Simon Ritner, John K. Keyser, William Stitzel, Martin Hammond, J. J. Miller, Jacob Bear, William H. Blair, J. S. Nimmon, John Lindsey, Daniel Stake, John H. Jarrett, John A. Sellers, John Gilbert)
Sermon to Young Men
(Column 01)
Summary: Rev. J. A. Crawford will address a special sermon to the young men of Chambersburg at the Presbyterian Church.
(Names in announcement: J. A. Crawford)
McMurray Lodge of Good Templars
(Column 01)
Summary: The McMurray Lodge of Good Templars elected officers at their recent meeting.
(Names in announcement: John M. Gilmore, N. Schlosser, Kate Kirby, Harper Black, Josiah Fletcher, J. A. S. Cramer, Lida Welsh, John Vance, G. R. Lesher, Frank Keagy, Levi Sheebs, Mary Forbes, Mary Eyster, Tillis Oaks)
The Ancient Citizens of Pompeii and Herculaneum
(Column 01)
Summary: Rev. R. S. Schneck delivered a lecture on the above topic to help raise money for the poor.
(Names in announcement: Rev. R. S. Schneck)
Court of Common Pleas--1st Week
(Column 02)
Summary: John Rosenberry and Elmina Rosenberry confessed judgement for costs in John E. Jones's case against them as Administrator of the Estate of the late William Everett. David Kuepper's executors won a settlement of $1050.37 in their case against Addie L. Kurtz, Administratrix of James Reed. A. H. Stump and G. H. Stump were awarded $125.20 in their case against Daniel S. Reisher and Samuel S. Reisher. The following were decided in the second week: Alexander W. Kyser won decision sustaining the will of George Kyner in a case against Mary Thompson. William Fleagle confessed judgement for $475 and costs in case brought by George Tucker. David Oaks and Samuel M. Linn, partners as Oaks and Linn, won case brought by Holker Hughes. Nicholas Best won case against Daniel Hammond.
(Names in announcement: John E. Jones, William Everett, John Rosenberry, Elmina Rosenberry, David Kuepper, Addie L. Kurtz, James Reed, A. H. Stump, G. H. Stump, Daniel S. Reisher, Samuel S. Reisher, Alexander W. Kyser, Mary Thompson, George Kyner, George Tucker, William Fleagle, Holker Hughes, David Oaks, Samuel M. Linn, Nicholas Best, Daniel Hammond)
(Column 04)
Summary: George Lotts Doernfeld and Miss Mary Magdalene Burkhart, both of Chambersburg, were married on January 16th by the Rev. G. Roth.
(Names in announcement: George Lotts Doernfeld, Mary Magdalene Burkhart, Rev. G. Roth)
(Column 04)
Summary: George Falter and Anna Hummell, both of Chambersburg, were married on January 17th by the Rev. Dr. Schneck.
(Names in announcement: George Falter, Anna Hummell, Rev. Schneck)
(Column 04)
Summary: Ephraim Hockersmith and Sarah A. Orndorf, both of Quincy, were married at the Washington Hotel on January 28th.
(Names in announcement: Ephraim Hockersmith, Sarah A. Orndorf)
(Column 04)
Summary: Harriet Shaemen, daughter of Jacob Whitmore, died near Greencastle on January 25th. She was 3 years old.
(Names in announcement: Harriet Shaemen Whitmore, Jacob Whitmore)
(Column 04)
Summary: Jacob Sites died near St. Thomas on January 29th. He was 74 years old.
(Names in announcement: Jacob Sites)
(Column 04)
Summary: Samuel Smith died near St. Thomas on January 29th. He was 68 years old.
(Names in announcement: Samuel Smith)
(Column 04)
Summary: John Wesley Jacobs, infant son of P. W. and Anna Jacobs, died on January 15th.
(Names in announcement: John Wesley Jacobs, P. W. Jacobs, Anna Jacobs)
(Column 04)
Summary: Susannah Shelgert, wife of Christian Shelgert, died in St. Thomas on January 27th.
(Names in announcement: Susannah Shelgert, Christian Shelgert)
(Column 04)
Summary: Mary Grace Cobie, daughter of Daniel and Mary E. Cobie, died on January 29th. She was 5 years old.
(Names in announcement: Mary Grace Cobie, Mary E. Cobie, Daniel Cobie)

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Description of Page: Advertisements and agricultural advice appear on this page.