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Valley of the Shadow

Valley Spirit: April 21, 1869

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(Column 01)
Summary: Account of a killing in Franklin County.
(Names in announcement: Frank Spitel, John Harmony, George Harmony, Etter, Christian Spital, Mrs. Hurst, McClure, John Embich, Jacob C. Strealy, J. Frank Snider, Dr. McLanahan, Dr. Montgomery, Dr. Boyle)
Full Text of Article:

Frank Spital, a young unmarried man residing in this borough, was shot and killed on Monday afternoon last by John Harmony, a young married man, also a resident of this borough. John Harmony is the son of George Harmony, who resides at the corner of Queen and Broad streets. He (John) is a tinner and was in the employ of Mr. Etter, on Main Street. Frank Spital is the son of Christian Spital, dec'd, and lived with his mother on East Market street. He was a stone mason and had been at work on the foundation walls of the Central Presbyterian Church. While at work on Friday last he injured one of his fingers and was obliged to quit work for a few days. This trifling injury appears to have cost him his life!

Spital and Harmony went out hunting on Monday afternoon. They took with them one gun and a flask of whisky. They were seen by several persons in the meadow of Mrs. Hurst, back of the McClure place, about a mile north of town. Several shots were heard in the meadow, and it is supposed that they were shooting at birds. What incurred to induce one of them to turn his gun against the other is not known. John Embich, who lives at the Falling Mill just above the scene of the tragedy, passing along the road, was hailed by Harmony, who informed him that he had killed a man. Not liking to go alone with him, Mr. Embich went on a short distance to where Jacob C. Strealy and J. Frank Snider were collecting gravel, and told them what Harmony had said. They went down into the meadow and there found the dead body of Spital. Near it lay the gun, and in a clump of bushes close at hand was the flask of whisky. Continuing down the creek, they found Harmony on the foot-log opposite one of McClure's cottages. He said he had killed him. Being asked why he had killed him, he answered that he did not know. Information was given to officer Houser, who arrested him and lodged him in jail.

The body of Spital was brought in about dusk and conveyed to the residence of his mother. Here an inquest was held by H. B. Davison, Esq., a Justice of the Peace in this borough, at which the foregoing facts were elicited.

A post mortem examination of the body was made by Drs. McLanahan, Montgomery and Boyle. It was found that a large charge of shot had entered the left breast, forward of the shoulder and above the heart, passing through the upper portion of the left lung and lodging in the muscles of the back. The muzzle of the gun must have been close to the body when the discharge took place, as some of the wadding was found in the wound.

Officers Elected
(Column 02)
Summary: List of officers elected to the Enterprise Building Association of Waynesboro.
(Names in announcement: William Noetling, E. Elden, A. D. Morganthall, J. W. Miller, W. A. Tritle, J. B. Resser, B. F. Funk, Elam Frantz, Jacob Adams, Hiram Henneberger)
Officers Elected
(Column 02)
Summary: List of officers elected to the Odd Fellows of Orrstown.
(Names in announcement: Samuel C. Golden, Henry J. Stewart, Fred K. Mohler, John W. Hamsher, Daniel Keefer)
Court Proceedings
(Column 02)
Summary: Continues its coverage of the local Court session, reporting cases and verdicts. Of note is a case concerning a doctor who performed an abortion.
(Names in announcement: George E. Stewart, Dr. John J. Oellig, Mary Jane Welsh, Samuel Seylar, James W. Robinson, John Laly, David Hare, Michael Fallen)
Full Text of Article:

Our Court continued in session all of last week, trying criminal causes. The case on trial as we went to press last week, was that of the Commonwealth vs. George E. Stewart, charged with selling liquor to minors. Verdict, not guilty. Defendant to pay one-half the costs and prosecutors the other half.

The next case was the Commonwealth vs. Dr. John H. Oellig, charge of procuring an abortion on the body of Mary Jane Welsh. This case occupied three days, and was listened to with intense interest throughout. It was given to the jury on Friday afternoon at four o'clock. The jury failed to agree and by consent of the counsel, was discharged on Saturday morning about eleven o'clock.

The next case called was that of the Commonwealth vs. Samuel Seylar, James W. Robinson, John Laly and David Hare, charged with the buglary and larceny of Michael Fallen's goods on the 19th of December last, from his store in Mercersburg.

The counsel for James W. Robinson presented an affidavit stating that injustice would be done to him by a joint trial and praying for a severance. The Court granted a severance whereupon the District Attorney elected to try Samuel Seylar first. His trial was accordingly begun and was still in progress when the Court adjourned on Saturday evening. By consent of counsel, the jurors were allowed to separate. The Court convened again on Monday morning at ten o'clock when this trial was resumed. On Tuesday at noon this case was given to the jury and the trial of Dr. James W. Robinson, charged with the same offence, was immediately begun.

Turnpike Road
(Column 02)
Summary: Article endorsing the construction of a turnpike road from Waynesboro to Fayetteville.
[No Title]
(Column 03)
Summary: The Rev. E. D. Dutt, pastor of the Orrstown Lutheran Church, preached his farewell sermon before accepting a post in Cumberland County.
(Names in announcement: Rev. E. D. Dutt)
Installation of Officers
(Column 03)
Summary: List of officers installed at Chambersburg Lodge, No. 175, International Order of Odd Fellows.
(Names in announcement: J. N. Martin, George W. Noftaker, John Earheart, J. L. P. Detrich, F. H. Skinner, P. W. Jacobs, T. M. Mahon, Jacob Sheets, D. S. Forbes, A. L. Davison, P. C. Loutenalager, George Beitch, Leonard Duncebarger, John Seibert, George Heart, William Robinson)
Report of the Border Claims Commissioners
(Column 03)
Summary: Prints the report of the Border Claims Commission in full. Lists the damages and amounts claimed for each county and the methods used to arrive at the totals.
(Names in announcement: J. F. Hartranft, D. W. Woods, A. S. Ely, W. S. Woods)
Full Text of Article:

The following is the report of the Border Claims Commissioners to the Auditor General:

To Hon. J. F. Hartranft, Auditor General of the Commonwealth of Penna.:

The undersigned commissioners appointed by the Governor under the act of Assembly, approved the 9th day of April, 1868, to assess the damages sustained by the citizens of the counties of Adams, Franklin, Fulton, Bedford, Perry, York, and Cumberland, in the late war, by the Union and rebel troops, respectfully submit:

That we organized on the 2d day of June, and appointed M. W. M'Alarney our clerk (who proved to be very efficient), and having been sworn to perform our duties with impartiality and fidelity, and having given the notice required by the act of the times and places of our meetings, we visited all the counties therein named, and held sessions at Newport, in the county of Perry, at Bedford, in Bedford county, at M'Connallsburg, Fulton county, at Chambersburg, Waynesboro', Greencastle and Mercersburg, in the county of Franklin, at Carlisle and Shippensburg, in Cumberland county, at Gettysburg, in Adams county, and at York, Hanover and Dillsburg, in York county. The total number of claims presented to the commissioners was four thousand three hundred and five, besides some few presented by corporations, which we were forbidden to entertain by the act of Assembly. The time occupied and labor required by the commission and their clerk in the assessment of damages, was much greater and more onerous than they had any idea of when they commenced. Besides the meetings in the different counties named, we held a number of sessions in Harrisburg, to examine and adjust the claims presented to us. We have set forth in the book in which the report is made, and which is made part of it, a detailed statement of the claims presented by the citizens in their respective counties, the losses sustained through the Union and rebel armies, and whether such losses were in real or personal estate, and the amount by cash and to each. We also present each claim separately, and the proof furnished by the respective claimants. By these it will appear the total amount of losses as claimed to have been sustained by the citizens in said counties amounts to the sum of one million eight hundred and twenty-one thousand and thirty-one dollars and four cents, and the amount allowed is one million six hundred and ninety-three thousand three hundred and fifty-one dollars and fifty-two cents.

These losses are divided among the counties as follows:

Perry county.--Damages by Union troops to real estate, $1,516.00, and to personal property, $1,218.00, and by rebel troops to personal property, $70.00. Total amount to real and personal in Perry county, $2,698.00, of which $2,640.40 is allowed.

Bedford county.--Damages by Union troops to real property, $198.00; to personal, $5,025.19. Damages by rebels to real property, $500.00; to personal $2,031.25. Total amount claimed, $7,186.23; allowed, $7,126.23.

Fulton county.--Damages by Union troops to real estate, $420.00; to personal property, $1,898.00. Damages by rebels to real property, $1,389.25; to personal $50,714.07. Total amount claimed $54,421.32; allowed, $48,900.57.

Cumberland county.--Damages by the Union troops in real property, $32,197.23; to personal $28,873.73. Damages by rebels to real property, $10,861.90; to personal property, $176,855.55. Total amount claimed, $238,400.02; allowed, $216,724.46.

Adams county.--Damages by Union troops to real property, $44,723.20; to personal, $35,982.41. Damages by rebels to real, $117,670.87; to personal, $352,373.00. Total amount claimed, $550,383.97; allowed, $507,797.37.

York county.--Damages by Union troops to real property, $1,330.30; to personal, $5,909.12. Damages by rebels to real, $7,832.48; to personal, $112,630.57. Total amount claimed, $127,668.55; allowed, $124,728.59.

Franklin county.--Damages by Union troops to real property, $3,122.22; to personal, $19,631.28. Damages by rebels to real $22,789.94; to personal, $793,854.79. Total amount claimed, $838,162.18; allowed $788,733.99.

In some of these claims presented for damages to real estate, we find damages claimed for the destruction of fences and the growing crops, and to addition damages claimed for the passing of the armies over the fields in which the crops were growing. This we have not allowed, as it appears to us to a measure at least, duplicating the damage. We also found in many instances in the same locality different values set upon the staple articles by the different claimants, and we have endeavored to make them a uniform price in the same locality, and as nearly as we could ascertain the regular market prices. Some of the damages claimed for use of barns, &c., for hospitals, were manifestly excessive, and we have in such cases reduced the amount. All of which is carefully submitted.
A. S. ELY,

(Column 05)
Summary: John S. Ryder and Miss Rebecca Hershner, both of Franklin, were married in St. Thomas on April 13th by the Rev. S. A. Mowers.
(Names in announcement: John S. Ryder, Rebecca Hershner, Rev. S. A. Mowers)
(Column 05)
Summary: Jeremiah Barr and Miss Elizabeth Grow were married on April 6th by the Rev. A. E. Folker.
(Names in announcement: Jeremiah Barr, Elizabeth Grow, Rev. A. E. Folker)
(Column 05)
Summary: Elijah B. Primm of Schuylkill County and Miss Emma J. West of Franklin were married on April 20th at the Washington House by the Rev. S. Barnes.
(Names in announcement: Elijah B. Primm, Emma J. West, Rev. S. Barnes)
(Column 05)
Summary: Sarah Jane Lebernight, daughter of Daniel Lebernight, died on April 6th. She was 1 year old.
(Names in announcement: Sarah Jane Lebernight, Daniel Lebernight)
(Column 05)
Summary: David Franklin Brake, son of George Brake, died on April 16th. He was 10 months old.
(Names in announcement: David Franklin Brake, George Brake)

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