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Valley of the Shadow

Valley Spirit: July 28, 1869

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Packer and Pershing
(Column 01)
Summary: Praises the Democratic nominees for Governor and Supreme Court Justice. Repeatedly stresses their honesty and qualifications for their respective offices, and contrasts that with the corruption of the Radicals. Also stresses the gubernatorial nominee's charity work and founding of a university in the state.
Full Text of Article:

Our Democratic exchanges come to us filled with rejoicings over the work of the State Convention. The nominations are satisfactory to everybody but the Radicals. Honest people are hailing an honest ticket with delight. The mismanagement and corruption which have characterized our State Administrations for the last nine years have so disgusted the better portion of the Radical party that they were ready to cut loose from Geary and Williams the very moment a worthy ticket was put in the field by the Democrats. Such men have no hesitation in saying that their wishes have been gratified. The nominees of the Democratic Convention are not only men of known ability but of recognized integrity. The Jeffersonian test, is he honest, is he capable? was applied by the Convention, and the result is the nomination of men whose honesty and capacity are universally admitted.

The Radical journals are at a loss for points of attack. The characters of our candidates are so unexceptionable that they can find nothing to say condemnatory of them. Failing to get hold of anything better, they are attempting to prejudice the masses against our candidate for Governor by writing about his immense wealth. They say the Democracy have nominated twenty million dollars for Governor. They forget to tell the people how his wealth was acquired. They omit to state that it is the fruit of honest industry. Asa Packer was a poor boy. He received no pecuniary assistance from his parents. He has been emphatically the architect of his own fortune. He resolved in early life to look out for himself and, leaving his New England home, he came to the State of Pennsylvania, which he recognized as the best theatre for the operations of his active mind. Here he toiled day after day at an humble occupation. By saving his earnings, he acquired sufficient capital to start in business for himself and soon developed that wonderful sagacity and shrewd business tact, combined with an inflexible honesty of purpose, which caused every enterprise in which he engaged to yield him a handsome profit. He owes his wealth, therefore, to his own indefatigable exertions.

The Radical papers omit to give Asa Packer credit for the manner in which he uses his money. He is not a miser who hoards up his money and finds his highest delight in counting it. He is not a man in whose breast avarice and covetousness have found a lodging place. On the contrary, his is a heart overflowing with consideration for his fellow man. His ear is always open to hear meritorious claims for aid and his hand always ready to supply the wants of the needy. The poor are never turned away from his door. But he is not satisfied with simply contributing to those who call upon him. With munificent liberality he founded a University at Bethlehem which is not only an honor to himself, but an honor to the State. There is no narrow mindedness about him. Knowing well the soreness of the struggles through which he passed, and that his labors were increased on account of the limited education which he had received in boyhood, he took this step so as to give to other young men the aid of a thorough education with which to begin their careers. A gentleman who dispenses his money in this way, can well endure the sneers and scoffs of politicians who call him a twenty million dollar candidate. The State needs more such men.

It is no wonder, then, that the press is trumpeting the qualifications and meritorious deeds of our candidate. His is a reputation compared to which that of mintstick Geary sinks into utter insignificance.

The Convention was equally fortunate in its selection of a candidate for the Supreme Bench. Cyrus L. Pershing is one of the brightest ornaments of the Pennsylvania Bar. He is a gentleman of the most solid legal attainments. His life, too, has been one of unceasing activity. He has given to his profession the labors of his early years and now, when in the very prime of life, and in the full vigor of his intellectual powers, he is to be called to a position in which he will be of eminent service in the citizens of Pennsylvania by the exercise of that sound judgment and legal acumen which these labors have developed, and the practical use of that legal knowledge with which his mind is stored so abundantly. The purity of his private life is acknowledged by all who know him. Through five years in the lower House of the Pennsylvania Legislature he passed, and his reputation has not the slightest tarnish upon it. The man who could remain at Harrisburg for that length of time and go away without so much as the smell of corruption upon his garments, is unquestionably worthy of the confidence and respect and support of the people. In these days, when Legislative halls are reeking with corruption, when the most iniquitous legislation is carried by the use of bribery and when many good men have fallen under the ban on account of the bad company they have kept, we point with pride to our candidate who bore himself throughout five years of Legislative experience without reproach from any quarter. We whipped Judge Williams once with the accomplished Sharswood. WE will best him the second time with the able and honest Pershing.

Up with your banners, then, Democrats. Hang them on the outer wall. Carry Packer and Pershing to victory.

White Boys in Blue
(Column 03)
Summary: Tries to stir up support among soldiers for the Democratic party. Gives several examples of Republicans giving civilians government jobs instead of crippled veterans. Also shows how a few prominent generals are supporting Democratic nominees.
Full Text of Article:

Our neighbors of the Repository, both of them we believe claiming to have seen service in their country's behalf, are already after the White Boys in Blue. Doubtless they are impelled to this early remembrance of them in their columns by a knowledge of the power wielded against their party by this organization in former campaigns.--We think we can account for their present uneasiness on the score of the prompt and cordial ratification of Judge Packer's nomination by the friends of Genls. Hancock and McCandless. Genl. McCandless, far from being dissatisfied with his failure to receive the nomination for Governor, will, in his own words, from a speech delivered on the evening following the Convention, "be found supporting both flanks of Judge Packer during the campaign." We predict for the gallant General and his White Boys in Blue heavy accessions from the ranks of the enemy in the shape of deserters, who, now that they know the shallowness and hypocrisy of radical love for our soldiers, will no longer be made the dupe of such political gamblers.

Come now, gentlemen, be frank for once. Why is it that so many maimed and crippled soldiers have been refused positions under the Grant administration and the places they sought given to stay-at-home patriots, rebels and negroes? Take for instance the case of Genl. Stephen McGroarty, of Cincinnati, who lost an arm and was otherwise badly crippled in that desperate struggle in which he and his brigade fought to resist the fierce onslaught of the rebel Genl. Longstreet's corps, as it came fresh from the valley of Virginia to turn the tide of victory against our army on that last day at Chickamauga. Under Johnson General McGroarty held a position in Cincinnati by which in his enfeebled condition he managed to support his family, but when the patronage of the Government passed into Genl. Grant's hands, this maimed veteran was ruthlessly thrust out of office and his place given to a civilian. The same hand which wrote the order for his removal signed a commission as Collector of the Port of New Orleans with a salary of $30,000, to that rebel General in resisting whose attempts to overthrow his government Stephen McGroarty was almost literally shot to pieces. But we need not go so far from home in quest of illustrations of this kind. In our own county we have seen two soldiers, both cripples, thrust aside to make way for civilians. Col. Richie was not made Assessor because the Radical Congressman of this district set a higher value on the patriotism of a man who held this same lucrative office while he (Ritchie) was absent periling his life on the field of battle. And Sergt. Lesher was refused a clerkship in the Post Office at this place, because it was thought that he would vote the ticket whether appointed or not, and for the additional reason that it was necessary to take care of other gentlemen who were aspirants for the Postmastership and who were presumed to have the power "to raise the devil" about Cessna's ears if they were not provided for.

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(Column 01)
Summary: Rev. S. A. Gotwald will preach his introductory sermon as pastor of the Lutheran Church.
(Names in announcement: Rev. S. A. Gotwald)
Camp Meeting
(Column 01)
Summary: The African American community of Franklin County will hold a camp meeting beginning on August 7th.
The Opera Troupe
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Summary: A troop of strolling players will perform at Repository Hall. The performances are not "of the highest order," and the paper suggests no ladies should attend. The performers will introduce "exhibitions of the Black Crook order into the rural districts."
(Column 02)
Summary: The showmen Hamilton and Rawdon have been exhibiting their "troupe of 'bloody Injins'" in Mercersburg, Greencastle, Waynesboro, Funkstown and Fayetteville. They are playing to crowded houses. The paper gives it a bad review, except for the scalping.
The English Burlesque Troupe
(Column 02)
Summary: The Nellie Maskell Great European Combination Troupe will perform in Repository Hall. The performers have been entertaining the public and successfully making them laugh.
Radical Convention
(Column 02)
Summary: The Radical County Convention will meet in Chambersburg to nominate candidates for county office.
(Names in announcement: McDowell, Mahon, Shade, Strickler, Capt. Walker, J. N. Flinder, Reuben Lewis, James C. Patton, Samuel Knisely, William Bender)
The Mercersburg Railroad
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Summary: The paper defends itself from charges that it only promotes the interests of Chambersburg. It asserts that it has supported plans for the Mercersburg Railroad.
The Franklin County Horticultural Society
(Column 03)
Summary: The Franklin County Horticultural Society met. A number of new members were inducted, and resolutions of thanks were tendered to those who contributed to their recent Strawberry Festival. The Treasurer reported that the receipts of the society totalled $122.78 and the expenses $67.90. A number of flowers, fruits, and vegetables were exhibited.
(Names in announcement: Dr. J. L. Suesserott, J. L. Dechert, A. J. White, W. S. Stenger, F. S. Gillespie, Theodore McGowan, William Heyser, Dr. George F. Platt, H. S. Gilbert, James B. Gillen, J. P. Culbertson, Keefer, Col. J. G. Elder, Dr. William H. Boyle, B. L. Ryder, T. B. Jenkins, H. M. Engle)
The Horticultural Society
(Column 03)
Summary: The Horticultural Society met again on July 20th at the Ryder Nursery Association. They discussed publishing a journal, and exhibited a number of fruits, vegetables, and flowers.
(Names in announcement: Dr. W. H. Boyle, Frank Henderson, Prof. J. H. Shumaker, Dr. E. Culbertson, R. P. Haslett, Ryder, Charles F. Miller, Josiah Schofield, T. B. Jenkins, Nixon)
(Column 05)
Summary: David Butler, formerly of Maryland, died in Montgomery Township on July 18th. He was 73 years old.
(Names in announcement: David Butler)

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