Valley of the Shadow
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Proposal to Build a Railroad through the Valley of Virginia

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At the annual meeting of the stockholders of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Company, held in Baltimore last Wednesday a proposition was made to build a railroad from Harper's Ferry to connect with the Virginia and Tennessee railroad in the Upper Valley. President Garrett, in his report says:

"In the new era that has opened another subject of the greatest importance to the country, and especially to the people of Virginia and Maryland, has been presented.-Many of the most distinguished citizens of Virginia have expressed their anxiety for the early construction of a line of railway leading from Harper's ferry through Winchester and Strasburg, to connect with the great Virginia and Tennessee road, in the southwestern part of the State, and thus open a direct and effective line of communication from Baltimore to new Orleans, presenting to the States of Virginia, Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana an admirable, economic and direct line to the national capital an the great seat of commerce at the head of the Chesapeake. The Valley of Virginia-fertile, rich in mineral resources with fine water power, with a most beautiful climate-possesses a region of wonderful attractiveness and characteristics for great populations and extensive development. The entire region through Virginia, Tennessee and the connecting States presents the greatest advantages for emigration, and these advantages are sure to give absolute assurances of prosperity and wealth.

"During the existence of slavery in Virginia, a jealousy existed of any line leading to the free States, by which slave property became less safe. That obstacle having been removed, all jealousies appear also to have ceased, and I have been called upon by many of the most eminent and sagacious citizens of that great State, who urge that the attention of the people of Baltimore and the managers of the Baltimore and Ohio road should be directed to this subject. Their region has been desolated, their capital has been almost destroyed, and now they are most anxious that the enterprise and capital of this community shall be drawn to the road in accomplishing objects which will [REST OF PARAGRAPH UNCLEAR]

"A natural route, full of local and general advantages, is thus presented. It is true that whilst a portion of traffic which now comes up the Ohio river, and is received by Western railways from the Southwest-thus passing over the whole three hundred and seventy-nine miles of the Baltimore an Ohio road, would, through a valley line, pass over but eighty miles of the main stem; yet, in view of the great objects to be achieved for those interest and scoring a direct communication to Washington, and adding vastly to the commercial strength and importance of Baltimore, I do not hesitate to commend to the most earnest and favorable consideration of this community and to this board this interesting subject.

"The Baltimore and Ohio road has built up the region of Virginia through which it passes. It has aided largely in the construction and of the Parkersburg road, which has cost more than seven millions of dollars; and whilst it has enormously increased business and prosperity upon that line and made millionaries [CORRECT millionaires] of the owners of oil lands, and largely advanced the values of all properties in that region, that road has thus far failed directly in paying any interest upon the investment: yet in the future it is believed that remuneration can be secured, whilst the general commerce of Baltimore has been benefited and that region so specially improved. Like difficulties may embarrass the enterprise proposed, but its results in the future will justify every effort in its behalf."

Of the ability of the Company to construct the road, our readers, who, we fear, have never paid much attention to this mammoth corporation, will be able in judge from the following statistics. President Garrett says:

"The Baltimore and Ohio Company has increased its equipment to about three hundred locomotives and four thousand cars. Its capacity for business is now far beyond the ability of lines working in conjunction with it to dispose of the vast quantities of freight it brings to our city. At this time more than seventy-five trains daily of passengers and freight pass over the main stem of the Baltimore and Ohio road upon the Baltimore division. The power of the Company, by its large additions of the double track, and increase of facilities and equipment with its additional branches will be constantly enlarged. The direct outlets for this vast outlets for this vast [UNCLEAR] of traffic must follow."

Think of that, reader. Three hundred locomotives, four thousand cars, seventy-five daily trains! And all this besides the business done on that branch of the same road which extends from Washington to Baltimore.

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On our first page will be found an extra from the report of Mr. Garrett, President of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Co., which favors the construction of a railroad, by that company, through the Valley of Virginian, from Harper's Ferry to the Virginia and Tennessee Railroad. A somewhat similar proposition was made many years since, but was rejected, and we have looked forward to the revival of the proposition for some time. There is no richer region of the country in the United States than the Shenandoah Valley, and none which would more amply repay the expense of building a road through it. It possesses a climate unequaled on this continent, a soil rich and productive, and abounds in mineral resources, but being deprived of an easy access to market, the greater portion being many miles by wagon transportation from railway communication, it is, as yet, in a comparatively undeveloped condition. We believe it to be to the interest of Virginia, to intersect the entire State with a net-work of railways, and thus bring every portion into direct communication with the markets of the world. States of far less natural resources than the "Old Dominion," have passed her in the race of progress, by the facilities of trade and travel they have created, and now is the time for Virginia to profit by their experience. Systems of rapid intercommunication will greatly increase the value of her lands, and induce a rapid and healthy emigration. Particularly will this be the case in the Valley. With a railroad running through the entire length of the Valley, it would be but a few years before it would not only be the most populous, but most productive region in the Union.

There seems to be a fear in the minds of some, that Richmond will suffer by the building of such road. This is poor logic indeed. Must the Valley lay dormant, because, in advancing her interest, the interest of Richmond, or some other locality, may suffer? Did Richmond consult the interest of any other locality when her own interest was concerned, unless she was to be advantaged thereby? If she had, we would have considered Richmond very foolish. We do not believe, however, that the building of such a road would be detrimental to the interest of Richmond. It is true, Richmond would have to compete with Baltimore and other cities, for the trade of this section, but such a competition would be the life of Richmond. It would give her a vitality which she has never had. The trade which the Valley now furnishes, would be small, compared with what she would then furnish. To secure this trade, Richmond would put forth vigorous efforts-she would, as Baltimore is doing, import direct from foreign countries, instead of being the middle man between the country merchant and the importer. If she did not put forth efforts to induce a trade from the interior, she would not deserve the trade. But she will do so. She only needs a live coal on her back to make her move. This road would unquestionably add greatly to the wealth of Richmond, Baltimore and other cities, but what is of more importance to us it would add greatly to our own wealth & to the interest of the entire State. Virginia has lain long enough in her undeveloped condition. Her resources must be brought out-must be made available for the general good. Project railroads in every direction: complete and equip them, and her resources will be developed, and her wealth and prosperity greatly enhanced.

As a commencement, we know no better undertaking than to build a railroad through the Valley, & we say, with all our heart, "on with the good work."

The Legislature should facilitate the construction of a railway communication through the Valley, and in other available directions in the State. By no other means can it add some much to the welfare of our people, or so rapidly promote the general interests of Virginia.

News Items

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Local Items

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CAPT. JAS. BUMGARDNER, who was elected Attorney for the Commonwealth, for Augusta County, but was debarred from qualifying by the disfranchising clause of the Alexandria Constitution, being eligible now, said clause having been repealed, announces himself a candidate for re-election. Capt. Bumgardner was elected over several popular competitors, and we hope the wishes of our people, as then expressed, will be respected by his unanimous re-election.

Local Items

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We are much pained to announce the sudden death of our esteemed friend. Dr. R. H. Gambill, for many years assistant Physician at the Western Lunatic Asylum. As a Physician he ranked high, was social and kind as man and warm and sincere as a friend. His death will be greatly felt at the Asylum and is much deplored by his associates and many friends in this community.

Local Items

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WE learn from Mr. H. Risk, Inspector of Spirits &c., that he has inspected, since November 16th, 2270 ½ gallons of Whiskey, 642 gallons of Apple Brandy, 40 gallons of Peach Brandy, 142 ½ gallons of Grape Wine, and 644 gallons of Beer.


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At the residence of her father , Mr. Wm S. [UNCLEAR], near Greenville, Augusta County, Va.. on Friday 8th of Dec. 1865, Miss SALLIE ANN [UNCLEAR], aged about 23 years.

"Death loves a shining mark." This truth was exemplified in the deceased of our young friend. Beautiful in person, attractive in manner, the object upon whom was lavished the love of parents and friends, there was much to bind her to earth. But "whom the Gods love die early." The deadly shaft was launched: the ties of earthly affection were broken: the grave received its prey.

Her death was calm and peaceful. Having embraced Christ as her Savior about eighteen months ago, the sting was extracted from death, and when the end of life's pilgrimage drew near, she "had a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better." Toward the close of her illness, she raised her hands and said:

"Filled with delight, my raptured soul

Would here no longer stay."

"Thy will be done." We commit her dust to its kindred dust and hopefully look forward to the resurrection of the last day.

May the grace of the gospel and the comfort of the Holy Ghost be furnished to the bleeding hearts of her surviving friends.


Farewell, dear Sallie, fare thee well,

That thou art gone, is true;

Though, in the shining courts you dwell,

We've wept-still weep for you.

The angels there, with deep-toned harps,

Bent from the heavenly dome,

And shouted, as she entered there:

"Behold! She comes, she comes."

She came to join the blood-washed hand,

From doubt, and pain and woe;

She came to share these heavenly courts,

Where sorrow is no more.

Here not a cloud shall shade her brow,

Her eyes ne'er shed a tear;

No anxious doubts can pain her now,

No sorrowing hearts are here.

She came to meet long severed ones-

All are united now.

She came with wreaths of gladness twined

Around her beaming brow

She came with raptures songs of joy.

She came with gladness home,

While angels tune their harps anew,

And shout: "she comes, she comes."

Dec 22, I.. C. S.


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