Valley of the Shadow
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The War Declared at an End--Restoration of the Authority of the Government--The Political Equality of all the States Declared

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The Valley Railroad Convention

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Full Text of Article

The delegates appointed by the various Counties in the Valley, interested in the organization of the Valley Railroad Company, assembled in Staunton on the 4th of April, 1866.

Colonel Bolivar Christian, of Augusta, called the meeting to order, and on his motion Judge H. W. Sheffey, of Augusta, was called to the Chair; and on motion of Dr. T. W. Shelton, of Augusta, S. M. Yost, appointed Secretary.

The Chair briefly explained the object of the meeting, to be to take some steps to secure the subscription of sufficient stock to comply with the conditions of the Charter, precedent to the organization of the Company.

The following gentlemen reported as delegated from the counties named.

Roanoke--John Trout.

Botetourt--John J. Anderson, T. Henry Johnston, C. Pendleton, Carey Breckinridge, W. H. McCue, W. E. M. Word and John W. Jones.

Rockbridge--D. E. C. Brady, William F. Pogue, A. Patterson, H. B. Jones, Jacob Mohler, J. W. Hamilton, Coleman Yellott, J. B. Dorman, J. T. Patton, and J. Whipple.

Augusta--J. B. Baldwin, T. J. Michie, George Baylor, Franklin McCue, J. Wayt Bell, A. Mohler, D. Kunkle, H. W. Sheffey, B. Christian, W. Allan, M. G. Harman, A. H. H. Stuart, Dr. T. W. Shelton, A. McChesney, W. M. Tate, J. M. McCue, Dr. C. R. Harris, Thomas Gambill, W. Crawford, Thos. Burke, Sr., General John Echols, Major James Walker, Charles Grattan, D. S. Bell, Jacob Schreckhise, George Shuey, A. A. McPheeters, W. A. Bell, W. A. Abney, J. Bell, David Craig, Jed Hotchkiss, Col. A. W. Harman, Dr. John McChesney, A. G. Christian, Major John A. Harman, and Dr. W. B. McChesney.

Rockingham--Colonel A. S. Grey, M. H. Effinger, P. Bradly, J. C. Hill, J. S. Thompson, J. S. Rohler, A. W. Jones, S. M. Yost, and W. M. Sibett.

Shenandoah--Dr. J. B. Strayer.

Berkeley--J. M. Ridgway

Alleghany--James Burke.

Richmond City--A. M. Lee

On motion of Colonel Bolivar Christian, the Chairman appointed the following committee to nominate permanent officers of the Convention: Messrs. Word, of Botetourt; Trout, of Roanoke; Letcher, of Rockbridge; Christian, of Augusta; Effinger, of Rockingham; Strayer, of Shenandoah; Ridgway, of Berkeley; Lee, of Richmond City; Burke, of Alleghany.

The committee retired for a short time, returned, and reported the following permanent officers, which report was adopted.

PRESIDENT--Colonel John T. Anderson, of Botetourt.

VICE PRESIDENTS--Judge H. W. Sheffey, of Augusta; Colonel A. S. Grey, Rockingham; Dr. J. B. Strayer, Shenandoah; A. Patterson, Rockbridge; John Trout, Roanoke.

SECRETARIES--S. M. Yost, Rockingham; A. M. Garber, Jr., Augusta; S. H. Letcher, Rockbridge.

The Chairman appointed Colonel M. G. Harman and W. E. M. Word, to conduct Colonel Anderson to the Chair.

Colonel A. returned thanks for the honour conferred upon him in a few felicitous remarks.

Hon. A. H. H. Stuart moved that a committee of one member from each county represented, be appointed to prepare and report business for the consideration of the Convention.

The Chairman appointed the following gentlemen, as the Committee: Messrs. A. H. H. Stuart, of Augusta; Dorman of Rockbridge; Johnston, of Botetourt; Trout, of Roanoke; Burke, of Alleghany; Effinger, of Rockingham; Strayer, of Shenandoah; Ridgway, of Berkeley; Lee, of Richmond City.

The committee, after an absence of an hour, reported the following resolution.


Resolved, 1st, That it gives strong hope of the success of the great enterprise in which we are engaged to find at this busy period of the year, and in the present straitened circumstances of our people, delegates from so many counties of the State, convened to devise the best means for ensuring the construction of the Valley Railroad.

2d, That we deem the construction of a Railroad from the Potomac to the Virginia and Tennessee Railroad, essential to the full development and prosperity of the great Valley of Virginia, a result which can never be accomplished by means of roads passing from mountain to mountain, across the Valley and at right angles to the line of its production and wealth.

3d, That we regret that an improvement as essential to the welfare and growth of one third of the State should, by any, be termed antagonistic to the interest of any other part of the Commonwealth, to the commercial prosperity of our cities, or as affecting injuriously the security of her investments in internal improvements, and we think it can be demonstrated by argument, and are sure it will be shown by experience, that such wealth cannot flow from a course so fruitful of blessings to one of the great divisions of the Commonwealth.

4th That the first steps to be taken by the friends of the proposed road, is to cause to be opened, at suitable places, books of subscription to the stock of the Valley Railroad Company, and that so soon as one thousand shares of such Stock shall have been subscribed, a meeting of Stockholders should be convened, and the Company organized in accordance with the provisions of its Charter.

5th. That books of subscription be opened at such times and places as the Commissioners named in the Charter deem most expedient.

6th, That as soon as the Company shall have been organized, its true policy will be to form such connections with the Virginia Railroads between Harrisonburg and the Potomac, as will afford such guarantees, founded on unity of interest and concert of action as will tend to induce capitalists from abroad to invest in this Stock of the Company, in accordance with the regulations to be presented by the Board of Directors, and also to ensure the cooperation of the cities of Baltimore, Philadelphia and other commercial cities, in the speedy completion of the work.

Mr. Christian, offered the following amendment, which was adopted.

Mr. Stuart explained and enforced the report of the committee, in an able speech of half an hour.

Mr. Christian read the provision of the Charter of the Valley Railroad, and offered the following amendment to the report of the committee:

Amendment--That the Books for subscription of Stock are to be opened now and here; and in the opinion of the Convention, the amount necessary to secure the Charter should be taken, and an organization effected without delay.

That we hail with joy the prospect, held out by the acts of the Legislatures of Virginia and West Virginia, of the speedy completion of the Covington and Ohio Railroad; a work destined to pour into Virginia a full tide of wealth--giving trade from the Valleys of the Ohio and the Mississippi, to receive and distribute the outgoing and incoming currents of which will tax the capacities of all the improvements of Virginia, including those of the Valley Railroad, which we foresee will be one of the most valuable arteries of the Great Central trunk line of commerce, attracting from districts and cities lying North east as well as Southwest, of the point of intersection of the two improvements, trade and travel which would not otherwise reach the central improvement; and at that point receiving for distribution, freight and passengers, which otherwise would now pass over the central line.

7th, That we cannot close these expressions of our views, without declaring the pleasure with which we have read the Proclamation of the President of the United States, restoring Virginia, to the full enjoyment of her rights as a State in the Union, and to her people the unobstructed privilege of pursuing the arts of peace and of reviving the prosperity of the Commonwealth.

General Echols, of Augusta, supported the resolution of Mr. Christian, in a forcible, practical and eloquent speech.

Colonel M. G. Harman concurred in the able and eloquent remarks of Gen. Echols, and appealed to every farmer and business man in the Valley, to subscribe to the capital Stock to the extent of his ability.

The vote was then taken on the report of the committee, and the amendment, and both were unanimously adopted.

Col. A. S. Grey, in the Chair. On motion of Mr. Word, of Botetourt, a committee of two was appointed by the Chairman, consisting of Messrs. Word and Christian, to wait upon Col. J. B. Baldwin, with a request from the Convention that he appear to address them.

Mr. Stuart again addressed the Convention in a spirited and well conceived Speech.

Colonel Baldwin made his appearance, and delivered a brief address, replete with sound, practical sense, and earnest appeal.

Messrs. J. B. Dorman and Coleman Yellott, of Rockbridge, having been called upon respectively by the Convention, delivered brief and appropriate Speeches, which were received with evidences of gratification by the audience.

At this point, Col. Harman announced to the Chair, that more than enough of stock had been subscribed, to comply with the requirements of the Charter, before the organization of a Company could be effected; and on his motion, the Convention adjourned with a request from the President, that the Stockholders meet in the Court House at 5 o'clock, P. M., to elect a President and Directors.

John T. Anderson, President.

S. M. Yost, A. M. Garber, Jr., S. H. Letcher, Secretaries.

Meeting of the Stockholders of the Valley Railroad

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The Stockholders met at 5 o'clock, P. M.

Gen. Echols explained the object of the meeting to be the election of a President and Directors, and the organization of the Valley Railroad Company. On this motion, Col. John T. Anderson, of Botetourt, was called to the chair, and S. M. Yost, of Rockingham chosen Secretary.

Gen. Echols, after paying a just and merited compliment to the great energy and financial ability of the nominee, placed in nomination Col. M. G. Harman, of Augusta, as a suitable person for the President of the Company. No other person being in nomination, and the vote being taken vice voce, Col. H. was unanimously elected President of the Valley Railroad Company.

On motion of Mr. Christian, the number of Directors was enlarged to eleven.

Mr. McCue, of Botetourt, nominated Edmund Pendleton, of Botetourt, as one of the Directors, who was unanimously elected.

Mr. Letcher nominated D. E. C. Brady, of Rockbridge as one of the Directors, who was unanimously elected.

Col. Gray nominated Mr. Harvey Effinger, who was unanimously elected.

N. K. Trout, of Augusta, nominated Dr. J. B. Strayer, of Shenandoah, who was unanimously elected.

John Echols, Boliver Christian, Wm. Allen and John B. Baldwin, were nominated respectively by Col. A. W. Harman, Judge H. W. Sheffey, Maj. J. A. Harman, and Capt. Chas. Grattan, and unanimously elected.

Col. Pendleton nominated W. E. M. Word, of Botetourt, who was unanimously elected.

Mr. Letcher nominated Jas. T. Patton, of Rockbridge, who was unanimously elected.

Judge Sheffey moved that the proceedings of the Convention and the meeting of the Stockholders be published in the newspapers of the Valley and that the papers of the State generally be requested to copy them.

On motion the meeting adjourned.

J. T. Anderson,

S. M. Yost, Secretary.

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The Greaver Case

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Under orders to investigate the facts and report to him from Gen. Terry, this case was brought before Capt. Tukey, of the Freedmen's bureau for investigation of the so-called persecution of Alex Greaver, reported as a "persecuted refugee and always a loyal Union man"--if he did bale hay and forage faithfully for the Confederate States two years and only deserted when ordered to take a musket. A large number of witnesses were examined and so far the investigation seems to be going against this corn crib refugee, so-called.

Our Imprisoned Chief

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The Washington Chronicle of the 5th report that a current report says Ex-President Davis has made application for a writ of Habeus Corpus; his ground for so doing being the President's peace proclamation. And why not? If the war is at an end and a whole people declared restored to their rights, why should their representative head be kept in prison? Jefferson Davis was but the agent of eight millions of people and there is no true man among them who does not feel that his imprisonment is wrong, while they whom he represented go free. In this connection we quote a few sensible remarks on this subject from a late member of the N. Y. Herald. May we soon be able to chronicle the glad tidings of Mr. Davis' release and return to his home, friends, family and usefulness in the great work before us, The Herald says:

Jefferson Davis is not a criminal in the ordinary sense. His acts are lifted out of the category of crimes by their national character. They are to be judged in a different light from that in which we examine the common offences against society for which we prepare the prison and the halter. In the celebrated debate in Parliament on the American colonies Edmund Burke recognized the difficulty of framing a bill of indictment against a whole people. This same difficulty embarrasses the case of Davis. Where we can allege any act against the United States that was his personally, and that was not done by him as a representative of a people, who, according to the dogmas on which our government is founded, had a full right to the exercise of sovereign powers? Did Jefferson Davis wage war against us at Gettysburg, on July 2, 1863? Then who was it waged war at Vicksburg, on the same day? If we set about accusing of treason the whole people, whose will this man carried out, from what stand-point shall we frame our accusation? Shall it be from the standpoint of those in the government who maintain that the Southern States are conquered territory, and, therefore, that the confederacy was a foreign nation? Doubtless we should frame it from this latter, as this is the view of those who clamor for the trial of Davis. But if he was the ruler of a foreign nation, how shall we punish him for treason against our government?

We must take in this case higher ground than any people or government has hitherto had the moral courage to take. We must throw aside the ancient fictions, and deal with facts as facts. We must recognize that men like Davis have had their grand uses in the life of a nation; that they make those stands and cause those wars that purify government and render it impossible for it to become partial and tyrannical. Davis represented some millions of men who believed that they were oppressed, and who rose with the spirit of freemen. Shall we stultify our history--our immortal declaration--by saying that the representative of all those men deserves death for having been their representative? Where does government originate? With the people--we declare by every fact of our history. And with how many people if not with eight millions? We agree with the radical members that Congress should take up the case of Davis, but we believe it should take it up only to set him at large on these high grounds recognizing openly and bravely as the sense of the American people that acts such as his do not deserve death. We shudder as we read of the terrible acts of British officials in Jamaica, who out barbarize barbarism; we shudder to contemplate British judges sending men to twenty years penal servitude for the crime of desiring a better government for their country. Let us be consistent with these feelings, and set an example of national magnanimity that may put that Power to the blush. Our cause does not call for any man's blood, and we must not let partisan hatred put its bloody stains on our national history.


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Southern Travel to the Virginia Springs. Importance of Advertising. Letter From Mobile.

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Mobile, April 3, 1866

Lyttleton Peyton, Esq.--Dear Sir: I am indebted to a Richmond paper for your name, and write you with the view of learning the exact locality of the Virginia Hot and Healing Springs, and by what route from Lynchburg they are reached.

If there should be mail facilities to that place, I would esteem it a personal favor that you enclose and forward my letter to the Proprietors, with the request that they write me the comparative quality between them and those of Arkansas. My object is to visit those of Arkansas, but being advised to the other--and being from Virginia--at an early age however, prefer my native State. I am so much of an invalid tho' that my health and a sound constitution is my only desire.

It would be well were these watering places advertised in this part of the country--thousands would visit them, and many will this year.
Very Respectfully
J. F. Saum

The above letter has been handed us by the Proprietors of the Virginia Hotel. We publish it to show the importance to our Spring Proprietors, of advertising the fact that they are prepared to accommodate the great travel that wishes to visit our Mountains. The Virginian, having a large and increasing circulation South, owing to our former connection with the press there, is the best medium for the purpose. The route to reach the Hot or any of the Springs from Lynchburg is via Charlottesville by rail to Staunton, thence by rail to Millboro' or Jackson's River and from the Railroad that energetic stage man James I. A. Trotter can take you, in good coaches to any of the Springs. There are accommodations for all and a warm welcome.

Miscegenation in Staunton. Nobody Can Deny So Plain A Fact.

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Mr. John Scott, of Waterbury, Conn., to whom we alluded under the heading of "Miscegenation in Staunton," in our last issue, sends us a communication in which he makes his explanation of his conduct Sunday week. We give him the benefit of his explanation. He can't see how any one could possibly "deny so plain a fact." He says:--

"Under the above title appeared an article in the "Virginian," in which, from a want of knowledge of facts, probably, the writer was extremely severe in his denouncement of the conduct, of one whom he called a "Disciple of Miscegenation," &c. The facts were these; which we give, hoping to correct a false impression.

At the close of Sabbath School, a pupil, wishing to obtain a hymn book, was told, that those for sale were at our house. Being determined to obtain one, she watched us start and came down the walk at the same time. We thought of asking her to walk behind, lest we might be misrepresented. But the thought that she was, as we supposed, known to be a pupil, and that we were going nowhere else than from School home, and that it was known that our business brings us necessarily into contact with these people, more than it does citizens, would, we thought, save us from being misunderstood in our motives. As to "Miscegenation in Staunton" we will not deny so plain a fact; but do most emphatically deny being a "Disciple" ourselves, as no man can be more opposed to the doctrine than we are, and have ever been."

Judge Lucas P. Thompson

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The Ladies Soldiers Cemetery Association

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The ladies, wish to enclose the ground, have the graves turffed, and marked with stone or board as contributions justify, flowers and shrubbery planted, those lying in unprotected places through the country removed to this Cemetery and the place kept in order. All communications on this subject should be addressed to the Ladies Soldiers Cemetery Committee, Staunton.

Papers properly authenticated by this Committee will be given collectors to prevent imposition.

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Brutal Murder

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A Stage Line From Lexington to Bonsack's

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Corporation Court

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Corporation Election

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Churchville Oil Company

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Cleaning Up

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The Great Valley Railroad Convention

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The proceedings of this Convention will be found on our first page. It was largely attended and after some skirmishing, went to work the right way. The well known energy of the officers elected and the enthusiasm of the people on this subject, give every guarantee that the road will soon be put under contract. One great point is to unite it and the Manassas Gap Railroad, and, we have every reason to hope that object will soon be accomplished. A noticeable feature in the Convention, was, the enthusiasm that the mere mention of the name of the glorious City of Baltimore, gave rise to. In a few days, we feel confident, we can send good news to our people about the Valley Railroad.

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