All was not innocence and harmony (OTD, Augusta County, 1852)

Posted on September 7, 2016 by


I’m thinking that… in between blog posts which take time to construct, I’m going to start posting brief “On This Day” (OTD) material, shedding some light on news within the Shenandoah Valley (and, perhaps, the Cumberland Valley, to offer a chance for comparative analysis), during the antebellum. The hope is to provide a look at what life was really like in the Valley… and what is was not like (the stereotypes of the South which don’t consider regional differences, for example).

For starters, the following piece appeared in the Spirit of Jefferson (Charles Town, Va.) on this day in 1852, having been bounced from a story which appeared earlier in the Rockingham Register (Harrisonburg), and had apparently been originally reported in one of the Staunton newspapers. It’s about a rather unpleasant incident which took place near West View (west of Staunton, in Augusta County).

While we often look to the past for some sort of comforting nostalgia, there’s plenty back there which isn’t always pleasant.

I’ll be sharing a wide range of clippings (not always as unpleasant as the one above), giving folks a chance for glimpses into the Valley’s past. Perhaps they will confirm what you already believed… but hopefully they will serve, more frequently, as challenges to what you believe.