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Spirit of Jefferson Farmers Advocate
Charles Town, West Virginia
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January 24, 2018     Spirit of Jefferson Farmers Advocate
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January 24, 2018
 

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SPIRIT of JEFFERSON a,nd I RMER'S ADVOCATE NEWS PAGE A7 Wednesday, January 24, 2018 WILLIAM D. THERIAULT CHARLES TOWN - We often talk about ebration. Party stalwart Col. Braxton Daven- We have told you frankly on what side "history" without trying to define what it is. port chaired the meeting and James W. Belier the "SPIRIT OF JEFFERSON," will be To me, it's the process of explaining part of was appointed secretary, found, battling with all of energy and spirit the past to a present-day audience using rep- Attendees passed resolutions supporting the it possesses. To the Democracy of Jefferson resentative information from the period, national convention's choice of James K. Polk we would say, do our views upon these great Sloppy or devious writers can try to make and George M. Dallas as their candidates for :i: i fundamental questions coincide with yours? history say whatever they want, but if we president and vice president. As in the party If so, may we not ask at your hands, a lib- carefully document our sources and makeplatform of 1840, they were adamant about the eral, united and steady support,t The estab- them available to our readers, you, the public, need for "a total separation of bank and state - lishment of this Journal has not been done are perfectly able to decide for yourself, an independent Treasury and a strict revenue alone at our suggestion - it is no scheme de- History needs to be revised periodically tariff- and for confining the action of the fed- vised by us for mere pecuniary benefit. when new information becomes available, or eral government to its constitutional limits." But now, that it is established, and we have when you want to reach a different audience. In addition, they warned that Great Brit- at stake so much, we ask at the hand of our Baby Boomers and Millennials may need dif- ain's policy to abolish slavery throughout the friends, what is necessary .for keeping our ferent, supplementary information to make world craft abov'e water. The Democratic Party in sense of the past. is proof conclusive of the insidious designs this county have felt, and that seriously, the Men and women, and people of different that Government has long entertained of dis- want of a sentinel to guard the outposts of the races, religions, and ethnic backgrounds like- solving the American Union - that England had been some rocky times, particularly when Democratic camp. Some of our more partial wise deserve to have history that speaks to desires Texas to remain an independent power inexperienced editors discovered that they friends have been induced to believe that our their own beliefs and life experiences,in name, in order that she may be better en- had bitten off more than they could chew. services would be of benefit in this arduous These different audiences make the job of abled to carry on her machinations against Bemused Whig editor John Gallaher hadwork, and we have most cheerfully undertak- the historian complicated, the commercial power of the United States. chronicled most of the mishaps encountered en its performance. The present work is an effort at local his- That you are fully able to sustain us, if you tory, told from the viewpoints of journalists To further clarify this position, they sup- by the editors of the fledgling press, includ- ing the brief career of William S. Smith, who so determine, no one can doubt Arouse then, and give us a helping hand - make the interest who are primarily white, male, Southern and ported Polk's sentiment after "19 weeks' experience, has (to quote his of this journal your interest - exert yourselves pro-slavery that Texas be reannexed, and that the au- own language) quit the scenes of turmoil, per- They lived in a world much smaller than thority and laws of the United States be es- plexities and labors attendant upon the life of by all fair and honorable means to sustain it, ours, without benefit of foresight. But they tablished and maintained within the limits, an editor," and gone into "retirement," to seek and it will be found contending for your rights also lived in a world of complicated social re- and also in the Oregon Territory, and let the "rest" for his "wearied frame" and "heal his at all times and under all circumstances. lationships which tugged them in one direc- fixed policy of our Government be, not to per- broken constitution." You should not be discouraged because oth- er efforts to establish a Democratic paper in tion or another - relations based on religion, mit Great Britain or any other foreign power, When the newspaper finally folded, Harp- this county have failed, but on the other hand, politics, occupation, race and sex that may be to plant a colony, or hold dominion over any obscure or invisible to the modem reader, portion of the people or territory of either, ers Ferry schoolteacher John J. Hickey ac- quired the paper's press, printing paraphema- it should call forth stronger and more active exertions in behalf of this State and national histories sometimes fail Members of the meeting appointed repre- lia and list of subscribers. The proposed new In conclusion, we take pleasure in stating, because their generalities blur the differences sentatives to attend the state Democratic con- paper, named The Jefferson Banner, failed to that as the "SPIRIT OF JEFFERSON" has between one place or group and another. Lo- vention in Charlottesville. William Lucas, appear, been established solely with a view to the fur- cal histories sometimes fail because they lack Henry Bedinger, Capt. John Rowan, Frank The first issue Of the Spirit of Jefferson was therance of Democratic principles, we shall context - they don't connect their story to the Washington and Beller were among those se- publisfied at Charlestown, Virginia, on July have, for the present at least, the assistance of bigger picture, lected from Jefferson County. In closing the 17, 1844. The 26-year-old editor Beller intro- In my new book, I've tried to correct these meeting they resolved, duced himself to his readers with both confi- gentlemen whose experience as writers, and general acquaintance with political questions, defects by providing lots of explanatory infor- That the Spirit of Jefferson, about to be es- dence and humility: mation in the endnotes - available at the West tablished by Beller, at Charlestown, be rec- In assuming the responsibilities that" de- cannot fail of proving beneficial in the cause of Virginia GeoExplorer Project - and through ommended to the support of the Democratic links from the footnotes to original sources. Party generally, and that the different associ- volve upon us as the conductor of a politi- Republicanism, during the pending contest. After reading the young man's first issue, cal journal, more especially at this crisis of Whig veteran John Gallaher noted: "It is well This work offers you two different stories: ations throughout the county, be requested to such momentous import to the future history for the party that they have found so worthy a one is a tale told from the past and the other is extend its circulation, of our country, we are fully aware that we take recipient of their patronage." Perhaps this time, told from the present. Each one is incomplete upon ourselves a task from which a stouter with a crucial presidential election less than without the other. JUlYDemocratsl 7, 1844,hadCharlestown,tried more thanVirginiaonce to es- heart and older headthan our own might well four months' away, he would confront an op- "shrink from with diffidence -- yet, when we Another excerpt from "Jefferson tablish their own newspaper in Jefferson reflect that we bring with us a spiritfirm and ponent worthy of his efforts. County's Fourth Estate, 1840-1850": County. The most recent effort, the Harpers unwavering in the faith that is within us, and -Author William B. Ferry Constitutionalist, was started in the a heart burning for the triumph of the great Theriault is the former July 15, 1844, Jefferson County, Virginia spring of 1839 to support candidate William principles of our party, our embarrassment in chairman of the Jefferson The Democrats' presidential campaign be- Lucas in his bid for the U.S. Congress. Lu- this respect is in no small degree relieved. County Historic Landmarks gan in earnest at the county courthouse two cas had continued to bankroll the paper until After outlining his support of the party plat- Commission weeks after the muted Independence Day cel- he was defeated for reelection in 1841. There form, he continued, ABOVE: Rippon resident June Adams shared several photographs of U.S. 340 expansion, Images she donated to the Jefferson County Museum. The Sam G. Polino Co headquartered In Elkins, was contracted to complete the job, The old Berryville Pike intersected with present-day Withers Larue Road. BELOW, RIGHT: Images of Wilt & Moffatt, a general store, and the Heskett home show evidence of the changes necessitated by the road expansion. Site work Is done at the Intersection of present-day U.S. 340 and Withers Larue Road. The intersection was widened and straightened. Across the street, the Heskett's house has been sim- History F~o~ ~,~ ilarly exposed. Again, you can see the "ghost" of the roof of the old porch. Today, you can see that both terstate road necessitated upgrades, particularly at in- windows and a double-door were built into the old tersections. These photographs show roadwork done foundation. The final photograph shows the site work in the village of Rippon where the old pike intersected being done at the intersection of present-day U.S. 340 present-day Withers Lame Road. The grade to the in- and Withers Larue Road. The intersection was both tersection was lowered and straightened, and the pho- widened and straightened to improve sight lines. tographs chronicle the work. U.S. 340 will soon be dual-lane from Harpers Fer- The Sam G. Polino Co headquartered in Elkins, ry all the way to the Clarke County line where it con- was contracted to complete the job. For several de- tinues into Virginia. Just as in the 1920s when U.S. cades, Polino's firm did road and rail work in eastern 340 was born, this new road will affect changes in West Virginia and western Maryland. The extent of the Jefferson County. It will no longer be necessary to road grade change is evidenced by the photographs of slow down through the Village of Rippon. Some of the Wilt & Moffatt general store and the residence of the twists and turns will be flattened into more gentle Thomas Sylvester and Anna Clipp Heskett. curves to accommodate higher speed. The foundations of both buildings have been ex- But in the end, the seconds saved in posed, and if you look closely at the general store you the commute will more than compen- can see that the folks are standing on a make-shift sate for the cost of the new road. porch because the store's front porch was removed - you can see the "ghost" of the porch roof in the pho- - Doug Perks, a Charles Town tograph. Drive by today and you can see that the tem- native and retired teacher, is the porary steps were replaced by a substantial concrete historian at the Jefferson Count)' porch with steps on both sides. Museum in Charles Town Restaurant profiles, what inspires local chefs, upcoming foodie events, recipes, more! 6 Contact Mary Burns 304-725,2046, ext. 223 or ema,I mary@spiritofjefferson.com full color available $70 extra or spot color for $40 extra! r r I