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Card from the Superintendent of the Penitentiary, 1868

Card from the Superintendent of the Penitentiary, 1868


Wheeling Intelligencer, Sept. 22, 1868, p. 3:


Card from the Superintendent of the Penitentiary.

Moundsville, W. Va., Sept. 18, '66. [68]Editors Intelligencer:

One day after date of the grand rebel fissle at your city, I have time to draw my breath. Seeing communication a few days since in the Register, over the signature of Tax-Payer, from our town, I beg your indulgence that I can correct the misstatements of Tax-Payer. In the first place, he charges me with taking State teams, convicts, guards, wagons, and all such, and even giving a part of my precious time to the service of pole cutting and raising. An idea was suggested by a friend that the act of cutting and raising a Grant and Colfax pole would satisfy the people of our State that I am for the great captain of the nation and for the true friend of West Virginia Schuyler Colfax.

Now as the facts of the case. Geo. Edwards, James McConnell and your humble servant went to the farm of Hon. James Burley, who kindly proffered us the run of his woods for poles, for the purpose above mentioned. We there cut and trimmed the poles. The next day I took Capt. Williamson, three guards, six convicts, timber wheels, heavy wagon, two yoke of oxen belonging to Hon. James Burley and myself, and one yoke belonging to the State of West Virginia, making three yoke. I took the convicts out that I could cut and haul some check posts for our works at the penitentiary (for raising and lowering our derricks) and to assist in loading the poles for Grant and Colfax. And now I make this proposition, as custodian of the interests of West Virginia at the penitentiary: That I will furnish my own personal teams, State wagons, ropes , blocks and gearing, to haul and raise a Jackson or Douglas pole. If any of the true followers of the above illustrious names make a requisition upon me for assistance, I shall accord it with great pleasure, knowing that the followers of the above great and good men, are now heartily co-operating with the loyal Republican party, and when I rase a pole to their memory, the party that I co-operate with, would not cry tax. Now make a little calculation on tax. Supposing the grumbler did actually pay any tax, which I doubt very much that he can show a tax receipt for any amount above the price of a watermelon the principal commodity of this region. Now on the other hand see how it looks from a stand point taken from the sanction of the little fellow that runs the Register machine. Supposing five or six gentlemen employed by the economical Democratic party of Wheeling as Policemen, receiving each ten dollars per month more than the guards at the Penitentiary should be engaged in raising a derrick upon the roof of the old Ott corner to suspend a beautiful, and now, much love flag by the modern Democracy. What a contrast. Seven years ago, instead of hanging those beautiful emblems to the breeze, that they might be adored and revered by all who gazed upon them, they proposed to trail them in the dust. Comment is useless. Guardians of the city obey your Boss, if you break the owners. The issues of the party with which I affiliate, are, shall we have peace or war. We are for Peace with all its blessings.

You will pardon me for the slight digression touching upon the acts of your city fathers and police, the case being analgous to my own, the only difference, I work for the State, and they for the city not of Brotherly Love, but of Lager Beer and Stogie Segars. Tax-Payer, pitch in, under your proper signature then I can know my man.

Yours at the Penitentiary,McFadden.

N. B. -- If my memory serves me aright this Register establishment could not procure a flag larger than a half sheet of foolscap, at the time a certain Mr. Lee surrendered at Appomattox Court House, until they had notice that a real flag of proper dimentions must appear in thirty minutes. Why can't they have real flags now, as that twenty-five thousand dollars they got from New York would buy flags enough to wrap up all the rebels in West Virginia.McF.

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