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The Shenandoah

Julia Davis

Publication Year: 2011

In 1945, West Virginia author Julia Davis penned The Shenandoah as part of the Rivers of America Series, a landmark collection of books written by literary figures over a period of thirty years. In this classic reprint, now with an introduction by Christopher Camuto, Davis tells the history of the Shenandoah Valley and River, drawing on her own research and the experiences of ancestors who settled and lived in the area. Her book provides a poetic vision of both the river and the valley, preserving a fragment of America’s landscape.

Published by: West Virginia University Press

Front Cover

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Title Page, Series Page, Copyright

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Introduction

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pp. vii-xvi

TO THOSE who know and love it, the Shenandoah River remains as Julia Davis described it more than a half century ago—unassuming, “hidden . . .

Dedication

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p. xvii-xvii

Map

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pp. xviii-xvii

Part I: Promise

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Song

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pp. 3-5

IT IS A SAILOR’S CHANTEY, a lost and hungry chantey, a song of faraway men reminding themselves of things they have loved, a sea song to an . . .

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The Unrecorded Past

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pp. 6-16

THE SHENANDOAH RIVER flows northward for one hundred and fifty miles through a valley in Virginia between the Blue Ridge and the Allegheny . . .

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Exploration

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pp. 17-25

THE WHITE MAN had been fifty years established on the lowlands of the coast. The starving time had been forgotten, forgotten the “country sickness” which . . .

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Settlement

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pp. 26-39

THERE WERE THREE GREAT STRAINS in the early settlement of the Shenandoah Valley: the Germans, and the Scotch-Irish, both Protestant, both with . . .

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Pioneers

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pp. 40-51

AS THE YEARS PASSED life took on a pattern in the Valley—a pattern of small log cabins in the clearings or the grasslands, of long laborious days, . . .

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Washington

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pp. 52-61

IN 1748, Lord Fairfax, pursuing the regulation of his affairs, sent two young men to survey the northern end of his Valley property. One was a cousin, . . .

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Massacres

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pp. 62-68

AFTER BRADDOCK’S DEFEAT, many of the back inhabitants gave themselves up for lost. In Pennsylvania and Maryland the frontiers were almost . . .

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Fort Loudoun

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pp. 69-84

WHEN COLONEL WASHINGTON took charge at Winchester in the September of 1755 he found the countryside in confusion, and he reported on it . . .

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Revolution

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pp. 85-101

FORT LOUDOUN STOOD ON ITS HILL, completed at last in spite of governors and commissaries. Its eighteen cannons made it so formidable that . . .

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Expansion

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pp. 102-112

A FINISHED WAR is just a story for old men. When the Revolution ended and the soldiers of the Shenandoah Valley came home to see what had . . .

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Inventions

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pp. 113-124

SOME HAD INDUSTRIAL AMBITIONS for the Valley, hopes of improving the navigation of the river, where barges regularly floated down but . . .

Part II: Holocaust

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The Fateful Lightning

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pp. 127-140

IN THE SUMMER OF 1860, a professor from the Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, a Major Thomas Jonathan Jackson, went north to take . . .

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The Swift Sword

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pp. 141-156

THE CAUSES of our War Between the States are not within the scope of this narrative. Here should be recorded only the fact that it was desperately . . .

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Marching On

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pp. 157-169

GENERAL JACKSON AND HIS BRIGADE won a new name at Manassas. The official records of the battle made him a hero to a nation thirsty for heroes, and . . .

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The Invaded

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pp. 170-181

THE ANGRY GENERAL on the rise below Winchester did not come to his great trial unprepared. Now he was to reap the benefit of the concentration he . .

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Valley Campaign I

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pp. 182-192

ON THE NIGHT AFTER KERNSTOWN, General Jackson, wrapped in his long coat, stood in the slow chill rain turning the embers of a campfire with . . .

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Valley Campaign II

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pp. 193-202

BEHIND THE FEDERAL LINES in the little village of Front Royal, the citizens had adjusted themselves as best they could to the occupation. Young Tommy Ashby, cousin . . .

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Valley Campaign III

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pp. 203-212

WINCHESTER, WHICH WAS to change hands between sixty-eight and seventy-two times before the war ended, had a brief respite, a brief and busy interlude, when . . .

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The Long Year

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pp. 213-229

AND NOW THE VALLEY was again without its army. The two weeks of joy in Winchester fled like a dream, a confused time of troops passing and repassing, a . . .

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The Burning

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pp. 230-242

THE CONFEDERATE ARMY FELL BACK through eastern Virginia, back to Brandy Station, back to the bridge over the Rappahannock, back to winter quarters . . .

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The Starving Crows

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pp. 243-256

GENERAL SHERIDAN’S ARMY, assembling 50,000 strong at Harpers Ferry, was named the Army of the Shenandoah, a fact which gave small satisfaction . . .

Part III: Recovery

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The Hero

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pp. 259-271

ONE AFTERNOON in the early autumn of 1865, a solitary traveler, wearing a gray military coat from which the buttons and insignia had been removed, rode . . .

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The Faith

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pp. 272-281

ANOTHER DISTINGUISHED CONFEDERATE taught at Lexington during the postwar years, although he did not come there until after the general . . .

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Fool's Gold and True Gold

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pp. 282-292

DURING THE LAST THIRTY YEARS of the nineteenth century, the people of the Valley were concerned with one absorbing problem—the necessity of making . . .

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Past into Present

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pp. 293-303

AND AGAIN TIME PASSED into another century, and another great war was just a story for old men. They sat under the oaks, the aging soldiers, and saw . . .

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Valley Tour I

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pp. 304-312

THE PRESENT AND THE PAST have flowed together. There is a new road now along the crest of the old blue mountains. From Rockfish Gap near . . .

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Valley Tour II

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pp. 313-324

NOT FAR FROM FRONT ROYAL, where the hills begin to rise into the mountains, is a remount station of the United States Army, which breeds and trains . . .

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Valley Tour III

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pp. 325-339

GO NORTH THEN ON THE VALLEY PIKE, where at least one man has died for every yard over which the automobile runs equably. You may try to . . .

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Epilogue

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pp. 340-343

THIS THEN, is the Valley of the Shenandoah, a fair land, long in memories and rich in peace. Stonewall Jackson’s trenches on the hills above the Valley Pike . . .

Postscript

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pp. 344-346

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Acknowledgement

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p. 347-347

A WORK OF THIS KIND must have so much assistance, so many contribute help and interest, that it seems invidious to single out a few. Especial thanks, . . .

Bibliography

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pp. 348-355

About Julia Davis Adams

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p. 356-356

Back Cover

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E-ISBN-13: 9781933202969
E-ISBN-10: 1933202963
Print-ISBN-13: 9781933202952
Print-ISBN-10: 1933202955

Page Count: 400
Publication Year: 2011

Series Title: West Virginia Classics