Peninsula Enterprise, January 9, 1892


Laborers -- FisheriesMoral -- Alcohol

Edward Long, of Baltimore, a hand employed on the dredge-boat of Capt. James Byrd, was found dead in the thicket of what is known as "Island Fields," near Muddy Creek, last Saturday. The verdict of the jury, at an inquest held over him, was "that he died from excessive drinking and exposure." On the Thursday previous, he left the boat for Bloxom station, and on his way back, it is supposed, lay down to sleep and died from exposure.


Transportation -- Water - Strandings

A large steamship went ashore four miles south of Dawson Shoals on last Thursday.


Moral -- Murder

A writ of error has been awarded by Judge Gunter, in case of Commonwealth vs. George Drier.


Fields -- Livestock - HorsesMoral -- Other violent crime

Belle Haven.

Mr. William Taylor has sold his fine one year old Daniel colt to Richmond parties for a good round sum.

Mr. Robert James, of Jamesville, was shot in the hip on Monday last, by Judson Ashby. The ball passed around to the back and was extricated by Dr. J. T. B. Hyslop, attending physician. The wound not serious though painful. Ashby has left for parts unknown.


Fields -- Livestock - HorsesInfrastructure -- Commercial - Residential construction


A very valuable colt of Mr. Henry O. Finney, for which an offer of $500 had been declined, died last week.

Two handsome dwellings have recently been completed at this place for Messrs. H. R. and E. M. Boggs. They moved into their store this week. Boggs & Finney will occupy the storehouse vacated by them.




Mr. M. Sturgis and family have moved from Stockton to this place, to open a boot and shoemaking establishment.

Synopsis of Road Law.

Transportation -- Road - Legislation

Adopted at the meeting held at Accomac C. H., January 6th, 1892:

1st -- One Commissioner of Roads appointed by the Court for each magisterial district, who shall have general supervision of the roads in his district, see that the several Surveyors perform their duty, examine roads every three months, make quarterly reports to Court of their condition, apportion funds among the several precincts, etc. -- term of office two years -- to give bond in penalty not less than $1,000 -- compensation $3 per day for time actually and necessarily employed, but not to exceed $100 in any one year in all the districts, except the Islands, and that not to exceed $30.

2nd -- To be One Surveyor of Roads for District of Islands; ten for Atlantic; eight for each of the other three district -- to hold office for two years -- to be appointed by the Court, but upon the recommendation of the Commissioner of Roads for the district -- the Surveyors are to collect the fines from the delinquents, instead of the Constable or Sheriff, to make quarterly reports to Commissioner of Roads of work done, fines collected, etc., to work, drain, etc., roads and construct minor bridges or repair bridges where the amount to be expended in either case is under $20 -- to give bond in penalty not less than $500 -- compensation $2 per day for time actually and necessarily employed, but not to exceed $50 in a year, also 5 per cent, on all fines, etc., collected.

3rd -- Every male person over 18 and under 60, except ministers of the Gospel, and persons exempted on account of physical disability liable to work on roads four days in the year, or can pay to the Surveyor $2 on or before August 1st -- a day's work to be ten hours.

If Commissioner of Roads finds it necessary in order to drain the road, to cut a ditch through adjacent lands, the land owners will be required to pay such a proportionate amount of the expenses of cutting the ditch as his lands will be benefitted thereby.

The Board of Supervisors to levy a tax of fifteen cents on the $100 of assessed value of property for road purposes. The building or repair of any bridge where the expense is over $20, is to be borne by the county at large; all other expenses to be borne by each magisterial district. The Commissioner of Roads in each district to distribute the amount raised by the district to the several Surveyors according to what he thinks their precincts require.

The meeting passed a resolution requesting the people to hold meetings at each voting precinct, on Saturday, the 23d of January, and select delegates to meet at the Court House, on Wednesday, February 3d, to either adopt or reject a road law which will be drafted according to the above outline -- each precinct to be entitled to one delegate for every one hundred voters, or fraction thereof exceeding fifty cast at last November election.

The number of delegates each precinct is entitled to will be stated in the next issue of the ENTERPRISE.

Parsons on Warren's Reply.

Transportation -- Road - Legislation

MR. EDITOR -- If my friend, Mr. L. D. Warren, had not misrepresented me I should not say one word in reply to his communication in your last issue. He asserted that I favored borrowing $50,000. This is a misstatement. I mentioned no sum, but I did favor borrowing such sum, on long time bonds, as would be required, to make out public roads good and then to create a sinking fund to pay off the bonds at maturity. Governor McKinney suggested the same idea, and Mr. Gillet favored it with slight modifications and named $25,000 as the probably sum. I think this sum would be ample if we use the best road making machinery, and certainly it would be a mere bagatelle to a great county like Accomac, and if its payment were extended over a period of years it would never be felt. Certainly on this point I am in company with prudent, cautious, level-headed men, and I am not at all alarmed by the woeful forebodings and pathetic appeal of my friend Warren "to let this cup pass" -- even if he does think its dregs are so bitter. I see nothing alarming in it. All progressive communities borrow money. The great volume of the business of the world is done on credit.

Again, Mr. Warren misrepresents me, by saying, I do not want the poor man to bear any part of the public burden. He knows I advocated a capitation tax of 50 cents to help keep the roads in repair and there is already a capitation tax of $1.50. Is this nothing? It may be little to my drummer friend, but it is considerable to a laboring man. Now what would 50 cents per capita yield in Accomac? I answer about $3,500. Ten cents on the $100 property tax would yield, say, $5,500, and about that sum is now expended on our roads. These sums added together would make about $14,500 -- more in my opinion than would be necessary to keep out roads in good condition with improved machinery. The surplus (which ought to be $2,500) could go into the sinking fund to pay off the bonds. This plan may seem wild to friend Warren, but in my opinion, it isn't half so wild as his pet Keller panacea, for delinquent road hand and laziness. Indeed, I think this wonderful panacea was born in the wrong country. If it had been born on the banks of the Neva, the Czar would have fallen down and worshipped it. This creature just suits the genius of his government. On another point, my friend seems greatly bewildered. I threw a text of Scripture at his great panacea, just as David threw the stone at Goliath, and lo! behold, friend Warren mistook that text, Exodus V -- 18, for "Egyptian brickyard." Terrible mistake. Well he charges me with making him "odious" to the laboring class. I didn't do it. His great invention is the odious thing.

Again, he thinks I want office -- no, my friend, I want no office. I was elected to the Legislature in 1876 and got all the glory I want in that line. I do not flatter the poor laborer but I want him to have justice and to feel contented, and that his interests are as well protected here as anywhere he can go. We want him to stay with us. On his strong muscular arms depends our prosperity. There is a right way and a wrong way to do everything. The right way to build public works of every kind, roads included, is for the State or municipality to go into to the market and hire its labor, just as private individuals do. No government has the right to compel the service of its citizens, except for public defense, or in the enforcement of its laws. To do so is an unwarranted and undemocratic interference with individual liberty. The State can levy capitation or property taxes and hire its labor, thus preventing the friction, odium and harassment of compulsory labor -- always inefficient. But an increase of the capitation tax is obnoxious to the present constitution, and therefore the wisest plan is that suggested by Mr. Gillet to permit the road hands to commute by the prepayment of a very moderate tax before the commencement of the road year. My friend Warren was greatly confused on this point. He asserts that "two or four days labor on the roads is not too much to require out of 365." He don't allow for Sundays and bad days. But which does he mean "two or four?" He's bewildered. Four days each for the 7,000 road hands would be 28,000 days that labor would contribute annually towards keeping them in repair with good machinery. Two days labor with the privilege of commuting by the prepayment of one dollar is the ultimatum that should be exacted. A larger sum will cause dissatisfaction, (to that large element of our population) the oystermen and laboring poor who are far less interested in good public roads than the property holders.



Transportation -- Railroad - Rates and fares

The railroad commission bill, better know as the Kent bill, will soon engage the attention of our Legislators, and it is stated, that while it will pass the House, with the present opposition, which appears to be crystalizing for its defeat, it cannot in its present shape get through the Senate, unless the provision is eliminated giving the commission the authority to fix rates. Stripped of this feature, we fail to see from a careful reading of the bill, that it is a matter whether it passes or not, so far as the Eastern Shore is concerned. The failure on our part heretofore to secure the rates given to those at a longer distance from market causes us to want railroad commissioners, if for any purpose, to make rates which will enable us to keep the thousands of dollars in our pockets now being taken annually from them. We want the same justice meted out to us which is given to others -- we should have it -- and we have no patience with the outcry, do not cripple the railroads by giving the commission power to fix rates, which is now being indulged in by many newspapers in the State -- and meet it with the reply, do not paralyze the industry in which the farmers are engaged by permitting the railroads to impose upon them burdens so excessive as to deprive them of any profit in their business. The Legislature in selecting the commissioners will have some regard, we presume, for their capacity and integrity, and if disposed to deal justly with all concerned, the scales should be kept so evenly balanced by them, that the interests of the railroads will be properly cared for as well as the individuals.

Peninsula Enterprise
Accomac Court House
January 9, 1892