The Railraod War

February 21, 1871


The railroad war in the legislature continues into its second week. Both sides, Virginia and Pennsylvania, are still presenting their sides. The Dispatch claims that the goal of Virginia should be to focus on its own material resources.


Railroad matters were again the order of the day in the House of Delegates yesterday. It had been agreed between the advocates and opponents of the bill that it should be allowed to pass the House after a day of speech-making, each party being confedient of its ability to triumph in the Senate. Senate bill No. 3, providing for the sale of the State's interest in the Orange, Alexandria and Manassas railroad, was therefore recommitted, and House bill amending the charter and changing the name of the Alexandria and Fredericksburg railroad was taken up, the question being upon its passage. The first speaker was Mr. Peatross, of Caroline, who spoke at length in advocacy of the immediate passage of the bill. lie was followed by B. F. Jones, of King William, who vowed his intention of going for the bill in its present shape, at least to the extent of one eye; which he seemed to think a good joke, and smiling, sat down. THE BEDFORD DELEGATION SOLID FOB VIRGINIA. Mr. Hensley, of Bedford, felt called upon to enter his disapprobation of this measure more solemnly and decidedly than by a mere vote in the negative upon the passage of the hill. It has been said that the opposition is afraid of future Legislatures, and that we are attempting to arrogate to ourselves the dictation of the railroad policy < f Virginia. But it is the business of this Legislature to look to its own duty, and do it fearlessly, regardless of future General Assemblies. The policy of Virginia should be TO DEVELOP OUR MATERIAL RESOURCES, and that can he done best by building up our seaports. Any policy that contravenes this idea will lie detrimental to the State. It is said that this great through railroad will build up and develop the country along its line, and leave millions of money in Virginia, how is this to be done?
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Megan Wiora




“The Railraod War,” Reconstructing Virginia, accessed February 1, 2023,