It is October 28, 1862.
Less a village than a crossroads, Greenbrier does boast one small store
the proprietor of which is also the postmaster.
Names familiar to the valley - Roulette, Poffenberger, Newcomer, Fahrney, and Keedy, are sprinkled around the settlement, most of them farmers, all sustaining themselves with some surplus. Though not a particularly prosperous community;
it does not know want or hardship.
Sheep, cattle, pigs, goats, corn, wheat, barley and all the other
staples of the valley are in abundance.
Otho Roulette even tried his hand, with some success, with tobacco for a few years
until it exhausted the field.
The fences are always well maintained and there is no understory in tidy woodlots.
Being a cross-roads with a small store, news regularly travels to the hamlet.
The other business (of sorts) in the settlement is a small forge.
The smith, a recent transplant from Hagerstown, claims that he can
"mend anything but a broken heart."
Savoring the last of the warmth of the season, old Mr. Newcomer sees a lone rider coming down the Rohersville road.
The gathering of men learn the unwelcome news that two opposing armies are again in the Valley and headed this way. Even the most sanguine among them recognize the disruption, displacement, and hardship that looms before them.
To be continued.