JANUARY 29, 1865
Kearsarge Prize Money.
you be kind enough to mention in your paper, to correct erroneous views
upon the prize money due the crew of the Kearsarge, the following
memorandum? It will answer many of the letters sent to me on this
subject, and oblige your very humble servant,–Jno.
Money Due the Kearsarge Crew.
law regulating prize money, applicable to this case, is two hundred
dollars a head for each person on board the Alabama.
This will give the crew a little over thirty thousand dollars. Had the Alabama
been brought into port and not sunk, the whole value of her, by the
prize law, would have belonged to the crew, which, as she carried
fifty-eight thousand pounds, would be nearly three hundred thousand
dollars. It will be seen by this that it is rather a losing business to
Jack to sink ships at sea, and when he learns the recent law made he
will be reading it, that he must put his shot in above the water line,
and never below.
learn that the amount raised to be equally divided among the crew and
officers of the Kearsarge, is
something less than twenty-five thousand dollars in New York, and about
eight thousand dollars in Boston.
crew had a letter read to them when in the channel, from the Secretary
of the Navy, that it was the intention of the President to ask Congress
to appropriate a sum equal to the full value of the Alabama
for distribution as prize money, as it was judged that the service
rendered to the country fully warranted it.–New York Herald.
of Canada.–We find the following statement in a late number
of the Pays, an influential
Canadian journal, believed to be the organ of a large party:
following question was discussed at L’Institute Canadien on Thursday
night, “Would not annexation with the United States be preferable to
Lower Canada in every respect to a legislative union disguised under the
name of a Confederation of the British Provinces, such as adopted at the
Quebec Conference?” The debaters, Messrs. Blanchet and Turgeon, spoke
in the affirmative. The principal argument made by them was that in the
confederation scheme of our Canadian Ministers, the influence of each
province would be all but null, and the central government invested with
the sovereign power; while, on the contrary, in a republican and
democratic confederation, such as that of the United States, Lower
Canada would enjoy sovereign power, would have nothing to fear from the
central government, whose powers would be far more limited, its
language, usages, laws and institutions being protected from all hostile
powers. Mr. Blanchet cited as an authority Mr. Etienne Parent, Assistant
Provincial Secretary, who is far from being suspected by the most
faithful conservative of republican predilections, and who wrote in 1856
a similar opinion as to annexation. A vote was taken at the close of the
debate, when the Institute unanimously pronounced in favor of the
of War.–A man, unless he happens to be a devil incarnate,
very soon gets tired of killing those whom he can see. Even the surgeon
who is dissecting a corpse covers up the eyes of his subject. These have
sunk their fire into the abyss of death, but they are still human eyes.
To mark the death-gaze of the slaughtered, the poor fellow who never did
us harm to feel our feet slippery in his blood–to have his blood spurt
on your hands, and his hot brains into our face–this kind of business
very soon sickens and revolts the bravest soldier. When you have seen a
few men slashed or shot to death, my Christian friend, my melodious
poet, with your sing-song about the “tented field” and the
“embattled strife”–my mellifluous pastor, with your high sounding
eloquence about the “God of battles”–you will think as I do.
you may come to acknowledge how comparatively tender and merciful are
the men in shoulder-straps whose trade it is to kill, and how often the
gorge of the soul rises at their dreadful calling. Turn to the Book of
Maccabees, and read that one tremendous pregnant passage–that one
lines: “And Nicanor lay dead in harness.” When you have seen him
thus, lying stark and still, his brave clothes all dabbled in gore, his
mouth wide open, grinning, awful, the bloody foam of his lips dried into
a purple crust, and the camp followers creeping up to rifle his pockets
and draw off his boots, and cut off his ring-finger, and smash his jaw
for the sake of the gold setting to his false teeth, you make form some
idea about the “romances of war” very different from those you have
Dr. Beecher once met a certain independent, though somewhat offensive
little animal in one of his walks, and having no other missile at his
command, threw a large book at him which he was carrying under his arm.
Subsequently the old doctor was asked one day why he did not reply to
some malignant scribbler who had assailed him in a newspaper, and his
reply was as quaint as it was suggestive. Said he, “I once issued an
entire volume to a skunk, but he got the better of me.”
great expense, in constructing and beautifying the new wings of the
Capitol edifice at Washington, the two private stairways leading from
the basement committee rooms to the two halls of Congress were adorned
with elaborate and unique brass banisters and railings, eliciting
general attention and admiration. Recently, by aid of files and other
appliances, portions of these railings have been wrenched from their
place and carried away, doubtless to be sold to a junk dealer. How these
depredations can be committed is a mystery, in view of the fact that
every niche, corner, passage way and hall of the edifice is represented
by a stationary guard, wearing their emblem of authority. It can only be
accounted for on the hypothesis that many of them are too much absorbed
in the newspapers which they peruse as a means of killing time.–New York Express Correspondence.
MACON DAILY TELEGRAPH (GA)
Appointment of Peace Commissioners.
will be seen from our dispatches that President Davis has appointed Vice
President Stephens, Senator Hunter of Virginia, and Judge Campbell of
Alabama. Commissioners to proceed to Washington, for the purpose of
conferring with the Lincoln Government on the subject of peace. We have
none other than circumstantial evidence on which to base an opinion as
to the origin of this move.
this, however, we have sufficient to warrant the belief, that the
proposition came from the North, and was presented to our through Mr.
Blair. Whatever the result may be, we know that as yet, it is the only
real and tangible foreshadowing of peace and a suspension of hostilities
between the two sections. Hitherto, every suggestion looking to
negotiations of every character between the belligerents, aside from the
subject of exchange, has been indignantly spurned by the Northern
Government. May we not hope that this initiatory step, whatever its
immediate results may be, will finally lead to peace and the
independence of the Confederacy.
Change of Policy.
learn from a very good source, says the Recorder,
that a gentleman of prominence in Georgia some short time ago had a long
talk with Mr. Lincoln, circumstances over which he had no control having
carried him to Washington City. Mr. Lincoln confessed that he had begun
the war wrong, and that the policy he had pursued had made more
determined enemies of the South than he anticipated; his policy in
future would be to conciliate the South by kind treatment, and thus
divide us. We can account for Sherman’s kind treatment of the people
of Savannah, and his reported dislike to enter South Carolina for fear
he cannot control his soldiers. Lincoln is right in one respect, that
is, his villainies to us have made him no friends, but most determined
enemies, and repentance at the eleventh hour will not get him his penny,
so much desired by him and his commercial and tariff thieves. He advised
the Georgian to go home and speak to the people upon the subject of
reconstruction. He was told that he would be hung if he attempted such a
thing. Lincoln remarked, then talk to people privately, and if that
won’t do, then pray for reconstruction.
the first bombardment of Fort Fisher, a shell whistled close by Gen.
Whiting, exploded, and covered him all over with wet sand. He did not
move even, did not take his pipe from his mouth, and only remarked
coolly, “Well, it spattered me.”
Raleigh Progress of the 21st
says it learns from Savannah refugees that Sherman is in motion with an
army of 80,000 effective men. Wonder if that
refugee may not be an emissary sent in advance to try to spread alarm.
(Monday) will be presented at the Theater “The Lady of the Lake” and
“Scenes in India,” two of the most beautiful and thrilling plays
ever produced upon the stage, and cannot fail to draw a crowded
advise all who intend going, to go early, if they would secure good
seats. It is seldom two such rare pieces are presented on the same
evening, and we doubt not that there will be a perfect jam.
were received in Augusta on the 24th announcing that our troops had
successfully repulsed the enemy in their advance upon Wilmington. The
Yankees were, it is said, severely punished.
received no papers direct from Wilmington this morning, but clip the
following from the Raleigh Confederate
of the 21st:
Carolinian of the 19th, says
Major Venable carried a flag of truce within the enemy’s lines on
yesterday, returned last night. The details are meagre, as the officer
in charge could obtain very little information from the enemy. We are
happy to learn, however, that Gen. Whiting and Col. Lamb are doing well.
slaughter in the fort was immense. The killed and wounded, we are
informed, will reach five or six hundred.
large number of letters was received, which will immediately be
forwarded by our prompt and efficient Post Master, to their respective
destinations. May God comfort the bereaved, who will never receive
letters from loved and familiar hands.
More Recognition Rumors.
EXCITEMENT IN MEMPHIS!
Jan. 27.–Maj. Gen. Forrest’s scouts from Orizaba report that great
excitement prevails in Memphis on account of recognition rumors. It is
reported that the English Premier has notified Lincoln that he would
recognize him after the 4th of March as President only of the States
which had voted for him. The English government, it is reported here,
has ordered the seizure of all the American vessels at Nassau.
true object of Blair’s visit, the Richmond Examiner
believes, was beyond question to fail in a pretended overture for
“peace and Union,” and thus to give a stimulus to the draft for
three hundred thousand new thieves and murders, to be let loose upon us
next spring. He could easily, in the confidence of private discourse,
get from the President a fresh avowal that the South is really fighting
for independence and nothing else; a statement which, though t has been
repeated so often as to be almost monotonous, yet always seems fresh and
surprising to the Northern mind. Every time they learn, on the authority
of a Yankee who heard the thing actually said with his own two ears, it
is a matter of new amazement and indignation to them; and they set
about, with more zeal than ever, fitting out armadas and gathering fresh
this belief was expressed before the second visit of Blair, who, so far
as we are informed, is still in Richmond. His prolonged stay would seem
to give strength to the general hope that peace negotiations are really
on foot. On the other hand, however, let us not forget that the
preparations of the enemy for a vigorous prosecution of the war go on
unceasingly, and must be met by corresponding vigor and determination on our part.
has been no change of importance since last report. The only firing
heard was two shots in the direction of Stono. Some considerable
activity was observed among the small boats of the fleet. There was also
a good deal of signaling in the fleet. No additional increase of vessels
is reported.–Courier, 24th.
JANUARY 31, 1865
SPRINGFIELD REPUBLICAN (MA)
of Fuel and Light.
is great scarcity of wood and coal at Washington. On Saturday the gas
company had only 100 tons of coal, and the treasury department was
notified that gas could not be furnished them after Monday. Secretary
Stanton was visited by treasury officers and urged to encourage as much
as possible the movement of coal over the Baltimore and Ohio railroad,
representing that if the gas should be cut off in the treasury building,
the supply of money and the printing of government securities would be
cut off, as the light was indispensable in the printing bureau.
and Peace Rumors.–The
Tribune of Monday has an
emphatic, double-leaded leader, saying that it has found a clue to the
reported recognition intrigue. It is that Jeff Davis sent Bishop Lynch
of South Carolina abroad, some time ago, and the bishop has convinced
the Catholic powers that the expansion and predominance of the church on
this continent will be assured by the triumph of the confederates;
whereupon said powers have formed secret
league, pledged to recognize the confederacy after the 4th of March. The
story has this advantage: it can never be proved false; the league is
secret, and after the 4th of March covers the whole indefinite future.
The Tribune also declares it
“nearly certain” that the rebels rejected Mr. Blair’s peace
overtures because of this promise of Catholic intervention; also, that
the rebels mean to burn Richmond, so as to show Christendom that they
prefer extermination to subjugation. Another Tribune
report is that two members of the House at Washington, who dined with
Mr. Blair since his return from Richmond, say that Mr. Blair told them
that “Jeff Davis entreated him to effect the passage of the
constitutional amendment abolishing slavery; that he confessed that the
war had uprooted and destroyed slavery; that it had induced disunion,
and that the hope of being able to yet save slavery and re-enthrone it
was the only obstacle to peace and the restoration of the Union.” Jeff
Davis advocating the anti-slavery amendment–well, that is something
worth telling, if true. The only additional marvel on this fruitful
theme, in Monday’s New York papers, is one of the Herald’s coinage, to the effect that Jeff Davis and his associates
admit that they will be obliged to submit, and that they are anxious to
make terms, but none of them dare to take the responsibility. They had
better combine and divide around it.
Richmond Sentinel, Davis’s
paper, gives a version of Mr. Blair’s peace negotiations more likely
to be correct than anything printed in our own papers:
laying before our authorities, informally, of course, the wishes of the
federal government, the interpretation of which is peace on a
subjugation basis, and finding that these modest desires were not likely
to be complied with, he came down pointedly to a proposition of reunion
upon any terms, and desired to know upon what terms the South would
agree to return to the sheltering ægis of the old flag. He suggested
the Union as it was, the Negro as he is, and the South as it used to be.
He suggested also that the North would foot the bill and taxes for all
the Negroes stolen and property destroyed by the armies and emissaries
of federal usurpation. ->
course he made all of these suggestions on his own responsibility; but,
whether deemed authoritative or not, he received not the slightest
encouragement to hope for reunion, and was made to understand that the
South was fighting for independence, and independence only. He then
inquired whether, if the independence of the South were recognized by
the federal government, the South would make common cause with the
North, and drive the French from Mexico. The response understood to have
been given to this diplomatic feeler was: ‘Make the proposition
formally and officially, and you will get a reply.’ ”
Blair made the final suggestion mentioned, he may have done the country
irreparable mischief. Notwithstanding all the avowals, it will be
understood abroad that he went to Richmond charged with the views of our
government, or at least fully informed of them. What is more likely to
provoke the immediate recognition of the confederacy by France, and
indeed active support to its cause, than an attempt to secure re-union
on the basis of hostility to Napoleon’s Mexico scheme? We expected no
good from Mr. Blair’s diplomacy; we trust he has committed no such
dangerous blunder as the Sentinel
Richard Montgomery, an engineer at New York, proposes to build a
railroad upon pillars of corrugated iron to run along both sides of
Broadway at the height of the second floors of the best class of stores.
He claims that such a road would cost less than a million dollars, and
could be completed in three months, without, during that time or
afterwards, interfering with travel on the street. One feature would
recommend this plan to New Yorkers, who pay such enormous rents. He
suggests that the road shall be connected, at the street corners, with a
walk or second-story pavement to be run along the entire front of
Broadway by private enterprise; and thus there would be created a double
tier of shops, where now only a single tier exists as a rule.
New York Tribune states
editorially that Gen. Sherman designed to organize the emancipated
slaves, on his march through Georgia, for soldiers, but the war
department refused to send with him an officer who has had experience in
recruiting blacks; and although private individuals were ready to assume
a part, if not the whole expense, the war department did not respond.
Gen. Sherman is blamed for isolating the freed men in his department, as
thereby giving implied sanction to the prejudice against color; but he
is praised at Gen. Banks’ expense for giving land to the Negroes
instead of establishing a paid labor system. The fact that the owners of
the Louisiana lands still hold them and remain upon them, while the
South Carolinians have abandoned theirs, is wholly ignored in order to
make out a comparison unfavorable to Gen. Banks. There were no lands in
Louisiana that Gen. Banks could parcel out among the Negroes.
FEBRUARY 1, 1865
of the great evils of the day, and which has been since the fall of
Adam, is the system of puffing up men and women, and presenting them to
the community as great and worthy and of vast proportions. This system
has led to difficulties and disasters both to the public and to the
individual puffed. How often do we see in the newspapers this and that
man set up as a model of patriotism, greatness, morality and virtue.
Everything they say or do is duly chronicled and put before the world in
large capitals as the greatest effort of the times, and worthy a niche
in the temple of fame, higher and more exalted than any ever occupied by
a Pitt, a Burke, or a Sheridan. All of their speeches are reported in
full and they give the key-note to their friends and partisans. But in
process of time these men change their opinions and become the advocates
of doctrines directly opposed to those of which they were once the
champions. Then comes the denunciation of their former friends and
admirers–who are now changed from fawning satellites to vindictive
enemies–and the the individual who was at one time little less than an
angel is now a dirty beast, and of no account. How mortifying to take
back all that has been said in his favor, and say to the people that the
hero worshipped was an imposter and a cheat. Did the papers who have
puffed the individual into notice know before this? If so, why this
extravagant puffing? Is it not true that all men are more or less
selfish and that public men are supremely ungrateful and negligent of
friends? Do they not become intensely large in their own estimation and
put on airs to an alarming degree? Do they not attribute their success
in life to their own superior attainments, forgetting the friends who
have sustained them and carried them upward in the line of promotion? Do
they not then turn upon the publisher of the newspaper whose brains and
whose pen have made them all they are, and become his worst enemy
because the publisher refuses to go all lengths with the puffed
individuals in their erratic course? Publishers of newspapers have a
great duty to perform to the public. They should stop the wholesale
puffing of party favorites and treat them as they deserve to be treated
and no better. So long as public men are honest, say so. When they cease
to be honest, let the public know. There is no other safe course to
pursue if a newspaper desires to retain the confidence of the public.
Sherman’s Movement into South Carolina Delayed by Heavy Rains.–Since
the date of my last letter announcing the departure of Gen. Sherman’s
army from Savannah on its new campaign a heavy rain has set in, which in
this country, and at this season of the year, is apt to render the roads
useless for travel for several weeks.
of the Twentieth and Fifteenth Corps having crossed the river and
venture upon the ten mile corduroy road, which had been constructed over
the swamps, were involved in the treacherous soil and forced to retrace
their steps, leaving some of their transportation, for the water to
subside. Some of the troops found progression or retreat alike
impossible, and making a virtue of necessity, encamped themselves upon
isolated patches of high ground to await the pleasure of the elements.
who had been ten miles in the interior of South Carolina, returned last
night reporting the country covered with water and impassable for either
men or wagons. The roads are submerged–their direction indicated only
by the fringe of trees and bushes on either side.
is rumored that Gen. Sherman, in view of these difficulties, will move
such portions of the army as remain, by a road where the soil on the
Carolina side is firmer and more elevated. The rain will unavoidably
delay the movement a few days, if not a week.
Soldiers Slaughtered by a Guerrilla Band.–A
wholesale slaughter of Negro soldiers who were driving cattle near
Simpsonville, Ky., is noticed by the Louisville Journal,
more than half a mile this side of the village a terrible scene was
presented to view. The ground was stained with blood, and the dead
bodies of Negro soldiers were stretched out along the road. It was
evident that the guerrillas had dashed upon the party guarding the rear
of the cattle and taken them completely by surprise. They could not have
offered any serious resistance, as none of the outlaws were even
wounded. It is presumed that the Negroes surrendered and were shot down
in cold blood, as but two of the entire number escaped–one of them by
secreting himself behind a wagon, the other by running, as he was met
several miles from the scene of tragedy, wounded and nearly exhausted.
Thirty-five dead bodies were counted lying in the road and vicinity. The
outlaws were but fifteen in number–one of them a black scoundrel, who
boasted on the return of the band to Simpsonville that he killed three
of the soldiers.
Caught by a Yankee Trick.–A
“mean Yankee trick” was played on the rebels a few days since in the
front of our lines near Petersburg. With a view of relieving the tedium
of their life in the mud and rain, some of the pickets of the 2d Corps
procured a few fat cattle, as the most tempting baits which they could
offer to Southern appetites, and, placing them upon the outer line, hid
themselves in ambush and waited patiently the result. As was
anticipated, no sooner were the beeves heard to low than the rebel
pickets, crouching in the underbrush, stole cautiously towards them.
They were getting along very successfully, they thought, and had almost
reached the objects of their hopes, when, to their dismay, they heard a
laugh and a “hurrah” in their rear, and turned to find themselves
cut off from the main body of their army, and prisoners. About a hundred
of these seekers after beef were thus made game of and captured by the
most noteworthy event of the past week is perhaps the attempt of the
rebel iron-clads and gun-boats that have a long time been lying in the
James river at Richmond, to pass down by our batteries, through the
obstructions placed in the water, and to destroy our transports and
immense government stores at City Point. This rebel fleet consisted of
the following vessels: the Virginia,
the Fredericksburg, and the Richmond,
strong armored vessels of four guns each; the Drury, the Nansemond, and
the Hampton, wooden gunboats
of two guns each; the Buford,
one gun; Torpedo, dispatch
boat, and three torpedo boats. They left their moorings near Drury’s
Bluff at about 6 o’clock, Monday evening, January 23d, and proceeded
down the river. The night was dark and the river high, circumstances
highly favorable to the enemy’s project. They proceeded quietly along
till they neared our batteries, when they were discovered, and
immediately our batteries opened on them, to which they replied. At
about 12 o’clock they succeeded in cutting the chain in front of our
obstructions beyond the lower end of Dutch Gap canal, where the Fredericksburg,
under full head of steam passed thro’ the obstructions, completely
demolishing one of the sunken canal boats. The Richmond,
Virginia, and Drury, in attempting to follow, grounded, when the Fredericksburg
had to go to their assistance. The Drury
could not be gotten off and had to be abandoned, as it was then daylight
and they were within range of battery Parsons.
soon as it became light the battery opened on the Drury,
one of the shells falling in her magazine, when she exploded, completely
demolishing her. The remainder of the fleet quickly made their way back
up the river. The only damage done to us was the dismounting of one gun
on fort Brady. Deserters report that only one man was killed and two
wounded by the explosion of the Drury.
and Sherman Reinforced.
Schofield, it is reported, has been transferred with his corps from
Tennessee to the Atlantic coast; also Gen. Meagher with his division
from Chattanooga, so that 20,000 men are probably added to the forces
closing up the campaign toward Richmond. With these fruits in view well
may Lee, Davis and Co. at Richmond, look out for their safety, and no
wonder the Richmond Sentinel, in a recent editorial, exclaims:
has almost run its sands and spring approaches. The war which farther
south has shown no pause will soon wake again in Virginia. Grant is
gathering his forces around us; his own army is entrenched near at hand.
Sheridan is in the valley; Thomas is in Tennessee; Sherman is menacing
our southern connections, with his face hitherward. All the signs
indicate an early combined and vigorous movement up our great line of
railway and upon the capita of our country. These months of winter are
precious months of preparation. Two of them are gone; one of them
remains. Has our work been accomplished? Have our plans been formed?
Have our measures been taken? Has our policy been agreed upon? Has our
army been reorganized? Has it been strengthened? Alas for the answers
that truth requires. Alas that the time of preparation is ending before
preparation is commenced. We entreat Congress to wake up.”
the formidable chain of forts about Fort Fisher, including Fort Caswell,
has fallen into our hands, having been blown up and abandoned by the
rebels. Wilmington, therefore, although not captured at latest advices,
is most thoroughly closed against rebel blockade running, and the last
breathing hole of the confederacy stopped. Admiral Porter reports the
whole number of guns taken to be 168. Admiral Porter also says: “in
each fort I found an Armstrong gun with ‘Broad Arrow’ on it, and the
name of Sir William Armstrong, marked in full on the trunnions. As the
British government claims the exclusive right to use these guns, it
would be interesting to know how they came into forts held by Southern
rebels. I find that immense quantities of provisions, stores and
clothing have come through this port into rebeldom. It is all English,
and they have received the last cargo. No more will ever come this way.
We picked up a telegram from Lee to his subordinate here, saying if
Forts Fisher and Caswell were not held, he would have to evacuate
Gwin’s Dukedom in Mexico.
A Place of Refuge for Rebels.
report that ex-Senator Gwin of California had been made governor of the
northern states of Mexico was supposed to be a canard. It turns out to be a
matter of fact. The Emperor Maximilian has conveyed to Napoleon, as security
for the payment of French claims, the states of Sonora, Lower California,
and the whole tier of states on the other side of our lines. Dr. Gwin has
received the title of duke, and is made the governor general of this new
French province. Dr. Gwin has full power to dispose of the public lands and
monies, has framed a code of laws, and will at once set about procuring
emigrants to his new realm from this country, and especially the rebel
states. Napoleon guarantees full military protection, and liberal terms will
be offered to settlers. Dr. Gwin has two agents at San Francisco, Major J.
C. Ridges and Mr. Herly, to organize emigration to the new country, some
parts of which are rich in undeveloped mineral resources.
this scheme is in some way connected with the Davis rebellion is indicated
by several facts. There have been repeated intimations that Kirby Smith, the
rebel commander beyond the Mississippi, intends to go to Mexico with his
army and join Maximilian, and that he has sent a great deal of cotton
thither on his own private account. It is hinted that he has given Napoleon
or Maximilian assurances that Texas shall eventually be re-annexed to
Mexico. Late accounts from New Orleans mention that many old business men of
secesh inclinations are emigrating to Matamoras.
This has a look in the same direction. And in harmony with this scheme of
opening northern Mexico as a refuge for our defeated traitors, we have a
report from Washington that one of the schemes of settlement suggested to
Mr. Blair by a member of Davis’s cabinet on his first visit to Richmond
the event of our (rebel) government deciding to treat for terms and give up
the contest, will the United States government forego emancipation,
confiscation, &c., and permit us to dispose of our cotton, then leave
the country for Mexico, with the express understanding that no obstacle
shall be placed in the way of private soldiers in the southern army
at least who may desire to follow the leaders into that country? If
that will be consented to, they will bind themselves to drive the French
under Maximilian out of Mexico, secure the full control of the government
there, and, if necessary, pledge its ultimate annexation to the United
differs from the other account, which supposes alliance with Maximilian
instead of war upon him. Union with Maximilian is the most probable
intention, and the establishment of a government hostile to the United
States. All this is conjectured, however, for the present. What is true is
that the northern tier of Mexican states has been handed over to France, and
that Dr. Gwin, a friend of the rebel leaders and the rebellion, is made
governor of the new province. Nothing is more natural than that the rebel
leaders should look to that country as a place of refuge after their final
defeat here, and it is reasonable to suppose that the whole scheme was
gotten up for that purpose. If Davis or the other leaders can take forty or
fifty thousand soldiers with them into Mexico, they may hope to found a
state there which they can rule, and this will be preferable to death or
or four vessels have arrived at Savannah, heavily laden with provisions for
the suffering poor, and the city authorities and the citizens express their
gratitude warmly and unmistakenly to their Northern benefactors.
Enemy at Bay.
thrilling series of victories which have crowned our banners during the
last month, and the splendid promise of the month to come, make the
prospects of the Union cause altogether brighter at this moment than at
any previous period in the history of the war. Neither after Fort
Donelson and Roanoke Island in February, 1862, nor after Island No. 10
and New Orleans in April of the same year, nor after Gettysburg,
Vicksburg and Port Hudson in July, 1863, nor after Chattanooga, nor yet
after Atlanta, even, did the cause of the enemy appear so desperate as
it does now. We express the conviction that, if our arms are managed in
the future with the skill, vigor and prudence that have lately gained,
under our three great generals, the three great victories of Nashville,
Savannah and Fort Fisher, this year of grace 1865 will make the
overthrow of the rebellion a certainty, and the difficult work of that
overthrow will be substantially accomplished.
the cause of the rebellion shall be the most desperate, we must look for
its most desperate and unexpected struggles. The enemy may yet have
unexpended shafts in his quiver. Suppose, for a single example, nerved
by a consciousness that his cause was lost, he should sake all his
fortunes on a final invasion of the North. We must suppose he would
abandon Richmond and Petersburg, leaving only a strong picket line f a
few thousand men around the latter city to blind his purposes. These he
would sacrifice. Then suppose he should collect all available troops
from North Carolina and Virginia, from the commands of Bragg and
Beauregard, as well as from his own outposts. He would reduce and
mobilize these to a compact,
formidable column. Then, stealing away from Richmond, he might get
several days the start of our troops before his movement was discovered.
In our present position, all the region immediately north and west of
Richmond is known to him. He could march out from the “back door” of
the city, so to speak, transport his troops to Lynchburg, or by the
Virginia Central railroad to Gordonsville, and be in Northern Virginia
before we had pierced his picket lines and found him vanished. Should he
be able to penetrate the Shenandoah Valley, he would overwhelm our
troops there as they have been more than once overwhelmed in similar
circumstances. Then, Maryland and Pennsylvania, Baltimore and
Washington, might feel the weight of his desperate stroke. Meanwhile,
Grant would doubtless be summoned in hot haste to the capital, leaving
behind perhaps only enough troops to take and hold Petersburg and
Richmond. Or, suppose Lee should turn into the Kanawha Valley from
Lynchburg. What would stop his course to Wheeling or Pittsburg? Columbus
and Cincinnati could be reached by him, and Ohio and Kentucky might be
devastated, his raiding columns forcing their way in different
said that 50,000 men, ably led, could push through any cordon. 50,000
men, ably led, need never be forced even to fight a great battle, if
they choose only to move and to retreat in such a country as ours. Such
an invasion of the North would not contemplate a great battle, except
when veteran troops are opposed to emergency men, militia, or one
hundred days’ men, who would be called to meet it. It would not be
over-nice about the rules of civilized warfare, but would plunder and
burn every-where, leaving desolation, and flaming towns and cities in
its trail. ->
would be forced to keep constantly in motion, to strike points where it
could supply itself with provisions; and if driven to expend its
ammunition in battle, it must aim also on points to where ammunition
could be obtained. But its design would be a terrific swoop only, for
the question of supplies of forage, food and ammunition would not permit
a deliberate campaign.
that theory of “dying in the last ditch” is not idle talk, however,
the Waterloo of the war may yet, possibly, be fought on Northern soil.
Perhaps a more plausible supposition may be that the rebel leaders, when
all is over, will strive, rather than submitting to be hemmed in at
Richmond, to make their way with faithful adherents to some quarter
where, in a smaller region, and with such advantages of country as may
be had, they may commence a long struggle before extirpation, striving,
while their own lives last, at least, to play a stalemate upon us in
this gigantic game of war.–Army and Navy Journal.
“Strike the Loud Timbrel!”
amendment to the Constitution, prohibiting slavery in the United States
forever, has passed both houses of Congress. The bill is to be signed by
the President, and ratified by three-fourths of the Legislatures of the
several States, and then it will be a part of our Constitution. Let the
people shout and make a glad noise, for the redemption of our Country is
at hand! The following article tells the whole story:
1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude except as a punishment for
a crime, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist
within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.
2. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate
amendment passed by six more than the two-thirds required, several
democratic members voting for it. All honor to them.
When the War Will End.
from Savannah the 22d state that a great reaction was taking place in
the minds of the people in the interior of Georgia. They now openly
confess that the attempt to establish a Southern Confederacy is a
failure. On the question of an immediate return to the Union, the people
are undivided. Gen. Sherman finds that the people have a hearth hatred
of the people of South Carolina. Gen. Sherman was to leave Savannah on
the 22d to join his army. He says if the people of the North will
provide men and money to carry on the war for four more years, it will
not last four months longer, but if they fail to do so, there is no
telling how long it will last.
FEBRUARY 4, 1865
beat the world. They beat, says the Hartford Times,
John Law’s scheme, and overtop the South Sea bubble. Since the oil
business has become a reality and a value to the country, oil companies
spring up in a night, and a hundred of them grow in a week. Once of them
has a capital of five millions of dollars–others, more modest, range
from two hundred thousand to a million.
way it is often done is as follows: A tract of land is leased for
twenty-five years, more or less, a royalty being paid to the owner for
every barrel of oil procured from it. Wells are sunk, and if oil is not
found, a few barrels are put in the holes in the ground. Sometimes
indications of oil are struck. Then a company is formed–capital
$250,000, and the shares are sold in the market. The parties taking a
lease of the land may have expended $5,000–sometimes not over
$500–and they pocket $250,000. In this
way great fortunes are made, and they are too often made, for the public
good. In a good number of cases, valuable oil wells have been found, and
large quantities of oil are procured. This gives life to the bogus
companies, and the business of creating petroleum companies is brisk.
The capital of all the oil companies now in existence is not less than
three hundred and fifty millions of dollars; whilst ten or twenty
millions would be amply sufficient to work all the wells that are good
for anything, and probably two millions would do it all. So it is
evident that whilst a few may make great fortunes, a good many who
invest will lose their money. Those who make the most money are those
parties who lease lands, or purchase 100 acres at $5 an acre, and then
form companies, each with a capital of $200,000 or more, and pocket the
About Hard Tack.–“Hard
tack,” or army biscuit, has risen, in ordinary American parlance, to
the dignity of an institution–that is to say, it is talked about, and
has been joke dover, to a degree which would fill many a volume like
this, were all the Hard Tackiana collected. Perhaps the best unspoken
pun–one devised by no human brain, but strangely molded by nature or
chance–one presented itself to me under this popular name for military
bread. On breaking open specimen
of the article, I found a large iron tack, which had been baked in by
accident, and was, I need not say, several degrees harder even than the
tack in which it was embedded.
tack in question is always packed in square wooden boxes–generally
bearing date, as well as a
brand of the make or baker; anent which the following is told:
day a lot of boxes of peculiarly hard crackers arrived at the camp of
the Fifth Excelsior. Several of the boys were wondering at the meaning
of the brand upon the boxes, which was as follows: “B. C. 603.”
interpretations were given, but all were rejected, until one individual
declared it was all plain enough. It couldn’t be misunderstood.
how so?” was the query.
he replied, “that is the date when the crackers were made–six
hundred and three years before Christ–603 B. C.”–U.
S. Service Mag. ->
find the following significant article in the New York Tribune
of to-day. We give it as we find it, and the reader must draw his own
have at length obtained a clue to the European complot wherefrom the
Slave-holding rebels are comforting themselves with hopes of powerful
and speedy aid to their sinking cause. Its outline is as follows:
an early stage of our great struggle, Bishop Lynch (Roman Catholic) of
Charleston, S. C., was dispatched by Jefferson Davis to Europe with a
broad commission to search for sympathizers and allies, but with
instructions to make Rome the focus of his operations. The Bishop has
remained in Europe ever since, and has been zealously devoting himself
to his important political duties. It was not difficult for him to
convince the master-spirits of European Reaction and Absolutism that the
Slaveholders’ Rebellion was identical in spirit and purpose with their
own cause, and enlist their sympathies thereupon; but Bishop Lynch has
gone further, and (whether with or without express warrant) assured the
magnates of the Roman Catholic Church that its expansion and
predominance, first in the Confederacy, ultimately throughout this
hemisphere, will be assured by the triumph of the Confederacy.
deference to these representations, a secret league of Roman Catholic
Powers–France, Spain and Austria–under the guidance and with the
express concurrence of the Pope, has, it is said, been formed, pledged
to recognize the Confederacy on or immediately after the 4th of March
next, under the pretext that the Union will thereafter consist of those
States only which participated in the late Presidential election, and in
the choice of members of the approaching Congress.
is added that the league contemplates other than moral support to the
slaveholding rebels, but not (we judge) at the outset. It is just
possible that the withdrawal of Spain from her luckless adventure in San
Domingo has some connection with this new undertaking.
give this story as it reaches us, without assuming that it has other
foundation than the sanguine hopes of the rebels and their European
friends. That they expect some such interposition has incited them to
repel the advances made to them through Mr. Blair, is nearly certain. We
further learn that they are anticipating a fresh and earnest attempt to
dispossess them of Richmond, and that in case of its success, they
intend to burn the city to its foundations, so as to leave it a witness
to Christendom of their resolution to be exterminated rather than
subjugated. But the total destruction of a large city is more easily
decreed than effected.
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