FEBRUARY 2, 1862

England Cooled Down.

We never were much more deeply impressed with the idea that England, beyond making an abrupt splatter about the Trent affair, would care to press fastidiously the matter.  The recent news, consequently, of the calming down of her effervescence and complete satisfaction with the delivery of Mason and Slidell, sans apology or regret, causes us neither astonishment nor surprise. Palmerston in this as in almost every other act of his political career since he reached prominence, has played, like the harlequin, buffoon, and mountebank that he is, the part assigned him in this mock heroic piece in his customary style, and will, with the self-satisfied, arrogant and important air he knows so well how to assume, meet Parliament next week, conscious of the boisterous applause  of every tenacious adherent of the treasury benches, every dependent upon office. In vain will the Tory party attack his American policy, as foreshadowed by the Herald and other Derby journals; impotently will they urge the commercial derangements, the manufacturing in distress, the monetary uneasiness as justifying British interference to raise our blockade and British recognition of our independence; Pam, strong in his recent characteristic coup, will fall back upon his foregone conclusions, and maintain its as alike the duty and policy of Britain, to stay an aloof and determined neutral in this most unnatural war in America.  No man better than Pam knows that the demand of his government for the delivery of Mason and Slidell had neither the sanction of British precedent nor British law, but knowing it would be made in accordance with the universal sentiment of continental Europe, which would hail it as an important surrender of British pretensions over neutral commerce on the high seas and support it as such, it occurred to him that he might assume the braggart with impunity, and all the more so, while knowing that the link and government when the pressure came would incontinently collapse.  He played his brag game with his customary astuteness, and, as we have already said, will come down to Parliament strengthened in his purpose to limit no helping hand, directly or indirectly, to the cause of the Confederate States.  If the habitual unbelievers in our opinions shake their wise heads doubtfully or incredulously, at these opinions, let them just look to those unerring barometers, the consol and cotton markets, and be disabused.  Both have advanced, and well they may, since Seward is so confident of the pacific intentions of the Palmerstonians as to offer them unimpeded transit for their troops from Portland to Quebec, rather than that they should risk them, at this late season in the tempestuous waters of the Gulf of St. Lawrence.  France, Austria, Prussia, Russia, and Denmark and Sweden naturally and pertinently united their complaints against the capture of Mason in Slidell, upon a neutral trading vessel on a voyage between neutral ports; and in strict conformity to a policy previously always approved by the United States themselves in conjunction with them, demanded their enlargement, thus cornering the Lincoln government, as Pam unquestionably anticipated, and giving to him the very éclat he above all things desired as indispensable to enable him to maintain against the most powerful protests of home interests of great magnitude, the neutral position immovably upon which, as the implacable foe of both sections of this late united country, he had determined to stand.

From the first, we raised our humble voice against the delusion--not yet dispelled--that in the Russell-Palmerston government these States had any thing to expect or hope saved disappointment, mortification and humiliation.  Not that they hate us any more intensely than made do Lincolndom, or perhaps so much so; but the opportunity they had so long desired and sought of reducing both to powerless dimensions having, as they believed, at length come, we felt there was no mode of propitiating their good offices short of an abasement to which no people possessed of pride, spirit and manhood could descend.  It was because this result stood in all its discouraging proportions before us, that we opposed the sending of roving commissioners to Europe to lounge about the avenues to St. James' and the Tulleries, seeking for admittance; and instead, as comporting better with our dignity, our strength and our importance, advocated such enlightened legislation on trade as would have created, fostered and maintained in every portion of Europe a powerful public sentiment in our favor. Our views were condemned, the supplicatory system prevailed, and now what is the complexion of our foreign relations? Have England and France wavered in the policy they had already determined upon? Have Russell and Thouvenal vouchsafed to extend an official recognition of the most ceremonious

welcome to our envoys? Have we, in a word, a single circumstance connected with European governments to refer to indicative of a friendly feeling towards us, or inspiring the faintest hope of a disposition to interpose in any manner in our behalf? If the answer to these questions be such as we should expect from a candid and intelligent public, can it be necessary for us, for the thousandth time, to discountenance and to call upon the people to denounce the senseless and dangerous folly of looking to foreign nations either to raise the blockade or otherwise to interpose in our quarrel for our benefit? If the people had from the first repelled the counsel of the timid or the traitorous who dampened the ardor of the country by eternal prophecies of coming assistance from abroad, we should now have had in sufficient force gunboats in number more than sufficient to have kept our harbors open and our navigation free to every flag; but then, as now, they hearkened to those who have persistently deluded us and cried peace, peace, when there is no peace. There is nothing desperate or even critical in our position if the right men are in the right places; if corruption, dishonesty and incapacity prevail not in our councils; if cowardice, disloyalty and drunkenness have not the command of our armies; therefore, once again we implore the people to look inward alone, and rely upon themselves to win or lose the great conflict upon which their all is staked.


Re-enlistments.--The following article on the subject of re-enlistments we copy from the Nashville Union:

It behooves the people of the Confederate States to give their earnest and united attention to the absolute necessity of having in the field, at an early eight, volunteers enough to fill the ranks which will be made vacant by the expiration of the terms of service of the twelve months' volunteers, who shall not re-enlist.  We have heard the most encouraging accounts of the temper of the volunteers with regard to re-enlistment.  At many points 75 per cent. will again offer their services to their country.  But in the very nature of things there are some who are compelled to look after their families and their interests.  The places of these must be supplied in time for their departure from the army.  The Northern government are looking to the contingency of a failure on the part of our people, patriotically to respond to the call of their country, in this crisis of the war, with the deepest interest.  They have placed their last hope of successfully subjugating the South upon a possible failure in this regard.  Their immense armies are ready to swoop upon our lines, as soon as they discover them weakened by the discharge of any considerable portion of our forces, without a corresponding strengthening of them by recruits.  If we fail in bringing up these new levies, we have lost all the advantages we have gained in the last campaign.  If we succeed in rallying around our standard the brave reserves of our people, and at its the critical time when they are most needed, we have so far discouraged the enemy as to crush his last hope of breaking our lines and carrying out his nefarious designs.  We shall also convince foreign governments that all revolution is not a mere ebullition of passion, but that we are determined patiently and persistently to adhere to our cause until it shall be crowned with final success.

It is not of any avail that we waste time in discussing how these reserves are to be brought up; what number is to be thrown into the field, and how long they are to enlist for.  They must be raised.  It is a necessity that knows no hesitation or faltering.  The people commenced this revolution, after mature deliberation.  They have pledged all they hold a dear on its success.  They will not wait for any inducements of the government to encourage their patriotism.  They only have to know that the necessity requires them to come forward.  They are all individually concerned in the cause as deeply as the highest officer of the government.  Upon their patriotic hearts must rest the prosecution of a revolution in which they have engaged with heart, soul and body.  Let them prepare now, at the very turning point of the revolution, to bring up the reserves to the support of the cause.


The Meaning of the Words "Davis" and "Lincoln."--The Rev. Dr. Moore, of Richmond, delivered a lecture in that city on the evening of the 24th, on the origin and meaning of words, in which many curious facts were developed, among which were that the word Davis means "God with us," and that Lincoln when subjected to etymological analysis, means it "on the verge of a precipice."  So says the Richmond correspondent of the Charleston Mercury.1

, 1862

Permission for British Troops
to Pass Through Maine

The President of the Maine Senate, on Tuesday last, laid the following before the Senate relative to transit of British troops across the territory of Maine:

To the Senate

I herewith transmit to the Senate a copy of a letter received by me from the Honorable Wm. H. Seward, Secretary of State of the United States, containing his answers to the inquiries . . . whether permission had been given for the passage of British troops across the State of Maine, and if there had been, for any information concerning the fact which he might think proper to communicate.

Israel Washburn, Jr.

Executive Department, Jan. 21, 1862.

Department of State
Washington, 17th January, 1862.

To His Excellency, Israel Washburn, Jr., Governor of the State of Maine:

. . . On the 4th day of January instant, this department was advised, by a telegraphic dispatch from Portland, . . . that the steamship Bohemian, due there on the 7th instant, was telegraphed off Cape Race, with troops for Canada; and inquiring whether, in case they came to Portland, any different course was to be taken that what was heretofore pursued, and asking instructions in that contingency, by telegraph.

Upon this information I replied by telegraph, . . . The immediate grounds for this proceeding were, that it was supposed that a passage of the troops and munitions named, across the territory of the United States, by the Grand Trunk Railway, would save the persons concerned, from risk and suffering, which might be feared if they were left to make their way, in an inclement season, through the ice and snow of a northerly Canadian voyage.

The principle upon which this concession was made to Great Britain is that, when humanity, or even convenience, renders it desirable  for one nation to have a passage for its troops and munitions through the territory of another, it is a customer act of comity to grant it, if it can be done consistently with its own safety and welfare. It is on this principle that the United States continually enjoy the right of passage of troops upon the Panama railroad, across the territories of the Republic of New Grenada. . . .

In withholding this customary comity from Great Britain in the present case, the Government must necessarily act upon either a conviction that the passage of the troops and munitions through our territory would be injurious or hazardous to the public safety and welfare, or else it must capriciously refuse to that power what would be granted cheerfully to any other, or refuse to grant Great Britain now what would have been cheerfully accorded at another time, and under some different circumstances.

No foreign nation inimical to Great Britain is likely to complain of the United States for extending such a comity to that power. If, therefore, there be any danger to be apprehended from it, it must come in the form of direct hostility on the part of the British Government, against the United States. The United States have not only studiously practiced the most perfect justice in their intercourse with Great Britain, but they have also cultivated on their part a spirit of friendship towards her as a kindred nation, bound by the peculiar ties of commerce. The Grand Trunk Railroad, a British highway extended through the territories of the United States to perhaps the finest seaport of our country, is a monument of their friendly disposition. The reciprocity treaty, favoring the productions of British North America, in the markets of the United States, is a similar monument of the same wise and benevolent policy.

I shall not affect ignorance of the fact that popular asperities have recently appeared in that portion of the British Empire, as well as in the British Islands, which have seemed to indicate a growing alienation of sentiment among portions of the British people. But the Government of Great Britain has, nevertheless, during all this time, held towards us its customary language of respect and friendship. This Government, practicing entire frankness, yields its full faith to these assurances of the Government of Great Britain. The popular asperities to which I have alluded, are believed to have had their origin in accidents and misapprehensions of a temporary character. While the policy of this Government 

has been to fortify its territories so as to be able to resist all foreign, as well as domestic, enemies, if such enemies must come, it has been equally careful at the same time to secure even greater strength, by showing itself consistent in all things, scrupulously just, and, if possible, magnanimous towards all other nations.

It was not supposed when the directions in question were given, that the State of Maine would feel herself aggrieved by them. At the same time, the Federal Government is fully sensible that in all its proceedings it owes to each of the States the most exact respect for [their] rights and interests. The State of Maine has been so eminently loyal and patriotic in the present emergency, that the president would not feel himself at liberty to wound any sensibility that she might feel upon the subject.

If, therefore, you shall advise me that the directions in question are likely to have that effect, they will be cheerfully modified.

I have the honor to be, with the highest consideration, Your Excellency’s obedient servant,

William H. Seward


Rebel Enlistments.—The importance of the facts as to the expiration of rebel enlistments at this time is very likely to be exaggerated, but it is unquestionably true, that the rebels have a large number of six months troops, whose time is now about up, and that they are thus threatened with the loss of a valuable part of their army.

The Virginia legislature is trying to provide for this case in that State, by endeavoring to devise means to induce the volunteers to enlist anew, or to keep them by force. The latter scheme, however, threatens to give much trouble. One plan now before the Virginia legislature is as follows--At the end of the time for which any company is enlisted, one-fourth of its men shall be selected for discharge, according to the wants of their families, and shall not be subject to military duty for eight months. The other three-fourths shall remain in service until January, 1863, and shall then be discharged, with a year’s exemption from service. This topic, we are assured by the Richmond papers, is “the absorbing topic of the camps.”


The marine disasters for January were very heavy, as might be expected, owing to the stormy weather and fearful gales that prevailed with so little interruption throughout the entire month. The list includes seventy-seven vessels, of which thirty-seven were foreign, principally British. The large number of foreign vessels lost is easily accounted for. The freaks of the privateers Sumter and Nashville, and the agitation of the war question with England, caused neutral flags to be in great demand for carrying grain to European ports, thus bringing into use many vessels that in times of peace could not get an American charter to cross the Atlantic. These vessels were caught in some of the terrible storms that prevailed, and as a natural consequence, many of the have been lost.


A southern agent writing from England to the Richmond Enquirer, describes many of the difficulties that he has encountered abroad. He tried to promote shipments of manufactures to the southern ports, with a promise of one hundred per cent. Profit, but the sturdy manufacturers said ten per cent. and no risk is a better business than one hundred per cent. and extreme risk. Nothing was accomplished. He adds that he has some doubts whether the foreign powers will recognize the Confederacy, and assigns the following reasons: 1st. Both England and France are strongly conservative, and both possess important colonial possessions, and they do not like to encourage revolts; 2d. A prevalent impression that the North and South would soon come together again if separated; 3d. A fear that, in case of recognition, the North would undertake the conquest of the South; 4th. The determination of England to rely hereafter upon her own sources of supply for cotton; and 5th. The determined anti-slavery feeling among the people of both nations. Some, or all of these cases united, he says, will long delay the much-hoped-for foreign intervention.


The confederate government has killed and packed in Tennessee no less than 200,000 hogs. From these hogs it will net about twenty-four millions of pounds of bacon.

, 1862

A Story for the Hard Times.

The other evening I came home with an extra ten dollar bill in my pocket—money that I had earned by out of doors work. The fact is, I’m a clerk in a down-town store, at a salary of six hundred dollars per annum, and a baby to support out of it.

I suppose this income will sound amazingly small to your two or three thousand dollar office-holders, but nevertheless we contrive to  live comfortably upon it. We live on one floor of an unpretending house, for which we pay one hundred and fifty dollars per annum, and Kitty, my wife, does all her own work; so that we lay up a neat sum every year. I’ve got a balance of two or three hundred dollars at the savings-bank, the hoard of several years, and it is astonishing how rich I feel! Why, Rothschild himself isn’t a circumstance to me!

Well, I came home with my extra bill, and showed it triumphantly to Kitty, who, of course, was delighted with my industry and thrift.

“Now, my love,” said I, “just add this to our account at the bank, to draw interest to the end of the year.”

Forthwith I commenced casting interest, and calculating in my brain. Kitty was silent, and rocked the cradle musingly at her feet.

“I’ve been thinking, Harry,” said she, after a moment’s pause, “that since you’ve got this extra money, we might afford to buy a new rug. This is getting dreadful shabby, my dear, as you must see.”

I looked dolefully at the rug; it was worn and shabby enough, that was a fact.

“I can get a beautiful new velvet pattern for seven dollars,” resumed my wife.

“Velvet—seven dollars,” groaned I.

“Well, then, a common tufted rug like this would cost only three,” said my cautious better-half, who, seeing she couldn’t carry her first ambitious point, wisely withdrew her guns.

“That’s more sensible,” said I. “Well, we’ll see about it.”

“And there’s another thing I want,” continued my wife, putting her hand coaxingly on my shoulder; “and it’s not at all extravagant.”

“What is it?” said I, softening rapidly.

“I saw such a lovely silk pattern on Canal street this morning, and I can get it for six dollars—only six dollars, Harry! It is the cheapest thing I ever saw.”

“But haven’t you got a very pretty green silk dress?”

“That old thing! Why, Harry, I’ve worn it ever since we’ve been married.”

“Is it soiled or ragged?”

No, of course; but who wants to wear the same green dress forever? Every one knows it is the only silk dress I have.”

“Well, what then?”

“That’s just a man’s question,” pouted Kitty, “and I suppose you have not observed how old-fashioned my bonnet is getting?”

“Why, I thought it looked very neat and tasteful, since you put on that black velvet winter trimming.”

“Of course, you men have no taste in such matters!”

We were silent for a moment. I’m afraid we both felt a little cross and out of humor with each other. In fact, on my journey home, I had entertained serious thought of exchanging my old silver watch for a more modern time-piece of gold, and ad mentally appropriated the ten dollars to further that purpose. Savings-bank reflections had come later. As we sat before the fire, each wrapped in thought, our neighbor, Mr. Wilmot, knocked at the door. He was employed in the same store as myself, and his wife was an old family friend.

“I want you to congratulate me,” he said, taking a seat. “I have purchased that little cottage on Bloomingdale road to-day.”

“What! that beautiful little wooden cottage, with piazza and lawn, and fruit-garden behind?” exclaimed Kitty, almost enviously.

“Is it possible?” I cried. A little cottage, home of my own, just like that I had often admired on the Bloomingdale road, had always been the crowning ambition of my life, a distant and almost hopeless point, but no less earnestly desired.

“Why, Wilmot,” said I, “how did this happen? You’ve only been in business eight or ten years longer than I, at a salary but a trifle larger than mine, yet I could as soon buy the mint as purchase a cottage like that.”

“Well,” said my neighbor, “we have been working to this end for years. My wife has darned, patched, mended, and saved; we have lived on very plain fare, and used the cheapest things. But the chief magic of the whole affair was that we laid aside every penny that was not needed by actual, positive want. Yes, I have seen my wife lay by red coppers, one b y one. Times are hard, you know, just now; the owner was not what you call an economical man, and he was glad to sell, even at a moderate price. So you see even these ‘hard times’ have helped me.”

When our neighbor was gone, Kitty and I looked meaningly at one another.

“Harry,” said she, “the rug isn’t so bad after all, and my green silk will do for a year longer, with care.”

“And a silver watch is quite as good for all practical purposes as a gold repeater,” said I. “We’ll lay aside all imaginary wants.”

“The ten dollar bill must go to the bank,” said Kitty, “and I’ll economize the coppers just as Mrs. Wilmot. Oh, how happy she will be among the roses in that cottage-garden next spring. “

Our merry tea-kettle sung us a cheerful little song over the glowing fire that night, and its burden was Economy and a home of our own amid the roses and the country air.


The recently-enacted law for the return of all letters to their owners, sent as dead or uncalled-for to the post-office department, is about to be put in operation. The postmaster-general claims that the revenue from the postage on these returned letters will fully compensate the department for all the extra expenditures.


Paris LeFollet tells us that January bonnets are worn composed of two colors. For instance, black velvet, trimmed with colored flowers or feathers. They are still made large, but not of the unbecoming shape recently worn, being rather flat instead of pointed at the top. Colored pipings are no longer considered in good taste, having become so common.

FEBRUARY 5, 1862

Gen. Burnside’s Expedition.

We find, in the Providence Journal, several interesting facts concerning the expedition of Gen. Burnside, furnished by Rev. Mr. Flanders, Chaplain of the Fourth Rhode Island Regiment. According to his statement, the disasters to the fleet were far less serious than it would appear from special correspondents. The Journal says:

Mr. Flanders was on board the Eastern Queen, the vessel which carried the Rhode Island Fourth, and was an eye-witness of the furious storm and of the disasters which the expedition experienced.  His statements therefore will be received with great interest, and may be implicitly relied on.

Most of the vessels of lighter draft were successfully carried over the bar.  The City of New York, however, in attempting to get over, unfortunately struck.  She was loaded with an exceedingly valuable cargo, which proved a total loss.  Everything on board of her went to the bottom.  The sailors were unable to save even their clothes.  After she struck it was seen at wants to be impossible to get her off, and there she remained for two days, no boat daring, or at least attempting, to go to her assistance.  Finally, however, her crew were safely landed, and the vessel abandoned.

Among other heroic acts to which the hazardous condition of the fleet gave rise, one in connection with the loss of the City of New York especially deserves mention.  Mr. Showerman, was the last to leave the vessel.  Lashing himself to the rigging, he remained in there until all had left.  Then mounting the mast, he cut down the flag, wrapped it around his body, and returning to the deck and thence on shore, bore it as a triumphant trophy of his daring heroism.  Said he, "I meant either to die in its folds or bring it safely to land."

It was the prevailing opinion at Hatteras that the City of New York was lost through the treachery of the pilot. Commodore Goldsborough declared to Mr. Flanders, "that with the permission of the government, he would hang him that very day." The crew of the City of New York were also of the opinion that the pilot played the part of the traitor.

The City of New York, together with the Pocahontas and a schooner loaded with oats, were the only vessels which proved total wrecks.  The Pocahontas was comparatively a worthless craft.  Her cargo consisted chiefly of baggage horses, to the number of 130, most of which were drowned.  Their loss can be easily supplied.  The statement that 90 horses attached to the Rhode Island battery were drowned, Mr. Flanders pronounces a mistake.  When he left they have been safely landed.  His own horse, however, and that of another staff officer, which happened to be on board the Pocahontas, were lost.

Several vessels were driven on shore, experiencing, however, but trifling damage, and will undoubtedly be successfully got off.  Among those driven ashore was the Eastern Queen, which carried the Fourth Rhode Island Regiment.  But the troops were landed without the occurrence of a single casualty.

In the opinion of Mr. Flanders, the expedition could not be much delayed on account of the storm and the losses which it had encountered, but would soon commence active operations. Gen. Burnside was full of hope, anticipating the most complete success.  In conversation he remarked "that he had seen darker days and then these," and that no disaster which the fleet had yet experienced disheartened him in the least.  The soldiers place the utmost confidence in his judgment and abilities as a General, and wherever he will lead they are ready and eager to follow.



It is probably impossible to settle upon any permanent policy with regard to the treatment of liberated slaves. The most that can be done now is to adopt such plans as will answer temporary purposes. It is certain that they should be well treated and their wants supplied and if they can be employed in any kind of labor either in connection with army operations or in cultivating the soil, they should be so employed. It is now time to begin preparations for the cotton crop for the present year, and the thousands of blacks within the national lines on the coast of South Carolina might be set to work in making the necessary preparations. It is far better to keep these people busy than to maintain them in idleness, and their labor might be made exceedingly profitable, for it is well known that the region where Gen. Sherman’s forces are entrenched produces the best cotton in the world. Nothing is more useless than to speculate upon what is ultimately to be done with these people. So long as the war lasts nobody can venture to predict. The only thing that can be done is to provide for them, and use them to the best advantage.


Flood at Pittsburg.--The heavy rains of the past week had their legitimate effect, which was exhibited in the unusual spectacle of our rivers at flood height in January.  The rides commenced on Saturday, and by noon yesterday the Monongahela pier mark showed twenty-eight feet water.  The Alleghany was also running very high, and that portion of the Alleghany City known as "the bottom" was, as usual, partially submerged, some of the streets overflowed so as to be impassable except in skiffs.

Two new steamboats came down the Monongahela, one from Brownsville and one from California.  Several coal flats were carried off, and one sunk at the wharf.

Hundreds of barrels of oil on the Alleghany wharf were floated off.  At least a thousand barrels in all must have floated away.

The saw mills and tanneries along the opposite bank of the Alleghany are well flooded, and the fires of some of the shops on the Monongahela River in South Pittsburg and Temperanceville were extinguished.

The cellars on Duquesne Way, St. Clair, and other streets leading to the river, are full of water, to the dismay of the inmates of the houses.--Pittsburg Post, 21st.

FEBRUARY 6, 1862

Taxation Coming.

The Committee of Ways and Means are diligently providing for a tax that shall be effective and equal.  They are as hard pressed for action as has ever been McClellan, but like him have resoluteness enough to take time to do their work well.  They have made a terrible squirming among the editors by the proposal to tax newspapers, that we see no occasion for it.  We say, "lay on McDuff," and everywhere, for it is a glorious cause in which we suffer.  Our list is at your service.  Telegraphic messages also will be included in the list of things taxed, with a moderate rate of taxation upon most of the articles of necessary consumption, and higher rates on distilled liquors and articles of luxury, on legacies and probates and passengers by railroads and other conveyances.  From these sources, taken in connection with the tariff on imports, it is confidently expected, after a most careful investigation, that the Government will derive in annual revenue of at least one hundred and fifty millions dollars.  To the ordinary expenses of the Government do not exceed seventy-five millions, which, being deducted from the estimated revenue, will leave an amount sufficient to pay and interest of six cent. a the loan of twelve hundred and fifty million dollars, or nearly three hundred million dollars more than the estimates of the several Departments of the amount of the public debt at the end of another fiscal year, if the state of affairs should remain in the same deplorable condition as now.

This tax bill will give to the bonds of the United States the characters so much desired by capitalists, that of a sure interest-paying security.  With such a character, there would be no harm done if the principle were never paid, so far as those holding the bonds are concerned, because capitalists in the aggregate do not care for the payment of their principal; the only value which they place upon their capital is derived from the fact that it will yield them a revenue; if and if it anytime the capitalist should wish to use the principal of his bond, he knows that he can always sell it to another who is desirous to invest as much as he desires to sell.


Interesting from Mexico.

Mexico is surprising the world by her energy.  Juarez has revised his Cabinet; a heavy war tax has been levied; 150,000 volunteers will soon be in the field; all factions have united to save the nation from foreign subjugation; Vera Cruz, in possession of the Spanish invaders, has been declared no longer a port of entry, and the allied powers will find the conquest of united and regenerated Mexico no easy task.  Letters received from Havana state that the Allies are greatly dissatisfied.  They find the population as one man against them.  The troops at Vera Cruz are suffering briefly from sickness, 500 men out of 8000 being in the hospitals.  Whenever they have ventured beyond the range of their cannon they have been shot down, if few, or driven back if in force.  Discontented, and virtually besieged, they quarrel among themselves.  On one occasion a French regiment fought a Spanish regiment until a number were killed and wounded in each.  It was determined that the French force should immediately land at Tampico, and the English were at the same time to attack Matamoras.  Mr. Corwin writes that Doblado, who is the soul of the new Administration, declares that Mexico will make a successful resistance to the invaders.

The Origin of "Contrabands."--General Butler has had the credit of inventing the term of contrabands, as applied to slaves, and it has been regarded as an inspiration of genius.  Slaves are now hardly known by any other name; the author of the term, however, was not Gen. Butler, but George Opdyke, the present Mayor of New York.  In his volume on political economy, there is a chapter on Slavery, in which occurs the following passage: "Slaves are not even furnished, as they formerly were, by African traders, at the cheap rates of stolen goods, the article being now contraband with us," &c.  Probably Gen. Butler had read this work and remembered the term which he so happily applied. Mr. Opdyke meant they were contraband of commerce, while the General called them contraband of war.--Sat. Eve. Courier.


Look out for Rattlesnakes!

As the warm ides of March approach, it is apprehended that these venomous reptiles we'll make their appearance.  Look out for them!

If you hear men condemning the war as needless if an rejoicing at every failure of our arms--Look out for rattlesnakes!

If you hear men berating the Administration, and denouncing the Government as oppressive--Look out for rattlesnakes!

If you hear men whining about coming taxes, and the awful expenses of the war--Look out for rattlesnakes!

If you hear men expressing more sympathy for the accursed system of slavery, which has brought upon us this direful war, than for the Union which it seeks to overthrow--Look out for rattlesnakes!

If you hear men wishing ill to the brave soldiers who are fighting to save the best government the world ever saw--Look out for rattlesnakes!

If you hear of men willing to offer aid and comfort to the enemy by political shuffling for office & power--Look out for rattlesnakes!


On to Knoxville!—The St. Louis News advocates the speediest possible occupation of Knoxville, Tennessee, and says that it is at this time, a more important strategic point than Richmond.  Its possession would be more valuable to us, and a greater disadvantage to the enemy, than the occupation of the Virginia Capital, for it would cut the revolt in twain, and completely separate Virginia from the Southwest, and render the transportation of troops or supplies from Tennessee, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama to the Potomac impossible.  If it would, in fact, separate the South into two Confederacies, completely isolated from each other. Gen. Thomas' army ought to push forward at once to Cumberland Gap, and, after a brief rest there, advance to Knoxville, while all the troops that can be spared from Ohio and Indiana should be sent after him, till Knoxville was garrisoned by 50,000 Federal troops, with 30,000 more holding the line of communication between that place through Kentucky to the Ohio River.


FEBRUARY 7, 1862

The Medical Department of the Army.

In a war like the present, when the principal question seems to be "how not to do it," and when a most "masterly inactivity" is maintained by the largest army of modern times, there is especial danger that the health of the soldier will not be properly cared for.  After making all allowance for the notorious disposition to grumble and exaggerate, we cannot help believing that there is a great want in the medical department of our army.  Sick and dying soldiers now suffering in camp on the Potomac and elsewhere, as well as the memory of those who have yielded up their lives in this national struggle, demand that attention should be immediately given to the sanitary condition of our army.

This matter is freshly recalled to our mind by receiving a letter from a soldier at Camp Griffin to his wife in a neighboring town, extracts from which we shall copy, not for the sake of finding fault, but to show what some of our soldiers have to endure, and the rascality and corruption that exists to a greater or less extent in every department of our army.  We to add that the man referred to does not belong to the Vermont 3d, every account from which represents the medical department has being the best.  Here is what he writes:

"It is rather hard for the sick boys to be out of money and have to live on the coarse fare that we get in camp; but they must stand it as long as they can, and then die.  There is no feeling here for the soldiers by the officers.  While they live on fine steak and fresh mutton, the sick soldier must eat his salt junk and hard bread or starve.  Such is life.  Now, you will think that I am sick of the army, but it is not so.  I never have seen the day that I was sorry I enlisted, and I am not much disappointed either, but I can't help thinking when I see the boys suffering with sickness, and suffering for the want of proper care that such things are not right.  There is a great deal said and written about how well the soldiers are used, how much provision they get, and how well they are taking care of when they are sick, and all this; but we know nothing about it till we get here and try it.  It is all a lie; there is no care taken of the sick soldier only what his comrades do for him.  The officers will not excuse a man from duty unless he is excused by the surgeon of the regiment, and he is generally some ignorant fool that has got his appointment by favoritism; and in this case of ours, he will look at the sick once a day; and nine times out of ten he will excuse those that are able to do duty, and those that are sick he will not excuse, and his word is law.  The hospital is not half as comfortable as your woodshed, and they are thrown in there, and if they have some friend that will see to them, well and good; if not he will perhaps get looked at once a day and left to die; but it is all right because he is under the care of the surgeon.  Now this is the truth, for I know it.  Perhaps all surgeons are not like ours--I hope they are not; I enjoy it, after all.  Money would not hire me to come home till I have had one battle with the war is over, but I see a great many things that make mad."

If we can believe the accounts we are read, the hospital accommodations in the western army are much worse than that of the Potomac.  One writer says:

"The linens, the beds, the patients were filthy in the extreme; the stench in the rooms absolutely intolerable.  No pigsty I ever saw looked more disorderly and filthy.  No healthy nurse was visible, but the hardly convalescent, with-difficulty-ambulating invalid is the only nurse unacquainted with his duty, and wholly unable to perform it when he learns it."

In the southern expeditions there has been a criminal neglect to provide medicines and proper shelter for the sick.  One letter from Hilton Head says:

"About one hundred have died, mostly from preventable diseases.  The thermometer will rise to 85° in the day time, and ice will form in the night. Dr. _____, (an army surgeon) says he expects to lose a greater or less number every cold night until proper accommodations are procured.  For instance, on one such night following such a day, four men in one regiment (Michigan) died, all of them a convalescent, three from fever, and one from small pox."

Congress should interfere in this matter.  It is bad enough to be killed in battle--much worse to rot in camp, which is unsuitable food and no care.

Testimony of patients in the general hospital at Alexandria, Va., reveals gross abuses there.  The patients are fed on sour bread and half cooked meat; their rations are short as well as poor, and any complaint subjects the men to barbarous punishment.

Amicable Feeling Abroad.

We have copied and said considerable upon the dark side of our foreign relations; we will now give what the Washington correspondent of the New York ­ says.  We hope it is true:

"The opinion is expressed here in diplomatic circles that England and France will henceforth maintain not only a strict neutrality toward this country, but will, in a little while, give evidence of their willingness to allow the war to proceed without even attempting to influence this government to change its measures with regard to the stone blockade, or any other we see fit to adopt for bringing the war to a close.

"Private letters from a member of the British cabinet to a distinguished senator here make no complaint whatever with regard to this or any other question, but, on the contrary, congratulate his correspondent of the settlement of the Trent question, inasmuch as it settles definitely the only thing at all likely to have led to a belligerent movement on the part of Great Britain for the United States.  There is not the slightest ground for apprehending armed or any other interference; no such matter is alluded to in any dispatches or in any of the correspondence.  It is considered here as a fully without foundation, and as a mere stock-jobbing work or speculating ruse.”


A Remonstrance from the Sharp Shooters.

One of the Vermont boys in Berdan's regiment of sharpshooters gives a pretty gloomy picture of affairs.  If his statements are true we do not wonder that he grumbles.  We copy from the Rutland Herald:

We have now been here some four months, and no arms yet.  We were told that our arms would be in Washington before we were, and when we arrived here we were told that we should have them in two or three weeks.  Since that time we have received the same promised repeatedly, every two or three weeks.  Every one knows what we were promised before we enlisted.  We were to furnish our own guns, and were to receive sixty dollars for the use of the same from the State or otherwise--or to be furnished with Sharp's latest improved Target Rifles. Col. Berdan has been trying to get Spence's Rifles, Enfield Rifles, or Colt's Muskets into our hands, with the promise of changing them four Sharp's Rifles, probably about five years after we are all dead.  But we do not choose to accept his proposition, as we are reliably informed of some of his earlier career.  About two weeks ago he came out at dress parade and read an order a copy of which he said had been sent to Sharp for two thousand Rifles, and said he had struggled hard to obtain for us such arms as he promised us, and had at last won the victory, and got the order, signed by Gen. McClellan; but the Sharp's Rifles have got to be Colt's Muskets again, and we understand he has ordered two thousand of them to be delivered in two or three days. Fine Sharp's Rifles, those!  We were informed some three months ago that we could depend nothing on him, but at that time the most of us had the utmost confidence in him.  The officers are all that have kept the organization in existence.  For two months past they have encouraged the men by telling them things they knew there was no foundation for whatever.  They have all got comfortable quarters and are getting good pay, and that is all they care for.  But the men have to be crammed into little he coops one upon another, or just as it happens, and when we get outside we are in mud about shoe deep, but must come out at the Bugle call or it punished, while the Officers lie in their tents, all comfortable and nice.  There is not a Regiment in the field but is better cared for and has better accommodations than we do.  We have been used like a pack of dogs ever since we came here.  All we ask of them is to use us as they agreed, and give us what they promised us and we will be satisfied.  But if we cannot get that, we appeal to His Excellency Gov. Holbrook to procure were our recall home.

FEBRUARY 8, 1862



Advance of the Federal Army.

Gallant Conduct of the Union Seamen.

Flight of the Rebel Army Around Fort Henry.

Cincinnati, Feb. 7.—The Gazette and Commercial’s Cairo correspondents give the following account of the bombardment and capture of Fort Henry:

Yesterday at 12:30 P.M. the gunboats Cincinnati, St. Louis, Carondelet and Essex, with the Tyler, Conestoga and Lexington bringing up the rear, advanced boldly against the rebel works, going to the right of Painter Creek Island immediately above where, on the east shore of the river stand the fortifications, and keeping out of range until at the head of the Island and within a mile of the enemy, passing the Island in full view of the rebel guns.

We steadily advanced, every man at his quarters, every ear strained to catch the flag officer's signal gun for the commencement of the action.  Our line of battle was on the left, the St. Louis next, the Carondelet next, with the Cincinnati, for the time being, the flag ship, having on board flag officer Foote, and next the Essex.  We advanced in line, the Cincinnati a boats length ahead, when at 11:30 the Cincinnati opened the ball, when immediately the three accompanying boats followed suit.

The enemy was not backward and gave an admirable response, and the fight raged furiously for half an hour.  The steadily advanced, receiving and returning the storms of shot and shell, when getting within three hundred yards of the enemy's works, we came to a stand and poured into him right and left.  In the meantime the Essex had been crippled and drifted away from the scene of action, leaving the Cincinnati, Carondelet and St. Louis alone engaged.

At precisely forty minutes past 1, the enemy struck his colors, and such cheering, such wild excitement has seized the throats, arms and caps, of the 400 or 500 sailors of the gunboats, can be imagined and not described.  After the surrender, which was made to flag officer Foote by Gen. Lloyd Tilghman, who defended his fort in a much determined manner, we found that the rebel infantry encamped outside of the fort, numbering 4000 or 5000, had cut and run, leaving the rebel artillery company in command of the fort.

The fort mounted 17 guns, most of them 32 and 34-pounders, and one being a magnificent 10 inch Columbiad.  Our shots dismounted two of their guns, driving the enemy into the embrasures.  One of  their rifled 32-pounders burst during the engagement, wounding one of their generals.  The rebels claimed to have but 11 effective guns, worked by 54 men, the number all told of our prisoners.  They lost 5 killed and 10 badly wounded.  The infantry left everything in their flight.  A vast deal of plunder has fallen into our hands, including a large and valuable quantity of ordnance stores.

Gen. Tilghman is disheartened.  He thinks it one of the most damaging blows of the war.  In surrendering to flag officer Foote, he remarked, "I am glad to surrender to so gallant an officer." Flag officer Foote replied, "You do perfectly right, sir, in surrendering, but you should have blown my boat out of the water before I would have surrendered to you."

Into the engagement the Cincinnati was in the lead, and flying the flag officer's pennant, and the chief mark of the enemy's fire.  Flag officer Foote and Capt. Stembel crowded her defiantly into the teeth of the enemy's guns, she got 81 shots, some of them going completely through her.  The Essex was badly crippled when about half through the fight, and crowding steadily against the enemy; a ball passed into her forward port, through her heavy bulkheads, and squarely through one of her boilers, the escaping steam scalding several of the crew, including Capt. Porter. His aid, S. P. Britton, Jr., and Paymaster Lewis, were standing in a direct line of the ball's passage, Mr. Britton  being in the center of the group.  A shot struck Mr. Britton on the top of his head and scattered his brains in every direction.  The steam went into the pilot house, instantly killing Messrs. Ford and Bride, the pilots.  Many of the soldiers at the rush of steam, jumped overboard and were drowned.

The Cincinnati had one killed and six wounded.  The Essex had six seamen and two officers killed, seventeen wounded and five missing.  There were no casualties on the St. Louis or Carondelet, though the shot and shell fell upon them like rain.  The St. Louis was commanded by Leonard Paulding, who stood up on the gunboat and wrought the guns to the last--not a man flinched, and with cheer upon cheer, sent the shot and shell among the enemy.

Paducah, Ky, Feb. 7.--Gen. Smith on the West, and Gen. Grant on the east side of [the] Tennessee rivers, are pursuing the retreating rebels.

It is reported and is credited by some of our officers, that the rebel troops at Fort Henry were not true to the rebel cause and took advantage of the opportunity offered by an attack to run away from a fight that was distasteful to them.


From the Burnside Expedition.

New York, Feb. 7.—The Tribune has  special dispatch, dated “Pamlico Sound, Feb. 2d,” which says: “All the vessels of Burnside's expedition that are immediately wanted, to the number of fifty, are at anchor inside the bar.  Others can be taken over the bulkhead as they are wanted.  This has been accomplished with incredible effort, and in the face of the greatest discouragements.  We have information deemed a trustworthy that Gov. Wise is in command of 50,000 troops, and is daily reinforced at Nag's Head, on the outer beach, and 8000 on Roanoke Island, separated by a Roanoke Sound.  A vigorous defense of their position is expected. Gen. Burnside's force will be large, will be landed under his own, and flag officer Goldsborough's guns on the lower end, and east side of the Island.  The former will engage the batteries on Croater Sound, at short range, and the latter will push his force, to that part of the island where the enemy will be found.  A gunboat will be sent outside to shell Nag's Head.

Four deserters came down the Sound last night in a schooner from Middletown, where there are 800 troops among whom there was much disaffection.  They confirm previous reports concerning the panic prevailing on the main land.  There is every probability of a hard fight.


1 The good doctor was a poor etymologist. “Davis” actually means “son of David,” which in turns means “beloved [of God,] while “Lincoln” means “lake colony,” from the Latin lindum colonia, a placename in Britain.

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