2, 1862

A Skirmish at Lavergne
Our Army at Stevenson

Stevenson, March 1.—A large force of the enemy now occupy Nashville.

Their advance consists of 8,000 infantry and 600 cavalry.

Capt. Morgan’s company of Kentucky cavalry had a brush at Lavergne, 15 miles from Murfreesboro, on Thursday night, killing several of them, and only one of our men was wounded.

Our army marched from Murfreesboro hither yesterday.


Recognition—The Stone Blockade.—In the course of an article severely reprobating the stone blockade, the Scotchman says:

The Northern Government, which resorts to this extreme and almost obsolete action of war, has hitherto shown itself almost impotent in the ordinary operations of war, though having in the field the largest army the world ever saw. And again, the peculiar object of the war renders such an act peculiarly insensate—the object being to bring back as fellow citizens under a democratic republic the people so barbarously and uselessly injured, and to re-unite as part of one country the territory sought to be destroyed. Already, as we are informed, that act has given the French Emperor an opportunity of again pressing upon our Cabinet his advice that Europe should—at least to the extent of recognizing as a fact the Confederate Government, and not recognizing as a fact the Federal blockade—do something toward bringing to an end a war whose barbarous acts and very nature are a discredit to civilization and humanity.

It is known that several months ago France urged the British Government to join her in recognizing the Southern Confederacy, and disregarding the blockade. We hear, from good sources, that the French Government has renewed the request, and is pushing it with much eagerness, and it is considered certain that when the French Chambers meet on the 27th inst., there will be such expressions of French opinion as will bring the question into at least a critical position, and in all probability, give much offence to the Americans. There exists in London an active and growing party, including many members of Parliament, having for its object an immediate recognition of the Southern Confederacy, on certain understood terms. This party is in communication with the quasi representatives of the South in London, and gives out that it sees its way to a desirable arrangement. Our information is that the South, acting through its London agents, is at least willing to have it understood that, in consideration of immediate recognition and the disregard of the “paper blockade,” it would engage for these three things—a treaty of free trade; the prohibition of all import of slaves, and the freedom of all blacks born hereafter.

It will easily be seen that, if any such terms were offered—but we hesitate to believe the last of them—a pressure in favor of the South would come upon the British Government from more than one formidable section of our public. The relentless and destructive spirit in which the North conducts the civil war cannot but have some direct influence on the feelings of our Government; but it operates more powerfully in an indirect form, by giving stimulus and material to the parties just mentioned as engaged in employing pressure from without.

Home Guards.

While so many of our active men are going into camp or volunteering to rally around the standard of our gallant Beauregard, we would call the attention of our citizens to the reserve organizations for the defence of our city, which are now being formed among those exempt from military duty.

We are informed that there are several companies already organized, and these reserve corps will probably soon amount to  a regiment. We see no reason why they should not reach a brigade, as there must be in a large city like ours from two to four thousand citizens over the age of forty five, who are not attached to any military organization under the militia law of the State. Their arms will be double-barrel shot guns, or any other weapon that is effective. We understand that those who are active in organizing these reserves, do not expect to make them a corps for parade or show, but for service in the hour of danger. Some eighty men, in one company of Confederate Guard Reserve, nearly all of whom formerly belonged to Confederate Guard B, which numbered 180 members, have already organized and will prepare themselves for efficient service.

The Citizen Guard number some ninety names, and several other companies are under way.

In discussing this subject with our citizens, we found an almost unanimous sentiment in favor of these organizations.

Many of our active men are going into camp, or preparing to rally to the defence of Beauregard in the West, and they leave with more willingness, knowing that these Reserve Guards, while other military corps may be ordered away, will be organized and ready to protect their homes and firesides. They will prove true men in the hour of danger, and while drilling and preparing for the enemy, should they appear, they are active as good citizens in aiding our cause.

We hope to see our citizens enroll themselves in these companies until at least a brigade is formed.


The Enemy’s Loss at Fort Donelson.—The Memphis Appeal learns that the Federals report their loss in killed, wounded and prisoners at Fort Donelson to be between 5,000 and 8,000.

And an officer of Gen. Pillow’s command, in a communication to the Appeal, says:

“Going back over the battle ground to hunt for my wounded men, I saw all their dead. In places they were very thick, as though they had been carried back as they fell. In all, I suppose the number of killed and wounded in the action of the 15th, was about two thousand—making, together with their loss on Thursday and on the evening of the 15th, very nearly six thousand in killed and wounded.”


Removal of Government Works.—The Mobile Advertiser, of Wednesday, says:

“We understand that a considerable train of care is to be dispatched up the road this morning, for the purpose of bringing down the machinery of the Government works recently located at Nashville. These have been safely removed from that place, and are to be transferred to Columbus, Miss. They will be safe among the Mississippians.”

, 1862

Good Faith Needed.—About three weeks ago we received accurate information of certain facts connected with the destination and armament of the Monitor, as Ericsson’s battery is called—which gave conclusive indications as to the point where she is expected to operate. As it was obvious that the battery ought to be left to announce its own movements, we carefully abstained from all allusion to what we had learned.

This was before the government had made known its sense of the importance of withholding such intelligence. But since Mr. Stanton issued his order, information as to the destination of the battery and peculiarities connected with its ordnance has been widely issued by the press, in quarters to which the “censorship” does not extend, conveying information of great probable importance, in advance of the arrival of the battery. As we cannot suppose any one to be insensible to the fact that this case comes within the spirit of Mr. Stanton’s order, to say no more, we can only add that it would be for the advantage of the country, if there were a little more good faith and cooperation in carrying out a regulation of so much consequence.


Lack of Endurance.—Some of those rebels who comprehend what fighting means are much disconcerted at the wholesale surrenders of Roanoke Island and Fort Donelson. They speak with unmeasured contempt of the surrender of strong positions by garrisons provided with ammunition, food and water, and not weakened by any heavy loss. Jefferson Davis does not disguise his dissatisfaction with the conduct of the Roanoke garrison, and can hardly trust his ears as to the Donelson humiliation. It will be remembered that Professor Eustis in his lecture on Friday evening severely condemned the Roanoke surrender, looking at it from the merely scientific point of view. The Canadian journals, too, we observe, have been not a little struck by the same phenomenon, having been led hitherto to suppose that the southern troops could be relied upon to carry out their vaunted resolution of dying in the last ditch.

It is sufficiently clear, that however good the southern forces may be for bush-fighting, they lack the endurance and persistency needed for good regular troops. It is a question whether the same defect does not exist in the moral constitution of their whole people, and threaten the early abandonment of their scheme of rebellion.


Union Spirit in Tennessee.—The telegraph furnished us a few days ago with a special dispatch printed in the Chicago Times, denying the existence of any Union feeling in Clarksville. The paper named is not good authority by any means, its own conversion to Union sentiments having been quite tardy. We may offset it by the following extract from a letter by a correspondent of the New York Tribune:

“Clarksville is at present held by three Union regiments, though hardly a handful of men is required here now, as those people who remain are, or at least seem to be, loyal enough, and to be delighted at the advent of our long expected forces. One sees, in travelling about the streets, nothing but an air of welcome from the citizens, who are kind, cordial and patriotic, as the residents of New York, Philadelphia and Cincinnati would be had their homes been freed from the presence of a hated, though powerful and oppressive foe.”

The Movement Well Timed.—Some time ago it was hinted that among other reasons which influenced General McClellan in timing the movements of the army, might be the fact that many of the enlistments in the rebel army would expire early in this year. Jefferson Davis in his message gives a remarkable confirmation of this view, and of the wisdom which governed the policy adopted by McClellan.

Davis thinks that the short enlistments which are now expiring contributed in a material degree to the late reverses of the rebels. Furloughs and reënlistments, he says, had disorganized their forces, and impaired their ability for successful defence. New regiments are organizing and “the whole body of new levies and reënlisted men will probably be ready in the ranks within the next thirty days.” It appears then that this is exactly the month out of the twelve in which the rebels are to be taken at disadvantage. Their forces are now weakened by the departure of men upon furloughs and at the expiration of their time. Thirty days from now they will have a raw force to oppose our own disciplined legions, when thirty hours is too long a time to wait, as events are now marching! What better proof of the wisdom with which the military policy of the United States has been governed could be desired?


The Dispatches.—It is often suggested that the war dispatches now received may probably be relied upon as authentic. We do not so understand it, however. Even if the government is superior to the temptation which has given such a bad reputation to all war bulletins, and which has at times affected the truth of its own, there is still another point to be considered.

There have been numerous “Special Washington dispatches” printed during the last week in New York papers, which there is good reason for believing were written in New York. The sensation papers still have their old interest in printing false reports, and the stock speculators have the same; while for the time their stories have a somewhat improved chance of being believed, as they will naturally be supposed to have been passed by the government superintendent at Washington. These stories may be based upon surmise as to probable movements, or not; they will not be military intelligence, and may be supposed to avoid the prohibition in Mr. Stanton’s order. And as the telegraphic censorship is exercised at Washington, if a New York morning paper prints a fabricated special dispatch, there is nothing to prevent its being telegraphed hither on the same day and laid before the public.

We are inclined to believe, therefore, that it will be necessary to use more than usual care, in scrutinizing any statement which purports in any way to rest upon the authority of a special dispatch.

MARCH 4, 1862

Springfield Morals

Certain events have occurred recently in Springfield which lead to the conviction that the morals of the city are not what they should be, and that they are by no means improving. This condition of affairs is the natural result of the recent extraordinary influx of population, especially so, considering the character of the new materials. Nearly or quite two thousand men, mostly young and middle-aged, drawn from a wide variety of society, have found their way into the government and other workshops, and the majority of these are either unmarried, or have been obliged to come without their wives and families. The lack of tenements has separated numbers from their families, and from all domestic influences. Of course, the eagles find the carcass, and it is believed by those who have opportunities for observation that licentiousness was never more rife here than at present. With licentiousness, intemperance always walks hand in hand. Rum-holes of all grades prosper, and worse places find abundant patronage.

Nor is this all, if we are correctly informed. We pretend to no absolute or scientific knowledge of the matter, but the popular impression is very wide of the mark if there is not more gambling in progress here at this very time than there has been before in the history of Springfield. We are told that there are at least four gambling halls, or hells, between Bliss and Pynchon streets, on Main; and that regular machinery is in operation to lure into these, not only our old citizens, but the men who work in the armory. It is even asserted that the gamblers have their private tools among the armorers themselves, and that many an armorer has been thoroughly “cleaned out” through the connivance and conspiracy of his fellow workmen. We are told that some of these hells keep up their operations while night shields them from discovery, and that the professional gamblers who make Springfield their headquarters are getting rich.

Of course, all these operations cannot be carried on without coming within the cognizance of the police. If rum holes are kept open at independent hours, or managed in an outrageous manner, the police know it. If houses of prostitution exist in large numbers for the pollution and absolute ruin of a large number of the young men now gathered here, the police—if they have the slightest fitness for their places—are aware of the fact. If these gambling hells exist according to the general conviction, the police not only know the fact, but they know where they are, who are responsible for keeping them open, and who are among their victims. The question very naturally arises as to whether the police are doing their duty in the suppression of these nuisances. Is there any less drunkenness, or prostitution, or gambling, in consequence of the existence of our police? Is there any fear of the police before the eyes of those whose business it is to pander to vice and to lead astray from virtue?

We are not among those who suppose it possible for the police to enforce all the laws of the Decalogue. We have no impracticable notions touching their province or their power; but we believe they can do more than they are doing, and that they ought to do more. If these gambling hells exist, they ought to be broken up, and they can be broken up, even if they are triple-doored and double-barred. Knowledge of them should be brought to the proprietors of the rooms occupied, and if the proprietors fail to abate the nuisance, they should be prosecuted or publicly exposed. The same should be the case with all houses of prostitution, and all the dram shops which foster drunkenness. Our mayor is a man of position and character, and he cannot afford to be in any way involved with a system of police that permits these public

evils to pass unquestioned. He cannot afford to permit this year to pass away without vindicating his reputation as a lover of temperance, morality and good order, for he knows that, whether justly or unjustly, he is believed to owe his election to the very influences whose existence and power we deprecate and would see annihilated. He has dismissed one marshal—let him dismiss another, if these evils cannot be cured without the change. We want only to see an earnest attempt on the part of the mayor and police to produce a reform, to yield to both a support as honest and hearty as our opposition to their re-instatement in power has been.

As for the young men who yield themselves so ready to the spoiler, God only knows what will become of them. It seems strange that young men cannot learn that the beastly vice of licentiousness leads directly to only one end, viz., death and damnation—to the pollution of all healthy sexual sympathies, to the foulest of diseases, to the loss of all self-respect, to absolute rottenness of character. It seems strange that young men can be lured within the toils of the gambler, when all human experience tells them that no man goes into a gambling experience and comes out of it whole. To yield one’s self to the seductions of the gaming table, is to surrender life, soul, body, hope—all—to the devil. The home of the prostitute, the hell of the gambler, and the hoe of the dram-seller ought all alike to be shunned by any young man who loves a good name and hopes for either length of days, peace of mind, or comfort of the body.


There is no exciting news from the war this morning, though the reports from every quarter indicate that all movements are going on prosperously. Gen. Banks’ division is firmly established on the Virginia side of the Potomac, and has undisturbed possession of the region around Harper’s Ferry. Reports from the West show that the rebels in their retreat from Columbus, burned the town, rather than have it fall into our hands. It is not known yet, where the next stand will be made, whether at Memphis or on one of the islands in the Mississippi. The Memphis papers brag and bluster, and talk of driving the invaders from their soil; but the driving thus far seems to be on the other side, and is likely to continue so.


The tax bill which we have been waiting so long and anxiously, was reported to the House on Monday . . . It provides for a tax on almost everything we have or use, and will reach all classes of people. We have all got to put our hands deep into our pockets and pay out the cash for this war. We have had a period of rejoicing over the victories and now we must begin to count the cost, and though the contemplation of the tax-gatherers’ visits is not the most pleasant thing imaginable we shall not make any objection to doing our share, if we can have the assurance that the rebellion is going to be so thoroughly crushed that it will never think of rising again. The bill will doubtless be modified considerably before its passage, but we cannot expect or hope its provisions will be made much easier. The committee has spent much time in its preparation; and while some of its provisions are manifestly unjust, it probably comes as near dividing the burden equally, as anything that could be devised, without a trial of its practical workings.

MARCH 5, 1862

Treatment of Sick Soldiers.—Mr. Hezekiah B. George of Bennington makes a statement in the Manchester Mirror, describing the treatment his son received on his passage home from Port Royal in the steamer Atlantic. He and Joseph James were members of the 4th N.H. Regiment. James make the following statement:

“We (Messrs. George and James) went on board the Atlantic and were immediately ordered forward to go below into the hold, where there were a gang of drunken sailors. My comrade, George, had not been able to bear any weight upon his leg for more than two months, there being a very bad sore upon it, which discharged profusely. The stairs which we had to descend on going into the hold, (an awful, filthy, damp, cold, uncomfortable place,) were so narrow that we could not carry him, and the poor fellow had to get down as best he could. We had not been in the miserable hole but a few minutes when we were ordered on deck again to give our names. I plead with the officers to receive Mr. George’s name and not compel him to move, for it seemed as though he could never survive those horrid stairs again. The only response to my entreaties for the poor lame boy was, ‘I don’t care, he’s got to come up some way.’ So there was n o other alternative but to submit to the powers that were. On our return to the quarters assigned us, we, upon examination, found nothing but the bare floor to lie upon. I asked for a mattress for my comrade to lie upon, and was told that I could not have one, although there were hundreds on board not in use. I then went to the steward for something to eat, and was told, ‘your d----d officers have not provided anything for you,’ consequently we got nothing. I tried to buy, but they would not even sell to us, although there was an abundance on board, judging from the table which I saw spread, covered with all the luxuries, almost, that a New York market afforded. We obtained something to partially satisfy hunger from a gentleman who brought something on board from the hospital. I went again to the steward and asked for something for my sick friend to eat. The reply I received was ‘Better go to the doctor and get a dose of salts.’

The night before we arrived in New York, the steward came to the hatchway and threw down to us as to a herd of swine, a pan full of hard dry pieces of bread and stale Southern beef.

When off Cape Hatteras the steamer struck a shoal and shipped a great quantity of water which ran down into our quarters, already too uncomfortable for a person in health, covering the floor upon which we had to lie and completely saturating all our clothing. I then thought something must be done for  those who were unable to sit up; accordingly I went again to the Captain, begging of him to let me have a mattress for my poor sick comrade to lie upon, telling him the condition which we were in in vain; consequently he had to lie in his wet clothes on the cold wet floor. One poor fellow in consumption died there on the floor before reaching New York, and I have not the least shadow of a doubt that with proper care could have lived to have seen his wife and children, and had some one to smooth his dying pillow.

On our arrival in New York we went to the office of Col. D. D. Tompkins, No. 61 State st., and in the settlement he deducted thirty dollars from our pay for the identical suit of clothes which the State gave us at the time we enlisted.”

These are the plain facts of the case as related by Mr. Joseph James and confirmed by my son, both of which are ready to attest to the facts when called upon to do so. Mr. James stated to me that he succeeded in buying of one of the seamen a small piece of cake for which he paid twenty-five cents.


The Burnside Expedition.—Dispatches from the Burnside expedition confirm the reported burning of Winton by the Federal forces. The 9th New York Regiment went up the Chowan river with three gunboats, but finding the enemy in full force, returned without making an attack. In retaliation for being fired on, the town was shelled. The object of the expedition was to destroy the railroad bridges on the Black Water and Chowan rivers. The greater part of the force commanded by Gen. Burnside was still at Roanoke Island.

The Navy Department has dispatches from Com. Goldsborough giving further particulars of previous operations of the expedition, the substance of which is:

As out troops took undisturbed possession of Edenton, part of a flying artillery regiment, variously estimated at from 100 to 300 men, precipitately fled without firing a shot. Many of the inhabitant also fled. There are no fortifications in the water approaches to Edenton.

Among the results of the expedition are the destruction of eight cannon and one schooner on the stocks at Edenton. Two schooners were captured in the Sound, one having on board 4000 bushels of corn. Six bales of cotton were taken from the Custom House wharf. There were no public stores in the town and the Custom House was empty.

Flag Officer Goldsborough says he remained two hours abreast of the town, and was visited by the authorities ad others, many of whom professed sentiments of loyalty. . .

Later dispatches received at the Navy Department say our forces have taken possession of the Seaboard Railroad and destroyed two bridges across the Blackwater and Nottaway rivers, cutting off communication between Norfolk and Weldon, North Carolina. It crosses the two rivers above named about thirty miles from Winton. They are about five miles apart, and unite after crossing the Railroad, and form the Chowan river, which empties into Albemarle Sound. Winton is on the Chowan.

MARCH 6, 1862


The Crowning Triumph.

The news of the recent victories spreads joy throughout the loyal States, and hand in hand with that joy goes forth a spontaneous gush of patriotism that promises well for the future of our beloved country, indicating as t does that the great mass of the citizens of the North rejoice at the triumph of the Federal arms not alone as a military achievement—not alone as the defeat of an enemy upon the field of battle—but as affording hope of  a speedy termination of an unnatural and ruinous war. The bright rays of victory are seen through a nation’s tears; but in the distance spreads the bow of promise that tells of a vindicated Constitution—a restored Union—a re-united People. Upon thousands and thousands of ears, within a few hours, have fallen the touching words of the Father of his Country, and they will have their due effect, and will remind the victors in the hour of triumph that we fight, not to conquer a people, not to subvert the laws, not to interfere with the rights of any of the States, but to uphold the Constitution that Washington enforced, and to preserve the Union that Washington created.

Several months ago, Gen. McClellan announced that when the contest came it would be “short, quick and desperate,” and his words appear about to be fulfilled. It is very probable now, that our armies, marching onward with the confidence so essential to the success of an attacking party, will encounter but few if any substantial reverses, while the rebels, dispirited and embarrassed, will find it difficult to maintain that discipline so necessary to successful resistance. But there should be no pause—no staying of the favorable tide. Prompt movements on Nashville, Memphis, Florence, and Chattanooga, will cut all the railroad lines in that section of the country and render certain the fall of the Southwest. The division of Gen. Buell will move rapidly, and Hunter will sweep through Arkansas into Texas. The mortar boats will awaken the echoes of the Mississippi, New Orleans will be attacked from the sea, the expeditions on the South Atlantic coats will do their appointed work, and as soon as the condition of the roads permit, Gen. McClellan himself will push forward over the sacred soil of Virginia with a steadiness and irresistible force that will repay us for all the delay that ahs necessarily occurred in the movement of the main army.

There will be resistance, desperate resistance doubtless, at points, but the signs indicate with certainty that the spirit of the rebellion is broken, and that the last hope of the Southern Confederacy, recognition by France and England, is dissipated. Those Nations, prudent as scrupulous, will be the first to abandon the South should it prove itself unable to resist the power of the Federal Government.

Such is the present prospect before the loyal States, and, as we have said, it is well that blending with the triumph of our arms, and in harmony with it, is manifested a spirit that proves to the world the objects for which we are so freely pouring forth our treasure and our blood. If, as we are soften told, the people of the South have no sympathy with this wicked Rebellion; if love for the Nation’s Flag lingers in many a breast in the seceding States, awaiting only an opportunity to make itself once more apparent, then the hour of victory is the most fitting time for assuring to the misled masses of 

our sister States their full constitutional rights upon their return to allegiance to the Government. Let it be known, as our troops march onward from victory to victory, that over the conquered territory we spread no conqueror’s power, but only the protecting shield of the Constitution and the laws; and , before long, prejudice and error will be removed from the minds of the people of the South, and Peace under a restored Union—Peace under the Constitution as it has hitherto bound together the States of the North and of the South—will prove more grateful to the country than a thousand triumphs on the field of battle.—Albany Argus.


The Army at Charlestown, Va.—Contrabands Arriving in Large Numbers—Martinsburg Occupied by Federal Troops

Charlestown, Va., March 2.—The main body of Gen. Banks’s division rests in the vicinity of Charlestown. No disaster or accident has occurred since its concentration at the departure from Sandy Hook to cause any anxiety to friends at home.

Three inches of snow fell to-day.

The hitherto rancorous Secessionists now pay marked respect to the Federal uniforms. The citizens who have been compelled to succumb to rebel force are elated at the prospects of the future.

It is gratifying to perceive that the country through which the army passed bears marks of the usual agricultural industry. It is apparent that the future cereal crops of this prolific region have not been neglected.

As may be supposed, the town and country are destitute of imported articles of consumption. There is no lack of bread, meat and coarse cloths.

Hundreds of contrabands are hourly seeking refuge within our lines, but they are allowed to roam at large without espionage or care. In fact, but little notice is taken of them, except top prevent  their return beyond our posts.

The general reports from Winchester are conflicting, and but little reliance is placed upon them, coming as they do from refugees and contrabands. The military commanders are undoubtedly  better informed than the public and are consequently prepared for any emergency which may arise.

Considerable flour accredited to the rebel army has been seized, but private property has been strictly respected.

Martinsburg is occupied by the Union troops to-day. [Approved by Gen. McClellan.]


Victory without abolition, peace without the aid of Negroes, returning allegiance without the violation of a single principle of our institutions—these, says the Detroit Free Press, are the glorious fruits of the resistance by the President, McClellan and Stanton, of the Abolitionists. The South begins to know that its leaders have lied—that the North does not desire to rob it of its property. Hence the tide is turning—the Union sentiment revives, and followers drop off from Jeff. Davis. These are the fruits of a conservative policy.

MARCH 7, 1862

A Sharp Little Fight.

A special dispatch to the Chicago Tribune from Cairo, 3d, says the steamer Isetta, from the Tennessee river, reports that as the gunboats Tyler and Lexington, accompanied by the transport Isetta, were approaching Pittsburg, 8 miles above Savannah, on the Tennessee river, on Sunday, they were fired upon by a battery located on a bluff overlooking the river. The gunboats replied for half an hour with shot and shell. At the expiration of that time the battery was silenced, and a force of 80 marines and infantry landed and burned one house, when we were again attacked by a large force of rebels, and compelled to retreat to our boats. Our loss was 1 killed and 3 missing.


The following official account of the fight has been received at Washington.

Cairo, March 3, 1862.

To Hon. Gideon Welles, Secretary of the Navy: Lieut Commanding Shirk has this moment arrived from the Tennessee river and brings full dispatches from Lieut Commanding Gwinn, of the Tyler, a synopsis of which is, that two gunboats proceeded up to Pittsburgh, near the Mississippi line, where a battery was opened on them, consisting of six guns, one of them being rifled, which were soon silenced by the gunboats. Ninety mounted men landed, under cover of the gunboats, and charged upon the enemy, driving them at some distance, until they were strongly reinforced, when our party withdrew to the boats, when three regiments opened upon the gunboats, but were repulsed with great slaughter—the casualties on our side amounting to five killed and missing and five wounded. Lieuts Commanding Gwinn and Shirk, with their commands, have behaved with great gallantry and judgment.1

An election for town officers has just taken place in Hardin county, Tenn., which resulted in two hundred votes for the Union, and thirteen for secession.

A. H. Foote, Flag Officer


The Poisoning of Union Troops.
An Order from Gen. Halleck.

Gen. Halleck, in a general order on Friday, states that sufficient information has been received at headquarters, that the rebels in evacuating Mudtown, Arkansas, poisoned the provisions that they were obliged to abandon, and that 42 officers and men were poisoned by eating the same. He says we cannot retaliate by adopting the same barbarous mode of warfare, nor can we retaliate by punishing the innocent for the guilty. The laws of war forbid this; but the same code authorizes us to retaliate upon the guilty parties. Persons guilty of such acts, when captured, will not be treated as ordinary prisoners of war, nor will they be shot, but suffer the ignominious punishment of being hung as felons. Officers of troops guilty of such acts, although themselves not the advisors or abettors of the crime, will, when captured, be put in irons and conveyed as criminals to headquarters. The laws of war make it their duty to prevent such barbarities; f they neglect their duty they must suffer the consequences.


The public are cautioned against false reports of battles, defeats, etc., put into circulation by stock speculators and designing individuals. Whenever there is any news of importance to the public, or any matter relating to the war, it will be forwarded in an authentic form at the earliest possible moment.

Pay of Deceased Soldiers.

There is no necessity for the relatives of deceased soldiers employing agents to procure their arrearages of pay and submitting to a charge of twenty per cent. or any other per cent. If the person entitled to receive such pay will write to Ezra B. French, Second Auditor in the Treasury Department, Washington, D.C., stating that he is entitled to the arrearages of pay due to a deceased soldier, there will be sent to him printed instructions for making the necessary papers. Or the same information can be obtained by writing to the Adjutant General of the State. We publish this as a matter of necessary caution to those who cannot really afford to surrender to speculating agents any part of the amount legally due them; and we hope that all the papers in the State will repeat the caution.—Woodstock Standard.


Rebel Barbarity.—Jeff. Davis, in his last message, talks of [the] “malignity and barbarity of the Northern States in the prosecution of the war. A singular commentary on this brazen declaration is supplied by the dispatch of Gen. Halleck, announcing that forty-two of our officers and men have been poisoned by eating food which had been drugged and left in their way by the rebels of Arkansas. The Thugs of India could not conduct a war in a more brutal and cowardly way than this. There is nothing like it on record in the modern warfare of civilized nations. It is most honorable to our soldiers, who had thus lost their gallant comrades, that, in spite of the natural abhorrence awakened by such a deed, they refrained from retaliatory measures. We trust that the same restraint may always prevail. The defenders of law and order and right can never lower themselves to the level of assassins, even when most bitterly provoked by the latter.—Boston Journal.


Dead Rebels Found with Their Hands Cut Off.—The following postscript (says the Cincinnati Commercial) was added to a business letter written at Somerset, Kentucky, on the 21st inst.

“Since the Cumberland  river has fallen, forty or fifty dead secesh soldiers have been found with their hands cut off, supposed to have been the act of the fugitives in crossing the river on their memorable retreat, to prevent them from sinking the boats.”


The World’s Fair.—The British steamship Stella left New York on Tuesday with the chief part of the American contributions to the World’s Fair. There were about 300 parcels weighing in the aggregate nearly 150 tons, and comprising a great variety of our most ingenious and useful inventions.


The Richmond Examiner acknowledges that the federal victories in Tennessee bring out a strong Union feeling in Richmond. It says: “We learn that a man went through this city Tuesday morning, trying to sell $60,000 worth of dry goods, still in Philadelphia, to be delivered in Richmond in ten days. Another is said to have gone up to a gentleman in the Second Market, Tuesday morning, and slapping him on the back, said, ‘Ah, ha! What do you think now? I thought you said we could not subjugate you?’ We have no doubt many similar instances have occurred which have not reached our ears.”

8, 1862

A Great Step Taken.

The initiatory step in the gradual obliteration of Negro slavery from the American continent was nobly taken in President Lincoln’s message to Congress. Historians will specify the date, March 6th, 1862, of the first real movement of the American Executive towards the obliteration of slavery. It is a great State paper, and President Lincoln evidently appreciated the grandeur of the step he has deliberately taken. Tens of thousands of petitions to Congress for something of this nature have been presented; and hundreds of thousands of prayers have gone up from honest hearts to the throne of the Almighty for his aid in this same cause; but never, until now, did the head of the nation take the initiatory step in the same direction. The President carefully respects the rights of the States, and keeps within the constitution of the United States and the Union, while broaching plans that will encourage and facilitate emancipation in the border States, and will thus, in time, efface slavery from the Union. For a time, the reputation of Abraham Lincoln has been under a cloud, especially with men who thought the war did not move fast enough, and that we were beggaring the nation for no substantial end. The people hated to see their millions go, and have nothing to show for their money. But, if we can, by taking advantage of the present peculiar state of things, bring about a radical and permanent, even if gradual and distance, advancement of the nation’s real interests, then there is something for statesmanship to strive for; there is a great practical good to be gained, such as haunted the great mind of Cavour for years before he was able to realize it in united Italy. Let no man call a politician’s business an ignoble scramble for place and power, merely; if the politician has a particle of political philosophy, he can see, through all the clouds and scratching thorns of the contest, a real benefit to his nation that will animate him throughout the vulgar squabbles of party. If Lincoln can set this slavery problem in the way of adjustment, he may well content his ambition with that fear.

Among other good results, Europe will now see that we are in earnest in getting rid of slavery, as fast as we can honorably do it. We wish to break no fundamental principles of our constitution, and yet to crush the hydra-headed monster that has so long troubled us. We trust Congress will second Mr. Lincoln’s wishes. The foreign ministers now at Washington, who are independent and at the same time good judges of what a statesman should be, say we have not had such a man as Lincoln in the President’s chair for twenty years. Sagacious, yet eminently simple in his heart and mind, he sees the truth clearly, and seizes, with remarkable tact, the precise nick of time for the annunciation of his plans. Lincoln is coming out all right; take our word for it! Nobody who writes such quaint and homely sentences, vital with truths in every syllable—terse and yet perfectly intelligible—can belong to the ordinary run of American politicians.


Activity still prevails on the Lower Potomac. A brisk fire was opened by our flotilla Thursday morning upon the rebel forces at Aquia Creek, who were discovered by some of our gunboats to be there in force. The alarm was instantly given through the rebel camps, and the long roll resounded from Aquia Creek along the river to Evansport, showing that the rebel forces in that direction have been greatly augmented within a few days past.

From Fortress Monroe—Accident to the Mississippi.

Fortress Monroe, March 6.—The steamer Mount Vernon arrived yesterday afternoon. She reports a serious accident to the steamer Mississippi, which sailed hence with troops and General Butler aboard, a few days since for Ship Island. On Friday morning last, the Mississippi ran on Frying Pan Shoal, staving a hole in her bows. She was hauled off in the afternoon by the Mount Vernon and proceeded Saturday afternoon. The Mississippi has water-tight compartments and probably reached Port Royal Saturday, where the troops can be disembarked and the damage repaired. Her captain, named Bulton, is suspected of intentionally running her ashore. The vessel was placed in charge of one of the officers of the Mount Vernon who will take her to her destination. The Mount Vernon left Wilmington Monday.

The Fernandina was still there. The sloop of war Jamestown was blockading New Inlet. The State of Georgia, Gemsbok and Albatross were at Beaufort.

The British schooner British Queen was captured by the Mount Vernon on Friday, while attempting to run the blockade. She was sent to Philadelphia and her crew brought here. The Constitution sailed to-day.


The Hartford Press professes to be delighted with President Lincoln’s Message, and commends it “to any who have feared the President did not comprehend the crisis.” We know not any who have been louder in venting just such criticisms than the Press and its affiliated sheets. The ground taken by the President’s Message differs totally from the ground taken by Senator Sumner and the sweeping emancipationists of the Tribune and Independent. President Lincoln’s step is a legislative measure for compensated emancipation; radicals of the Tribune sort have been clamoring for uncompensated emancipation, and sweeping confiscation acts, under the war power, by the Executive or his generals. Let us see how long such papers as the Tribune and Press adhere to the ground occupied by the Administration. We do not expect them to fight under the Administration banner, more than three weeks at a time.


The army correspondents of the Chicago and Cincinnati Journals, tell us to look out for an immediate movement against Memphis. Much of the Union force intended for the now no longer needed demonstration against Columbus, is to be brought into requisition for it. An immense number of these troops would seem to be still pouring down the Tennessee and Cumberland, but no body knows what is their real strength or what they are going to do, or if knowing, publication is strictly forbidden.

1 This skirmish was the First Battle of Pittsburg Landing (or Shiloh), and the Isetta was not present nor were there any mounted Union troops and only a single regiment of rebels (the 18th Louisiana under Col. Alfred Mouton) with “elements” of the 2nd Mississippi Cavalry. Similarly, it was sailors (not marines) who were landed from the gunboats along with soldiers of the 32nd Indiana Infantry. See for the full story.

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