JANUARY 24, 1864

Home Industry.

As the time is at hand when families are making their plans and preparation for the ensuing year, we deem it appropriate to offer a suggestion. Much more than heretofore, should house keepers and farmers make their arrangements for meeting all their wants by home industry and enterprise.

It will not do to rely on importations. Already the blockade has closed all our Atlantic ports, except Wilmington; and twenty grim steamers lie like watchers off the mouth of the Cape Fear, like so many grimalkins at a mouse hole.1 We shall have no reason to be disappointed or surprised if the port of Wilmington should be closed ere many months. Nor must we rely on our factories. Look how the prices of their products have already ascended, until they have become unpurchasable by the multitude. This is all according to “the laws of trade” we are told, and therefore to be approved and applauded; but a protection must be found, and it is to be found in home production. Besides, the number of these mills have been reduced by fire, and the machinery of those that remain will not last forever.

A hundred reasons combine to urge upon ever family to look to its own resources. The hand car and the hand-loom and the spinning wheel, whose music is sweeter far than that of the piano, should be found everywhere. All who can should grow their patches of flax and cotton. All should have sheep, if but a few. Our forests furnish dyes as various and as bright as the tints that make their foliage so glorious at “the turn of the leaf.” With these materials, there is no reason why our ladies should not be clad in beautiful apparel, the product of their own industry and taste; while they may clothe their husbands and sons fine enough as kings. There is not a farmer’s wife who may not easily provide clothing for all her servants, and make some to sell besides.

And how much more independent and happy should we all be, if thus providing for ourselves. A pig for blockades, we might well exclaim; nor would be be any longer exposed to the extortioner’s grip. And those eventualities of the future to which we have alluded would bring no terror to us. Eminently, therefore, do we advise every one to use every means and make every arrangement in his power to provide for the clothing of his family from his own resources, and thus make himself independent of manufacturers and blockaders.–Richmond Sentinel.


Siege of Charleston.—The enemy commenced some experimental firing Thursday morning, with the one hundred pounder Parrott shells, fixed with time fuses, so as to explode at some height in the air over the city. It was continued for about two hours, after which they again renewed their usual fire of the Wiard and percussion cap shells. One hundred and three shells in all were fired at the city from half-past five o’clock Wednesday evening to half-past five Thursday afternoon. We have heard of no casualties. The reported killing of a private of Capt. Chichester’s company, published in Thursday morning’s issue, has since been authoritatively contradicted. The private mentioned was only slightly wounded and knocked down insensible, but quickly recovered.

There was no other news of interest. The fleet remained at the usual anchorage. All was quiet at Sumter.–Courier, Thursday.

The Coming Storm.
[From the London Times, Dec. 4.]

At no time since the Italian war have vague anticipations of coming change been more general than during the past fortnight. Since the refusal of England to join the Congress, the disquiet has increased. The refusal is in itself a rebuff, and Lord Russell has now the art to make disagreeable communications less unpleasing by any sweetness of diction. People have, therefore, been ready to see in all that takes place the first gusts and drops of the coming storm. It is presumed that the Emperor is offended; that he must turn from England to some more accommodating ally. Hints of reconciliation with Russia are given. Baron Budberg is said to have been invited to Compiegne in terms of especial distinction, and Gen. Fleury is to pay a mysterious visit to St. Petersburg. What is to be done, no one pretends to know; but every one fancies that the present state of affairs cannot last. There is oppression in the silence: a sense of pain in the uneasy peacefulness of the hour. Such is the state of nervousness and tremor into which the French people have brought themselves by unmerited draughts of glory. Without a single real cause of quarrel in Europe, except with Russia–and with her they talk of an alliance–the French, whether patriots and politicians, or mere father of families, whether ready for new wars or deprecating in secret the restlessness of the Imperial temper, all agree in a vague foreboding that something is to occur. If they analyze the causes of these anticipations, they can only say that the Emperor must have designs, or he would not have gone so far; that having gone so far, he must go further; that France is dissatisfied, that the equilibrium of Europe is unstable; that the treaties of 1815 are antiquated; that humanity wants regeneration; that the nations want restoration–and so forth through all the political commonplaces of the times.

The London Times on the War.

The London Times reminds those who anticipate an early break-down of the Confederate cause, that conquest in the field must be succeeded by military occupation. President Lincoln proposes on Republican principles to vest the Government of each seceded State in one-tenth of the population, who will swear allegiance to him and obedience to his acts of Congress and proclamation. These men will be no more able to maintain themselves than were the thirty tyrants of Athens without the aid of the Lacedamonian garrison. They will form a detested oligarchy like the Mormons in Saxon England–only they will rule over men more brave and warlike than themselves. Even when the North has surrendered her liberty and beggared her finances, she will not be able permanently to hold her immense countries and keep their hostile populations on these terms. The Times adds that, “though we conceive it to be quite possible that, overborne by constantly recruited numbers and immense resources, the South may become unable to retain large armies in the field, yet between that and subjugation there is an interval which we do not expect to see filled up.”

JANUARY 25, 1864

From Rebel Sources.

New York, Jan. 24.

The Times contains a translation of a letter from a Frenchman, formerly in the rebel army, dated Richmond 11th inst., to a friend here. He reports the arrival of another agent from the French Emperor named Mantigny via Nassau, and his mysterious conferences with Jeff Davis. It is known, he says, that Jeff has promised to recognize the Empire in Mexico, and promised France all the advantages of the Southern Confederacy if Napoleon would recognize and support the Southern cause. All our principal men, he says, think therefore that war between France and the United States is near at hand.

The writer has no doubt that the plan of making Gen. Lee dictator will be adopted, as the only means to counteract the strength of the north. Lee has expressed his willingness to accept it.

The news from Charleston, the writer says, is discouraging. Beauregard has expressed the opinion that he would not hold Charleston much longer, as Gen. Gilmore’s guns were in a position to reduce it to ashes in a few hours.

Bread riots occur almost daily in the South, and the people are disgusted with the war.

John Morgan has been given command of Magruder’s army.

The writer concludes by saying that the days of the Southern Confederacy are numbered, and the back-bone broken.

The Herald’s special dispatch, dated headquarters Western Virginia, Jan. 24, has the following:

“We have captured a rebel mail bag. The secrets of the mail bag are curious and interesting, and in one or two instances highly important. Almost all of the letters contain remarks on the President’s proclamation of amnesty. The sufferings anticipated in rebeldom, the dissatisfaction of the citizens of the South, complaints of the soldiers, the manner in which rebel officers high in position are spoken of, etc., all serve in very many respects to confirm the reports in circulation in the northern papers regarding the condition of the Confederacy. One lady in replying to another says: ‘Your description of the present pains me; I had hoped for better things! It is true we are despondent, but our hope for the future is still strong.’ ”


How the Money Goes.—It is known that certain steamers used by the government for transportation purposes have been paid for as many a ten or fifteen times over, and are still being paid for at the same or hardly less exorbitant rate. There is now a claim before the authorities for paying for one of these steamers, lost through the carelessness or deign of her captain; and it can be proved in this case that, while $11,000 would have been an ample price for the boat, over $200,000 have actually been paid for her. This vessel was run ashore and lost, and the owners are now trying to recover $12,000, her alleged value.


From Chattanooga.

Chattanooga, Jan. 23.

Trains are running regularly between Nashville and this place.

Col. McCallem has arrived here with 1000 mechanics and laborers, and the work of rebuilding the railroad to Knoxville will be commenced at once.

Supplies are accumulating, and quartermasters commenced issuing full rations to-day.

A large number of veteran volunteers have left the army, but the balance of power is maintained by raw recruits from the North and deserters from the South. Seven hundred recruits came down this morning. On Monday last 150 rebel deserters, and to-day a squad of 14 rebels, came in.

The rebel army which holds the post at Dalton is believed to number 30,000 men. The Tennessee and Kentucky troops are camped in the centre under guard. It is positively known that the rebel soldiers are killing their best mules for subsistence.

Gen. Grant came to the front this morning. No demonstrations have recently been made by the rebels.

Plain Talk in North Carolina.

The Raleigh, N. C., Standard, commenting upon the speech of Mr. Brown in the rebel Senate favoring a sweeping conscription law and the imposition of burdensome taxes, uses the following plain language:

“We tell Mr. brown and those who think with him once for all that if the desperate revolutionary measures which he advocates shall be attempted to be carried out; if the civil law is to be trampled under foot by the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus, and every able-bodied man placed in the army from sixteen to sixty-five; if no man is to have a hearing before a State judge as to the right of the enrolling officer to seize him, and if the rights of the States are to be ignored and swept away by the mere creatures of the States, the common government, the people of North Carolina will take their own affairs into their own hands, and will proceed in convention assembled to vindicate their liberties and their privileges. They will not submit to a military despotism. They will not submit to the destruction of their rights, personal and civil, in this or any other war. We say what we know to be so. A vast majority of our people are restless and excited on account of the threatened encroachments upon their liberties by the Congress at Richmond; and we must respectfully and earnestly warn the members of that body not to kindle a flame which no effort can extinguish. Pass these measures; suspend the habeas corpus, in order to silence our courts and force our whole population into the army; break faith with the principles of substitutes, repudiate the currency of the country; levy a tax in specie to pay the interest of the funded debt; continue in full operation the tithing and impressment laws at the same time, do these things, Mr. Brown, and the people of North Carolina will rise in their majesty and assert their sovereignty. There is no power to prevent them from doing this; and woe to the official character who shall attempt to turn the arms of Confederate soldiers against the people of this State. North Carolina will not be the slave of either the Congress at Richmond or Washington. She is this day, as she had been from the first, the keystone of the Confederate arch. If that stone should fall the arch would tumble.”

The above, from so influential a paper in the old North State is very significant. It betokens that the people of that State have not lost their ideas of liberty and love of it and that if the rebel leaders attempt to enforce the measures which they propose and which seem indispensable to keep the bogus confederacy on its legs for another year, the people there will resist, and will in convention cut themselves adrift from the confederacy and enforce the separation at the point of the bayonet if need be. In parts of the State the people are already very much aroused. They hold meetings in which the rebel leaders are boldly denounced and a return to the old Union openly advocated.

The plain policy of our federal authorities is to encourage this movement and to assure the masses of the people of that and other revolted States that on returning to their allegiance to the Constitution and Union they shall be protected in their freedom and their rights as in days gone by. The condition of public sentiment in North Carolina is evidently ripe for it and a wise policy would now break the unity of the rebellion, destroy its power and speedily restore peace and Union.


We notice an unusual number of vehicles slipping around town without bells. Everything on runners should make a jingle.2


What it is to be on Short Rations and Scant Clothing.
A Graphic Sketch of Hungry Men and Hungry Mules.

The Chicago Tribune publishes a graphic letter from East Tennessee, written by a soldier. It combines, to a remarkable extent, features serious and comic, all too faithfully representing the hardship of our brave boys in that region. The letter, which bears the date of the 2d inst., is as follows:

“I take this opportunity of writing a few lines to you informing you of my perfect state of health.

 ‘I am bully,’ thank God. I wish I could say as much of our poor men, many of whom have not enough to cover their nakedness, and some without coats.

“You may judge of their condition when I tell you: for their New Year’s feast for twenty-four hours they had 2½ ounces of corn meal per man, and the day before a little fresh meat and one cracker to the man. The weather for the last three days has been so cold that it was almost impossible for them to sleep at all. You can get up at any time in the night and see the poor fellows crowded around the little bivouac fires while two or three comrades lie as near to the fire as possible, wrapped in the blankets of the whole party (probably three in all.) It puts one more in mind of Napoleon’s retreat from Moscow than anything that I can think of.

“The fact is, you cannot imagine the distress of the men until a person has seen for himself. But all praise to the men themselves! They bear their misfortunes like veterans and true soldiers, ready to sacrifice themselves on the altar of their country. But pass around among the men, as I often do, and they will say, in a very pitiful tone–such as you can imagine a hungry man will use–‘I am hungry’–no other complaint from their lips. What can I do? Poor boys! I have no means of helping them. All I can do is pull my hat over my eyes, to keep them from seeing the tears that start from them, and pass on, wishing Jeff Davis and his crew in hell and I in command. I would put him through a system of tactics that the chivalry have been unaccustomed to up to the present day.

As for myself personally, I have a d---l of an appetite, and can eat anything which comes my way. The variety is now reduced to ‘corn flapjacks,’ hard tack, and fresh meat about the consistency of twenty-shilling cowhide boots. I give the ‘hard tack’ the go-by entirely, as I have split a tooth on each side, trying to grind the stuff down. But take it all in all, I am entirely satisfied, and my friends say that I am getting fat. They are welcome to their opinions, but ‘I don’t see it in that light.’

“Gen. Burnside has been relieved by Gen. Foster, lately commanding in North Carolina. I wish ‘Burny’ back to us again; we would not be starving to-day if he were–he is the man who has the right ring about him. This army would go into the very jaws of death for him to-day, if he declared it–they adore him that much. The enemy are in worse condition than we are, judging from the appearance and tales of the numerous deserters that come into our lines.

“My box of clothes which you sent is still in Lexington, Ky; they were in so large a package that the officer could not bring them across the mountains. I am just as glad of it now. The clothes which he did bring were all ate up by the mules on the mountains. Forage gave out with them, and they eat the tongues out of the wagons, spokes out of the wheels, and last but not least, every cussed thing that was in the wagon box–pleasant reflection for a man to see the tail of his $45 overcoat disappearing down a mule’s maw, and then see the bugger keel over and die on account of his gormandizing propensities for rich food.

“I shall answer father’s letter soon, when I get something to write about other than starvation and human misery generally.”

How Rebel Deserters are Branded.—Branding deserters, writes one who has seen the thing done at Richmond, is a beautiful operation, as humane as beautiful. The culprit is fastened to a large table, with his face downwards, and a large “D” is scarred upon his posteriors. In other countries where this punishment is inflicted, a bar of iron with a type or letter on one end of it is used, which, being heated, is applied to the spot to be branded, but a more cruel process and instrument is employed by the chivalry. A plain bar of iron, about an inch in diameter, narrowed down a little at the point, is heated to incandescence, and used as a sign painter would use a brush in lettering, only in a very slow and bungling manner. A greasy smoke with a sickly stench arises, accompanied with crackling sounds and the groans of the victim as the hot iron sinks deep into the flesh. On pretense of rendering the mark of disgrace plain and indelible, but in reality to torture the unfortunate culprit, the hot iron is drawn many times through the wound, making it larger and deeper, until the victim, unable to endure the excruciation longer, faints, and is carried away. The operation is always performed by old Keppard, the executioner of Kellogg, the greatest demon in human form of Pluto’s realms.


The Rebel Troops and Their Desire to Desert.—A correspondent of the New York Herald who has travelled extensively in the South, narrates a visit to the camp of the 1st Virginia regiment, which was stationed at the time within ten miles of Richmond, and commanded by Col. Williams. He says:

The 1st Virginia entered the service nearly 900 strong, and now number only 162 men. 276 had been lost by disease and casualties in the field, and 364 had deserted. This information I received from Col. Williams’ own lips. The regiment has been doing a great deal of picket deal in Lee’s army, and, the chances for desertion being good, the boys made the best of them. To use the Colonel’s own expression, “His boys carried on desertion by wholesale, and yet,” he added, “I cannot blame them much; men can’t live on air and fight day after day on empty stomachs. Very few of my men have any Negroes; so they have nothing to gain by our triumph, and take no interest in the war. If brought in the face of the enemy they will fight; pride will drive them to this; and, besides, it is safer to fight than to stand still and be fired at. But we cannot expect our men to be satisfied until we can put them on full rations and make our money good for something.” Still the Colonel is a strong rebel, and is for fighting to the last.

JANUARY 27, 1864


Interesting from the South.
[Correspondence of The St. Louis Republican.]

Memphis, January 17, 1864.

I have had a conversation with some refugees (civilians), just arrived here from Dixie. They report the northern part of Mississippi filled with bands of confederate troops and guerrillas, who are busy collecting forage and conscripting. They are preparing for a final struggle in the spring, and that struggle will be in Northern Georgia Vast quantities of corn are scattered along the line of railroad in Mississippi, which is intended for the use of the confederate army.

The confederates, to the number of four thousand, under Ross, are scattered along the Mississippi, from Bolivar to Greenville. They have six pieces of artillery, and it appears to be their intention to fire into steamers, and prevent trade with the people on both sides of the river. There are also two thousand on the Arkansas side, who act in concert with Ross. On the 7th inst., they fired three shots into the steamer Delta, near Greenville, two shots taking effect. One shot carried away her rudder, and one shell exploded in her cabin, wounding a Negro. The boat managed to escape out of range. The ram Horner was fired into near the same place. She was hit several times, but escaped with slight injury. The Emma and Belle Creole were also fired into, but fortunately no one was hurt.

Rebel papers speak in glowing terms of the success of Forrest in getting conscripts and volunteers in West Tennessee. They put the number at 10,000, and one even goes as high as 25,000.

One of the refugees says he left the capital of the Confederate States on Monday morning, the 28th of December, en route to cross the rebel lines by way of Wilmington, Mobile, and thence up the Mobile and Ohio Railroad to Okalona, Miss. He reached Atlanta, Ga., in time to witness the reception of Gen. Johnston by the citizens of that place. Be assured that great demonstrations were made in behalf of this notorious gentleman, in bitter denunciations of his unworthy and incapable predecessor, Gen. Braxton Bragg, by this blind and deluded populace.

The rebels throng the city in large crowds, at least the gold-lace portion of them, paying their rebellious respects to Mr. J. Davis and others of the grave functionaries of the so-called Confederate States.

Aside from this, on the other hand, will be witnessed the most solemn scenes. Every house is a hospital, whose inmates are suffering most intensely under treatment of inefficient boy surgeons, from disgraceful diseases, a large majority of whom will scarcely be fit for service within the next twelve months, if then.

The demoralization of the women is a marked characteristic in Richmond under the present condition of affairs. The absence of those who should protect and support them, and the presence of licentious men who are themselves removed from the restraints of good society and family influences, has caused the fall of multitudes of those who would have been amiable and virtuous ornaments of society. The consequences of this state of things are most frightful.

He then passed on to North Carolina, to the City of Wilmington. Perfect confidence in the wonted success and independence of their rebellious government is unanimously entertained among those who are expecting favor from Jeff Davis.

Next he came on to Augusta, Ga., where he found Bragg’s army completely demoralized and scattered throughout the entire country. Some of them could be seen with their empty knapsacks and ragged garments, all along the line of railroad, and upon inquiry they will tell you that they are taking “French furlough,” and were going home, regardless of consequences.->

At this point it is the intention of the government to concentrate all forces possible to wipe out Grant’s army. Those forces who can be spared from Charleston, Wilmington, Mobile, Montgomery and other places, will probably be sent there, including the prisoners who were taken and paroled at Vicksburg and Port Hudson. At this point he states that there is very little confidence in the currency of the country, board being worth only $20 per day in the cities, and, of course, the proprietors of these boarding-house dens are amassing enormous fortunes of this worthless trash.

He passed through Mobile, Ala. Here he met heartless speculators, and brawling, shameless women innumerable.

Lastly he embarked for Okalona, stopping for a day at Meriden, which is a military post commanded by Brig. Gen. Cockril, of the First Missouri brigade, which is there encamped. He was informed by an unsuspecting gentleman that there were perhaps 5,000 troops there. On the Southern Railroad at Brandon, Jackson and Canton, there were reported to be between 7,000 and 8,000 infantry and cavalry. At Grenada, Oxford and Panola, there were also reported to be 8,000 cavalry, under command of Richardson and Forrest, respectively–the whole commanded by Stephen B. Lee.

At Okalona he found Gen. Ferguson encamped with a reported force of 5,000 cavalry, and perhaps two regiments of paroled prisoners from Port Hudson, who are declared by the rebel authorities to have been exchanged, and have already been supplied with arms.

In all there are somewhere in the neighborhood of 80,000 troops in West Mississippi. But it is evidently the intention of the rebels to concentrate as large a force as possible in this section of the country, in order to invade West Tennessee the coming Spring, for the purpose of drawing as much as possible Grant’s attention from the movements of Johnston at Dalton.

Along the railroad from the Alabama line, he noticed an enormous amount of corn in rail pens, completely exposed to the weather, being without roofing.


One of Morgan’s Men Released by Rebel Sympathizers.

New York, January 26.

One of Morgan’s men, who escaped about three months ago from the Ohio Penitentiary, worked his way down to Kentucky, where he was arrested and imprisoned by a deputy of the U. S. Marshal. Learning of the fact, several secession sympathizers banded together a few nights since, broke open the jail and carried him off amid the wildest shouts of triumph. He has not yet been retaken.


How Prices are Raised.—Congress proposes a duty on cotton of two cents a pound, whereupon all the small dealers in spool cotton propose to advance the price one cent upon each spool. Now as a pound of cotton will make one hundred spools of sewing cotton, it is not easy to appreciate the justice of this large advance in the price of a very necessary and important article in daily use. But, while it is not easy to appreciate this fact, it is but characteristic of eh advance in prices upon two-thirds of the articles in daily use. Just hint at a tax of any kind, and forthwith the price is put up 10, 20, 30, 50 and 100 per cent. The rule is to put up the price once the tax is proposed, and once more when it is raised. And if the duty fails, the price is kept up.–World.


War Items and Incidents.

The 59th Massachusetts regiment, (4th Veterans, Col. J. P. Gould) is now rapidly filling up. It offers the highest authorized bounties–$725 to veterans and $625 to new recruits. They are located at Camp Meigs, Readville, in new barracks, with two large stoves in each; the rations are abundant and of the best quality; and a full supply of warm clothing is issued immediately to the recruits. The men receive furloughs in turn, and the camp is always accessible to the friends of the soldiers. The regiment is composed of first class men, and in no respect is excelled by any infantry organization now forming in the State. An excellent military band of twenty-two pieces has been for some time attached to the 59th.

A letter from the 13th regiment, dated on the 20th instant, states that during the previous week seventy-nine rebel deserters came into our lines where that regiment was on picket duty, and about as many contrabands. The deserters say that many more men would leave the confederate armies and come over, were it not that the impression is sedulously cultivated by their officers that as soon as they do so they will be impressed into the Union army, after which, if caught by the Confederates, their death is certain.

At Gettysburg 27,000 muskets were taken. Of these, 24,000 were found to be loaded, 12,000 containing two loads, and 6000 from three to ten loads each. In numerous instances half a dozen balls were driven in on a single charge of powder. In some cases the former possessor had reversed the usual order, placing the ball at the bottom of the barrel and the powder on top.

Hon. Ezra Cornell of Ithaca, N. Y., thought the ladies of the Soldiers’ Aid Society could work more if they talked less. He accordingly proposed to give fifty dollars to the Society if twelve of the ladies would sew all day without speaking. Fifteen tried it, and only one proved a defaulter under continued trial.

The Herald dispatch, dated Headquarters, Department, West Virginia, Jan. 26, says that Gen. Sullivan has just informed Gen. Kelly from Harper’s Ferry, that his scouts have returned with Richmond papers of the 22d inst. These papers say that Jeff. Davis’ house was robbed and fired. This is very significant. The fire was discovered in time to save the building.

Col. Thoburn reports having information of a highly important and satisfactory character. It relates to the good workings of the president’s amnesty proclamation among the rebels in arms and those who have heretofore been rebel sympathizers, but who are not now in the army. Jeff. Davis’ sweeping conscription law has given rise to this new state of feeling. Everything looks cheering in this department.

Major Quinlan of the 1st New York cavalry, who commands the scouts, reports that bands of men are forming to resist the rebel conscription.


The Coal Supply.—The Philadelphia papers represent that the coal companies are busily enlarging their facilities in every direction, sinking new shafts, building new cars, and opening new roads, and the product of coal in 1864 will be largely increased. Not only Pennsylvania capitalists, but those of New England and New York are actively engaged in mining enterprises. It is also stated that some of the coal companies have secured a number of operatives from the British Provinces, and have dismissed the more unruly and rapacious workmen, whose inordinate demands went so far beyond what was reasonable or equitable. The price of coal must fall.

Pre-emption for Freedmen.—The following, from the Washington Chronicle, may not be generally understood:

“Under the auspices of the Secretary of the Treasury and by the authority of the President of the United States, the lands purchased by the Government at the tax sale of last February, in the Department of the South, have been survey and divided into tracts of 320 acres. Every alternate tract has been subdivided into lots of twenty acres, and reserved for the occupancy of colored men. Here they are entitled to settle and acquire a pre-emption claim, which they can easily make a fee simple title to part of the soil on which they once worked as a class.”


A Great Hog Raid.—A private letter from Chaplain S. S. Hunting, dated Loudon, Kentucky, Dec. 6, gives a ludicrous description of a hog expedition to East Tennessee.

Twenty thousand hogs were driven from Lexington towards Knoxville (distance two hundred miles). They were fat hogs, driven over this terrible mud road. It was expected that salt could be got at Knoxville, so the hogs could be killed and packed there.

When the advance of this swinish multitude had reached a point within 15 miles of Knoxville, it was discovered that Longstreet had invested Knoxville, and the scouts of his army made a cavalry charge and captured forty hog, which the drivers, however, recaptured by their well-known call. The order came to turn the hogs back. “Right about, wheel!” The words passed along the immense lines; they grunted “aye” but being fat they were only able to turn at an angle, and retreat to another gap in the mountains. But back they came, one hundred and eighty miles, over rocks and mud, squealing, grunting, wallowing back, back even to Lexington, where the advance now is, and where the porcine travellers are soon to be slaughtered and packed.

The principal evil arising from this great movement of pigs is not the $100,000 expense to the Government, but the literal eating up of all the corn of the country. Only think of 20,000 grunters foraging forty days in this almost wilderness! For thirty miles around Loudon only a few farmers have an ear of corn to give a horse, and it is still worse on towards Cumberland Gap. The hog drivers had scoured the country for a distance of ten miles on each side of the road in order to obtain forage, and when they could not buy corn for money, they would pay in hogs.

As the Union and rebel armies have pretty nearly cleaned out the swine by their impressment from friend and foe, the mountaineers willingly traded with the pig-drivers, giving “hominy” for “hog!” These poor people, who have heretofore always raised enough to eat of their simple far, (hoe cake and ham,) find themselves now obliged to pay $2.25 a bushel for corn, or move away.


29, 1864

England and the Privateers.
Letter from Prof. H. W. Newman.

Sir: We are already engaged in two formidable wars–in New Zealand and in Japan. We are not clear of a third in China. We look on with alarm at the violent proceedings in Germany, against Denmark, not knowing how we may be implicated in that quarter. Apparently through fear, and nothing else, we allow Russia to violate the treaty of 1856, and to set up a war fleet in the Black Sea, capturing our merchant ships if they attempt to trade with the Circassians. I say it is apparently through fear, for no one considers our recent Asiatic wars, or the zeal with which the Ministry sprang to arms in the matter of the Trent will easily impute it to humanity that Lords Palmerston and Russell wink at the breach of treaty involved in the Russian blockade.

With such an atmosphere of war around us I cannot believe that this or any English Minister would covet American enmity, not to say American war. It is true at the crisis of Northern weakness they breathed flames and scoffed at arbitration, even after learning officially that President Lincoln had not authorized the act of Capt. Wilkes, and was open to friendly representations. Yet, before the disunion, no English Ministry was ever so brave in a matter for which bravery was far more urgently needed. I refer to the systematic outrages committed at Charleston, Mobile, and all the principal ports of the Southern States, against our colored seamen; outrages which if committed in Burma or Japan, would have been promptly replied to by a high-handed war.

Why do I recall this? Partly in order to show that the charge of being for “peace at any price” rests rather on others than on those who say, “Let us do justice and claim justice firmly, but let us as little as possible, and as late as possible, make justice by violence.” Still more, I refer to the past as a clue to the future. When the intestine war shall be closed no English Ministry will regard the enmity of the United States as anything but a formidable calamity. If in the past we did not dare, for the defence of colored seamen, to encounter a war in which the conscience of the whole North would have been  with us, much less in the future will any Ministry rush into war in vindication of our pirate ships, when England will have a bad conscience and be divided against itself, while the whole Union will be of one heart and mind.

It is not a day too early to take this to heart. While I write, the cry of one more English meeting for justice to Poland rises in my ears. Russia is made obstinate by a belief that she can use the “neutral” ground of the United States as a “naval base” against us by our own recent and fatal precedent. The newspapers of St. Petersburg avow what is clear of itself. The Russian fleet is gone to America, in order to sail from American ports against our merchant ships, if we dare to take up arms for Poland. If President Lincoln be but coldly neutral and allows to Russian ships just as much favor as English ports have shown to Confederate cruisers, in case of an Anglo-Russian war, the Russian fleet will not want for water and provisions, nor their stammers want coal.

In a distant sea they will not to cripple their force by sending back prizes to Admiralty Courts; they may (it seems) burn our merchant ships without award of court. Such are the new precedents established by English Ministry who had it in their power to gain for traders on [the] sea the same immunities during war as are enjoyed by traders on land. Evidently a new dread of the Russian fleet is mischievously superadded to the former difficulties of Europe. ->

Against President Lincoln’s Government we committed (as I believe) a sin of principle when the Queen was advised to recognize as belligerents on the ocean those who were not belligerents on the ocean; those whose war was wholly land war, not touching us; whom, moreover, we knew to be no insurgents in a good cause, but traitors in the worst of causes.

When England declared herself neutral between a righteous Government and a power seeking to exist for the sole sake of propagating Slavery, and thereby gave to the latter gratuitously an enormous advantage and great moral encouragement, our very best friends at the North became violently indignant. But badly as they regard us to have behaved in this matter, they forget our first offenses in comparison with the second–that our neutrality had been unfaithful, and is unfaithful to this day. Only yesterday I read in the columns of The Star of two more American ships burnt by the “English” pirate Alabama. Why is it not seized in the first English port which it dares enter? By all these events we are laying up evil and quarrel for the future.

It is astonishing how few Englishmen are aware that England is liable to repay every shilling of damage done to American commerce by these violences. We ourselves first advanced the law and practically applied it against America. In 1793 President Washington, on the representation of the English Ambassador, did what he could to prevent the fitting out of privateers to aid France; and not only restored British vessels which had been captured, but proclaimed that “the Government of the United States held itself responsible to indemnify British owners for such captures.” This stood upon the general moral rights of nations, there being then no Foreign Enlistment Act in the United States.

But in 1794, immediately after the application of the British Government, Congress passed such a law as satisfied us; and the President, with the concurrence of the Senate, made a treaty with England, of which one clause secured indemnity to British owners for vessels captured by ships fitted out in the United States. And all damages were faithfully repaid to us. With such a precedent, it is morally impossible for any American Government to fail to exact repayment for all the violences committed by the ships fitted out in England, even if some of them have since contrived to steal into a Confederate port. A sore point of quarrel must remain, which, even if it does not end in war, will visit us with weakness and an enormous expense.

[Professor Newman goes on to show that it would be better to pay the bill of damage caused by these cruisers at once, and put a stop to the business, than allow an account (which he thinks must ultimately be paid), to go on doubling. We print this important article to show the view taken of this unfortunate question by at least one Englishman of intelligence.]3

JANUARY 30, 1864


An Affecting Incident.

“O, would that I were a boy again,”

but not a Newport boy of the present day and generation, for we saw yesterday a worthy citizen of that ancient seaport, who wears and graces the prefix of “Hon.” with a bundle of one dozen “cowhides;” not tanned for the reparation of juvenile Newporters’ soles, but carefully cured and tightly twisted for the “tanning” of their bodies/ What doleful memories of youthful days, (when neither the rod nor out tender cuticle was spared,) revived at the sight of that bundle of horrors! Our flesh quivers at the recollection of that old brick school house, where the stalwart arm of the school master graced one end of a similar weapon, and our trembling for the other. But that was many years ago, and with the light of modern civilization shining full upon us, we supposed all such relics of the dark ages as obsolete as the whipping post, the stocks and the branding iron. But alas! barbarism still lingers on our sea coast. “And cow hides still wave / O’er the backs of the free, and the bones of the brave.” Twelve raw-hides! expressly ordered by the School Committee for the flagellation of their youthful charges. What briny tears, what quivering nerves, what discolored flesh shall be evoked by the touch of those twelve magic wands! How deftly are they constructed: thick and hard at the butt, to give the firmer grasp; slim and tapering at the point to give the sharper tingle. And then with what diabolical malice are they gaily painted in red and green, blue and yellow. As though vermilion could heal the bruised flesh, gamboge dry up the falling tear, or chrome green calm the trembling nerve!

In the name of common humanity and the rising generation, we protest against these relics of barbarism. We invoke the interposition of the School Commissioner. Is moral suasion dead? Are the youthful successors of Coddington and his associates so hardened by salt air, and so infected with disobedience, that they must be inoculated with such vaccine virus? Did the peaceful cows, which yielded up their coverings for this fell purpose, yield at the same time no milk of human kindness?

We appeal to the worthy School Committee of Newport. Revoke your direful order or sell those cowhides to some cattle-drover. Stripe not the back of young Newport, or ye may see stars.

Let them not fish for eels on Long Wharf, nor play hockey on Trouro Park, nor bathe their young limbs in ocean’s brine, nor fleece reluctant shillings from unwary visitors. Do any or all of these things, but for mercy’s sake don’t cowhide the boys!

The above is from the Providence Journal of Wednesday, and it does not require much of a Yankee to guess who the author is, for friend Rodman will have his say when Newport or its “boys” are in danger of being ill-used. We do not believe that our boys are more rude than those of other cities, but one school seems to possess an uncommon share of stubbornness and the right man has not been found to master it. When under the charge of Mr. Marsh the boys were obedient, but recently his school has been divided and new teachers employed. ->

The first teacher was roughly handled and the second one finds some thorns in his path, and the Committee think that the boys should be made to learn that obedience is as necessary as a perfect recitation, and adopt the cowhide as a prompter. We have no recollection of receiving punishment in our youthful days from either Misses Williams or Stratton, or Messrs. Rodman, Nichols, Tower, Trevett or Briggs, as we had art enough to keep their good will, but there were punishments inflicted, which in these days would not be tolerated. The position of the teacher is not easy, and but few are possessed of the right qualities to enable them to at once govern and instruct the youth, but we trust the cowhides referred to may be used to embellish the walls of the school room rather than the backs of the pupils.


Fortune Making by Common Seamen.—It has been frequently stated since the war began that many sailors of the navy have succeeded in making their fortunes by prizes. Within the last six weeks the following enormous sums have been paid over by different lawyers and paymasters to sailors. One foretopmen got $6,784; a maintopman got $7,644; two able seamen belonging to the forecastle got nearly $20,000, one receiving $9000 and the other $11,000. Marines have received as high as four thousand dollars, and landsmen have got as much.


Railroad Slaughter.—We estimate that not less than One Thousand persons were either killed or maimed for life on the several rail roads of the loyal States during the last year. Of these, some hundreds were soldiers who had offered their lives for their country’s salvation, but who did not anticipate such a waste of them. And the year 1864 opened with a prospect of large doings in the way of railroad butchery. Two wholesale disasters and at least a dozen smaller accidents have broken the monotony of the first three weeks. At this rate, our too sparse population will have been diminished by the railroads during the coming year to the extent of at least double the loss last year.–N. Y. Tribune.


Multum in Parvo.4

“I will not strike thee,” said a Quaker one day, “but I will let this billet of wood fall on thee.”  And at that precise moment the “bad man” was floored by the weight of a walking stick that the Quaker was known to carry.

A wag says of a woman: To her virtue, we give love; to her beauty, admiration; to her hoops, the whole pavement.

A man who had been fined several weeks in succession for getting drunk, coolly proposed to the judge that he should take him by the year at a reduced rate.

1 A grimalkin is defined as a cat, an old female cat, or an ill-tempered old woman.

2 This is not so that the carriages will make a pretty sound as they pass–it is a safety feature. Unlike today, when we spend millions to clear the snow from our roads, people in a pre-automotive age simply switched from wheeled carriages to sleighs with runners. Snow was actually shovelled onto covered bridges to facilitate their passage. Unfortunately, without the sound of the horses’ hooves striking the ground, such a conveyance was all but silent and gave no warning of its approach. Hence the need to attach sleigh bells.

3 Following the war, United States did, in fact, sue Great Britain for damages caused by the fleet of “Anglo-rebel pirates.” The “violences” caused by the various raiders were subsumed under the name “The Alabama Claims.” British citizens paid taxes to recoup what was awarded the U.S. until 1965–one hundred years after the end of the Slaveholders’ Rebellion.

4 Latin for “much in little.”

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