FEBRUARY 19, 1865
How the Rebel General Lee Stands.
of Gen. Lee’s old friends in Washington are inclined to think that it
would not cost him a great sacrifice of personal feeling to come back
into the old Union and under the legitimate Government.
Everybody knows that Lee went into the rebellion reluctantly, one
might say that he was forced into it by his Virginia friends.
When he was ordered here from Texas in the spring of 1861 he was
somewhat sore upon the subject, but when he stopped at New Orleans he
met old Southern friends who urged him to join be rising South at once.
He indignantly refused, and meeting one of his comrades, an army
officer who had joined a band of armed rebels, he administered a hot
rebuke to him. He returned
to Washington, and went over to Arlington House, where he was in a sense
neglected. On the memorable
Sunday after Sumter had fallen, when the president issued his call for
75,000 three month's volunteers, Mr. Bingham, then a member of Congress
from Ohio, and a friend of Gen. Lee's, (he was colonel then, I believe,)
went to the Secretary of War, Mr. Cameron, and asked him if any one had
sounded Col. Lee respecting his opinions.
Cameron knew nothing of the matter and cared less, so Mr. Bingham went
to see the President. Mr.
Lincoln had no knowledge upon the subject. “Then,” says Bingham,
“it is time that some one could go and see Lee, for I tell you he is
the ablest military officer in the service!” The President had no
objection to Mr. Bingham's going on such an errand himself.
Secretary Cameron thought it would be a very good idea.
So on that bright April Sunday the Republican Congressmen set out
for Arlington House, to seek an interview with Col. Lee, hoping to
strengthen his patriotism and draw him to take sides with the
Government. Upon arriving at
Arlington he found that Col. Lee had left to attend church at
Alexandria. So he followed
him down to the dilapidated old town, and entering the church, saw him
in it participating devoutly in its services.
A second thought induced him to postpone the whole subject till
Monday, thinking that Lee might consider it improper to enter into a
long conversation upon the exciting subject on the Sabbath.
It was a mistake, for that very day, while Lee was in the little
Alexandria church, a telegram was brought to him from Richmond.
He took a special train that night to Richmond, and has never
surrounded by his old Virginia Associates, he could not resist the
appeals to his State pride, and through the terrible struggle fell from
his noble position of a loyal soldier of the Republic into rank treason.
Lee was one of those southern men like Alexander Stephens of Georgia,
who openly acknowledged that there was no cause for a rebellion.
He said so over and over again on his way home from Texas, and he
repeated it in Washington in Arlington.
He has sinned against light and his own conscience, in his
punishment should be severe. Yet
the North has little hatred for him.
He is admired for his soldierly qualities and for his total
abstinence from that ignorant, beast-like ferocity that characterizes
such men as Beauregard, Bragg and Hood.
It will be comparatively easy to pardon such man, but how is it
possible to sit down again in peace with Davis, Benjamin, Beauregard and
the Richmond editors?–Washington
Correspondence of the Springfield (Mass) Republican.
guns cost something. A ten-inch Parrott gun costs $4500; an eleven-inch
Rodman gun costs $6500; a fifteen-inch Krupp gun costs $29,400; a
twelve-inch Blakely gun costs $35,000. The two latter are made of steel.
is stated that in the late memorable conflict at Fort Fisher, the agents
of the United States Sanitary Commission effected a landing on the day
of the battle, and were on the hospital ground with ample supplies
several hours before the wounded arrived.
fare in Washington is the only cheap thing in the place.
You can ride from one end of the city to the other, and get a
transfer to go across town, for five cents.
very cunning case of smuggling on the Canadian border has recently been
detected, for which the law provided no remedy.
It seems that the smuggler built his house immediately upon the
boundary line, with an entrance from the north and another from the
south. He can thus bring
British or American goods into his house without paying duties to either
Government, and can without detection easily pass them over to the other
Germany supplied France with children’s toys of every description. At
present, France supplies Germany. St. Omer, likewise, supplies Germany
with tobacco-pipes as well as with toys, such as soldiers of every arm,
seamen, artillery, fortresses, tents, sentry boxes, trees, shrubs,
represented with extraordinary accuracy and painted with fine
ineffaceable paints. The new industry is a fortunate creation for the
town of St. Omer, where it gives employment to a great number of hands.
machine has been invented in Springfield, Massachusetts, which washes
dishes. It will wash all the
dishes on the table for twelve persons in ten minutes.
of Gen. Terry.–A
gentleman who was present vouches for the following anecdote of the
“Hero of Fort Fisher:”
Terry was a resident of a small town in Connecticut, where he formerly
owned a foundry. One day, six or seven years ago, he was preparing to
cast some large pieces of machinery. After the iron was melted and
everything in readiness to begin the operation, the workmen (some twenty
in number, headed by a big stout fellow,) “struck,” and declared
they would not pour the metal. The moment was a critical one. No time
was to be lost.
instantly grabbed a stout wooden cudgel which lay near, and advancing to
the leader, felled him with a blow. The next one shared his fate, and a
third and a fourth also bit the dust. The rest immediately bolted for
the open air, thinking, doubtless, that prudence counseled a retreat. By
this time the leader regained his feet; Terry settled him again.
Proceeding to the [next] one, he accosted him: “Now, will you help
pour that iron? If not, down you go again.” The man concluded to go to
work. The next two followed his example. By this time the first man had
again recovered a perpendicular, and exclaimed, “T-T-Terry, you’ve
“Well, sir, I meant to hurt you. Now, will you help pour that iron, or
take another blow?”
I guess I’ll p-p-pour.”
immediately took his place in the ranks. Those who sought safety by
flight returned, and the piece was finished in good time and shape.
After it was done, he took them to a hotel and ordered a splendid
supper, and at the same time saying he ought to have killed every one of
them. This illustrates the manner in which he quelled a rebellion in a
MACON DAILY TELEGRAPH (GA)
Our Doom if Conquered.
great and good Dr. Thornwell, since deceased, at the outset of this
dreadful war, thus wrote as to what would be are doom, in case of our
enemies should succeed:
ravages of Louis the XIV in the beautiful valleys of the Rhine, about
the close of the seventeenth century may be taken as a specimen of the
appalling desolation which is likely to over-spread the Confederate
States if the Northern army should succeed in its schemes of its
subjugation and plunder. Europe
was then outraged by atrocities inflicted by Christians upon the
Christians, more fears and more cruel and even Mahometans could have had
the heart to perpetrate. Private
dwellings were raised to the ground, fields laid waste, cities burnt,
churches demolished, and the fruits of industry wantonly and ruthlessly
to destroyed. But three days
of grace were allowed to the wretched inhabitants to flee their country,
and in a short time, the historian tells us, "the roads and fields,
which then lay deep in snow, were blackened by innumerable multitudes of
men, women, and children flying from their homes.
Many died of hunger and cold; but enough survived to fill the
streets of all the cities of Europe with the mean and squalid beggars,
who had once been thriving farmers and shop-keepers."
what have we to expect if our enemies prevail?
Our homes, too are to be pillaged, our cities sacked and
pillaged, our property confiscated, our true man hanged, and those who
escape the gibbet to be driven as vagabonds and wanderers to foreign
climates. This beautiful
country is to pass out of our hands.
The boundaries which mark our States are in some instances to be
effaced, and the States that remain are to be converted into subject
provinces, governed by Northern rulers and by Northern laws.
Our property is to be ruthlessly seized and turned over to
mercenary strangers, in order to paying the enormous debt which our
subjugation has cost. Our
wives and daughters are to become the prey of brutal lust.
The slave, too, will slowly pass away, as the red man did before
him, under the protection of Northern philanthropy; and the whole
country, now like the garden of Eden in beauty and fertility, will first
be a blackened and smoking desert, and then the minister old Northern
cupidity and avarice. Our
history will be worse than that of Poland and Hungary.
There is not a single redeeming feature in the picture of ruin
which stares us in the face, if we permit ourselves to be conquered.
It is a night of thick darkness that will settle upon us.
Even sympathy, the last solace of the affected, will be denied
us. The civilized world will
look coldly upon us, or even jeer us with the taunt that we have a
deservedly lost our own freedom in seeking to perpetuate the slavery of
others. We shall perish
under a cloud of reproach and unjust suspicions, sedulously propagated
by our enemies, which will be harder to bare than the loss of home and
of goods. Such a fate never
overtook any people before.
the Kentucky Senate, on the 27th ult., resolutions in the abolition of
slavery, and of the constitutional amendment for that purpose were
introduced and discussed. Finally
a substitute for them was adopted by a seventeen to fifteen votes.
This declares it to be the duty of the legislature to pass such
laws as will so dignify laborers as to induce free white laborers to
settle in the state.
New York Herald scouts the
idea that, for the purpose of obtaining assistance of the Confederacy to
drive the French out of Mexico, the United States would acknowledge
Confederate independence. “No,” exclaims the Herald,
“not to obtain Mexico, Canada and South America will we let her go!”
This is evidently a very valuable country; not by any means the pauper
establishment, dependent upon the bounty of the north, that it was the
custom to it in former days.
will not that the people go,” quoth Pharaoh.
Well, we shall see. George
the Third was equally determined in his time, but he had to relax his
grip notwithstanding. If the
people who have not become a degenerate race, the obstinacy of Yankee
tyrants will prove equally unavailing.
to uniting with the United States to drive France out of Mexico, it will
be time enough for the Herald
to scout the idea of such a proposition when it is made.
The Confederacy is pleased with its neighbor on the Rio Grande,
and hopes to see him lengthen his cord and strengthen his stakes.
items of information, says the Columbia Guardian,
from below meagre and unsatisfactory to-day.
a pretty stubborn fight, the enemy took possession of the Orangeburg C.
H. last Sunday, at one
Persons who live near, report that a large fire was seen in that
direction Sunday night. We
have not definitely heard whether the place has been burnt or not.
Charleston we learn that the enemy were repulsed in an attack me on
Battery Simpkins on James Island, Sunday.
look for better results in our neighborhood in a day or two.
There has evidently been a great lack of judgment and foresight
and the handling of the forces so far.
We have thrown away great advantages of position.
There is no more defensible country in the world than that which
stretches between the Savannah River and Salkahatchie, across which the
enemy's advance has been made. Swamps,
causeways and narrow defiles on every hand invite to vigorous defense
and attack. A Yankee
officer, who was captured at River's Bridge over the Salkahatchie, has
said that they did not intend anything serious at that point.
They designed merely to make a feint, but they were emboldened by
their unexpected success and pushed on.
we look now for better things. General
Hampton has been placed in command of Columbia and the vicinity as far
south as the line of our forces extends.
We expect him to bring order out of chaos, and to teach the enemy
some of those lessons which Sheridan learnt to his cost and Virginia.–Const.,
FEBRUARY 21, 1865
EVENING PRESS (RI)
Evacuation of Charleston.
has again prevailed and the Confederate forces have evacuated
Charleston, that nest of traitorous uncleanness. We did expect that
after all which had been said, Gen. Beauregard would defend Charleston
and its approaches. But no sooner than Sherman gets a lodgment in
Columbia, one hundred and twenty-five miles distant, than the fiery
South Carolinians, who call themselves brave on a duelling field, and in
the use of canes upon unarmed men, are moved with an impulse to leave.
Of course, it is prudence which directs the retrograde movement. Why,
the Confederate armies have been full of prudence whenever Sherman has
offered to cross their path. They are fulfilling the proverb of the wise
man, which saith: “The prudent man seeth evil and hideth himself.”
all that has come to us from the Dixie land, we had supposed that the
“very last ditch” in which Sherman’s army would find the
chivalrous sons of the South ready to defend with their lives the
confederacy and their slaves, would be probably at Columbia, and
certainly in or near Charleston. We shrink from battles with their
losses of precious lives and entailed suffering upon our kind, but if
there is any one spot on American soil which the citizens
of this Republic wish to see ploughed and furrowed up with a
storm of merited iron hail, it is that same Charleston.
would like to see Sherman’s bronzed veterans surround it; give all
non-combatants full time to leave, going however as Lot and his family
went from Sodom, taking nothing but their lives with them; then give all
combatants an opportunity to surrender, and then shell the city until it
should become one smoking ruin. It is not the lives of any of these
miserable traitors that we crave, but we would put a black veil of
carnage over the spot where the city stands, which should keep in
eternal remembrance this awful crime, this bloody treason, fostered and
brought to maturity in this foul nest, Charleston.
that through prudence they have evacuated, we suppose that the old game
of New Orleans is to be re-enacted. The dainty Palmetto ladies will be
glad enough to get the comforts of civilization and peace which will
come in with Sherman’s army, but will practise the usual Southern
method of insulting our brave men at every opportunity, seeking a
cowardly protection therefor in their sex. That is a species of
high-bred chivalry common among them. We suggest the appointment of
Major Gen. Ben Butler as military Governor of South Carolina, with his
headquarters in Charleston. Who seconds the motion?
Further from Charleston.
from General Gilmore.
S. C., Feb. 18,
via New York, Feb. 21.
General Halleck, Chief of Staff:
The city of Charleston and all its defences came into our possession
this morning, with about 200 pieces of good artillery and a supply of
enemy commenced evacuating all the works last night, and Major Macbeth
surrendered the city to the troops of Gen. Schimmelpfennig at 9
o’clock this morning, at which time it was occupied by our forces. Our
advance on Edisto, from Bull’s Bay, hastened his retreat.
cotton warehouses, arsenals, quartermaster stores, railroad bridges, and
two iron-clads were burned by the enemy.
vessels in the shipyards were also burned. Nearly all the inhabitants
remaining behind belong to the poorer classes. Very respectfully,
A. Gilmore, Major General
is now selling in Richmond at $700 a barrel, and sugar is worth $20 per
pound. Many of the working men who get but $7.50 per day are unable to
pay for boarding, and are compelled to rely upon the soup houses for
something to eat.
The Evacuation of Charleston
York, Feb. 21.
steamship Fulton, Capt.
Walton, from Port Royal and Charleston Bar on the 18th, at 6 p.m.,
arrived here this morning. Purser McManus furnishes us with the
was evacuated by the rebels on the night of the 17th, leaving the
several fortifications uninjured, besides 200 guns, which they spiked.
evacuation was first discovered at Fort Moultrie.
the morning, at 10 o’clock, part of the troops stationed at James
Island crossed over in boats and took possession of the city without
to the enemy evacuating they fired the upper part of the city, by which
6,000 bales of cotton were burned, and it is supposed that before they
could subdue the flames, two-thirds of the city will be destroyed.
fearful explosion occurred in the Wilmington Depot, cause unknown, by
which several hundred citizens lost their lives. The building was used
for commissary purposes, and situated in the upper part of the city.
Dahlgren was the first to row up to the city, where he arrived at about
2 o’clock p.m. Gen. Q. A.
Gilmore followed soon after in the steamer W.
W. Coit, had an interview with Gen. Schimmelpfennig, he being the
first officer in the city, and for the present in command.
firs flag over Sumter was raised by Capt. Henry M. Bragg, aide de camp
on Gen. Gilmore’s staff, having for a staff an oar and a boat hook
special dispatch to the Boston Advertiser
contains the following:
rumor having been started, consequent on Sherman’s occupation of
Columbia, that peace negotiations were about to be again opened with the
rebel government, a Western member of the House called on the President
last evening to protest against such proceedings, and received for an
answer that nothing of the kind was in contemplation, and that no man
would be passed through our lines whom the President supposed had such
business on hand, until Gen. Grant receives assurances that they want to
treat on the terms laid down at Hampton Roads.
minister resident here of one of the smaller European powers sent
dispatches to his government by Saturday’s steamer, in which he said
that the armed power of the rebellion would probably be broken down by
midsummer at the farthest. He is of the opinion, however, that a long
guerrilla war will follow before a general peace can be restored. It is
understood, also, that he represented the opinion of our authorities to
be that Richmond will be evacuated by order of General Lee.
Suffering Among the Rebel
Memphis Bulletin learns from a
gentleman who left Selma, Ala., on the 14th, and came through Meriden
and Jackson, Miss., that Dick Taylor has a considerable force at Selma
and also at Meriden. At Selma the rebels were manufacturing and turning
out large quantities of munitions of war. The fortifications extend all
around the place, but are not very formidable. Most of Hood’s army
have been sent to operate against Sherman.
were nearly all naked, and wholly dispirited, and had lost all hope of
successful resistance to the federal troops. Large numbers were
barefooted, and stated that ten thousand of Hood’s men had their feet
frost-bitten during the retreat from Nashville, in which they suffered
more than during the previous three years.
slaveholders are greatly dissatisfied with the conscription of slaves
and free Negroes for service in the army, but the work was actively
was collecting a force at Jackson, Miss., for operations, it was said,
Mississippi Legislature was to meet at Columbus to relieve destitute
FEBRUARY 22, 1865
SPRINGFIELD REPUBLICAN (MA)
Life in the Army.
Side Scenes in a Soldier’s
Richmond, February 13,
the Soldiers Live.
are Yankees the wide world over. They will have an eye to business and
manage to trade a little wherever they find themselves. At first thought
it would seem as if the
barriers to speculation here at the front in a time of active
campaigning were insurmountable. The
army is in the field, baggage being restricted within the smallest
limits. The enemy's camps
are in our full view, and his guns so command our position that if he
had ammunition to spare he could throw shot and shell in among us at
every hour of the day and night. Our
entire force is liable to an order for a move at any moment.
Cooked rations for a march are kept always on hand.
Moreover no civilian can enter the limits of this department
without a special permit from those high in authority, and, while means
of transportation are quite limited, the nearest depots of merchandise
are separated from the front by long miles of Virginia roads, impassable
at this season of the year to any but the irrepressible Yankee.
Yet there is the “right smart chance of business” done here,
aside from fighting. Although
not technically and winter quarters, the army does not stand in line or
columns, continually, the generals in advance–supported by the
belligerent drummer boys of romance and poetry–and the surgeons and
chaplains in the mythical “rear.” On the contrary, the soldiers make
themselves quite at home in their temporary log huts which were built in
a day and may be abandoned any hour, and when not on drill, or parade,
or inspection, or review, or fatigue, or guard, or picket, occupy
themselves much as other Yankees would in Springfield or Hartford or San
Francisco or Cape Town or Constantinople, bartering or tinkering or
teaching or ‘tending meetin’.
a rifle shot of my present quarters there are three daguerreotype
saloons, the proprietors of which are prepared to take any position of
the enemy they can get sight of. Just
down the hill, at the junction of the Varina and Newmarket roads, where
a few weeks ago was only the unbroken forest, there are now within a
stone's throw of each other a sutler's store, a fish market, a
barber’s shop, a news room, a dentist’s office, an ambrotype
gallery, a Christian commission station, a chapel, a provost marshal’s
“bull pen,” a soldiers' graveyard, and a division general’s
headquarters, all within easy shelling range of the enemy and liable to
be started off pell mell at five seconds notice.
A little ways back in the woods, with the cavalry division, are a
large clothing warehouse, a bakery, and a watchmakers establishment, in
addition to the usual assortment of sutler's stores and daguerreotype
type saloons. Almost every
regiment has its barbers, and tailors, and shoemaker’s, and watch
repairers–men who do a full soldiers duty besides attending at odd
times to their old trade, turning many an honest penny while they really
a accommodate their fellows by doing what must otherwise remain
unattended to until an opportunity was given of sending back a long
distance to the rear. ->
private in one of the New England regiments says he has for a long time
cleared from twenty to thirty dollars per week repairing watches.
Other men in their ranks have done as well as this at some other
branch of business. One man
makes and engraves corps badges and breast pins; another carves wood and
bone rings, and crosses and watch chains pendants.
Many have card photographs of distinguished generals, or
stationary, or cigars, sent to them by express to retail from their
tents. And thus in a hundred
ways is money made by enlisted men.
Officers, of course, can have nothing to do with such bartering,
however sorely pinched they may be on government pay, or however much of
the trade loving Yankee there is in their natures.
Civilian peddlers abound, bringing the yellow covered furniture
and a cheap jewelry, and trash in the general--although their commerce
is chiefly with new recruits who brought money with them, pay being an
almost forgotten item in an old soldier's experience.
Newspapers are cried nearly as regularly as in Broadway, and
there is no “front” beyond the beat of some of the enterprising
paper of vendors. On the
morning of the capture of Chapin's Bluff, while the fight is still
raging fiercely--indeed just about the time when the black troops charge
of the rebel works with such fearful loss--while Gen. Terry's division
the halted for a brief season in an open field, a horseman with a huge
pile of papers on a saddle pommel came trotting along the line calling
with metropolitan twang, “New York ‘erald an’ Trybeun, Pheladelphy
‘quirer and Washin’ton Chrony-kil;” and more than one soldier who
bought a paper of that venturesome newsman had never time to read it
before he was still in death.
at the Rear.
this is at the far front. Down
at Deep Bottom, or over at Bermuda Hundred, or across at the city point,
business is done on a much larger scale, and many a prominent town in
the prosperous north can show no such records of extensive sales as are
made in there, outside of the purely military transactions.
The embalmers had been sent away.
They were busy and enterprising.
They had rival concerns which vied with each other in
advertising. They are
handbills fixed on every supply wagon which past to or from the front,
and thrust their gloomy captions in soldier's faces from sutler's tents,
and the only tree trunks, and dilapidated buildings.
One firm ventured on the exhibition of their appreciative
interest in the mission of their “subjects” by the seductive bill
head “The Honored Dead! The Honored Dead!” In further proof of their
surpassing patriotism, a partner in this concern “remarked that he
should be glad to have the war end, although it would interfere greatly
with his business.” He then added in grateful acknowledgement of the
value of a much despise class, that “those hundred date regiments were
first-rate customers.” The charge of the embalmers was regulated
strictly by the brink of the subject.
Are we not a commercial people?
PITTSFIELD SUN (MA)
The Abolitionists and Slavery.
of the old abolitionists–men and women who were to the prevalent
anti-slavery sentiment of the country what the apostles were to
primitive Christianity–still enjoy sharp language when speaking of the
action of the government on the question to which they have been so long
and so unselfishly devoted. This may be regretted, and perhaps they
ought to be satisfied with what is doing for the removal of slavery from
the world. The only thing that is settled by the war is this, that
slavery shall no longer have a place in the American Republic; and, once
overthrown here, it cannot long survive elsewhere. With this, it is
argued, the abolitionists ought to be satisfied–and perhaps those who
thus argue are right. But there are two things to be considered that go
far to justify the course of the abolitionists in maintaining a militant
position. The first is that whatever has been done by the North
adversely to slavery has been done grudgingly, and has been extorted
from it, down to a recent date. Regard for the slave, and reverence for
his rights as a God-made man, have had but little to do with our
anti-slavery action. The war itself never would have been entered upon
by us to obtain the deliverance of four millions of human beings from a
bondage ten thousand times worse than that in which the Israelites were
held by Pharaoh. The very quarrel which led to the resort to arms–that
storm which broke in the red rain of war–was not a quarrel with
slavery, but a quarrel with slaveholders. It was not so much the
existence of slavery that annoyed us, but the rule of slaveholders; and
even that rule we could have put up with, had it not been so offensive
as to annoy even some of the warmest of the old democratic allies of the
South. Had the dispute related solely to slavery, there would have been
little difficulty in patching up a compromise that would have lasted for
some years, and it was because the genuine secessionists saw that this
was the case, and feared that a compromise might be made, that they
pursued a course that made it impossible to avoid war,
unless we were prepared to join them in their work of dissolving
the Union. War came, and after seventeen months of delay and abject
pro-slavery policy, during which we begged the rebels to come back on
almost any terms, we were kicked into the adoption of an anti-slavery
course, still giving to the enemy a hundred days’ grace, in which they
might have returned, and have fastened slavery upon the country forever.
Every intelligent person knows, and knew at the time of its appearance,
that the emancipation proclamation was resolved upon, not from any
regard for a wronged race, but because government feared the
acknowledgement of the Southern Confederacy by France and England; and
it was determined to place them in the attitude of patronizing and
aiding, and of welcoming to the Christian Commonwealth of nations, a new
member, with a constitution based on the deliberate avowal that slavery
is the proper condition of the hard-working portion of mankind, while at
the same time and by the same act they should be committed against a
nation that had committed itself to undying hostility to slavery. This
was by far the greatest act of President Lincoln’s life, the one sole
act, indeed, of his public career that entitles him to a high place in
the short list of great statesmen. It was the completest shot between
wind and water that any American statesman has fired since Andrew
Jackson issued his proclamation against nullification; and it was a
greater shot than Jackson fired, inasmuch as it affected all humanity,
while what was done by Jackson concerned our country alone, or affected
other nations but generally. ->
answered its purpose entirely, and historians will do Mr. Lincoln justice
when they shall estimate its effect. He put the nation definitely on the
abolition track, from which it could diverge only to be destroyed. But the
proclamation was a measure of policy only, and we have always understood
that it was adopted reluctantly, and from no special regard for justice. But
it is one of the most beautiful provisions of the moral government of the
world, that when men or nations do what is right, they soon become attached
to the right for its own sake. They are proud of their conduct, and love the
right because of its beauty. They strive to forget the motives on which they
have acted, if they were not lofty, and finally convince themselves that
they were from the first actuated solely by love of justice when they bore
themselves justly. It has been so in this case. The President took the
nation with him, as he would have taken it had he pursued the opposite
course, and we have become abolitionized, most of us, in the two years that
have passed since the proclamation went into operation. But we cannot blame
the abolitionists, who are aware of its history, for not seeing any evidence
of high-toned principle in our conduct, or expect that they should regard it
with complacency. The second reason why there should be some abolitionists
to hold a censorial attitude is to be found in the circumstance that they
may fear a relapse on our part, should there be none to watch over us.
Constantly to receive praise for only doing what is right is apt to render
those who receive it extremely conceited, and conceited people are sure to
conclude that any action of theirs must be proper. It is natural that
abolitionists, who know how recent is our conversion, and its cause, should
believe we require watchmen. They would keep us up to the line that we have
opened, and they discharge their rather ungracious duty in a rather
ungracious manner, plainly intimating that they have little faith in our
sincerity, and that we would re-establish slavery if we could. They are
wrong. We are abolitionists, and mean to give slavery no quarter, as it
deserves none; and though we have been driven to our present position more
by force of circumstance than force of principle, we are committed to it
beyond all chance of retreat. We have no choice in the matter. We cannot
fall back. We cannot surrender on any terms. It is our own liberty that we
contend for, and not merely that of the Negro. We can, it ought to be
admitted, be trusted to be faithful to ourselves, unless our ignorance
should stand in the way of a proper understanding of what that interest is;
and most assuredly the plea of ignorance is not permissible in the present
case. Andrew Johnson lately said, that if Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson
Davis were to combine their power to restore slavery, they could not effect
its restoration–and thus saying, the wise Tennesseean gave the history of
the vile institution’s condition an end.
Union Speech in a Rebel Legislature.
SECESSION A FAILURE.
N. C., Feb. 19.–The
great speech of Mr. Haines, delivered in the House of Commons of North
Carolina on the 20th ultimo, is attracting much attention. His argument
favoring a restoration of the Union is as fearless as it is able. The
irresponsible Representatives in the rebel Congress from Kentucky,
Missouri and other States, who have no constituents, and who are
assisting to bind the fetters upon North Carolina, are severely handled
holds that North Carolina has a perfect right to dissolve her allegiance
with the Confederate government and enter into a separate negotiation
with the United States for peace. He proves secession to be a failure,
and says that Sherman is moving forward through South and North Carolina
to co-operate with Grant in the reduction of Richmond and the capture of
Lee’s army; that great as this undertaking may seem, it is not but so
great as was that of his march from Dalton to Savannah.
North, he said, being in the best possible spirits over their recent
brilliant victories, will speedily furnish the 300,000 men called for by
Mr. Lincoln, who will go to the field with the greatest alacrity a d
soon become excellent soldiers, inspired as they are with the hope of
said–“Can we prevent the success of our enemies? Can we recover back
the majority of the Confederate States which have been taken from us by
the armies of the United States? Can we hold our remaining territory?
Can we even prevent the fall of Richmond and the capture or destruction
of our only remaining army, recruited to the
full extent of our white population? Sit, these questions have
already been answered by the government itself in the negative by its
lending organs the Richmond Sentinel
and Richmond Enquirer, who
have declared the conquest to been too unequal to be longer maintained
unless we arm our slaves.”
was opposed to arming the slaves. On the subject he said: “We have ten
male slaves at home to one white man. Excite them to frenzy by passing a
law to conscript them, and we have an immediate insurrection, which, to
put down, would require the withdrawing of our armies, thus leaving the
field to our enemies. If no insurrection took place they would either go
over to the enemy in a body, or turn their guns against us, with bold
conscripts for leaders.”
the subject of reconciliation, he said: “There are those who think
after so much strife and bloodshed that reconciliation is impossible.
This is a mistake; all history refutes the idea. The case of England and
Scotland, which was in some respects similar to ours, divided as they
were into kingdoms and at war for centuries, effected a reconciliation,
and Scotland started on a new career or prosperity and glory.
people, from being one of the most turbulent, have become one of the
most quiet and refined, as well as one of the most contented and happy
in the world.
is because nature never intended that the Island of Great Britain should
comprise more than one nation. I hold that this will prove to be our own
the subject of a divided country, he said, ->
we take a view of the country which composes the United States, it is
difficult to resist the conviction that nature intended it to contain
but one great nation. Nature never intended the mighty Mississippi to
water and drain but one nation. Close this river to the Northwest by
transferring its mouth to another nation, and they become the most
land-blocked country in the world. Were they were to consent to this,
they would sign their own death warrant. This country can never be
divided so as to separate the Northwestern States from the Gulf States,
without arousing an inexorable law of Nature. The only hope I have ever
seen in this struggle, for success, was that the Northwestern States
might be induced to join our Confederacy. The manner in which those
States voted in the late Presidential election has dispelled that hope
forever, and in my judgment, has sealed the fate of the Confederacy.”
Haines is a distinguished lawyer and the author of able letters, which
appeared in the Raleigh (N. C.) Standard,
over the signature of “Denison,” which attracted so much attention
in the North in 1863.
Davis attempted to arrest him recently for making this remarkable
speech, but was prevented from doing so by the Legislature of North
Carolina, which has extended over him the protecting shield of the
Blockade Runner in Petticoats.–Major
Graves, Provost Marshal at Beaufort, N. C., recently arrested a
high-toned Southern lady named Eveline Pigott, as she was about leaving
town. A search of her person was made and the following stock in trade
found concealed under clothes: One pair fine boots, two pairs pants, one
short, one naval cap, one dozen linen collars, one dozen linen pocket
handkerchiefs, fifty skeins sewing silk, a lot of spool cotton, needles,
tooth brushes, hair combs, two pocket knives, dressing pins, several
pairs of gloves, four or five pounds of assorted candy; also several
letters addressed to rebels outside of our lines, denouncing the
Federals, giving information about the supposed movements of Federal
troops, etc. A very large and prominent store in Beaufort was closed,
supposed to be in complicity with the above named blockade runner.
Hero of Fort Sumter.–At
a meeting of leading citizens of New York, Wednesday, a resolution was
adopted requesting the President to send a national ship to Charleston
harbor to convey thither Ge. Robert Anderson, that he may replace upon
the flagstaff of Fort Sumter that national banner which, on the 13th of
April, 1861, he was compelled to lower at the dictation of the traitors
of South Carolina.
affair will come off on the evening of Monday, March 6th, in the grand
hall of the Patent Office building. The supper has been contracted for
at $5000, the music at $1300. Four thousand invitation tickets are to be
printed, and will be distributed immediately. The tickets are to be $10
each, admitting a gentleman and two ladies. If any gentleman desires to
take more than two ladies, the charge for each over two will be $2. Any
surplus over the expenses is to go to the families of our soldiers in
FEBRUARY 25, 1865
THE NEWPORT MERCURY
agitation and commotion in various parts of the world have not yet
subsided into an ordinary degree of quietude. The turning point in the
affairs of men and nations, where a manifest recovery from their great
aberration from truth and duty shall again be noticeable, is not
supposed to have been yet reached. Different observers, however, have
different means of ascertaining the tendencies of the times. The price
of gold is the criterion to some, and of particular stocks the same to
others. The prosperous advance of Federal arms, however, is likely to
attract the most attention in this point of view. But without a
simultaneous survey of the world, it is very difficult to form a correct
estimate of all the causes in operation for good or for evil. The news
this week shows Federal securities somewhat lower in England, while the
Confederate loan was quoted at 55 to 67. Consols heavy amidst the
various rumors from either continent.2
France is particularly a point of general observation. The London Times
doubts that there is any foundation for the report of a Mexican
cession–but believes that certain provinces are pledged as security
for what becomes or has become due to France. Such however was the tenor
of the report–and perhaps nothing more. The French journals are said
somehow to agree that the story of a “cession” was invented in
England to prejudice the United States against France and Maximilian.
The Paris Moniteur says: All
reports of a “cession” to France of Sonora and other provinces are
absolute fabrications. The word “cession” appears to be necessary to
this denial. But there may be less concern on that subject than on
account of the “rebel rams” sold to Denmark and Prussia and said to
be manœuvred into Confederate cruisers. Some rumors appear to confirm
the first report, that those French built “rebel rams” were on the
way to the United States. Napoleon
is said to be exerting himself to prevent them from doing us any
mischief, and at the same time assuring foreign ministers at his Court
that he had no design of conquest in Mexico.
Houston Telegraph published a
correspondence between a rebel Col. Pierson
at San Antonio and Gen. Lopez
troops on the borders of the Rio Grande. The Colonel says, (in his
address to the Emperor’s well know military adventurer,) that it is
the desire of the “Confederate Government” to cherish amicable
relations with the government of Maximilian; and at the same time thanks
Gen. Lopez for protecting the interests of the “Confederacy.” To
this the general is reported to have said that the sons of the
“Confederacy” may rest assured that the representatives of the
Empire freely offer their friendship; and also that no raid shall be
permitted to organize on Mexican soil for the invasion of Southern
territory. But, if this were all, it might perhaps be explained as
acknowledging only the de facto
existence of a neighboring power. It may be that the military of the new
Empire is making common cause with the “Confederacy” on the line of
the Rio Grande, and that too with authority from the Emperor. But this
General is reported to have expressed his sympathies at least for “the
noble cause of the Confederacy;” but that may have been only his
personal sentiments. And perhaps it would be going too far to say of one
in his position that he was, by that means and by preventing raids upon
the “Confederates,” from the Mexican side of the line, in fact
assisting the “Confederate” cause. There is, however, something more
difficult to explain or to extenuate–it is the report that French
men-of-war have recently and often before saluted the rebel flag in that
quarter with distinguished honor, and at the same time manifested their
contempt for the Flag of the Union. And it may be that our relations
with the French and Mexican Empires area in an unsettled condition. The
opinion appears to exist in well informed circles that these relations
are at present of a delicate character.
war news this week is such as to cheer every loyal heart. One after
another of the rebel strongholds are falling into the possession of the
rightful Government and our heroes on land and sea are becoming masters
of the forts and territory too long in possession of traitors.
Sherman with his victorious
army is marching on to victory and his near approach is the signal for
evacuation and speedy retreat. He announced his presence in Columbia,
the capital of South Carolina, and Beauregard
hastened away, bidding his co-operators at Charleston to flee while
there was yet a chance, and our flag once more floats over the ruins of
Sumter and from the place where the first ordinance of secession was
passed. Gen. Sherman does not stop in his march, but is now advancing
towards Richmond. He will undoubtedly pursue the enemy so close that a
battle cannot be avoided, but all recent fighting has proved that the
spirit of the enemy is crushed and they no longer contend with the
determination of former days, while the Union army dash forward
determined to win victory at every blow.
fall of Fort Anderson was announced on the 22d. It was a very strong
work on the Cape Fear river and, had not the garrison evacuated it as
they did, there would have been serious loss on our part in storming it.
There remained but a line of breastworks between our army and
Wilmington, and forward our army went, and fought desperately on the
21st, but on the 22d the rebels retreated and our troops took possession
of other favorable movements are reported, but we must wait
a few days for the result, and in the meantime, Gen. Singleton
is reported to have gone again to Richmond on a peace mission.
is many years since the anniversary of Washington’s
birth-day has been so generally celebrated throughout the States as upon
the last, if we may judge from the accounts from different sections.
the day was suitably notice. The Artillery Company under command of
Colonel J. H. Powell turned
out fifty-six men and paraded from 10 o’clock a.m.
until 1 o’clock, and in the afternoon spent an hour in drill and
musketry firing. The appearance of the Company at this parade was all
that its friends could wish, and shows that under its present commander
there is no fear of losing its ancient prestige. The Band of the 15th U.
S. regiment, J. N. Horne
leader, furnished the music and received high encomiums for its splendid
12 o’clock m., national
salutes were fired by the Artillery Company on Touro Park, from Fort
Adams, from the Naval ships and by the revenue cutter Miami.
The vessels in the harbor were gaily dressed in bunting and the National
Ensign floated from the several flagstaffs in the city and from the
ships in the harbor.
weather was spring-like, which gave a cheerful aspect to everything, and
the day was generally observed as a holiday.
whole number of deaths in the hospitals about Washington from August 1,
1861, to January 1, 1865, is 18,291: whites 13,262, blacks 5,029. There
are four cemeteries for the internment of soldiers, but three of them
are filled. The largest one is the “National Burying Ground” at
Arlington, upon the estate formerly the property and residence of Gen.
R. E. Lee, and this is used
exclusively now. Rhode Island has 93 of her sons buried in those
a perpendicular” means he is standing upright–perpendicular to the
(short for “consolidated securities”) are “the
funded government securities of Great Britain that originated in the
consolidation in 1751 of various public securities, chiefly in the form
of annuities, into a single debt issue without maturity.”
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