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UNITED STATES VOLUNTEERS
AT CAIRO, ILLINOIS
at the Junction
the Ohio and the
readers to realize the change
has lately taken place in that well known
Two camps have
the rivers—Camp Defiance,
river bank ; and
a short distance
The Camp is now
in an unfinished
are, however, rapidly going on; and in the course of a
week or so it will present a good and comfortable
line of sentries are posted along the Levee, on the Mississippi side, some
twenty miles up the Levee. All boats are stopped, and a strict search made, and
all articles destined for the Confederacy are overhauled and
"halted." There are four regiments stationed
here now, with about thirty or forty pieces of artillery.
B. M. Prentiss was
yesterday elected Brigadier-General, and Is already
in command of
We think that, with the
present force, this point can be held against all
that can be brought against it. A
secessionist has been arrested, and is now in the guardhouse. He was
acting the part of spy,
and will probably be hung. In
haste, yours truly, C. D. IRVUS.
May 10, 1861.
Tribune says :
At the present time
fully five thousand men are concentrated
in and about
Cairo. They are constantly drilled and
instructed in the duties of a soldier's life, and have already attained
an efficiency which is
truly astonishing. On Friday last,
had the different regiments
drawn up in line for
review, and required them to be put through a long
series of military evolutions. The manner
in which the whole force acquitted itself would have
reflected no discredit upon veterans.
In addition to the
large body of infantry stationed at this point,
there is also a
strong and efficient corps posted along the banks of
the Ohio and Mississippi, and having, in addition, the mouth
of the Ohio under the fire of their guns.
Several pieces of
ordnance were lately
sent from Pittsburgh, and by
this time have been placed in
position. The artillery, in
point of efficiency, are quite up
to the infantry. They are hourly practiced with their
guns, and many
of them have already become
General Prentiss, who is in command of the forces, is an
officer of much
experience, and well qualified for the position
fills. He is a
cool, prudent, unostentatious gentleman:
likely to undertake any thing rash, nor to fail in
any thing that he does
undertake. He commands the full
of the troops, and we doubt very much if a better
choice could have
The troops are all in good health, and in the best of spirits. The most thorough
discipline is cheerfully submitted to. Comfortable quarters are being provided,
and each day brings
large supplies to minister to their wants
and happiness. Out of so large a force, but twenty-three
men are reported upon the sick list. Suitable buildings
for hospital accommodations
have been erected under the superintendence of Dr. Sim, Brigade Surgeon, who, with
his assistant, Dr. Haven, also of Chicago, is unremitting
in his attention
upon the invalids.
editor of the Chicago
Post tells us :
Cairo can only be
attacked in three ways. First, by steam-vessels
approaching on the river, which could be sent to the bottom in thirty seconds
apiece by the guns now here. This mode of attack, therefore, is the least
probable. Second, by
batteries from the Kentucky and Missouri shores. The Kentucky shore for some
distance from the river is very low and swampy, rendering battery
The Missouri shore is different. Batteries
could be advanced to the water's edge at
Point, and the camp
could be shelled, and rifled cannon would soon cut away the present levee
the camp and the town.
This latter danger is to be provided
rendering the outer face of the levee proof
against shot of all kinds. And it is altogether probable
that the rebels would find the erection of batteries under
the fire of shot and
shells from this point not very agreeable occupation.
The third and only other mode of attack would be to
land troops, from the rivers above this point, cut off the railway
communication in the rear and besiege the place by land. But all such troops
would have to come down the Mississippi or the Ohio, as they could never pass
here in their way up, and it is exceedingly improbable that
any force, unless aided by traitorous citizens, could succeed in such a
movement. Prudential motives, nevertheless, suggest that the means of
communication in the rear of Cairo should be guarded with great vigilance, and
strict watch should be kept upon
all who are known or suspected
to be traitors. This is at present and doubtless will continue to be
done. The Illinois Central Railway, the only
means of transit through the almost impenetrable swamp
that environs this place, will be protected from traitors
wherever they may reside. With this open, fifty thousand
men, if needed, may be
thrown into Cairo within
twenty-four hours after the place is menaced.
By CHARLES DICKENS.
should I pause to ask how much of my shrinking from Provis might be traced to
? Why should I loiter on my road, to compare
the state of mind in which I had tried to rid myself of the stain of the prison
her at the coach-office, with the state of mind
in which I now reflected on the abyss between Estella in her pride and beauty,
and the re-turned transport whom I harbored ? The road would be none the
smoother for it ; the end would be none the better for it : he would not be
helped, nor I extenuated.
A new fear had been engendered in my mind by his narrative ; or, rather, his
narrative had given form and purpose to the fear that was al-ready there. If
Compey were alive and should discover his return, I could hardly doubt the
consequence. That Compey stood in mortal
fear of him, neither of the two could know much better than
I; and that any such man as that man had been described to be would
hesitate to release himself for good from a dreaded enemy,
by the safe means of becoming an informer, was scarcely to be imagined.
Never had I breathed, and never would I breathe—or so I resolved—a word of
Estella to Provis. But I said to Herbert that, before I could go abroad, I must
see both Estella and Miss Havisham. This was when we were left alone on the
night of the day when Provis told us his story. I resolved to go out to Richmond
next day, and I went.
On my presenting myself at Mrs. Brandley's, Estella's maid was called to tell me
that Estella had gone into the country. Where ? To Satis House, as usual. Not as
usual, I said, for she had never yet gone there without me ; when was she coming
back? There was an air of reservation in the answer which increased my
perplexity, and the answer was that her maid believed she was only coming back
at all for a little while. I could make nothing of this, except that it was
meant that I should make no-thing of it, and I went home again in complete
Another night-consultation with Herbert after
Provis was gone home (I
always took him home, and always looked well about me), led us to the
conclusion that nothing should be said about going abroad until I came back from
Miss Havisham's. In the mean time, Herbert and I were to consider separately
what it would be best to say—whether we should devise any pretense of
being afraid that he was under suspicious observation; or whether I, who
had never yet been abroad, should propose an expedition. We both knew that I had
but to propose any thing, and he would consent. We agreed that his remaining
many days in his present hazard was not to be thought of.
Next day I had the meanness to feign that I was under a binding promise to go
down to Joe; but I was capable of
almost any meanness toward Joe or his name. Provis was to be strictly
careful while I was gone, and
Herbert was to take the charge of him that I had taken, was to be absent
only one night, and, on my return, the gratification of his impatience for my
starting as a gentleman on a
greater scale was to be begun.
It occurred to me then, and as I afterward found to Herbert also, that he
might be best got away across the water on that pretense—as, to make purchases,
or the like.
Having thus cleared the way for my expedition to Miss Havisham's,
I set off by the early
morning coach before it was yet light,
out on the open country-road when the day came creeping on, halting and
whimpering and shivering, and wrapped in patches of cloud and rags of mist, like
a beggar. When we drove up to the Blue Boar after a drizzly ride, whom
should I see come out under the gate-way, tooth-pick in hand, to look at
the coach, but Bentley Drummle !
As he pretended not to see me, I pretended not to see him. It was a very lame
pretense on both sides ; the lamer,
because we both went into the coffee-room, where he had just finished his
breakfast and where I ordered mine. It was poisonous to me to see him in the
town, for I very well knew why he had come there.
Pretending to read a smeary newspaper long out of date, which had nothing half
so legible in its local news as the foreign matter of coffee, pickles, fish
sauces, gravy, melted butter, and wine, with which it was sprinkled all over, as
if it had taken the measles in a highly irregular form, I sat at my table while
he stood before the fire. By degrees it became an enormous injury to me that he
stood before the fire, and I got up, determined to have my share of it. I had to
put my hand behind his legs for the poker when I went up to the fire-place to
stir the fire, but still pretended not to know him.
" Is this a cut ?" said Mr. Drummle.
" Oh !" said I, poker in hand ; " it's you, is it ? How do you do? I was
wondering who it was who kept the fire off."
With that I poked tremendously, and having done so, planted myself side by side
with Mr. Drummle, my shoulders
squared and my back to the fire.
" You have just come down ?" said Mr. Drummle, edging me a little away with his
" Yes," said I, edging
him a little away with
" Beastly place," said Drummle. " Your part of the country, I think?"
" Yes," I assented. " I am told it's very like Shropshire."
Not in the least like it," said Drummle. Here Mr. Drummle looked at his boots,
and I looked at mine ; and then Mr. Drummle looked at my boots, and I looked at
"Have you been here long ?" I asked, determined not to yield an inch of the
"Long enough to be tired of it,"
returned Drummle, pretending to yawn, but equally determined.
" Do you stay here long ?"
"Can't say," answered Mr. Drummle.
"Do you ?"
" Can't say," said I.
I felt here, through a tingling in my blood, that if Mr. Drummle's shoulder had
claimed another hair's-breadth of room, I should have jerked him into the window
; equally, that if my own shoulder
had urged a similar claim, Mr.
Drummle would have jerked me into the nearest box. He whistled a little.
So did I.
" Large tract of marshes about here, I believe ?" said Drummle.
Yes. What of that ?" said I.
Mr. Drummle looked at me, and then at my boots, and then said, " Oh !" and
laughed. " Are you amused, Mr. Drummle ?"
"No," said he, "not particularly. I am going out for a ride in the saddle. I
mean to explore those marshes for amusement. Out-of-the-way villages there, they
tell me. Curious little public houses—and smithies--and that. Waiter !"
" Is that horse of mine ready ?"
"Brought round to the door, Sir."
"I say. Look here, you Sir. The lady won't ride to-day ; the weather won't do."
" Very good, Sir."
" And I don't dine, because I'm going to dine at the lady's."
" Very good, Sir."
Then Drummle glanced at me, with an insolent triumph on his great jowled face
that cut me to the heart, dull as he was, and so exasperated me that I felt
inclined to take him in my arms as the robber in the story-book is said to have
taken the old lady, and seat him on the fire.
One thing was manifest to both of us, and that was, that until relief came
neither of us could relinquish the fire. There we stood, well squared up before
it, shoulder to shoulder, and foot to toot, with our hands behind us, not
budging an inch. The horse was visible outside in the drizzle at the door, my
breakfast was put on table, Drummle's was cleared away, the weather invited me
to begin, I nodded, we both stood our ground.
Have you been to the Grove since ?" said Drummle.
"No," said I, "I had quite enough of the Finches the last time I was there."
" Was that when we had a difference of opinion ?"
" Yes," I replied, very shortly.
" Come, come ! They let you off easily enough," sneered Drummle. " You shouldn't
have lost your temper."
"Mr. Drummle," said I, "you are not competent to give advice on that subject.
When I lose my temper (not that I admit having done so on that occasion) I don't
" I do," said Drummle.
After glancing at him once or twice in an in-creased state of smouldering
ferocity, I said :
"Mr. Drummle, I did not seek this conversation, and I don't think it an
"I am sure it's not," said he, superciliously, over his shoulder ; " I don't
think any thing about it."
" And therefore," I went on, "with your leave, I will suggest that we hold no
kind of conversation in future."
" Quite my opinion," said Drummle, " and what I should have suggested myself, or
done—more likely—without suggesting. But don't lose your temper. Haven't you
lost enough without that ?"
"What do you mean, Sir?"
"Waiter!" said Drummle, by way of answering me.
The waiter reappeared.
Look here, you Sir. You quite understand that the young lady don't ride to-day,
and that I dine at the young lady's?"
"Quite so, Sir."
When the waiter had felt my fast-cooling tea-pot with the palm of his hand, and
had looked imploringly at me, and had gone out, Drummle, careful not to move the
shoulder next me, took a cigar from his pocket and bit the end off, but showed
no sign of stirring. Choking and boiling as I was, I felt that we could not go a
word fur ther without introducing Estella's name, which
could not endure to hear him utter ; and there-fore I looked stonily at the
opposite wall, as if there were no one present, and forced myself to silence.
How long we might have remained in this ridiculous position it is impossible to
say, but for the incursion of three thriving farmers—laid on by the waiter, I am
inclined to think—who came into the
coffee-room unbuttoning their great-coats and rubbing their hands, and
before whom, as they charged at the fire, we were obliged to give way.
I saw him through the window, seizing his horse's mane, and mounting in his
blundering brutal manner, and sidling and backing away. I thought he was gone
when he came bask, calling for a light for the cigar in his mouth, which he had
forgotten. A man in a dust-colored