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Civil War Harper's Weekly, September 28, 1861

We have posted our collection of original Civil War Harper's Weekly newspaper on the WEB to assist you in your studies and research of the war. These newspapers allow you to see the war unfold, and read the reactions of the people who were there at the time. We hope this effort serves as a valuable resource for your studies.

(Scroll Down to see entire page, or Newspaper Thumbnails will take you to the page of interest.)



Wisconsin Volunteers


Military Campaign

Slave Liberation

Lincoln Orders: "Don't Free Slaves"

General Johnston

General Albert S. Johnston

Navy Battle

Fernandina Naval Battle

Supply Train

Supply Train

Fort Snelling Minnesota

Fort Snelling

Fishing North Carolina

North Carolina Fisheries


Gun-Boat "Winona"

James River

The James River

White Plains, Virginia

White Plains

Free Negros Fishing

Free Negros

Lytton's Strange Story

Walt Whitman Poem

Walt Whitman Poem










SEPTEMBER 28, 1861.]



(Previous Page) of two delegates was dispatched to find them. Suddenly an inspired member moved that our friend of the table should be sent for the two. It was a vote. He went and sought them in vain, and the Convention had peace. Suddenly he returned. At the first opening he rose and shouted " Mr. President." The President and the Convention heard, and sighed within. He stated that the Committee asked leave to report that it had been unable to discharge its duty, and asked to be relieved from further service. He sat gravely down, and another member jumped up and moved that the Committee be discharged with the thanks of the Convention : when from quite another part of the hall came a clear voice. "I move you, Sir, that the motion lie upon the table." There was a chorus of laughter, and the motion was put and unanimously carried. After which there were no more motions to lie upon the table.

There was a Lounger in the gallery who remembered that Emerson used to call Mrs. Abby Folsom "the flea of Conventions," and he could not help smiling to see that all Conventions might be troubled with fleas.


THERE is general expectation of a battle upon the Potomac. Before this paper is printed it may have taken place. It is even said that on Saturday last several persons went from New York to see the fighting. If it be so, let us hope that they each took a rifle, and meant to see the fight from the ranks and not from the rear.

If there be a battle, has every man considered the effect of its result? We shall beat, or we shall be beaten. In July we did not put the case so. In July we were to beat, and we had Bull Run. At this time, if there be an engagement all along the line of the Potomac, it will be the greatest of the war. The rebels, at least, are not likely to assemble so strong an army again. Suppose we fight, and that they are beaten.

In that case they will doubtless withdraw from Virginia, and the campaign will close by the advance of our lines and the occupation of the foolish State that permitted itself to be made the battle-field. Meanwhile naval expeditions will have given us the commend of a long reach of coast. The occupation of Virginia will strengthen and secure Kentucky, and Fremont's task in Missouri will be easier. With our advance the tone of England, which loves success, will be modified. The rebels will feel pinched by a thousand discomfitures : and they will cast up the year's accounts, and try in vain to find a balance in their favor.

But suppose we fight and that we are beaten. Are we likely to give it up ? Is a strong Southern party likely to be developed at the North ? Will England and France at once recognize the rebel Government ?

For France and England none of us can speak very confidently; but we may assume that we know something of ourselves. And, far from giving it up, disastrous as the defeat may be, we shall rather nerve ouselves for the remaining struggle. We are by no means aroused as we can be. We are not yet as grimly in earnest as we shall be if defeated. Unquestionably we believe that we shall finally conquer ; but every man does not yet feel that the time has come for him to go. If we are beaten upon the Potomac every man will feel that the time has come; he will see that this Government is gone unless he and all his friends hasten to its rescue. He will agree that self-defense knows no law, and that every weapon that can harm the foe must be hurled at him. We shall have no more squeamishness about the military necessity of emancipation, nor will the people suffer their Government to protect any farther the system from which treason springs, and has always sprurg in this country. Nor will the responsibility rest upon us. The rebels have seized the sword; they can not complain if they fall by it.

Fort McHenry. But the line of Pennsylvania would be a line of flame, and New York would move as a giant to the rescue.

If not, if this surmise is wrong, then we ought not to risk another battle. If we are so light of faith in our cause and ultimate victory that, with all our conditions and advantages known to us, we are willing to put our Government, and constitutional liberty, and civilization to the test of a single battle only, we are poltroons and murderers, and the sooner we shout aloud the surrender that is in our hearts the clearer will be our consciences hereafter.


BRIGAND-GENERAL FLOYD and his friends began their exploits, as history relates, and will relate forever, by stealing. They stole guns, money, forts, arsenals, navy-yards, hospitals, ships, mints, postage-stamps ; whatever, in fine, they could lay their hands on, they stole. But if the Government, the rightful owner of the property, proceeded to take it or to try to take it, without informing the thieves, how, when, and where the effort was to be made, those virtuous gentlemen made the welkin ring with their cries of Treachery! treachery!

If the upright Floyd, in the intervals of pilfering, could find time to recreate his mind with light reading, we should recommend to his attention that pleasant passage of Gil Blas, in which the Brigand-General Rolando tells his experience of treacherous interference.

"Meanwhile I committed all kinds of debauchery, in the company of other young men of the

same disposition ; and as our parents did not supply us with money sufficient to support such a delicious life, every one pilfered what he could at his own home; but that being also insufficient, we began to rob in the dark; when, unfortunately, the corregidor got notice of us, and would have caused us to be apprehended, had we not been informed of his treacherous design. Upon which we consulted our safety in flight, and transferred the scene of our exploits to the highway. Since which time, gentlemen, God has given me grace to grow old in my profession, in spite of the dangers to which it is exposed."


ALTHOUGH Clarke, the comedian, has gone, Hermann, the prestidigitateur, remains. If any intelligent man or woman wishes to know what that means, the Academy of Music is the place to ascertain. Mr. Hermann is a magician, a conjuror, a medicine-man, a professor of sleight-of-hand, a wonder-worker. He brings foreign testimonials which certify his great excellence in his way, and as there is always a peculiar interest in really admirable conjuring, and as it is long since we have had a master of magic, Mr. Hermann will probably find crowds who are anxious to forget for a moment the harassing cares of the times.



—Never marry an author. He is sure at some time or other to put you in his books, and the consequence is, you will come out, like those rare botanical specimens similarly preserved, as flat and as dead as possible. Not a fraction of color will there be left in you! There will only be the withered outline, by which you will be able to trace your original beauty. In fact, a wife to an author is only so much book-muslin to enable him to dress up his characters with. To clothe others the wretch does not scruple to cut up his own wife.

A HOPEFUL SENIOR.—"Eh ? by Jove, Sir, a new lease!" Such was the exclamation of a sanguine old buck, who, before his toilet mirror, discovered, by the aid of a double eye-glass, one black hair among his white whiskers.

AN ATMOSPHERIC FACT.—Meat will not keep in this hot weather, not even in a lodging-house. Though we have seen the meat safe overnight, and were pleased to think it was so full of hope, and looked so promising for the morrow's dinner, yet the next day every scrap would be found to have gone, and gone, too, beyond all hope of recovery. Meat never goes so quickly as at the sea-side. In fact, it goes infinitely quicker than it comes. Husbands who are fond of hot dinners should go to a marine lodging house, for they will never see there by any chance a bit of cold meat for weeks and weeks together.

As Edwin lounged on the pier to get a relish for his dinner after swallowing two monstrous bloaters for his breakfast, he said to his Angelina, "Tell me something funny, dearest, and so excite the cachinnatory muscles of my diaphragm, for I have been told that laughing is provocative of appetite."

Thus bidden, as in duty bound, the wife of his fond bosom peered for a brief moment to the seaward of the pier, and receiving inspiration from the freshening breeze that blew there, whispered, " Canst say, love, why the pleasant island of Ceylon is so favorite a resort for marriageable ladies ?"

Edwin, thus appealed to, scratched his nose and stroked his whiskers, but not finding his wits sharpened by either of those processes, was forced to let his wife explain that the answer to her riddle was, that the island she referred to was full of Cingalese. Observing his blank looks, she added in compassion, "Now, dearest, don't be stupid; can't you put an 'h' in, and pronounce it ' Single he's ?' "

Feeling it expected of him, Edwin tried to laugh, but, alas ! he could do little more than get up a faint giggle. Whereupon his placens uxor made another daring effort to excite his risibility, by asking, " Who is the most dangerous young lady in a ball-room?" and adding in the saute breath, "Why, of course, dear, a Lucinda."

Conscious of his density, Edwin tried his best to look as though he understood her ; but, struggle as he might for it, the giggle would not come until, patting with her tiny hand his sorely puzzled brow, said Angelina, " You are sadly dull, dear love, this morning. Can't you divide that Christian name, and call it a loose-cinder!"  

THE HEIGHT OF A WARM IMAGINATION. —Throwing open the windows—lying gracefully at full length on the sofa (having previously put a plate of shrimps on the table before you)—and listening to the gentle trickling of the watering-cart as it paces slowly up and down the street ; with the happy combination of so many luxuries, it becomes as easy as lying on the beach, and throwing pebbles into the sea, to fancy that one is doing the dolce far niente at the sea-side. We beg of the reader, who has any thing of a tropical imagination, to put on only a suitable costume, and to try it just for a couple of hours.

THE PURSUIT OF JOKING UNDER DIFFICULTIES.—The Painters inside the house and the Paviors hammering away violently outside! The two senses of smell and hearing being attacked, beyond all power of stoppage, outrageously at the same time. On our word, it is enough to make a Bright swear!




Scene :—A Richmond Railway Carriage. Time : -About 12 noon. CHOLERIC OLD GENTLEMAN (panting, puffing, perspiring). "Hot, Sir, tremendously hot."

COOL YOUNG PARTY. "It is warm."

C. O. G. "Warm, Sir ! I call it blazing hot. Why the glass is 98° in the Shade!"

C. Y. P. "Really! is that much?"

C. O. G. "Much, Sir! Immense!"

C. Y. P. "Well, then, the glass is perfectly right."

C. O. G. "Right, Sir! I don't understand you. Sir. What do you mean by saying it is right, Sir ?"

C. Y. P. "I mean that the glass is quite right to be as much in the Shade as it can in this warm weather."



What tree pinches the Jews? The juniper (Jew-nipper).

Twice ten are six of us,

Six are but three,

Nine are but four of is,

What can we be?

Would you know more of us,

I will tell you more—Seven are but five of us,

Five are but four.

The number of letters contained in each numeral.

Why is the letter A like twelve o'clock? Because it is the middle of day.

Why are undergraduates like geese?

Because they live upon the commons, they are crammed, they are plucked, and when they are plucked they are regularly sold.

What do ladies look for when they go to church? The hims (hymns).

Why is an egg overdone like an egg underdone? Because it hardly done.



A BALLOON reconnoissance made on 14th at Washington developed the fact that not only had the rebels who made the dash upon the Union pickets near the Chain Bridge fallen back, but that also a very large portion of their main force had done likewise from the positions formerly occupied by them.


A reconnoissance party started from the Chain Bridge on 11th at seven o'clock A. M. under the charge of Colonel Stevens, of the Seventy-ninth New York State Militia. As the skirmishers advanced the rebel pickets retired beyond Lewinsville, which is situated at about seven miles from the starting-point. The object of the party having been accomplished, they began to retrace their steps, but the rebels were determined they should not do this without some suffering. They therefore sent a far superior force of infantry, with cavalry and artillery, to cut them off, while a line of battle was formed by the remainder of their forces. Their battery opened with shell, to which Captain Griffin replied. Several rounds were fired on either side, when our troops ceased firing so as to allow the rebels to advance out of the woods in which they were concealed if they dared, in order to have an open field fight. But to this the rebels would not agree, therefore a thirty-two pounder was brought into action, the shell from which soon silenced the rebel battery. Captain Griffin next gave the rebel cavalry, which had made their appearance on the road to Fall's Church, a specimen of his skill, and soon sent them flying, some with empty saddles, as the shells burst in their midst. The command then withdrew, and reached the Chain Bridge in good order.


Governor Curtin presented colors to the Pennsylvania Regiments last week at Washington, in presence of the President and a number of officers. The Herald correspondent thus describes an incident of the affair:

" For some minutes at this place the troops were allowed to gratify their desire to shake hands with General McClellan, and the General, desiring to become acquainted with his men, and to have them know him, gratified them, and the liveliest of scenes were enacted. The President, Cabinet, Governors, and even the ladies, were lost sight of. General M'Clellan never took an officer by the hand at the expense of a private. He talked little, bowed to each man, and looked him straight in the eyes. Each man had something cheering to say to the General. One man said, ' General, we are anxious to wipe out Bull Run; hope you will allow us to do it soon.' ' Very soon, if the enemy does not run,' was the prompt response.

"At last Captain Barker, of the Chicago cavalry corps, composing the escort, appealed to the troops not to crowd the General too hard, or shake his hand too much, as before he slept he had a long way to travel, and much writing to do with the hand they were shaking. He promised if they would fall back that the General would say a few words to them. They instantly complied, when the General, removing his hat, spoke as follows:

"' SOLDIERS!—We have had our last retreat. We have seen our last defeat. You stand by me, and I will stand by you, and henceforth victory will crown our efforts.' "


The following letter front the President to General Fremont has been published:

" WASHINGTON, D. C., Sept. 11, 1861. "Major-General John C. Fremont:

SIR,—Yours of the 8th, in answer to mine of the 2d instant, was just received. Assured that you, upon the ground, could better judge of the necessities of your position than I could at this distance, on seeing your proclamation of August 30 I perceived no general objection to it; the particular clause, however, in relation to the confiscation of property and the liberation of slaves appeared to me to be objectionable in its non-conformity to the act of Congress, passed the 6th of last August, upon the same subjects, and hence I wrote you expressing my wish that that clause should be modified accordingly. Your answer just received expresses the preference on your part that I should make an open order for the modification, which I very cheerfully do. It is therefore ordered that the said clause of said proclamation be so modified, held, and construed as to conform with and not to transcend the provisions on the same subject contained in the act of Congress entitled 'An act to confiscate property used for insurrectionary purposes' approved August 6, 1861, and that said act be published at length with this order.

" Your obedient servant,   



On September 12, both Houses of the Kentucky Legislature passed the following resolutions:

"Resolved, That Kentucky's peace and neutrality have been wantonly violated, her soil has been invaded, the rights of her citizens have been grossly infringed by the so-called Southern Confederate forces. This has been done without cause; therefore-

"Be it resolved by the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, That the Governor be requested to call out the military force of the State to expel and drive out the invaders.

"Resolved, That the United States be invoked to give aid and assistance, that protection to invasion which is granted to each one of the States by the 4th section of the 4th article of the Constitution of the United States.

"Resolved, That General Robert Anderson be, and he is hereby requested to enter immediately upon the active discharge of his duties in this military district.

"Resolved, That we appeal to the people of Kentucky by the ties of patriotism and honor, by the ties of common interest and common defense, by the remembrances of the past, and by the hopes of future national existence, to assist in repelling and driving out the wanton violators of our peace and neutrality, the lawless invaders of our soil."


On 13th Governor Magoffin vetoed the resolutions. They were, however, immediately passed over his veto, and the Governor was directed to require the withdrawal of the Confederates from Kentucky. Accordingly Governor Magoffin issued the following proclamation, in obedience to the resolutions:

"The Government of the Confederate States, the State of Tennessee, and all others concerned, are hereby informed that Kentucky expects the Confederate or Tennessee troops to be withdrawn from her soil unconditionally."


On 14th Mr. Huston reported a bill to punish rebellion in the State. It was made the special order for 16th.

The bill will make it felony to aid the war by enlisting troops for the Confederates, or inducing any one to do so, or by joining or parading with any company with the intent to join the Confederates. The invasion of Kentucky by any citizen as a Confederate soldier is punishable by death. This Act to go into effect in ten days, and will not be applicable to those who return to their allegiance within sixty days.


General Rosecrans succeeded in engaging the rebel forces under General Floyd on Tuesday last, and after giving them battle caused them to follow the same course as that pursued by Wise—namely, to make a rapid flight—which they did under the cover of darkness. The engagement was a brisk one, the rebels having the advantage of position, and also of greater numbers both of men and artillery. The Union loss is fifteen killed and seventy wounded. The rebel loss of men can not be ascertained, as they removed their dead and wounded, but their loss of material and baggage was heavy, all of which fell into the hands of General Benham's brigade. Twenty-five of the prisoners, taken at the time that Colonel Tyler's force was attacked at Cross Lane, have been recaptured. Floyd's forces are said to be entirely driven from their stronghold and routed.


Another pirate, the notorious Sumter, is reported to have been wrecked on the island of Trinidad, near Port of Spain, on or about the 20th of August. No further particulars have been received, and it is not known whether any of the crew were drowned or not.


As naval expeditions are now leaving every few days to operate on the Southern Coast, we present above a Plan of a harbor which will certainly receive some attention—Beaufort, North Carolina. This is one of the best harbors on the coast; there are fifteen feet water on the bar. At latest dates there were, it is said, four United States men-of-war off the month of the harbor. Fort Macon, which protects it, is very strong, and a large force of North Carolinians have been assigned to its defense.


 Intelligence has been received at St. Louis of a battle fought at Boonville, resulting in a victory for the Union. The rebels, 1000 strong, were driven back by the Home Guard, with a loss of twelve killed and thirty wounded. The Union loss was only one killed and four wounded. Among the rebels killed were Colonel Brown and Captain Brown, both virulent secessionists.


We learn from Fortress Monroe that all was quiet at Hatteras on 13th inst. The Susquehanna and Pawnee were still there. The defenses had been put in complete order, and the guns spiked by the rebels were ready for service. Four Southern vessels, under British colors, had run into the Inlet with merchandise for the rebels, not knowing of the change of sovereignty. They were, of course, captured.


There seems to be a little trouble among the rebel troops. A whole Mississippi regiment is reported to have revolted on Saturday last, broken their muskets to pieces, and started for home. A complete demoralization of the army is apparent. Thirteen rebel regiments have left for their homes since the capture of the forts at Hatteras.


The People's Convention at Syracuse, on 11th, adopted a brief declaration in favor of sustaining the Government in its efforts to quell the rebellion, and nominated the following ticket for State officers:

Attorney-General—Daniel S. Dickinson, of Broome. Secretary of State-Horatio Ballard, of Cortland. Controller—Lucius Robinson, of Chemung.

Treasurer—W. B. Lewis, of Kings.

Canal Commissioners—F. A. Aberger, of Erie, long term ; F. A. 'I'allmadge, of New York, short term.

State Prison Inspector—A. B. Tappan, of Westchester. State Engineer—W. B. Taylor, of Oneida.

Judge of the Court of Appeals—W. B. Wright, of Ulster.

The Republican State Convention met at Syracuse the same day, and nominated the ticket for State officers, with the exception of their candidate for Canal Commissioner, Tallmadge, of New York. The name of Benjamin F. Bruce, of Madison, was substituted for that of Mr. Tallmadge.


Jefferson Davis is not dead. The silence of the Rebel organs on this subject has been broken by positive contradictions of the reports of his decease.

Parson Brownlow and his son, of Knoxville, Tennessee, are still under arrest, by order of General Zollicoffer.



THE announcement is made that three more regiments are ordered to Canada. They start about the middle of September, and will leave in the Great Eastern, which goes to New York, as advertised.

The Times, in an editorial, says that the Government may have private reasons for the movement, but that there are none apparent. If it is purely a defensive movement and a mere declaration of identity between England and Canada, it hopes that Canada will not take it for more than it means, but hold herself ready, if it should be needful, to protect herself. It is regarded as a wise guarantee against all complications, and calculated to strengthen her frontier.


A FORTHCOMING SPEECH FROM THE EMPEROR. Among other on dits in Paris, was one to the effect that, on the occasion of the Emperor's approaching visit to Bordeaux, a speech may be expected from him calculated to remove any fears entertained of warlike intentions on the part of his Majesty.



The resignation of Mingettie, Minister of the Interior, had been accepted. Baron Ricasoli had been nominated to the vacancy with the charge ad interim of Foreign Affairs. Victor Emmanuel had informally received M. Benedict, the new French Minister. Additional successes were reported over the Neapolitan brigands. It was alto reported that some collisions had occurred between the Piedmontese troops and the Papal gens d'armes.



Mr. Tassara, the Spanish Minister, has called to assure the Secretary of State that the report from Charleston that the Captain-General of Cuba has issued a proclamation recognizing the rebel flag is untrue. What has happened is, that vessels from any port of the United States in possession of the rebels, coming into a port with irregular papers, are admitted ex necessitate, without notice of their irregularity, just as they have been admitted in all other ports since the rebels obtained possession of the custom-houses in the insurgent States. It is needless to say that no such vessels can be abroad without escaping the blockading force. There is no recognition of a rebel flag in Spanish ports or in any other ports.

Beaufort Harbor Map



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