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Robert E. Lee Portrait
Page) saying, 'I told you so ; gone to
the bottom,' when he returned with a new continent. The descendants of those
people shake their heads in the old way, and prattle the old twaddle, only they
do it in newspapers now ; and just as they are saying, 'Stuff! nonsense ! It
always was night, and it always will be'—pop ! up comes the sun !"
"Possibly," answered I, as
patiently as I could; "but hadn't you better save your lecture for those who
will pay for it?" Yet I knew he was right.
THE ROAD TO THE WHITE HOUSE.
THERE comes occasionally a
painful rumor that many officers of the army are not really in earnest in the
war ; that they think it is an error of the rebels to take up arms to overthrow
the best of governments ; to shoot their fellow-citizens, and to do all they can
to ruin the prosperity of the country, and to blast the hope of constitutional
liberty —an error, but still a venial error ; an error to be borne with, to be
extenuated, to be guarded as much as possible from its natural consequences: in
fine, that although most of the people in the Slave States are in open
rebellion, it is the people of the Free States who are really guilty. As a
consequence of this view, the story is that such officers are nervously anxious
to show that they do not share the guilt of loyal citizens, who believe
to be the root of rebellion, and try to prove it by the most unscrupulous
servility to slave masters.
This may be true of some
officers. It is doubtless true of the Colonel who advertised, after the election
Mr. Lincoln, that he was raising a regiment to resist the Government. But it
certainly is not true of many officers who had, before the war, been politically
allied with the South. It is not true, for instance, of
General Burnside ; and
the war will winnow the earnest men from the trifling—the patriots from the
compromisers—fast enough. This nation has been dragged long enough at the tail
of slavery. Every other question has long enough been lost in that one : Is he
sure for slavery ? Every one of the myriad national offices has been long enough
a loophole from which a shot was fired at the principles of the Government and
at human rights. Not a postmaster, not a custom-house officer, not a man who was
paid ten dollars or ten thousand by the national Government, but has been the
slave or the apologist of slavery, or has held his tongue and bowed his head in
a silence that shamed himself.
The first gun
fired at Sumter
shot all this stuff away. Henceforth the word Liberty, and not Slavery, is the
test word of nationality. Henceforth an American gentleman is a man who pays
other men for the labor they do for him ; and who does not sell other people's
wives and children, or his own, to pay his debts. Henceforth it is not
treasonable to repeat the Declaration of Independence, nor fanatical and
incendiary to believe it. The people of this country have smothered their
convictions—have apologized, and shirked, and submitted to the unscrupulous
tyranny of slavery in the Government and in society—because they wanted peace at
any price. Now they see precisely what its character is. They know that it can
never do any thing worse than it is doing now, and therefore they have no
inducement to cringe any longer. They have done licking
Mr. Slidell's shoes, and
kissing the toe of
Mr. Mason's boot. Of course they are not so foolish as to
suppose that all slaveholders are bad people ; but they are sagacious enough to
know that they are all more or less sophisticated. You can not breathe mephitic
air and not be poisoned.
Neither are the people of this
country so exquisitely silly as to suppose that those who have said that when
the fire reached the powder there would be an explosion are responsible for the
explosion. To say, "Don't discuss the Slavery question: do let it be : let it
take care of itself," was to say, " Don't think : don't feel : don't have any
conscience, or reason, or common sense : the devil has the best of it ; so let's
all go to pot together."
Slavery in this country is doomed
; and the rebel leaders knew it, or they would have raised no insurrection.
After this rebellion no man of sense will doubt whether or not there is an
irrepressible conflict between the rights of man and the wrongs of man. Do you
say that it can not be touched? My friend, every thing that withstands the
supremacy of the Government can be touched. The log on which you rest your rifle
to shoot an honest citizen can be knocked away, and the slave who stands by with
another rifle for you, or who stays at home and does your work while you come up
to murder us for defending our Government, he also can be knocked away. And he
General of the United
States army supposes that this nation is going to return to grovel in
obsequiousness to slavery, like a dog to his vomit; that a young, vigorous,
sagacious people is going to forge again the chains it has once broken—and
thinks that the road to the Presidency, it were better for him that he had
remained an ensign all the days of his life. Not unconstitutionally—not against
the law—but by the will of the people Slavery is doomed. If the bond allow it a
pound of flesh, the pound of flesh it shall have, but not a drop of blood.
Henceforth, O General, if you would be President, take the road marked " To the
Right," not that " To the Wrong."
THE ENNOBLING INSTITUTION.
A GOOD many years ago, the Irish
barrister Philips, in a famous speech declared that whenever any slave, of
whatever race or color, touched the soil of Great Britain, he rose "redeemed,
regenerated, disenthralled." At the present time Great Britain is the especial
ally and friend of a faction which is trying to establish a system of society of
which the following are incidents. Can a decent Englishman read such things
without bitter shame and loathing, that his nation throws the mantle of its
sympathy over them ? And this war is waged by the rebellion because the people
of this country wished that the
area in which such things are possible should not be extended.
—" The question of the status of
Edward S. Gentry, who is claimed to be both a white man and a darkey, was still
further argued before Judge William H. Lyons, on yesterday, but no decision was
rendered. The Mayor condemned Gentry to some penalty as a colored person, and he
appealed to Judge Lyons to determine his standing."
—" Alec Taylor, an emancipated
slave, was brought before the Mayor yesterday for remaining in the State
contrary to law; and it being proved that one year since he had been tried and
allowed one month to vamose the ranche, the Mayor sent him before the Hustings
court, which tribunal will, no doubt, in pursuance of law, order him to be sold
into perpetual slavery. The prospect before the darkey is gloomy or gay, as he
may choose to regard it."
How justly says the Memphis
Avalanche, that "the civilized nations of the earth are beginning to open their
eyes to the elevating and salutary effects upon society of this ennobling
institution. They see a people reared under its influences displaying * * * all
that justice, humanity, magnanimity, moderation, and stainless chivalry, which
enter into the highest type of human civilization."
HUMORS OF THE DAY.
CONSOLING A WIDOW.—A clergyman,
consoling a young widow on the death of her husband, remarked that she could not
find his equal. " I don't know about that," remarked the sobbing fair one, " but
Many "contrabands" are very pious
in their way, though they have an odd way of expressing themselves even in
prayer. We all know about the good darkey who prayed that his beloved mistress
might be "like a great roarin' lion seekin' somebody to devour." Down at Port
Royal, the other day, an old negro was heard pouring out his soul in a company
of his fellows.
"O Lord !" he cried, "bress them
Yankee bobolitionist mudsills !"
"Amen !" was shouted vigorously
by all his companions.
"De Lord bress ebery one of the
dear good mudsills. Dey pays us for pickin' cotton, and massa don't!"
Poor old Sambo had never heard
his new Yankee friends designated in any other terms, and so he used the words
in his prayer in their behalf.
A Scotch pedestrian, attacked by
three highwaymen, defended himself with great courage and obstinacy, and was at
last overpowered and his pockets rifled. The robbers expected, from the
extraordinary resistance they had experienced, to lay their hands on some rich
booty; but were not a little surprised to discover that the whole treasure which
the sturdy Caledonian had been defending at the hazard of life consisted of no
more than a crooked six-pence. " The deuce is in him," said one of the rogues;
"if he had had eighteenpence I suppose he would have killed the whole of us."
Two Irishmen were in prison, the
one for stealing a cow, and the other for stealing a watch. "Hallo, Mike! what
o'clock is it ? said the cow-stealer to the other. "And sure, Pat, I haven't any
time-piece handy, but I think it is most milking time."
"Silence! keep silence in Court!"
said an angry Judge. " Here we have judged a dozen cases this morning, and I
have not heard one of them." Justice was blind as well as deaf.
Lord Campbell, it is well known,
was fond of a joke, and sometimes had the tables turned upon himself. A few days
before his death he met a barrister who had grown very stout of late, and
remarked," Why, Mr. —, you are getting as fat as a porpoise." " Fit company, my
lord, for the great seal," was the ready repartee.
John Hunter, in demonstrating the
jaw-bone, observed that the bone was known to abound in proportion to the want
of brains. Some students at the time were talking instead of attending to the
lecture, upon which Hunter exclaimed, "Gentlemen, let us have more intellect,
and less jaw."
The latest advertisement of an
air-tight coffin is, that it protects the form from decomposition, "and can be
retained in the parlor as an elegant piece of furniture, without any annoyance
What is society, after all, but a
mixture of mister-ies and miss-eries?
Collins, the sweet poet, was much
attached to a young lady who was born the day before him, and who did not return
his passion. " Yours is a hard case," said a friend. "It is so indeed," replied
Collins, "for I came into the world a day after the fair."
A TIGHT FIX.—They say there is a
man living in this city who attends church regularly, and clasps his hands so
tight during praying-time that he can't get them open when the contribution-box
" Wife," said a man, looking for
his bootjack, "I have places where I keep my things, and you ought to know it."
"Yes," said she, "I ought to know where you keep your late hours."
"Give me a nice polish, you young
scamp," said a dirty swell with a pipe and pork pie cap. "I can't give you one,"
said the lad ; " it would take a cleverer 'man' nor me to do that. But I can
polish your boots, Sir."
"I have turned many a woman's
head," boasted a young nobleman of France. " Yes," replied Talleyrand, "away
"It is very curious," said a
young lady, "that a tortoise, from whom we get all our shell combs, has no
"A man who'll maliciously set
fire to a shed," said Mr. Slow, " and burn up twenty cows, ought to be kicked to
death by a donkey—and I'd like to do it myself!" Slow is very severe sometimes.
ON Tuesday, January 21, in the
Senate, petitions for a continuance of the Coast Survey, for a naval depot at
Sandusky, Ohio, and in favor of the
emancipation of slaves, were presented. The
resolution to allow certain naval officers to receive presents from Japan was
adopted. The Judiciary Committee was instructed to consider the expediency of
amending the naturalization laws so as to confer the right of citizenship upon
foreigners serving in our army. Bills to regulate the compensation of
District-Attorneys, and to authorize the examination of certain parties in the
Courts of the United States, were presented and referred. The amendment of the
House to the bill for the completion of the defenses of
Washington was agreed
to. An amendment to the act allowing the discharge from the army of enlisted
minors was agreed to, providing that no persons under eighteen years of age
should be enlisted, and that the oath of enlistment should be conclusive as to
age. The amendment imposing the death penalty upon spies and those forcing
safe-guards was agreed to. A bill authorizing the President to appoint two
Assistant Secretaries of War, to serve one year, at a salary of $3000, was
passed. A resolution regulating the compensation
of Customs Collectors and Naval
Officers was referred. The report of the Judiciary Committee against the
expulsion of Senator Bright, of Indiana, was then debated, and Senators Sumner,
Lane, of Indiana, and Bright made speeches.—In the House, the Senate bill
authorizing the appointment of Assistant Secretaries of War was passed. The bill
requiring postage upon printed matter carried outside the mails was debated,
and, on motion of Mr. Dawes, of Massachusetts, it was laid on the table, 75
against 66, thus killing it. Mr. Morrill, of Vermont, gave notice that the
Committee proposed levying a tax—perhaps by stamp—on newspapers, and a tax on
On Wednesday, 22d, in the Senate,
the resolution appropriating $10,000 for expenses of the Joint Committee on the
War was passed. The House bill repealing the act exempting witnesses before
Congressional committees from criminal prosecution was passed. A bill
authorizing the President to take military possession of certain railroad and
telegraph lines was referred. Senator Davis, of Kentucky, made a strong speech
in favor of the expulsion of Senator Bright, of Indians, and against the
In the House, the bill for the
increase of the clerical force of the War and Navy Departments was passed, and
also the Senate bill authorizing certain naval officers to receive presents from
Japan. The Committee on Ways and Means reported a bill authorizing the issue of
United States notes, and providing for the redemption and funding thereof, and
for the funding of the national floating debt, which was made the special order
for Tuesday, 28th. A bill was reported from the Military Committee for the
paying of field-officers of volunteer regiments for services rendered prior to
the complete organization of their regiments. The President was requested to
inform the House if the act requiring officers of new regular regiments
appointed from civil life to be assigned to recruiting service had been complied
with, and how many officers had been thus employed. A resolution was adopted
asking the Secretary of War whether and when a military force can he detailed to
guard the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, so that the road may be repaired. Messrs. Diven, of New York, and Stevens, of Pennsylvania, spoke upon rebellion and
On Thursday, 23d, in the Senate,
petitions for the employment of homeopathic physicians in the army, a joint
resolution of the Michigan Legislature in favor of exchanging
prisoners of war,
and a remonstrance against suspending the Coast Survey were presented. The
amendments to the Washington Defense bill, providing that no new works be
commenced, and imposing the death-penalty upon spies and those forcing
safe-guards, were agreed to and the bill passed. The House amendment to the bill
increasing the clerical force of the War and Navy Departments was concurred in,
and the bill passed. Senator Davis, of Kentucky, concluded his speech in favor
of expelling Senator Bright, of Indiana, and advocated the hanging of
secessionists and abolitionists in pairs.—In the House, the Naval Appropriation
bill, a bill establishing a postal money-order system, a bill regulating the
prize laws, and a bill for a military and mail railroad from Kentucky to
Tennessee, were reported. Mr. Alley, of Massachusetts, Mr. Harrison, of Ohio,
Mr. Van Horn, of New York, and Mr. Washburne, of Illinois, made speeches.
On Friday, 24th, in the Senate,
the credentials of Robert Wilson, appointed Senator from Missouri, vice Senator
Polk expelled, were presented, and Mr. Wilson took the oath and his seat. The
resolution appropriating $10,000 for expenses of the House Special War Contract
Investigating Committee was passed. The bill relating to judicial districts of
United States Circuit Courts was passed. Bills creating two new naval bureaux
and granting charters for banks in the District of Columbia were referred.
Senators Davis, Harlan, Sumner, Cowan, Harris, Ten Eyck, and Clark, debated the
resolution regarding the expulsion of Bright, of Indiana. The Senate went into
executive session.-In the House the joint resolution appropriating $10,000 for
expenses of the War Contract Investigating Committee was adopted. The Senate
bill appropriating $25,000 for protection of emigrants on overland routes to the
Pacific was passed. The bill providing more stringent regulations of the sale of
liquors to Indians was passed. Resolutions of the Legislature of New York in
favor of enactments to prevent frauds in furnishing Government supplies, were
referred to the Special Committee on the Investigation of War Contracts. The
House non-concurred in the Senate's amendments to the Consular and Diplomatic
Appropriation bill including Florence among the Consul Generalships and striking
out Hayti and Liberia. Mr. Blair's bill for the emancipation and colonization of
slaves of rebels was postponed till Tuesday, and both Houses adjourned till
On Monday, 28th, in the Senate,
petitions for the establishment of a national armory west of the Alleghenies;
against all traffic in public lands; in favor of continuing the coast survey ;
for the employment of homeopathy in the army, and in favor of the emancipation
of slaves, were presented. Resolutions of the New York Assembly in regard to
frauds upon the Government were received. Committee on Naval Affairs reported
upon the reply of the Secretary of the Navy in regard to vessels purchased for
the Government, censuring the action of the Secretary. By joint resolution the
Superintendent of the Census Bureau was ordered to furnish the War Department
with statistical information. A resolution inquiring whether the
ship-of-the-line Alabama can be converted into a steamer was laid over. Senator
Wilson introduced a bill providing for the more effectual suppression of the
slave-trade. An amendment to the joint rules providing that both Houses may go
into secret session, upon certain contingencies, to act upon matters pertaining
to the rebellion, was discussed. Senator Latham, of California, opposed the
expulsion of Bright, of Indiana. Executive session followed.—In the House, a
bill for the construction of a military road to Denver City was referred. Mr.
Colfax introduced a bill to render postage on printed matter more uniform. A
debate on rebellion and slavery took place, and the Military Appropriation, bill
was passed without amendment. The appropriations for the executive, judicial,
and legislative branches of the Government were discussed, but the House
adjourned without action.
THE BURNSIDE EXPEDITION.
A special messenger, with
dispatches from General Burnside, reached Washington on the morning of the 28th
Jan. They are dated "Head-quarters, Department of North Carolina,
Inlet, Jan. 26, 1862."
General Burnside states : We left
our anchorage at Annapolis on Thursday, the 9th, and, after a protracted
passage, owing to dense fogs, arrived at Fortress Monroe on Friday night, at
twelve o'clock. Leaving Fortress Monroe on Saturday, at ten o'clock in the
morning, we proceeded at once to sea, but, owing to fogs on Sunday night, our
progress was very slow. On Monday, the 13th, the weather cleared, with a heavy
wind and a rough sea, which caused our vessels to labor very heavily, and some
were obliged to cut loose from the vessels they were towing. Most of them,
however, passed over the bar, and anchored inside the harbor about twelve
o'clock noon on the 15th, just in time to escape the severe gale of Monday night
The propeller New York ran on the
bar at the entrance to the harbor, and, owing to the severe weather and want of
small boats, we could render her no assistance. She was laden with stores, and
The General also says he had been
led to believe that he would find experienced pilots at Hatteras, but had great
difficulty in accomplishing his wish for want of proper accommodations. He adds
that he would commence that day to build a wharf for landing supplies. The men
were cheerful and patient, and he would proceed with confidence.
An accident occurred in an effort
to relieve the steamer New York, by which a boat was swamped, and the lives of
Colonel Allen, of the Ninth New Jersey, his surgeon, and a mate of the boat were
After the arrival of the
expedition at Hatteras the enemy made their appearance in one or two vessels, on
a reconnoitering expedition. Our boats gave chase and drove them back.
The health of the men is
excellent: the deaths from disease unusually few. The troops are cheerful, and
full of confidence in the General commanding, who is at work night and day.
There can be little doubt that in a few days every thing will be ready for the
THE MISSISSIPPI EXPEDITION.
All the members of the gun-boat
navy are ordered to report at Cairo immediately, as a sudden and speedy movement
WISE RATS DESERTING A SINKING
The French residents of
Orleans have applied to our Government through General Phelps, at
for permission to leave New Orleans in a body, as they despair of the blockade
being raised or the Confederacy recognized.
REBEL STONE FLEETS.
The Southern journals are calling
upon the rebel government to save
stone fleet" trouble by obstructing
Southern harbors and rivers for us, so as to prevent the entrance of our
expeditions. The London Times will please make a note of this.
GOVERNOR LETCHER DRUNK.
The Richmond Examiner of the 23d
rebukes Governor Letcher for entering the legislative chamber drunk, and sitting
with a cigar in his mouth during the session—"a spectacle for the whole house,
and a butt for the jokes of the gallery."
CAPTURE OF CEDAR KEYS, FLORIDA.
We have intelligence, via
Savannah, of the capture of Cedar Keys, a group of islands on the west coast of
Florida, by the Union forces. These islands form the western termines of the
Florida railroad, which runs across the Peninsula, and their capture cuts off a
most important route of rebel communication between the Atlantic and the Gulf of
ARMY OF THE POTOMAC.
General McClellan has fully
recovered his health and resumed his duties. In spite of the prevalent inclement
weather the amount of sickness in the army does not exceed that of any community
of the same number of persons. The Hutchinson band of minstrels were turned out
of the camps recently for singing
Abolition songs to the soldiers. Governor
Sprague has offered three regiments of infantry and two batteries of artillery
to defend Washington when the forward movement is made.
DEPARTMENT OF MISSOURI.
The accounts from interior Missouri are indefinite, but
Price is probably
still in retreat.
General Halleck has issued an order that any attempt to
interfere with the execution of an order from head-quarters will be regarded and
punished as a military offense; and he has ordered Mr. Engel, a wealthy secessionist, to leave the Department of Missouri, for
resisting, by civil process, the assessment ordered upon all secessionists for
the benefit of Union refugees. General Jim Lane has arrived at Chicago on his
way to take command of his Southern overland expedition. In a speech he promised
to give each one of his 34,000 soldiers a freed slave to wait upon him. General
Price has written to ask whether General Halleck intends to hang
bridge-burners and received an affirmative reply.
EXCHANGE OF PRISONERS.
Secretary Stanton has ordered
that two United States Commissioners be appointed to visit the cities of the
South where our officers and men are confined, and adopt such measures for their
comfort as the rebel authorities will permit. This action looks toward an
exchange of prisoners, and is received with great rejoicing. Ex-Governor
Hamilton Fish, of New York, and Bishop Ames, of Ohio, have been appointed as the
Commissioners, have accepted, and will go South with the next batch of exchanged
FROM THE REBEL STATES.
The rebel journals are still
Jeff Davis's Government, and complain of inactivity, disease, and
want, in and out of the army. The rebel government has prohibited the
publication of any war news, except by authority, to suppress, probably, the
news of the Kentucky defeat. Ex-President Tyler deceased, at Richmond, Virginia,
on the 17th inst. A plan for governmental smuggling was broached at Richmond.
ANOTHER EXPEDITION IN EMBRYO.
Captain Porter's mortar fleet, not yet sailed, there appears to be
another expedition in embryo, as the War Department has inquired of the
authorities of Massachusetts and Rhode Island what number of troops from these States can be put in active service within seven days.
THE TREASURY NOTE BILL.
The Treasury Note Bill reported
to Congress by the Committee of Ways and Means provides for the issue of
$100,000,000 of demand notes without interest, and $500,000,000 of twenty years'
six per cent. bonds, the demand notes to be fundable. The Secretary of the
Treasury approves the bill.
DISCOVERY OF RELICS OF
The Hon. Caleb Lyons has
discovered, at Arlington House, Virginia, a set of porcelains presented to
Washington by the Society of Cincinnati; pieces of a tea set presented to Mrs.
Washington by Lafayette; Washington's field tent, portmanteau, tea-table,
cabinet, punch-bowl, treasure chest; two vases presented by Mr. Vaughn, of
London ; two candelabra, presented by Count Rochambeau, and the blanket under
which Washington died. Arlington House was the residence of
General Lee (rebel),
whose wife was the daughter of G. W. P. Custis, the favorite of Washington. The
articles are deposited at the Patent Office.
NEW YORK STATE DEFENSES.
In his recent report, General
Arthur, Engineer-in-Chief of the State of New York, recommends a large increase
of our harbor and lake fortifications; the immediate manufacture of guns of
large calibre; the construction of iron-clad steam gun-boats for the lakes, and
the exercise of the militia in the management of heavy sea-coast artillery.
THE MASON AND SLIDELL AFFAIR.
THE City of Washington arrived at
Queenstown on the 8th instant with the news of the
surrender of Mason and
Slidell by the United States Government. The news was gratifyingly received in
financial and commercial circles.
The London Times and other
English journals state that the settlement of the
Trent affair is perfectly
satisfactory. The Times hopes that no ovation will be given to
Slidell, whom it pronounces "blind and habitual haters and revilers of England;"
and it adds, "England would have done as much to rescue two negroes." The Tuscarora is still watching the Nashville at Southampton. The expenses of
England in the Trent affair are estimated at £2,000,000.
French official circles felt much
satisfaction at the settlement of the Trent affair, and on the Bourse there was
an immediate rise of one per cent. The Moniteur says that profound regret and
indignation has been aroused by our destroying the port of
Emperor has appointed Marshall Magnan grand master of the Free Masons in France.
The Masons have hitherto chosen their own grand masters.
The American consul has received
orders to protest against the admission of the Sumter to the port of Cadiz. It
was said that Spain would protect the American prisoners made by the Sumter.
It was reported that Russia had
threatened to recognize the Kingdom of Italy if the Pope does not condemn the
Polish clergy. The St. Petersburg Journal (official organ) congratulates Mr.
Seward upon his upright policy, and demands that England shall solemnly
guarantee neutral rights, apropos to the Trent affair.
We have news from Canton to the
30th November. Prince Kun, Chief of the Regency, had executed an imperial coup
d'etat in Pekin, by imprisoning all the members of the Cabinet of the Emperor,
and organizing a new Ministry.