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Robert E. Lee Portrait
WE devote page 168 to
illustrations of MEMPHIS, Tennessee, from sketches taken before the war by our
famous artist, Porte Crayon, of Virginia, now an officer in the army of the
Memphis is now the only large
city in Tennessee which is not in the hands of Union troops. It stands on an
elevated bluff on the left bank of the Mississippi, at the head of ship
navigation, 790 miles by the river from
New Orleans, and 240 from Cairo. It is
the termination of the Memphis and Charleston Railroad, and is a place of much
business activity, being the distributing point for the produce of West
Tennessee. The rebellion has probably ruined it. The following extract from a
Cairo letter gives an idea of the state of affairs there at present:
The Memphis papers repeat the old
catch-words about fighting till every man, woman, and child is killed, and the
impossibility of subjugating the South; but abound in rebukes to the people for
their lethargy, and implore them to fly to arms. They denounce with great
bitterness citizens of Memphis for refusing to take Confederate money, and at
the same time paying a premium of 25 per cent. for "Lincoln Treasury notes;" and
one of them adds: "We warn these men to make their pace with their Creator, for
this city will never be abandoned with them in it!" Even a year of the reign of
terror has not produced "unanimity" in Memphis.
THE Publishers of
congratulate their readers upon the appearance in this Number of the first part
of a new serial tale entitled "NO NAME," by WILKIE COLLINS, Esq., author of "The
Woman in White." Its opening gives promise of the same wonderful power and
matchless dramatic skill which entranced the readers of "The Woman in White." It
is seldom that a periodical is enabled to furnish its subscribers with such a
series of attractive tales as have appeared consecutively for the past two years
in Harper's Weekly, from the pens of Dickens, Wilkie Collins, and Bulwer. The
commencement of this tale affords a good opportunity for parties residing in the
country to form clubs, and obtain Harper's Weekly at the reduced price of
The crisis which the war has
reached imparts fresh interest to the war-pictures which are appearing in every
number of Harper's Weekly. We have now regular Artist Correspondents, to wit:
MR. A. R. WAUD, with the army of
MR. ALEXANDER SIMPLOT, With
MR. HENRY MOSLER, with
THEO. R. DAVIS, with
MR. ANGELO WISER, with
besides a large number of
occasional and volunteer correspondents in the Army and Navy at various points.
These gentlemen will furnish us faithful sketches of every battle which takes
place, and every other event of interest, which will be reproduced in our pages
in the best style. People who do not see Harper's Weekly will have but a limited
comprehension of the momentous events which are occurring.
The circulation of Harper's
Weekly being now over 120,000 copies each week, it is the best advertising
medium in the country.
SATURDAY, MARCH 15, 1862.
THE evacuation of
the rout of the force lately gathered in Tennessee, render it certain that
before the month of March expires the flag of the Union will float triumphantly
over the waters of the Mississippi from the Delta to Cairo.
There has been a great deal of
blatant talk at the turbulent city of Memphis about burning down houses and
"dying on green sods;" but when it comes to stern reality it turns out that each
man wants to burn somebody else's house and to leave his own standing; and as to
the parties who want to die, they are always the first to run away. There may be
another fight at Memphis, and perhaps some skirmishing by the river side; but
the heat and burden of the Mississippi campaign are over, and nothing can
prevent our gun-boats descending the stream to its mouth whenever they are
prepared for the voyage.
Government has already granted
permits to trade along the Cumberland and the Tennessee. A similar relaxation of
the rule of war will doubtless shortly be granted in reference to the banks of
the Mississippi. A few cargoes of groceries and dry goods will very quickly
convince the rebels of the fully of further persistence in disloyalty.
THE BRITISH AND THEIR PRESS.
THE published correspondence
between the Governments of Great Britain and that of the United States, and the
speeches of the Foreign Minister of England in Parliament, leave nothing to be
desired by the people of this country. With the single exception of the
precipitate recognition of the rebels as belligerents on the evening before Mr.
Adams arrived in London, the British Government seems to have done nothing and
to have said nothing to which legitimate exception can be taken in this country.
It would, perhaps, have been more consistent, as well as more politic, for the
British to have pronounced at the outset of the contest against the recognition
of a power based on the corner-stone of human
slavery, and the essential
principle of whose system was perpetual and infinitesimal disintegration. But we
have no right to complain of this. We had no more right to expect England to
denounce our rebels than she had to
expect us to denounce the Irish
insurgents of 1848. She has pursued from the start a policy, which, however
impolitic in our opinion, has been strictly fair toward the United States
according to the law of nations.
How comes it, this being the
case, that the tone of the British press has been so uniformly hostile toward
this country, and so grossly unjust and malignant?
We must conclude, in the first
place, that British journals are not as well informed as journals of equal
standing in this country. It is evident that neither the Times, nor the Post,
nor the Globe, nor the Herald have been in the secrets of the ruling party in
Great Britain. They have falsified the purposes and intentions of their own
Government as grossly as they belied ours. The discovery confirms the statement
of a recent British writer, who says that, in England, newspapers are despised
by the ruling class, and their writers are sometimes suffered to gather the
crumbs which fall from great men's tables, but are never permitted to take
seats, or to share the confidence of those who do.
How came it that, while the
British Government was disposed to act fairly by us, and the interests and honor
of the British people were obviously concerned on our side, the British press
should have so unanimously taken the part of the rebels?
There are but two possible
explanations of this phenomenon. One is, that British newspapers are more
accessible to corrupt approaches than leading journals here, and that the rebel
envoys expended money freely in the purchase of British journalists. Here, it
would be impossible to secure the favor of the leading journals by the use of
money. It may be that the rule is different in England, and that the Times,
Post, Globe, Herald, Saturday Review, etc., etc., can all be retained by a
judicious use of banknotes.
The other explanation of the
phenomenon is suggested by the normal misanthropy of the British. Englishmen
hate every body in general, and almost always somebody in particular. Their
favorite object of hatred and abuse for the past ten years has been the Emperor
Napoleon-the best friend England ever had: him they have vilified and
misrepresented and traduced with a malignity and a cowardice scarcely credible.
Since the rebellion broke out here, we seem to have succeeded the French in the
disfavor of the British, and it is possible that the English papers have abused
us merely in order to pander to the national taste for vilifying some one, and
so maintaining the national character.
Whatever be the secret of the
wicked language used by the London journals in reference to this country for the
past six or eight months, they have certainly achieved two results: first, they
have utterly discredited themselves, and emancipated us from the provincial
respect for British opinion which was previously cherished here; and secondly,
they have sown seeds of discord which will render it extremely difficult for the
leading statesmen of this country to settle the next dispute with England
without a war.
THE PORT ROYAL FACT.
ON Monday last the steamer
Atlantic sailed from New York for
Port Royal with a cargo of clergymen,
schoolmasters, and schoolmistresses, Bibles, school-books, agricultural tools,
sewing machines, etc. The cargo was destined for the use of some 10,000 persons
with black skins, male and female, who are now tenants of the sea-islands
occupied by the United States on the coast of South Carolina and Georgia. The
expense of it was chiefly borne by a charitable institution lately established
at Boston, with branches at New York, etc.; which, we will take leave to say,
appears to us to be fully as well entitled to the support of benevolent
Christians as any foreign mission in existence.
We take it that this is a GREAT
FACT, which all the fine talk of pro and anti slavery orators in and out of
Congress can net gainsay or dissolve. Here are over tell thousand persons with
black skins, who are living under the protection of the United States flag, and
whom we are going to educate—the males to work and manage sea-island plantations
of cotton on scientific principles; the females to sew and comprehend domestic
economy; both to read, write, cipher, and realize moral and religious
obligations. In a short time this colony of ten thousand persons with black
skins will be twenty thousand, and by-and-by it will be two hundred thousand.
Now it inhabits two or three extremely fertile and happy islands; presently it
will monopolize all the outlying islets and will probably encroach on the main
land itself. For facts of this kind are of their nature progressive.
Civilization and Christianity take no steps backward.
It strikes us that if some of our
leading men would be so good as to forget for a while their own importance, and
the necessity of keeping themselves constantly before the apple of the American
eye, this Port Royal fact would, without their aid, achieve, quietly and
noiselessly, without bloodshed, and without rapine or violence, some of the
extremely desirable results for which they are so fatiguingly clamorous, and
which it is the business of this great war to achieve. If we contribute a small
share of our
substance to impart to those
unfortunate persons with black skins, who are thrown by the rebellion upon our
tender mercy, some portion of the educational and moral advantages which our
enlightened laws secure for the meanest of our own people, Providence will
probably render them the instrument of effecting a revolution which will change
the face of American destiny.
It has been proposed by some
well-intentioned but weak-minded people to deport these persons with black skins
to various islands or continents very far away indeed. And it has also been
proposed by some evil-intentioned but strong-minded people to deport—not the
persons with black skins, but other persons with white skins who are in arms
against us, and have cost us already more than a thousand dollars apiece, to
other continents or islands still further away. It is impossible to say to what
straits this Government of ours may by-and-by be reduced. It may go into the
transportation business for a living. When it does, these rival propositions
will doubtless be fairly considered. Meanwhile, the GREAT FACT at Port Royal
stares us in the face, and until some better thing can be suggested, we hope
that every body who can spare a dollar will help to send Bibles, and
spelling-books, and teachers, and sewing machines, and cotton gins, and other
implements of civilization there, for the benefit of these poor persons with
black skins whom this atrocious rebellion has thrown upon our hands.
WE are not of those enthusiasts
who suppose that the rebellion is to disappear in a night. Its roots are in all
the strongest human passions—pride, ignorance, prejudice, interest, and hatred.
The rebels are practically united; for there is doubtless much less Union
feeling in the Cotton States than there was Toryism in the old colonies at the
Revolution. There may not be much practical Terrorism in the rebel section, for
there is no need of it. Indeed, the Union feeling of Tennessee and Kentucky is
probably half conditional loyalty. In other words, it is not an unreserved
acceptance of the Constitution, with the candid intention of abiding by it—but
it is a candid intention of abiding by it if it works agreeably to their wishes.
Now one thing is clearly
essential in the final settlement of this war—and that is, that the principle of
armed rebellion against the result of a constitutional election must be utterly
annihilated. Any thing less than that is the absolute triumph of the revolution.
If, while they are still in arms, the rebels should say that they will lay them
down upon condition that they can have certain guarantees, and those guarantees
are given—then, of course, they conquer, and the precedent will be established
that a defeated party has only to appear in arms to secure what they want. Any
other terms to rebellion than those offered by General Foster at Roanoke and
General Grant at Fort Donelson—"immediate and unconditional surrender" —are a
betrayal of the Government and the end of civil society.
If when that surrender is made,
and the leaders of the bloody and causeless revolt have been dealt with as the
national justice may decide, and the ordinary, peaceful operations of life are
resumed, a convention should be constitutionally called, and changes in the
fundamental law should be constitutionally made, there might be regret, but
there could be no complaint of foul play. If no changes should be made, and the
convention dissolving, the people should acquiesce in the result, it would be
clear that peace had been actually secured.
To say to the rebels that if they
will lay down their arms there shall be a convention, and to add that at that
convention certain results shall be achieved, is to show to all mankind that our
Government is an imbecile sham, and our apparent love of country a lie. Such an
act would be national suicide. Whoever advises such a course, if he understands
himself, is the worst of traitors; if he does not understand himself, he is a
Conditional loyalty is a "pretty
A REPRESENTATIVE MAN.
THE fact that the Secretary of
War was reported by telegraph to have said something which he did not say, and
which was evidently reported, not through inadvertence, but to serve a purpose,
naturally excited public concern. The same telegraph presently sent the name of
Mr. S. L. M. Barlow, of New York, as the author of the false report. Mr. Barlow
denied it immediately; and being accused by the Tribune of secret treasonable
sympathies, he published a card in vindication aids loyalty. In that card he
quotes from his correspondence with some of the rebel leaders and their
advisers, during the winter of 1860-'61, and in that correspondence there is one
most remarkable passage.
Mr. Barlow is known in the city
as an active politician of the strongest Southern sympathy. He is known beyond
the city as one of the few gentlemen who, at the time of the John Brown
excitement, hastened, with more party zeal than knowledge, to implicate the
great body of their political opponents in the direct responsibility for John
Brown's enterprise. They sought especially to implicate Mr. Gerrit Smith in the
matter, but upon his prompt summons to them to establish their charge in court
they made an ample apology.
Mr. Barlow is further known as
one of the gentlemen who, before the last Presidential election, and when the
men who are now the rebel leaders openly and solemnly warned the country that
they would try to destroy the Government if they did
not succeed at the polls, still
supported those leaders in every way, and endeavored to carry the election under
a threat of revolution.
Mr. Barlow is also known as one
of the gentlemen who entertained
Mr. W. H. Russell, LL.D., upon his arrival in
this country last winter, and who supplied him with that view of the public
sentiment which he depicted in his first letters to the London Times.
Upon the other hand, when it
became clear to Mr. Barlow that his political friends at the South were about to
do what they had frankly declared they meant to do—but what they would certainly
never have attempted but for the position of open sympathy and support in their
threats which Mr. Barlow and his friends occupied—then, as appears by the
extracts of his correspondence now published, he vainly sought to undo the work
he had done. He wrote to the South that armed resistance to the Government would
result in a united North. The 13th of April justified his words.
But the remarkable passage in
this correspondence which has suggested these observations is as follows: In a
letter of the 27th of November, 1860—three weeks after the election—Mr. Barlow
wrote to a gentleman then in the Senate, having, as he believed, great weight
with the Southern leaders: "What will be agreed to in my judgment is this: a
Convention to alter the Constitution, so that the just rights of the South shall
be maintained by the Constitution itself, and forever removed from the arena of
politics in Congress."
In other words, as the rebel
leaders proposed to destroy the Government because they could not
constitutionally get what they wanted, therefore the Constitution should be
changed to give it to them. Peace was to be secured by the surrender of the
Government to a threat of revolution.
Mr. Barlow doubtless spoke for
many citizens then, and when opportunity offers he and they will again, of
course, be ready for what is called a compromise. The next question therefore
is, whether the change of the Constitution, for the absolute immunity of
slavery, which they were willing to yield to a threat of revolution, they will
be willing to grant to that revolution actually attempted for a year, and shown
to be futile and hopeless by its very cry for compromise; or whether, in common
with other loyal citizens, they will insist that the Government shall be
unconditionally maintained, and this method of appealing from the ballot to the
bullet shall be hopelessly and forever defeated?
THE weakness, and sadness, and
dispirited querulousness of Davis's inaugural address will have struck every
reader. By the side of the brisk impudence and cool falsehood of Mr. Speaker
Bocock the inaugural is hopeless and tame. It was not necessary to hear that the
day was rainy and that there were no cheers, for the speech is all gloom, and
has no cheer in itself. The wretched man spoke more truly than he thought—" The
day, the memory, and the purpose seem fitly associated." The day was dark; the
memory was of perjury; the purpose was injustice.
The daily papers will have
already followed his poor equivocations, his spiritless misrepresentations, with
searching eye and scorching finger. But there is one point at which every man
will smile. It is his remark, that "This rule of voluntary association, which
can not fail to be conservative, by securing just and impartial government at
home, does not diminish the security of the obligations by which the Confederate
States may be bound to foreign nations. In proof of this, it is to be remembered
that at the first moment of asserting their right of secession, these States
proposed a settlement on the basis of a common liability for the obligations of
the General Government."
But if every State secedes from
the confederacy, who pays the debts of the confederacy? And if, being purely
voluntary, you can not coerce a State to fulfill its joint obligations, what
security has the creditor?
This ghastly delusion of
secession at last stands fully exposed. It is simply a loud way of asserting the
right of every man to do as he chooses. There is no reason why the people of
Berkshire County, beyond the Connecticut and among the hills, should not secede
from Eastern Massachusetts because of high taxes, or for any other reason they
choose to allege; and no reason why every town should not secede from every
other, as fast as it wishes to, if this futile dogma could be seriously
entertained. It is the end of civil society, and the lapse into barbarism.
Yet in our system secession is no
less a dangerous disease than scarlet fever in the human system. Like that, it
will linger and linger. The poison will be slowly eradicated, and the patient
will suffer long and sadly. Because our arms are at length beginning to win the
victory of which we have always been sure—because the anaconda begins now to
contract his folds—we are not to suppose that all is over, and that peace will
return with summer. When the sea has been heaved by a storms so fierce as this,
the waters will long toss and roar. We have shown and are showing our patriotism
by our valor; we have hereafter to show it by our patience. To rout the enemy of
our national peace finally and thoroughly, the nation has yet to wait longer
than the army on the Potomac has waited.
IN his inaugural address, the
saddest speech of the times,
Jefferson Davis, with more circumlocution than
Stephens, declares that the rebellion was undertaken to save slavery. Stephens
says frankly its object is a system of government and society of which slavery
shall be the corner-stone. Davis, more mealy-mouthed, says,
"The people of the States now
confederated * * * * believed that to remain longer in the Union would subject
them to the continuance of a disparaging discrimination, submission to which
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