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Robert E. Lee Portrait
Two men went out from the
In the autumn midnight gray;
Over the quaking, croaking swamp
To the edge of the woodland still
With rifle and spade went they.
A hunting owl wailed out to its
And a picket stood as still
In the meadow below as the
By the beaded tent lights thickly
On the silver-threaded rill.
'Twas long ere the picket moved
And there was no time to lose;
The pits must be dug by the dawn
Said one, "We are digging graves,
And the other whispered, "Whose?"
With the morning light a column
Moved upward along the hill
Toward the hidden pits, but a
Close in the front made the
A moment, and then stand still.
The check won a battle-field that
On the morrow the dead were laid
Head to foot in a trench of clay,
But two apart in the front that
Were buried without a spade.
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 19, 1863.
THE FALL CAMPAIGN.
IT is pretty generally understood
General Lee is massing his forces for a third raid into
Pennsylvania. Rumor states—with considerable plausibility—that the rebel armies
under Bragg, Johnson, and Pemberton have been stripped of men to swell the
invading force from Virginia. The losses at
Gettysburg have been fully repaired, and it seems not unlikely that before
the end of the month General Lee may lead 125,000 or 150,000 veterans across the
Potomac to the familiar plains of Southern Pennsylvania. What is likely to be
We have three armies co-operating
with each other on what may be termed the field of operations.
General Meade is
in face of Lee with an army which is being swelled daily by arrivals of
conscripts, and by the release of the forces which
Governor Seymour's party
political trickery kept here for the enforcement of the draft.
Rosecrans, with an army as large as can be manoevred on any ordinary
battle-field, to say nothing of a large corps under
Burnside acting in concert
with him, is crossing the Tennessee, and taking ground in Northern Alabama, and
Eastern Georgia and Tennessee.
General Grant, who has arrived at
New Orleans, is
massing his splendid veteran army for operations in Southern Alabama and
Mississippi, and may be heard from, perhaps, before these lines are read. We
have two more armies under
Gilmore, which are operating with vigor in
their respective spheres; but as their movements have no direct bearing on the
probable issue of another campaign in Maryland or Pennsylvania, we pass them
over for the present.
Now, if Lee takes advantage of
the cool weather of September to move northward, as the necessities of the
position will probably compel him to do, the policy of General Meade will be
very obvious. It will be that of
General Hooker—retreat. No opposition will be
made to Lee's passage of the Potomac. He will not be met any where on the way.
He will be allowed to enter Maryland and Southern Pennsylvania at his leisure.
The exemplary patriots who charged our volunteers six cents a glass for water,
and of whom only one man in a whole village or town volunteered to fight against
the invader, will be permitted to enjoy the society of the rebels to their
heart's content. The banks of the Susquehanna, Pittsburg, and one or two other
points north will be fortified by way of setting some limit to Lee's march. But
he will be suffered to get his army deeper into the Free States than he has ever
yet penetrated. As soon as he has pushed to a reasonable point north his
Southern communications will be cut. The Army of the Potomac will take position
south of him, while fortified places, garrisoned by Northern militia, will shut
him off from further movement northward. The result of this strategy, which was
plainly drawn out at the War Department by General Hooker, will be a battle in
which the odds will be enormously against the rebels, and in which their defeat
will involve the surrender of their army.
Meanwhile General Grant will be
taking care of Mobile, the fall of which—if properly attacked by land and
sea—can not be a matter of doubt; and Generals Rosecrans and Burnside,
penetrating the rebel country by way of Chattanooga and
Knoxville, will complete
its bisection east and west as Grant and Banks have bisected it north and south.
Charleston is now as seriously menaced by Rosecrans as by Gilmore. If
Chattanooga falls—and Burnside's
operations, combined with those of Rosecrans, seem to render its fall
certain—Rome and Atlanta follow, and Charleston stands defenseless on the land
Altogether, the fall campaign
opens promisingly, and though the ultimate issue is in the hand of the God of
battles, we think we are entitled to hope much.
THE British have launched another
pirate, iron-clad this time, intended to prey upon American commerce, and to
drive American vessels out of the carrying trade for the benefit of British
bottoms. The craft is said to have got to sea. Her commander is a Southerner,
but her crew, like herself, are British, and she is as thoroughly an English
vessel as the
Warrior or the Agamemnon.
It is suggested that she will
come to New York to bombard the city. We deem it very likely. We can not help
thinking that the
Alabama showed a want of pluck in not coming here
before. New York is comparatively defenseless. A British pirate might steam up
our bay, under cover of night, destroy half the city with shells in three or
four hours, and escape scathless before morning. Steam and long-range artillery
have changed the nature of maritime warfare, and no sea-board city is safe. We
might safely bombard Liverpool or Southampton, and escape, if we, like the
British, had taken to the piratical business. As it is, there is no good reason
why the new iron-clad should not avenge upon New York or Boston the destruction
of Charleston, and the chances are that she will.
Various suggestions have been
made in the papers in view of such an event. One journal proposes war, instant
and immediate. Another advises a confiscation of British property. Others
We will not embarrass the
Administration by any recommendations on the subject. No man who has carefully
and honestly watched the course of the Government can doubt that the President
is jealously alive to the necessity of protecting our interests against foreign
nations. And no one but the President really understands whether or no we can at
the present time super-add a foreign war to the civil contest in which we are
engaged. If, therefore,
Mr. Lincoln should determine to endure the bombardment,
by a British vessel, of New York or Boston, without retaliation, it will be safe
to conclude that we are not in a position to retaliate. But if, on the other
hand, he should direct that such an outrage should be instantly avenged by the
seizure of every British vessel in American waters, and the instant dismissal of
every British subject from American soil, he may rely upon it that, at any cost,
the American people would sustain him.
NATIONAL AND STATE GOVERNMENTS.
IN a late article signed B. J. L.
there is a very clear statement of one view of the relations of the National
Government to the rebellion. The doctrine of the article is, that unless the
rebellion wholly succeeds it fails entirely; that the Union has not been
affected unless it is destroyed; and that, of course, no State has ever "gone
away." The Constitution of certain States has been overpowered by rebels, just
as the authorities of the city of New York were defied, and the laws, for a
time, were paralyzed during the riot. When the riot was conquered the laws
resumed their sway without conditions or "reconstruction." So it will be with
the Constitutions of the States when the rebellion is subdued.
In this view the author allows
that the States may continue to hold slaves and make slavery legal within their
limits. But such State laws must apply to new persons, because all the persons
who are now enslaved were, with some exceptions, freed by the Proclamation. If
South Carolina wishes to hold slaves hereafter she must buy them in Kentucky,
Tennessee, or in some part of the district excepted from the emancipation order.
But be concludes that this is impossible. The practical re-establishment of
slavery among a population wholly free will not be attempted.
The objection to this view is
that it deprives the Government of the power of securing peace. When, for
instance, the rebels are conquered in Virginia, does the State Constitution
become operative by the mere fact that arms have been laid down? If so, and all
who are voters under that instrument may at once send members to Congress, what
have we gained by the war but a reopening of the struggle? On the other hand, if
the National Government insists that no one shall vote in Virginia who has not
taken an oath prescribed by itself, then the Constitution of Virginia does not
resume its functions.
To assume that the men now in
rebellion, because they may be overcome by superior force, are therefore at once
loyal and safe citizens, is impossible. The body of the people of the rebel
section are in insurrection. War exists between them and the Government, and the
war is waged by all the means and upon all the terms of war. By the necessity of
the case the whole population is treated as belligerent, exactly as all
Englishmen would be in case of war between America and England, however friendly
some Englishmen might feel. Upon
what other ground does the
Proclamation rest? If the rebels are individuals, and not a community, why are
the slaves of the community, and not of the rebel proprietors alone,
emancipated? Clearly the same right which the Government unquestionably has to
emancipate the slaves of a hostile community for its assistance in time of war,
it has to secure peace when it has conquered the enemy, upon such conditions as
it considers wise. It may insist upon guarantees exactly as it would in treating
with a foreign power. For, practically—so far as fighting and the course of war
are concerned—the rebels have been a foreign power. If the war had been with
English or French troops in possession of the Southern section, it would be
conducted exactly as it is to-day. Therefore, when the military force of the
insurrection is subdued, the United States Government will rightfully hold the
rebel section by the strong hand until it is satisfied that there is no danger
to its peace; and it must itself be the judge of its own satisfaction.
If some such general view be not
the true one then the Government can deal with the rebels merely as rioters. But
it has long since relinquished that position. The Supreme Court held, and Judge
Taney did not dissent, that since July, 1861, a state of war has existed. Thus
what was a matter of fact has become also a matter of law.
Nor does this view authorize
other conditions than submission to the Constitution; for the emancipation edict
being, as the President and the best authorities hold, "in pursuance" of the
Constitution, it secures the condition which would be otherwise imposed as the
security of peace. But the edict does, so far as the present slaves are
concerned, conflict with the State constitutions and laws which recognize
slavery. It is not true, therefore, that those constitutions and laws are merely
dormant, and upon the submission of the rebellious citizens will resume all
their force; because all the persons now known to those laws as slaves have been
freed by a power beyond the States.
Whether such States will have the
power under their constitutions to establish slavery hereafter is a question to
be hereafter considered. We agree entirely with B. J. L., that they are not
likely to try the experiment. We agree with him also that "the National
Government will have no more right to interfere with the constitution and laws
of South Carolina when her people shall become loyal and obedient members of the
Republic, after the rebellion, than before." But does not this very statement
imply that the Government has the right during the rebellion? And if so, how can
it be said that the State constitution is "utterly untouched in all its
The more thoroughly the question
is considered, and in the calm and careful spirit of B. J. L., the better for
the country now and always.
FRANCE IN MEXICO.
THE editorial article in the last
number of the Weekly upon "The Mexican Empire," stated very clearly the
deliberate insult offered to this country by Louis Napoleon in putting his foot
upon the Monroe doctrine, and the ultimate tendency of the French occupation of
Mexico to destroy the Mexican church. Meanwhile, in pursuance of the French
policy, we ought not to be surprised by an early recognition of "the
Confederacy" by the Emperor, unless we suppose that he means to abandon his
Mexican project. If he does not, he knows perfectly well that the United States
can not look quietly on while France plants herself at our frontier upon the
ruins of a power friendly to us. What then is his probable and wisest course?
He came to Mexico because he
supposed the destruction of this Government only a question of time. His agent
in this country, M. Mercier, is the most faithful friend and well-wisher of the
rebels, and the rebel agent in France, Mr. Slidell, has been upon the
friendliest terms with the Emperor. From these persons he has constantly heard
what he wished to believe. Under pretense of securing the French debt he sent an
army to Mexico, in the expectation that it would be victorious at the same time
with the rebellion. The first necessity of the new Confederacy would be a strong
alliance, and France would be at hand and quite ready. Of course so long as the
rebels were fighting successfully there was no need of discussing recognition.
That could come when the parent government owned its defeat, or when it was
evidently defeated. But now that the triumph of the rebellion, which is
essential to his scheme, becomes doubtful, what must he do but relinquish the
scheme or improve its prospects of success, and how can he do this more fully at
the present time than by recognizing the Confederacy? War with the United
States, he will say, is certain if I do not leave Mexico. But I mean to stay in
Mexico. Is it, therefore, not wiser for me to risk war with the United States
when both their hands are engaged than when they are free?
Besides this, French recognition
would give the utmost moral support to the rebellion, and throw upon us the
responsibility of declaring war, while it would certainly delight England and
open the way for all foreign powers to follow.
Meanwhile one war at a time is
enough. If the "midnight conspirator" who sits upon the throne of France should
think it essential to his plans in Mexico to strengthen the rebel chance of
success by offering a moral support which will imply material aid when
necessary, we could not alter our present course and purpose. But because we
have had no serious foreign trouble we ought not to suppose that we may have
none. The best way to meet it is to expect it. Forewarned is forearmed.
A FRIEND in Philadelphia sends a
little pamphlet, which has been widely circulated, urging upon all faithful
citizens the duty of active participation in the primary meetings, and adds to
some excellent suggestions of his own the agreeable fact that at the late ward
meetings in Philadelphia a
class of men were present who
have hitherto abstained from all part in them.
The war, it is certain, will
teach us many things. Not the least important of them will be the truth, that we
shall have saved the Government in vain if we do not with the same spirit purify
its operation. The premium which a despotic Government offers to every man is
personal freedom from the annoyance of its management. The price that every
citizen in a Republic must pay for its perpetuity is his willing share in the
duties and vexations of its operation. Do we get any thing in the world without
paying the fullest price for it; and do we soberly expect to have the greatest
public blessing of all, a good Government, for nothing? And the officers of that
Government are not elected at the polls, they are elected at the caucus which
puts into our hands the ballots we are to use at the polls. It is in vain that
you come to the polls declaring that neither John of the one party nor James of
the other are fit men for the office, but that Joseph is precisely the man. Your
choice practically lies between John and James. You may vote for Joseph, but
only to increase the majority of a candidate you think unfit.
The work of this Government is
done at the primary meetings. You say that they are made up of bruisers,
blackguards, and ruffians, and you will have nothing to do with them. When you
say it you deliberately abdicate your duty as an American citizen, and so far as
you are concerned you take care that the Government shall be in the hands of
rascals and bullies. If you are not willing to take off your slippers—to hire a
horse, if you live in the country—to drive a few miles in the cold or heat—to
see and hear and smell disagreeable people—to argue with stupidity and to bear
with prejudice, you are not fit to be a citizen of a republic. If you are a
farmer, and think your corn will be weeded if you stay in the house for fear of
dirtying your fingers, when harvest comes every stook of your miserable crop
will cry Fool, fool! If you are a citizen, and think Government takes care of
itself, your increased taxes, your complicated burdens, growing crime, disorder,
and civil war will cry Fool, fool! to you from every lost right, and every
guarantee of peace overthrown.
It is not labor which you can
honorably escape, because it can not be done by another. Every man breathes for
himself, and he votes for himself. The duty can not be delegated, because every
man's vote is wanted; and when you reflect upon the machinery of a primary
meeting as it is now managed, upon the character of the men in most districts
who control it, and upon the miserable part of dummy which is left to the voter
at the polls, your indignation, if not your patriotism, may be aroused.
Another day we shall return to
these points, and often to the general subject.
Quantrill did at
Lawrence, in Kansas, upon a large scale, what has been done every where in the
war upon a large and small scale by the chivalry. The ardent children of the
sunny South, whether whittling bones into bracelets, or scooping skulls into
cups, or shooting negroes by the light of a lantern, or hanging and torturing
Union men, or devastating and massacring at Lawrence, or shelling a town, as in
the following account, before demanding its surrender, show the same fine sense
of honor, and the same noble impetuosity, gallantry, and high spirit which have
always marked their conduct in Congress and society
NEWVILLE, CUMBERLAND COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA.
SIR,—In your account of the
Carlisle by the rebels, in your paper of July 25, you mistake in
saying they sent in several flags of truce to General Smith, asking the
surrender of the town, before commencing the bombardment. No flag of truce was
sent in until the shelling had commenced some time.
It was but one of the many
chivalrous acts which they were the authors of during their stay in our valley.
Hoping you will make the correction, I remain, etc.,
FORTY DAYS' WARNING.
IF any timid soul nervously asks
whether he may not take the veracious
Beauregard's word and believe General
Gilmore to be a barbarian and a monster, it read the General's letter to the
Spanish Consul in Charleston, who was solicitous for the safety of his
fellow-countrymen in that city. For what purpose did the veracious Beauregard
and the Spanish Consul and other people in Charleston suppose that Gilmore was
Wagner? Did they fancy that his object was Morris Island?
Not at all. They knew that it was the city, and that it was their duty, if they
disliked shells and cannon-half, to depart. But the amiable gentry who are
fighting for the inestimable right of whipping women, flaying men, and breeding
babies for sale, preferred a fling of "inhumanity" against the General who was
so wicked as to use guns that threw shells five miles. So the commander says,
"I had supposed that ample time
had been given for this purpose [of departure]. The commencement of the attack
on the defenses of Charleston, some forty days ago, is recorded as having given
plain and emphatic warning that the city might be fired on at any time."
QUESTIONS AND VERY EASY ANSWERS.
THE rebel Maury, in a letter to
the London Times, says that "New York is becoming the champion of States Rights,
and to that extent is taking the Southern ground."
Under whose auspices is it taking
the rebel ground? Horatio Seymour's.
Whose election was hailed by the
rebels as a good augury for their success? Horatio Seymour's.
Whose nomination did Fernando
Wood, notoriously disloyal, enthusiastically support? Horatio Seymour's.
Whose speeches have constantly
thrown the (Next Page)