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Civil War Harper's Weekly, December 10, 1864

Harper's Weekly was the most popular newspaper of the Civil War. These papers were read by millions of Americans, hungry for news of the war. Today, you can read these newspapers on our WEB site, and watch the war unfold week by week on the pages of these incredible newspapers.

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Refugees

Civil War Refugees

Sherman's March

Sherman's March

March to the Sea

March to the Sea

Prisoners

Prisoners

Stone River

Stone River Monument

Front

Battlefield Front

General Rawlings

General Rawlings

Slave Cartoon

Slave Cartoon

Prisoners

Exchanged Prisoners

Sherman's March Across Georgia

General Sherman's March Across Georgia

 

 

 

 

 

 

DECEMBER 10, 1864.]

HARPER'S WEEKLY.

787

(Previous Page) of sympathy with the national cause, and the sour and malignant spite of a defeated partisan.

Yet the papers and orators, who speak of this most unavoidable and truly sacred war as wicked and fratricidal, were the loudest supporters of the Mexican war and of the Seminole war, and have always carried a chip upon their shoulders begging Great Britain to knock it off. Thus they are not opposed to war in itself. They do not object to bloodshed. They do not grieve over disaster as such. Not at all. When they can conduct it, as they did the wars of which we speak when they can coin the blood into drachmas, where they can find profit in disaster, then, indeed, " war exists by the act of Mexico," then our honor imperatively requires that blood must be shed the blood of savages whom we have stung into rage, the blood of a weak and wasted people whom we can bully.

But when our own fellow citizens, fairly and constitutionally defeated in an election, fly to arms and overwhelm the country with all the untold horrors of sudden and ferocious war, then to resist them, to try to save by the sword to which they appeal the Government, and civil order itself to see the heroic darlings of every home following their high hearts and consciences to the field to endure the strain of taxation to face all the chances, present and remote, of so tremendous a civil convulsion this is a struggle in which the whooping abettors of filibustering and Mexican and Seminole wars can see nothing but fratricidal fighting, and a war worked with profit by speculating managers.

The policy which this kind of carping represents brought this war upon the country, and every day shows that the people at last fully understand, and therefore utterly despise, BENEDICT ARNOLD in whatever form he reappears.

THE CAMDEN AND AMBOY
NUISANCE.

" BETWEEN the great cities of the Union, New York and Philadelphia," says a correspondent, "a single Company monopolizes the right of way across the State of New Jersey, and while refusing the privilege to every other Company, furnishes upon a single track road accommodations which the people of any respectable village in the West would spurn with contempt."

In case of foreign war, as he truly remarks, the transmission of large bodies of troops and munitions between New York and Philadelphia would be practically stopped. There was, in deed, a time during the present rebellion when Washington was threatened. The Camden and Amboy Road was found to be utterly inadequate to the transport of the troops across Yew Jersey. One of the new roads carried some thirty thousand soldiers, running trains by day and night; and the Camden and Amboy Railroad Company has brought a writ to compel the Raritan and Delaware Bay Company to pay over into the Camden and Amboy treasury the receipts for this service to the imperiled Government.

To the State of New Jersey, notoriously controlled by this giant monopoly, no sane man looks for redress. But a bill has passed the United States House of Representatives authorizing the use of other roads in New Jersey for travelbetween other States, and it only awaits the action of the Senate to make it a law. It ought to be entitled " a Bill for the relief of the Nation," and should be passed by acclamation at the earliest day. The Camden and Amboy monopoly has become a national nuisance.

CAMPS OF PRISONERS.

THERE is no doubt that there was a formidable plot at Chicago for the release of the rebel prisoners, and turning them loose upon the city, abandoning it to the ravage of an immense armed and organized mob under the leadership of Marmaduke, a brother of the rebel General. The horror of such an event it is not easy to imagine, and we can well believe that the inhabitants of the city are still restless with the consciousness of the peril they have escaped. It will always remain as a proof of the odiousness of party spirit that the prompt action of the Government to prevent the insurrection and to save innocent men, women, and children, our neighbors and friends, from murder, wrong, and pillage at the hands of a drunken and brutal rabhle, was denounced by party newspapers as a reign of terror. Such a course was simply an appeal to the same passions to which Chicago was exposed, and from which it was happily saved.

But the circumstances should be very gravely considered, and ought to change the policy of the Government in regard to the disposition of prisoners. To establish an immense camp of prisoners in the immediate neighborhood of a great city, and close to all the dangerous elements in the population of every city, is to invite danger. Such a camp threatens the city. A sudden descent upon it by a few hundred determined ruffians, or the opening of the gates by stealth and treason, and the arming and release of the desperate horde to rage and ravage at their will, is not only easy but probable, and the revelations at Chicago are the proof of it. If

prisoners are to be massed, it should be in some fort or upon a carefully guarded island, and not near a large town.

But whether the Government changes its policy in this respect or not, we hope that the spectacle of party malignity, which the Chicago plot produced, will be freshly remembered for the benefit of the country. To stigmatize the summary exposure and prevention of a massacre, with consequences that can not be conceived, as a reign of terror inaugurated by the Government, compels the inquiry what those papers would have said of the plot itself if it had not been discovered. Would they have called it " a rising of the people," or " a great popular reaction," or " the people moving ?"

The demagogues who take the name of the people in vain, who denounce " the Government" as if it were a tyrant above them instead of being the people themselves constitutionally expressing and executing their will, are enemies of the country and of human nature quite as dangerous as armed rebels, and a thousand fold meaner.

RICHARD HILDRETH.

WE observe with the greatest regret a statement that RICHARD HILDRETH, the historian, who was appointed in 1861 Consul to Trieste, is hopelessly ill with a softening of the brain.

Mr. HILDRETH is one of the quiet, patient, persistent, and efficient workmen, who do less for their own fame than that of others He belongs to that great body of unrecognized students and authors who supply the hard earned material upon which others build; like the coral insects, who invisibly construct the reefs upon which islands rise, in whose foliage the most brilliant birds soar and sing.

His history of the United States, from the settlement of the country down to 1821, fills six volumes, and is a monument of faithful labor and extensive research. It traces with clearness the steadily progressive development of the great controversy which has now ended in civil war, and is a body of political information quite unsurpassed. It is none the less valuable that Mr. HILDRETH is a Federalist of the Hamiltonian school, for recent events show beyond question that HAMILTON was not altogether wrong in his estimate of the tendency of our system. The work has few graces of style ; but it is clear and concise and honest, and is indispensable to the student of American history.

Other works of Mr. HILDRETH reveal the same qualities of accuracy and thoroughness; and his long fidelity to the principles which brought the Administration into power four years ago was properly recognized by his consular appointment. We had hoped that his labors might be suspended and his health established in the soft Adriatic air. But if the news be true, Mr. HILDRETH is another of the learned and exhausted scholars by whose melancholy fate all hard workers with the brain should be warned.

CHARLES WESLEY'S POETRY.

ONE of the most striking features of the literary history of the last ten or fifteen years is the revival of hymn literature. The initial impulse seems to have been given by KEBLE'S "Christian Year." Almost every branch of the Church has shared in the movement, both in England and America. New collections of hymns, ancient and modern, have appeared with almost every year since 1850. Almost every school of Christian thought and feeling has given birth to a Lyra, the favorite title for such collections. The Lyra Germanica was followed by the Lyra Anglicans ; the Lyra Eucharistica by the Lyra Messianica ; and the Lyra Domestica appears to have closed that series. The less pretentious collections, under simpler titles, are too numerous to mention here. Many of them are ephemeral ; but two or three are good enough to be cherished in the Church as permanent possessions.

It is a little strange that the best of these collections should be the work, not of any school or sect, nor of any ecclesiastical person, but of an English lawyer. The Book of Praise, by Sir ROUNDELL PALMER, her Majesty's Solicitor-General, far excels all other recent gatherings of hymns in catholicity of spirit and in literary taste. It selects the best of old hymns and new, without reference to sect or party in the Church. The names of WATTS and WESLEY appear more frequently in its pages than any others proof at once of Sir ROUNDELL PALMER'S critical skill and of his freedom from sectarian prejudice.

It now appears that one of our New York merchants has devoted his leisure for years, like the British Solicitor-General, to studies in sacred song. The elegant fruit of these horoe subsecivoe is before us in a volume entitled "Sacred Poetry, selected from the Works of the Rev. CHARLES WESLEY, edited by a Lay Member of the Protestant Episcopal Church (New York: Kelley & Brother, 1864)." Such a collection has long been needed. The most appreciative critics have agreed, we think, in placing CHARLES WESLEY at the head of the Christian lyrists. It is recorded to the credit of WATTS, his great rival, that he said he would give all he had written for the honor of being the author of WESLEY'S magnificent hymn, entitled " Wrestling Jacob." The London Quarterly calls WESLEY " the most gifted minstrel of the modern Church." JAMES MONTGOMERY, at once poet and critic, declares that he "has celebrated the everlasting themes of Christian experience with an affluence of diction and a splendor of coloring rarely surpassed." Sir ROUNDELL PALMEP.-gives as the requisites of a good hymn, " simplicity, fresh

ness, and reality of feeling; a consistent elevation of tone ; and a rhythm easy and harmonious, but not jingling or trivial." No writer has met these requirements more fully than WESLEY. A mere setting forth of Christian doctrine in verse does not constitute a hymn ; the thought must be fitted to the needs of song ; the hymn must be really lyrical, or it will not endure. Such hymns can not be made to order ; they are the spontaneous product of Christian thought and feeling, working by and through the imagination. And in point of spontaneousness, poetic feeling, and harmony of numbers, CHARLES WESLEY is, of all hymn writers, facile princeps. Snatches of his verse haunt the memory of thousands who never heard his name. The highest test of poetry, according to COLERIDGE, is that " we return to it;" and the hymns of WESLEY stand this test to perfection.

The literary and Christian public will thank the editor of the beautiful volume before us for his labor of love. It contains the cream of CHARLES WESLEY'S poetry; not merely the hymns given in the ordinary books, but many others that have never before appeared. The form of the work, as to typography and binding, is equal to its matter. No more beautiful gift book for the holidays has appeared; and in this way it will, we trust, reach hundreds of families. And all who examine the book, and can appreciate it, will rejoice that Mr. THOMAS M'MULLEN'S hours of leisure have been so gracefully and profitably employed,

TO THE SANITARY COMMISSION.

THE following letter suggests that the Commission shall extend their business. But we are very cure that our correspondent will see that he suggests nothing less than that the Sanitary Commission shall become the great army sutler, and that it has no authority to do so. We wish most sincerely that Private — and all other victims could be relieved of the extortioners, but he must try again to devise a satisfactory method :

"CAMP OF DISMOUNTED MEN, NEAR CITY POINT, VIRGINIA.

"DEAR SIR,—None can so truly appreciate the labors of the Sanitary Commission as do we who are their beneficiaries in the camp and field. Their labors are gigantic, and at first sight it would appear unjust to seek to tax them with an additional burden ; but when I ask only a kindness to be compensated, I hope the proposition made will be considered.

" Sutlers, as they now exist among us, are a sort of necessary evil.' They charge us exorbitant prices for every little luxury the soldier craves, and one of their prices current would rival any yet given from rebeldom. Take a few items : Canned fruits, $1 to $1 25: sweet potatoes, 15 cents per pound; cheese, 60 cents; onions, 15 cents; 1 ounce sweet-oil, 15 cents; butter, 85 cents—and every thing in proportion. Now what we want is that the Sanitary Commission extend their field of labor so far as to furnish the few articles we want at compensating prices. Or if the Christian Commission were to do this, they would find the Gospel of low prices an excellent adjunct to the Gospel of the Prince of Peace. This would require but an outlay of constantly returning capital, and the employment of a small army of clerks. These clerks should be discharged or pensioned soldiers, when qualified ones can be had.

" Please make this suggestion, and oblige many victims " Yours,   PRIVATE ----."

 FOR THE SOLDIER'S CHILD.

THE New York State Volunteer Institute was established about eighteen months since at Suspension Bridge, Niagara County, New York, to furnish a home for and to educate the sons of dead or disabled officers and soldiers, and if funds enough can be raised it will be made a National instead of a State institution. It is a military school, but it proposes to fit the cadets for any honorable pursuit.

The appeals to public charity for projects connected with the war have been so many, and the applications for the advantages of the Institute have so largely increased, that the proprietors now propose to relieve those who wish to aid the institution by changing a donation into a purchase. That they may furnish shelter, food, clothing, and a liberal education to the children under their charge they ask fifty thousand subscriptions at two dollars each, for which every subscriber will receive a fine large steel plate portrait of the President, General GRANT, or any corps commander, and also a certificate representing a share in the distribution of real estate in and near the city of New York to be made on WASHINGTON'S birthday, February 22, 1865, the profits to be devoted to the benefit of the Volunteer Institute.

We are informed that the institution has the approval of General HOOKER, Governor SEYMOUR, the late General WADSWORTH, and Mr. RICE, Superintendent of Public Instruction, The President is Colonel W. H. YOUNG, and the Treasurer Captain H. R. RANDALL, P. O. box 4262, New York city.

DOMESTIC INTELLIGENCE.

GENERAL SHERMAN'S CAMPAIGN.

UNTIL Sherman has reached the sea we may expect no definite information concerning his progress. The rebel journals will not afford "aid and comfort to the enemy"

by heralding his successes, but so long as they keep silence we may be assured that he has met with no reverse, This much appears to be certain: that he started on November 14 in two columns on the line of the two principal rail roads that run eastward across the State from Atlanta, and that his advanced cavalry has taken Milledgeville, which lies between the two railroads above mentioned. These two railroads are the Georgia Railroad, which runs almost directly east from Atlanta to Augusta, on the Savannah River, and the Macon and Western Railroad, which at starting runs nearly south from Atlanta to Barnesville, and then takes an eastward course through Macon to Savannah. From Atlanta to Macon is 104 miles; from Macon to Savannah 180 miles. Sherman's orders for the march were issued November 9. The right wing, consisting of the Fifteenth and Seventeenth Corps, was to be commanded by General Howard, and the left, consisting of the Fourteenth and Twentieth, by General Slocum.

Each regiment to have one wagon and one ambulance, and each brigade a due proportion of ammunition and provision wagons and ambulances. The army to forage liberally off the country during the march, each brigade having its foraging company and arranging for at least ten days' provision ahead and three days' forage. No de-

struction of property to be permitted when the army is unmolested, but in districts which offer resistance a devastation to be made more or less relentless, according to the measure of hostility. Able bodied negroes may he taken, unless there should be a scarcity of supplies. It is probable that to General Sherman's cavalry will be committed the necessary destruction of property, while the infantry will move steadily onward to the new base of operations.

On the 18th General Beauregard issued a manifesto to the citizens of Georgia, calling upon them to rally around Governor Brown, to obstruct the roads in Sherman's front, flank, and rear, and promising to be with them soon. The latter promise he appears, from the late Macon papers, to have redeemed, leaving Hood to fight Thomas in Central Tennessee.

THE SHENANDOAH.

A cavalry reconnoissance was undertaken November 21 by Custer's and Powell's cavalry divisions under General Torbert. The enemy was found some distance beyond Mount Jackson, at Rood's Hill, on the North leech of the Shenandoah. Here an engagement took place, to which our cavalry, being outnumbered, was repulsed ; but it was ascertained that Kershaw's Division had left the Valley for Richmond. On the same day Devin's Division made a reconnoissance toward Front Royal.

EAST TENNESSEE.

General Breckinridge, after his fight with Burbridge on the banks of the Holston in West Virginia, proceeded with his army into East Tennessee, where about the middle of November he effected a junction with Vaughan. He then marched against General Gillem, who had, after his victory over Vaughan and a pursuit of the latter to Bristol, fallen back on Bull's Gap, where he waited in vain for reinforcements. On the 13th, having turned Gillem's position, Breckinridge, with Vaughan and Duke, made an attack a little after midnight, and succeeded in completely routing the Federal force. Our loss was about 400. Gillem then fell back to Strawberry Plains, where, at the bridge over the Holston, the enemy's advance was checked. Burbridge has been sent to Cumberland Gap to prevent that post from falling into the enemy's hands.

GENERAL THOMAS'S CAMPAIGN.

General Thomas evacuated Pulaski November 23; and that place, together with Huntsville and Decatur, are in the enemy's possession. Our forces fell back first to Columbia, where an attack made by Hood was repulsed, and then to Franklin, which is only twenty miles teeth of Nashville. It is conjectured that he fell back to receive reinforcements.

A reconnoissance lately made by our gun boats up the Tennessee developed the fact that the river was lined with rebel pickets from Johnsonville to Pine Bluff this district was under the command of the rebel General Lyon. Hood's army was reported by deserters and scouts to be 35,000 strong, with 37 guns.

THE PLOT TO BURN NEW YORK.

On the night of November 25 a band of conspirators, under rebel auspices, attempted to execute their long cherished plot to lay New York City in ashes. It was the intention of the conspirators to set fire to all the principal hotels, and to kindle a long line of fires that should insure the utter destruction of Broadway, while at the same time portions of the city remote from each other should each become a centre of distracting alarms. If the plot had succeeded nothing could have saved the city from utter destruction. The fires were kindled by leaving quantities of phosphorus where it would become exposed to the air in the rooms of the hotels, and the furniture of the rooms was so arranged as to help on the incipient conflagration. More than a dozen hotels were fired in this manner, and an attempt was also made to ignite Barnum's Museum. Among the hotels were the Astor, St. Nicholas, Fifth Avenue, Lafarge, St. James, Metropolitan, Howard, United States, Lovejoy's, Tammany, Belmont, Hanford, and others. Only a temporary and trifling injury was accomplished, owing to the well ordered action of the police. General Dix, on the 26th, issued orders to the effect that the culprits, upon their conviction, should be executed without a day's delay, and that all persons from insurgent States not registering their names at the Provost Marshal's office should be regarded and treated as spies.

NEWS ITEMS.

The Greyhound, General Butler's dispatch steamer, caught fire in the James River, November 27, and was burned to the water's edge. Generals Butler and Schenck and Admiral Porter were on board at the time, but escaped without injury. Ten horses belonging to General Butler and staff were consumed in the flames.

The pirate steamer Florida, while lying at anchor in Hampton Roads, was run into by an army steamer, on the 27th inst., and sunk in nine fathoms of water. The officers of the Florida have been confined in Fort Warren.

Brigadier-General Morgan L. Smith has taken command of Vicksburg, in place of Major-General Dana. Attorney-General Bates has tendered his resignation to President Lincoln, to take effect December 1, and it has been accepted.

Roger Pryor, now a private soldier in the Confederate army, but formerly a rebel General, was captured, November 25, by the Fifth Corps pickets of the Army of the Potomac, while attempting to exchange papers with our pickets, and has been brought to Washington and committed to the Old Capitol Prison. Pryor was taken in retaliation for the recent capture of Captain Burbridge by the rebel pickets, under similar circumstances, and claims that General Lee ordered the release of Burbridge on Saturday. But the latter has, since the capture of Pryor. been dismissed the army, for disobeying the order forbidding the exchange of papers with the enemy, and Pryor will possibly not regain his freedom on this plea.

General Hancock has orders to organize in the District of Columbia a new corps, which is to consist of 20,000 men who have been in the service for at least two years The corps is to be raised by January 1, 1865.

Advices from Halifax of November 19 state that the new rebel privateer Chickamauga had sailed for another cruise. In her previous cruise she destroyed American commerce to the value of half a million dollars.

FOREIGN NEWS.

JAPAN.

It is well known that, although Japan bas been forced to make treaties with the great Powers of Christendom, she has never been able to make the subordinate princes sufficiently tractable to insure their execution. The entrance to the Inland Sea, which separates the two smaller islands on the south from the main island of Japan, is by three straits. Of these the most convenient for commercial purposes is that known as the Straits of Simonosaki, on the west. The entrance has been strongly guarded by the Prince of Nagato, whose province commands it on the north. Of late the Prince has greatly strengthened the fortifications, with a view to the exclusion of foreign vessels. About a year ago French, English, and American vessels were fired upon. Lately the English vessel Cormorant had a gun fired across her bow. It was then determined by all the foreign ministers at Yokohama that the forts must be reduced. Sixteen vessels of war were engaged in the expedition. The American Minister not having a man-of-war at his command sent a sailing vessel to represent the American flag. Half of the vessels were English, three were French, and five Dutch. After three days' fighting the straits were opened. The Allies lost forty-six men, and the Japanese from two to three hundred. The forts are to be dismantled.

MEXICO.

Advices from Mexico say that the military force of Juarez at Oajaca, where he himself was at the date of latest accounts, consists of about seven thousand men, but that more than half of them are new recruits, unfit for immediate service. These advices, which come through imperial channels, detail extensive spoliation of Church and private property by Juarez's officers. Oajaca was surrounded by earth work fortifications.


 

 

  

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