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Civil War Harper's Weekly, March 5, 1864

This site features Harper's Weekly Civil War newspapers. These papers allow you to read important information on the war not available elsewhere. They contain incredible illustrations created by eye-witnesses to the historic events depicted. This is a valuable resource for serious students and researchers.

(Scroll Down to See Entire Page, or Newspaper Thumbnails below will take you to the page of interest)

 

Libey Prison

Libey Prison Escape

1864 Election Editorial

Florida Campaign

Schleswig

Libey Prison Escape

Libey Prison Escape

Schleswig Map

Schleswig Map

Sanitary Commission

Sanitary Commission

Brooklyn Fair

Reconnaissance

Brooklyn

Brooklyn

Napoleon

Napoleon Cartoon

 

 

 

 

 

MARCH 5, 1864.]

HARPER'S WEEKLY.

147

(Previous Page) such circumstances the very rabble of Constantinople would storm the Seraglio, implying that the American people are recreant or stupid because they do not rise against the authorities, he merely takes the ground of Vallandigham and Jeff Davis, of all wild and reckless revolutionists, and shows his exact misapprehension of the genius and training of the American people.

We can imagine a judge of the old Revolutionary tribunal of France criticising the conduct of William Third as the Count censures the President. An honest man, a friend of the people, ardent, devoted, pure, we can imagine the old revolutionist to be; but not a wise leader, nor a safe counselor, nor a sound critic. And to see so sincere a man the prey of ungovernable rage, to read his scornful gibes at trusty friends, to know how large a heart he had, how truly accomplished he was, what heroism he showed and had shown, would move neither anger nor contempt, but the profoundest pity and regret, which also the old revolutionaire would reject with a hiss of indignation.

DOMESTIC INTELLIGENCE.

CONGRESS.

SENATE—February 17. Several private measures were introduced and referred, among which was a message from the President recommending an appropriation for paying the claims of the owners of the French ship La Manche. —Mr. Brown, of Missouri, offered a joint resolution to the effect that, after the passage of the act, slavery shall not exist in the United States or Territories, any law, usage, or custom to the contrary notwithstanding, and that involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime, is prohibited: referred.—Mr. Pomeroy introduced a bill donating to the several States public lands to the amount of 30,000 acres for each Senator and Representative in Congress for the support of the children of soldiers and sailors who may die in the military or naval service; one-fourth of the lands may be applied as homesteads for such orphans as may desire them: referred.—Mr. Johnson, from the Judiciary Committee, reported adversely to the bill of Mr. Sumner explanatory of the Confiscation Act; the report urges that the explanatory resolution shall not be so construed as to create any restriction or forfeiture of real estate other than is created by the Constitution in case of an attainder of treason.—Mr. Davis concluded his speech on the bill to equalize the pay of white and colored soldiers. In the course of his remarks he said the President had assumed the enormous power to prohibit the return of the States under their Constitutions, and to require that certain conditions abhorrent to the people of these States shall be complied with before the State shall be allowed to return to the Union; and that the re-election of the present President, or the election of one of similar radical views, would confirm these enormous usurpations and abuses of power. In the course of his speech Mr. Davis made severe denunciations against several Senators, for which he was called to order. Mr. Doolittle said that the whole tenor of Mr. Davis's remarks were calculated to create personal strife, and he should either call him to order or leave his seat, as he would not listen to personal attacks which were out of order and beneath the dignity of the Senate. Mr. Johnson, of Maryland, agreed that much that had been said by Mr. Davis was productive of nothing but mischief.—Mr. Sumner offered amendments to the Constitution as a substitute to those reported on the 10th by Mr. Trumbull from the Judiciary Committee. The first of these proposed amendments is, with slight verbal changes, the same as that proposed by the Judiciary Committee, prohibiting slavery and involuntary servitude except as a punishment for crime, and empowering Congress to make all necessary laws to enforce this prohibition. The second proposed amendment strikes out the "three-fifth" provision in respect to taxation and representation, leaving the clause (Article I. § 2, P 3) as follows, "Representation and direct taxes shall be apportioned among the several States of the Union according to their numbers, excepting Indians not taxed." The third proposed amendment strikes out P 3, § 2 of the 4th Article, which provides for the return of persons held to service or labor, escaping from one State into another. The propositions now before Congress for the abolition of slavery resolve themselves into three classes: the first proposes to accomplish this by amendments to the Constitution; the second by the direct action of Congress; the third by the action of the several States.—February 18. Mr. Sherman, from the Agricultural Committee, submitted a bill to encourage emigration. It appoints a Commissioner of Emigration who shall collect information as to soil, productions, wages, etc., which he shall disseminate in Europe; there are to be offices in New York and New Orleans.—A joint resolution was adopted to facilitate the transfer of sailors from the army to the navy. As sailors receive prize-money no bounties are to be paid them, except that they will receive an advance of three months' pay, to be refunded from prize-money.—February 19. Mr. Foster introduced a bill to provide for the renting of abandoned lands and dwellings in the insurrectionary States, and for the care and employment of persons set free by the proclamation of the President. It places the matter in the hands of the Secretary of the Treasury, and authorizes him to pay the necessary expenses from the profits of the labor of the slaves and from the sale of confiscated property: referred.—The report of the Committee of Conference on the Enrollment bill was called up. After a long discussion it was accepted by 26 to 16. Several Republican Senators who voted against it assigned their reasons. Mr. Lane, of Indiana, should vote against it on account of the commutation clause. Mr. Wilkinson was opposed to it, as he did not agree with the action of the House in the clause for securing substitutes. He believed that slaves were worth as much to the army as minor whites. He would never consent to make any difference between the able-bodied men of the country. Mr. Howe was opposed to the bill on account of the substitute clause which says in effect that while substitutes can not be procured for $300, yet the payment of that sum purchased exemption. The bill as it now stands authorizes the Secretary of War to use colored men in one State as substitutes for white men in other States. Several other Senators accepted the bill as the best that could now be passed in both Houses, although they did not wholly approve of it. Senators Davis and Powell of Kentucky, and Saulsbury of Maryland, spoke against the bill. Mr. Davis denied its constitutionality, and said that a vital objection to it was that it authorized the raising of negro troops, and also gave them their freedom. Mr. Powell said that the only proper way was for the Government to indicate the number of men wanted, leaving it to the States to furnish them by draft. As it is, the militia force is absorbed by this great consolidation of despotic power. The part of the bill providing for the enlistment of colored men robbed the slave-holders of their constitutional property; if it was intended to strike down slavery in the loyal States, he wished to see it done in an open and candid manner. Mr. Saulsbury's special objection to the bill was that it brought colored persons and negroes into the army. These people would not be slow to join in the cry for freedom and equality. Already negroes were to be seen in the galleries of the Senate. Mr. Howe rejoined that he would not vote for a black man while he could find a better white man; but when the people of Wisconsin should find a man more worthy than himself to fill his seat, he should insist upon their right to send him, even though his skin should be darker. At all events, he should have preferred a man with more loyalty than Mr. Saulsbury's late colleague (Mr. Bayard), even though his color were a little darker. Mr. Saulsbury rejoined that he intended to make no defense of his late colleague, who had purged himself from disloyalty by taking the oath, and had then resigned; but if the term loyalty meant loyalty to the negro, then he was disloyal. After some personal discussion the Senate adjourned to Tuesday, February 23.—February 23. Mr. Foot was chosen President of the Senate pro tem., Mr. Hamlin being about to be absent for a time.—Petitions for the abolition of slavery, and for equal pay

to colored troops, were presented and referred. A petition was presented from a Mr. Stockton, of Alabama, asking Congress, at the close of the war, to establish a standing army of 200,000 colored men, the officers to be white.—Mr. Carlile offered resolutions to the effect that the war should be carried on only against individuals in hostility, that its sole purpose was the restoration of the Union, leaving to each State the regulation of its own domestic policy; and that the President be requested to declare by proclamation that when the people of any State reorganize their State Government, repudiate the acts of secession, and acknowledge their obligations to the Union, there shall be a full act of amnesty to all persons, excepting such as the State Legislatures may designate to be held for trial before the courts of the United States: referred.—The Committee on Military Affairs was directed to inquire into the expediency of increasing the number of cadets in the Military Academy to 400, raising the standard of qualifications, fixing the minimum age at 17, and changing the mode of appointment, so that admission shall be based upon the merits of the candidates, as shown by examination.—Mr. Wilson's amendment to the bill equalizing the pay of soldiers, modified so as to leave it optional with the President to allow bounties to colored soldiers previous to the passage of the act, was reported.—Mr. Davis's proposition to disarm colored troops, and employ them only as teamsters and laborers, was rejected by 30 to 7.—The Senate agreed to the report of the Committee of Conference on the Whisky tax (the House, however, disagreed).—The Enlistment bill was brought up, briefly debated, and an amendment offered by Mr. Collamer, that all persons enlisted under the call of 1863 for 300,000 men shall receive equal pay and bounty: postponed.

HOUSE.—February 17. Mr. Allison introduced a bill granting lands to certain railroads; the object being to secure the immediate completion of the railroad through Iowa, to Omaha, connecting with the Pacific Railroad: referred.—Mr. Hooper, from the Committee of Ways and Means, asked leave to introduce a resolution authorizing the Secretary of the Treasury to sell any surplus of gold in the Treasury, beyond the amount which he may judge necessary to pay the interest on the public debt and other purposes. Mr. Kasson, in explanation, said that the demands of the Government for payments in gold and silver had brought into the Treasury so large a portion of the gold in the country that merchants were embarrassed in procuring specie to discharge their liabilities. This had caused a rise in the price, and the same cause would increase the price still further unless the Secretary of the Treasury were authorized to relieve the state of things. The sum locked up in the Treasury is now $8,000,000 or $10,000,000 beyond the wants of Government. By putting this, or as much as might be required into the market, the price of gold would be reduced to its legitimate rate. —Resolutions offered by Mr. Farnsworth were unanimously passed thanking the soldiers who had voluntarily re-enlisted, and directing that the resolutions should be read at the head of all re-enlisting veteran regiments.—The Senate amendments to the Revenue bill were taken up; a portion of these were agreed to, and a portion disagreed with; and a Committee of Conference was requested.—Mr. Cox made a speech in opposition to the proposed bill establishing a Bureau of Freedman's Affairs. He said he would not favor so novel, sweeping, and revolutionary a scheme as establishing an eleemosynary system for the blacks, making the Federal Government a plantation speculator and overseer. Millions of slaves, unfit for freedom, were to be freed; New England, which was fattening upon Western toil, should do its part in saving the slaves so improvidently freed. If slavery was doomed, the conflict would be between black and white. No system like the one proposed by this bill could save the slave, he would be crushed out as the war went on. The Northern Democracy was not responsible for this inevitable extirpation of the slave; this responsibility rested upon their opponents; in striking at slavery they had struck down that liberty of which the Northern Democracy are champions; and for this they must answer next fall. There would be no more cry of pro-slavery Democracy; the issue would be between the old order with the Democracy to administer it, or continued revolution with despotism to guide it—the old Union, with as much local sovereignty and personal freedom as can be saved, or a new abolition military unity of territory, with trinity of debt, tyranny, and fanaticism. Mr. Washburne in reply, after alluding to the recent elections in Ohio, which indicated that Mr. Cox would have no opportunity in the next Congress of again rehearsing his speech, proceeded to read extracts from a book of travels, "The Buckeye Abroad," published some years ago by Mr. Cox, in the course of which he describes his listening while at Rome to a plain African from Abyssinia, delivering a sermon in Latin in the most eloquent manner. The head of the Catholic Church, said Mr. Washburne, surrounded by the ripe scholars of the age from all parts of the world, was listening, not to the distinguished gentleman from Ohio, but to the eloquence of the despised negro; thus, in the language of Mr. Cox himself, "illustrating to the world the common bond of brotherhood that binds the human race."—The resolution of thanks to General Thomas and the men under his command at the battle of Chicamauga, was taken up. Mr. Garfield moved that the name of General Rosecrans be included. He made an elaborate vindication, or rather eulogy, of General Rosecrans's conduct during the whole war, and at Chicamauga in particular. Rosecrans had won the battles in Western Virginia early in the war, though another had carried off the honors. At Chicamauga he had but 42,000 opposed to the 75,000 of the enemy, and in the afternoon only 25,000 of our men met that mighty army, and at the final charge drove them back. The battle of Chicamauga was in effect a victory; if there had been during the war a greater success against such odds he had not heard of it. He was ready to honor General Thomas, but not to burden him with thanks at the expense of his superior officer. Thomas would desire no such thing. He had said, just after the battle of Chicamauga, "By all means prevent the removal of Rosecrans from the command of this army."—February 18. A bill was passed authorizing the purchase of Rock Island, Illinois, for an arsenal, as before provided for by law. The bill authorizing the sale of gold in the Treasury was debated. Estimates varying somewhat from those before made were presented. Mr. Hooper said that there was now $18,900,000 on hand, of which $18,200,000 was in the Sub-Treasury at New York; by the 1st of July there would be from $16,000,000 to $18,000,000 more, making $37,000,000 in all. There was less than $24,000,000 to be paid at that time, leaving an excess of $11,000,000 or $13,000,000 to be disposed of. Mr. Garfield, estimating the probable receipts from customs thought there would be on the 1st of July $50,500,000 in gold in the Treasury, an excess of $27,000,000 over the sum to be paid out. The bill was advocated on the general ground that the sale of this gold would diminish its price, and thus lower that of the necessaries of life, and facilitate mercantile transactions. It was opposed by Mr. Pendleton, on the ground that it would be giving dangerous power to the Secretary of the Treasury. He had now power to buy gold; this power to sell also at pleasure, thus enabling him to raise or depress the market; besides there was to be paid out within four months more gold than was now in the Treasury. The transaction was one in which no man would engage in his own private affairs. Mr. Brooks said the curse of the country was the excessive importation of luxuries; the greatest possible blessing would be to have gold rise as high as to stop such importations. The public faith was pledged to devote our gold to the payment of the interest of the public debt. If there is a surplus in the Treasury let the Secretary anticipate the payment of this interest. Mr. Fernando Wood condemned the financial policy of the Administration. Neither an individual nor is government could long sustain itself by borrowing; three years more of the war—and we might have ten—would end not only in the collapse of the Treasury but in the prostration of the national interests of the people. Amendments were proposed providing that the operation of the act should cease at the end of a year; that the Secretary of the Treasury should not sell gold without the advice and consent of the other Executive departments; that at least five days' notice should be given of any sale; and that he may withdraw any sum offered at any time before a bid was accepted. The bill was referred to the Committee on Ways and Means.—A joint resolution, offered by Mr. Odell, was passed for the payment of the bounty of $25 to all the remaining nine months' militia, to a great portion of whom it had been paid. The Freedman's Bureau bill was further discussed, Mr. Cole of California advocating it, and the employment of colored soldiers for

strengthening the national arm to crush the rebellion.—February 19. Mr. Blow introduced a bill providing for the occupation of abandoned plantations in the rebellious States, and taking care of the freedmen: referred.—The joint resolution from the Senate providing for the transfer of seamen from the military to the naval service, was passed.—Ten thousand additional copies of General McClellan's report were ordered to be printed.—The bill for a Freedman's Bureau was further discussed. Mr. Kalbfleisch opposed it. He said that it would lead to a servitude worse than the evils which it seeks to destroy; it attempted an impossibility—the bringing up of negroes to participate in the rights enjoyed by white citizens, and attempting to raise them to an equality with these. Mr. Brooks, of New York, said that the subject had been caucussed and decided upon elsewhere, and no argument of his against the bill would avail; Massachusetts had become the leading power in the country, and her decrees would be likely to become law. The "higher law," which was not that of Magna Charta and of the Constitution, had been adopted by Massachusetts. Henceforth he would as far as possible withdraw the discussion of the Abolition question from the exciting questions of the day, and turn to other matters. His main anxiety was for the liberty of the white man. We must accept the abolition of slavery as an act accomplished, not only by the North but by the South. The Confederate Government had provided for putting arms into the hands not only of free blacks but of slaves; arming them was of necessity liberating them. The dominant party at the North will have armed the negroes. They were consistent in this, for they had changed the war into an Abolition war, and therefore the blacks should be called out. He implored them to make the war as short as possible. If it was not to be waged for the Union, let it be for the restoration of peace. Let it not be, for political purposes, protracted beyond the Presidential election. He would offer an amendment that this Freedman's bill be referred to a select committee with instructions to organize a system for the care and regulation of emancipated persons which would not be a burden upon the Treasury. The Speaker said that this amendment would be entertained at the proper time.—Mr. Stevens, from the Committee on Ways and Means, reported adversely upon the resolution authorizing the sale of surplus gold in the Treasury.—The House having gone into Committee of the Whole on the State of the Union, Mr. White, of Ohio, made a speech against the war, declaring it to be wrong, and that it should be terminated as soon as possible. It had not been conducted for the Union and the Constitution, but solely for the abolition of slavery, and had been driven to fanaticism and revolution. Peace could never be restored by fighting and crushing the rebellion. It could not be done until the heart of the Puritan was placed in the breast of the Cavalier. A forced Union would be worse than that of Ireland with England, or Poland with Russia. The war was therefore a useless and criminal waste of blood and treasure.—Mr. Schenck, from the Committee of Conference on the Enrollment bill, made a report. After explaining it, as agreed upon by the Committee, he moved the previous question, which was seconded by 69 to 27, and the bill as agreed upon was passed, by 71 to 23; a large portion of the Democratic members not voting. The bill, having passed both Houses, and received the sanction of the President, has become a law. This law is essentially the same as the bill passed in the House, of which a full abstract was given in this paper last week, with the addition of a provision that colored troops "while they shall be credited in the quotas of the several States or subdivisions of States wherein they are respectively drafted, enlisted, or shall volunteer, shall not be assigned as State troops, but shall be mustered into regiments or companies as 'United States Colored Volunteers.' "—The House then adjourned to Tuesday, February 23.—February 23. Mr. Stevens brought up the report of the Committee of Conference on the Whisky Tax bill, and moved its acceptance. After considerable debate, the House refused to concur, by 86 to 57, and asked for a new Committee of Conference.—In Committee of the Whole, Mr. Blow concluded his speech in defense of the Administration. He said, that if the rebellion was to be crushed, it would be effected by the Abolition party, and the black race would be protected in their freedom. He prayed that we might have courage and ability to act so justly that the God of nations would not abandon us.—Mr. M'Dowell, of Indiana, charged the President and the Republican party with being fanatical hypocrites, and denounced the leading measures of the Administration. And now, he said, the dominant party had borrowed from Europe a conscription law to compel the people to carry on an Abolition war. He had no sympathy with the rebellion; but we must accompany the sword with the olive-branch, and build up a Union sentiment to protect the South when our armies have left it.

THE MILITARY SITUATION.

No movements have been made this week of any importance except those of Gillmore in Florida and Sherman in Mississippi. The news of the escape of a large number of Union officers from the Libey prison at Richmond has been confirmed, and we give this week a detailed account of the escape, accompanied by an illustration.

General Meade has gone to the front and will probably conduct the next campaign, supported by the ablest subordinate officers of the army.

The situation in East Tennessee remains about the same. Longstreet has for a few days been at Morristown, on the Virginia and Tennessee Railroad, and speculations have been rife in regard to his future movements, his position leaving it in doubt whether he has committed himself to an offensive or defensive plan of operations. According to the latest reports he has broken up his quarters at Morristown and advanced to Strawberry Plains along the Holston River, still moving on the line of the Virginia Railroad. It appears that no direct attack is feared at Knoxville, as the Holston is as swollen by late freshets as to make the crossing impracticable. Johnston's army, so much of it as has not gone to reinforce Longstreet, Is still in the vicinity of Dalton.

On the 18th of February the President issued a proclamation declaring that the blockade of Brownsville, on the Rio Grande, Texas, should so far cease that commercial intercourse with that port may be carried on subject to the usual restrictions in regard to contraband of war.

NEWS FROM THE SOUTHWEST.

Immediately after the occupation of Jackson Sherman pushed on in two columns against Meridan, on the Mobile and Ohio Railroad. This movement cut off Mobile from all railroad communication with the East. Advancing along the line of the railroad, he had reached Quitman, according to rebel papers, on the 19th, and was within one hundred miles of Mobile. In his advance he was tearing up the railroad and bridges in his rear. It may be that this was only an advance force of Sherman's expedition. According to the rebel journals this is the boldest movement of the war. The Union cavalry from Memphis, under Smith, confronted Forrest's force on the 9th of February, 6000 strong. In the mean time Farragut's fleet has passed eastward through the Sound in the direction of Grant's Pass.

On February 7 General Dick Taylor attacked our forces at Natchez, and was repulsed with considerable loss.

THE CAMPAIGN IN FLORIDA.

On the 9th of February Jacksonville had been taken by our forces, the advance force pushing forward beyond that place into the interior. in his official dispatch, dated at Baldwin, General Gillmore says:

"At our approach the enemy absconded, sunk the steamer St. Marys, and burned two hundred and seventy bales of cotton a few miles above Jacksonville.

"We have taken, without the loss of a man, about one hundred prisoners, eight pieces of artillery, in serviceable condition and well supplied with ammunition, and other valuable property to a large amount."

Since then our cavalry have penetrated to the heart of the enemy's country and engaged the rebels on the south Fork of the St. Mary's River and at Lake City with successful results. Over one and a half million dollars' worth of property has been destroyed by our forces. The evacuation of Lake City by the rebels is a virtual abandonment of the eastern portion of Florida. An important document was found by our forces, indicating that beef and bacon were entirely exhausted in the South. General Gillmore returned to Port Royal on the 16th.

LOSS OF THE "BOHEMIAN."

The steamship Bohemian, running from Liverpool to Portland, struck on Alden's Rock, four miles out from Cape Elisabeth, on the evening of the 22d. She sunk in an hour and a half, with all her mails except three, and a cargo estimated at a million of dollars. The Bohemian was a propeller of 2200 tons burden. She had on board 218 passengers, of which 18, mostly steerage passengers, are reported lost. This is the eighth steamship lost by the Montreal Steamship Company since 1857, and the twenty-fourth which has been lost at sea since the commencement of communication with Europe by steam.

FOREIGN NEWS.

EUROPE.

HOSTILITIES between the German and Danish troops were commenced on the 2d of February. Two days previously Marshal Wrangle summoned General de Meza to evacuate Schleswig. General de Meza refused, and the next day (the 1st) the Austro-Prussian army crossed the Eider, entering Schleswig through Rendsburg, having first taken the Kronenwerke, which was evacuated by the Danes. Marshal Wrangle issued a proclamation to the people of Schleswig, stating that he had come to protect their rights, and that the civil Commissioners of Austria and Prussia would assume the administration of the duchies of Schleswig and Holstein. The Prussian corps marched in a northeasterly direction toward Eckernford, whereupon the first division of the Danish army took up a position on the Schlei, occupying the fortifications near Missunde. It was here that the first battle of the war took place on the 2d of February. The Prussians, having turned the eastern rampart of the Dannewerke, were led by Prince Frederick Charles against the strong works in front of Missunde, with which town they are connected by a tete du pont. A severe engagement followed, in which the assailants, 9000 strong, were twice repulsed by a force of about 2000 Danes. Seventy-four guns were used in the attack, which commenced at 10 A.M., and lasted until 4 P.M. The Danish loss was between 150 and 200, that of the Prussians from 250 to 300 men. Meanwhile the Austrians marched toward the town of Schleswig, on the west side of the Schlei, and on the 3d attacked Bustrup, which is situated a mile south of Schleswig, and just in front of the Dannewerke. The latest dispatches from London up to the time of our going to press do not indicate what was the result of this engagement, although they report as authentic information the evacuation of Schleswig and the abandonment of the Dannewerke by the Danes and their retreat upon Flensburg, closely pursued by the Germans. Fighting was still going on, and the wounded on the German side, together with Danish prisoners, were being brought in great numbers into Rendsburg on the Eider.

What the attitude of the other Great Powers will be in relation to this war is yet to be determined. The British Parliament opened on the 4th, two days after the actual commencement of hostilities, yet the Queen's speech expressed simply anxiety and a strong desire for peace; it declared that peace was one of the objects aimed at in the treaty of 1852; that Her Majesty has been unremitting in her endeavors to avert the dangers which might follow from a war in the north of Europe; and that she will continue her efforts in the interest of peace.

ARMY AND NAVY ITEMS.

SINCE the commencement of the war over eight thousand applications for pensions have been made. Of these nearly half have been from widows and orphans, and the rest from disabled soldiers.

A traveling office wagon for the Adjutant-General's Department of the Cumberland has just been completed at the Government shops in Washington. It is a new invention, and accommodates seven clerks and a driver, is drawn by four horses, and can be taken apart and put together in five minutes. A similar one will be shortly completed for General Pleasanton, Army of the Potomac.

Brigadier-General R. B. MITCHELL has been relieved from duty as President of General Court-Martial, and ordered West.

Captain WILSON, the Chief Quarter-master of the Army of the Potomac, has been promoted to a Lieutenant-Colonelcy in the regular army.

The Secretary of War has directed that no volunteer shall be rejected on account of height, who is at least five feet.

The steamer Alabama, on the 5th of January, was fifty miles south of Rangoon, on the Aracan coast, watching the rice ports. Her position was also threatening to American vessels at Calcutta.

General MEADE recently had a conference with the President relative to reorganizing the Army of the Potomac.

Over 12,000 negroes have already enlisted in Tennessee. Enlistments in the middle district average 500 per week.

It said that an army of seventy-five thousand negroes will be ready for the spring campaign in the southwest.

Ten million of dollars, in one and two year five per cent. legal tenders, have been sent to pay the Army of the Cumberland.

Major-General Q. A. GILMORE and staff sailed from Port Royal on Sunday morning, 7th inst, in the transport Cosmopolitan to Florida, and returned on the 16th.

Colonel ANDREW of the Third Minnesota Regiment, at Little Rock, has been appointed a Brigadier-General. His regiment has re-enlisted.

Admiral DAHLGREN has changed his flag-ship from the Philadelphia to the Pawnee, and sailed for St. Johns, Florida. Three vessels of war have sailed for Jacksonville, viz.: flag-ship Pawnee, Water Witch, and Wachsuett.

It is approximated that two thousand refugees and deserters have come within the lines of General KELLEY'S Department since the 18th of January, 1864.

The gun-boat De Soto has thus far proved herself the most successful of all the vessels on the Atlantic blockade. She has captured seventeen blockade runners, wbose aggregate value is near $1,200,000.

General SCAMMON and staff have arrived in Richmond, and are confined in Libey prison.

Our forces around Newbern, North Carolina, are making successful raids in that country, capturing guerrillas, tobacco, horses, mules, cotton, and other materials belonging to the rebels.

The Newbern (North Carolina) Times announces that several thousand Union prisoners were sent from Richmond to Georgia a few days since.

General BURNSIDE arrived at Portland, Maine, a few days since, and was escorted thorough the city by a battalion of troops from Camp Berry.

When "Scott's 900," now under marching orders, leave Washington, no troops will remain in the Capitol but the Invalid Corps, who are doing almost all the messenger and detail duty.

The privateer Tuscaloosa has been seized at Simon's Bay, near Cape Town, by British authorities, in violation of the neutrality laws, in landing part of a captured cargo on the coast, and on the grounds that she is a United States vessel illegally seized by the pirate SEMMES.

It is reported that Brigadier-General CROKER, of Iowa, died at Jackson, Mississippi, from wounds received in a skirmish with the rebels in the advance of General SHERMAN'S army.

The paymasters will shortly leave en masse for the Army of the Potomac. Eight millions of dollars have been appropriated to pay the troops of this Department.

Major MALONE, Paymaster in the United States Army, was robbed, in Washington, recently of $10,000, which he had drawn from the Treasury for the purpose of carrying to the front, in order to pay certain regiments there.

General ROSECRANS is busy systematizing the military organization of Missouri, and is about to make a complete tour of the State for that purpose.


 

 

  

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