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Robert E. Lee Portrait
Page) turned. But they knew it no more distinctly. The very papers
which now shout at the " extravagant insolence" of the Yankees in proposing
union under the Constitution and laws of Congress, are the same papers which
have always derided and affected to despise the Yankees as brutes and cowards.
Crying more fiercely will not convince more readily. There is no new form of
invective against the Union which the rebel leaders can use. The old styles have
become stale. And what malignant falsehood and frantic calumny could not do in
the first four years of the war, they are not likely to effect when the spirit
of the rebellion is broken by the terrible tenacity and increasing skill of the
JUDAH P. BENJAMIN.
IN his speech at the Richmond
meeting to fire the rebel heart Mr. JUDAH P. BENJAMIN, of Louisiana, the rebel
Secretary of State, strongly urged the policy of
arming the slaves. When our soldiers in the
trenches, said he, are crying out for help, shall we care whether the aid we
send is black or white ? " There are in the South," he said, " six hundred and
eighty thousand black men of fighting age, and capable of being made fighting
men. Let us say to every negro who wants to go into the ranks, Go and fight, and
you are free. Don't press them, for that will make them run away, and they will
be found fighting against us instead of for us." Without the adoption of some
decisive, energetic, full way measure like this there was danger, very great
BENJAMIN is DAVIS'S confidential
man. These are DAVIS'S views. And the rebel Senate has almost unanimously
refused to adopt this decisive and full way measure. The chivalry find the
alternative too bitter. To be saved by our slaves ! To erect our Confederacy, of
which Mr. STEPHENS declared that slavery was the chief corner stone, upon
abolition ! To owe our independence, which was to be so readily achieved by
every Southern gentleman shooting a few dozen Yankee vermin, to " niXXers !" No,
Mr. BENJAMIN. It was not to this feast that the chivalry were invited to sit
down, and they quite unanimously decline the invitation.
Let JUDAH BENJAMIN look at it.
You have always insisted that negroes were meant for slavery, It was resisting
the divine order to oppose it. It was flying in the face of Providence. It was
blasphemous. The negroes are good for nothing else. They are an inferior race.
They require guardianship. They must be forced to work. They are lazy, idle
vagabonds. Capital ought to own labor and the laborer. The true order of society
is that which rests upon a servile class. The negro is really thankful for
slavery. Have we not all of us an old black mammy?
This is what you and the other
false Americans who lead this rebellion have always been instilling into the
Southern mind. The incessant reiteration of this frantic nonsense to a
population kept purposely ignorant and degraded has begotten in their minds a
firm conviction that it is truth. All your efforts, and those of your whole
political school, have been directed for a generation to proving that slavery,
and slavery alone, was the only safe condition for the negroes, even while you
were at profound peace, and had the power of the United States Government to
Who is it, then, you hope to
fool? Is it the whites you have so treacherously deluded or the blacks you have
so infamously wronged ? Are the whites to reject in a moment all they have been
sedulously taught and unlearn in a day the conviction of a life? Or are the
blacks to forget at, your bidding all they have suffered at your hands? Do you
think that a class which is able to be stimulated by the hope of freedom into
fighting for you has not been able to comprehend the war ? Do you think these
slaves have not watched, and waited, and scored indelibly upon their souls what
they could not speak and could not but think and feel ? Do you sincerely suppose
they will trust your word, a life long oppressor of their race avenging upon
them the medieval torture of your own kind, when they know that your promise of
freedom is extorted only by the direst fear? Do you imagine they think you would
hesitate to order them to the paddle and the post, and their children to the
auction block, the moment you felt sure of the safety of your own neck ?
Or is it the whites who are to
believe that all your teaching which seduced them into rebellion was false ? If
the negro is only fit for slavery, why promise him freedom ? If God meant him
for it, if it is his own wish, if he be happy in it, why disturb him, why not
promise him that God's order and his own choice shall be respected? If, as
STEPHENS said, you went out of the old Union to form a new one upon slavery,
what do you mean by abolition ? These are questions that will be asked, that ask
themselves, and which you can not answer.
JUDAH BENJAMIN knows that the
slaves understand this contest as well as he. JUDAH BENJAMIN knows that two
hundred thousand armed slaves would be presently masters of " the Confederacy."
Every rebel thinks of it and shudders. It is the most terrible alternative he
could present. His promise of freedom as a boon
shows that he is conscious that
slavery is a wrong. And it has always been so since he has defended it. And he
knew it before, as he knows it now. But if a wrong, are the slaves alone
unconscious of it ? And when they are summoned to arms upon BENJAMIN'S plain
confession that he and his class without their aid are helpless to avert the
fate which gives the negro freedom, is the negro likely to be ignorant of his
They are not a vindictive class.
They are patient, mild, and long broken by bondage. But they have been carefully
kept dulled and degraded, and the probabilities of the case are to be judged by
prejudiced and ignorant, not by intelligent minds. It is too late, JUDAH
BENJAMIN ! There was a moment in the war when you might have tried it. But as a
resource of despair it is hopeless. Your little speed is one of the most
significant in our history. It concedes the inconceivable iniquity of your
rebellion. It slaps in the face all the boasted " statesman ship" of your
section for half a century.
MANNERS IN NEWSPAPERS.
MR. RICE, of Massachusetts,
lately called attention in the House to an article in a newspaper aspersing his
honesty as a legislator, and retorted by causing an article from another paper
to be read, which contained an implied aspersion upon the honesty of the first.
THADDEUS STEVENS proposed to forbid the first paper to have any
reporter in the House, but withdrew the suggestion at the request of Mr. RICE,
saying, however, that if members ventured to differ from the dogmas of the
newspapers of New York they were attacked in a foul manner by the newspaper
There is, indeed, and there ought
to be, a comprehensive discussion of all public questions, and a strict
criticism of all public men in the great newspapers. We do not understand Mr.
STEVENS to object to this. But we do understand him to complain of that personal
malevolence and critical asperity which too often characterize our newspaper
discussions and correspondence. This disposition has run riot since the war
began. It has, indeed, gone so far that the press of this country has seriously
damaged its character both for veracity and intelligence. From the beginning of
the war, when one leading journal, friendly to the Administration, plainly
insinuated that the Secretary of State was a traitor, down to the time when
another of the same class sneered at Mr. STEVENS as a superannuated old woman,
there seems to have been a total want of that generosity and candor which are
entirely compatible with the utmost rigor of criticism. Surely there is
something between rose water and bilge water, in which the editorial pen may be
dipped. There are various methods of self defense. Tigers have theirs : birds
theirs: polecats theirs, and honest men theirs. Vituperation is not force, and
abuse is the most ineffective argument.
The foolish personality which
calls a journal by the name of its editor springs from this same want of
editorial comity, which gains nothing for any paper, and loses something for
all. The truth is, that most of the great papers are not the mere organs of
individuals. They are an aggregate of individualities, a combination of powers ;
all agreeing naturally in general tendency, but as individually different as the
voices in a chorus.
Honest wrath, caustic satire,
incisive argument, stern denunciation, all these are weapons that every editor
and every debater may honorably employ. But there are such things as scurrility
and calumny, and of these no public journal which aims at any thing higher than
the applause of mean and ignorant men would be guilty more than a private
gentleman would be. The power of the press is that of a giant, and it should
therefore be most carefully used. To pillory a private or public person by name
before the country, to accuse him of dishonesty, and to blow upon his character,
is so tremendous a responsibility that it should be assumed only upon the surest
knowledge. To do it hastily, vindictively, or wantonly is to wound fatally the
power and fame of the newspaper. The press and the public are equally interested
in punishing such an offense with rigor.
EXCHANGE OF PRISONERS.
LIEUTENANT-GENERAL GRANT Stated
to the Committee on the Conduct of the War that he alone is charged with the
exchange of prisoners, and that he has effected an arrangement for exchange man
by man, by which he hopes to receive three thousand of our men every week. He
added that there was no impediment upon our side ; and that if the rebels would
deliver all they hold, the entire exchange could be made in a very short time.
So far as it goes this is
excellent news. The thought of releasing our soldiers from the living death of
the rebel military prisons is one that will cheer the whole country. We hope
that the terms of the cartel may soon be made public, for every loyal man will
wish to know whether the rebels have receded from their determination respecting
our colored soldiers, or if not, what terms have been made for them. We have no
fear that General GRANT will leave
them in the lurch, or permit the
rebels to force upon the Government any discrimination between its soldiers. The
rights which the United States flag protects are not to be dictated by those who
seek to dishonor that flag.
DR. JOHN W. DRAPER, the author of
the " History of the Intellectual Development of Europe," is delivering a course
of lectures before the New York Historical Society. The title of the course is "
The Historical Influence of Natural Causes." The first lecture, on February 9,
was upon the " Influence of Climate;" the second, on the 16th of February, upon
the " Effects of Emigration." Two remain : one, on the 23d of February, upon the
" Political Force of Ideas ;" and one, on the 2d of March, upon the "Natural
Course of National Development."
Dr. DRAPER'S remarkable
scholarship and long devotion to the study of this great subject make his
lectures an opportunity which no thoughtful man should lose. Since the
discourses of AGASSIZ there have been none in the city so valuable and
GENERAL GRANT'S movement to the
left, resulting in the occupation of the line of rebel works on Hatcher's Run,
General Sherman's advance on Branchville, are the great items of our
military record for the past week. Richmond papers of the 13th announce that
Sherman has crossed the Edisto River. The importance of this move may be
inferred from the following paragraph in the Richmond Dispatch of the 11th:
" From the most recent authentic
intelligence, it appears that while a part of Sherman's army is making active
demonstrations against the Combahee River, near the Charleston and Savannah
Railroad, as if with the design of marching on Charleston, the rest of his
forces have appeared at four mints on the Edisto, viz. at New Bridge, five miles
below Branchville ; at Bumacker's and Helman's bridges, above, and at the
railroad bridge opposite that place. Our troops that held the bridge over the
Salkehatchie, west of Branchville, were driven in on last Wednesday. If he
succeed in forcing a passage of the Edisto, above and below Branchville, he will
tap the railroad to Charleston, and compel our troops to fall back from
Branchville. But they will most probably evacuate it, if at any time it shall
appear that Sherman can not be prevented from crossing the river."
There is no political news of any
importance. The paucity of news from abroad leads us to omit our Foreign record
this week. The St. Albans trial is still proceeding at Montreal.
In the Senate, a Postal bill was
passed. The first section provides that letters unpaid, or lacking more than a
single rate of payment, shall be returned to the writers, with notification. At
one o'clock the Senate went in a body to the House to proceed with the counting
of the Presidential vote.
In the House, a resolution was
adopted requesting information from the President relative to the recent Peace
Commission. A joint resolution appropriating $1000 to procure a marble bust of
the late Chief Justice Taney passed the House. The Senate, having arrived at
one, the Presidential vote was counted. The whole number of electoral votes was
Abraham Lincoln for President, and Andrew Johnson for Vice-President,
George B. McClellan and George H. Pendleton, 21.
In the Senate, a bill was passed
to take one degree of latitude from the Territory of Utah and add the same to
the State of Nevada. A bill was passed to build a bridge across the Ohio at
Cincinnati. A bill was passed to reimburse Missouri for expenses incurred in
calling out the militia.
In the House, the report of the
Committee of Conference on the bill to establish a bureau for freedmen was
In the Senate, the President's
communication to the House on the Peace Conference was read and ordered to be
In the House, the amendment to
the Internal Revenue bill taxing spirits on hand was defeated by a large
majority. The President's communication on the Peace Conference was read.
In the Senate, Lieutenant-General
Grant made his appearance and received the courtesies of members. The
Appropriation bill was passed with amendments, increasing the salaries of the
Assistant Secretaries of Departments to $3500 per year, and appropriating
$60,000 for the extension of the Congressional Library.
In the House, Mr. Rice read an
article in the Evening Post, charging him with interested motives in voting
against the repeal of the paper duty. General Grant appeared on the floor, and
the members paid their respects. February 13:
In the Senate, a bill to
establish a steamship line between the United States and China was passed. The
House resolution reducing the paper duty was passed, with an amendment limiting
the reduction to 15 per cent. instead of 3 per cent.
In the House, a resolution was
adopted appropriating $25,000 for a naval picture by Mr. Powell. The House then
took up the Amendatory Revenue bill. Amendments were agreed to exempting Bibles
and Testaments, or volumes containing only parts of either, and prayer books,
from any duty or tax. School books, and all books printed exclusively for Sunday
schools, were also exempted from duty or tax.
In the Senate, a resolution was
adopted calling upon the President for a report of the Court of Inquiry on the
subject of the explosion of the Petersburg mine.
In the House, the Senate bill,
giving lands to Wisconsin for the construction of a ship canal, was rejected by
the House. The Amendatory Internal Revenue bill was then taken up. Various
amendments were discussed, and the provisions in relation to tobacco were
amended so as to read as follows: " On smoking tobacco of all kinds, not
otherwise herein provided for, thirty-five cents a pound." The Senate bill
recognizing as post routes the bridges to be built over the Ohio at Cincinnati
and Louisville were passed.
The remains of the gallant
Lieutenant B. H. Porter, United States Navy, who was killed while leading his
men at the assault on
Fort Fisher, were interred on Tuesday the 7th, at Skeneateles, with military honors. The Syracuse Citizens' Corps (Company A),
Fifty-first Regiment, attended the funeral.
The gift of fifty-one thousand
dollars in Government bonds to Vice-Admiral Farragut
by the citizens of New York
has had a sequel in the transmission to him of the letter of presentation, inclosed in "a beautiful blue morrocco case, lined with white and red satin,
thus combining the loyal colors."
Pascagoula has been evacuated by
The United States Army Laboratory
located at Astoria was consumed by fire on the 13th instant, Loss about $50,000.
The rebel General John H. Winder
died at Florence, South Carolina, on the 6th instant. Winder was known only too
well by our prisoners.
It is said that the President's
Mr. Robert Lincoln, intends entering the Army
soon as an aid on the staff of Lieutenant-General Grant.
It is stated on good authority
that the Calcutta cyclone cost sixty thousand lives. It is known, for example,
that before the storm wave struck Saugor Island there were 8200 persons on it.
When it had passed only 1200 remained, and this is only one of the many places
swept. It is, we believe, in the opinion of geologists not impossible that the
storm wave may one day sweep the Sunderbunds, in which case the loss of life
would probably be without a parallel, except in the loss which may have been
sustained when the Runn of Cutch, then a flourishing province, dropped one night
into the sea.
Generals Curtis and Pennybacker,
both of whom were wounded at the capture of Fort Fisher, are still at Fortress
Monroe, at the Chesapeake Hospital, and at last accounts slowly recovering.
General Pennybacker's wound was a very severe one, and it will be some time
before he can recover, but he is doing well under the circumstances.
Colonel Mulford Ianded a cargo of
a thousand of our exchanged prisoners at Annapolis on the 8th. "The best
conditioned lot of our poor boys," said he, " ever delivered to me. Nearly all
could walk." He endeavored to bring away from Varina more of our sick and
wounded prisoners, but the ice on the river banks made it impossible to ship
them. The boats could not be forced up to the dock.
Hon. Thomas H. Hicks, late
Governor of Maryland, died on the morning of the 14th, at the Metropolitan Hotel
in Washington, in the 68th year of his age. He had been suffering from slight
indisposition for two weeks. On the morning of the 10th, after an unusally
refreshing sleep, he was seized with paralysis as he was about to rise. From
that time until his decease be was speechless. He was visited by the President
and numerous friends in his last hours.
Brigadier-General Grierson, the
great raider, was, on the 13th, at the request of Lieutenant-General Grant,
promoted to be Major-General by brevet.
John Y. Beall, the Lake Erie
pirate and spy, was on the 14th condemned to be hung on the 18th, by order of
HUMORS OF THE
PICKED UP NEAR HARLEM.—The oldest
lunatic on record —Time out of mind!
A DEFINITION OF HUMBUG.--A woman
was being examined as a witness, when, to a question put by the barrister,
Clarkson, she replied, "Don't think to humbug me." Upon which the Recorder said,
" Answer the question directly, woman, or I will commit you." "Ay," said
Clarkson, "and tell us what you mean by humbug?" "Why," replied the woman, "if I
was to tell you, Mr. Clarkson, that the Recorder was a gentleman, that would be
humbugging you and the court too."
THE SWEETEST THING IN BONNETS--A
FACTS NEVER TO BE LOST SIGHT
OF.—That wide awake people always keep their eyes open, and " what's more," if
you don't keep your eyes open, they'll open them for you.
WOOING IN POETRY.—An old
gentleman of the name of Page, finding a young lady's glove at a watering place,
presented it to her with the following words:
"If from your glove you take the
letter G, Your glove is love, which I devote to thee."
To which the lady returned the
following answer :
"If from your Page you take the
letter P, Your Page is age, and that won't do for me."
THE WORST WINTER FUR—Chinchilli.
A SMART LAD.—A boy from the
country was recently taken into a gentleman's family. One evening, after having
been called up into the drawing room, he came down into the kitchen laughing
immoderately. "What's the matter?" cried the cook. "Why," said he, "there are
twelve on 'em up there, who could not snuff the candle, and they had to ring for
I to do it."
A PULPIT JOKE.—At a church in
Scotland, where there was a popular call, two candidates offered to preach, of
the names of Adam and Low. The last preached in the morning, and took for his
text, "Adam, where art thou?" He made a most excellent discourse, and the
congregation were much edified. In the evening Mr. Adam preached, and took for
his text, " Lo, here am I !" The impromptu and his sermon gained him the church.
Think! "From the cradle to the
grave!" my brother, A nurse takes you from one, an ''earse to t'other.
THE POWER OF LATIN.—Andrew
Jackson was once making a stump speech out West, in a small village. Just as
he was concluding Amos Kendall, who sat behind him,
whispered, Tip 'em a little Latin, General. They won't
be content without it." Jackson instantly thought upon
a few phrases he knew, and in a voice of thunder wound
up his speech by exclaiming, "E pluribus unum—sine qua
non—ne plus ultra—multum in parvo !" The effect was
tremendous, and the shouts could be heard for many miles.
The day after to-morrow will be
fine if not otherwise, and the same may be pronounced about the two following
The whole of next week will vary
considerably, unless there be a continuous run of weather of one character.
Although at times the sun will not be visible during the next ten days, it must
be understood that he will rise and set at the usual hours, and therefore no
anxiety need be felt about him.
If it blows we shall be pretty
certain to have wind; if not, it will be more or less calm perhaps both more or
less, or even neither.
Should we have any rain it is
more than probable that we shall have wet weather. Should it snow we may look
for a thaw sooner or later.
The state of the weather for the
first half of the year will be mainly dependent on the sort of weather we have
for the next six months.
TO TIMID LOVERS.—The most
delicate method of giving a lady a key to your feelings is to send her a lock of
THE DOCTOR AND HIS PATIENTS.—A
certain eminent physician, being invited to a dinner party, arrived at the house
of his host at a somewhat earlier hour than had been named as the dinner hour.
He accordingly strolled out of the house into a church yard which was hard by.
When dinner was announced the doctor was absent, and an inquiry was made as to
where he was. "Oh," said one of the guests, who had seen him in the church yard,
" he is paying a visit to some of his old patients."
There are two points on which the
generality of Scotchmen are as daft as they are canny in all other respects.
They labor under a delusion with regard to Sunday, which they call the Sabbath,
and entertain an insane objection to instrumental church music, whence they name
an organ "a kist fu' o' whistles."
Peace makes plenty, plenty makes
pride, pride breeds quarrel, and quarrel brings war; war brings spoil, and spoil
poverty; poverty patience, and patience peace.
THE ARTIST TO ILLUSTRATE "THE
SLEEPING BEAUTY"—, Schnorr.
A NEW WAY TO PAY OLD DEBTS—Settle