Capture of Charleston


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Civil War Harper's Weekly, March 4, 1865

You are viewing an original edition of Harper's Weekly published during the Civil War. These newspapers contain fascinating pictures and reports not available anywhere else. The images were created by eye-witnesses to the events depicted, and the stories are first edition reports of the important topics covered.

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


March South Carolina

Sherman's March South Carolina

Fall of Charleston

Fall of Charleston, South Carolina

Capture of Charleston

Capture of Charleston

Savannah River

Savannah River

Map South Carolina

Map of South Carolina

Fort Anderson

Bombardment of Fort Anderson

Daniel Dickinson

Daniel Dickinson

Oil Speculation

Oil Speculation

Camp Ford

Camp Ford, Texas

Shermna's March

Sherman's March South Carolina







MARCH 4, 1865.]



(Previous Page) certain what, under certain circumstances, they wish to do and following their suggestions. The proposition of Mr. DOUGLASS is that white citizens shall not impose their whims upon black; and if any of the latter honestly wish to do as the leaders at Savannah said, it is surely no offense in General SHERMAN that he promised them what they wished.

Supreme good sense is always the doing the best thing under the circumstances. Thus the Metropolitan police in the city of New York is not theoretically according to the popular system, which allows every community to take care of its own ordinary police. But no man in his senses would wish to return to the old system. It is an exceptional departure from the general law justified by circumstances. Nor is it very difficult to find a similar solution for General SHERMAN'S order.

A man who has shown the remarkable sagacity of SHERMAN may be safely trusted to deal with new questions. It is clear that he will treat them all practically and not theoretically. His education as an old army officer, and his long residence in the South had undoubtedly made him skeptical of the heroism of the colored race, and possibly contemptuous of their capacity. But the moment he was brought in contact with them in the war, he looked at them and their condition exactly as they were. The slaves who followed his army in the march through Georgia were evidently no enemies of his, and his conference with the Savannah leader, and his subsequent action, show how utterly free he is from any self seeking or inhuman prejudice. The contrast of SHERMAN'S conduct in this matter with the dull opacity of McCLELLAN and HALLECK is as striking as that of the military genius of the three men.

The order is temporary, of course. General SHERMAN has no power, nor would he wish to assume it, of finally separating one part of our population from another. For the present he is the virtual dictator, under the Government, of the section in which he is operating. His means are brute force. War, as he says, is cruel. It is arbitrary. But fortunately it is temporary. It is a very unnecessary labor to fall upon his order and rend it as inhuman and antiquated and aiming at an impossible separation. It is a wise expedient, like many of General BUTLER'S acts in New Orleans.

Should Congress finally agree upon a Freedman's bill, the whole subject will he at once removed from the operation of any military order. And the object of such a bill will be to secure the letting alone of the emancipated slaves by considering the peculiarity of their position and saving them from the interference of white sharpers.



The military situation could not be more promising. General Sherman has accomplished his purpose in South Carolina. Charleston has fallen, and the rebel armies have fallen back on Charlotte, North Carolina. Sherman is pressing on in the same direction. Charleston was evacuated on the 18th. The same day Admiral Dahlgren took possession. General Lee assumed the command of all the rebel armies on the 9th.

Our foreign record is of peculiar interest. It is quite certain that both England and France will maintain the attitude of neutrals in relation to our civil war.


February 15:

In the Senate, Mr. Johnson, of Maryland, announced the death of Senator Hicks from that State. The customary resolutions of respect were passed. At 2 o'clock the corpse of the deceased was brought into the Chamber, and the funeral services of the Masonic Order were performed.

In the House, the customary tribute of respect was paid to Senator Hicks.

February 16:

In the Senate, the Report of General Herron as Inspector of the Department of Arkansas was presented. A bill was passed to authorize the settlement of claims of the American Colonization Society for the support of recaptured Africans in Liberia.

In the House, it was resolved that that body should meet at 11 o'clock A.M., and remain in session until 5 1/2 P.M. The Senate bill to establish steam mail communication between the United States and Canada was passed by a large majority.

February 17 :

In the Senate, Mr. Segur's credentials as Virginia Senator were presented, and the entire session was taken up in the debate on their reference to the Judiciary Committee.

In the House, the Internal Revenue bill came up, and was amended so as to levy a tax of one half of one per cent. on sales; another amendment was adopted, providing that every bullion broker shall take out a license for which he shall pay one thousand dollars.

February 18 :

In the Senate, the Army Appropriation bill was taken up and amended by striking out the proviso that no money should be paid to land-grant railroads for transportation of troops and munitions of war for the United States. The bill was then passed with an additional amendment providing for the repeal of all laws and regulations of the War Department giving additional rank or pay to regular or volunteer officers.

In the House, the Internal Revenue bill was passed, with amendments : that no peddler not enrolled shall be licensed; laying a tax of 35 cents per pound on smoking tobacco; making substitute-brokers pay $110 for a license; imposing a tax of 2 1/2 per cent. on the net instead of the gross receipts of railroad companies and similar corporations, where the net receipts are under $3000 per annum, and of 5 per cent. on the excess of this amount. The amendment to tax sales was non-concurred in. An amendment was concurred in taxing National and State banking associations 10 per cent. on the amount of notes of any State bank or association paid out by them on and after January 1, 1865.

February 20 :

In the Senate, the vote on the Army Appropriation bill was reconsidered, and the amendment equalizing the rank and pay of volunteer and regular officers was rejected.

In the House, the Conference report on the bill, amendatory of the act defining the pay and emoluments of army officers, was disagreed to, and another committee asked of the Senate. The Secretary of War sent a communication declining to furnish a copy of General Morgan's report relative to the evacuation of Cumberland Gap. The House

then proceeded to the consideration of the bill providing a Government for the States subverted or overthrown by the rebellion. In the midst of the debate on this bill, General Grant's dispatch, announcing the evacuation of Charleston, was received with great applause.

February 21:

In the Senate, no important business was done.

In the House, the bill providing a government for States overthrown or subverted by rebellion was laid on the table, 91 to 63.


An official dispatch from General Gillmore states that Charleston fell into our possession on the morning of the 18th inst., with over two hundred pieces of artillery (another account says that all the guns were spiked), and a supply of ammunition. The surrounding defenses having been evacuated during the previous night by the rebel forces, the Mayor surrendered the city to the troops of General Schimelfening, who at once took possession. The cotton warehouses, arsenal, quarter master's stores, rail road bridges, two iron-clads, and several vessels in the ship yard, were burned by the enemy. The railroad building contained 200 kegs of powder, which exploded with terrific effect, killing and wounding upward of one hundred people. It is supposed that 6000 bales of cotton were consumed in the warehouses. The dwelling-houses in the lower part of the city were found to be completely riddled by our shot and shell. The wealthy part of the population had deserted the city, and the poor who remained were suffering for want of food. The Stars and Stripes were raised over Fort Sumter by Captain H. M. Bragg.


A Cincinnati paper states that out of nineteen hundred rebel prisoners at Camp Morton, Indianapolis, only about one-fourth are willing to be exchanged. The remainder want to take the oath of allegiance and remain at the North.


BOTH in England and France the news of the fall of Fort Fishier produced a very positive effect upon public opinion. The Olinde, one of the Franco-rebel rants, sailed from the Isle of Houat, off the coast of France, on the 28th of January. She had been previously supplied by a French steamer with guns, ammunition, crew, coal, and all the other necessaries of an outfit. It was reported that she was hound for Charleston, for the purpose of raising the blockade. If this was really her destination she probably sailed a little too late, in view of our recent accounts of affairs in that vicinity. The latest reports say that the Olinde had reached Corunna, Spain, where she lay in an unseaworthy condition.

The Paris Press, comments at length upon the disposition shown by our House of Representatives in applying the term republic to Mexico in the Consular and Diplomatic Appropriation bill. There seems to be an apprehension that the prospect of peace between the North and South will hasten on a crisis between America and Europe. The Gazette de France regrets that the Imperial Government has not taken a more determined attitude in relation to American affairs. The Patrie thinks the Emperor has dons the best he could, and throws blame upon the rest of Europe for compelling France to adopt an inactive policy. The story about the cession of Durango, Sonora, and other provinces by Maximilian to Napoleon was discredited in Paris. On the 4th instant there was a meeting of the Privy Council in Paris. It will be remembered that Prince Napoleon, who is favorable to the Union, is now Vice-President of this body. The affairs of America and their relation to France were the chief object of the meeting. The discussion terminated in this resolution:

" That for the moment it would be wrong to give way to exaggerated fears, and that in the face of the pacific and conciliatory assurances which American diplomacy continues to give, the best course to adopt is to abstain provisionally from all movement, without, however, indulging in a false security."

The British Parliament was opened on the 6th. The Lord Chancellor read the Queen's Speech. The conclusion of the Danish war was briefly alluded to. Her Majesty remained steadfastly neutral between the contending parties in the American civil war. The opening of the Inland Sea of Japan had afforded security to foreign commerce. The conflict with the New Zealand tribes was not yet terminated. Her Majesty had given her sanction to the meeting of a conference of delegates from her several North American provinces, who, on invitation from Her Majesty's Governor-General, assembled at Quebec. Those delegates adopted resolutions having for their object a closer union of those provinces under a central government. If those resolutions should be approved by the provincial Legislatures a bill would be laid before Parliament for carrying this measure into effect. Ireland during the past year had had its share in the advantages of a good harvest, and trade and manufactures were gradually extending in that part of the kingdom.

The same day there was an important debate in the House of Lords on American affairs, in which the Earl of Derby expressed his opinion that our civil war must terminate either in peaceful separation or in the subjugation of the South. He thought that the resolutions lately passed by the American Congress, looking to the termination of the Reciprocity Treaty and the increased armament on the Lakes, showed a spirit of hostility toward England. Earl Russell soon followed with a speech, in which he claimed that Earl Derby had not made sufficient allowance for the irritation which prevails in the United States. He thought it was unjust in the American Government to find fault with England for what, after trying her best, she could not help. But it was natural that such acts as had been committed should create irritation. He said : "We have had ships fitted out here which have afterward been sent great distances, and there received their armaments and provisions, and then been employed to prey upon the commerce of the United States. We had correspondence in our hands which showed that Confederate agents were continually employed either in building ships in this country or in buying merchant ships, which might afterward be sent to France, and thence to other stations, where they might be fitted out as cruisers against the commerce of the United States. Now I do say that, in fairness, when the authorities of the United States see a number of ships that come in some way or other from English ports and English rivers, and that these ships are afterward fitted out as men of war, and that their commerce suffers very grievously from it I do say it is natural that they should feel irritation. But they ought at the same time certainly to ask this question whether Her Majesty's Government have done every thing which the law of nations authorizes, and the municipal law of this country permits, to prevent this country being made the basis of warlike operations, so as to involve us in a war against the United States. I do not feel at all surprised that the Government of the United States should be annoyed, and feel deeply that those who are the friends of those States should have their territories made the basis of these operations. So again with regard to Canada." At the close of his speech Earl Russell referred to the action taken by our Government against slavery as a matter of gratulation.

It is said that Maximilian, of Mexico, has addressed an autograph letter to the Pope explaining his reasons for assuming the claim of his government to all the Mexican church property.

The opening of the Suez Canal to navigation throughout its entire length, from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean, has been officially announced to all the chambers of commerce in Europe by M. Lesseps, President and Superintendent.

General M'Clellan, with his family, arrived in Liverpool on the 5th inst., and left for London on the next day. Late advices from New Orleans state that the Mexican General Mejia, commanding at Matamoras, has entered into arrangements with the rebel authorities, by which all refugees from Texas are to be returned and immediately to be conscripted into the rebel army.

General Mejia claims that in taking this step he is acting under the orders of the Emperor Maximilian.

General Canby is said to have sent word to General Mejia that he will retaliate by taking and holding Mexican officers as hostages for every refugee returned to the rebels,


HOW STOLEN GOODS TRAVEL IN ENGLAND.—Considerable ingenuity is displayed by the thieves in conveying their unlawful possessions from one place to another. Hampers, clothes baskets, hat boxes, carpet bags, and brown paper parcels, containing stolen articles, are carried by women dressed like servants, and by honest and unsuspecting errand boys, and parties who frequently have no knowledge of the contents of the luggage. Stolen articles are booked regularly at the goods station, and travel along the streets and railways in company with honest merchandise. A thief will occasionally buy two or three pounds of cheese or butter, insert therein a gold watch or a diamond ring, place the eatable upon a plate, and the savory commodity is safely carried along the street under the detective's very nose, whose only notion or desire concerning the cheese may be that it would make a nice rarebit for his supper. Thousands of pounds' worth of jewelry have traveled the whole length of a railway stitched up in a salmon or a hare. Some thieves, it is said, once obtained, in the provinces, a large quantity of jewelry, and devised a strange method of sending it to the fence master in London. They purchased a very large Stilton cheese, scooped out the inside, filled it with valuables, and then sent it off per goods train like any other cheese.

A MODEST MAN.—The Rev. Mr. Burnham, of Winchester, Connecticut, recently enlisted in the army as a private, and was sent to the rendezvous at New Haven. On the morning after his arrival he was summoned before the commanding officer of the post and addressed : "Mr. Burnham, I see by your name in the list sent to me that you are a reverend. About a dozen reverends have enlisted and come here, but you are the first who has staid over night without asking for a chaplaincy; so I guess we'll make you chaplain." And he was made chaplain accordingly.

VALUABLE PREY. —A peasant in the environs of Koenigsral (Bohemia) some time since found a hare, which had been caught in a snare, and carried it home, where it soon recovered from its partial strangulation and became the pet of his children. It was extremely tame, and allowed the young folks to handle it as they pleased. One day the children, in their play, put round its neck a necklace of gold ducats belonging to their mother, and were highly amused at seeing their favorite thus decorated. Unfortunately, at this moment the outer door was opened by a person entering, and the hare scampered off into the fields with the necklace, and has not since been seen.

EXTRAORDINARY DISCOVERY IN A FRENCH CONVENT.—The correspondent of a contemporary, writing in reference to a strange occurrence said to have taken place in 1829 at Charenton-sur-Marne, France, says: "May I be allowed to state that your correspondent has made a mistake as to the locality; it should have been at Charenton-sur-Seine, near Paris. In 1829 I was engaged on the works of Messrs. Manby and Wilson, under Mr. Holroyd, the engineer of the works, when time after time large numbers of infant skeletons were discovered in all parts of the premises, which, I believe, had been a convent of a very strict order of nuns. At first we did not take much notice of the circumstance; but when the attention of Mr. Holroyd and Mr. Armstrong was called to the singular affair we were directed to count the remains, and from that day we counted and placed to one side no less than 287 entire skeletons of infants. We took no account of parts of skeletons, which, if they had been all put together, would have far outnumbered the entire ones which were counted. I speak far within bounds when I say that there were found not fewer than the remains of 800 children, and there was not a single bone of an adult person among them. The mayor came to the premises and had the bones placed in boxes and privately buried in the cemetery, and orders were given to hush up the affair." It with be for our readers to draw their own conclusions. London Weekly Times, January 29.

THE LAUGH OF WOMAN.—A woman has no natural gift more bewitching than a sweet laugh. It is like the sound of flutes on the water. It leads from her in a clear, sparkling rill ; and the heart that hears it feels as if bathed in the cool, exhilarating spring. Have you ever pursued an unseen fugitive through trees, led on by a fairy laugh, now here, now there, now lost, now found? We have. And we are pursuing that wandering voice to this day. Sometimes it comes to us in the midst of care or sorrow, or irksome business, and then we turn away and listen, and hear it ringing through the room like a silver bell, with power to scare away the evil spirits of the mind. How much we owe to that sweet laugh! It turns the prose to poetry; it flings showers of sunshine over the darkness of the wood in which we are traveling; it touches with delight even our sleep, which is no more the image of death, but is consumed with dreams that are the shadows of immortality.

THE MOST MARVELOUS STORY IN THE WOULD.—Some gentlemen were dining together and relating their traveling adventures. One of them dealt so much in the marvelous that it induced another to give him a lesson. " I was once," said he, "engaged in a skirmishing party in America. I advanced too far, was separated from my friends, and saw three Indians in pursuit of me. The horrors of the tomahawk in the hands of angry savages took possession of my mind. I considered for a moment what was to be done. Most of us love life, and mine was both precious and useful to my family. I was swift of foot, and fear added to my speed. After looking back for the country was an open one I at length perceived that one of my enemies had outrun the others; and the well known saying,' Divide and conquer' occurring to me, I slackened my speed and allowed him to come up. We, engaged in mutual fury. I hope none here [bowing to his auditors] will doubt the result. In a few minutes he lay a corpse at my feet. In this short space of time the two Indians had advanced upon me, so I took again to my heels not from cowardice, I can in truth declare, but with the hope of reaching a neighboring wood, where I knew dwelt a tribe friendly to the English. This hope, however, I was forced to give up, for on looking back I saw one of my pursuers far before the other. I waited for him, recovering my almost exhausted breath, and soon this Indian shared the fate of the first. I had now only one enemy to deal with, but I felt fatigued, and, being near the wood, I was more desirous to save my own life than destroy another of my fellow-creatures. I plainly perceived smoke curling up among the trees; I redoubled my speed; I prayed to Heaven; I felt assured my prayers would be granted; but at this moment the yell of the Indian's voice sounded in my ears I even thought I felt his warm breath. There was no choice: I turned round " Here the gentleman who had related the wonderful stories at first grew impatient past all endurance, and called out, "Well, Sir, and you killed him also?" " No, Sir ; he killed me!"

CURIOUS MEANS OF DISTINGUISHING REAL FROM APPARENT DEATH.—The different effect produced on living and on dead bodies by fire is applied to this purpose. If the end of a finger or toe, for example, of a corpse is exposed for a. few seconds to flame, the skin will rise up in a mass, and form a very large blister, which will ultimately burst. The fluids of the body are changed to vapor by the heat which never can occur during life, since they would be driven off by the vital force and will continue to ooze out, at least until the surface is reduced to the condition of a coal. It is often very difficult to ascertain with certainty whether or not death has taken place, and persons have been buried alive through mistake. This method is considered to leave no doubt on the subject.

THE MEETING OF "FRIENDS."—Maori friends, on meeting after long separation, are in the habit of rubbing noses, like the Esquimaux and the natives of some of the Hebrides Islands, and shedding copious floods of tears. We have seen two old fellows seize one another by the shoulders, and try the power of friction on the points of one another's noses with such vivacity that we have awaited the result with some anxiety, dreading lest, when the ceremony was over, little of a nose should be left to either; but we have never seen even a slight abrasion ; the skin seems to get hardened like that on the palm of a working man's hand. Whether the friction of the nose exercises any influence on the lachrymose glands we can not undertake to say ; we can only vouch to the copiousness of the tears. But we must not mistake those tears; they are not genuine proofs of affection. We should not

exactly say that they are crocodile's tears; but there is about as much sincerity in them as in the salutations which passed between two notables of a Scotch parish. John Menzie and William Morrison were sworn friends ; or, at least, you would have supposed them to be so from the hearty greeting which passed between them whenever they met. They seized one another's hands, and held them in a tenacious gripe as long as the interview lasted. Aweel," John would say, "I hae mony kind freends, but nane I am half so glad to see as William Morrison." "And I, John," would be the rejoinder, " wad gang a long simmer mile and mair to see your honest face." John and William would then part. On meeting the former, we would say, " Was that William Morrison you were talking to, John?" " Ay, ay," John would say, "a puir silly body, easy lifted up, and easy castit doon." On meeting William, we would say, "So you met John Menzie today, William ?" "Ay, the double faced auld scoundrel ! I ken him weel." There is, perhaps, as much sincerity in Maori embraces and tears as in the salutations which passed between these two worthies.

THE new seal of the state of Nevada is nine inches in circumference too large for any practicable use. The design represents the sun rising over mountains, a rail road train, a quartz mill, a tunnel, a man dumping ore, and a six-mule team hauling rock. The motto is, " All for our country."



To dream of nothing is lucky.

To dream that you have written all Mr. Tupper's works (and on waking to find you haven't) is very lucky. To dream, only to dream, that you've committed a capital crime, is lucky for you.


To dream that, in a fearful shipwreck, you have been hurled upon a sharp rock, and to awake to a sense of your position on the floor, is unlucky.

To dream of goblins, villains of the deepest dye, assassins, daggers, and such things as utterly destroy your rest, is decidedly unlucky.

To keep on dreaming and awaking five times in a night is unlucky.

To dream that you are fighting for your life with wild bears, and to find yourself hitting your wife on the bead with a bolster, is unlucky, very unlucky.

To dream that you are making a long and powerful address to a jury and to deliver the same oratorically, is unlucky for any one who happens to be in the same room trying to go to sleep.

CLERICAL TASTE.—Church belles.

When is a cat like a tea-pot?—When your tea's in it.

Why does a duck go under the water?—For divers reasons. 

Why does the same duck come out of the water?—For sun dry reasons.

When does the donkey, prefer to eat thistles rather than hay?—When he is a jackass.

Women in hoops make butts of themselves.

ALDERMAN M—'S NOTIONS, OF A BANK DIRECTOR. One who overlooks the accounts.

When is Champagne calculated to make an Imbiber noisy ? When the wine itself is creaming.


The lady who sunk all her capital in railways is anxious to obtain a loop line to recover it with. She may fish for it.

The gentleman who borrowed an oyster knife to open an account at his banker's with is anxious to meet with a patent cork screw to draw a check with.

The person who let fall a remark about his friend has taken up an observation made by a third party, and the law will be called in to decide the question of ownership.

The young heir who fell out with his father has dropped upon a snug thing, and is therefore likely to be taken up again by his relatives.

The lady who broke off a match with her cousin because he would not come to the scratch has got another flame.

Lady Caroline Lamb had, in a moment of passion, knocked down one of her pages with a stool. The poet Moore, to whom this story was told, observed, "Oh, nothing is more natural than for a literary lady to double down a page." "I would rather," said one of the company, "advise Lady Caroline to turn over a new leaf."

FIGURATIVE.—A man being asked what he had for dinner, replied, " A lean wife and the ruin of man for sauce." On being asked for an explanation it appeared that his dinner consisted of a spare rib of pork and apple sauce.

BANDS OF HOPE—Wedding rings.

A CHEERFUL MEASURE—The horn of plenty.

WANTED.—A firkin of butter churned from the "milk of roses."

Brandy punches have a tendency to make the pavement very slippery. They also make one's head heavier than his heels, and his purse lighter than either.

A mad Englishman in Paris recently smashed the face

of a statue in one of the public squares because it looked

like his faithless wife. He said, by way of apology, that he thought women of that kind should be dis-countenanced.

When a young man is about to settle down as "the husband of one wife," he should resolve never to make her jealous with his Wild Sallies and his gay Ann Ticks.

A MARK OF CIVIZATION.—A French writer concluded an accound of his shipwreck in these works : " Having arrived at an unknown region I traveled eleven hours without discovering the least trace of any human being. At list I perceived, to my great joy, a wretch suspended on

a gibbet. 'Ah !' I exclaimed, 'I am now in a civilized country.'"

"You're a fool," said a coxcomb, one day, to a clown :

and the answer he got was a. queer one. " Why, dang it !

you partly say true, I must own; if I bean't quite a fool, I be near one."

Why are gentlemen's love letters so liable to go astray? Because they are always miss directed.

When is a cigar like an old maid ? When there is no match for it.

A colonel of one of our cavalry regiments was recently complaining at an evening party, that from the ignorance and inattention of the officers he was obliged to do the

whole duty of the regiment. Said he, "I am my own major, my own captain, my own lieutenant, my own ensign, my own sergeant, and " "Your own trumpeter," said a lady present.

An old maid is more, liberal than a young one. The

latter may always be willing to lend you a hand; the former will give you one, and thank you too.

NOT SATISFIED!.—The East Indies boast of a nutmeg weighing four ounces, and, not satisfied, is now asking for

"a grater."




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