y ignorant of the plans and forces of the enemy.
It is my belief that they render as much service to the enemy as to us; and they certainly do obtain passports on the other side.
Gen. Winder and his alien detectives seem to be on peculiar terms of intimacy with some of these men; for they tell me they convey letters for them to Maryland, and deliver them to their families.
This is an equivocal business.
Why did they not bring their families away before the storm burst upon them?
To-day the Secretary told me, in reply to my question, that he had authentic information of the seizure of Messrs. Slidell and Mason, our commissioners to Europe, by Capt. Wilkes, of the U. S. Navy, and while on board the steamer Trent, a British vessel, at sea. I said I was glad of it. He asked why, in surprise.
I remarked that it would bring the Eagle cowering to the feet of the Lion.
He smiled, and said it was, perhaps, the best thing that could have happened.
And he cautions me
ehensions whether that place can be held against a determined attack, unless a supporting force of 10,000 men be sent there immediately.
It is in the command of Major- Gen. G. A. Smith.
More propositions to ship cotton in exchange for the supplies needed by the country.
The President has no objection to accepting them all, provided the cotton don't go to any of the enemy's ports.
How can it be possible to avoid this liability, if the cotton be shipped from the Mississippi River?
Well, the President is a bold man!
He has put in Randolph's place, temporarily at least, Major-Gen. Gustavus W. Smith--who was Street Commissioner in the City of New York, on the day that Capt. G. W. Randolph was fighting the New Yorkers at Bethel!
Gen. Wise is out in a card, stating that in response to a requisition for shoes for his suffering troops, Quartermaster-Gen. A. C. Myers said, Let them suffer.
The enemy attacked Fredericksburg yesterday, and there was some skirmishi
Vice-President Stephens writes a long letter to the Secretary, opposing the routine policy of furloughs, and extension of furloughs; suggesting that in each district some-one should have authority to grant them.
He says many thousands have died by being hastened back to the army uncured of their wounds, etc.-preferring death to being advertised as deserters.
Captain Warner sent me a bag of sweet potatoes to-day, received from North Carolina.
We had an excellent dinner.
We have no news whatever, except some damage reported at Charleston, done to two monitors yesterday.
The bombardment has assumed no new phase.
A letter from Gen. J. E. Johnston, Meridian, Miss., indicates that the Secretary has been writing him and saying that he was responsible for the outrages of the impressing agents in his department.
Gen. J. disclaims the responsibility, inasmuch as the agents referred to act under orders from the Commissary-General or Secretary of War.
e overwhelming numbers; that the President did not favor him with any directions; that Lee retreated before Grant, and everybody praised him for it; that Gen. Hood professed to be his friend, when seeking his removal, or cognizant of the purpose to remove him; and that the vituperation heaped upon him in certain papers seemed to have Executive authorization at Richmond.
The President indorses this growlingly; that it all differs with his understanding of the facts at the time, etc.
Bright, calm, and pleasant.
All quiet below, save our bombardment of Dutch Gap Canal.
The Senate passed a resolution yesterday, calling on the President for a statement of the number of exemptions granted by the Governors.
This will, perhaps, startle Governor Smith, of Virginia, who has already kept out of the army at least a thousand.
Perhaps it will hit Governor Brown, of Georgia, also; but Sherman will hit him hardest.
He must call out all his fighting people now, or