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December 3.

Major Bowen's Cavalry were attacked at Salem, Dent Co., Mo., this morning at four o'clock, by three hundred rebels under command of Colonels Freeman and Turner. They charged upon a house in which some of the Federal soldiers were sleeping, killing and wounding fifteen, shooting them through the windows and as they emerged from the house. Major Bowen, whose Headquarters were at the court house, one hundred yards distant, rushed out and rallied his men, when a street fight took [101] place. The Federals charged upon the rebels, drove them from the streets, and followed them some distance out of town. They were perfectly cleaned out and fled. Many of the rebels were killed and wounded, but the number was not ascertained. Major Bowen had possession of the town, and sent to Rolla, Mo., for a surgeon and a reinforcement of fifty men. Capt. Dodd, of the rebel force, was badly wounded and taken prisoner. He said Turner had one hundred and thirty men under his command. Among the dead on the Federal side was James Ayres, of Company A, commanded by Captain Stevens. The following were wounded: William Cartwright, Wilson Randolph, John Hooper, and Samuel Matlock, of Company A.--St. Louis Democrat.

President Lincoln's Message and the accompanying documents were transmitted to Congress to-day. The Message is clear and explicit in its statements, practical in its suggestions, and eminently conservative in its treatment of the exciting subjects which depend upon the political questions connected with the rebellion. The President urges no scheme of general emancipation or of arming the slaves. “In considering the policy to be adopted for suppressing the insurrection,” says the President, “I have been anxious and careful that the inevitable conflict for this purpose shall not degenerate into a violent and remorseless revolutionary struggle. I have, therefore, in every case, thought it proper to keep the integrity of the Union prominent as the primary object of the contest on our part, leaving all questions which are not of vital military importance to the more deliberate action of the Legislature.” This declaration is eminently satisfactory to the country.

The Western Virginia Convention in session at Wheeling to-day, changed the name of the new State from Kanawha to Western Virginia.

This morning, Gen. Fitz John Porter sent out a small scouting party to make a reconnoissance in the vicinity of Vienna, Va. It consisted of a squadron of the Third Pennsylvania Cavalry, composing Companies F and M, under command of Captain Bell, numbering one hundred and twenty men. The first information received from Captain Bell, was the arrival at Gen. Porter's Headquarters this afternoon of an orderly, with the intelligence that the squadron had met the enemy in considerable force — said to be five hundred cavalry and two hundred infantry — and that our men had engaged them and suffered much.

Upon learning this, General Porter in person, with a force of four regiments of infantry and two companies of cavalry, started to the rescue of Captain Bell's party, and met them a short distance beyond Fall's Church, on their return.

Captain Bell reports that they proceeded a short distance beyond Vienna, when they encountered the rebel cavalry that General Wadsworth designed to cut off. The party were defiling through a tract of woods only wide enough for the column to march by twos.

The first indication of the presence of the enemy was the opening of a galling fire upon the rear of his column, just entering the wood, by a body of infantry concealed in a house near at land. Captain Bell ordered his men forward, but on emerging from the wood, they were met by two or three hundred of the rebel cavalry, who opened upon them with carbine and pistol. Many of the horses in Captain Bell's party, not being practised to the discharge of arms, became unmanageable.

The National troops were at once thrown into confusion; but each man, fighting on his own account, discharged his piece at the enemy, emptying several saddles. Two of the rebel horses were brought in. Lieutenant John W. Ford and Sergeant Smith, of Company F, were taken prisoners. Sergeant Parker, of Company M, was seriously injured by the fall of its horse. He was brought back to camp.

When the Nationals returned to camp, fortyfive men were missing. The number killed and wounded is not known.

Henry Fry and Jacob M. Hemslier were hung at Greenville, Tennessee, for bridge-burning.--Henry C. Burnett, Representative from Kentucky, was, upon the motion of Mr. Dunn of Indiana, expelled from the Congress of the United States for active participation in the rebellion.

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