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July 8.

General Banks, at Baltimore, acting under the direction of authorities at Washington, this morning seized the steamers Mary Washington and George W. Weems, both owned and commanded by the Weems Brothers. These steamers have been running for a number of years between Baltimore and the ports of the Patuxent River, and it is said carried down a number of passengers who joined the Confederate army. The seizure was to prevent their being taken in a similar manner to the St. Nicholas and run into Fredericksburg as prizes.--Baltimore American, July 9.

To-day orders were received at the Headquarters of the army, in New York, to send on to the seat of war at once the company of the First Artillery, part of the Fort Sumter garrison, which remained at Fort Hamilton. Instructions were immediately sent down to the brave fellows, who were under arms for the road in a few moments. The old ensign of Sumter went along with them, as they believe “there would be no luck in the company without it.” --N. Y. World, July 11.

This day whilst Col. Porter, of the U. S. Army, with a small party of men, was reconnoitring near the lines of the secession army in Virginia, he was approached by a detachment of the Confederate forces, in command of Capt. Taylor, of Kentucky, bearing a flag of truce. Col. Porter, on bringing the detachment to a halt, was informed that Capt. Taylor was the bearer of a sealed letter from Gen. Davis to President Lincoln, which statement was verified by an endorsement to that effect on the back of the letter, written and signed by Gen. Beauregard at Manassas Junction, and requesting that safe conduct might be given to Capt. Taylor.

Col. Porter accordingly sent Capt. Taylor, accompanied by an officer and an orderly, to the Headquarters of Gen. McDowell, at Arlington, where they arrived at seven o'clock in the evening, and were detained there until the visit of Capt. Taylor was made known to Lieut.-General Scott, upon whose order he was conducted to the General's Headquarters in Washington, where Gen. Scott received the letter of Gen. Davis, and sent it to the President, the bearer of the letter being in the mean time detained at Headquarters.

The President, having read the letter, informed Gen. Scott that he might send the messenger back, and Capt. Taylor immediately took his departure for Arlington, and thence proceeded on his way back to Richmond.

No answer to the letter was given by the President, and it is conjectured that the mission was merely a ruse to get a view of the main works of defence, and ascertain the means at the command of the Government for a forward movement. Certain it is the messenger was not enabled to carry back with him any very encouraging tidings. One object may have been to occupy the attention of our authorities and delay matters for a few days, so as to allow time for aid from Manassas to Johnston at Winchester.--(Doc. 73.)

[23] The following official order appeared today:

Henceforward the telegraph will convey no despatches concerning the operations of the Army not permitted by the Commanding General.

Department of War, July 8, 1861.
The above order is confirmed.

Simon Cameron, Secretary of War.

The Second Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteers, Col. George H. Gordon, left Boston for the seat of war at Martinsburg. The regiment consists of one thousand and fifty men. They wear the regulation black felt hat, turned up at the side. Their coats are made of serviceable blue cloth and their pants of blue flannel. Since the men first went into camp at West Roxbury, they have been put through the most rigid discipline, and are therefore now prepared to meet the enemy under any circumstances. The camp equipage of the regiment, consisting of twenty-five wagons and one hundred horses, left in advance of the troops during the afternoon. Each company is supplied with three thousand ball cartridges and seven days rations. The officers seem to have been well chosen. Among those in command of companies are sons of the late Rufus Choate, Thomas G. Cary, and the lion. Josiah Quincy, Jr. The staff are all well mounted.

Capt. Thomas, or the “French lady” who a short time previously captured the steamer St. Nicholas on the Patuxent River, was himself captured by the Baltimore police.--(Doc. 74.)

The De Kalb Regiment N. Y. S. V., under the command of Colonel Leopold von Gilsa, left New York for the scat of war.--N. Y. Evening Post, July 8.

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