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August 17.

The bombardment of Fort Sumter commenced this morning at daybreak, by the siege-batteries, and the naval shore battery. under General Gillmore, assisted by the Ironsides and the entire monitor fleet, led by Admiral Dahlgren. Fort Gregg, the innermost battery of the rebels on Morris Island, and Fort Wagner, were silenced. A shot from the latter fort struck the monitor Catskill, and, forcing off a portion of the interior lining of the ship, instantly killed Commander Rodgers and Paymaster Woodbury.--(See Supplement.)

Major-General Dix, from his headquarters at New York, issued an address to the citizens of that place, in view of the enforcement of the draft, about to take place, imploring them to preserve order.

Robert Toombs, of Georgia, addressed the following letter to Dr. A. Bees of Americus, in the same State:

my dear Sir: Your letter of the fifteenth instant, asking my authority to contradict the report that ‘I am in favor of reconstruction,’ was received this evening. I can conceive of no extremity to which my country could be reduced in which I would for a single moment entertain any proposition for any union with the North on any terms whatever. When all else is lost, I prefer to unite with the thousands of our own countrymen who have found honorable deaths, if not graves, on the battle-field. Use this letter as you please.

The rebel steamer Nita, having sailed from Havana, on the thirteenth, was captured by the Union steamer De Soto, in lat. 29° 45′, long. 86° 40′, while attempting to violate the blockade.--the Fourth Massachusetts and Twenty-eighth Maine regiments passed through Buffalo, New York, en route for home.--an order, regulating the discharge of prisoners, was issued from the War Department.

Captain Wm. S. Hotchkiss, commander of the Union gunboat General Putnam, was killed while engaged in an expedition up the Piankatank River, Va., by a party of guerrillas.

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