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Correspondence of the Richmond Dispatch.
affairs in Petersburg.


Petersburg, March 17, 1861.
What a wonderful thing is party spirit, and what strong passions are cooked by the conflict of great principles! There is little less of this same violence displayed at the present day in discussing character and opinions than was exhibited in some of the most memorable periods the world has ever known. We have still "Cavaliers and Roundheads," as hot in argument, at least, as in the days of poor Charles I., and it is not unfair to presume that all the merciless fanaticism and devoted loyalty of that time will be faithfully reflected among us, under the influence of the political revolution which has already divided our country into opposing factions. --Pardon these reflections, suggested by the events of the last few days — taking up my pen to make a simple record, it has betrayed me into a slight application of the lessons taught us by the past.

The result of the late voting shows a remarkable change in public sentiment, and this change is undoubtedly owing to the extreme policy of the leading powers. Petersburg has now, most emphatically, declared in favor of secession, and Mr. Branch will be enabled to see his way more clearly in this trying crisis. The vote was as large as any ever cast, with the exception of the late Presidential election, and this simple fact shows how general was the interest felt in this contest.

Elated by their victory, the conquering party, numbering many hundreds, formed in procession on Friday evening, and marched through the streets with music and banners. During their march to the Richmond Depot, they were saluted by crowds at every turn — cheer upon cheer was given, and even the ladies shared in the general enthusiasm, waving their handkerchiefs and smiling their approval. But yesterday evening was the grand climax; large numbers of citizens turned out to meet the Richmond delegation, which arrived between 8 and 9 o'clock at night. The booming of cannon, the firing of rockets, the glare of torches, with the inspiring strains of the band, these all united to give grand effect to the living tableau. The geat jubilee was held at Jarratt's Hotel; there the crowd was el oquently addressed by Messrs. Douglass of the Senate, Roger A. Pryor, Gordon of Albemarle, Crenshaw of Richmond, Wallace, and others. My space does not allow me to give even an outline of these graceful and appropriate speeches; suffice it to say, they were warmly received, and gave the highest satisfaction. So much for politics.

Bishop Johns is expected here the latter part of this week to administer the rite of confirmation at the two Episcopal churches.--I learn that the number to be confirmed is quite large. He will also administer the rite of "ordination," of which I will say more anon.

Mon CŒur.

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Wallace (1)
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