Editorial speculations and Miscellaneous news.
The Number of troops in the field.
Upon this subject the New York Times
, of April 4th, has the following speculations:
There is nothing easier than to exaggerate the force of armies to the field at a given point or on a particular line of invasion or defence.
The highest reasonably authenticated estimate of the whole force of the rebels is about 230,000, or 350 regiments of about 700 effective rank and file each.
One of our morning contemporaries, of yesterday, accepts this estimate, and renders a schedule by States of the different regiments; yet another morning journal peaked with all confidence of 150,000 or 80,000 under Gens. Joseph Johnston
behind the Rappahannock, in Virginia
, alone; while and her estimate of 120,000 at Corinth, in Mississippi
, is currently spoken of as the force concentrated for a general engagement with Grant
and Bued in that quarter.
That the entire rebel force is less than one-half, and scarcely in excess of one-third the grand total of the National
army, there is good reason to suppose.
This b the fair basis of calculation, it is uttered impossible that Johnston
should have 150,000 in Virginia
, or Beauregard
120,000 on the ine of the Memphis and Charleston Railroad, including the raw and unequipped device at Decatur
, North Alabama
has less than 60,000 enrolled.
Of her eighty regiments, we grant the whole to be in service in her own borders, but not behind the Rappahannock
alone, otherwise Norfolk
, &c., would be defenceless.
has 25,000 in service; these are mainly at home; South Carolina
, 20,000, of whom nearly one-half is, or ought to be, in and around Charleston
, 32,000, one-half or more in and around Savannah
40,000, more than one-half with Price
, and in and around New Orleans.
This distribution would leave Mississippi
30,000 and Alabama
10,000, to make up the army at Island No.10
, and at and around Corinth
We all remember how the force at Bowling Green
was magnified last fall into 60,000, 80,000, and even 100,000 men; yet after Fort Donelson
was supplied with 12 or 15 regiments from this point, the retreating military rabble that fled from Bowling Green
on the approach of Buell
, and that halted at Nashville
only long enough to throw the people into panic and dismay, numbered, perhaps, less than 6,000 or 8,000.
And so at Columbus
, the reported strength of 40,000 dwindled into 12,000 or 15,000, when the defences at that point were abandoned.
It is not prudent, of course, to underrate the force of the enemy at any given point or all points together.
We have no inclination to do so. But it is not well to have the country kept in a state of unnecessary suspense by exaggerating the peril of unequal numbers supposed to be threatening our Western and Virginia
The good people of the North and West may rest assured that Gen. Halleck
will take care of the enemy in the direction of Memphis
, and we much mistake the force and material of our army of the Poteman if Johnston
, with Magruder
thrown in, are able to repulse it in Virginia
Emancipation in the District.
The Northern editors differ in their views of the bill which has passed the Senate for abolishing slavery in the District of Columbia, though most of them approve its general features.
A recent New York paper, of the Black Republican
The House of Representatives will, we trust, amend the Senate bill in several particulars.
The appropriation for removing the negroes from the country, wise in itself, becomes folly in the presence of immediate emancipation.
For season, there will be no negroes to be by the bill, when it shall have become and act; and, for another, the slaves, (assuming some to be left,) when first liberated, will be no proper subjects of colonization and settlement, where they shall have to provide for themselves.
The "institution has reared them in habits of dependence and attendance upon the whites; it has given them no capacity for self-maintenance and self-government.
The transformation of domestic servants, accustomed long to none but indoor employments, into tamers of tropical forests and success navigators of new and unaccustomed regi may be effected in a long course of years; but not without some little preparation and some skill in the a of self support.
The substitution of the provision for gradual emancipation for the peremptory method of the bill, can alone save its framers from the charge of disguising heartless cruelty under mask of eager philanthropy.
The measure we believe to be ill timed; let it not also be ill contrived and mischievous in practice.
At the very last moment of the debate on the bill, Mr. Bayard
, of Delaware
, addressed the Senate.
He conceded the right of Congress to legislate for the District of Columbia.
He admitted the constitutionality of such a measure, but objected to this particular bill as unconstitutional and unwise.
The bill takes property in violation of the Constitution
, and also mixes up the question of loyalty and confiscation with the question of taking property.
The spring trade at the North.
The following article upon the "revival of business" in New York, is undoubtedly intended to revive the drooping spirits of a people oppressed with the burden of an immense and daily increasing debt; with a sure prospect of unparalleled taxation.
The allusion to a "speedy termination of the war" will command the attention of every reader:
As the spring advances, business is rapidly looking up and promises to be quite satisfactory in spite of the war. The active season is somewhat backward, owing to the extensive snows of the North
, and a natural timidity among country merchants.
The prospect of a speedy conclusion of the war, and the wonderful exhibition of the ability of this country to pass through the crisis comparatively unscathed, has, however, established within the last few weeks a greater confidence.
Our wholesale houses begin to show signs of life, and not a few exhibit the unwonted spectacle of busy cartmen porters, and packers laboring far into the night.
The railroads and other means of transportation already begin to feel the impetus of the revival.
Among the heavy dealers especially is the revivification felt.
The bountiful last year's crop has left the West
well off, and in a small degree makes up for the loss of Southern patronage.
Then the necessity of clothing, feeding and keeping well equipped our army of seven-tenths of a million soldiers, affords a desirable and reliable customer to many branches of trade concentrating in this city.
There is indeed a good demand and fair prices for all kinds of staple goods, on account of the falling off in manufacturing.
To a great extent the war has changed the course of trade, and made up in one quarter what has been lost in another.
A similar remark may be made with regard to house-renting.
While all the heavy renting houses are depreciating in value, there is steady, if not increasing, demand for both dwelling houses and stores of medium size.--The large marble palaces that adorn Broadway
are not so easily filled with paying tenants as they were a year since; and we have heard of cases where owing to the slackness of trade fifty per cent has been voluntarily relinquished by the landlords.
Among the lucky owners of moderate sized dwelling-houses there is, however, little dissatisfaction with the times.
The prudence of business men, the necessary retrenchment of expenses, has created such a demand for that class of tenements as to make them almost at a premium.
A curious story is told of the owner of one of the finest marble buildings recently erected on the lower part of Broadway
Before the building was completed, and before the crisis, he had engaged, at an enormous rent, two tenants in the Southern
By the time the building was finished they had collapsed, and were glad to any off from their written contract to occupy the premises.
They paid the millionaire three hundred
in the notes of their Southern creditors!
The recipient guaranteed not to trouble the endorsers until he had exhausted all legal means on the drawers of the notes.
If all landlords would take their pay in such paper, even at such a sacrifice, they would have less trouble in procuring tenants.
A Social Incident.
Between eight and nine o'clock on the evening of the 3d instant, a deliberate attempt was made to murder one of the waiter girls in the Concert Saloon
, No. 444 Broadway, New York.
The following are the facts in the case: James Francis Normand
, a man about thirty-five years of age, entered the place named, sat down beside one of the girls and entered into conversation with her. She told him that she understood he intended to shoot her. He denied any such intention, and told her to get drinks.
She went to get the drinks, and on returning he shot her in the left side.
He was arrested immediately and taken to the 14th Precinct station-house.
The wounded girl was taken to the hospital.
At the station-house the prisoner said that some time ago he had been engaged to be married to Kate White
, one of girls in the saloon; that in view of that event, he had given her $100 to purchase house furniture, with which she absconded, and he was determined to kill her friend, and he was very sorry he had not blown her brains out. At 11 o'clock at night the wounded girl was out of danger, the ball having been extracted from her body.
The prisoner says he has plenty of money, is a cousin of Secretary Seward,
and resides with Mr. James Farley
, No. 56 Norton st. He was very sure that "this affair would, may-be, finish up the concert saloon business."
Reports of refugees.
The steamer King Phillip
has arrived at Washington
from the lower river, bringing up four refugees from Richmond
and Westmoreland counties
, who come off from Kinsale
on Saturday last.
They state that the rebels are pressing every male between the ages of eighteen and forty-five into the service, and they had been closely hunted by the press range for a week or two.
The rebels have mostly, left the neighborhood of Loudoun
, but a few squads of their cavalry roam the country, impressing into the service all able to bear arms.
The four refugees state that they are natives of that section--one being an old farmer, named Gardy
, and the others young men engaged in business near him. One of the young men has been actin as Confederate Postmaster at Kinsale
Southern sympathy in Baltimore.
H. F. Jucken
, one of the prisoners taken in the battle of Winchester
, has been released at the intercession of his father, who is a chaplain in the United States Navy, and a nephew of the rebel Gen. Jackson
The Baltimore Sun
illustrates the sympathy displayed in that city.
It states that Messrs. Tilghman
, of the committee appointed to look after the prisoners, report that they have now in their hands, for safe keeping, $1,371 in Confederate money, which will be paid over to the prisoners on the final release from confinement.
On Wednesday last the committee handed to the prisoners $00 in Baltimore
funds; and on Saturday, previous to their leaving the prison, $500 in one dollar gold pieces
were given them, besides $1,500 worth of clothing, &c.; making the entire sum handed over to the prisoners by the committee, $2,200. These sums were entirely independent of individual contributions of money, provisions and clothing.
These independent contributions were quite large in the aggregate, one lady alone sending them a large box of clothing.