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We have Northern news as late as Monday last, the 20th. The rumored capture of Petersburg, published in Philadelphia papers of the 18th, had sent gold down to 95½, but upon subsequent advices showing that the place was not captured, it rose to 96 ⅜. The following is a description of

The capture of Petersburg.

Douthart Landing, Va, 1 P. M., June 16.
--After sending my dispatch of this morning from the heights southeast of Petersburg, I went over the conquered lines with General Grant and the engineer officers.

The works are of the very strongest kind, more difficult to take than was Missionary Ridge at Chattanooga.

The hardest fighting was done by the black troops. The forts they stormed I think the worst of all.

After the affair was over, General Smith went to thanks them and tell them he was proud of their courage and dash.

He says they cannot be exceeded as soldiers, and that hereafter he will send them in a difficult place as readily as his best white troops.

They captured six out of the thirteen cannon which he took.

The prisoners he took were from Beauregard's command. Some of them said they had just crossed the sames river above Drewry's Bluff.

I do not think any of Lee's army had reached Petersburg when Smith stormed it. They seem to be there this morning, however, and to be making arrangements to hold the west side of the Appomattox.

The town they cannot think of holding, as it lies directly under our guns.

The weather continues splendid.

City Point, Va, June 16, 4.15 P. M, via Jamestown Island, 11.45 P. M.--General Butler reports from Bermuda Hundred that the enemy have abandoned the works in front of that place. His troops are now engaged in clearing up the railroad between Petersburg and Richmond.

The following dispatch does not designate the hour; but it is supposed to be later than the preceding ones:

Jamestown, Va., June 16.--I came down from the pontoon above Fort Powhatan with dispatches for Secretary Stanton. Just as I left Captain Pitkin reported to me that Petersburg was in our possession.

The Inquirer says editorially of the "capture of Petersburg" and the great movements of Grant:

‘ The capture of Petersburg is a very important object in the plan of the campaign. It completely shuts off all access to Richmond by the railroad leading to Welson, Goldsboro' Wilmington, Charleston; and Savannah, with lateral lines running from Charleston to Atlanta, and from Savannah by way of Macon to the same city. If Hunter and Crook have captured Lynchburg, which is their object, no railroad communication with Richmond remains but the road to Danville. Sheridan is probably operating upon that line. There is a report in the Richmond papers of the defeat of that gallant officer by Fitzhugh Lee but with the memory of the mendacious dispatches from Lee, Senior, in relation to his victories over Grant between the Wilderness and Cold Harbor, we shall take the liberty of doubting this piece of rebel news until we hear further.

Petersburg is a very important place. It had a population in 1860 of twenty thousand. It possesses extensive facilities for business. Vessels of one hundred tons burden can go to its wharves up the Appomattox, and those of large size to Waltham's landing, six miles below. The larger vessels engaged in the Petersburg trade usually discharged their cargoes at City Point. The town is well built, and contains about a dozen churches. It has also three or four banks, several cotton and woolen factories, three rope walks, two iron furnaces and numerous mills of various kinds. The limits of the borough include the decayed village of Blanford, in Prince George county, which was once, in some respects, superior even to Petersburg itself. The remains of its church are among the most interesting and pictures are ruins of Virginia.

The next movements of Gen. Grant will be of great importance. He has several objects to attain. One is the capture of Fort Waithall, which now guards the left flank of the rebel line. Another will be the reduction of Fort , and another will be such a powerful demonstration against the line of the Danville railroad as will place that last resource of the rebels within our power. Hard fighting may be necessary to effect these objects, but with Grant there is "no such word as fail."

How Grant is working it — the glorious Changes
in the Military situation.

The Philadelphia Inquirer follows "the capture of Petersburg" with an editorial on "the operations of Grant's army" and the "glorious change in the situation," in which it says:

‘ To get a full appreciation of the rapid character of the work which General Grant has lately performed, the reader should trace back the course of events during the preceding three days. On Sunday evening General Grant and the army were on the Chickahominy with Lee's army in their front, protected by that river, and with five successive lines of defences to fall back upon between it and Richmond. The defences mentioned were known to be very form table works, and the character of the intervening country, alternate swamps and rolling hills, made them exceedingly difficult to approach. General Grant was therefore apparently brought to a stand stiff. It seemed out of the question for him to make another movement by the left flank to avoid these strong works of the enemy, for such a manœuvre would uncover Washington. At the same time General Butler's column was confined almost entirely to the defensive, and was just so much unavailable force, greatly wanted for co-operation, but not in hand for use.

’ That was the state of affairs on Sunday last, and most people, even some of the impatient ones, had made up their minds that some considerable time must elapse before there could be any decisive action. But see how Gen. Grant's grand genius for moving large armies and for overcoming difficulties his changed all that. From Sunday to Wednesday is but three days, but in that brief time the column under Hunter, Crook and Averill are placed in position to cover Washington from any enterprise Lee might be desperate enough to attempt. Grant once more moves by the left flank beyond Lee's elaborate obstructions; Gen. Butler's column is liberated so as to take the offensive; Smith and Hancock are battering down the defenses of Petersburg, and Gen. Grant's whole army is moving against Richmond, on the south side of the James river, and on its weakest side!

If the scribes of the American press had not made a strong word feeble by their abuse of it, we should be tempted to call such far-reaching combinations, such rapid movements, and such brilliant results, truly Napoleonic.

It has been observed that some people thought Gen. Grant had come to a stand still on the Chickahominy for a considerable part of the summer, but those who had studied his other campaigns felt well assured that he would half but a very short time there or anywhere else.

He is operating now very much as he did in his Vicksburg campaign, not only with regard to his frequent change of base, but with respect to his persistence in seeking the right point of attack.--When the direct attack upon Chickasaw Bluff failed under Sherman, Grant tried the canal opposite the city. When it was found that that first would not work, he tried successively Yazoo Pass, Sunflower river, Lake Providence, and Steele's Bayon. After the failure of all these, he ran his transports through the gauntlet of the Vicksburg batteries, marching his troops overland through Louisiana, crossed the Mississippi at Bruinsburg, and headed once more for Vicksburg by the Southern route, the only one not previously tried. He fought several battles and won several victories on the way, just as he has now commenced doing after crossing the James. His Generals, while en route, gobbled up considerable bodies of the enemy and large numbers of guns, just as Smith did on Wednesday. He deflected from a straight line to capture Jackson and cripple Johnston, just as he did the other day to capture Petersburg and whip Beauregard.

How suggestive is all this. The same bold and brilliant strategy, the same confusion and discomfiture to the enemy, the same indomitable purpose to discover the right point for his attack, who can doubt the same ultimate success? Grant will try all ways, and hold fast to that which is good. Tenacity is the very essence of his composition.

Let it be borne in mind that Hunter's column is in just the position either to cover Washington or to cut Lee off from the Southwest, and that Grant, having united Butler's column to his own, is moving upon Richmond in great force on its weakest side, and in position to cut Lee off upon the south.

When the reader has done this, he will have a fair idea of the glorious change made in the situation by the movements of the first four days of the present week.

The latest information somewhat Different.

So much for the Philadelphia Inquirer of the 18th. The same paper, of the 29th, had heard the news. It announces that Petersburg has not been taken, although the Yankee army is within 2,500 yards of the rebel city, and can plainly see the spires and steeples of the churches. The Inquirer adds:

‘ Down to 8 o'clock Saturday morning the city of Petersburg was still held by the rebels, though Baldy Smith had captured the very strong works to the northeast on Wednesday, followed by the capture of other parts of their lines by Hancock on Thursday, and still others by Burnside on Friday. From the obstinacy of the rebel defence, and from the fact that Grant is pushing forward his troops to "follow up the success" we judge that there is still considerable work to be done at that point. [We should think so]

Sheridan's report of his raid.

Sheridan's official report, which is published says that he destroyed the Central railroad from Trevillian's to Louisa C. M. His intention was to cut the railroad between Charlottesville and Gordonsville and march on Charlottesville. The engagement was the most brilliant of the war, and was not renewed because the horses were out of forage and the men out of ammunition. He took and brought off 370 prisoners of war, including commissioned officers. His loss in prisoners will not exceed 160.

What Grant claims to have captured.

Grant claims to have captured 450 prisoners and four guns on Friday last. He speaks of his change of base as a great success in flank movements, and boasts that he lost not a wagon or piece of artillery.

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