previous next


"Our New Raids"

The quadrilateral editor of the New York Times is certainly the most untiring campaigner (upon paper) that ever existed. No sooner has one system of operations, mapped out for certain success, been brought to ruin by the stupid Confederates who refuse to be conquered by paper campaigns, than we find him busy spinning another."The spider of Pope's famous simile, throned on the centre of a thousand converging lines, is the proper emblem of his indefatigable activity, as it is, likewise, of his poisonous rancor. But a month ago Hunter was to come from the West, take Lynchburg, and cut us off in that direction. Butter was to come from the East and take Petersburg. Thus we were to be cut off from the South. Grant was to come from the North and shut up Lee in Richmond, and there his army was to be starved out. Nothing in the world was so easy as to take Richmond, demolish Lee's army, and crush the rebellion on paper; but when it came to be tried, this notable scheme failed entirely in the execution. Hunter has been driven off, Lynchburg has not been taker, Petersburg is safe, Grant has lost 150,000 men, and is in a position where he is likely to lose as many more, if he will stay till the first of October; Sheridan has been beaten within an inch of his life, Kantz and Wilson have lost all their artillery, all the negroes, spoons, and other plunder they had in possession, three thousand horses, thousands of small arms, untold amounts of stores and baggage, and have gained nothing but the reputation of the thieves and felons which they really are. In a word, the quadrilateral's one hundred and forty-fifth scheme for subduing the rebels has proved a glorious failure. The web which was to encircle the "devoted city" has been brushed away, without leaving a trace behind. No matter:

"The filthy creature's at its work again."

The one hundred and forty sixth plan is now before us. It is eminently worthy of the "quadrilateral," and will recommend itself highly "to the sympathies of youth," especially of Yankee youth, for it is a scheme of plunder on a large scale, and Yankee youths are thieves by instinct. It is headed "Our New Raids," and is introduced by a declaration that "these raids of our cavalry in Virginia have now a military significance," &c. The other raids, it seems, had no "military significance" whatever. They were, we presume, merely set on foot to gratify the instinctive proclivity to theft, which is characteristic of the Yankee race. "Military significance." Oh, yes! everything, of course, has had a military significance with the hero of Solferino ever since his flight from that world-renowned field. He can think of nothing else, dream of nothing else, write of nothing else but matters military. Alas! for his readers; for every morning he

"Rends with tremendous sound their ears asunder, with gun, drum trumpet, blunderbus, and thunder."

A parrot, which talked very plainly, was a great favorite with the sailors on board of one of the English ships that fought at Trafalgar. The day after the battle "Poor Pell" was among the missing, and there was great lamentation among the crew. They thought he had been knocked overboard in the action and drowned. It was not so, however. On the third day after the battle he was seen peeping cautiously above the deck, having crawled out of the hiding place in which he had ensconced himself while the battle was going on. He was hailed with shouts of joy by his old friends, but to their sorrow they soon found that he had entirely lost his speech. To the usual salutation "Pretty Polly" he would only answer "Bom." In a word, Poor Polly was deranged. Tralaigar had not only killed Nelson and destroyed Napoleon's navy, but it had bereft Polly of her senses. The terrible cannonade of that awful day was forever after in her ears. To every term of coaxing and endearment she ever after could be brought to answer nothing but "Bom." So it is with the quadrilateral of the Times. The bullet that gained the battle of Austerlitz, in Moravia, killed Pitt in London. The bullet that gained the battle of Solferino made Raymond a madman for life. It served him as Gen Andrew Jackson said the explosion of the Peacemaker served Col Benton. It blew out the few brains he had without destroying his life.

"Guns, bombs, bastions, batteries, bayonets, bullets," now form the everlasting staple of his talk. He has never forgotten, and he never will forget, that awful race of Solferino, in which he so far distanced all competitors as to entitle the result of the race to be recorded, as that of Eclipse was, "Raymond first and the rest nowhere."

We are told by Raymond that from this time forward "our raids are to bear directly, specifically, and effectively upon the rebel army defending the rebel capital." "They are intended to harass, embarrass, distract, divide, and isolate the army of Gen Lee — to cut all his communications, to demolish his depots, consume his materiel, burn his stores, and in every possible way weaken his power. " Is that all? Why, every army that has been beaten by the Confederates since the war had a more ample mission than that. There was not one of them that was not sent to "crush the rebellion," and that did not promise to do it. If Grant's present business be only to steal silver, rob hen roosts, maim cattle, burn corn cribs, steal baby linen, "c.--for these seem to be the objects of these raids — he has come to his level much sooner than we had hoped. We always thought him the most thorough humbug of the day; but we had supposed he was a man who would fight to the last. However, we can hardly blame him. Lee gave him such a dose in May and June that we do not wonder he has enough of it. It is no doubt safer to rob hen-roosts than to storm batteries, and if Grant prefer the former there is no disputing of tastes.

"These raids," says the quadrilateral, "are of the first importance. " Look at a map."--There it is! Only fancy the fleet-footed hero of Solferino seated at a table with a map before him, a la Napoleon le grand!--What a sublime spectacle! What a wonderful man! He looks, he studies, he traces with his finger, he becomes oracular, and thus he breaks forth, "Look at the relations of Petersburg to Richmond, and of Richmond to the great body of the Confederacy lying south of the Virginia line — and you will at once see with what terrific effect, as regards Lee's army, a body of twenty thousand cavalry can play in the region sweeping from the Appomattox round by the Lynchburg and Danville Railroad, the upper waters of the James, and the Blue Ridge Mountain, " Well, they have tried it, and ask Sheridan and Wilson how it has turned out. But hear this; "In fact, if Gen Grant can but maintain his army in fact where it now is, we do not see how it is at all possible, with the cavalry operate one was not carry on, for Lee to retain his army three months in Richmond, or anywhere on the James river."

We have several times expressed our wonder at the inattention of Lincoln to the claims of Raymond. He ought to have made him Lieutenant General, instead of Grant, If he cannot fight so well, he can run laster, and the Yankees admire a fleet-footed General, like Sheridan and Wilson. From the following occurrence, we judge his claims are rising with the rank and file of the army, and will be forced upon the President. A gentleman, in conversation the other day with some Yankee prisoners, asked them who was their best General.-- "Och!" said an Irishman of the party, "we have no Ginerals at all, at all." "No Generals! why, what is Grant?" "Och! he is no Gineral. " "McClellan?" "No Gineral." "Sherman?" "No Gineral." "Well, then, whom do you call a General?" "I call the editor of the New York Times a Gineral. Och! but don't he lay it off beautiful?"

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Solferino (Italy) (4)
Trafalgar (Arkansas, United States) (1)
Richmond (Virginia, United States) (1)
Napoleon (Ohio, United States) (1)
Moravia (Czech Republic) (1)
hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Gen Grant (7)
Raymond (4)
Gen Lee (4)
Wilson (3)
Sheridan (3)
Polly (3)
S. S. Lee (2)
Hunter (2)
Bom (2)
Sherman (1)
Pope (1)
Pitt (1)
Nelson (1)
Napoleon (1)
McClellan (1)
Lincoln (1)
Kantz (1)
Gen Andrew Jackson (1)
Benton (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
October 1st (1)
May (1)
3rd (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: