The War news.
The most interesting news of the day is brought us by the Northern
papers, and is the announcement that Butler
's much-talked-of Dutch Gap canal
has at length been completed.
The importance of this news remains to be seen.
If it is a success; that is, if it admits the passage through it of the Yankee
fleet, it is an important and useful work to the enemy, inasmuch as it puts them about six miles nearer the city by water than they would be had they been obliged to make the trip around Farrar
's island, which is the name of the peninsula of which Dutch gap
was the isthmus.
If it proves unnavigable to monitors and gunboats, the whole vast undertaking is so much time and labor lost.
But even should it float the monitors comfortably, it is yet to be tested whether our batteries on the south side of James river
and west of the gap will not effectually blockade its navigation.
We think they will.
tell us the canal has fifteen feet of water in it at high tide.--Its length is five hundred and sixty feet; its width, forty yards. The cut through the ridge of the isthmus, at its highest point, to the water line is fifty-nine feet. The work was begun on the 10th of August; and the western end, which had been left untouched till the rest of the canal was finished, to protect the laborers against our batteries, was blown out last Sunday--the first day of this year.
The Yankee nation are making a great glorification over the completion of this work, and volumes of praise are being lavished on Butler
for originating the canal scheme and prosecuting it to a successful conclusion.
It is, as we have said, only so far successful that the gap has been out through and the out filled with water.
It advancing the enemy in the siege of Richmond
is another matter.
Even should the monitors sail through, it may be found that they have not improved their location over much.
We may, however, expect them to attempt the excursion at an early day.
One of the most remarkable things about the completion of this canal is, to us, the fact that it should be done right under our noses, (Dutch gap
being, as the crow flies, only twelve miles from Richmond
,) and yet we heard not one word of it until the news was brought to us from New York.
Very heavy cannonading was heard in the direction of the Dutch Gap canal
We presume the firing from our batteries will be kept up continually now, and may be expected to be tremendous whenever the first monitor shall show its nose in the canal.
Except the firing just mentioned, the usual quiet prevailed on the lines yesterday.
From the South.
There is nothing from the South
except that General Hardee
telegraphs that Sherman
is in front of Hardeeville
, but has not yet made any demonstration on that point.