The army of the Potomac withdrew from before the works of the rebels on Mine Run, General Meade being convinced that they could not be taken without a great sacrifice of life. A soldier, writing from Kelleysville, on December fourth, gives the following account of the retrograde movement: “Since joining the regiment I have had very tough work, marching great distances in a short space of time, besides living on short rations. We crossed the Rapidan at Ely's Ford, marching through the battle-field of Chancellorsville and the Wilderness, to within six miles of Orange Court-House, where we halted. Our impressions were, that we would reach Gordonsville before any serious opposition would be shown, but were mightily mistaken. The army skirmished with the rebels from the time we crossed the Rapidan until we halted, and through such a perfect wilderness as to be almost indescribable — the road, the only place where man or beast could walk, with both sides covered with dense woods, overrun with underbrush.  So you can readily imagine what a place for troops to advance in line of battle, and manoeuvre for instant action. Yet it was done, and with a hearty good will, for the impression animated the whole army we would give the rebels a sound whipping, as we were on their flank; but alas! they got wind of it, and formed a line of battle on the high ridge of hills on the opposite side of Mine Run. We would have cleared them out from there, but the whole of our army did not arrive in time. Night came on, and they improved the time by fortifying. When morning came, they had one of the most formidable works in view I ever saw. The creek, or run, was crammed with felled trees, to break our ranks when advancing in line, and then came immense breastworks with abattis in front, making it an impossibility to make a charge over. Yet that morning the whole line had orders to take off knapsacks and overcoats, and make the attack, or rather attempt it. When all was ready, and going on the advance, the order was countermanded, and with it came many light hearts, as we knew it was impossible to make any impression on what we saw before us, although we were willing to attempt it. We lay all that day, and the next until evening, when we picked up our traps, and made a splendid retrograde movement. To be sure, the army suffered a little in killed and wounded, but nothing in comparison to what it would have been if we had fought them. One of the men in my company was shot in the breast while skirmishing. We are now near Kelly's Ford, and have arrived at the conclusion that General Meade acted wisely in not giving battle, for he would have been repulsed, and that would not do, when things looked so bright in the West.”
General Braxton Bragg issued a general order from his headquarters at Dalton, Ga., transferring the command of the rebel forces to Lieutenant-General Hardee who, on assuming the position announced, in orders, that “there was no cause for discouragement. The overwhelming numbers of the enemy forced us back from Missionary Ridge; but the army is still intact and in good heart; our losses were small, and were rapidly replaced. The country is looking to you with painful interest. I feel I can rely upon you. The weak need to be cheered by the constant successes of the victors of Shiloh, Perryville, Murfreesboro, and Chickamauga, and require such stimulant to sustain their courage and resolution. Let the past take care of itself. We care more to secure the future.”
A large body of rebels, under the command of Chalmers and Forrest, made three desperate charges on a division of National cavalry, stationed at the Wolf River Bridge, Tenn., but were finally repulsed with heavy loss. The National troops were commanded by Colonel Hatch's cavalry division, which suffered severely.
General Longstreet raised the siege of Knoxville, and fell back to Morristown, Tenn., in consequence of the approach of heavy reinforcements to General Burnside, under General Granger, as well as the great victory around Chattanooga.--(Doc. 19.)
Major-General R. C. Schenck relinquished the command of the Middle Department, and was succeeded by Brigadier-General Lockwood.--Stephen D. Lee, Major-General in the rebel service, sent the following report from his headquarters, at Holly Springs, Miss., to General Joseph E. Johnston: “Chased enemy's cavalry, eight hundred strong, from Ripley into Pocahontas, on the first. The enemy concentrated at Pocahontas, and evacuated Salisbury on the second. Two miles of railroad destroyed at Salisbury. Forrest passed safely over. Routed and drove across into Wolf River, at Moscow, two regiments of the enemy's cavalry, killing, wounding, and drowning about one hundred and seventy-five, capturing forty prisoners, and forty horses, and killing about one hundred horses.”
A body of rebel cavalry, with a few pieces of artillery, crossed the Rapidan, and made a demonstration in front of the National lines. After a brief skirmish, it was discovered that the rebels wished to reestablish signal-stations on three peaks overlooking the section of country occupied by the Union army. This was successfully accomplished, and quiet restored.--A train, on the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, was attacked by a party of guerrillas, at a point two miles east of Bealton Station.--Georgetown, S. C., was destroyed by fire this night.
Major-General W. T. Sherman and staff; accompanied by Brigadier-General Wilson, arrived at General Burnside's headquarters, at Knoxville, Tenn., at noon to-day.--A most successful reconnaissance was made to Madison Court-House, Va., by four squadrons of the First New York Dragoons, under Major Scott,  demonstrating that no rebel force existed in that quarter. At James City a few rebels, who fled on the approach of the Nationals, were seen. On Thoroughfare Mountain, the rebel signal-station was found in the possession of some thirty or more cavalry, who at once beat a hasty retreat. They were pursued some distance by Major Scott's men, but without capture. It was found to be a good position for its past uses, as well as in turn to be used against them, as from it the position of nearly the whole rebel army can be seen. The destruction was made as complete as possible.--the National iron-clad Weehawken, during a terrific storm, sunk at her anchorage at the entrance of Charleston harbor, S. C., carrying down with her four engineers and twenty-six of her crew.--the merchant steamer Chesapeake, commanded by Captain Willets, was seized by a party of rebels, who had taken passage in her, while on her way from New York to Portand, Maine. The pirates assaulted the crew, killed the engineer, and wounded two other officers, and, after landing the passengers at Partridge Island, ran away with the vessel.
Major-General Foster, from his headquarters at Tazewell, Tenn., sent the following to the National War Department: “Longstreet is on a full retreat up the valley. Your orders about following with cavalry, shall be carried out. My division of cavalry attacked the enemy's cavalry in one of the passes of Clinch Mountains, yesterday P. M., and are pushing them vigorously. Couriers from Knoxville arrived last night. The road is clear. Sherman arrived here yesterday.”
President Lincoln issued the following recommendation for prayer and thanksgiving, for the defeat of the rebels under General Longstreet: “Reliable information having been received that the insurgent force is retreating from East-Tennessee, under circumstances rendering it probable that the Union forces cannot hereafter be dislodged from that important position, and esteeming this to be of high national consequence, I recommend that all loyal people do, on receipt of this information, assemble at their places of worship, and render special homage and gratitude to Almighty God for this great advancement of the national cause.” --A debate on the question of the employment of substitutes in the Southern army was held in the rebel Congress.--the steamer Von Phul, on a trip from New Orleans to St. Louis, was fired into at a point about eight miles above Bayou Sara, and seriously damaged.--Major-General John A. Logan assumed command of the Fifteenth army corps, at Bridgeport, Ala.--the British steamer Ceres was captured off the port of Wilmington, North-Carolina.
Full and enthusiastic meetings were held in various portions of Indiana. At the capital of the State, General Carrington made a strategical speech, illustrated by maps and diagrams, showing how the rebels could be circumvented.--Jefferson Davis sent a message to the rebel Congress, which was received and read in both houses.--(Doc. 21.)
A brisk cannonade between Fort Moultrie and Battery Gregg, in Charleston harbor, was carried on this day. The firing on Fort Sumter was moderated.--in a speech before the rebel Congress, this day, Mr. Foote expressed great indignation at the course pursued by President Davis. “When Pemberton dishonorably surrendered Vicksburgh to the enemy, the President made him his companion, and carried him to General Bragg's army, when, as he rode along, soldiers were heard to say: ‘There goes the traitor who delivered us over at Vicksburgh.’ The President never visited the army without doing it injury; never yet that it was not followed by disaster. He was instrumental in the Gettysburgh affair. He instructed Bragg at Murfreesboro. He has opened Georgia to one hundred thousand of the enemy's troops, and laid South-Carolina liable to destruction. I charge him with having almost ruined the country, and will meet his champion anywhere to discuss it. Would to God he would never visit the army again!” . . . Mr. Foote also referred to abuses in the commissory department. A certain commissary-general, who was a curse to our country, is invested with authority to control the matter of subsistence. This monster, Northrop, has stealthily placed our government in the attitude charged by the enemy, and has attempted to starve the prisoners in our hands! Meats were furnished the prisoners very irregularly, and in a meagre manner. For twelve days the supply was inadequate, and for eight days they had none at all! “The commissary-general,” says Mr. Foote, “was a pepper-doctor down in Charleston, and looked like a vegetarian, and actually made an elaborate report to the Secretary of War, showing  that for the subsistence of a human Yankee carcass vegetable diet was the most proper! For the honor of the country, this Northrop should be ejected at once.”
President Lincoln, in his Message to Congress, appended his Proclamation of Amnesty.--(Doc. 32.)
The following is an account of an affair that took place to-day, near Great Western Furnace, Stuart County, Tenn., about twelve miles from Canton, Ky.: “The guerrilla, Colonel Martin, who lately robbed the citizens in that section of nearly all they possessed, passed through Golden Pond, Tenn., with his gang, taking horses, and plundering indiscriminately. The citizens of the neighborhood organized a squad of fifteen men, composed principally of the late Eighth Kentucky cavalry, headed by John Martin and F. M. Oakley, and started in pursuit of the guerrillas. They came upon them about midnight, in camp, eating a supper furnished them by one Dawsy Griffin. The citizens demanded a surrender, which was refused by the rebel leader, and the order was given by Martin to charge upon them, which was done in a handsome manner, resulting in a complete rout, and the capture of all their arms, horses, clothing, camp equipage, and two contrabands. Three of the rebels were killed on the spot.” --the National House of Representatives unanimously passed a vote of thanks to General U. S. Grant and his army, and ordered that a medal be struck in his honor, in the name of the people of the United States.
President Lincoln sent the subjoined congratulatory despatch to Major-General Grant: “Understanding that your lodgment at Chattanooga and Knoxville is now secure, I wish to tender you, and all under your command, my more than thanks — my profoundest gratitude for the skill, courage, and perseverance with which you and they, over so great difficulties, have effected that important object. God bless you all!” This was immediately published to the armies under the command of General Grant.
President Lincoln granted a pardon exempting E. W. Gantt, of Arkansas, from the penalty of treason, which he incurred by accepting and exercising the office of Brigadier-General in the service of the rebels. The pardon also reinstated General Gantt in all his rights of property, excepting those relating to slaves.--the Marine Brigade, under the Command of General Ellet, and a portion of Colonel Gresham's command, returned to Natchez from an unsuccessful expedition after the rebels under Wirt Adams, who had mounted a battery on Ellis's Cliff.--the English steamer Minna, while attempting to evade the blockade of Charleston, S. C., was captured by the United States gunboat Circassian.
Major-General Grant, from his headquarters at Chattanooga, Tenn., issued the following congratulatory order to his army: “The General commanding takes this opportunity of returning his sincere thanks and congratulations to the brave armies of the Cumberland, the Ohio, the Tennessee, and their comrades from the Potomac, for the recent splendid and decisive successes achieved over the enemy. In a short time you have recovered from him the control of the Tennessee River from Bridgeport to Knoxville. You dislodged him from his great stronghold upon Lookout Mountain, drove him from Chattanooga Valley, wrested from his determined grasp the possession of Missionary Ridge, repelled with heavy loss to him his repeated assaults upon Knoxville, forcing him to raise the siege there, driving him at all points, utterly routed and discomfited, beyond the limits of the State. By your noble heroism and determined courage, you have most effectually defeated the plans of the enemy for regaining the possession of the States of Kentucky and Tennessee. You have secured positions from which no rebellious power can drive or dislodge you. For all this the General commanding thanks you collectively and individually. The loyal people of the United States thank and bless you. Their hopes and prayers for your success against this unholy rebellion are with you daily. Their faith in you will not be in vain. Their hopes will not be blasted. Their prayers to Almighty God will be answered. You will yet go to other fields of strife; and with the invincible bravery and unflinching loyalty to justice and right, which have characterized you in the past, you will prove that no enemy can withstand you, and that no defences, however formidable, can check your onward march.”
General Gillmore again shelled Charleston, S. C., throwing a number of missiles into different parts of the city. The rebel batteries opened fire, and a heavy bombardment ensued for several hours.--the steamers Ticonderoga, Ella,  and Annie, left Boston, Mass., in pursuit of the Chesapeake.--the new volunteer fund of New York City reached seven hundred and fifty thousand dollars.
The annual report of the rebel Secretary of War was made public. He refers to the operations of the army in its several departments, and says that the campaign in Mississippi was certainly disastrous. It is difficult to resist the impression that its disasters were not inevitable. That a court of inquiry, to investigate the whole campaign, met in Atlanta in September, but in consequence of the vicinity of the enemy, requiring the presence of witnesses and judges at other points, it has been temporarily suspended. It is expected soon to reassemble. A deficiency of resource in men and provisions, rather than reverses in battle, caused the withdrawal of the army to Middle Tennessee. He alludes to desertion, straggling, and absenteeism, and says that the effective force of the army is but little over half or two thirds of the men whose names are on the muster-rolls. He recommends the repeal of the substitute and exemption provisions, and that all having substitutes be put back into the field, and that the privileges which Congress granted to put in substitutes can be regularly and constitutionally abrogated by the same power. He says that no compact was entered into between the government and the person furnishing a substitute, as has been alleged, but only a privilege which government accorded. Instead of complaining of such abrogation, the person ought to feel gratified at what has heretofore been allowed him. He recommends an abridgment of exemptions and the conscription of them all, making details according to the wants of society at home. He says that the three years men, when their terms expire, cannot be finally discharged, and should be retained, allowing them to choose the existing company under its present organization in the same arm of the service. He recommends the consolidation of such companies and regiments as are reduced below a certain complement. He pays a glowing tribute to the heroism, endurance, and unfaltering devotion of the soldier, and of the lamented dead who yielded their lives as sacrifices upon the altar of liberty, and closes by saying that our very reverses, showing a united and determined endurance of every thing for independence, must convince the enemy of the futility of his efforts to subdue us.--Richmond Examiner.
The steamboat Brazil, while passing below Rodney, Miss., was fired upon by rebels on shore. Three women and one man were killed.
Robert Ould, the rebel Commissioner of Exchange, addressed the following official letter to Brigadier-General Meredith, the agent of the National Government: “As the assent of the confederate government to the transmission, by your authorities and people, of food and clothing to the prisoners at Richmond and elsewhere, has been the subject of so much misconstruction and misrepresentation, and has been made the occasion of so much vilification and abuse, I am directed to inform you that no more will be allowed to be delivered at City Point. The clothing and provisions already received will be devoted to the use of your prisoners. When that supply is exhausted, they will receive the same rations as our soldiers in the field.”
Major-General Burnside, in obedience to orders from the War Department, resigned the command of the army of the Ohio to Major-General John G. Foster.--the rebel government salt-works on West-Bay, Florida, were destroyed by an expedition from the United States armed vessels Restless and Bloomer. The government works were three quarters of a mile square, and one hundred and ninety-nine salt-works belonging to companies and private individuals, with five hundred and seven boilers, kettles, etc., the whole worth three millions of dollars.
General Scammon attacked General Echols at Lewisburgh, Va., routing him effectually, killing and wounding quite a number of the rebels, and capturing many prisoners. General Kelley's Despatch.
Major-General Grant, from his headquarters at Chattanooga, Tenn., issued general orders concerning the property of secessionists in his department. Corps commanders were directed to immediately seize, or cause to be seized, all county records and documents showing titles and claims to property within the revolted States, in their respective districts, and to hold the same until they could be delivered to an authorized tax commissioner of the United States.
Between two and three o'clock this afternoon, the forces of Longstreet turned upon and attacked the pursuing column of cavalry under General Shackleford. The line of battle was formed at Bean Station, Tenn., on the  Cumberland Gap and Morristown road; and a fight ensued which continued until nightfall, when the rebels succeeded in driving the Nationals about half a mile. Colonels Wolford, Graham, Foster, and others were engaged. The musketry fire was very heavy. The whole movement was made with a well-contrived plan to cut off and capture General Shackleford and command; and a heavy force of rebel cavalry moved down the left bank of the Holston River, with the intention of crossing at Kelly's Ford and coming in his rear. This portion of the programme was checked by General Ferrero, who sent the brigade of General Humphrey to hold the ford. The rebels fired across the river with artillery upon the brigade, but with little effect.--(Doc. 36.)
The United States bark Roebuck captured a small sloop-boat called the Gopher, containing two men, sixteen bags of salt, and one box of notions, off Indian River, Florida.--Governor Thomas E. Bramlette, of Kentucky, addressed a letter to Captain Edward Cahill, recruiting colored troops, questioning his right to recruit in that State.--Colonel Watkins, commanding the Kentucky brigade, returned to Chattanooga, Tenn., from a cavalry reconnoissance as far as La Fayette. He captured a rebel signal station, and six officers and forty privates. The rest of the large force of rebels fled.
An expedition sent out by General Wistar from Yorktown to Charles City Court-House, Va., under the command of Colonel R. M. West, returned to Williamsburgh, Va., having been successful in the accomplishment of its object.--(Doc, 26.)
President Lincoln's Amnesty Proclamation was under consideration in rebel Congress. Mr. Foote presented the following preamble and resolution:
Whereas a copy of the truly characteristic proclamation of amnesty recently issued by the imbecile and unprincipled usurper who now sits enthroned upon the ruins of constitutional liberty in Washington City, has been received and read by the members of this House; now, in token of what is solemnly believed to be the most undivided sentiment of the people of the confederate States:Be it resolved, That there never has been a day or an hour when the people of the confederate States were more inflexibly resolved than they are at the present time, never to relinquish the struggle of arms in which they are engaged, until that liberty and independence for which they have been so earnestly contending shall have been at least achieved, and made sure and steadfast beyond even the probability of a future danger; and that, in spite of the reverses which have lately befallen our armies in several quarters, and cold and selfish indifference to our sufferings thus far, for the most part evinced in the action of foreign powers, the eleven millions of enlightened freemen now battling heroically for all that can make existence desirable, are fully prepared, alike in spirit and in resources, to encounter dangers far greater than those which they have heretofore bravely met, and to submit to far greater sacrifices than those which they have heretofore so cheerfully encountered, in preference to holding any further political connection with a government and people who have notoriously proven themselves contemptuously regardless of all the rights and privileges which belong to a state of civil freedom, as well as of all the most sacred usages of civilized war.Mr. Miles regretted that the gentleman from Tennessee had introduced such a resolution. The true and only treatment which that miserable and contemptible despot, Lincoln, should receive at the hands of this house was silent and unmitigated contempt. This resolution would appear to dignify a paper emanating from that wretched and detestable abortion, whose contemptible emptiness and folly would only receive the ridicule of the civilized world. He moved to lay the subject on the table. Mr. Foote was willing that the preamble and resolution should be tabled, with the understanding that it would indicate the unqualified contempt of the House for Abraham Lincoln and his message and proclamation alluded to. Mr. Miles said there would be no misunderstanding about that. The motion was unanimously adopted. Similar resolutions, offered by Mr. Miller of Virginia, went the same way.
There were yesterday in the Libby Prison and its dependencies at Richmond, Va., over ten thousand abolition captives. In this number are included nine hundred and eighty-three commissioned officers, domiciled at the Libby under the immediate supervision of Major Thomas P. Turner. By the record it appears that nine were received on the fourteenth instant. Twelve died the same day. The arrivals for several day's past have not been very numerous. On last Friday  night, Captain Anderson, of the Fifty-first Indiana cavalry, (Streight's command,) Lieutenant Skelton, of the Nineteenth Iowa regiment, (a redheaded, bullet-eyed, pestilential abolitionist,) escaped from the hospital of the Libby Prison by bribing the sentinel, one Mack, a member of the Tenth Virginia battalion of heavy artillery. This person was purchased for four hundred dollars.--Richmond Examiner.
This night, about eight o'clock, Rosser's brigade, of Stuart's rebel cavalry, came upon the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, from the south, near Sangster's Station, Va., and destroyed two bridges over Pope's Run.--(Doc. 115.)
Authentic information having been received that Acting Masters John Y. Beall and Edward McGuire, together with fifteen men, all belonging to the confederate States navy, are now in close confinement in irons at Fort McHenry, to be tried as pirates, our efficient and energetic Agent of Exchange, Judge Ould, notified General Meredith that Lieutenant Commander Edward P. Williams and Ensign Benjamin H. Porter and fifteen seamen, now Yankee prisoners in our hands, have been placed in close confinement and irons, and will be held as hostages for the proper treatment of our men.--Richmond Enquirer.
A list of steamers destroyed on the Mississippi River since the beginning of the war, was made public. Over one hundred and seventy-five were burned or sunk.
A fire broke out this evening in the hospital of the One Hundred and Forty-eighth New York regiment at Yorktown,Va., and in a few moments the building was all on fire, and as there were no engines or water near, it was impossible to subdue it. The Government bakery also took fire, and communicated it to the Arsenal. For several hours, the loaded shell stored within exploded, until the magazine was reached, when a terrific explosion took place, scattering the building and shell in every direction. The loss was estimated at one million dollars.--Major-General Buford, commanding a division in the cavalry corps of the army of the Potomac, died at Washington, D. C.--the steamer Chesapeake was recaptured in Mud Cove, Sambro Harbor, Nova Scotia, by the National steamer Ella and Anna, under the command of Lieutenant Commander John F. Nichols.
From his headquarters at Memphis, Tenn., General Hurlbut issued the following general order: “The recent affair at Moscow, Tenn., has demonstrated the fact that colored troops, properly disciplined and commanded, can and will fight well, and the General commanding deems it to be due to the officers and men of the Second regiment West-Tennessee infantry of African descent, thus publicly to return his personal thanks for their gallant and successful defence of the important position to which they had been assigned, and for the manner in which they have vindicated the wisdom of the Government in elevating the rank and file of these regiments to the position of freemen and soldiers.”
The Richmond Enquirer, in an article on the exchange of prisoners, held the following language: “The Yankees are not going to send their negro troops in the field: they know as well as we do that no reliance can be placed upon them; but as depot-guards, prison-guards, etc., they will relieve their white troops. This is the use that will be made of them. Should they be sent to the field, and be put in battle, none will be taken prisoners-our troops understand what to do in such cases.”
President Lincoln sent a message to the Congress of the United States, communicating a letter addressed to him from a committee of gentlemen, representing the Freedmen's Aid Societies of Boston, New York, Philadelphia, and Cincinnati, in relation to the freedmen under the proclamation of emancipation.--the United States bark Roebuck captured off the mouth of Indian River, Florida, the English schooner Ringdove, twenty-three tons burden, of and from Nassau, with a crew of five men. Her cargo consisted of one hundred and ninety bales of salt, three bags of coffee, two half chests of tea, and three barrels of whisky. When first discovered, she attempted to escape, but on being fired at, ran aground on the bar.
For several days past the detectives at Richmond, Va., have been on the hunt for parties who are either suspected of stealing the clothing sent by the Yankee Government for the prisoners now in our hands, or receiving the same, knowing it to have been stolen. Several soldiers, wearing the confederate uniform, have lately been seen with blankets branded “U. S.,” and in some cases, shoes, with the Yankee mark on them, have been sold to citizens at uncommonly low figures by some of the guards of the prisons. Several individuals have been arrested on the  above charge.--Richmond Examiner, December 19.
Colonel Carter, of the First rebel Virginia cavalry, with six other persons, was captured at Upperville, Va., by a detachment of the Twenty-second Pennsylvania cavalry.--an entire company, belonging to the Third North-Carolina rebel cavalry, was captured near Washington, N. C., by a party of the Fiftieth Pennsylvania regiment, commanded by Captain Blakely. Yesterday, at sunset, the Nationals left Washington, and after a march of twenty-four miles, came upon the enemy's camp. The night was dark and rainy, rendering it possible for the troops to come upon the rebels unheard, and a complete surprise was consequently effected, the enemy being taken in their tents asleep, without the firing of a gun. The number taken was thirty-four, with their horses, equipments, and arms. The surprising party was led by Mr. Henn, who acted as guide, and who previously had been of great use upon cavalry expeditions. On this occasion he entered the rebel camp alone in advance of the attack, and reconnoitred the enemy's position.--the rebel partisan Standwaite, with a portion of his force, made an attack upon the outposts of Fort Gibson, Ark., but was repulsed, and compelled to retreat across the Arkansas River.--A body of Stuart's cavalry made a descent at eight o'clock this night upon company I, of the One Hundred and Fifty-fifth New York regiment, stationed at Sangster's, three miles west of Fairfax Station, Va., slightly wounding one man, capturing four, and burning the tents belonging to the company. The attack was unexpected, but, nevertheless, the guard made a gallant defence. On being charged upon by the enemy, they withdrew behind their encampment, pouring in repeated volleys upon the rebels, and finally compelling them to retire.
The Richmond Despatch of this day contained the following:
We can assure such members of the confederate Congress as feel disposed at this decisive crisis in the national affairs to give undue prominence to querulous complaints and denunciations of the government, that they do not represent the public sentiment of the country — nay, so far from that, they are arousing in the minds of a people whose salvation depends upon the harmony and cooperation of all the public servants, deep and stern dissatisfaction. At this solemn moment, when every patriot should be willing to postpone all minor differences to a period when the enemy shall not be thundering at the gates, the country has a right to demand that the voice of faction shall be hushed, and that every man shall smother his private griefs, and give his heart and hand to the common salvation. We are all embarked in the same vessel, we are all tossing upon the same stormy sea, and, in the event of shipwreck, none has as much to lose as the officers of the ship, and especially the man whom we have ourselves called to the quarterdeck, and who has every conceivable motive to do the utmost for our preservation that human wisdom and energy can accomplish. Would to heaven that, for a time at least, till this hour of imminent peril be passed, the voice of dissension and discord could be hushed, and the counsels of patriotism and prudence govern the pulsations of every heart, and the utterance of every lip. We can assure Congress, that nothing so disheartens the true friends of the country as the fault-finding abuse heaped upon the public servants, at a time when we should all be engaged in beating back the public enemy. It would be mournful enough that our cause should be borne down by our vile and dastardly foes, but a far deeper humiliation, an unspeakable disgrace, that it should perish by our own hands. But the people will not let it perish either by the hands of indiscreet friends or open foes, and we warn them both to stand clear of an avalanche which will inevitably fall upon their own heads.
Captain Leeper, commanding National scouts in South-East Missouri, overtook three guerrillas, belonging to Reeve's band, near Black River, and succeeded in killing the entire party.
A fight took place at Fort Gibson, between a party of guerrillas, under Quantrell, and six hundred National troops, belonging to the Indian brigade, commanded by Colonel Phillips. The engagement lasted five hours, and resulted in the complete defeat of the guerrillas.
The chaplains of General Lee's army held a meeting at Orange Court-House, Va., to-day. Most interesting reports were made, showing a high state of religious feeling throughout the army. The great success of the army is due to the religious element which reaches every corner of it; whilst, on the other hand, I am very much disposed to fear, from what I have been told by officers who have served in the army of Tennessee,  that the lack of success of that army is due, in a large measure, to the want of religious influence upon the troops.--Cor. Richmond Dispatch.
In the Virginia House of Delegates, Mr. Hutcheson offered a series of resolutions deprecating the Amnesty Proclamation of President Lincoln as “degrading to freemen, that, having calmly counted the cost and weight, the dangers and difficulties, necessary for the achievement of the rights and independence they covet, the people of the Old Dominion spurn with contempt the proffered pardon and amnesty.” --five military executions took place in the respective divisions to which they belonged, in the army of the Potomac.--Commodore Gershom J. Van brunt, of the United States navy, died at Dedham, Mass.
Mrs. Patterson Allan, charged with carrying on a treasonable correspondence with persons in the North, was arraigned before Commissioner Watson, at Richmond, Va. The letter which she was charged with writing, was inclosed in a box, and directed to Rev. Morgan Dix; both were then placed in a buff envelope, and addressed to Miss H. Harris, New York.--Captain George Washington Alexander, commandant at Castle Thunder, was relieved from command at that point, and confined to his quarters, under arrest, charged with malfeasance in office. It was alleged that he extorted large sums of money from prisoners confined in that institution, by promising to use his influence for their benefit, and in some cases permitting the prisoners to go at large, upon paying him large sums of money. He was also charged with trading largely in greenbacks.--Colonel A. D. Streight, and his Adjutant, Lieutenant Reed, in attempting to escape from Libby Prison, at Richmond, Va., were detected, and “put in the dungeon.” --Major-General Grant arrived at Nashville, Tenn.
The Third Wisconsin cavalry returned to Fort Smith, Ark., from a successful reconnoissance southward. They were within five miles of Red River, but finding that the rebels had changed position since last advices, they were unable to proceed further. Their return was a constant skirmish for over one hundred miles, strong bodies of the enemy being posted at all the cross-roads to intercept them. They, however, cut their way through. In some places they evaded the enemy by taking blind mountain-passes. Their loss was small.--Mrs. Anne Johnston, of Cincinnati, was tried at Nashville, Tenn., before the Military Committee, for acting as a rebel spy, and smuggling saddles and harness from Cincinnati into the rebel lines. The articles were packed in barrels, purporting to contain bacon, for the shipment of which permits had been regularly obtained.--the schooner Fox, tender to the United States flag-ship San Jacinto, East-Gulf squadron, destroyed in the Suwanee River, Florida, a rebel steamer, supposed to be the Little Leila, formerly the Paw-Paw, and before the Flushing. She was set fire to by a boat's crew belonging to the Fox.--(Doc. 23.)
The bark Tuscaloosa, formerly the Conrad, of Philadelphia, captured by the Alabama, was seized at St. Simon's Bay, Cape of Good Hope, by British officers, upon an alleged violation of British laws.
A fight occurred at Fayette, sixteen miles from Rodney, Miss., between a party of Nationals, belonging to General Ellet's Marine Brigade, under the command of Colonel Curry, and about an equal number of rebels, attached to the forces under General Wirt Adams. After a brief skirmish, the rebels fled, leaving ten of their number in the hands of the Nationals.--the bark Saxon arrived at New York last night, in charge of Acting Master E. S. Keyser. She was captured by the gunboat Vanderbilt, on the twenty-ninth of October, on the west coast of Africa, four hundred miles north of the Cape of Good Hope, and had on board part of the cargo of the bark Conrad which vessel was captured by the pirate Alabama, and afterward converted into the pirate Tuscaloosa.--Brigadier-General Averill, arrived at Edray, Va., having successfully accomplished his expedition to cut the Virginia and Tennessee Railroad.--(Doc. 25.)
A squad of forty men, under Major White, of the First regiment of confederate cavalry, made a dash into Cleveland, Tenn., driving in the National pickets, killing one, wounding several, and capturing six, besides twelve horses, and some small-arms.--John Kelly was killed by a party of guerrillas, on the Arkansas shore of the Mississippi River, opposite Memphis, Tenn.--General Michael Corcoran died at Fairfax Court-House, Va., from injuries received from a fall from his horse.
General Joseph E. Johnston, in command of the rebel department of Mississippi, relinquished it, by order of Jefferson Davis, to Lieutenant  General Polk, and issued farewell orders, as follows:
Having felt great pride in this army, the undersigned leaves it with much regret. He assures his brave comrades of his full appreciation of the high soldierly qualities they have exhibited. Harmony of opinion and purpose has existed in all ranks. Amid events tending to produce gloom and despondency, they have presented the rare spectacle of the constant improvement of all arms in efficiency and discipline. He offers them his best wishes for their future success. In leaving this command, it is a source of great satisfaction to him that it devolves upon the distinguished General chosen for it by the President-one who, on each of so many bloody battle-fields, has proved himself worthy of such troops as constitute this command.
A bill, prohibiting dealing in the currency of the United States, was passed in the rebel Congress: “Any person violating the provisions of the act was subject to indictment and prosecution in the confederate court holden for the district within which the offence was committed, and should, upon conviction, forfeit the amount so bought, sold, circulated, or used, or a sum equal thereto, and be moreover subject to a fine of not more than twenty thousand dollars, nor less than five hundred, and be imprisoned not less than three months, nor more than three years, at the discretion of the court; and it was declared the duty of the judges of the several confederate courts to give the act specially in charge to the grand-jury: Provided, that the purchase of postage-stamps should not be considered a violation of the act.”
The rebel forces, under General Longstreet, still remained in the neighborhood of Rutledge and Morristown, Tenn. “General Longstreet was unable to follow up his advantage in consequence of the large number of bare-footed men in his command. The weather was extremely cold, and the mountains covered with snow.”
A party belonging to the rebel Colonel Harrison's guerrilla band, headed by James Cavalier, entered Omega, La., and after capturing twelve or fourteen negroes, proceeded to murder them in cold blood, after which they hurried away upon mules captured in the town.--in discussing the conscription proposed by the rebel Congress, the Raleigh Progress says:
There is not another man to spare from the farms or other industrial pursuits of the country, and a further draft on this class will be fraught with the most disastrous consequences. If more men are wanted in the line, let the thousands of able-bodied men already in the pay of the government be placed there, and the drones and non-producers who insult honest toil by their constant swagger, and who have been shielded by the corruptions of office-holders since the war commenced, be gathered up and compelled to fight for that liberty for which they ever profess to be so ready to pour out their precious blood. Congress, we fear, is disposed to run into extremes, especially those members whose States are largely or entirely in the hands of the enemy. If this war is to be fought out to the last man and the last dollar, if we are really battling for independence, we must husband our resources. We must have men to fight, and we must have something to feed them on. Beware of destroying the seed-corn.
The Yankees made a raid on Luray, Va., and burned P. B. Borst's large tannery, the old Baptist Church, and Mr. Booton's workshop; broke open all the stores, and robbed them of all their goods, and what they could not take off, they distributed among the negroes. They also broke open the meat-houses, and stole, carried away, and destroyed nearly all the pork and bacon in the place, besides killing nearly all the chickens they could find. They also burnt the tannery of William R. Barbee, about six miles east of Luray.--Richmond Dispatch.
Lieutenant-General Leonidas Polk, assuming command of the rebel army in Mississipppi, issued an order at Meridian, in which he recognizes the defeats and discouragements the confederate cause has sustained of late, but seeks to stimulate his troops to fresh efforts, by assuring them that there is still, in the South, ample material for a continued and successful prosecution of the war. “The vigorous employment of our own resources,” he closed by saying, “with unity, harmony, and an unflinching determination to be true cannot, under God, but crown our efforts with triumphant success.”
Yesterday a foraging party was sent out from the Union camp at Tullahoma, Tenn., under the command of Lieutenant Porter, of the Twenty-seventh Indiana volunteer infantry. There was a guard of the Fourth Tennessee cavalry, and a detail from the battery, to guard and load forage. They went to Lincoln County, loaded up, and were on the way to camp  for the night. The train was divided--one half under Sergeant James, of the battery, was in camp about one mile ahead; Lieutenant Porter, with the rear part of the train, was on his way to the same place. There was one wagon considerably ahead of the others, accompanied by George Jacobs, driver; John Wesley Drought and Newell Orcutt, foragers; and James W. Foley, battery wagon-master — when they were surprised by four guerrillas, and told to surrender or they would blow their brains out. They being unarmed, could make no successful resistance. Lieutenant Porter then came riding up, when he was seized also. They were then taken through the woods some eight miles, and halted to camp, as the guerrillas said, for the night. They then tied their hands behind their backs, asked if they were ready, and fired, when all fell except the Lieutenant, who being uninjured, ran. The bodies were then dragged to the end of the bluff and thrown into Elk River. Drought was killed instantly. His body floated down and lodged on a tree-top. Jacobs was only wounded in the arm and was drowned. Orcutt was shot through the bowels, and managed to get out of the river, but died next day. Foley having loosed his hands, reached shore, but being severely wounded in the groin, lay near the river all night, where he was found next day by a citizen and properly cared for.--the schooner Fox captured the British schooner Edward, from Havana, off the Suwanee River, while endeavoring to run the blockade.--the United States steamer Sunflower, off Tampa Bay, Florida, captured the rebel sloop Hancock.
A battle took place near Bolivar, Tenn., between a party of rebel raiders belonging to the command of General Forrest, and five hundred of the Seventh Illinois cavalry, under Colonel Edward Prince, who had been sent out to scout and patrol the crossings on the Mississippi Central Railroad. Finding himself overpowered by numbers, Colonel Prince fell back on Summerville, with a loss of three killed and eight wounded. (Doc. 50.)
The rebel House of Representatives, by a vote of four to one, resolved that a “person otherwise liable to military duty shall no longer be exempt by reason of having provided a substitute. It declared also that the substitute should not be discharged, and rejected a proposition to refund to the principal any portion of the money paid for his substitute.” --the enlistment of colored troops at Nashville, Tenn., continued with great success.--the ship Martaban, from Moulmein to Singapore, was captured and destroyed by the rebel privateer Alabama.
Colonel Prince again advanced upon the rebel forces under Forrest, and attacked them, but in a few moments discovered that he was surrounded on all sides. He did not surrender, but after fighting for three hours, with terrible loss, cut his way out, and carried most of his command safely into La Grange.--Colonel R. R. Livingston, of the First Nebraska cavalry, assumed command of the district of North-eastern Arkansas, headquarters at Batesville, and issued a proclamation in accordance therewith.--A correspondent of the Richmond Sentinel says: “The plate that is in our country, and its value to the government, if the people can be induced to relinquish it, has doubtless occurred to many minds — been, perhaps, weighed and repudiated; but yet, I presume to think, might be made to act, if not a principal, a valuable subsidiary part in any well-digested scheme to restore the credit of the Treasury, to give stability to any system of finance, to arrest depreciation of confederate notes and stock, by furnishing that in kind, which is the basis of all credits — gold and silver. I think we have it, and in large amount. We have in the possession of our people, in the form of gold and silver plate, a vast and unproductive fund — every household more or less of it. Was there ever a better time to bring it forward?--ever greater need for it?--ever stronger inducements to tender it to the government for the common good?”
A battle took place in Stono River, S. C., between the gunboat Marblehead, at anchor off Legareville, and two masked rebel batteries on shore. The fight continued until the gunboat had demolished the batteries and driven out the gunners.--(Doc. 29.)
Brigadier-General B. F. Kelley sent the following from his headquarters at Harper's Ferry, Va.: “General Sullivan's column has returned safely, bringing in one hundred prisoners, about one hundred horses, equipments, etc. My different columns are all now safely back. They have captured in all over four hundred prisoners and a large amount of property. My plans and others have been promptly and faithfully executed, with a single exception, and with but a small loss on our part.”
General Rosser returned to Orange Court-House, Va., having completed an entire circuit of the Yankee army, starting from Fredericksburgh and entering the valley at Conrad's Store. He burnt the bridge over Pope's Head Run, near Sangster's Station, just out from Alexandria, capturing and dispersing the troops left as a guard. Owing to the high water and bad weather, he was prevented from doing more damage. Gregg's Yankee cavalry pursued, but did not overtake him. General Rosser was forced to swim Bull Run. His loss was very slight, if any. The enemy, while in pursuit, destroyed two tanneries and a lot of leather at Sperryville, Rappahannock County; also, two tanneries, a flour-mill and some government workshops at Luray, in Page County. They also committed many other excesses, including the taking away of negroes, and shot a confederate named Smedley, at Washington, Rappahannock County, after he had surrendered.--Richmond Papers.
The rebel privateer Alabama captured the American ships Sonora and Highlander, both lying at anchor at a point about ten miles east of the North Sands light-ship, near Singapore, East-Indies. Captain Semmes ordered the captains of both ships on board the Alabama, examined their papers, and allowing them to take a small quantity of clothing, burned their ships, and sent them adrift in their boats without any water or provisions.
General McPherson, from his headquarters, Seventeenth army corps, at Vicksburgh, Miss., issued the following circular:
The following named persons: Miss Kate Barnett, Miss Ella Barrett, Miss Laura Latham, Miss Ellen Martin, and Mrs. Moore, having acted disrespectfully towards the President and Government of the United States, and having insulted officers, soldiers, and loyal citizens of the United States who had assembled at the Episcopal church in Vicksburgh, on Christmas-day, for divine service, by abruptly leaving said church at that point in the service where the President of the United States and all others in authority are prayed for, are hereby banished, and will leave the Federal lines within forty-eight hours, under penalty of imprisonment. Hereafter all persons, male or female, who by word or deed or by implication, do insult or show disrespect to the President, the Government, or the flag of the United States, or to any officer or soldier of the United States upon matters of a national character, shall be fined, banished, or imprisoned, according to the grossness of the offence.
The Seventh Wisconsin regiment left the army of the Potomac for home to recruit, under the general orders lately issued.--the Legislature of Alabama has voted that the carpets that cover the floor of the Senate Chamber, Hall of Representatives, and all officers' and committee-rooms in the capitol at Montgomery, be cut up and given to the soldiers of the rebel army for blankets.--an attempt at informal renewal of the cartel was made by the enemy, under the immediate agency of General Butler, who initiated his effort by sending five hundred confederate soldiers to City Point. Commissioner Ould returned five hundred Federal soldiers, but informed Commissioner Hitchcock that the confederate authorities could hold no communication with General Butler, and that there must be no further effort at a partial exchange. If the enemy desire to renew the cartel, it must be done upon fair terms, and through an agent not outlawed and beyond the pale of military respectability.--Richmond Enquirer.
A skirmish took place at Charlestown, Tenn., between the rebels under General Wheeler and a body of National troops, under the command of Colonel Laibold, of the Second regiment of Missouri infantry, resulting in the total rout and defeat of the rebels.--(Doc. 30.)
The following memorial, signed by Generals Hardee, Stevenson, Cheatham, Breckinridge, and nearly all the other officers in command of the army of the Tennessee, was read in the confederate House of Representatives:
In the existing condition of affairs it is hoped your honorable bodies will pardon the variance from custom of addressing you from the army. It is done in no spirit of dictation, but in the conscientious conviction that the necessities of the country demand the voice and labor of all, and that delay, even for thirty days, in enacting proper measures, may make present disorders incurable, and the dangers of the moment omnipotent for our destruction. In our opinion, it is essential to retain, for the term of during the war, without reorganization, the troops now in service; to place in service immediately, for the same term, all other white males between eighteen and fifty years of age, able to perform any military duty; to provide for placing in service, at the discretion of the  President, for the same term, all white males between fifteen and eighteen, and between fifty and sixty years of age; to prohibit substitutes; to prohibit exemption, except for the necessary civil offices and employments of the confederate States and the several States; to prohibit details, except for limited times, and for carrying on works essential to the army; to prohibit discharges, except in cases of permanent disability, from all duty; to prohibit leaves and furloughs, except under uniform rules of universal application, based, as far as practicable, on length of service and meritorious conduct; to prohibit, to the greatest extent, the details of able-bodied officers and men to posts, hospitals, or other interior duty, and to place in service as cooks, laborers, teamsters, and hospital attendants, with the army and elsewhere, able-bodied negroes and mulattoes, bond and free. These measures, we think, if promptly enacted as laws, so as to give time for organizing and disciplining the new material, would make our armies invincible at the opening of the campaign of next year, and enable us to win back our lost territory and conquer a peace before that campaign shall be ended. We beg further to suggest that, in our opinion, the dissatisfaction, apprehended or existing, from short rations, depreciated currency, and the retention of old soldiers in service, might be obviated by allowing bounties, with discriminations in favor of retained troops; an increase of pay; the commutation to enlisted men of rations not issued; and rations, or the value thereof, to officers.--Eighty-two rebel prisoners from Camp Douglas, Chicago, went to Boston, Mass., to enter the United States naval service. They were taken directly to the North-Carolina, receiving-ship.
The Ninety-third New York, First Delaware, and Fifth Michigan regiments, left the army of the Potomac for home to recruit, under the general orders lately issued.--the gas company at Norfolk, Va., having sealed up their works and refused, for several months, to light the city, General Butler ordered the establishment to be seized and “ carried on efficiently and economically, so that the city of Norfolk will be fully lighted, and its peace and quiet in the darkness of the night be assured, until it is made certain, that in case of an attack upon the city of Norfolk, the rebel proclivities of the owners will not leave the city in darkness, as a means of impairing the defence made by the United States forces, and when the owners have, by their works and not by their lips, convinced the military authorities that they can rely upon their loyalty for aiding in repelling an invasion of the rebels, and a keeping up of the works to aid us in that behalf; then, and not until then, will the works be returned to their custody. In the mean time, accurate accounts will be kept of the receipts and expenditures, and the excess of profits, which no doubt will be considerable, will be paid to those who are loyal in the sense of the word as understood by loyal men.”
The battle of Mossy Creek, Tenn., was fought this day, and resulted in the defeat of the rebels, after a severe contest.--(Doc. 31.)
A skirmish took place in the outskirts of St. Augustine, Fla., between a detachment of the Tenth Connecticut regiment, detailed to guard a party of wood-choppers, and a squadron of rebel cavalry, who attempted to seize the teams. The rebels were unsuccessful, but in the fight three privates of the Tenth were killed, and Lieutenant Brown, the officer commanding the detachment, was so badly wounded, that he afterward died.
Yesterday an affair occurred, at Matagorda Bay, Texas, between the Union gunboats, a company of the Thirteenth Maine regiment, and a large force of rebel cavalry and a rebel gunboat. The small party of Union troops, under General Herron, had landed with the object of cutting off the rebel pickets, but were attacked by the cavalry, who were driven off by the gunboats. The cavalry, aided by the rebel gunboat, subsequently attacked the Nationals, and caused them to vacate their position; but, this morning, a strong gale of wind drove the steamer ashore, and she was destroyed by fire.
Colonel McChesney, commanding Pamlico Sub-District, N. C., while reconnoitring within six miles of Greenville, with about one hundred and forty men of the Twelfth New York cavalry, First North-Carolina volunteers, and Twenty-third New York artillery, was attacked by a superior force under Major Moore, who attempted to cut off his return to Washington. After a hand-to-hand conflict the enemy retired, leaving one lieutenant and five men dead, with one piece of Starr's fine battery, caisson, and horses. Darkness prevented further knowledge of the injury sustained by the rebels. The National loss was one killed, six slightly wounded,  one missing, and three horses disabled. Lieut. William K. Adams, of company L, First North-Carolina volunteers, a gallant and dashing officer, was killed while making a charge at the head of his command. The Commanding General, Peck, thanked in general orders, Colonel McChesney, the officers, men, and guides, for this bold and successful affair.
The following review of the year and situation, was published in the Richmond Examiner of this day: To-day closes the gloomiest year of our struggle. No sanguine hope of intervention buoys up the spirits of the confederate public as at the end of 1861. No brilliant victory like that of Fredericksburgh encourages us to look forward to a speedy and successful termination of the war, as in the last weeks of 1862. Meade has been foiled, and Longstreet has had a partial success in Tennessee; but Meade's advance was hardly meant in earnest, and Bean's Station is a poor set-off to the loss of the gallant men who fell in the murderous assault on Knoxville. Another daring Yankee raid has been carried out with comparative impunity to the invaders, and timorous capitalists may well pause before they nibble at eligible investments in real estate situated far in the interior. That interior has been fearfully narrowed by the Federal march through Tennessee, and owing to the deficiencies of our cavalry service, Lincoln's squadrons of horse threaten to be as universal a terror, as pervasive a nuisance, as his squadrons of gun-boats were some months since. The advantages gained at Chancellorsville and Chickamauga have had heavy counterpoises. The one victory led to the fall of Jackson and the deposition of Hooker, the other led first to nothing and then to the indelible disgrace of Lookout Mountain. The Confederacy has been cut in twain along the line of the Mississippi, and our enemies are steadily pushing forward their plans for bisecting the eastern moiety. No wonder, then, that the annual advent of the reign of mud is hailed by all classes with a sense of relief — by those who think and feel aright, as a precious season to prepare for trying another fall with our potent adversary.
Meanwhile the financial chaos is becoming wilder and wilder. Hoarders keep a more resolute grasp than ever on the necessaries of life. Non-producers, who are at the same time non-speculators, are suffering more and more. What was once competence has become poverty, poverty has become penury, penury is lapsing into pauperism. Any mechanical occupation is more profitable than the most intellectual profession; the most accomplished scholars in the Confederacy would be glad to barter their services for food and raiment; and in the complete upturning of our social relations, the only happy people are those who have black hearts or black skins. The cry of scarcity resounds through the land, raised by the producers in their greed for gain, reechoed by consumers in their premature dread of starvation and nakedness. We are all in the dark, and men are more or less cowards in the dark. We do not know what our resources are, and no one can tell us whether we shall have a pound of beef to eat at the end of 1864, or a square inch of leather to patch the last shoe in the Confederacy. Unreasoning confidence has been succeeded by depression as unreasoning, and the Yankees are congratulating themselves on the result, which they hawk about as the “beginning of the end.” Theologians will tell us that the disasters of the closing year are the punishment of our sins. This is true enough; but a cheap penitence will not save us from the evil consequences. There is no forgiveness for political sins, and the results will as certainly follow as if there had been no repentance. As all sins are, in a higher sense, intellectual blunders, we must strain every fibre of the brain and every sinew of the will if we wish to repair the mischief which our folly and our corruption have wrought. The universal recognition of this imperative duty is a more certain earnest of our success than the high spirits of our men in the field, or the indomitable patriotism of our women at home, from which newspaper correspondents derive so much comfort. The incompetence and unfaithfulness of government officials have had much to do with the present sad state of affairs, but the responsibility does not end there; the guilt does not rest there alone. Every man who has suffered himself to be tainted with the scab of speculation has done something to injure the credit of confederate securities; every man who has withheld any necessary of life has done his worst to ruin the country; every one, man or woman, who has yielded to the solicitations of vanity or appetite, and refused to submit to any privation, however slight, which an expenditure, however great, could prevent, has contributed to the general demoralization.  It may be said that, with the present plethora of paper money, such virtue as we demand is not to be expected of any people made up of merely human beings. But some such virtue is necessary for any people whose duty it has become to wage such a contest as ours; and if the virtue is not spontaneous, it must be engrafted by the painful process through which we are now passing. We cannot go through this fiery furnace without the smell of fire on our garments. We can no more avoid the loss of property than we can the shedding of blood. There is no family in the Confederacy that has not to mourn the fall of some member or some connection, and there is no family in the Confederacy which ought to expect to escape scathless in estate. The attempt is as useless, in most cases, as it is ignoble in all. A few, and but few, in comparison with the whole number, may come out richer than when they went in; but even they must make up their minds to sacrifice a part, and a large part, in order to preserve the whole. The saying of the stoic philosopher, “You can't have something for nothing,” though it sounds like a truism, in fact, conveys a moral lesson of great significance. Men must pay for privileges. If they do not pay voluntarily, their neighbors will make them pay, and that heavily. Had those who employed substitutes to take their places in the army refrained as a class from speculation and extortion, they would not now be lamenting the prospect of a speedy furtherance to the camp of instruction. However just their cause, the manner in which too many of them abused the immunity acquired by money has deprived them of all active sympathy. We all have a heavy score to pay, and we know it. This may depress us, but our enemies need not be jubilant at our depression, for we are determined to meet our liabilities. Whatever number of men, or whatever amount of money shall be really wanting will be forthcoming. Whatever economy the straightening of our resources may require, we shall learn to exercise. We could only wish that Congress was not in such a feverish mood, and that the government would do something toward the establishment of a statistical bureau, or some other agency, by which we could approximately ascertain what we have to contribute, and to what extent we must husband our resources. Wise, cool, decided, prompt action would put us in good condition for the spring campaign of 1864, and the close of next year would furnish a more agreeable retrospect than the annus mirabilis of blunders which we now consign to the dead past.--Major-General Butler, from his headquarters at Fortress Monroe, Va., issued a general order, dismissing several officers of his command for intoxication.
The rebel steamer Grey Jacket, while attempting to run out of Mobile Bay, was captured by the Union gunboat Kennebec.--President Lincoln approved the “additional instructions to the tax commissioners, for the district of South-Carolina, in relation to the disposition of lands.”
Jefferson Davis having approved the following rule, by virtue of authority vested in him by the confederate Congress, the rebel Secretary of State gave notice thereof:
No passport will be issued from the department of state, during the pending war, to any male citizen, unless the applicant produce, and file in the department, a certificate, from the proper. military authorities, that he is not liable to duty in the army.