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[335] also very scarce, and can only be obtained at a price ranging from five to fifteen cents per pound, and then not without a physician's prescription. For a glass of ice-water fifteen cents are charged at some of the hotels. The cargo lately taken to that city by the St. Nicholas, after her capture by the pirate Captain Thomas, was disposed of by the State taking half of it, and the other half was obtained by Mr. Crenshaw, the proprietor of the Spottswood House, where Jeff. Davis and family are quartered.

Notwithstanding all the precautions which have been taken, goods of great importance to the insurgents are still occasionally forwarded to them from the North. On the Fourth of July thirty barrels of linseed oil arrived there from the city of Philadelphia, and was of great use to them in the manufacture of oilcloth for haversacks and knapsacks. It was obtained by Purcell & Co., of Richmond; and it might not be amiss for our authorities to inquire what one of our establishments furnished it.

About six weeks ago buckles and sewing-thread, for the manufacture of military equipments, became very scarce; but Mr. King, of the firm of King & Lambert, went to Massachusetts, by the Louisville and Nashville Railroad, and obtained a good supply, which he took back with him by the same route.

There is still plenty of employment for all who understand any trades useful in assisting in the equipment of the army, and they are kept busily at work. The Union Manufacturing Company, which is under the superintendence of G. P. Sloat, formerly of this city, has a contract to alter 5,000 guns from flint to percussion locks, which it is now doing rapidly.

When the war first broke out there was a scarcity of caps in Virginia, and it was estimated that there were not more than three for each soldier in the Southern army. A Mr. De Bow then commenced to make a machine to manufacture them, and finally succeeded in constructing one capable of turning out 40,000 per day, without the fulminating or detonating powder. The first efforts to make this powder were fatal to those employed. Mr. Finch, a chemist, after succeeding in manufacturing it, endeavored to continue the business in his house; but an explosion occurred by which his building was destroyed, his wife and children terribly hurt, his own eyes blown out, and such other injuries inflicted upon him that, after lingering a short time in great agony, he finally expired. Undaunted by this disaster, another man was obtained to continue its manufacture, but in a few days a similar accident occurred. His head was blown off, his arms torn from their sockets, and his assistant was also killed. Notwithstanding this, another manufacturer has since been obtained, and the insurgent army is now being well supplied from Richmond, and it is believed, by an establishment in Memphis, with percussion caps. Mean-while, Mr. De Bow is making three more cap machines--two to be used in Virginia and one in North Carolina. He is also busily at work at an infernal machine, to blow up forts and vessels. It is connected with clock work, so arranged that, in any period after it is set, from five minutes to twenty-four hours, fire may be communicated to a barrel of explosive matter. It is on an entirely different principle from the machine recently found by one of our vessels floating in the Potomac, and the Richmond secessionists seem to entertain great hopes of its utility in inflicting injuries upon us. At one time, there was a great want of powder in the South, which is now being supplied by manufacturers in North Carolina or Tennessee.

The machinery for the manufacture of arms at Harper's Ferry has been removed to Fayetteville, N. C., where two hundred and seventy-five men have been sent to put it into operation. The design is to chiefly manufacture there Morse's breech-loading rifles, for which they have obtained all the necessary patterns.

The Tredegar Works at Richmond are very busily engaged manufacturing arms for the rebel army. They turn out two sixty-eight pounders and two six-pound howitzers, or smooth-bore cannon, and a great quantity of shot and shell every week. Mr. Anderson, who is at the head of the establishment, has formed the operatives into a military organization, called the Tredegar Battalion, of which he is the commander.

The currency of Richmond is in a very disordered condition. On the best bank bills a discount of from fifteen to twenty per cent. must be paid to obtain gold, and of ten per cent. for silver of the denomination of twenty-five cents or upwards, but five and ten cent pieces are very scarce, and cannot be obtained without paying a much higher premium. The chief small currency are shinplasters issued by the corporations, which are worth about twenty per cent. less than the bank notes. The bills of the Government are paid in treasury notes, State scrip, or corporation money. The people of Richmond think it utterly impossible that our Government can obtain a loan of $250,000,000, and declare the effort of the Administration to do so to be absurd.

The public generally know comparatively little of what is transpiring in the North, as their own papers do not attempt to give correct information. Their military officers, however, appear to be well informed, and one of their most important avenues of information seems to be the Baltimore Sun, which is received there with great regularity. There are occasional interruptions of a day or two, but these do not very often occur.

Jefferson Davis takes a ride in the evening through the city on a fine gray horse, and excites considerable enthusiasm among the citizens, with whom he is rather popular. Alexander H. Stephens was not in the city when our informant left there, but was expected soon. All the secession Cabinet, and a good

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