He said such prisoners would be a burden to them, and a relief to us. I remarked that they would count as prisoners in making exchanges; and to abandon them in that manner, would have a discouraging effect on our troops.
He said that sending unfriendly persons out of the country was in conformity with the spirit of the act of Congress, and recommended me to reperuse it and make explanations to the people, who were becoming clamorous for some restriction on the egress of spies.
To-day I prepared a leading editorial article for the Enquirer, taking ground directly opposite to that advocated by Mr. Benjamin.
It was written with the law before me, which gave no warrant, as I could perceive, for the assumption of the Secretary.
I sent the paper containing my article to J. R. Davis, Esq., nephew of the President, avowing its authorship, and requesting him to ask the President's attention to the subject.
To-day Mr. Benjamin
may soon conquer a peace with the North; but then I fear we shall have trouble among ourselves.
Certainly there is danger, after the war, that Virginia, and, perhaps, a sufficient number of the States to form a new constitution, will meet in convention and form a new government.
Gen. Stark, of Mississippi, who fell at Sharpsburg, was an acquaintance of mine.
His daughters were educated with mine at St. Mary's Hall, Burlington, N. J.-and were, indeed, under my care.
The papers this morning contain accounts of the landing of Yankees at White House, York River; and of reinforcements at Williamsburg and Suffolk.
They might attempt to take Richmond, while Lee's army is away; for they know we have no large body of troops here.
A battery passed through the city this morning early, at doublequick, going eastward.
Yesterday Congress passed an act, supplemental and amenda tory to the Conscription Act of last April, authorizing the President to cal
Gen. C. J. McRae, and another gentleman, have been directed to investigate the accounts of Major Caleb Huse, the friend and agent of Col. Gorgas, Chief of Ordnance.
Gear. McR. writes from Folkestone, England, to Col. G. that the other gentleman not having appeared, he is undertaking the work himself, and, so far, the accounts are all right.
Messrs Isaac, Campbell & Co. (Jews), with whom the Ordnance Bureau has had large transactions, have afforded (so far) every facility, etc.
Nothing additional has been heard from either Bragg's or Lee's army.
But the positions of both seem quite satisfactory to our government and people.
How Rosecrans can get off without the loss of half his army, stores, etc., military authorities are unable to perceive; and if Meade advances, there is a universal conviction that he will be beaten.
But there is an excitement in the city.
It is reported that the United States flag of truce steamer is down the river, having on board
rve the reserved rights of his State.
He bitterly and offensively criticises the President's management of military affairs-sending Morgan into Kentucky, Wheeler into East, and Forrest into West Tennessee, instead of combining all upon Sherman's rear and cutting his communications.
He says Georgia has fifty regiments in Virginia, and if the President won't send reinforcements, then he demands the return of Georgia troops, and he will endeavor to defend the State without his aid, etc.
Bright and pleasant.
We have rumors of heavy fighting yesterday near Staunton, but no authentic accounts.
A dispatch from Gen. R. Taylor says Gen. Forrest had gained a victory at Athens, Ala., capturing some 1500 prisoners, 500 horses, etc. etc.
We still hear the thunder of artillery down the river — the two armies shelling each other, I suppose, as yet at a safe distance.
A few more days and the curtain will rise again-Lee and Grant the principal actors in the tragedy!