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The War news.

All was quiet on the north side of James river on yesterday. There was considerable shelling of Dutch gap by our batteries, and it was reported that General Pickett, from his lines south of Battery Howlett, had also opened with his cannon upon the enemy in his front, who are believed to be mostly negroes. It is also said that picket firing has been actively resumed on this part of the lines.

It was reported on yesterday that Grant had sent off a considerable body of troops to co- operate with Sherman in Georgia, and to aid that General in reaching and establishing a base on the Atlantic coast. We do not vouch for this rumor, but must say there is nothing improbable in it. Still, we think it more likely that Grant is mustering his forces for an early demonstration on General Lee than scattering them to aid Sherman. It is just possible that Sherman's coming to grief might not be disagreeable to him. That General has already acquired so much of glory as to become a dangerous rival as a candidate for the next Presidency — a reason sufficient to prevent Grant's regretting any ill luck that may now befall him. But, as Sherman has gained much reputation and glory by his campaign, so has General Grant gained little of either; and it is highly important to him to do something before the close of the year. He has now laid idle before Petersburg a month and two days; and but one month more of the year is left him. He must do something quickly. We may, therefore, if the weather permit, expect an early demonstration on both our wings. We say on both wings, because we have no faith in the Yankee statement that Butler's canal is nearly completed; and without the aid of this canal, there is not much likelihood that any attempt will be made upon our centre.--We speak of this prospect most cheerfully, as we believe our army was never before so well prepared for battle.

From Petersburg.

At Petersburg, there are movements on our extreme right that give rise to the expectation that the enemy are about to make an attack in that quarter.

On last Friday, there was some skirmishing on the right, and there has been some artillery firing at different points on the lines since. At night the enemy keep up a constant musketry fire from their picket lines, with the design of preventing a surprise. Since Mahone's descent upon their pickets, they have been very nervous and apprehensive.

From Georgia.

Our Georgia exchanges furnish us with very little intelligence to copy Governor Brown has issued a proclamation for a levy en masse of the whole free white male population in the State between sixteen and fifty-five years old for forty days service. All persons refusing to report will be "carried immediately to the front." The fright in Milledgeville, when the enemy approached, was very great — some of the members of the Legislature paid as high as one thousand dollars to be carried eight miles. A letter was received in Columbus on Saturday, from Palmetto, a point on the West Point and LaGrange railroad, stating that Kilpatrick, with five thousand Yankees, was advancing down the country on the Alabama side of the Chattahoochee, burning and destroying everything.

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