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January 1, 1863.

Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, issued his confirmatory Emancipation Proclamation, declaring the slaves in certain States and parts of States in rebellion to be henceforth and forever free.--An enthusiastic meeting was held in Tremont Temple, Boston, throughout the whole of this day — morning, afternoon, and evening — in honor of the Proclamation. The day was also celebrated in Norfolk, Va., by the entire negro population. They marched through the town in procession, numbering over four thousand persons, headed by a band of music, carrying the Union flag, cheering for the downfall of slavery, etc. At Beaufort, S. C., the day was celebrated by the freedmen, by an excursion up the Beaufort River to the encampment of the First South-Carolina colored volunteers, where they were addressed by Brigadier-General Saxton, Colonel Higginson. Rev. Mr. French, and others. After singing an “Ode for Emancipation day,” the multitude partook of refreshments. The tables were loaded with roast beef, bread, coffee, etc. Five oxen were roasted whole for the occasion.

Galveston, Texas, was captured by a rebel force under General Magruder. The town was garrisoned by only three hundred troops, protected by six small gunboats: namely, the Westfield, Clifton, Harriet Lane, Owasco, Sachem, and Corypheus. Of these, the Harriet Lane was captured, after fighting until her captain and most of his officers and crew were killed; the Westfield got aground and was prematurely blown up, together with the commander of the fleet, Commodore Renshaw, and most of her officers and crew; the others escaped.--(Doc. 95.)

Richard Yeadon, of Charleston, S. C., issued the following notice: “President Davis having proclaimed Benjamin F. Butler, of Massachusetts, to be a felon, deserving of capital punishment, for the deliberate murder of William B. Mumford, a citizen of the confederate States, at New Orleans, and having ordered that the said Benjamin F. Butler be considered or treated as an [31] outlaw and common enemy of mankind, and that in the event of his capture, the officer in command of the capturing force do cause him to be immediately executed by hanging, the undersigned hereby offers a reward of ten thousand dollars ($10,000) for the capture and delivery of the said Benjamin F. Butler, dead or alive, to any proper confederate authority.”

January 2.

The battle of Stone River, or Murfreesboro, Tenn., between the Union army of the Cumberland, under the command of Major-General Rosecrans, and the rebel force under General Bragg, which commenced two days previous, was resumed this morning, and, after a most obstinate and bloody contest, which lasted all day, resulted in the retreat of the rebel forces with great slaughter.--(Docs. 26 and 146.)

Skirmishing continued yesterday around Vicksburgh, and this morning the rebels advanced upon a portion of General Grant's army who were engaged erecting works on the lake near the city, causing them to retreat with a slight loss. General Pemberton, in command of the rebels, sent a despatch to Richmond stating that “the enemy finding all his efforts unavailing to make any inroad upon our position here, has reembarked, leaving a considerable quantity of intrenching tools and other property, and apparently has relinquished his designs upon Vicksburgh.”

President Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation was officially issued as “General order no. 1.”

A detachment of Stuart's rebel cavalry, commanded by Major Herring, made a descent into Dumfries, Va., and captured a quantity of public stores and ten sutler's wagons, belonging principally to Maine and New York regiments. The movement was accomplished with such extraordinary expedition, that but two drivers only escaped.--At Richmond, Va., brown sugar sold at one dollar and ten cents per pound, molasses at eight dollars a gallon, and other necessaries of life in proportion.--Richmond Examiner.

Salutes in honor of the confirmatory proclamation of the President of the United States, declaring freedom to the slaves of rebels, were given in many portions of the loyal States.--Boston Transcript.

Union prisoners captured at Galveston, yesterday, arrived at Houston, Texas. In noticing the event, the Telegraph said: “They are a fine-looking body of men, and ought to be ashamed of themselves for volunteering their services in the villainy of trying to subjugate a chivalrous people.” --Colonel Hoskins, commanding military post at Lebanon, Ky., made report of his operations before that place, commencing on the twentieth day of December, 1862, at which time he was notified by General Boyle that the rebel forces under General Morgan had again entered Kentucky, and ending on this day, when the pursuit of them was abandoned, by order of General Fry, three miles beyond Columbia, Ky.--(Doc. 52.)

January 3.

Captain William Gwin, of the United States gunboat Benton, died this evening of the wounds he received in the action near Vicksburgh, Miss., on the twenty-seventh of December last.--A volunteer cavalry company, under the command of Captain J. Sewell Reid, arrived at New York from California, on the way to Massachusetts, in order to join the Second cavalry of that State. They were raised in San Francisco, and represented nearly every loyal State in the Union.--Murfreesboro, Tenn., was evacuated by the rebels.--(Doc. 26.)

Last night a portion of the command of General Washburne's cavalry left camp at Helena, Ark., and in a terrific storm of wind and rain, proceeded to a point near La Grange, where, at daylight this morning, they dashed upon a camp of rebel cavalry, and succeeded in scattering them through the woods and destroying their camp, besides capturing ten men and two officers, and killing and wounding ten others.--General Gorman's Despatch.

Early this morning Moorefield, Va., was attacked by a strong rebel force under the command of General Jones, and after a contest with the garrison of several hours' duration, they were beaten off and compelled to retreat, carrying with them, however, sixty-five prisoners with their arms, and six horses.--Wheeling Intelligencer.

January 4.

Major-General Hurlbut, commanding District of Tennessee, issued an order at Memphis, warning the resident sympathizers with guerrillas, that threats having been made that the railroads in his command would be interrupted, he would, for every attempted raid upon such roads, send to the South ten families of the most noted secessionists in Memphis, and those to be selected from the wealthiest and highest social position.--General Orders No. 10.

[32] At Galveston, Texas, the rebel General J. B. Magruder issued the following proclamation: “Whereas, the undersigned has succeeded in capturing and destroying a part of the enemy's fleet, and in driving the remainder out of the harbor of Galveston and beyond the neighboring waters, and, the blockade having been thus effectually raised, he therefore proclaims to all concerned, that the harbor of Galveston is open for trade to all friendly nations, and their merchants are invited to resume their usual commercial intercourse with this port.” --Official Proclamation.

January 5.

Captain John H. McNeill of Imboden's rangers, made a descent upon the National troops in Hardy County, Va., and succeeded in killing one, and in capturing thirty-three men, sixty-one horses, with accoutrements, besides several revolvers and other articles of value. This was accomplished after the rebel forces under General Jones had retired from Moorefield.--Richmond Dispatch.

By direction of the President of the United States, the troops in the Department of the Gulf were constituted the Nineteenth army corps, to date from December fourteenth, 1862, and Major-General N. P. Banks was assigned to the command.--The English sloop Avenger, while trying to run the blockade at Jupiter Inlet, Fla., was captured by the gunboat Sagamore.--Captain W. B. Cushing with the schooner Home, made an expedition up Little River, N. C., surprised and captured a rebel fort. destroyed all its defences and stores, and retired without any casualty.--Official Report.

Brig.-Gen. R. H. Milroy, commanding the National forces at Winchester, Va., issued a notice to the citizens of that place, of his intention to maintain and enforce the Emancipation Proclamation of President Lincoln.--The rebel pickets, stationed eighteen miles below Kinston, N. C., were driven in by the advance of General Foster's forces.--An emancipation jubilee was held at Cooper Institute, in New York City.--Jefferson Davis returned to Richmond from his tour in the South-west.

January 6.

The British iron steamer Antona, haden with Enfield Rifles, a battery of brass field-pieces, powder, medicines, boots, tea, etc., from Liverpool via Havana, was captured off Mobile, by the United States steamer Pocahontas, while attempting to run the blockade.--(Doc. 97.)

General Rosecrans, from his headquarters at Murfreesboro, Tenn., issued a general order, announcing to the commissioned officers of the rebel army, taken prisoners by the forces under his command, “That, owing to the barbarous measures announced by President Davis, in his recent Proclamation, denying parole to our officers, he will be obliged to treat them in like manner.”

The expedition under the command of General Samuel P. Carter, reached Manchester, Ky., on its return from East-Tennessee.--A meeting was held at Beaufort, N. C., at which resolutions were adopted, denouncing the course of Governor Stanly, in his administration in that State.

January 7.

The Richmond Examiner of this date, in discussing the Emancipation Proclamation of President Lincoln, says, that it is the “most startling political crime, the most stupid political blunder, yet known in American history,” that “servile insurrection is the real, sole purpose of the Proclamation,” that it “shuts the door of retreat and repentance on the weak and timid,” and that the “Southern people have now only to choose between victory and death.” --Four hundred and fifty women and children left Washington, D. C., for Richmond, Va., and other parts of the South, under official permission.--A reconnaissance from Winchester to Woodstock, Va., was made this day by a party of the First New York cavalry, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Von Schickfuss.--Philadelphia Inquirer.

January 8.

A fight took place at Springfield, Mo., between the Union forces under Brigadier-General Brown, and a numerically superior force of rebels under General Marmaduke, resulting, after a contest of more than ten hours duration, in a retreat of the latter. The loss was nearly equal on both sides.--(Doc. 98.)

Yesterday a large reconnoitring force of Union troops, under the command of Major Wm. P. Hall, embarked at Yorktown, Va., on board the fleet of gunboats and transports, under the command of Catain F. A. Parker, and arrived at West-Point, at the junction of the Pamunkey and Mattapony Rivers, early this morning. Thence they proceeded to Lanesville, where they captured a wagon-train, consisting of contraband goods, en route for richmond, consisting of gutta-percha, block-tin, paints, medicines, shell-lac, and ordance stores. Leaving a strong picket-guard at Lanesville, they next proceeded to Indian Town, [33] where they found two wagons loaded with meal, awaiting ferriage to White House, and destined for Richmond. After destroying these, with the telegraph, and seizing the mail, they crossed the Pamunkey to White House, where they destroyed by fire the ferry-boat, two sloops laden with grain, two barges, four pontoon-boats, the steamer Lottie Maynard, a store-house, containing over one thousand bushels of wheat, a large quantity of commissary stores, etc. The torch was next applied to the railroad depot, containing a large amount of freight for Richmond, the tank, the rolling stock, signal station, sutlers' buildings, and stores. The force remained until the demolition was complete, when, the object of the reconnoissance having been accomplished, they returned to Yorktown, having sustained no loss whatever during the expedition.--Official Report.

Captain Moore, of the Twentieth Illinois cavalry, this morning at sunrise, made a sudden descent upon the camp of Lieutenant-Colonel Dawson's rebel command, near Ripley, Tenn., and dispersed the occupants, killing eight, wounding twenty, and capturing forty-six prisoners, among whom were one major, two captains, and one lieutenant. He also seized twenty horses, and one wagon-load of arms. Dawson's party had been engaged for many weeks burning all the cotton that could be found in that part of the country. Captain Moore did not lose a man, and had only three wounded.--Wolverine Citizen.

The English sloop Julia was captured near Jupiter Inlet, Fla.--General Mansfield Lovell was dismissed from the service of the rebels for incapacity.--The steamer Mussulman was burned by guerrillas at Bradley's Landing, ten miles above Memphis, Tenn.--General Pemberton, in command of the rebel forces at Vicksburgh, issued an order expressing his high appreciation of their “recent gallant defence” of that position.--The rebel steamer Tropic, formerly the Huntress, of Charleston, S. C., while attempting to run the blockade, was destroyed by fire. Her passengers were saved by the boats of the National gunboat Quaker City.

January 9.

In consequence of the destruction of a locomotive and construction train, upon the Nashville and Chattanooga Railroad, this day, by Richard McCann and Thomas Kilkird, leading a gang of outlaws, Col. R. S. Moore, of the Eighty-fifth Illinois volunteers, was ordered to proceed with his regiment to the houses of the abovenamed persons, and to destroy their houses, barns, farms, and all property susceptible of destruction upon their respective grounds, by fire, or any other means at his command--General R. B. Mitchell's Special Order.

Colonel Ludlow, of General Dix's staff, returned from City Point, Va., to Fortress Monroe, having accomplished an exchange of prisoners, by which twenty thousand men were restored to active service in the National army.--The army of the Cumberland, under the command of Major-General Rosecrans, was divided into three army corps, to be known as the Fourteenth, commanded by Major-General Thomas, Twentieth, commanded by Major-General A. McD. McCook, and the Twenty-first, under the command of Major-General T. L. Crittenden.--General Orders, No. 9.

The lower branch of the Legislature of Indiana, adopted a series of resolutions, condemning the arrests made by order of the National War Department as “acts of tyranny and flagrant violations of the rights of the people.”

January 10.

A skirmish took place at Catlett's Station, Va., between a party of National cavalry, under the command of Colonel Schimmelfennig and Hampton's rebel cavalry.--Governor Letcher, of Virginia, in response to a requisition of Jefferson Davis, issued a proclamation calling out the militia of the counties bordering on the North-Carolina line, to aid in repelling any attempt at invasion by the National forces.--Orison Glines was riden on a rail at Stoneham, Mass., for having deserted from the National army.

January 11.

The United States steamer Hatteras, under the command of Lieutenant R. G. Blake, was sunk off the coast of Texas, by the rebel steamer Alabama, after an engagement of twenty minutes.--(Doc. 100.)

The steamer Grampus No. 2, lying at the mouth of Wolf River, Tenn., was surprised and captured by thirteen rebels, taken five miles above Memphis, and there stripped and burned.--The Virginia Legislature passed a resolution, directing the Special Committee appointed to consider the resolution touching the legal tender of confederate notes, to inquire into the expediency of “punishing by suitable penalties, any citizen of the commonwealth who shall refuse to receive the Treasury notes of the confederate States, in discharge of any debt or obligation for the payment of money.” --Richmond Inquirer.

Fort Hindman, Post Arkansas, was this day [34] captured by the National army of the Mississippi, under the command of Major-General McClernand, in conjunction with the fleet of gunboats, under Admiral Porter, after a combat of three and a half hour's duration, with a loss of nearly one thousand Union men killed, wounded, and missing.--(Doc. 101.)

Colonel Penick, Fifth Missouri cavalry, commanding military post at Independence, Mo., reported that the rebel guerrillas were committing horrid barbarities on the Union soldiers and citizens of that State.--(Doc. 102.)

A fight took place to-day near Hartsville, Mo., between a detachment of Union troops, under the command of Colonel Merrill, Twenty-first Iowa, and a force of rebels under General Marmaduke, resulting in a retreat of the latter with great loss.--(Doc. 99.)

January 12.

Day before yesterday the brigantine J. P. Ellicott, was captured by the rebel privateer Retribution, her officers and crew taken on board the privateer, and a prize crew put in charge of the brigantine. The wife of the mate was left on board the Ellicott, and to-day having succeeded in getting the rebel crew intoxicated, she put them in irons, took possession of the vessel, and piloted it into St. Thomas, where she delivered the rebels and the ship to the United States Consul.--New York Commercial Advertiser.

Louis Napoleon this day opened the session of the Senate and Corps Legislatif of France, with a speech, in which he referred to affairs in America, as follows:

The condition of the Empire would be flourishing if the war in America had not dried up one of the most fruitful sources of our industry. The forced stagnation of labor has caused in many districts an amount of destitution which deserves all our sympathy, and a grant will be asked from you (the legislature) for the support of those who, with resignation, submit to the effects of a misfortune which it is not in our power to stop.

Nevertheless, I have made the attempt to send beyond the Atlantic advices inspired by a sincere sympathy; but the great maritime Powers not having thought it advisable as yet to act in concert with me, I have been obliged to postpone to a more suitable opportunity the offer of mediation, the object of which was to stop the effusion of blood, and to prevent the exhaustion of a country the future of which cannot be looked upon with indifference.

Holly Springs, Miss., was visited by a party of rebel guerrillas, who retired after committing various depredations on the property of the loyalists.--General Banks, at New Orleans, issued a general order, confirming General Butler's order of December ninth, 1862, assessing cotton factors and others who had subscribed to the secession fund, for the support of the poor.

January 13.

The United States gunboat Major Slidel, under the command of Lieutenant Van Dorn, surrendered to a party of rebel guerrillas at Harpeth Shoals, on the Cumberland River, Tenn., without firing a shot. The United States transport steamers Hastings, Trio, and Parthenia, with wounded troops, were also captured by the same party of rebels, at the same time and place. After robbing the wounded soldiers of all their money, overcoats, boots, and blankets, they were transferred to the Hastings, which was then permitted to proceed on her voyage. The other vessels, including the Slidel, were burned.--(Doc. 104.)

At New Orleans, General Banks gave the following notice to the people of that place: “That offensive personal demonstrations, by language or conduct of any character, by persons of any class whatever, with the intention of giving personal offence, or tending to disturb the public peace, are forbidden, and will be punished with relentless severity. Parents will be held responsible for the respectful conduct of their children, and prompt measures will be taken to fasten upon the proper parties any act of this character. All persons who may be witnesses to such conduct are directed, as a measure of public peace, to give information thereof to the Provost-Marshal, or at these headquarters.” --The schooner Hampton was captured in Dividing Creek, Va., by the United States steamer Currituck.--Com. Harwood's Despatch.

January 14.

To-day an engagement took place on the Bayou Teche, La., between four Union gunboats, under the command of Commodore Buchanan, assisted by a force of troops, under General Weitzel, and the iron-clad rebel steamer J. A. Cotton, assisted by a body of rebel troops, under the command of Colonel Gray, resulting, after a contest of several hours' duration, in the destruction of the rebel iron-clad. Commodore Buchanan was killed in this action by a rebel sharp-shooter.--(Doc. 106.)

The steamer Forrest Queen was captured and burned by guerrillas at Commerce, Miss., this [35] evening.--The National gunboat Queen of the West, under the command of Colonel Charles E. Ellet, commanding the ram fleet in Western water, while on a reconnoissance on the Red River, was fired on, near Gordon's Landing, by a battery of four guns, and subsequently captured by the rebels.--(Doc. 105.)

January 15.

Mound City, Arkansas, was burned by a detachment of National troops, the place having long been the resort of guerrillas.--The bill authorizing the issue of one hundred million dollars in United States legal tender notes, was signed and became a law.--A detachment of the Twenty-second Wisconsin regiment, carrying despatches from Helena to Clarendon, Ark., were attacked by a body of rebels, who succeeded in capturing seventeen of their number. In the skirmish a rebel lieutenant and six men were killed and wounded.--Chicago Tribune.

January 16.

General James G. Blunt having discovered that certain attorneys and war claim agents, in his military district, had been guilty of endeavoring to incite dissatisfaction and insubordination among the soldiers, issued an order to his subordinates, authorizing the arrest of all such offenders, and that they be sent to his headquarters at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, with the charges against them preferred.--Commander Couthouy, and the officers of the United States steamer Columbia, which vessel was stranded at Masonboro Inlet, N. C., yesterday, surrendered themselves to the rebels, under Colonel Lamb, this day.

The naval expedition up the White River, Ark., under the command of John G. Walker, of the gunboat Baron DeKalb, landed at Duvall's Bluff, meeting with no resistance, and captured two eight-inch guns and carriages, two hundred stands of arms with their accoutrements, and three platform cars, upon which the guns were being hoisted, when the rebels took the alarm and fled. Lieutenant Walker also captured seven prisoners. He then retired, leaving the place in the charge of the troops under General Gorman, who arrived shortly after the captures were made.--Lieutenant Walker's Report.

The funeral of Major-General O. M. Mitchel took place at Plymouth Church, Brooklyn, N. Y., this day.--The English sloop Brave, from Nassau. N. P., was captured by the gunboat Octorora.--An enthusiastic Union meeting was held at New Orleans, La., at which speeches were made by Thomas J. Durant, and others, and resolutions urging an earnest and vigorous prosecution of the war were adopted unanimously.--New Orleans True Delta.

The transport ship Planter, with men and material belonging to the National army. was wrecked this morning, near Stranger's Key, Bahama.--The rebel steamer Oreto, escaped from Mobile harbor, Ala., running directly through the National fleet blockading that place.--(Doc. 107.)

January 17.

Major-General Joseph E. Johnston, of the rebel army, issued a general order modifying a previous order issued from his Headquarters, in relation to unauthorized absentees belonging to the departments of Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana, so as to grant them a full pardon provided they should return to their proper commands by the twelfth of February.--Jackson Mississippian.

Des Arc, Ark., was taken possession of without opposition by Captain Walker of the gunboat De Kalb, and a regiment of infantry commanded by Colonel Spicely of the Twenty-fourth regiment of Indiana volunteers.--A skirmish took place at Pollocksville, N. C., resulting in the flight of the rebels and the occupation of the town by the National troops.--At Liverpool, England, an antislavery conference took place, at which Mr. Spence, a sympathizer with the rebel government, attempted to resuscitate the argument that slavery could be supported on Scriptural grounds, but he was refused a hearing. A resolution in favor of the National Government was carried by a large majority, and a committee was appointed to bring the subject before the people of Liverpool.--Numbers of families who, during the expected attack on Charleston last summer, removed from that city, returned “to their homesteads, content to await the storm that may at any time burst over their heads, and to abide the result.” Mobile Register.

January 18.

The Chattanooga Rebel, after surmising how the birth-day of Washington will be celebrated in the loyal States, says: “Here in the South we shall pay a different tribute to the day. We shall honor it by silent homage. It is said that the President will issue his proclamation of ‘fasting and prayer’ as a fit commemoration of the trials, sacrifices, and glories of Washington. They are types of our own heroes and martyrs, and whilst we remember and do reverence to the deeds and beauties of character which have consecrated the name of the Father and Country, we shall also bear in mind [36] those Spartan virtues of manhood and those Southern virtues of womanhood which adorn our page and ennoble our day.”

January 19.

President Lincoln addressed a letter to the workingmen of Manchester, England, acknowledging the receipt of an address and resolutions adopted by them at a meeting held at Manchester on the 31st of December, 1862. In closing his letter the President said: “I do not doubt that the sentiments you have expressed will be sustained by your great nation; and, on the other hand, I have no hesitation in assuring you that they will excite admiration, esteem, and the most reciprocal feelings of friendship among the American people. I hail this interchange of sentiment, therefore, as an augury that, whatever else may happen, whatever misfortune may befall your country or my own, the peace and friendship which now exist between the two nations will be, as it shall be my desire to make them perpetual.” --(Doc. 119.)

The Third battalion of the Fifth Pennsylvania cavalry, commanded by Major Wm. G. McCandless, made a reconnoissance in the direction of Barnesville, Va., thoroughly scouting all the roads branching from the Williamsburgh and Richmond turnpike. Two companies which remained on the turnpike, under the command of Captain Cameron, having been sent forward as an advance-guard, Lieutenant H. A. Vezin, with eighteen men, detained twelve as a reserve, and ordered Sergeant Anderson, with six men, to march two hundred yards in advance of the column, to act as videttes, and if attacked by a superior force, to fall back on the column. Thus the squadron marched to within one mile of “Burnt ordinary,” when a party of seventy or eighty mounted rebels appeared, drawn up in line across the Richmond road. Sergeant Anderson ordered his men to fall back, but immediately in his rear appeared some twenty rebels drawn up in line, cutting off the Sergeant and his party, and capturing the whole advance. Seeing his critical position, he put spurs to his horse and succeeded in cutting his way back to Lieutenant Vezin and his reserve, giving that officer the alarm, who immediately ordered his twelve men to draw sabre, charge and give the rebels the cold steel. Here was daring with scarce a parallel in the war. One Lieutenant, one sergeant, and twelve men charging nearly a hundred rebels drawn up in line of battle. Dashing forward, they broke the rebel ranks, and captured all their companions but one, together with four rebels and five horses fully equipped.

This afternoon, in lat. 23° 50 “, long. 84° 17” , the brig Estelle was captured and burned by the rebel privateer Oreto (Florida) under the command of Captain J. N. Maffit.--The army of the Potomac, under the command of General Burnside, broke camp and began to move down to the fords on the Rappahannock, for the purpose of crossing to the south bank of that river, and attacking the rebel army under General Lee.--(Doc. 110.)

A debate took place in the rebel House of Representatives on President Lincoln's emancipation proclamation, and the proposition of Jefferson Davis to execute Federal officers in retaliation. On this occasion Mr. Foote of Mississippi, said he preferred, in lieu of retaliatory measures, as suggested by the resolutions, that an attempt should be made to stop the shedding of blood by a movement to bring about peace. It would strengthen the friends of peace at the North, and perhaps have the effect of producing a state of things so much desired, notwithstanding the opposition of the abolition party. He signified his intention to offer a resolution hereafter — not for the purpose of yielding one inch of ground to the North, but to throw the entire responsibility upon the Federal government, if these scenes of blood were to continue. Mr. Dargan, of Alabama., took the ground that powers at war must retaliate. The resolutions contemplated the turning over of captured officers to the State governments and to let them be punished according to their laws. He did not think that was correct, but suggested that the government should take the responsibility itself. Mr. Lyons, of Virginia, said the government had no power to turn captured officers over to the States. Nor was there any necessity for the resolutions, since the (rebel) President said in his message that he would do it, unless prevented by Congress. He favored the passage of a law prohibiting such a course, and to repose the power of retaliation entirely in the hands of the government. When an officer was captured, if there should be any cause for retaliation, we might retaliate upon him; if not, we were bound to exchange him. He could not, by any law of nations, when captured by one government, be turned over to another government for trial. He would prefer that any officer captured in any State after [37] the promulgation of the emancipation proclamation should be instantly hanged, and not subject him to the uncertainties of a trial by jury.--Mr. Kenner, of Louisiana, moved that the House go into secret session to receive the report on this subject of the Committee of Ways and Means. The motion was agreed to, and the House went into secret session.

January 20.

John A. Andrew, Governor of Massachusetts, was authorized by the National War Department, “until further orders, to raise such numbers of volunteer companies of artillery for duty in the forts of Massachusetts and elsewhere, and such corps of infantry for the volunteer military service as he may find convenient, and may include persons of African descent, organized into separate corps.” --War Department Order.

The rebel steamer Oreto arrived off Havana, Cuba, and was allowed to enter and proceed up the harbor to an anchorage.--Major-General Peck, in orders from his headquarters at Suffolk, Va., expressed his satisfaction at the soldierly qualities exhibited by Colonel Alfred Gibbs, of the One Hundred and Thirtieth N. Y. S. V., and his confidence in his disposition and ability to discharge whatever duties might fall to him, with credit to himself and the National service.

January 21.

Governor Vance of North-Carolina, sent a message to the General Assembly of that State, then in session, informing them that since their adjournment the invaders of their State had concentrated a large force upon the coast, and were threatening their remaining seaports and lines of communication; that every preparation possible had been made to resist the invaders, and, he hoped, not without success. But still, that much remained to be done to strengthen their army and add to its efficiency; he, therefore, offered a few suggestions to them on that subject.--(Doc. 108.)

The National ship of war Morning Light, together with the schooner Velocity, which were blockading the Sabine Pass, Texas, were surprised and captured by the rebel steamers Josiah Bell and Uncle Ben.--Colonel J. B. Douglass, commanding the Sixty-first regiment of Missouri volunteers, from his headquarters at Columbia, Mo., sent the following to General Curtis:

Late this evening, a body of troops under my command, whilst on a scout and some nine miles from my headquarters, found a confederate camp, with tent and all the necessary appurtenances thereto, containing eight confederate captains. The camp was situated in a very brushy country; consequently they escaped from their tent, my men following, and eventually succeeding in capturing four of them, after a brief resistance. We got all their arms, camp equipage, etc. The lateness of the attack prevented us from capturing the whole of them. My men camped on the ground. We also succeeded in capturing two of Porter's men in addition.

I regret to say that two of my bravest troops got seriously wounded in the fight before we captured the four rebel captains. They never surrendered until they had exhausted all their shots, they being armed with double-barrelled shot-guns, in addition to navy revolvers.

You can now see why I object to this indiscriminate release of bad men from prison, and why you should not permit banished men to return here.

Colonel S. H. Mix, Third New York cavalry, with eight companies of his regiment, returned to Newbern, after a successful scouting expedition into Onslow, Trent, and Jones counties, N. C. He obtained much valuable information, had several skirmishes with the rebels, routing them on every occasion, captured a number of prisoners, arms, mules, etc.--(Doc. 109.)

The schooner Ettiwan, while attempting to run the blockade out of Swash channel, Charleston harbor, was captured by the gunboat Ottawa, under the command of Lieutenant William D. Whiting.--The rebel Lieutenant-Colonel Hutchinson, with one hundred men of Morgan's cavalry, made a descent upon Murfreesboro, Tenn., and captured a large party of National troops and carried off thirty wagons.--(Bragg's Despatch.)

Galveston, Texas, being occupied by rebel troops who were engaged in erecting defences in and around that city, Commodore H. H. Bell, commanding the blockading fleet off that port, issued an order warning the foreign consuls and foreign subjects and all other persons concerned, that the city of Galveston and its defences were liable to be attacked at any day by the forces of the United States under his command, and gave twenty-four hours for “innocent and helpless persons” to withdraw.--Fitz-John Porter was cashiered and dismissed the service of the United States.

At Ashton, England, Milner Gibson, M. P., President of the British Board of Trade, delivered an address to his constituents reviewing the [38] position of England toward the United States. He alleged that slavery was the main cause of the war by inducing even secession for its defence. He urged England to adhere to her neutral course in the strictest manner, and denied the wisdom of foreign mediation, intervention, or a “hasty recognition” of the “so-called confederates.” In this connection Mr. Gibson recited statistics setting forth the largely increased imports of breadstuffs and provisions from the United States to England during the year just ended, and warned his hearers that if the Executive involved their country in a war with the United States their first act should be to blockade the American ports, and thus cut off this immense and vital supply from the starving operatives of Lancashire.

January 22.

The second attempt on the part of the Union army of the Potomac, under the command of General Burnside, to obtain possession of the southern bank of the Rappahannock as a base of operations against Richmond, was unsuccessful. The attempt was foiled by a rainstorm, which made the roads impassable.--(Doc. 110.)

The brig Windward was captured and burned by the rebel privateer Oreto, off Cuba.--John Gill Shorter, rebel Governor of Alabama, issued an address to the people of that State, urging them again to come forward in the defence of the Southern government, and expressing the hope that none would “be permitted to hide under cover of home from their appropriate duty.” --See Supplement.

January 23.

A band of Tories, (loyalists,) about seventy in number, “under an outlaw named Taylor,” were this day attacked by a body of rebels under Colonel Folk, in Johnson County, East-Tennessee. “The Tory cavalry and infantry were parading in a field near the Fish Springs. Colonel Folk ordered his men to swim the river and charge them. The Tories seeing this, abandoned their horses and took shelter upon the summit of a large ridge. Folk's men were then dismounted, and charged up the ridge, completely dispersing the Tories. All of their horses were captured. Four of the Tories were killed, and a number wounded, and captured. The captured were immediately hung, by order of Colonel Folk. Taylor was killed.” --Richmond Dispatch.

A severe snow-storm prevailed at Staunton, Charlottesville, and other points in the Shenandoah Valley, Va.--The National army and gunboats at Arkansas Post, Ark., having blown up the fortifications and demolished every thing that could be made a means of offence or defence, evacuated the place and proceeded to Vicksburgh.--Simon Cameron resigned his position as American Minister to Russia.

January 24.

General Dodge, commanding the military district of Corinth, Miss., reported that the rebels were putting to death many of the inhabitants of his district, for the only reason that they were loyal and Union-loving people. He gave the names of several who were hanged, others who were hunted down by bloodhounds, and of others whose houses were burned over their heads.--(Doc. 111.)

The steamer Warsaw, while on her way to Memphis, was fired into by a rebel battery of two guns, at Island No.84, on the Mississippi River.--Brigadier-General Daniel S. Donelson was appointed to the command of the rebel department of East-Tennessee, in the place of General E. Kirby Smith.--Richmond Whig.

January 25.

The organization of the First regiment of colored South-Carolina loyal volunteers, was this day completed.--General Saxton, in announcing the event to the Secretary of War, said: “The regiment is light infantry, composed of ten companies of about eighty-six men each, armed with muskets and officered by white men. In organization, drill, discipline, and morale, this regiment, for the length of time it has been in service, is not surpassed by any white regiment in this department. Should it ever be its good fortune to get into action, I have no fear but it will win its way to the confidence of those who are willing to recognize courage and manhood, and vindicate the wise policy of the Administration, in putting these men into the field, and giving them a chance to strike a blow for the country and their own liberty. In no regiment have I ever seen duty performed with so much cheerfulness and alacrity; and as sentinels, they are peculiarly vigilant. I have never seen, in any body of men, such enthusiasm, and deep-seated devotion to their officers as exists in this; they will surely go wherever they are led. Every man is a volunteer, and seems fully persuaded of the importance of his service to his race. In the organization of this regiment, I have labored under difficulties which might have discouraged one who had less faith in the wisdom of the measure; but I am glad to report that the experiment is a complete success. My belief is, that when we [39] get a footing on the main land, regiments may be raised, which will do more than any now in service to put an end to this rebellion. I have sent the regiment on an expedition to the coast of Georgia, the result of which I shall report for your information, as soon as it returns.” --General Saxton's Report.

A party of rebel cavalry attacked a train on the Nashville and Chattanooga Railroad, at a point nine miles below Nashville, captured and paroled fifty prisoners, and made an attempt to burn the cars, but National reinforcements approaching from different points, they left, after causing a partial destruction of two platform cars.--The obsequies of the rebel Major C. R. Wheat, were celebrated at Richmond, Va.--A battalion of Colonel Mix's New York cavalry surprised an important rebel picket station on the road from Newbern to Kinston, S. C., and captured nine rebel soldiers, with their arms and accoutrements.

January 26.

Major-General Joseph Hooker, having been appointed to succeed Major-General Burnside, assumed the command of the army of the Potomac, and issued general orders to that effect from his headquarters at Falmouth, Va.--Major-Generals W. B. Franklin and E. V. Sumner relinquished their commands in the army of the Potomac.--At Vicksburgh Miss., the gunboat Chillicothe was engaged in shelling the lower rebel batteries, without provoking a return fire.

Early this morning a party of rebels in ambush, commanded by a lieutenant of the Second South-Carolina infantry, attacked a scouting-party of twenty-one men from Colonel De Cesnola's cavalry brigade near Morrisville, Va., killing a scout named Michael A. Fagan, company C, Fourth New York cavalry, and wounding another scout named Dixon, of the Ninth New York cavalry.--New York Times, February 1.

The bark Golden Rule, Captain Whitebury, belonging to the Panama Railroad Company, was captured by the privateer Alabama, fifty miles south of St. Domingo. The Alabama sent a boat's crew on board the ship, and the captain was asked if his cargo belonged to neutral owners. He replied that it did, whereupon Semmes demanded the evidence of the fact. This could not be produced, as the captain had not even a bill of lading to show that his cargo was shipped by neutrals. Semmes informed him that if he had even a consular certificate that any portion of his cargo was the property of neutrals, he would let him depart unmolested. In the absence of such evidence the officers and crew were removed to the Alabama, portable articles of value were taken, and the ship set on fire and destroyed. The captain was allowed the liberty of the ship, but the mates and crew were placed in irons. The captain was treated with great kindness, and all hands safely landed at the city of St. Domingo.

A short skirmish took place at Woodbury, Tenn., between General Palmer's division of Grant's army and seven rebel regiments, resulting in the defeat and rout of the latter, with a loss of thirty-five killed, including a rebel colonel, and over one hundred prisoners. General Palmer had two killed and nine wounded.--At Mendota, Illinois, a grand Union meeting was held at which resolutions were adopted and speeches were made indorsing the action of President Lincoln and the Emancipation Proclamation.--Chicago Tribune.

In the rebel Congress in session at Richmond, a desultory debate occurred on a resolution introduced by Mr. Crockett of Kentucky, with reference to the conditions on which peace should be negotiated. Mr. Foote of Tennessee indicated the claims and interest which Maryland would have in such a negotiation, as the faith of Congress had been pledged that peace should not be concluded without securing to her a free election of what her position should be. He expressed continued faith in the loyalty and patriotism of the people of Maryland, and thought that no more prejudice should attach to the position of this State than to that of Kentucky and Missouri. He ridiculed the idea of a Border Confederacy. He was not in favor of any political confederation with the States of the North-West. He had been misrepresented in this respect. He was in favor of a military league, offensive and defensive, with any one of the North-Western States that would lay down her arms, and he would assist and protect such State against the power of the Lincoln Government. He thought that by proper influences and methods the North-West could be disjointed from New England and the Middle States in this war in less than sixty days.

After touching a number of topics in connection with the probable event of a negotiation for peace, Mr. Foote said he was not prepared to discuss the whole subject within the confines of the [40] present resolution before the House, but that he would at a future time submit some enlarged resolutions on the subject.--Richmond Examiner.

Governor Vance of North-Carolina, issued a proclamation commanding the soldiers of that State who were illegally absent from their regiments in the rebel army, to return to duty on or before the tenth day of February, under pain of being tried, and, upon conviction, executed for desertion.

January 27.

Bloomfield, Mo., was visited by a party of the Sixty-eighth Missouri militia, under the command of Colonel James Lindsay, and a large number of rebel guerrillas were driven out of the town, with a loss of fifty-two prisoners, seventy horses with their trappings, and nearly one hundred stand of arms. The Unionists met with no loss.--Col. Lindsay's Despatch.

Fort McAllister, on Genesis Point, Great Ogeechee River, Ga., was attacked by the ironclad monitor Montauk, under the command of Captain John L. Worden, three gunboats, and a mortar-schooner, but after a bombardment of many hours' duration, they failed to reduce it.--Savannah News.

A. D. Boileau, the proprietor of the Philadelphia Evening Journal, was this day arrested by order of the National Government and taken to Washington.--An enthusiastic Union demonstration took place at Fayetteville, Ark.--Captain Williamson of General Weitzel's brigade, had a fight with a small body of rebel troops at Indian Village, on Bayou Plaquemine, La., and succeeded in routing them without any material loss to the Nationals.--New Orleans True Delta.

January 28.

At St. Louis, Mo., a large and enthusiastic meeting was held this evening to ratify the Emancipation Proclamation of President Lincoln. Speeches were made by Charles D. Drake and others, and a poem contributed to the meeting by W. D. Gallagher, was received with unbounded applause and approbation.--St. Louis Democrat.

Brigadier-General Schofield from his Headquarters at Springfield, Mo., sent the following message to General Curtis: “Colonel Harrison telegraphs from Fayetteville the success of a scout just returned from Van Buren, Mo., having captured the steamer Julia Roan and three hundred prisoners, about two hundred of whom were paroled. The scout consisted of one hundred and thirty men of the First Arkansas cavalry and Tenth Illinois cavalry, under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Stewart. No loss on our side. On that of the enemy, two killed and several wounded.--A heavy snow-storm prevailed on the Rappahannock River, which, partially melting as it fell, put the roads in an indescribable condition.”

January 29.

The British iron steamer Princess Royal, laden with rifled guns, arms, ammunition, steam-engines, etc., was captured oft Charleston, S. C., while attempting to run the blockade.--(Doc. 112.)

The Senate of Missouri passed the resolution of the lower House asking the Congress of the United States to appropriate twenty-five millions of dollars for emancipation purposes in that State, by a vote of twenty-six yeas to two nays.--General Banks at New Orleans, issued a general order promulgating the confirmatory Emancipation Proclamation of President Lincoln.

A fight took place at Bear River, Washington Territory, between a force of Union troops under the command of Colonel Connor, and a large body of Indians, resulting, after a bloody contest of four hours duration, in a rout of the Indians with great loss.--(Docs. 113 and 142.)

The first decision under President Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation was made in St. Louis by Judge Glover, who decided in favor of its legality, and ordered the discharge of the slave of a rebel who had been arrested under State law for leaving his master. This decision, if sustained, would leave Missouri secessionists without civil authority to reclaim their slaves.--General McClernand's forces landed on the Louisiana side of the Mississippi River, five miles below the mouth of the Yazoo River, and in full view of the city of Vicksburgh.--Missouri Republican.

The Emancipation Society of London, England, held a meeting at Exeter Hall, which “proved to be one of the most important demonstrations of public opinion known in London since the days of the League. For half an hour before the time appointed for the commencement of the proceedings the great hall was crowded, and it became necessary to hold a second meeting in the lower hall while a third meeting was held in the open air, in Exeter street. The name of Abraham Lincoln was received with immense applause, the audience rising and cheering and waving their handkerchiefs. During the course of the proceedings, the chairman received telegrams from Bradford and Stroud, announcing that meetings [41] were being held in those towns, and that resolutions had been passed in favor of negro emancipation. Resolutions sympathizing with the cause of the North, and advocating the policy of the President of the United States were adopted, and speeches were made denunciatory of the South, and the London Times.”--London Daily News.

January 30.

The United States gunboat, Isaac Smith, under the command of Acting Lieutenant Conover, while reconnoitring in the Stono River, S. C., was fired into by three masked batteries of rifled guns, and, the vessel getting aground, was captured.--(Doc. 114.)

A party of National troops under the command of Colonel Wood, Twenty-second Ohio volunteers, left Trenton, Tenn., and proceeded to Dyersburg, where they broke up a camp of rebel guerrillas, under the leadership of Captain Dawson. Thirty-four of Dawson's men were killed or captured, but he himself escaped.

Yesterday one hundred conscript rebel soldiers went into Murfreesboro, Tenn., and voluntarily surrendered themselves, declaring their attachment to the Union, requesting the privilege of taking the oath of allegiance, and to-day two hundred more followed their example.

The schooner Hanover of Provincetown, Massachusetts, was captured off the south side of San Domingo by the rebel schooner Retribution.--Boston Traveller.

A fight took place at a point nine miles from Suffolk, Va., known as the “Deserted House,” between a force of Union troops under General Corcoran, and a body of rebels under the command of General Roger A. Pryor, resulting, after a desperate struggle of three hours duration, in the retreat of the rebels. The loss in this affair was about equal on both sides.--(Doc. 115.)

January 31.

Colonel T. W. Higginson of the First South-Carolina colored volunteers, yesterday sent Captain Charles T. Trowbridge with a detachment of his regiment to examine the condition of the rebel salt-works on the coast of Georgia, and to-day the Captain made the following report of his operations:

Colonel: In accordance with instructions, I proceeded yesterday in search of the salt-works supposed to be at King's Bay. They have not been rebuilt since they were destroyed on a former expedition.

Changing our course, we found salt-works about five miles up Crooked River, on the main land. After a march of two miles across the marsh, with thirty men, and drawing a boat to enable us to cross an intervening creek, we destroyed them. There were twenty-two large boilers, two store-houses, a large quantity of salt, two canoes, together with barrels, vats, etc., used in manufacturing the salt.

Early this morning the rebel iron-clad steamers Palmetto State and Chicora, accompanied by three small steamers, the General Clinch, Ettiwan, and Chesterfield, attacked the United States blockading fleet off Charleston, and disabled two of the vessels.--(Doc. 116.)

This day while Kennett's National cavalry were out on a scout from the vicinity of Nashville, Tenn., they unexpectedly came on Wheeler's brigade of rebel cavalry while the latter were being paid off at Rover, a little village on the Shelbyville and Nolensville road, eighteen miles from the former town. A brief hand-to-hand sabre fight ensued, which terminated in the complete rout of the rebels, who left on the field twelve killed, about the same number of wounded, and lost three hundred prisoners. A few of the Union soldiers were wounded, but they did not lose a man.--Louisville Journal.

The arrest of deserters in Morgan County, Indiana, being resisted, Colonel Carrington, commander of the National forces at Indianapolis, sent a squadron of cavalry to oppose the resistance. The cavalry were met and fired on by the mob, when they charged, dispersing the rioters and capturing six citizens and the deserters.--The Senate of the United States passed a resolution tendering a vote of thanks to Commander J. L. Worden, for good conduct in the fight between the Monitor and Merrimac, in March, 1862.--A body of National troops, under General Jeff. C. Davis, entered Shelbyville, Tenn.

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