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Secession movement at the South.

the fortifications at Charleston — the Government strengthening. Them-movements at the South--a Northern view of Southern Wrongs, &c., &c., &c.,

The Bank of Charleston, S. C., resumed specie payment on the 12th inst., and the Mercury thinks its example will shortly be followed by the other Banks of the city. Gov. Perry, of Florida, is at present in Charleston. The small- pox has created a panic at Columbia, S. C, and it was thought the Legislature would adjourn to Charleston, probably, yesterday. In the North Carolina House of Commons, a resolution has been adopted that both branches of the Legislature shall sign and send to the South Carolina Legislature a paper asking if that body would confer with North Carolina and all the Southern States, in order that an "honorable adjustment of the present difficulties between the States" may be effected, and a "constitutional Union" thus be preserved. The Columbia (S. C.) papers, in noticing this action, say "too late."--The leading men of all parties at Norfolk, Va., having requested the Mayor to call a public meeting, he has done so, and designated Thursday night next. The "Ready Men" of Norfolk held a meeting this week, and enlisted one hundred men more. The force is to be divided into eight companies, four of which are to be uniformed. The organization has rented a drill room, and "expect to be five hundred strong at their next meeting." At their meeting the other night resolutions "expressive of attachment to the Union and the South" were adopted.

The fortifications of Charleston harbor — Activity Therein.

The Charleston Mercury gives a description of the fortifications of the harbor and some account of what is going on in them.--Fort Moultrie is an enclosed water battery, having a front on the south, or water side, of about 300 feet, and a depth of about 240 feet--It is built with salient and re-entering angles on all sides, and is admirably adapted for defence, either from the attack of a storming party, or by regular approaches. The outer and inner walls are of brick, capped with stone, and filled in with earth, making a solid wall 15 or 16 feet in thickness. The work now in progress consists in cleaning the sand from the walls of the fort; ditching it around the entire circumference, and erecting a glacis; closing up the postern gates in the east and west walls, and instead cutting sally-ports, which lead into strong out- works on the southeast and southwest angles, in which twelve-pounder howitzer guns will be placed, enabling the garrison to sweep the ditch on three sides with grape and canister. The northwest angle of the fort has also been strengthened by a bassinets, to sustain the weight of a heavy gun, which will command the main street of the Island. The main entrance has also been better secured, and a trapdoor, two feet square, cut in the door for ingress and egress. On the north side, all the wooden gun-cases have been placed close together on the ramparts, apparently for the purpose of securing it against an escalade, but possibly as a screen for a battery of heavy guns. A good many men are engaged in clearing the ramparts of turf and earth, for the purpose of putting down a very ugly looking arrangement, which consists of strips of plank 4 inches wide, 1½ inches thick, and 6 or 8 feet long, sharpened at the point, and nailed down, so as to project about three feet horizontally from the top of the walls.

A noticeable fact in the bastionettes to which we have above alluded, is the haste in which one of them has been built. The one completed is formed of solid masonry. In constructing the other, however, a framework of plank has been substituted. Against the inside of this wooden out-work loose bricks have been placed. Both bastionettes are armed with a small carronade, and a howitzer pointed laterally so as to command the whole intervening moat by a cross fire. In the hurried execution of these extensive improvements, a large force — about 170 men — are constantly engaged. Additions are daily made to this number, and the work of putting the post in the best possible condition for defence, is carried on with almost incredible rigor.

While the working men are doing Wonders on the outside, the soldiers within are by no means idle. Field-pieces have been placed in position upon the green within the fort, and none of the expedients of military engineering have been neglected to make the position as strong as possible. It is said that the greatest vigilance is observed in every regulation at this time, and that the guns are regularly shouted every night. It is very certain that ingress is no longer an easy matter for an outsider, and the visitor who hopes to get in must make up his mind to approach with all the caution, ceremony and circumlocution with which the Allies are advancing upon the capital of the Celestial Empire.

A few days ago, Col. Gardner, who for years had held the post of Commandant, was relieved in the command by Major Robt. Anderson, of Kentucky, Maj Anderson received his first commission as Brevet 2d Lieutenant 2d Artillery, July 1, 1825; was acting Inspector General in the Black Hawk war, and received the rank of Brevet Captain, August, 1838, for his successful conduct in the Florida war.On September 8, 1847, he was made Brevet Major, for his gallant and meritorious conduct in the battle of Molino del Rey. The other officers are: Captain Abner Doubleday, Capt. T. Seymour, Lieut. T. Talbot, Lieut. J. C. Davis, Lieut. N. J. Hall--all of the First Regiment Artillery. Capt. J. G. Foster and Lieut. G. W. Snyder, of the Engineer corps.--Assistant Surgeon S. W. Crawford, of the Medical Staff.

The force, under these gentlemen, consist of two companies of Artillery. The companies, however, are not full, the two comprising, as we are informed, only about seventy men, including the band. A short time ago, two additional companies were expected, but they have not come, and it is now positively stated that there will be, for the present at least, no reinforcement of the garrison.

Fort Sumter is a work of solid masonry, octagonal in form, pierced on the north, east and west sides with a double row of port-holes for the heaviest guns, and on the south or land side, in addition to openings for guns, loop-holed for musketry, stands in the middle of the harbor, on the edge of the ship channel, and is said to be bomb proof. It is at present without any regular garrison. There is a large force of workmen — some one hundred and fifty in all — busily employed in mounting the guns and otherwise putting this great strategic point in order.--The armament of Fort Sumter consists of 140 guns, many of them being the formidable ten inch "Columbiads," which throw either shot or shell, and which have a fearful range — Only a few of these are yet in position, and the work of mounting pieces of this calibre in the casemates is necessarily a slow one. There is also a large amount of artillery stores, consisting of about 40,000 lbs. of powder, and a proportionate quantity of shot and shell.--The workmen engaged here sleep in the Fort every night, owing to the want of any regular communication with the city. The wharf or landing is on the south side, and is of course exposed to a cross fire from all the openings on that side.

Castle Pinckney is located on the southern extremity of a narrow slip of marsh land, which extends in a northerly direction to Hog Island Channel. To the harbor side the so called Castle presents a circular front. It has never been considered of much consequence as a fortress, although its proximity to the city would give it importance, if properly armed and garrisoned. From hasty observation we find that there are about fifteen guns mounted on the parapet; the majority of them are eighteen and twenty-four pounders. Some "Columbiads" are, however, within the walls. There are also supplies of powder, shot and shell. At present there is no garrison at the post; the only residents are one or two watchmen, who have charge of the harbor light.--Some thirty or forty day laborers are employed repairing the cisterns and putting the place generally in order.

A Northern Statement of Southern Grievances.

[From the Bangor (Me.) Union.]

‘ For twenty-five years the pulpit, the school, the politician, and the press, have taught the people of the North to hate the people of the South; and yet, during all this time, with a spirit of forbearance unparalleled in the history of the world, the latter, hoping that returning reason might eventually restore a more just and generous conduct, have held up and opposed to outrages of the former, of the most insulting character, only the Constitution of the Union. But now that shield has been pierced and rent by an aggressive majority who threaten to trample it in the dust.

’ The people of the North have everywhere induced the people of the South; they have spurned them from their churches and communion tables; they have stolen their property, and prevented its recovery and restoration by State legislation; they have scattered poison among the slaves and taught them to mingle it in the cup of their master; they have incited insurrections; they have invaded their soil and murdered their citizens; they have elected a President by the force of a sectional majority, and now boast that they have the South under their feet. This last act has filled the cup of Southern endurance to overflowing, and, alas! that it should be so, the high, the noble, the generous, sovereign people of eight States, if no more, constituting the very garden of America, have at last come to look upon our Union as no longer desirable — aye, as no longer endurable

The spirit of the American Union has been departing by slow but sure degrees for nearly a whole generation, and now, we fear, it is gone. The cold, lifeless, and decaying form alone remains, soon to he hurried away by the mere formal execution of plans of secession already conceived and matured.

The position of South Carolina.

Senator Wigfall, of Texas, an extreme disunionist, defined in his speech Thursday the intentions of South Carolina:

South Carolina, he assured the Republican Senators, would be out of the Union before this day week. Immediately on the passage of the seceding ordinance a Minister Plenipotentiary and Envoy Extraordinary, accredited to the United States Government, would be dispatched to Washington, fully empowered to negotiate for the recognition of the sovereignty of South Carolina, which would bring up the question as to her right to secede. The forts at Charleston may remain in possession of the United States "for a minute, for an hour, for a day, or even for a month," until action has been taken on the subject by the government at Washington. But be assured Senators that if the envoy of South Carolina was not received, and the demands of that State for recognition complied with, her gallant sons would seize the forts and send those who came to resist them "with bloody hands to hospitable graves." This declaration, made in much more violent language than I have given it, is another cause of the depression that pervades the friends of the Union to-day.

Affairs in Louisiana.

Baton Rouge, Dec. 11.
--The bill providing for the election of delegates to the State Convention to be held at Baton Rouge on the 23d of January,has passed both Houses. In the House a strong effort was made to put the question, Convention or no Convention, before the people.

The Military bill passed both Houses, appropriating $500,000; providing for the appointment of a Military Commission and Military Bureau; also, for the organization of volunteer companies and arming the same, and for establishing military depots. The Military Board will be convened immediately, and some one will be sent to purchase arms.--The amendment of the House forbidding the purchase of arms at the North by the Board was lost. The bill of the House confiscating all the goods arriving from the Northern States after the 1st of January, and applying the proceeds of the sale of the same to the purchase of arms, was referred to a Joint Committee, and created considerable fun.

The Legislature adjourned till to-morrow, when it will probably finish its business.

Baton Rouge,Dec. 12.--The Senate passed the Convention bills after an eloquent opposition speech by Mr. Randall Hunt. Mr. Wirt Adams, of Mississippi, was introduced to the Joint Session, and made a speech announcing the action of Mississippi, and asking the co-operation of Louisiana, which was cordially received. The hall was crowded.--A bill to appoint Commissioners to the sister slave States created much discussion, but was lost. A resolution requesting the Governor to communicate to the Governors of other Southern States, as to the condition of the country, was adopted.

Baton Rouge,Dec. 12.--The extra session of the Legislature has adjourned sine die.

Alleged Proscription at Washington.

A letter from Washington says:

‘ It is stated here to-day that Postmaster General Holt having observed one of his clerks sporting a Palmetto cockade, questioned him as to what it meant. He replied that he was in favor of secession; whereupon he was informed that he need not return to his desk, that his successor would be immediately appointed. R. B. Rhodes, a $2,500 clerk in the Patent Office, an avowed secessionist, from Mississippi, on the other hand, has been granted six weeks leave of absence, to go home to serve as a member of the Secession Convention.

Prayer for the Union.

At the close of his sermon, on Saturday last, the Rev. Isaac Leesser, of the Portuguese Synagogue, in Philadelphia, gave utterance to the following prayer: O, Lord God of our fathers! we beseech Thee to listen to our prayers in behalf of these States. Grant, if it be Thy will, that their Union may be preserved entire, and that nothing may disrupt the bonds which unite this Republic. Give wisdom to those charged with the administration of the Government, that they may be animated with the spirit of conciliation and truth, so that by their moderation and counsels the evil which how appears to impend over this land may be speedily dissipated, and peace and brotherly love resume their sway over the minds of the people. Let us also entreat Thee to be with the National Council now assembled in the Capital of the land; that their deliberations may be conducted with a sincere desire to do justice to all; that they may be enabled to heal the discord which has lately been manifested, and save the Republic from ruin.

But if it has been decreed from before Thee, that the cup of confusion shall not pass away from our lips, and that we are doomed to drain its bitter contents, then do Thou, O Father of Mercy, stay the hand of violence, and suffer not that the opposing factious shall enkindle the torch of war, and dip their hands in brothers' blood.

Permit not death dealing armed ships to carry destruction on the coasts of the Atlantic or Pacific, and avert the calamity of hostile armies sweeping with violence, rapine and murder, over the fields and cities of this country.

Do this for the sake of Thy servants, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, our fathers; do it for the sake of Thy attributes of mercy, which thou didst reveal to Thy prophet Moses, when he stood before Thee of the rock at Horeb, and saw Thy goodness pass before him. And let Thy indignation be removed from us, according to Thy promise then made, inasmuch as Thou art the all-powerful One, merciful, gracious and long-suffering, who are abundant in forgiving iniquity; and if we be deemed unworthy of this favor, do it for the sake of Thy Holy name, by which we are called. Amen.


The Vicksburg Whig of Dec. 7th has the following:--As the steamer Prince of Wales landed at our levee yesterday morning, it began to be whispered about that a Cairo officer was on board, with a Louisianian, under arrest, whom he was taking to Illinois. The prisoner was named Alexander Norton, of the firm of Norton & Macauley, who had been arrested under a requisition from the Governor of Illinois. A crowd assembled on the wharf-boat, marched on board the steamer, released Mr. Norton and took him ashore Mr. Reardan, the officer, by the intercession of Mr. J. B. Butler, suffered no violence, but was allowed to take the cars for his home. The crime of Mr. Norton we do not know, but we believe the motive of his rescue was intended as retaliatory to the North.

A Mistake.

The Petersburg Express of yesterday has the following:

‘ Daybreak, yesterday morning, disclosed to the view a Secession flag waving in the breeze from the top of the majestic Bell and Everett pole, at the corner of Third and Bolingbrook streets. About half past 8 a committee of Whigs proceeded to the pole, and without much ceremony pulled down the blue bunting, and carried it away captive into an adjacent restaurant, where the heal be of Virginia, the South and the Union were respectively drunk, and the flag deposited in a sale corner, where it will await the demand of its owners. The Secession flag has a blue field with a single white star in the centre. Many mistook this for the "Lone-Star" flag of Texas, which, it is not generally known, is a type of the American flag, with the exception that in the blue field there is but one star — all the stripes, however, are attached.

Public Burning.

As we walked along the other day, says the Cuthbert Reporter of the 8th, we saw Captain Platt coming out of the bookstore with his arms full of Harper's Weekly Magazine, followed by Mr. Chas. Seavy, clerk in the bookstore, with a torch in his hand. After suitable ceremonies, these semi-abolition prints were committed to the flames. Mr. Seavy is from the North, but he came forward voluntarily on the occasion, and willingly supplied the torch to the pile.

How the preachers stand.

The Macon Telegraph says that a vote was taken on the train, between Augusta and Millen, by the Methodist preachers returning from the late session of the Georgia Conference, at Augusta, Saturday morning last. It stood: For secession 87--against it 9.

Value of Negroes in the southwest.

We have been shown a private dispatch to one of our citizens, dated New Orleans, Dec. 8th, which reads as follows:

‘ Commission houses here have stopped making advances on negroes. There is an average decline of four hundred dollars in the value of negroes, compared with last season, and the trade is dull,"

Military Company at the University.

A military company has been formed at the University of Virginia, under the title (of revolutionary memory) of the University Association of the "Sons of Liberty." The company numbers at present about 75, and there are daily additions. The principal officers are Wm. B. Tabb, Captain; Jas. T. Foster, 1st Lieutenant; 2d Lieutenant, Chas. A Davidson.

North Carolina Legislature.

On Monday last, in the Senate of North Carolina, Mr. Brown introduced a series of resolutions, appointing the Hon. Thomas Ruffin, of Alamance; Weldon N. Edwards, of Warren; Wm. A Graham, of Orange, and Wm. N. H. Smith, of Hertford, Commissioners to the Convention to be held on the 17th December, at Columbia, South Carolina, to urge that body to await a general consultation of the slaveholding States. The resolutions provided that this commission should also attend the Conventions called in other States.

An Abolitionist"paid off" and discharged.

A letter from Chester, S. C., dated Dec. 11th,says:

‘ The Vigilance Committee met to-day — a man by the name of Yerdon was tried for tampering with slaves and using incendiary language; the Chairman appointed a committee of 5 to select a jury to try him, and they selected 15 citizens, who, after hearing the evidence, sentenced him to receive 50 lashes on his bare back and have one side of his head shaved and one side of his face blacked, and at one o'clock to-morrow the Marshal of the town to escort him to the railroad, and from thence to Concord, N. C., and deliver him to the proper authorities to receive punishment for his had conduct in that place or vicinity.--The law was strictly enforced at half-after two o'clock this afternoon.

The Charleston Courier, speaking in reply to inquiries addressed it, thinks no compromise possible, and that no terms which "the more dominant sections will adopt, even under the imminence of separation, could be honorably accepted by the South."It adds:

’ Admitting however, the adjustment of terms acceptable in themselves, the great question would present itself: "What guarantees can be given?" What pledge, or token, or earnest, or covenant could be offered more obligatory on the North and more satisfactory to the South than those which have been violated again and again by the North? The great compelling cause of separation is broken faith, and the first and essential preliminary to a consultation, with a view to adjustment, is a mutual appreciation of faith between the opposing parties. The North, at least that portion east of the Hudson river, cannot give guarantees of good faith sufficient even to open a consultation.

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