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Washington, Dec. 22, 1860.
Mr. Breckinridge, in forming the Committee of Thirteen, shows the difference between himself and Pennington. He has placed the ablest men of all sections on it, and if anything can be done to stop the Revolution they will do it. Conservatives place great confidence in this committee.

Meantime, Lincoln's virtual declaration of war against South Carolina has dispelled the hopes of many who went to bed last night in the most sanguine spirits. If it is expected that threats will have any other influence than to confirm South Carolina in her position, and to bring the whole South actively to her aid, the Republicans are grievously in error. There is much despondency here today.

The bill authorizing the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad to extend its Washington branch across the Long Bridge so as to connect with the Virginia roads, passed the Senate yesterday by a decided vote of 35 yeas to 15 nays.--The bill is hampered with many amendments which may prevent its acceptance by the company; but the extension is imperiously demanded by the exigencies of travel and trade, which will not permit stoppages and changes when they can be avoided.

A shrewd New England man said this morning that all Charleston has to do is to declare itself a free port; the Yankees will do the rest. Uncle Sam may impose as many embargoes on the port as he pleases, but the Yankees will fool him to death, and soon we shall find the whole Northwest running to Charleston to buy goods free of duty.

I have it from most reliable authority that Lincoln has decided on the following men as Southern (1) members of his Cabinet, to wit: Cassius Clay, Edward Bates and Frank Blair. The South has little to hope from constitutional advisers of this sort.

Weed is expected here hourly. Seward, on the pretence of going to see his family, had a three-day's confab with Weed, who at once pushed off to have an interview with Lincoln, and now comes post haste to the Federal city, bringing, it is supposed, a compromise of some kind with him.

Mr. Douglas, it is said, will at an early day advocate the plan of cutting off New England. I doubt this. Moreover, it is quite plain that all New England combined is not so dangerous to the South as the Tribune newspaper, which this plan proposes to retain in the new Union.

The feeling here is against South Carolina. She is sneered at and reviled by the majority of the people. But many are devoted to her cause, and I have heard from a man who mixes with the lower orders that secession is on the increase among them.

At the Theatre we have a drama of the French Revolution, which the managers, I suppose, deem appropriate to the times.

A gentleman just returned from a month's sojourn in South Carolina tells me that never before in all his life has he seen a whole people so imbued with a deep, solemn purpose, as are those people there. "If," says he, "any man wants to be cured of the opinion that South Carolinians are acting in a fit of wild, rash passion, let him spend three days among them, and my word for it, he will find that he has been dreaming. This is an uprising of the whole people. They will never come back into this Union until they are conquered."

I received a letter from Louisiana last night, which closes by saying, "this State will be out of the Union, as certain as fate, by the 1st of February." Zed.

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