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From the North.
latest of the rebellion.
"the Circle of fire."
the end of the rebellion Appearing.
&c., &c., &c.

From the Baltimore Clipper and Sun, and the New York Times, of the 17th, we continue to make extracts of the latest intelligence from the United States:

The rebellion Overthrown.

Washington, D. C., Feb. 15
I feel that I violate no confidence in stating, as I now do, that the highest military authorities of our Government believe the Confederate rebellion to be hopelessly over thrown. Gen. McClellan is expecting to hear, any hour, that the rebel army is in full retreat from Manassas, and when it breaks away from Manassas, it is doubtful if even Richmond will be a point in the next line of defence. The most probable policy of the rebel leaders will be to retreat as expeditiously as possible from all points to the Gulf States, and try to make a stand there, hoping by their compact masses to resist our armies, until the fervid heats of summer shall come to their aid, and help thin our ranks and demoralize our soldiers.

If the Confederate leaders should be able to leave in their rear a population devoted to their cause and hostile to us, they might safely abandon Virginia, North Carolina and Tennessee to the possession of the Union armies. The annoyance of guerilla warfare, of bridge burnings and secret assassinations, would make the presence of our armies in the enemy's country very costly in men and money. And if summer fevers should add to other harassing losses, we might find ourselves far from the end of the rebellion.

But such will not be the state of things if the rebels abandon Virginia, North Carolina, and Tennessee. Their retirement will enfranchise hundreds of thousands of loyal citizens in those States, who will spring with joy to meet the old flag, and rapidly range themselves under the regular constitutional Government that the Confederate traitors have tried to extinguish Virginia is as loyal a State, to-day, as ever Maryland or Missouri was. And as for Tennessee, I verily believe that it always was, and is now, more truly and even ardently loyal than any border slave State in the Union. North Carolina is nearly akin to Tennessee in patriotic feeling. If, therefore, the Confederate armies retreat to the Gulf States, the loyal citizens of Virginia, North Carolina, and Tennessee, will immediately reorganize their State Governments, and with rejoicing as sincere and hearty as ever animated any people on earth they will reclaim their old places in our glorious Union. is there an arm in all the North that will be lifted to stay their coming? I do hardly believe it.

Passes for the South--order from Secretary Stanton.

Washington, D. C., Friday, Feb. 13
--Ordered--First--That all applications for passes to go South across the military lines of the U. States be made to Major General John A. Dix, commanding at Baltimore, who will grant or refuse the same at his discretion.

Second--That all prisoners of war and other persons imprisoned by authority of any department of Government, who shall be released on parole or exchange, shall report themselves on arrival at Baltimore to Major. Gen. Dix, and be subject to his direction while remaining in that city. Any failure to observe his order will be taken as a forfeiture of the parole or exchange.

The regulations here to fore existing which required passes across the military lines of the United States to be signed by the secretary of State, and countersigned by the General commanding, is rescinded by order of the President.

Edwin M. Stanton, Sec. of War.

The use of Fort Donelson--its importance — the rebel soldiers and commanders.

Fort Donelson is situated at Dover, Tenn on the west bank of the Cumberland river, a few miles south of the northern boundary of the State, and was built last summer, about the same time as Fort Henry. It is located at a point where the river washes an ob use angle in its north ward course. It is 12 miles southeast of Fort Henry, which was captured just nine days before the present victory.--The main object of the fort was to stand as a rear defence to Bowling Green, and also as a defence against our approach to Nashville by the Cumberland river. It was believed by the rebels that it would block up effectually our passage into Tennessee in this direction. Some seven or eight post roads here intersect each other, and the railroad from Bowling Green to Memphis passes but four miles south of it. This same railroad, it will be remembered was cut a short distance west, at the Tennessee river, by our gunboats, immediately after the fall of Fort Henry, and is now again destroyed at the crossing of the Cumberland. Fort Donelson controls the river as far up as Clarksville; where the rebels may perhaps again make a stand as we advance onward to Nashville. At Clarksville they have fortifications and a pretty strong armament, and lately they had there also a considerable body of troops.

The enemy are supposed to have had three batteries at Fort Donelson--one near the river's edge, one fifty feet above this on the high ground, and a third fifty feet above the second; this upper one mounted four 18 pounder guns. Our gunboats first attached the water battery, but the rebels held back the fire of their upper and strongest work until Com. Foote, with his usual daring, had brought his boats within four hundred yards of the fort. He still advanced, however, until he got within 100 yard of it. At 4 o'clock on Saturday this upper redoubt, constituting the right wing of the enemy's fortification, and which commands the remainder of the rebel works, was taken by our troops, and from it the old flag was flung to the breeze. Of the exact armament of these various works we have not information, but, at the latest date to which our knowledge extends, there were mounted some 20 heavy guns, 18, 32, and 64 pounders. It is not to be wondered, placed as these were, that they should have done considerable damage to even such strong boats as compose our iron plated Western river fleet. And there is no doubt that large additions to the number were within a week made from Bowling Green--as Com, Foote says, in his official dispatch, that in the upper and lower redoubts alone there were mounted 20 guns.

The number of rebels manning the fortifications was estimated last Thursday, by our commanders on the field, in the dispatch published last Saturday, as high as 10,000. No further reinforcements could have been thrown in after that time, as our forces then had invested the fort. If General Hallect's statement was correct that Floyd (the thief) was then inside the fort, it is likely that he had taken the division with which he left Bowling Green last Monday along with him, instead of having taken it to East Tennessee to fight General Thomas, as was supposed. That division consists of three brigades, one of which was immediately commanded by Floyd himself, another by Hardee, and another by Simon Bolivar Buckner. The regiments were from Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Virginia, and Kentucky, and were the flower of the rebel army in the Southwest. The four regiments also which fled from Fort Henry on its capture by Commodore Foote, had probably also taken refuge in Fort Donelson. The rebel troops at Clarksville, too, could have been easily thrown forward after the fall of Fort Henry. There is no doubt that all the rebel forces that could possibly be spared were there. Up to the 20th of last month, the fort was occupied by only a few companies of Tennesseeans, and so strongly were the rebels there posted that they did not believe we would dare to assail even them. But give the rebels all the reinforcement and the largest number claimed, and there was still an immense preponderance of men on our side — the Union force investing the fort being stated by Gen. Halleck to be fifty thousand strong. Considering the location of the fort its defences, and the forces manning it, and it will be seen that the rebels could make a severe fight — There are other things besides superior numbers to be taken into consideration in estimating the chances of a battle. The rebels succeeded, too, in disabling the most efficient of our gunboats. But as, at the latest hour, the mortar boats were nearly ready to open fire on the positions the rebels still held, in connection with the guns from the commanding position we had captured and as our brave troops were breast to breast with the rebels, we may at any hour anticipate news of the complete reduction of Fort Donelson.

Elections in Missouri--order of Gen. Halleck.

Gen. Halleck has issued a general order, the principal point of which follows a request of the Acting Governor of Missouri:

It is hereby ordered that at all future elections in this State, whether State, municipal, county or town elections, every voter will be required to take the oath of allegiance required by the State Convention of Oct. 18, 1861. Officers of polls will see to the execution of this order. If they receive votes of persons not taking the oath, they will be arrested, tried for military offence, and the election declared null and void.

Union movements in Kentucky.

The Cincinnati Commercial, of Thursday,

one week ago, gives the following important information regarding recent movements of national forces in Kentucky, which it has from trustworthy sources:"Gen. Buill's whole army, with the exception of General McCock's division, was, on Wednesday, in motion upon the enemy. Gen. Nelson's division crossed Green river on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, on its march to a grow, over the turnpike from Bardatows to that place. Gen. Mitchell's whole command marched down to Munfordville from Bacon creek, and crossed over the railroad bridge, (which has been planked,) on Monday morning, and has advanced some miles on the turnpike to Bowling Green. The condition of the roads rendering and advance over the mountains south of the Cumberland via Monticello and Albany, into Tennessee, impracticable, the main body of General Thomas's division has been ordered to move via Danville and Lebanch, also towards Glasgow. General Schoeff's brigade is reported to have passed through Lebaron on its way south. It is expected to join General Nelson. General McCook's division has marching orders, and has probably assumed a position south of Green river before this time. Papers were captured at Fort Henry showing General Polk's force at Columbus to be only 12,000 effective men — the remainder being on the sink list or worthless. It is confidently believed by our officers that Kentucky will be cleared of the last of the rebels before the 1st of March. Troops are to be sent from the line of the Potomac into Kentucky to help accomplish this desirable object. One of the best disciplined and most perfectly appointed of the Potomac visions is expected there soon. All the regiments in camp in the Northwestern States are also to be sent into Kentucky as soon as possible.

Honors to Gen. Burnside.

Resolutions authorizing the presentation of a sword to General Burnside and tendering the thanks of the General Assembly to the officers and men under him, for the victory at Roanoke Island, passed both branches of the Rhode Island Legislature on Friday.

The news in brief.

The great mortar fleet, which has been in preparation for so many weeks past at the Brooklyn Navy-Yard, is to rendezvous at Key West, a fact which affords pretty strong presumptive proof that Mobile or New Orleans is shortly to be honored with a visit from Uncle Samuel. The fleet will probably be at the ‘"Key"’ by the 1st of March.

A letter from Captain Rodgers, of the ship Macaulay, states that he was boarded by the Sumter near Genoa; but her pirate Captain, on learning that the ship hailed from Baltimore, allowed her to proceed on her voyage without molestation.

It is reported from Gen. Banks's head-quarters to Gen. McClellan that within the past week numbers of Virginians have got through our lines, reached Frederick, and presented themselves, desiring to be enrolled in the service of the United States.

A gentleman who arrived from Curiluck Sound yesterday says that several of our gunboats arrived at the canal on Thursday afternoon, at 3 o'clock, and commenced firing shot and shelf upon the rebels who were engaged in destroying the canal.

Senator Latham is preparing a report asking for an appropriation of $100,000 for a survey to establish a telegraphic communication overland from San Francisco via Behring Straits, to the mouth of the Amoor river.

Gen. Fremont will probably leave here towards the close of the week. It is believed by his friends that he will soon be assigned to important military duties.

The Baltimore and Ohio Railroad is once more open to Hancock, Gen. Lander having entirely cleared his department of the rebels. He made a forced march on Thursday night to Blooming Gap, surprising and breaking up the rebel camps at that place, and capturing seventeen commissioned officers and forty five privates Gen. Lander charged the enemy in person, at the head of the First Virginia cavalry. He lost two of his men and six horses.

Dispatches from Upper Potomac state that the rebels have completed a strong fortification on Catechin Mountain, covering one and a half acres of ground, and with platforms for twenty guns, --only four of which, however, have been mounted. The walls of the fort are stated to be seven feet high, and surrounded by a deep, at.

New York, Feb. 16.--Ther with Port Royal dates of the 12th, has arrived. No new movements are reported. All was well there. The Matanzas has the crew of the steamer Primero, which was abandoned, in a sinking condition, off Hatteras on the 14th.

The New York Times says, ‘"The rebels raised the black flag at Donelson."’

Senator Chandler has received a letter from Col. Wilcox, who says that himself and the other prisoners at Columbia, S. C., are in good health, and that their condition has been rendered comfortable by the clothing received from the United States authorities.

A dispatch from Fortress Monroe, on the 16th inst., says:

‘ The propeller Planet arrived here this afternoon from Baltimore, having on board the sub-marine cable to be laid across the bay from this point to Cape Charles. The line has already been completed from Wilmington, Del., to Cape Charles, and also from the headquarters of en. Wool, almost a mile up the beach, to the place selected for the crossing. The line will be suck in a few days and as soon as the necessary arrangements can be made, this department will then be connected directly by telegraph with Washington and New York, and the Government and the public will become informed of the important news transmitted hence from twelve to twenty-four hours earlier than at present. The line will be under the management of Mr. Wm. H. Heiss, of the U. Military Telegraph, and will be of the greatest value to the Government.

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