Notes of the War.
It will doubtless interest our readers to know what the Yankee
newspapers say of the Southern
soldiers who have been recently captured in battle.
A correspondent of the New York World
, writing of the Fort Donelson
affair, holds forth as follows:
If the prisoners which have fallen into our hands are to be regarded as a fair sample of the Southern
army, they are indeed a pitiable lot of wretches.
The officers are men of some little refinement, but the rank and file are only like so many white serfs.
The hiatus between the privates and officers corresponds to the gap in social life between the negro owning aristocracy and the poor white trash — benighted, ignorant and uncouth far beyond expectation, even for the most rural of inhabitants.
Their appearance as they even marched on board of the transport presented a picturesque aspect.
A favorite and common substitute for blankets is a strip of showy carpeting.
blankets and the uniform, home made, butternut colored jeans is the costume of the privates and some of the Colonels
They have little or nothing else but the Confederate
bonds and Tennessee
shin plasters; gold
is all boarded.
They affect great surprise when told that this currency is worthless with us. In conversation with many of our officers they strangely found themselves agreeing with them on all the main questions which brought about the war, and seemed but little inclined to believe that the war is not being made one of emancipation.
These men will fight.
It is one of the few things they have learned.
It is of no use to say that they have not the physical courage of their race, but they cannot be a match for the giant minds of the North and West.
They report the strength of the garrison in the fort at about twenty thousand, seven thousand of them have escaped.
About eighteen hundred cavalry got out by land through our lines.
The Roanoke Island
correspondent of the New York Herald
has probably a better claim to the title of ‘"gentleman"’ than the vulgar blackguard who penned the foregoing.
Describing the appearance of the prisoners, he says:
Their uniforms are of the most miscellaneous character, and vary in color from a dark blue, through all shades, to a dingy gray, like an Irishman's frieze.
A dark pepper and salt color however, is the most prevalent one.
The designation of rank is effected with every modification of style, from a full dress gold sleeve braid down to a home-made tinselled shoulder strap, while the stripes on their pants are of broad and narrow gold fringe, blue velvet and black cloth.
A gaudy display is quite marked.
The caps are of every pattern, from regulation through all the degrees of soul masters, slouches, sugar loaves, &c., with a sprinkling of others like those worn by he historic Mississippi
gambler and Texan ranger.
The regiment of each is indicated by brass letters and figures on the caps, thus--"W. L." (Wise Legion), "46," "59," "8 N. C. S. T.," "31," "Miss
. " "Ga.
," &c. As a general thing they are very intelligent and gentlemanly men, particularly those of the Wise Legion
and North Carolina
’ The Roanoke Island
* * * * * * * * *
The rank and file of the prisoners present a still more diversified appearance.
For the most part they are low sized, stunted, sandy-complexioned, hardy fellows, attired in coarse but comfortable uniforms of gray jean cloth.
The Virginians, however, form an exception.
They preserve a gentlemanly effeminacy, not disguised by the exposure of camp life, and affect a better style of uniform and dress.
The accoutrements were of the most primitive pattern and quality.
The haversacks were made of coarse canvass or tent cloth, with large bone buttons
, the belts and straps of cowhide, kip and grain leather, while new-born Southern industry was evidenced in a number of roughly-cast leaden buttons.
In blankets they were well provided, but a want of homogeneity in size, color, and texture betrayed that they were not of C. S. A. furnishing, but had been brought from home by the men themselves.
The right talk.
The Staunton (Va.) Spectator
thus alludes to the battle at Fort Donelson
This is a sad misfortune, but it should not discourage us; on the contrary, it should increase our, determination to put forth greater exertions.
All is not lost that is in danger.
The bold hand will ‘"from the nettle, danger, pluck the flower, safety"’ ‘"The darkest hour is just before day"’ If there were no darkness, we would not appreciate the blessing of light; if we had no reverses, we could not appreciate the blessing of victory; if our freedom and independence be not purchased at a heavy sacrifice of blood and treasure, we would not be able to value them as we should.
Our confederacy, just starting upon its career, must pass through a Red Sea
of blood before it can reach the Canaan of Freedom and Independence.
The motto of our soldiers should be, ‘"Liberty or Death,"’ and their watch-word that of the famous ‘"Guard of Napoleon
"’--‘"The Old Guard may die, but surrender never."’ If we fight with this spirit, if we do not command success, we will do more, we will deserve
‘"The hour has come for manly deeds, And not for puling words"’
A New York paper on the European news.
The N. Y. Herald
commenting upon the news by the Niagara
, (which we published yesterday,) thus relieves itself:
The Palmerston Cabinet had submitted to Parliament voluminous State papers on the subject of England
's diplomatic course, down to December last, during the American
Judging from the portions of these documents now printed, we must arrive at the conclusion that the Government
had all the time a salutary dread of being involved in war with the United States
, in consequence of the commission of some act — underhand or event — of active sympathy with the Southern
rebels, and that the English
ministers had determined to wheedle, to prevaricate, and even endeavor to intimidate, Mr. Lincoln
from time to time, hoping that eventually the "fortune of arms" would be with the rebels, and then the Queen
could and would recognize them.
Indeed, Earl Russell used the above very remarkable words in a conversation which he had with Messrs. Yancey
on the subject.
Lord Lyons was instructed to inform Mr. Lincoln
that, in case of war with the United States
would consent to abolish privateering, as between the two countries during the war,
if the President
would do the same — a modest proposition, truly, coming from a Power boasting even then of having twenty thousand guns on her war ships, to a Power engaged in quelling the most formidable rebellion ever before known.
The observations of Messrs. Gregory
in the Commons, relative to the blockade, are merely the fag ends of speeches prepared for effect in the rebel cause, had that measure been really inefficient, but rendered useless by the energy and determination of our Government and its officers on the Southern