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Affairs in the United States.

Our latest Northern files contain some matters of interest, from which we select the following:

The New road to Richmond.

The New York Times has a long editorial on the squabbling of its contemporaries over a new route to Richmond. It is contended by one that the Peninsula is the only road by which the Federals can reach the "Rebel Capital," and by another that the Administration will not take it because it was chosen by Gen. McClellan. It says:

‘ Now we were not aware that Gen. McClellan had taken out a patent for the Peninsula line of operations against Richmond, though we had supposed that the lamentable failure he made in his attempt to reach the Rebel capital by this route, would not prove a very powerful temptation to infringe any right he may have to its exclusive possession. We rather fancy, however, that it will be found that the chief obstacle to our gaining Richmond by any of the half-a-dozen attempts we have made against it, by both the overland and the Peninsula lines, has been the rebel army that has obstructed our path, rather than anything in the path itself. If we could only discover a method of eliminating Lee's army, we imagine "On to Richmond" would be an easy task. Until that is done there will be a very serious obstacle to our getting there by any route. On the face of the map there is certainly nothing in either the overland or the Peninsula line to Richmond that need much embarrass an advance. They are both good enough, and we do not know that there is much to choose between them. From the line of the Rappahannock, now held by our advance cavalry, the distance to Richmond is but sixty miles, with the advantage of a railroad and several rivers by which to supply an army — a task which, put into comparison with Rosecrans's great march from Murfreesboro' to Chattanooga, is but child's play. In the mere matter of the territorial march the Peninsula line is undoubtedly the shorter; but this route has the counterbalancing disadvantages which always attach to military operations dependent on a water line for a connection with the base of supplies. We take it that the question of an advance to Richmond is one which will be decided purely by military contingencies. If Lee ventures on the further subtraction of another corps from the Army of Northern Virginia for reinforcement to the army fronting Chattanooga it will open to Gen. Meade an opportunity which he will quickly seize. If he does not venture to make this subtraction, owing to the menace of Meade's presence, the Army of the Potomac will still be serving the purpose of keeping that force in check and thus lessening the task of our army in Tennessee. Whether or not Gen. Meade should at present attempt a new campaign against Richmond, is, therefore, simply a question of the relative strength of the two armies, and the cant about the "road to Richmond," and the ascription of any special magical virtues to that by the Peninsula, is the dictate either of an unintelligible stupidity or of a very intelligible factiousness.

Gen. Scott--his last words.

The "veteran hero" of Bull Run, Gen. Winfield Scott, has returned to New York and taken rooms at Delmonico's. The New York papers say a great many of the personal admirers of the Venerable Humbug have called to "have a shake of the distinguished old soldier's hand." A "A "personal admirer," connected with the New York Times, called and prints the important results of the visit:

‘ He was cordially welcomed by the General, whom he found ing the society of two lads, his grandchildren. The veteran is pleased to see his friends, but the necessity and propriety of not making visits too long will suggest themselves.--As to his spirits, they are excellent, and his feelings cordial and hearty as ever. His health is what he terms good, though he suffers from an affection of the spine, which prevents him from walking as much as he would wish; still he generally walks to his church and takes some moderate strolls. He remarked:

"I am now going up to fourscore years, a longer period than the Great Disposer of events permits many men to live, yet I praise Him that still my mental faculties are unimpaired and that they are as vigorous as ever. I just had a visit from a friend, hoary-headed like myself and my senior in years; yet he and I were conversing upon matters that occurred forty and fifty years ago — matters which are as vivid to my memory now as at the periods they happened. True it is that old age will shake the best of men; but when a young man I was very strong and possessed of an excellent constitution. Besides these, I was of a very determined resolution. "

The General is most scrupulous in attendance at church, and is a close and constant student of the Word of God. His reverence for and gratitude to his Creator is one of the many marked characteristics of the venerable Chieftain. He expects to remain in the city during the winter, and his apartments are arranged with that view. As he has been all his life he is now, an early riser, his breakfast hour being eight. After this he drives out; writes and reads; a short nap during the day, and he retires at 10 o'clock.

On the subject of the war the General is reticent. It gives him pain. To a question in regard to it he shook his head, replying, "That is a matter I do not talk upon; it is a subject for others to discuss, and not for me to dwell upon in my old age. It is in other hands, and must now engage the attention of other heads."

When his carriage awaits him at Delmonico's, and it is known to be Gen. Scott's, a crowd of persons, anxious to have a glance at the esteemed and respected veteran, gather around it. He is most courteous, and has a kind "How do you do?" for all.

It may be stated in this connection that the General is understood to have been devoting a very large portion of his time for a long while past to writing; the subject of his labor is not definitely known, but if the result is for the world it will be one of greatest value and importance, and also be another monument to one of the greatest and most successful warriors of the age in which he lives.

Lincoln's religious Experience — Joe Miller has often wished that he was more devout.

The members of the Baltimore (O. S.) Presbyterian Synod, now in session at Washington, called on Abraham (Hanks) Lincoln one morning last week. When he appeared Rev. Septimus Tustin, D. D., the Moderator, addressed him to the effect that the Synod had come to pay their respects and salutations; that "each member belonged to the Kingdom of God," and, what was of more importance to Hanks, that "each was loyal to the Government." We copy the following account of this touching interview from a Washington letter:

The President in reply spoke as follows:

‘ "I can only say in this case, as in so many others, that I am profoundly grateful for the respect given in every variety of form in which it can be given from the religious bodies of the country. I saw, upon taking my position here, that I was going to have an Administration, if an Administration at all, of extraordinary difficulty. It was, without exception, a time of the greatest difficulty that this country ever saw. I was early brought to a living reflection that nothing in my power, what ever in others to rely upon, would succeed without the direct assistance of the Almighty; but all must fall.

"I have often wished that I was a more devout man than I am. Nevertheless, amid the greatest difficulties of my Administration, when I could not see any other resort, I would place my whole reliance in God, knowing that all would go well, and that he would decide for the right.

"I thank you, gentlemen, in the name of the religious bodies which you represent, and in the name of the common Father, for this expression of your respect. I cannot say more."

’ The President seemed to be deeply moved when he said, ‘" I have often wished that I was more devout than I am,"’ to which he gave a very tremulous utterance.

Dr. Gurley said, ‘"Mr. President, these are all members of this Synod, and if you have time they would like to take you by the hand."’

The President--"Certainly, I shall be most happy to shake hands with all of them. "

The members of the Synod then came forward and personally paid their respects to the President, and retired, heartily gratified with the interview.

Interview between John Minor Botts and the Rebel Secretary of War.

Under this heading the New York Tribune publishes the following, from one of its correspondents with the Army of the Potomac:

‘ A friend, just returned with the army on its backward march, gives me an interesting account of his visit to John Minor Botts. He found that gentleman enjoying his beautiful farm of 2,100 acres, which he has recently purchased for $100,000 in Confederate currency. Mr. Botts had just met with the rebel Secretary of War, and gave the following account of Judah P. Benjamin's end of the war. In the course of the conversation Mr. Benjamin asked Mr. Botts how long he thought the war would last. The latter replied that he could tell if he only knew how long the South could raise men. When they could no longer fill up their ranks the war would stop.

In his turn Mr. Botts asked the Secretary if he still adhered to his opinion, expressed at the commencement of the rebellion, that the war should be continued till they had every part of slave soil, including Maryland, Kentucky, Missouri, &c. Mr. Benjamin said that he did. Mr. Botts, who happened to have an apple in his hand, cutting off a slice, said: ‘"That represents Kentucky, which you have lost."’ Another still represented Tennessee, and a third Louisiana. Vicksburg and the Mississippi were shown by a cut of the apple that penetrated to its very core. Finally, when Mr. Botts had cut away more than half the apple, he said: ‘"Now, Mr. Benjamin, when you can put the severed pieces of that apple together again as nature first joined them, you may hope to reconquer every foot of slave soil, and not till then."’

Gen. Crittenden's farewell to his corps.

The following is the farewell order of Maj.-Gen. Crittenden to his corps upon his removal from command:

Headq'rs 21st Army corps,

Chattanooga, Oct. 10, 1863.
To the Officers and Soldiers of the Twenty-First Army Corps:
The General commanding announces with sorrow that the name of this corps has been stricken from the army rolls, and that he has been relieved from duty and ordered to report to Indianapolis, that his conduct in the late battles at Chickamauga may be investigated.

The General commanding regrets the separation from his command, not the investigation. Investigation, the closest scrutiny, however if may affect him, can only brighten your fame. Your deeds at Chickamauga, as at Stone river, will hand down to posterity your honored names.

You have honored me! The mighty hand of the Twenty-First Army Corps has graven the name of its commander on famous pages of the past. And the slanderer's tongue cannot revoke the past.

Future honors await you. May God's blessings attend you!

(Official.) T. L. Crittenden,
Major Gen'l U. S. Vols.
P. P. Oldershand, Capt. and A. A. G.

Arrest of blockade runners from Norfolk — arrival there of Boone, the Castle Thunder Murderer.

The Provost guard at Norfolk captured a few nights since, with four wagon loads of goods, and a quantity of greenbacks and gold, several blockade runners. The parties were tried, and fined as follows — the fines to be paid in gold: Geo. Gourdette, $100; Benj. Thomas alias Taylor, $25; Jno. C. Fentress, $25; Mrs. Blamire, $100, and Mrs. A. K. Staples, $100. G. Barnes was released on taking the oath. A Norfolk letter to the Herald, dated the 27th, announces the arrival of Boone, who, with several companions, escaped from Castle Thunder a few nights since by murdering the guard:

‘ Yesterday there came into outlines at Williamsburg, Capt. Boone, of a Louisiana cavalry regiment. He is the same whose escape, together with that of three other prisoners, was noticed in the late Richmond papers. It seems that he fought a duel some time since which resulted fatally. In consequence he was incarcerated in Castle Thunder. His ease assuming an uncomfortable aspect, he, in company with three others, determined to effect an escape. Accordingly, one night they succeeded in cutting their way through into a room below theirs, where was stored a quantity of arms. Of these they helped themselves, in order to better effect their escape. To make their ruse complete one of their number acted the part of a prisoner, while the rest, fully armed, performed the part of guard. Supposing that it was only the customary formula of transferring a prisoner, the sentries did not trouble them in the least. Once without the limits of the city, the party separated, each taking the course best calculated for his safety.--The Captain arrived in safety, but the rest of the party have not yet appeared.

Guerillas again at work in Kentucky.

The Louisville Democrat announces that a force of guerillas are again at work in that State. They number from 200 to 700, and are commanded by the "notorious" Richardson. It says:

‘ They entered the town of Columbia, Adair county, on Tuesday night, robbed the stores of their contents and stole all the good horses in the neighborhood, when they left in the direction of Greensburg, Green county. On Wednesday morning they reached Greensburg and captured the place without any resistance. Here they also robbed the stores and carried off all the good horses in the neighborhood. They robbed the bank at this place of $16,000 in Kentucky money and $9,000 in greenbacks. After committing all manner of depredations they left, moving in the direction of Bardstown.

At a late hour on Thursday night they reached Bardstown and entered the place without opposition, as no Federal troops were stationed there.--Here they burned (as our informant states) the depot, together with a locomotive, five or six cars, and some ten thousand bushels of wheat, besides a large quantity of produce and provisions. Here, as elsewhere, they entered the stores and robbed them of everything of value that they contained. They cut the telegraph wires, but did no damage to the train. Early yesterday morning they left Bardstown, but in what direction they moved we have not been informed. It is the general belief that they moved off towards the Lebanon branch of the Nashville road.

More arrests in New York — Seward's Bell Ringing again.

The Herald, of Thursday, says:

‘ United States Marshal Murray made some very highly important arrests in this city yesterday, and succeeded in getting, with the parties, a large number of documents of a very valuable character.--The contents of these have not yet been divulged, nor has it been deemed prudent to give the names of the parties arrested. The subject matter of the papers is said to be most peculiar, and to throw light upon certain operations relative to Vallandigham and the rebels, with which the general public has not yet been made acquainted. Some of them may at some future time be given to the public press, but are held back at present for "good and sufficient reasons." The parties arrested were yesterday conveyed to Fort Lafayette in carriages by the proper officers. It may not be contraband to state that three of the parties are well known business men and merchants of this city, and that one of them is a prominent Republican.

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October 10th, 1863 AD (1)
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