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The Illustrated London News, vol. 38, no. 1073, p. 112.

February 9, 1861


The intelligence from the United States is of a mixed character. Colonel Hayne, commanding the States' forces in Florida, had telegraphed to President Buchanan that he would not attack Fort Pickens, and that the Southern States would avoid a collision, in the hope of an amicable adjustment, and from a desire to preserve peace. On the other hand, the secession movement continues. The senators from Florida, Alabama, and Mississippi have withdrawn from the Senate, and Georgia has signed a secession ordinance. The financial state of the Government is also unsatisfactory. The Secretary of the Treasury has reported that the expenditure for carrying on the Government till the 1st of July will exceed the revenue by 20,000,000 dollars. The Senate had passed the bill for the admission of Kansas into the Union. Mr. Crittenden's proposals for a compromise continued to be discussed, but nothing had yet come of the discussion. Mr. Douglas had prepared an amendment to the Constitution, which he intended to offer as a substitute for Mr. Crittenden's resolutions. This scheme proposes to deprive Congress of the power to prohibit slavery in the territories and to abolish the inter-State slave trade; it gives greater force to the Fugitive Slave Law; and it prohibits the coloured race from exercising any of the rights of citizenship, whether Federal, State, territorial, or municipal. It was proposed to suspend mail communication with the seceding States, and it seems to be thought that so simple a measure will damp secessionist ardour. It having been rumoured in New York that the Navy-yard would be attacked, marines were ordered under arms, and large police forces were held in readiness to act, but no attack took place. General Scott was fortifying Washington with increased zeal. The Augusta Arsenal in Georgia has been surrendered to State troops.

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