Foreign Intelligence: AmericaThe Illustrated London News, vol.41, no.1159, p.174.
August 16, 1862
By the arrival of the City of Washington, from New York, and the North American, from Quebec, we have received telegrams viâ Cape Race to the 5th inst.
The situation in General M'Clellan's camp remains the same. His army is suffering from scurvy and receives few reinforcements. The movements of the enemy are kept secret from the Federals, except when they reveal themselves on the south bank of the James River by opening fire on the Federal shipping.
Seven vessels of Porter's mortar-fleet had arrived at Hampton Roads, and five more were expected. It is supposed they will be employed to reduce Fort Darling.
A new Merrimac and another ram, built at Richmond, had appeared in the James River as far down as Turkey Bend. The Federal gun boats took up a position in line of battle, but no engagement ensued.
General Pope, who is said to have 60,000 men under his command, has been more active. He had crossed the Rapidan and captured Orange Court-house, driving out two regiments of Confederate cavalry. His troops continue to forage upon the farms in the Shenandoah Valley, where the people refuse to take the oath of allegiance.
Guerrilla bands are active in several of the Border States. A masked battery, planted by one of these bands on the banks of the Mississippi, 150 miles above Vicksburg, had destroyed a Federal despatch-boat and killed several hands on another Federal river steamer.
In Southern Tennessee the Federals had evacuated Grand Junction, which had been occupied by the Confederates, together with the larger portion of the Memphis and Charleston Railroad between Memphis and Corinth.
Much sickness prevailed on board the Federal fleet before Vicksburg. More than half the crews were unfit for duty. An unsuccessful attempt had been made to capture the Confederate gun-boat Arkansas, in which the Federal gun-boats Queen and Essex were damaged. The Confederates have several rams and steamers up the Yazoo River, near the mouth of which Vicksburg is situated.
Volunteers not having presented themselves in sufficient numbers, notwithstanding the tempting pecuniary inducements held out by the Federal State and City Governments, and by private subscriptions, the President has found it necessary to announce that if the 300,000 volunteers were not ready by the 15th of August immediate resort would be had to draughting from the militia. The term of service is fixed at nine months. The President declines to accept the negro regiments as soldiers, but will avail himself of them as labourers.
The Governor of Kentucky, hitherto a staunch Union man, had convened the Legislature to consider the late action of Congress touching slavery, and to provide for the safety of the domestic institution in Kentucky. This proclamation is considered treasonable in the North. It receives additional importance from the fact that the Governor has lately made a speech denouncing the confiscation and emancipation policy, and declaring that to save the Union it was necessary to throw over the Abolitionists.
Congress in the Session just closed appropriated the enormous sum of 913,000,000 dols., which, with the sum appropriated at the summer Session last year--265,000,000 dols.--amounts to 1,178,000,000 dols. since the commencement of the war.
Several persons had been arrested in the streets of New York for speaking unfavourably of the war and declaring that they could not suffer draughting.
The loyal Irish Americans of St. Louis had met and drawn up resolutions denouncing the conduct of those of their countrymen who had appealed to British protection against the threatened conscription.
Isabella Susini (neé Hinckley), the American prima donna, had died after her accouchement.
The premium on gold had fallen to 14 ½ per cent. The exports of grain to Europe were very heavy, and the cereal crops of the present year were superabundant.