London: Saturday, October 4, 1862The Illustrated London News, vol.41, no.1167, p.362.
October 4, 1862
"News of an hour's age doth hiss the speaker" when he speaks American news. While English writers are commenting upon the gallant deeds of the South and considering the life of Cromwell for the illustration of that of Jackson, they are suddenly called upon to postpone their historical parallels and to record that at length General M'Clellan, aroused to a sense of the value of time, has marched rapidly to meet the invaders, has closed with them, and, after some battles of extraordinary savageness, has driven them back--how far it is not known, but it is certain that the invasion has been for the time repelled. M'Clellan has not only repulsed the Confederates but has vindicated his own character and the confidence which was placed in him by the army which he made; and, without reference to the struggle itself, those in England who have all along rebuked the ingratitude with which his early and patient services were requited, and who felt a kind of impatient pity for a populace that preferred the vaunt and swagger of such leaders as Pope to the steady perseverance of M'Clellan, are glad to have an opportunity of once more doing him the justice which his countrymen were inclined to refuse him. Another mail may place him in a situation of another kind; but the educated and conscientious officer has now shown the Union the difference between a real soldier, in the hour of need, and the vain "self-made" Generals who have been thrown to the front by a score of influences with which professional fitness has had nothing to do. We learn that in Kentucky an important advantage has been gained by the Confederates, and that a very extensive capture of prisoners has been made, and also that the retreat of the invading army was conducted with perfect order, although, of course, it was necessary to flavour the telegrams with sensational polysyllables for the public of New York. . . .
Our revenue return is, all will hear with pleasure, and many with surprise, most satisfactory. Certain advocates of America who hoped that a black balance-sheet would appear to strike a chill upon the hearts that refused to be exalted by Mr. Seward and General Pope must be sorely disappointed at finding that, though the "War for Empire" has injured us in one way, it has largely benefited us in another; and that the North has come as an excellent customer, though not for the articles it was accustomed to apply for.