Foreign IntelligenceThe Illustrated London News, vol.41, no.1180, p.686.
December 27, 1862
By the arrival of the steamer Hibernian at Londonderry we have telegrams from New York to the evening of the 13th inst.
The main body of General Burnside's army crossed the Rappahannock on the 12th inst., and occupied the south side of the river and Fredericksburg. The Confederates have two lines of batteries--the first one mile to the south of Fredericksburg, and the second one mile to the rear of the first. As the Federals were crossing the river the Confederates opened fire from the first line of batteries, but the Federal batteries along the banks of the river silenced them in half an hour. As General Burnside intended to advance, a battle could only be avoided by the retreat of the Confederates.
The commander of the San Jacinto writes that the Governor of Martinique would not allow him to enter the harbour to watch the Alabama, and that he was obliged to move out one marine league. The Alabama escaped during a foggy night.
The secret naval expedition under the command of General Banks had not been heard from since it was seen off Cape Hatteras, moving southwards.
A volume of about three hundred pages has been communicated to Congress containing the correspondence of the Department of State with the foreign Ministers during the past year.
The following is an abstract of the despatches addressed by Mr. Adams to Mr. Seward:--
In June last Mr. Adams writes that the darling desire of the governing classes of England that America may be divided, though subdued in expression by events, remains as strong as ever. Mr. Adams writes, in October, that he has had an interview with Earl Russell, in which, referring to Mr. Gladstone's speech, Earl Russell said, with some degree of embarrassment, that it was not for him to disavow anything on the part of Mr. Gladstone, but that Mr. Gladstone had no idea in saying what he did that there was serious intention to infer a disposition of the Government to adopt a new policy. Earl Russell stated as guardedly as possible that Lord Palmerston and the other members of the Cabinet regretted Mr. Gladstone's speech, and it was still their intention to let the struggle come to its natural end without the smallest interference on their part.
Mr. Seward's recent communications to Mr. Adams are summarised thus:--
In June Mr. Seward writes that a list of purchases made for the Confederates in England, which list had fallen into the hands of the Federals, shows that the complaints made to Earl Russell fall short of the real abuses of neutrality committed in England in the very face of the British Government. The revolution is now approaching its end, and it is just at this moment proof becomes irresistible that if it had succeeded its success would have been due to the assistance derived from the English people. The President thinks it desirable the English Government should consider before the war closes what are likely to be the sentiments of England and America towards each other after its termination. In August Mr. Seward writes that a war with England could not fail to unite North and South. In November he writes that while European political parties are more hostile than ever to America, America herself is stronger to resist intervention than at any former period. Less than three years ago all England showed itself desirous of friendship with America, and a similar desire may before long recur. On the 3rd of the same month Mr. Seward states that the President is compelled to regard the destruction of ships by the Alabama as having been made by British subjects in violation of the law of nations. Legal proofs to support indemnity claims will be collected and transmitted as soon as possible.
Mr. Seward writes to Mr. Dayton, the United States' Minister at Paris, that America has a right to insist that France shall not make use of the war she is carrying on in Mexico to raise up an anti-American or anti-Republican Government, or maintain such Government in power. France having disclaimed such designs, America is bound to wait, and not anticipate their execution.
The despatches from Russia represent Prince Gortschakoff as desiring to see a termination of the war, as hopeless of the restoration of the Union, and yet regarding its disruption as a serious calamity for Russia. Mr. Cameron and Mr. Bayard Taylor, the Secretary of the Legation, represent the manner of the Czar and the Prince towards them as being cordial in the extreme.
Both Houses of Congress have passed the bill admitting Western Virginia as a State of the Union, and providing for the gradual but speedy emancipation of her slaves. The Governor of this region approves of Mr. Lincoln's proclamation of the 22nd of September.
The House of Representatives has refused to pass a vote of censure on the aforesaid proclamation of emancipation by a vote of 95 to 47.
Both Houses have passed a bill indemnifying President Lincoln for all arrests made and maintained in violation of the right to the writ of habeas corpus. In the House of Representatives, where the opposition was strongest, the bill passed by the vote of 90 to 45, which exhibits the relative strength of the Administration and Opposition parties in the present Congress.
The repairs of the Great Eastern are completed, and she will resume her trips immediately.
Large quantities of stores are being purchased in New York for shipment to the French army in Mexico.
A meeting had been held at the Produce Exchange, New York, for the relief of the distress in Lancashire. The Rev. Theodore Cuyler made the most important speech, in which he urged British and American philanthropy to meet half way and build up a new temple of reconciliation in which Americans and Britons could join hands once more and swear to be true to each other and to all principles of civil and religious liberty. The subscriptions in behalf of the Lancashire operatives are made chiefly in grain, but include more than 100,000 dollars in cash.
A "cold snap" having visited the Atlantic coast, the people of the Atlantic cities, the young, the middle-aged, and the ladies were enjoying the amusement of skating with as much abandon as before the commencement of the war.