Foreign and Colonial NewsThe Illustrated London News, vol. 42, no. 1199, p. 422.
April 18, 1863
By the arrival of the Inman steamer Etna we have telegrams from New York to the morning of the 4th inst.
The Federal accounts of the partially successful attempt of Commodore Farragut to pass the Port Hudson batteries have at length seen the light. The Hartford, the flagship, accompanied by the Albatross, advanced to the attack, followed by five other steamers. The Port Hudson batteries opened upon them, and an engagement ensued, which lasted from ten o'clock at night until daybreak on the next day (Sunday). The Hartford and the Albatross passed safely. All the other vessels were driven back, except the steamer Mississippi, which grounded immediately opposite Port Hudson, and was blown up by order of her commander. Sixty of her crew were killed or missing. Upon the other vessels ten men, including Commander Cumming, were killed and thirty wounded. Confederate accounts state that only two men in the Port Hudson batteries were wounded. Fears are entertained by the Federals lest their two isolated vessels fall a victim to the three steam-rams in the possession of the Confederates.
The canal opposite Vicksburg is abandoned, the Confederate cannon commanding two-thirds of its length.
General Sherman's expedition to the rear of Haines' Bluff, by way of Sunflower River, has returned to Young's Point, having failed in accomplishing its object. The obstructions placed in the river, and sharpshooters along the shore, rendered an advance impracticable.
The Federal General Gilmore reports that he encountered a body of 2000 Confederates in Southern Kentucky, and drove them in confusion across the Cumberland River. He took 400 prisoners. His own loss only amounted to thirty.
The Confederate General Forrest reports that he visited Brentwood, in Tennessee, burnt the bridge, took all the property and arms, and captured 800 prisoners, including 35 officers. Brentwood is nine miles from Nashville and Franklin.
The correspondence of the New York Evening Post states that the Federal soldiers in the occupation of Pensacola burned the town when ordered to evacuate it by Colonel Dyer, their commanding officer. Both men and officers are represented to have been in a state of great demoralisation. Colonel Dyer in vain attempted to stop the work of destruction.
The privateer Florida has captured and burnt the ship Star of Peace, from Calcutta, for Boston. The Florida has also captured another American schooner. She was chased by the Vanderbilt, off Barbados [sic] Barbadoes , but escaped.
President Davis is reported to be suffering from an abscess in the eye, by which it is feared he will lose his sight. He lost the sight of one eye some years ago.
The people of the Confederate States are suffering from want of food, while yellow fever has appeared in the extreme south of Louisiana. It is feared that it will appear in New Orleans, which has been free from it since 1858.
The Charleston Courier reports the arrival and departure of a number of steamers, and asserts that, notwithstanding the blockade, Charleston is enjoying a larger direct foreign trade than she ever had before.
President Lincoln has appointed the 30th inst. as a day of fasting, prayer, and self-humiliation.
The captain of the captured steamer Peterhoff has laid the facts attending her capture before Lord Lyons, who, it is reported, will make a formal demand upon the Government for the release of the vessel and indemnity to the owners.
The American Congress has carved a new territory out of Oregon, Dacotah, and Washington, to be called Idaho. It embraces 4 degrees of latitude and 13 degrees of longitude. It is very rich in mineral wealth. A very few years ago no white man resided within the territory. It now contains a numerous mining population.
The New York Legislature has passed a bill providing that only foreign creditors should receive interest on the State debt in coin; others will be paid with paper.
The State election of Rhode Island has resulted in the success of the whole Republican ticket.
General Butler was received by the "Loyal League" at the New York Academy of Music, on the 2nd inst. The address was delivered by the Mayor. General Butler, in his reply, advocated the extermination of the "rebels," the confiscation of the estates of the planters and their partition among the soldiers of the Union. He was particularly bitter against British Government and aristocracy, and said that at the time of the Trent affair it was, perhaps, wise not to provoke England; but he thanked God the country was now getting into a condition to remember that case. He advised retaliation for the depredations of the Alabama and the Florida, and recommended that non-intercourse with England be proclaimed, so that not an ounce of food from America should get into an Englishman's mouth until those piracies were stopped. He also advocated the prohibition of the export of gold to England.
An engagement has occurred on the Bear River, Washington Territory, between 200 Federal troops and 500 Indians. After four hours' fighting nearly the entire band of Indians was killed, 420 of them being left dead on the field. This band of Indians had murdered many miners and emigrants on the overland route.
During the month of March 200 gold, silver, and copper mining companies were formed in San Francisco to develop the mines in California, Nevada, and North-Western Mexico. Their nominal capital was over 80,000,000 dols.