March 20, 1863
The papers during the past week have been filled with exciting news of evacuations, forward movements, &c., but thus far no forward movement has been made, although the indications are that warm work may be expected before many days.
LATER. – The Chicago Journal of Wednesday evening, states that Yazoo City has been captured by our forces.
Another Secesh Pow-wow.
A fellow by the name of Schofield made an out and out secession speech at Campbell’s Hall on Tuesday evening last. This Schofield is from Hancock county, and is one of the bosom companions of Joe Miller, whose letter will be found in another column of the Journal. We knew nothing of the speech until it was nearly over, but we heard enough of it to convince us that the speaker was a good representative of Jeff Davis. The speech was made up of oaths and curses upon the Government, and endearing words for our “southern brethren.” He asked in pathetic terms “What have we against our Southern brethren, and why do we wish to whip them?” The Copperheads in different parts of the room answered “Nothing, Nothing,” and we “don’t wish to whip them.” The speaker also announced, time and again, that he was opposed to the war – opposed to whipping the rebels, and in favor of compromising with the rebels, and the Copperheads all said “amen.” – This speech was the most bold plea for the rebel cause that has yet been made in this county. The Copperheads here have been in the habit of declaring that they were in favor of the war, but were only opposed to the manner in which it was being carried on. But Schofield, fresh from the Copperhead Legislature, came out boldly and threw off the mask and declared that he was opposed to the war in toto. His doctrine was rather strong for his audience as a whole, but individual expressions of approbation could be heard to the most treasonable utterances. On the whole, we think that this speech will be productive of good. Many Democrats were disgusted with the vulgar jests, oaths, and treasonable utterances with which the speech abounded. Many are not yet prepared to sell themselves, body and soul, to Jeff. Davis, and such speeches as that of Tuesday evening, are well calculated to open their eyes, and give them a view of the awful precipice of treason upon which they are standing. Every man that heard the speech went away satisfied that Schofield was a traitor, and some we know went away resolved to leave the traitorous party calling itself Democratic.
“Destroying Democratic Presses.”
The Eagle of last week frets over the fact that one or two Copperhead Journals have been destroyed by an outraged people and advises that “reprisals be made” upon the wealthy men in the Republican party, and thinks if this was done that no more presses would be destroyed. Now we can tell the Eagle how all this difficulty could be avoided, and that too, without destroying the property of leading Republicans, for that process would be attended with considerable danger, and some of the Copperheads might get hurt. Just let all such papers as the Eagle quit preaching treason and come up to the support of the Government, and there would be no danger of mobs destroying presses. The presses that have been destroyed have been preaching treason and opposing the Government until the loyal people, no longer able to submit to the outrage, tumbled the traitorous concerns out into the street, and for this the Eagle thinks that the property of law-abiding men ought to suffer. One thing is certain, the Eagle is in no danger of being mobbed. Its influence is so little that loyal men only laugh at its impotent ravings. Don’t be scared little Buzzard, there is no danger of your becoming a “blessed martyr.”
Is it Loyal.
The Eagle claims to be a loyal sheet, yet in the last issue of that paper we find no less than thirteen articles, occupying some three columns, condemning the Government – finding fault with the legislation that is necessary to carry on the war for the Union – endeavoring to get up resistance to the Conscription law, and trying to prove that the soldiers are in favor of compromising with the rebels. Every sentence of these articles is calculated to weaken the Government and give aid and comfort to the rebels. On the other hand the most powerful magnifying glass would fail to bring to light one single sentence or word in condemnation of the rebels. The rebels by the most inhuman Conscription law that has ever disgraced the statutes of any country, have forced almost every able bodied man in the South into the rebel army, and Abbott has no fault to find. But the moment that the Congress of the United States passes a Conscription law, which is as just and honorable as such a law can be – the Eagle hastens to condemn and counsel resistance. The rebels force their negroes into the rebel army, and use them to shoot down loyal white men, and the Eagle is silent – there is nothing in such a course that is worthy of condemnation. But the moment that the Government proposes to use loyal black men to shoot down white traitors, that moment the Eagle raises a howl of indignation, and launches forth upon the Administration a torrent of abuse.
The rebels can hang every man in the South who loves the old flag, and is not willing to bow down and worship King Jeff. and it is all right. – But should the Government arrest and put in prison a violent traitor in the North, the Eagle is ready to tear the Government itself to pieces if necessary to prevent “illegal arrests,” as it terms the arrest of traitors. In fact, the rebels have done nothing from time that they fired the first shot upon the National Flag at Fort Sumter down to the present time, that has been very culpable in the estimation of the Eagle, while no act of the Government, in repelling the traitors has escaped its condemnation. The Eagle has invariably, praised the Generals in the army, that have been in favor of conciliating rebels, while it has abused and slandered those Generals who have shown a desire to conquer a peace and subdue the rebels. It has filled its columns with the traitorous utterances of such men as Vallandingham, Richardson and Goudy, while it has studiously avoided publishing the speeches and letters of those loyal Democrats, Logan, McClernand, and Rosecrans. In view of all these things, can the Eagle have the impudence to lay any claims to loyalty. If such papers are loyal to the Government, then Jeff. Davis is a saint of the first water, and Stonewall Jackson is a pattern of patriotism and loyalty.
We trust the Union men will not forget the approaching Spring Elections. Let the Union men in each township see to it that good loyal men are nominated, and then see that every loyal voter in the township is at the polls on election day.
We understand that the Copperheads in the different townships are working secretly with all their might, expecting to carry every township. Let the Republicans hold meetings at once, and put in nomination good men. The present if ever is a time when every man who loves his country, and hates its enemies, should be at the polls. The Copperheads hope through the absence of the soldiers to get all the offices into their hands.
Remember that a Copperhead triumph achieved will encourage the rebels, and dishearten our brave soldiers in the field.
→ Republican legislation says that the chances of dying in battle, or staying at home with family and friends , is worth not more than three hundred dollars. The same legislation has fixed the same price on the head of negro slaves. – Eagle.
The above is a fair sample of the arguments used by the secesh journals to induce their dupes to resist the Conscription law. If blood shall be shed in the enforcement of that law, the guilt will rest upon those traitors who publish such articles as the above.
Singing Low. – The Copperheads who have been so loud in their threats of resisting a draft in this section are singing exceedingly low since the passage of the Conscription law. They don’t have half as much to say about “dying in their tracks” as they did a few weeks ago. All they want to make pretty good Union men of them is to be drafted into the army.
“We are all Jeff Davis Men Now.”
The following letter is furnished to the Springfield Journal by a member of Co. A, 10th Illinois Cavalry. The letter seems to be written in reply to one rebuking the writer for his secesh doctrines. St. Albans, the place where this Copperhead letter is dated, is in Hancock County, in this State:
Helena, Feb. 18, 1863.
Editors Journal: I have obtained, by special favor, from one of our boys a copy of a letter received by him lately, and will forward it to you without comment, save that I pledge my honor that it is a true copy of the original letter now in my possession for the purpose of copying:
“St. Albans, Illinois, Jan 23.
“W. A. Wilmoth – Sir: Yesterday I received a letter from you dated Helena, Jan. 4th. You appear to have your abolition niger thieving ire up against me because I in a former letter said ‘I wish you were at home.’ Now I want you to understand I don’t want you up here nor nowhere else on top of the face of the earth – I hope you and the rest of the whole damned Black army will go to Hell the short way – I want you to understand that things have changed here since you and the rest of you pack of thieves left. You contemptible hireling of old nigger Abe — pretend to call me a ‘traitor to my country’ – understand me I am opposed to Abe Lincoln’s Government and am in for Jeff Davis up to the handle, help it if you can. Try to scare Joe Miller, God damn you I’ve got the sand. We are all Jeff Davis men now. Every man that has got the sand, will throw off on the Lincoln Government now after the proclamation sitting the niggers free – Ill’s is bound to go with the South, and you and your party who are fighting against slavery will have to hunt your holes. You had better try to and get your black uncle abe to give you enough ready money to pay Joe Anderson for that $10 coat but Joe is willing to give you $10 to get rid of you – I enclose your letter back to you – I want to hear no more from you, but when you get out of the war if you want the wind chewed out of you just throw your damned trifling carcass in the way of JOSEPH MILLER.”
The gentleman to whom this letter was addressed is a member of the same company to which I belong, viz: Co. A, 10th Illinois Cavalry.
F. W. SEDGWICK.
Honor to Whom Honor is Due. – The officers and privates of the 84th Regiment have purchased a Sword which cost $125, to present to Col. L. H. Waters, as a mark of their appreciation of his soldierly qualities. Capt. Ervin, as one of the committee appointed by the Regiment, purchased the Sword. Col. Waters, by his bravery in the field, and by his gentlemanly bearing towards his men, has made a warm friend of every man in his regiment.
From the 84th.
Near Murfreesboro, March 7.
The 84th Regiment Illinois Volunteers, is still in camp near Murfreesboro. It is now commanded by Major Morton, Col. Waters being, during the absence of Col. Gross, in command of the 3d Brigade. The morning report of this regiment for this morning is as follows:
Field and Staff, 9
Company Officers, 22
Enlisted Men, 398
Field and Staff, 3
Company Officers, 8
Enlisted Men, sick and wounded, 298
Present and absent 738
So you will see we are gaining gradually in numbers.
We understand that the disclosure of the S.B., published in the Eagle, has had rather a bad effect on the Copperheads in this county. The rumor got a float in some way that the S.B. was a huge monster, that breathed fire and lived on live coals, and that its advent in this county was to be marked by the utter extermination of the whole Copperhead tribe. It is reported that the faithful at Blandinville have been troubled “of nights” lately by visions of a terrible monster, with ten heads and forty horns, each horn representing a six barrelled revolver. We don’t know where this “animule” is located just at present, but we suppose the Eagle will keep an eye skinned and let us know its whereabouts. The Copperheads in other parts of the county, it is rumored, have, on different occasions, smelled brimstone and seen unmistakable signs that the S.B. is around.
Court Week. – The Spring Term of the Circuit Court commenced its session in this city on Monday last, Judge Higbee presiding. The Court House being considered unsafe, Campbell’s Hall has been fitted up as a Court Room, and makes a very convenient place for its sessions. The Docket is very light, and the term will be short.
The Unconditional Union men of each township are requested to meet at their respective voting places, on Saturday, March 28th, 1863, at 2 o’clock, p.m., for the purpose of nominating suitable candidates for town offices. It is hoped and expected that the voters of each township will be in attendance promptly at the hour named.
By Order of Committee.
A Big Row. – Another big row occurred in this city on Tuesday last. – Dave Chrisman, the same man who shot at Mr. Brooking last fall, came into town and soon got into a muss. J. Q. Lane, City Marshal, undertook to arrest him, when Chrisman drew a knife. This was taken away from him. He then got an axe and marched out into the street, and defyed the Marshal to take him. The Marshal then started towards him, when Chrisman raised the axe to strike. The Marshal then fired a pistol at him, but without effect. Chrisman then made for the Marshal and struck him three times without doing much injury. At once a crowd gathered and for a few moments it seemed that a general muss was inevitable. Chrisman was subsequently arrested and taken before Justice Withrow for examination. A jury was empanelled and after hearing the evidence, brought in a verdict fining Chrisman $3. We don’t know but this is justice, but it looks to us that such penalties for such offenses, is making a mere farce of the matter. If men are to be allowed to attack officers while in the discharge of their duties with murderous weapons, by paying a fine of three dollars, how long will it be before anarchy and confusion will prevail in Macomb. This man Chrisman is in the habit of quarreling and fighting, but through the influence of his friends always gets off with impunity. The quarrel as usual, started at one of the licensed whisky shops of this city, and just as long as our city authorities allow these hell holes to exist in our midst, just [obscured] will our city be disgraced by [obscured] as the above. – Many men, when sober, are peaceable and quiet, when under the influence of liquor are quarrelsome and factious. Abolish whisky and you abolish fighting and bloodshed.
Spring Has Come. – At last Winter and Mud have retired in disgust, and gentle spring with its balmy air and its singing birds has made its appearance. The few days of warm, pleasant weather has rendered mud navigation impassible for the present. If the weather continues pleasant for the next week the farmers can begin their plowing and wheat sowing. Good-bye Winter! All hail gentle Spring.
Eating House. – Our young friends Miller and Hillyer*, have opened an Eating House and Oyster Saloon on the South side of the square, in this city, and we trust they will do a prosperous business. Hillyer has served his country honorably in the field of battle, and lost an arm in the battle of Hatchie River, and now he proposes to serve his fellow men in supplying their physical wants. Farmers from the country wanting a lunch cannot do better than call on him.
[*Isaac C. Hillyer, Co. D, 28th Illinois Infantry Regiment. Born in Staten Island, New York, he was a carpenter in Macomb before enlisting on August 10, 1861. He was discharged for wounds on November 10, 1862. – Editor]
→ We learn from the Eagle, that the boys who stoned the train a week or two ago, have been arrested.