April 17, 1863

Macomb Journal

The Attack on Charleston.

            The attack upon the defenses of Charleston harbor by our iron-clad fleet commenced on Monday, the 6th inst.  Our gunboats, after battering away and being battered for some hours, found it impossible to pass the obstructions in the channel, and withdrew.  The Keokuk was sunk, two of the iron-clads were entirely disabled, and three others partially.  We presume the attack will not be renewed until repairs are made, though the latest rebel dispatches state that the bombardment was expected to be resumed at once.

Gen. Hunter’s troops are reported to be coming up in the rear of Charleston, which report we must discredit for the present.

The capture of Charleston, though evidently a most difficult matter, is not an impossibility.  The failure of the first attempt should not dishearten us, as it certainly will not our naval officers, who will now take a few days to repair damages, and make ready for another and more terrible attack.  And though a dozen attacks may prove unsuccessful, the next one may result in glorious victory.  Let us master our impatience, and trust to the judgment and gallantry of Dupont, Hunter and their gallant men.  Let us be mindful of the fact that they are just as anxious for success as we are.

The New South, of the 11th, says the fight at Charleston was renewed on the 10th, but with what result it could not ascertain.  It adds that Fort Sumter has probably been reached before this time.

Thursday morning’s papers say that the attack upon Charleston had not been resumed by our forces.


Northern Treason Aiders to be Dealt With.

            The Chicago Journal says, “We learn from Washington, that the Government contemplates the issuing of a general war order, to the effect that all men at the North who shall be found talking or publishing sentiments of a treasonable character, will be arrested and sent South through rebel lines, and that any person or persons in the North who shall be detected in acts of treason by giving actual aid to the enemy, as spies or otherwise, when arrested, will be tried by court-martial, and, if convicted, shot.

The order to this effect, recently issued by General Burnside, indicates that this plan for the silencing and checking of treason to the loyal States is about to be adopted.

This is the course the Government ought to have pursued from the start, and the sooner it adopts it now the better.   The first duty the Government owes to the country, in a time of war, is that of protecting itself from its enemies.


The Fate of the Copperheads.

            The result of the late elections and the terrible condemnation of the Copperheads by our brave soldiers in the field, shows plainly what is to be the fate of the Copperheads of the North.  It is an old saying that “Every dog has his day,” and we suppose the same is true with regard to snakes; at least it is most emphatically true of the breed known as Copperheads.  They thought to ride into power by opposing the war – by slandering the Administration – by crippling the Government, and by aiding the rebels.  But they have most signally failed.  An outraged and indignant people have risen up in their might and placed the seat of their condemnation upon the traitors.  Henceforth, to be known as a Copperhead will be more damning than was the title of “Tory” during the Revolution.


Hasn’t Heard from Connecticut.

            The editor of the Eagle on Thursday of last week had not heard from Connecticut we suppose or that in a large majority of the township and municipal elections the Copperheads were badly defeated – at least we judge from the fact that he did not inform his readers that there had even been an election outside of McDonough county.  In fact all the Copperheads hereabouts have been as deaf as adders and their faces as long as the most fanatical puritan in New England can boast of.  It is very evident that they feel decidedly bad – down in the mouth, and pretty much used up.

Abbott, have you seen anything lately of that “great reaction” that was sweeping over the North with such fearful speed, and which was to restore the Democratic party to place and power, and if so, how did it look?  Have you seen the S. B.’s?  Have you heard from Connecticut? and if so, what do you think of the general prospects of the Copperhead fraternity?


Black Law to be Tested.

            The Quincy Republican says a case involving the constitutionality of the Black Laws of this State, came before the Circuit Court, in session in that city, on Tuesday last.  Hon. O. H. Browning made an argument against the law, but Judge Sibley decided in favor of the law, and held the parties to answer – several colored people who had entered the State in violation of the statute.  The care will be carried to the Supreme Court.


From the 78th Regiment.

Camp near Franklin, Tenn.
April 3, 1863.

            Our regiment still remains here in the vicinity of Franklin.  Since the date of my last letter nothing of special importance or of unusual interest has occurred in the 78th, calculated to disturb its usual quietude.  Col. Benneson has returned to his regiment, and has assumed command of a Brigade. – Dr. E. S. McIntyre, Ass’t Surgeon, of Hancock Co., has resigned, and our friend and neighbor, Dr. D. M. Creel, of Industry, has in consequence been promoted to the position of 2nd Ass’t Surgeon.  Dr. Creel has been our Hospital Steward since the organization, and a more faithful and efficient man never filled a similar position.  Dr. Jordan, our principal Surgeon, I learn has returned to his home in Macomb, on a leave of absence for a few days.  I am afraid the Doctor will be forced to resign on account of a sprained ankle, which does not appear to improve in the least, although nearly four months has elapsed since the accident occurred to him.  Lieut. McCandless of Co. I, has offered his resignation, which will probably be accepted, as he has not been well for several weeks. – Our regiment has considerably reduced since our arrival in Tennessee; several are sick, some have died, and a number have been detailed for duty elsewhere.  Three out of every company have been attached to an artillery company in this brigade.  From Co. I, James Withrow, E. B. Rhea and John Pembroke were taken, of course with their own consent.  The several companies have also been required to furnish two each for a pioneer corps, which is commanded by Lieut. G. T. Beers, of Co. H.  I was in Nashville a day or two since and was informed by Dr. Kyle, who is on duty at Hospital No. 12, that all the sick in the Hospitals in that city who are not well enough to report for duty in 60 days, are to be transferred to hospitals in their own State.  John McClellan, of Co. I, who has been very low with typhoid fever, is among the list of those to be transferred to the Quincy Hospital.  There are doubtless many others of this regiment who will be taken to Quincy under this rule.

We continue to hear numerous reports of great destitution among the rebel troops.  Our cavalry scouts bring in a few prisoners almost every day.  A few days ago they brought in fifty, who declared of their own accord that they were not hard to take.  They preferred our rations to those dealt out by the Confederates.  There seems to be a growing confidence that we are now rapidly approaching the close of the war.  The recent patriotic demonstrations of the loyal portion of the Democratic party has done much to inspire us with this confidence.  Copperheadism in the North appears to be rapidly on the wane, and with the decline of the Copperheads dies the last lingering hope of the rebels.

According to present indications I think we will have no general engagement with the enemy [obscured] unless they should attack us, in which event we are ready for them.

J. K. M.


From the 84th Regiment.

Murfreesboro, Tenn.  March 28.

            EDITOR JOURNAL: — Having leisure I write again.  I left Nashville on the 4th inst., and am now at Hospital No. 1 at this place nursing Charley who has been quite ill.  I except to rejoin my regiment in a few days.  The regiment left to-day for the front without tents, the Col. in command of the Brigade, and Major Morton in command of the 84th.  Boys all well and hearty. – Have had good times since the fight in standing picket, throwing up entrenchments, playing quoits, ball and the devel generally.  You would hardly know them, for a dirtier, greasier set of men is not to be found.  Capt. Higgins is the only man in the regiment that keeps tidy and neat; you ought to see him.  Co. A. won’t follow his example however.

The regiment last pay-day sent home about $25,000.  Pretty good for only 400 men to do, considering that they paid the sutler.  They will in a few days be paid off again to March 1st. – There never was an army in better condition than this one.  In the best of health, undivided in sentiment, with the greatest confidence in Old Rose, they are confident and cheerful as to results.  The enemy shows himself in force, the length of our lines, and miniature battles are fought almost daily.  If the rebels keep feeling around Franklin much longer, the 78th may have warm work yet.  If they get a chance I hope they will play their hands well.

I do not think any decisive battles will be fought before we get to Chatanooga and there I think the rebel hordes with their Vicksburg army will try to overpower and crush us.  The rebels are in a state of extreme destitution and it is only a mushroom spunk that makes them still effective against us.  The truth is their army lives on corn-bread and sow-belly, and that in small supplies.  My own opinion is that their so-called patriotism will play clean out sooner or later, on an empty stomach.  I believe that we can whale anything with Old Rose, and for sometime past have been fearful that he would be sent Rappahannock-wards, where he would be sure to play out as all the balance have done yet.  I visited the late battle-field and gathered a handful of bullets &c., that I would send to the author of the Resolutions thanking the McDonough County boys for the part performed by them, and passed at your late Union meeting.  Who is he?  Have you got any men up your way who are hell on the Proclamation, and particularly so on the suspension of the writ of Habeas Corpus?  If you have send them down here as conscripts, and let them see their  “misguided brethering” in all their purity of character, and chastity of conduct, and I guess a few doses of the lousy be-vermined cusses will satisfy them if it does not satiate.  This army has a queer opinion of the rebels.  We all believe that when Jeff Davis dies, there will a staff appointment in the infernal regions.  We believe that those in arms against us should be hung up side by side, and the Copperheads of the North be made to do duty at their own expense, in keeping the birds from touching their filthy carcasses, that is, if there is any birds immoral enough to do such a thing.  I’d like to have a chat with the wives, mothers, sisters, fathers and brothers of those who compose the army, about the Copperheads.  To them the whole army says, be of good cheer, and mind not the chuckles, and smiles of joy of the Copperheads when they hear of disasters befalling us – when they hear that our loss is heavy – when they see our comrades coming homeward one by one broken down in health or perhaps wounded and crippled for life.  It may wring your hearts with agony to know that some of your neighbors gloat over your griefs; and laugh at your calamities.  But there is a better time coming.  When the Union is again restored, united and whole, as it certainly will be; when we can with safety lay our weapons down, we pledge the loyal ones at home, by all our love for country and for them, by the memories of our comrades who fell by the wayside, in the hospital, and on the bloody field of carnage, by what we have braved and endured, to commence the peaceful work of retaliating on the Copperheads for their misconduct and incipient treason – to make them hated and shunned by the good and true – to ignore them, and their very existence.  In short, we are coming home and that a good deal sooner than Copperheads want us.  This army is nursing its wrath for the especial benefit of the Copperheads at home.  Pick up a soldier anywhere and ask him if he would like to go through the war safe and return home, and he will say, “Yes.”  Ask him what he wants to return for, and the reply instantly is “To give the d – d Copperheads [obscured] a foretaste of the life to come.”  We don’t believe the Copperhead is mortally good enough to be a nurse in a nigger hospital; and if they get off in the other world with a slight touch of the infernal regions, shall believe it was effected by a sort of compromise with the devil.  The men who for such poor, ignorant, pusillanimous specimens of humanity as those who compose the head and front of this rebellion, would give up Government, and her darling institutions, forsake friends in their greatest straight for succor and support are men who will be, in “the true light of day” universally hated, spit upon, and contemned.  I hate them and so does the whole army, and every boy we lose by the gun of a barbarous savage and unrelenting “brother” adds but fuel to our hate.  If this army had in detail a guard to relieve St. Peter, who it is said does duty at the gates of the Celestial World, the guard would be instructed to pass none into that Elysium, unless the applicant could answer in the negative truthfully the following question, “Was you a Copperhead in 1862 and ’63?” * * *

Before this reaches you, Chauncy Case, Esq., will arrive at home.  Allow one of his company to say, that all though 55 or 60 years of age, he has endured all our long marches with patience, shared our hardships, and reluctantly returns home compelled to it by age.  He has “sand in his gizzard” and the boys hate to lose him.  Out of 20 of the boys of our Co. who were wounded, but 3 will return, the balance are discharged.

Jos. G. Waters.


Make Your Own Sugar. – G. W. Scripps, Esq., of Rushville, Schuyler county, called into our office a few days since and showed us a sample of sugar made by Mr. Hooker, of that place, that far excels anything of the kind we have ever seen.  This sample is from a lot of near one hundred pounds made from a twenty gallon keg of syrup.  Mr. Scripps assures us that any man who can make good molasses can make this sugar, and that it will yield from eight to twelve hundred pounds to the acre.  Mr. G. W. Bailey, on the East side of the square, has a quantity of the seed for sale, and we advise our farmers to plant none other.  Mr. Scripps, also, will send it free by mail for $1 per pound.



            From the residence of the subscriber, [?] miles south-east of Macomb, on Friday last, a Black Cow, with a white spot on her rump and a white tail, the brush being bitten off, and a scar on the left shoulder.  Any person giving information of the whereabouts of said cow will be suitably rewarded.

Macomb, April 17, 1863.


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