Sherman has advanced thus far without serious opposition, and is leaving a track of desolation behind him.
He has captured Milledgeville and Gordon, and came near bagging a Methodist conference and the rebel Legislature at the former place.
One of his columns is near Augusta. Another has cut the Georgia central road at two points, one of them at Gordon, the junction of the Milledgeville Branch.
He has not attacked Macon, but simply made a feint in that direction, and swiftly swung his columns to the eastward, along the line of the Georgia Central.
Sherman, at the present time, must be very near Augusta. Will the rebels be able to concentrate a force to intercept [fold] might not be able to send any portion of their army from Virginia in time to impede or harass the march of Gen. Sherman through Georgia. But from such points Wilmington, Charleston and Savannah, from the rebel garrisons all along the seaboard of North and South Carolina; a force of perhaps twenty thousand men might quickly be gathered on the line of the Savannah before Sherman can reach it. Add to these the militia of Georgia, who are under Cobb, and the militia of the adjoining States – constituting a force of certainly twenty thousand in number. – These forty thousand men might hope to obstruct Sherman’s advance, in his long march, for days, if not for weeks, during which time they might suppose Hood would be able to get round into western part of Georgia, in Sherman’s rear. Granting that the rebels undertake this, we have reason to believe that it will be met by counter moves by Grant, Porter and Foster, against Petersburg, Wilmington and Charleston. We have never doubted that perils environed Sherman’s path, but we have faith that by the co-operation of our other armies in the field and his own genius and splendid army, he will cut through all obstructions. The following is a portion of the orders issued by Gen. Sherman, before he struck out on his mission of peace:
“Gen. Howard, commanding the [fold] corps, and Gen. Slocumn, the left wing, viz: the 14th and 20th Corps.
The cavalry under Gen. Kilpatrick will start habitually start at 7 A. M., and make about 15 miles per day. They will live upon the country, but not to destroy any property in any localities where they were unmolested.
Cases of hostilities by the citizens are to be followed by relentless devastation. Horses, mules, wagons, &c., are to be appropriated freely by the cavalry and infantry and foraging parties. Negroes who are able-bodied and can be of service to the several columns may be taken along, but each army commander will bear in mind that the question of supplies is a very important one, and his first duties are to those who bear arms.
“The rebel Congress is in a fearful state of excitement, and convulsed with intestine jars, and their Senator Foote (more familiarly called Hangman Foote) has been arrested and put under bonds to keep the peace for challenging the renegade Irishman, John Mitchell.
New York has narrowly escaped a terrible destruction of life and property at the hands of rebel emissaries. On Friday night last, twelve of the hotels, Barnum’s Museum, and a considerable amount of shipping, were fired simultaneously by means of phosphorous. – The damage to the St. Nicholas was about $5000.
A woman has been arrested on suspicion of being one of the incendiaries, who arrived in that city on Thursday evening, from Baltimore, and took rooms at the St. Nicholas. That night, just before the fire broke out there, she left and went to the Laffrage House; stayed a short time and left just before the fire broke out there. She then went to the Metropolitan and engaged a room, the fire breaking out there very soon afterwards. Although closely questioned she refused to disclose the nature of her business here. Certain papers, found in her room, pointed strongly to a man stopping at the Laffrage House, who was recently discharged from Fort Lafayette on the ground that he was a British subject. – He was very nervous and excited when taken, and disclaimed any connection with the affair. The manner in which the fires were produced showed a pre-concerted plot. In the hotels the bed clothes, trunks, &c., were covered with phosphorous; matches were also scattered in the beds; the fires were then set and the rooms locked. As in the July riots, the thieves swarmed about the hotel doors, ready to rush in and plunder when the fire got under way, but the timely appearance of the police prevented this portion of the programme from being carried out.
A large expedition of eight transports of troops and two batteries has gone up White river.
The Canadian Government has refused the application of the St. Albans raiders to sent a message to Richmond to obtain evidence in their behalf.
A serious breech in the Erie Canal has suspended business for the season.
Gen. Banks has been assigned to his old command in the Department of Louisiana.
A late arrival from New Orleans states that General Canby is rapidly recovering from his wound. An expedition of Union troops attacked and defeated a rebel force in the Lafourche district, La., resently. The rebel Governor of Louisiana is reported to have organized ten negro regiments at Shreveport, for rebel service. The rebel General Buckner is said to have a force of 10,000 men at Alexandria, La.
→ A peace party is said to have been formed in Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi, for the restoration of those States to the Union.
→ Hood’s rebel army on Saturday made an assault upon works at Columbia, Tenn., and was badly repulsed. Hood is now supposed to be moving towards Georgia to co-operate with Breckinridge.
→ The rebels say that the Yankee “vandals” have destroyed Governor Brown’s house. What will they say of the attempt to burn up a city full of women and children?
November 23, 1864.
I have returned once more to soldier life – to bean soup, hard tack and sow-belly. I would use a more modest term for the latter article, but I have become convinced that no other name will ever be used by the soldier of this generation for hog-meat. Chaplains, Colonels and Generals, all speak of their sow-belly as though it was never known by any other name, and the next dictionary will not be complete without this word, and some others that I might mention, which this war has developed.
I have not yet found my regiment. – It is off with Gen. Sherman, far away in “Dixie’s land,” and by this time teaching the chivalry the shortest and surest way to peace. Atlanta has been considerably scorched, and the railroads leading to it pretty well wiped out. – We now hold the Atlanta railroad as far as Dalton, which is now our outpost in that direction.
A new camp has been formed here at Chattanooga, called “Camp Detachment,” which is made up of the odds and ends of those left behind belonging to Sherman’s army. I found here eight representatives of the 78th regiment, viz: Douglas Chapman and R. L. Maynard, of Co. I, Andrew Wilson, and J. R. Hainline of Co. C, Henry Galbraith, of Co. H, and two members of Co. B, whose names have not been mentioned to me, and also Dr. Wm. H. Githens, our Assistant Surgeon. – Andy Wilson was yesterday detailed to drive an ambulance, and all the others except Galbraith were sent to the hospital as unfit for duty. We are divided off into our respective corps, divisions and brigades, and we already number several thousand, and hundreds are ar- [obscured] convalescents and furloughed men are pouring in, and from appearances we will soon have an army right here big enough to take Richmond. The rumor to-day is that we will go to Bridgeport in two or three days, where we will go into winter quarters until the opportunity comes that we can be sent to our respective commands.
We have had some very severe weather lately. It commenced raining about election time, and continued almost without intercession until day before yesterday, when it cleared up blustering and cold. We have as yet only our little dog tents to protect us from the wet and cold, and scarcely a stick of wood to be found. I walked yesterday over a mile and picked up every little stick or chip that I could find and was rewarded with just enough to boil me some coffee for dinner. There were many who wrapped themselves in their blankets and laid in their tents all day, and eat their rations without cooking. It is rather hard on the new conscripts and substitutes. I heard one of the latter class last evening cry out in his agony. “I wish to God the man I come for had his nine hundred dollars back again, and I at home.” But the great majority of these new soldiers take matters very philosophically, and quite good humoredly. A veteran noticing a little verdancy in one of the conscripts, remarked to him –
“You haven’t been in the service very long, have you?”
“Thunder, yes. Me and my mess have been out over a month and a half, and not one of has had a furlough or seen a bit of butter.”
This conscript was consoled with the remark that he would be very apt to see the Johnnies before he would see a furlough or any butter.
I learn that three of our old resigned Lieutenants of the 78th have been drafted and that they were sent on to join Sherman’s army before it left Atlanta, vil: Graham, of Co. A, Taylor of Co. B, and Thompson of Co. G. – There is now in this camp among the conscripts a resigned Lieut. Colonel from Indiana, who performs his duty in the ranks as cheerfully as any other private.
My fingers are too cold at present to write more. When we get moved to Bridgeport, and get our cabins erected, with comfortable fire-places and plenty of wood, I will give you another rambling, disjointed sort of a letter, like unto this. Adieu!
J. K. M.
Aurora, Ill., Nov. 30, ’64.
Editors Macomb Journal:
In your last issue I find a communication in answer to your short notice, of the previous week, entitled, “Tender-footed.” The writer says he did not leave the Church because a blessing was invoked in aid or the President elect, but because the officiating minister “evinced an overweening desire to drag the issues of the past political campaign before the congregation through the instrumentality of prayer.”
Permit me to say, Mr. Editor, in reply, that the minister who thus stirred the tender conscience of the writer, prayed for but one other thing that could give offence. And that was the abolition of slavery, according to the confession of the writer, therefore, the minister who prays for this desirable end, is dragging political issues before his congregation. He evidently feels ashamed (as he justly ought) that he manifested so little manliness as to get up and leave the Church, and now seek to give some decent justification for the act.
Now let me ask the writer if it is any credit to either his head or his heart, that he cannot hear the greatest sin of the world, and the principal cause of all the bloodshed and sorrow over our land, prayed against, without running out of the Church?
Let me ask, again, if he supposes that those who remained, and approved of the prayer, have not consciences fully as much enlightened as his own? and are they not fully as competent as he, to decide what is, or what is not, proper to be prayed for in the Church of God?
The writer says he is “somewhat given to visiting Church.” No one could be more pleased to think so than myself. I sincerely trust he will not cease being so “given,” until he shall have become fully enlightened, and be able to discover his full duty. And if they prayer, in any manner, helps him on this end, the one who offered it will not consider his labor lost.
It is time, sir, that the milk and water religion, that can wink at the most flagrant sin of the world, should be parrified.
And it is time, also, that men who make no pretentions to religion in theory or practice, should be taught the very useful lesson, that it is not for [fold] in the performance of his work.
It is a very convenient weapon with which to muzzle the ministry, to cry, Politics! and was so tender, that outbreaking sins cannot be prayed against, or talked about, in the pulpit. But, thank God, that weapon is almost powerless. It is shorn of its strength, and the man who now attempts to use it, is only fighting the stern decree of an Almighty Providence. Slavery, like all other evils, must and will die – yea, it is already dead. And a few northern sympathizers, no matter how sorrow stricken, cannot resurrect it.
If slavery is a great moral evil, has anything to do with politics, it is only in connection with a party that depends upon it for power, and if that party should see fit to ally itself with any of the other great social evils of the nation, it would serve its purpose equally well to cry, Politics, when this evil was in danger of invasion.
We do not take it, therefore, sir, that every writer, or any of those who left the Church, on the day mentioned, did so, because they were hurt with conscientious scruples. They felt tender on another point, “Ichabod,” has been written on the strong arm of their strength, and their party been weighed in the balances and found wanting.
Very respectfully yours,
George W. Have.
Death of Union Prisoners. – The Chicago Times a few days ago gave a list of 300 Union prisoners who have died under the privations and cruelties of the prison at Andersonville. It also publishes a protest of the rebel surgeon against such cruelties to prisoners.
→ Fortunately, the horse thief, Hart, who escaped from jail last week, has been re-captured, and is now wearing a full set of ornaments belonging to the county.
The Illinois Black Laws.
The effort to expunge from the Statute Book, during the coming winter the infamous Black Laws, of this State, is gaining favor. Although we have heard of these laws, we presume very few, comparatively, have any idea of their true character, and which still have the validity, if not force, of law, in our State.
The Black code was first passed in 1819 for the benefit of the slaveholders in the southern part of the State.
The following are a few of the acts:
Sec. 9. If any slave or servant shall be found at a distance of ten miles from the tenement of his or her master, or the person with whom he or she lives, without a pass, or some letter or token, whereby it may appear that he or she is proceeding by authority from his or her master, employer or overseer, it shall and may be lawful for any person to apprehend and carry him or her before a Justice of the Peace, to be by his order punished with stripes, not exceeding thirty-five, at his discretion.
Sec. 10. If any slave or servant shall presume to come and be upon the plantation, or at the dwelling of any person whatsoever, without leave from his or her owner, not being sent upon lawful business, it shall be lawful for the owner of such plantation, or dwelling house, to give or order such slave or servant ten lashes on his or her bare back.
South Carolina may be challenged to produce anything more purely malignant than these sections; for though there are more cruel laws in that State, they are part of a system of terror and oppression which were thought to be, and perhaps were, necessary to overawe a slave population that exceeded in number the free. But in Illinois such a law is simply a piece of bigotry and spite, and is infinitely more disgraceful to this State than is the code of South Carolina to her slavery crushed community.
Another law, proceeding upon the presumption that slavery is the condition of every colored person who cannot prove himself free, considers that all colored persons attempting to enter the State are escaping from servitude, and throws all possible obstructions in the way of their settlement. It requires bonds to be filed in the sum of $1,000 each that the negro shall not become a charge upon the county as pauper. – We give the fifth section in full, as a monument of absurdity and infamy together:
Sec. 5. Every black or mulatto person who shall be found in this State, [fold] required by this chapter shall be deemed a runaway slave or servant, and it shall be lawful for any inhabitant of this State to take such black or mulatto person before some Justice of the Peace; and should such black or mulatto person not produce such certificate as aforesaid, it shall be the duty of such Justice to cause such black or mulatto person to be committed to the custody of the Sheriff of such County, who shall keep such black or mulatto person, and in three days after receiving him shall advertise him at the court house door, and shall transmit a notice, and cause the same to be advertised for six weeks in some public newspaper printed nearest the place apprehending such black person or mulatto, stating a description of the most remarkable features of the supposed runaway; and if such person so committed shall not produce a certificate or other evidence of this freedom within the time aforesaid, it shall be the duty of the Sheriff to hire him out for the best price he can get, after having given five days’ previous notice thereof, from month to month for the space of one year; and if no owner shall appear and substantiate his claim before the expiration of the year, the Sheriff shall give a certificate to such black or mulatto person, who, upon producing the same at the next circuit court of the county, may obtain a certificate from the court stating the facts, and the person shall be deemed a free person unless he should be lawfully claimed by his proper owner or owners hereafter.
Until the year 1853, (says the Chicago Tribune,) there was no other penalties or prohibitions upon the migration of colored persons to Illinois than the above, which were declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, for the reason already stated, and there were only 5,436 colored persons in the State to 850,000 whites. The Legislature of 1853 turned its attention to the subject with a ferocity that would have done honor to Arkansas or Madagascar. It enacted that if any negro or mulatto, bond or free, should come into the State and remain ten days, he should be fined ten dollars, and sold at auction for the fine to the bidder who would pay it for the shortest period of his service, and that if he did not then leave the State, the process should be repeated till he would leave.
This barbarous law, it is said, has remained a dead letter in all but two or three counties, nor do there seem to have been more than half a dozen executions of it in all the State, and the journal from which we quote affirms:
“There is not a county in the State where public opinion would now tolerate an attempt to enforce the law, by selling a black man for the crime of setting foot on our soil.”
Which we hope is true, but don’t know. At all events, the duty of the Legislature is clear. The Union party of Illinois cannot afford to be held responsible for the countenance of these laws. And not merely the Union party, not merely the State, but the Union itself is made odious and contemptible by the toleration of such legislative barbarity as this. Away with it forever!
On Thursday, 1st inst., by the Rev. Mr, Nesbit, Mr. Edward McDonough and Miss Amanda Buzan, all of this city.
We hope Ed. Will have better luck in married life than he had in Idaho. – We wish him and his fair bride a double share of happiness in their pathway through life.
By a middle aged man, who has had fifteen years experience as a Clerk, And Salesman, a situation in a Dry Goods or other Mercantile Establishment. The best of references given. For further information apply to Hugh Ervin, Esq., Macomb, Ill.
Arrest of Rowdies. – Four of the worst boys in town, whose names in brief are, Bob. Davis, Jim. Kendrick, Scott Hopper and George Wells, were arrested on Tuesday, and tried for disturbing a civil assemblage at Campbell’s Hall, on Saturday evening last and fined one dollar and costs. We are glad that a move has been made towards breaking up this nest of young rowdies, who are in the habit of prowling around churches, and places of amusement, and making every noise imagineable, insulting ladies, and disturbing the congregation. Another thing which appears to be on their list of deviltries is the breaking of fences, windows, blinds, dry goods boxes, removing signs, ringing door bells, &c. – This thing must be stopped, and we are assured by the authorities that it will be.
We want it understood that we do not mean the four above mentioned boys as the sole performers in the deviltry mentioned, for there are several others, and, if anything, still worse boys with beards on their faces, who are engaged in the same innocent amusements. The “four” are bad enough, but there are plenty more who should be muleted in a sum sufficiently large for them to understand that there is not only a God in Israel, but protection for peaceable people in the city of Macomb.
The Good Templars Exhibition. – The exhibitions of the Good Templars on last Thursday and Saturday evening passed off very pleasantly, and to the satisfaction of the people who attended. The hall was crowded both nights, and the first night numbers failed in getting admittance. The audience seemed well pleased at the performance, excepting some few rowdies, who appeared disposed to deride everything that was done, in order to show – as we suppose – their raising and good manners. We hope the Good Templars will keep the thing going, as there is no better method to while away our leisure hours the coming winter, than by attending such exhibitions as were given last week, providing good order can be preserved. The Association proposes to give an exhibition tomorrow (Saturday) evening for the benefit of the Sanitary Fair to be held in this city, commencing on the 21st inst. We hope to see a crowded house.
We learn that a Sanitary Fair, will be opened in this city, under the auspices of the “Macomb United Sisters of Benevolence,” on Wednesday Evening, Dec. 21, upon a grand scale, and with better prospects than have attended any past one in this vicinity. – The ladies “ask the assistance of every citizen in the county. Let each one give their mite, and thus many will be relieved who must otherwise suffer. – Through the bountiful harvest and unexampled business prosperity Providence has furnished the means, and the miseries caused by war give the occasion, for the greatest liberality. Let every neighborhood unite with us and raise a sum worthy the county of McDonough.” They ask for contributions of useful and fancy articles, wood and coal, provisions, clothing, in short, “any thing that can be made available, from a beef to a broom, will be accepted. –
The Society offer to any one contributing the best shirt, made by hand, of good material, and nicely done up, a Sixteen Dollar Photograph Album. – For the second best, an Eight Dollar Album.
The Shirts to be sold for the benefit of the Society, and to be of the following dimensions:
Length of body, 36 inches; Length of Sleeve, 21 to 23 inches; Length of Wristband, 9 inches; Length of Neckband, 14 to 18 inches; width of Neckband, 1 inch; width of Wristband, 2 1-2 inches; length of bosom, 18 to 23 inches, with three plaits on each side.
Now let the public open their generous hearts and contribute their mite towards alleviating the wants, suffering and miseries of our sick and wounded soldiers, who lay upon the field pale, weak and emaciated for the want of such assistance as these ladies propose to offer. Turn your purses wrong side out – contribute from the household and the store – select from the best and most valuable articles – use no stint give and continue to give without murmur, and you will receive the blessings of thousands and tens of thousands of our life-guards at the front.
→ S. J. Clarke & Co. have just received a large and well selected stock of toys and notions for the holidays, consisting of nearly every nick-nack imaginable to please little children, and some of a larger growth. Also, a large stock of gift and juvenile books, photographic albums, etc.