Early on Wednesday morning following the battle at Bull Run, thousands of crows passed over Reading, Pa., their course evidently being in the direction of the scene of carnage in the South. It is a fact that carnivorous birds are thus attracted at great distances by battlefields and the scent of human gore.
A soldier in one of the Kentucky camps says the motto with them is: "United we sleep, divided we freeze."
A sergeant in the 56th New York Regiment, some time since, disposed of his wife, a buxom Swiss women, to a captain in the same regiment, for a pecuniary consideration. The captain has now got sick of his bargain, and, mean man, wont pay anything; and the case has got into the New York courts. The woman dont seem to care which man she has for a husband.
The Rebel prisoners taken describe a funeral at Corinth, to bury the rations given them of rotten Texas salt beef and hard bread. It comes rather tough for the bloods of New Orleans, Beauregards "Crescent Legion", to live as the rest of the regiments have to.
It appears that Norfolk was lately taken by Gen. Wool, it was surrendered by Col. Lamb, and at the same time the ram Merrimac was blown up.
The correspondent of the Philadelphia Press with the Mississippi fleet writes: "Troops suffer more from snakes, lizards, scorpions, gallynippers and wood ticks than from disease. Insects and reptiles are thus classed: one lizard equals five scorpions; two scorpions equal one gollynipper, one gollynipper equals one snake; one snake equals one gollynipper; two scorpions and one lizard equals one wood tick."
What is the difference between a drummer boy and a pound of meat? One weighs a pound, and the other pounds away.
A Pleasant Punishment - A few days since an invalid soldier at one of the hospitals in Washington got intoxicated, and, as a punishment, was stripped and sent to bed, where he was obliged to remain for three days. During the time some of the benevolent ladies who attended the sick, supposing him too ill to get up, mitigated his punishment by setting by his head and fanning him.
Novel Punishment - A soldier at Port Republic recently stole an old yellow gown, a scarf and a piece of carpet. General Milroy made him put on the gown, tie the scarf around his neck, lay the carpet across him arm and march through the camp. The result was a general consent of the soldiers to let womens clothing alone.
A recent letter from Beufort, S.C. says that quite a number of horses have died recently at Hilton Head. The writer says that he knew of fifteen., one of which was examined, and the paunch contained one hundred and fifty eight pounds of sand. For the want of salt, it is supposed the horses had licked up the sand on account of its being impregnated with saline particles, received from sea distillation.
The wife of a Massachusetts soldier, who was taken prisoner at Balls Bluff, suffered great alarm at the report that he was to be exchanged for a rebel. "I wont have him," cried the woman, "I love Tom, and wont have him exchanged; I do not want a rebel husband." A friend corrected the poor womans misapprehension; the absent husband was finally released, and she learned that for once, "exchange was no robbery."
Hon. Henry J. Raymond had a brother in one of the New York regiments, and went in pursuit of that brothers remains. The circumstance is very funny. Several days ago Mr. Raymond received the following telegram: "Your brothers corpse is at Belle Plain." He hastened to the army as quick as steam could carry him, to perform the last office of affection. Arriving at Belle Plain he was greatly astonished to find his brother, not only alive, but in vigorous health. The original message had been: "Your brothers corps is at Belle Plain."
Father Quinn, chaplain of the First Rhode Island Regiment, is a wit as well as a priest. At a recent visit to the gallant 69th at Fort Corcoran, while examining the evidence of the hard labor with the pick and shovel of these true soldiers, he said: "Why they talk of Southern chivalry, but it cant hold a candle to Northern shovelry."
The most sudden change of base recorded in the war is that of a party of Maine soldiers, who made a frying pan of what they supposed to be an empty bombshell, and were surprised by an explosion which scattered the provender, but fortunately injured no one.
Gen. Buells baggage train, which arrived at Louisville the other day, was twenty miles long, and contained eighteen hundred wagons and ten thousand horses.
The Chicago Tribune of Saturday narrates this incident: "A gentleman from Milwaukee with his daughter, visited Camp Douglas yesterday, but could not gain entrance. Through the gateway, much to his astonishment, he espied his son, in ragged butternut uniform, so disguised he could scarcely believe it was his son. The boy had left Wisconsin for the South five years ago, and enlisted in Arkansas. The father told his boy (now probably twenty three years of age) that he had a good home for him, and good food and clothes - plenty of everything - if he would take the oath of allegiance and come home. If not, that he must never call him father. The boy will take the oath at the first opportunity.
A touching scene is related as transpiring in a Philadelphia hospital recently. Some benevolent ladies had distributed ice cream to the invalid soldiers, and all gladly partook of the refreshment, save one young, pale, handsome boy. His eyes were closed, and one of the ladies observing him, whispered "the poor little fellow is asleep; we must not disturb him." "No, maam, I am not asleep," he answered, in a silvery voice, full of sweetness of innocence and boyhood. "Well, my little fellow," continued the lady, as she drew nearer, " are you fond of ice cream?" "Very much so," he replied. "Didnt you see me place this on your little table?" reaching for the plate of cream. " oh, yes," he answered, tremulously, "but I shut my eyes and cried to myself." "Cried, my child! Why, what made you cry, my dear?" " oh, madame! If you will pull the quilt down a little you will see." The lady did so, and found that he had no arms. Both of them he had lost in battle.
The occupation of Fairfax Court House alternately by the Federal and Confederate forces in Virginia, has caused the almost entire dismantlement of the Episcopal Church at that place, so renowned for its antiquity; and the soldiers of both armies, when encamped there, spent much of their time in converting the wood work of the sacred edifice into souvenirs for themselves and friends. The Church of Fairfax Court House was built by Lord Fairfax, and the pulpit and alter were constructed in England. In this church, and at this alter, George Washington was married. The alter has been nearly all cut away, and it is mostly from material composing it that the pipes are made by the souvenir seekers.
A government examination into one of the horse contracts in Missouri produced the fact that out of a lot of four hundred and eleven horses for which one hundred and twenty six dollars a head was paid, seventy six were sound, five were dead, and three hundred and thirty were either aged, stifled, ringboned, spavined, blind, foundered or had the heaves.
A Connecticut soldier writes home that the Commissary at Annapolis has given the boys so much mule meat that the ears of the whole regiment have grown three and one-half inches since their arrival at the Maryland capital.
There is in Wheeling a mule known as "Tom", remarkable for his great coolness under fire. He has been wounded six times, has a bullet hole through each ear, a Minie ball shaved off his tail close to his body. At the battle of Cross Keys a ball entered his hip and came out the middle of his back, but he soon recovered and was ready for duty again.
A revolting spectacle is already presented on the battlefield of Antietam. The earth is washing away from the shallow trenches used for graves and the bodies of buried soldiers are appearing on the surface in various parts of that vast graveyard.
Steel vests, capable of resisting a rifle shot or bayonet thrust, and weighing about 3 1/2 lbs. Each, to be worn under ordinary clothing are now being manufactured in great quantities by a company in New Haven, Ct.
No person is living in the town of Belmont, Mo., where a battle was fought some time since, the stench from dead horses preventing people living within two miles of the town.
A Dutch Pass - An amusing story is told by some Dubuque troops of the "Iowa 1st", about the changes which a certain password underwent about the time of the battle of Springfield. One of the Dubuque officers whose duty it was to furnish the guards with a password for the night, gave the word "Potomac". A German on guard, not understanding distinctly the difference between Bs and Ps, understood it to be "Bottomic", and thus, on being transferred to another, was corrupted to "Buttermilk". Soon afterward the officer who had given the word, wished to return through the lines, and approaching a sentinel, was ordered to halt, and the word demanded. He gave "Potomac". "Nicht right - you dont pass mit me dish way". "But this is the word, and I will pass". "No - you stan"; at the same time placing a bayonet at his breast in a manner that told Mr. Officer that "Potomac" didnt pass in Missouri. "What is the word then?" "Buttermilk - damn you." "Well then, Buttermilk, damn you!" "Dat ish right; now you pass mit yourself all about your piziness." There was then a general overhauling of the password, and the difference between Potomac and Buttermilk being understood, the joke became one of the laughable incidents of the campaign.
Liquid Fire as a Weapon of War - Some experiments were recently tried at the Washington Navy Yard with an apparatus for the ejection of liquid fire, which to all intents and purposes is the famed Greek fire revived, the secret of which has been lost. The chemical composition of this fire may not be the same, but its effects are as terrible as those attributed to the inextinguishable fire of the Greeks. The composition and the apparatus for ejecting it are the inventions of Professor B. F. Greenough of Boston, who, though for many years nearly blind, has pursued his chemical investigations with unabated zeal, until he has produced what promises to be a terrible auxiliary to warfare. The experiments were made under the direction of a Board, consisting of Capt. G. V. Fox, Asst. Secretary of the Navy, Capt. Dahlgren, Capt. Wainwright and Lieut. Badger. A target was erected upon a platform fifty feet long by thirty feet wide, the target being made of solid oak timber three feet in thickness. The fluid was ejected in an inert state from a pipe 3/16ths of an inch in diameter, and was thrown some thirty to fifty yards before it reached the target. At a distance of several feet from the nozzle the fluid ignited, expanding to a diameter of two feet, with an intense combustion, which covered the target and the platform with liquid fire. The fire was apparently inextinguishable, burning readily on the water and consuming the target. It emitted dense fumes of smoke which darkened the atmosphere and would have suffocated any human being who had come within its influence. The experiment was quite successful. We understand that experiments have also been made with shells filled with this liquid, and with great success. The composition, the secret of which is known only to the inventor, promises to be a very effective auxiliary of war.
Lieut. W.G. Raymond, of the Eighty sixth N.Y.V., and his assistant, have been doing a very effective business in breaking up resorts of infamy, where soldiers and bad characters most do congregate. During the past week they have searched a great number of establishments and have recovered over $1500 worth of Government property - such as uniforms, blankets, shoes, etc. pawned by soldiers for "tanglefoot whiskey". They have also destroyed a large quantity of the poison. A number of petty gambling halls have been broken up, and descents were also made upon two or more prominent ones.
The following paragraph from the Richmond Examiner will be read with interest, as relating to the use of armor by our soldiers at the battle of Shiloh: "Among the trophies exhibited here are several shields taken from the bodies of men and officers, in which they were enveloped from neck to hips. In one of these was an indentation made by a Minie bullet, three fourths of an inch deep, showing that the invention is really effectual defense against shots striking the body. The shield is so arranged that it's weight is upon the shoulders, being adjusted there by iron bands or suspenders, and is made of steel. The officer from whom the one in question was taken was killed by a ball to the head."
A few days ago Col. Baker arrested a Mrs. Hewes and her little daughter in Washington, and made them disgorge eleven canteens of whiskey from under their crinoline, all of which was intended for the Rebels and which was consequently seized. Mrs. H. confessed that she had been engaged in the traffic a long time and had made a good deal of money by it.
A Pet Chicken in Camp - A letter from Gen. Hooker's army tells the following: "There is a private soldier who owns a pet pullet, which has escaped, with its owner, all the perils of battle thus far, and which is quite an aquisition to the chicken fancier who has carried him along with him, wherever he has been, since last summer. She is now laying vigorously, furnishing her proprietor with a nice large egg almost every day - four or five a week, certainly. 'Biddy cackles, sings, struts, scratches and lays, all alone, and seems to have a very good time by herself. She is a fine specimen, and is quite a pet among the 'boys' who take good care of her.
Secretary Stanton is a wag withal - as witness the following:
A man with a patent armor, patriotically anxious the government shall buy, entered the Secretary's office.
Secretary: "Has this been examined by a board of officers?"
Secretary: "Then I propose a test myself; put it on and I will have you shot at."
Patriot: "Some part not protected might be hit!"
Secretary: "No dangerof that sir, Col. Berdan never misses."
Patriot: "I don't consider that a fair test!"
Secretary: "I do, and I don't think much of a man who declines a test that he is willing to subject my soldiers to. No sir; you can't sell patent safety contrivances to this department - but if you will bring an invention here which will push our armies on to the rebel forces, I will buy it. Good morning, sir!"
An Indiana chaplain selected for singing yesterday, the hymn
"Show pity, Lord; oh Lord, forgive; Let a repentant rebel live."
He had scarcely uttered the last word of this line when a private soldier in his congregation cried out: "No, Lord, unless they lay down their arms."
Saratoga is furnishing some implements in the present war. Hon. I. Blood, of Milton, Saratoga county, has received an order from Boston for a large number of hunting axes, to be furnished to a Massachusetts company of flying artillery. They are to weigh about two pounds, to be well made, ground sharp, well polished and stamped "Yankee Doodle", and are to be able to cut a secessionist from the top of his head down the whole length of the backbone at a single blow. Maj. Blood received a large order from New Orleans, some time ago, for the same kind of instrument, but refused to furnish a single blade. He could not be seduced from the lofty, patriotic stand he had taken.
An iron 36 pounder, which has a history, was captured at Vicksburgh and has been sent to Washington. It was cast in France in 1768 and was brought to this country by Lafayette in 1777. It did good service in the Revolution, in the second war with England, and was used in the Texas war by a company of volunteers from New Orleans, who assisted the Texans in achieving their independence.
Hard bread, or as it is generally called in camp, "hard tack", is
the soldier's food on a campaign. It comes in square wooden boxes on which
different makers put their various brands. One day a lot of boxes of peculiarly
hard crackers arrived in the camp of the Third New Jersey. Several of the
boys were wondering the meaning of the brand on the boxes which was as
Various interpretations were given, but all were rejected until one individual declared that it was plain enough - "couldn't be misunderstood."
"Why how so?" was the query.
"Oh!" he replied; "that is the date when the crackers were made - six hundred and three before Christ!" (603 B.C.)
We noticed yesterday the ingenious dodge practiced by a female peddler to the soldiers camps across the river, who attempted to smuggle flasks of whiskey in her bosom, passing them off as the natural development of her "maternal fount". Today a female pie peddler attempted to cross with a quantity of her edibles and the guards thinking the pies presented rather a corpulant appearance and were extremely heavy, proceeded to lift the crusts, where, imbedded nicely in cotton, between the crusts and the tin pie plates were found flasks of whiskey containing perhaps a pint and a half each.
The War Department was made dramatic Saturday by an Irish woman of Amazonian size who came to present Secretary Stanton the American flag pulled down by Col. Miles at Harper's Ferry when that post was surrendered to the rebels. "How did you secure this, my excellent woman?" "Sure, sir, I just lifted my clothes and wrapped it around me here, just as they flocked into the parade." The Secretary, after thanking her as her devotion deserved, ordered $50 to be paid to the brave woman.
The most ingenious contrivance of the war for smuggling liquor to soldiers is a tin vessel made to fit the middle portion of the body, and composed of four sections, each of which is capable of holding a gallon and a quarter. This extensive and unseemly bustle gave a certain Mrs. Yett, bound for Alexandria, such huge proportions as to attract the attention of the guard. A search was instituted resulting in the discovery of the above described piece of mechanism, each section of which was filled to its utmost capacity with "rot gut" whiskey. The delivery was borne with fortitude and the party is doing "as well as can be expected". In addition to the above, Mrs. Yett had on her person fifteen bottles filled with the same chemical.
In Washington the other day a number of drunken soldiers partially buried a drunken companion, further gone than themselves, who was however subsequently rescued by the Provost Guard. They had impressed several contrabands to dig the grave.
The officers and men of the Forty Seventh N.Y. Volunteers presented to General Gillmore on Tuesday a magnificent eagle, caught in Ossibaw Sound last spring. The bird is of the species named by Audobon the Washington sea eagle and pictured by that author on the first page of his work as the most noble of the feathered tribe.
Killing of tall men in this war is going to make the next generation short, they say. We are afraid the next generation will also be "short" of funds to pay the enormous debt we shall leave them.
For the benefit of those who cannot find "Copperhead" in the dictionary,
we give the following analysis:
O pposition to war
P eace on any terms
E nmity to the Union
R ecognition of the C.S.A.
H atred of the Government
E arnest sympathy with the traitors
Army shoes made for the western soldiers were inspected the other day at Cincinnati. They were found to be made with paper innersole, then filled with wood, and very neatly covered with sole leather. They were returned to the speculative manufacturers.
The Washington Star states that in the recent stampede of horses from Camp Stoneman over one thousand animals, valued at $145 each, were drowned in the Potomac.
It being a matter of surprise how the rebel prisoners in camp at Chicago obtained money and other articles, a stricter watch over everything sent in was instituted. The first article that came in was a plump, fat turkey. In the centre of the dressing was a vial with $50 greenback corked in safety. Afterwards cakes similarly fixed out were found.
Simon Cameron, in 1860, told Jefferson Davis that if the South seceded he would plant corn in the streets of Charleston, S.C. To keep his promise Mr. Cameron went to Charleston last spring, planted some corn in a street, and put a soldier to watching and attending it. The other day he got a package of four ears of corn by Adam's Express as the fruit of his enterprise.
Upon careful calculation it is estimated that President Lincoln on Monday, in two hours time, shook hands with about seven thousand persons, men, women and children of all ages, rank and races.
Some of the rebel prisoners who have come North were without shoes or hats. A party of them going through Albany had to cross the river on ice, barefooted.
Before the New York election last fall, Gov. Seymour sent out a cannon to his friends at Watertown, Mass., to beused in celebrating his election. It didn't arrive until after he was defeated and his "friends" refused to pay the freight on it, and left it at the depot, where it still remains.
A young lady named Payne, recently arrested for her southern proclivities in St. Louis, was released through the intercession of a bugler in the Federal army to whom she was engaged to be married. He said that fact showed she was in favor of the Union.
Soldiers at New Berne, N.C. say that the only way any liquids will be able to reach them in boxes from home is to mark them "Davis' pain-killer." In that case the inspecting officers don't confiscate and drink them up.
A squad of deserters who came over on Thursday night were fired upon furiously, but strange to tell, not a man of them was injured. After they reached a place of safety some of our men inquired how it was they all escaped. "Oh" said the spokesman of the party, "Them fellers fired too high to hit us!" "Yes, yes" returned the picket officer, "but why did they fire so high?" "Oh, why don't you know?" answered the rebel, "well it's because they are coming themselves tomorrow night!"
While the troops were moving on Wilmington a corporal asked permission to enter a house at the roadside, saying it was the residence of his parents and the home of his youth. He entered the house and was soon clasped in the arms of his mother. "John" said she, "your brother was here yesterday, he stopped as the Confederates marched past here." That mother had a son in each army.
One of the Herald's correspondents with General Sherman's army found himself out of writing paper on his journey through Georgia. About a dozen reams of unsigned Rebel currency of various denominations were captured at Milledgeville and the ingenious reporter wrote his narrative on the backs of the notes. He was somewhat surpised at the conclusion when, upon reviewing his manuscript, he found that he had used up over a million dollars.
A soldier named Morse, who enlisted in an Iowa regiment and served two years, leaving a fine farm when he departed, returning home last week to find that his wretched wife had converted all his property into money and eloped with a neighbor, Wm. Crew, taking their children. He tracked them to the north part of the state and found the woman in great destitution, deserted by her paramour. Recovering their children, he left the guilty wife to suffer the just penalties of her crimes.
A German in Dubuque, Iowa went to war thirty months ago, leaving behind him a good looking wife. At Vicksburg he was shot and supposed killed, and his wife married a Dubuque miller a few months after. Last Saturday morning the supposed dead man came home again, told his story, and after a long discussion got his wife back by paying $25 to the second husband.
The contract for dead horses in the Federal army has just been let for $60,000. The horses' shoes are first pulled off, which are worth about 4 cents, the hoofs fetch 8 cents, the tail 4 cents, the tallow is not worth much, the hide is worth something, the shinbones are sold to be converted into cane heads, knife handles, etc. It is said that in the trail of Grant's army are the carcasses of 6,000 horses. Two-thirds of the men have not changed a garment since they started and have marched, fought and slept for thirty days and nights in the same clothes. They are fighting it out on the line without the aid of a clothes line.
A soldier in Burnside's corps was recently digging sweet potatoes and found four thousand dollars in silver. He very generously divided it with his company, and that company has since been "matching" quarters and half dollars as though they had been pennies.
A woman occupying a large brick house painted lead color on this side of Columbia, Tenn. was detected in making signals to the rebels. As a punishment she was forced to remain in the building throughout the fierce cannonading and it must have been an anxious as well as a dangerous time.
A private letter from West Point, Va. narrates an exciting adventure
which befell a negro scout in the employ of our forces and his shrewdness
in escaping from the enemy. His name is Claiborne and he is a full blooded
African, with big lips, flat nose, etc. He has lived in the vicinity all
his life and is therefore familiar with the country, which renders him a
very valuable scout. On Claiborne's last trip inside the enemy's lines, after
scouting around as much as he wished, he picked up eight chickens and started
for camp. His road led past the house of a secesh doctor named Roberts who
knows him and who ordered him to stop, which, of course, Claiborne had no
idea of doing, when the doctor fired on him and gave chase, shouting at the
top of his voice. The negro was making very good time toward camp when all
at once he was confronted by a whole regiment of rebel soldiers who ordered
him to halt. For a moment the scout was dumbfounded and thought his hour
was come, but the next he sung out -
"The Yankees are coming! the Yankees are coming!"
"Where? where?" inquired the rebels.
"Just up in front of Dr. Robert's house, in a piece of woods," returned Sambo. "Dr. Roberts sent me down to tell you to come quick or they'll kill the whole of us."
"Come in - come into camp," said the soldiers.
"No, no," says the cute African, "I have got to go down and tell the cavalry pickets and can't wait a second." So off he sprang with a bound running for dear life; the rebs discovered the ruse, chased him for three miles, and he running six, when he got safely into camp, minus his chickens, which he dropped at the first fire.
During the war about twenty Confederate prisoners were at Fort
McHenry, stored away in a fodder loft under guard. One morning Capt. Ned
Bridges was playing an innocent game of cards when the sick roll was sounded
- the signal for ailing soldiers to report at the surgeon's office to be
"Lieutenant" said Capt. Bridges, turning to a young soldier, "answer sick call for me and let me finish this game. Go down there and personate me and tell the doctor you want another box of his liver pills."
The obliging lieutenant marched out and proceeded with other soldiers, under escort of the guards, to the surgeon's office. When the name of Capt. Bridges was called, the lieutenant's face appeared at the little office window.
"Doctor" he began, "them pills you gave me helped me considerably, but I want another box. I think another box will fix me up all right."
"Didn't all them pills cure you?" asked the doctor abruptly, looking over his spectacles at the bogus Bridges.
"No, but another box will fix me, I think."
"Well, well," said the doctor half to himself. "I'll have to change the treatment on you."
Thereupon he picked up a graduated glass, and from various bottles mixed the most infernal mess that mortal ever saw. The lieutenant shuddered.
When the villainous compound was made up the doctor stirred it vigorously and viciously, and handing it out, said: "Drink that."
The lieutenant took hold of the glass. Cold chills ran down his spine. "Doctor" he stammered, "I'd - I'd er heap rather take the pills."
"Drink it!" stormed the doctor, and in the excitement the medicine went down on the lieutenant's throat. When the lieutenant returned to the fodder loft he was very glum. When the game of cards grew monotonous Capt. Bridges turned and asked: "Lieutenant, git them pills?"
"Well," said the captain, "you needn't be so snappish about it. What did the doctor say?"
"He said he was going to change the treatment on me, and if you don't git well it ain't my fault, for I've taken the nastiest damned dose for you that I ever saw."
The following paragraph from the
Louisville Journal makes us thankful that we don’t live where “government horses
A startling revelation has been made. Col. Fairleigh has been reliably informed that the large number of horses which die daily are hauled out upon the commons every night and skinned and dressed by some mercenary scamps, and the meat offered for sale in the morning market. This nefarious scheme has been in operation for some time and it is believed that many of the fine steaks offered for sale and purchased as such were nothing more nor less than horseflesh taken from diseased animals which were the property of the government. We are well aware that the story looks incredulous, but the proof is too clear to be denied.
Jeff Davis has ordered the release of all criminals in state prisons provided they join the Confederate army. If they acquiesce it will add 3,000 to their ranks of the very worst description of cut throats and outcasts.
In one of a lot of old army canteens recently purchased by a hardware speculator in Memphis was found the other day a roll of Treasury notes amounting to $2,000.
Lieut. Alden tells a good anecdote which we find in the Guardian Journal of one of the prisoners taken at Chickamauga. Johnny Reb was looking at one of our guns and remarked that he didn’t think that the Yanks would use them big guns much longer. “Why not?” inquired the Feds. “Because”, said he “the Confederacy is getting so narrow that you’d fire clear over it and hit your men on the other side.”
One of the ways in the Potomac army of punishing a man found intoxicated is to bury him all but the head and label him thus, changing the name with each case: “Here lies the body of George Mars who fell dead drunk Nov. 17, 1863”.
A soldier in the army writes and says: “One night, dark and rainy, Colonel S____ and I were coming from Marietta to Camp Orchard, where the __ Ohio State Militia were encamped, being on a rampage after Morgan. We were riding at full gallop and I told the Colonel that we had passed a sentry. He wheeled and returned to the sentinel, asking him why he did not order us to halt and give the word. The fellow was busy at something and cried out, “Hold on till I load my gun!”
The Washington Star says that an officer who came up from City Point the other day had with him an ugly looking specimen of the genus canine which he guarded very carefully. The dog, it appears, was a great pet with both our own and the rebel pickets in front of Hancock’s Corps. The dog had been trained to carry messages between the pickets. A rebel paper would be placed in his mouth and he would scamper off to the Union lines, deliver up the paper, and return with a Northern paper. He has been entrusted with packages of coffee and tobacco and has always delivered them promptly and safely. The rebels, however, tried to make use of him for transmitting information from one portion of the lines to another, and the four legged messenger, having been caught with one of these messages, was confiscated and brought North.
Some of the boys with Butler’s corps recently found a large sum of gold buried in the house of a widow, now dead, who earned it by selling fish in Richmond. There were eagles, half eagles and quarter eagles, besides pieces of large value and quantities of silver coin. Some say there was $20,000 and others not more than $1,000. At any rate there was great scrambling and no attempt at fair division, the finder being so astonished at his good luck that the spoils were gone before he could recover his senses.
The war has produced some strange alienations. Two Kentuckians, father and son, were on a train in Indiana last Sunday. The father was a rebel prisoner, the son was a Federal guard on the platform of the car. The old man, seeing his son, presumed to take more liberty than the rules allowed and put his head outside the door. His son hastily advanced, piece at the shoulder, with a sharp “Get back there you old rebel!”
Of 800 horses recently sent to Gen. Butler from New York for cavalry service in his department, 700 were condemned as worthless.
We are asked fifty times a day when we think the war will end. We must admit that we are somewhat at a loss for an answer. However we will relate a dream that a friend of ours had upon the duration of the war which may throw some light upon the subject. He dreamed that he awoke from a sleep of fifty years and found himself upon the south bank of the Rapidan. He saw at a distance a corporal with seventeen men and a wheelbarrow. He approached and asked the corporal what this little gathering meant. “This” replied the corporal, “is the Army of Northern Virginia.” “Where are the Yankees?” inquired our friend. “They are on the other side of the river”, replied the corporal. “They have the advantage of us in numbers and transportation as they have twenty-one men and two wheelbarrows, but we expect to get the advantage in position, will whip them and then the war will end.” As this is the best information we have about the probable duration of the war, we give it free.
The other day as the President and a friend were sitting on the steps of the House of Representatives the last session closed and the members filed out in a body. Abraham looked after them with a serious smile. “That reminds me,” said he, “of a little incident when I was a boy, my flat boat lay up at Alton on the Mississippi for a day and I strolled about town. I saw a large stone building with massive walls, not so handsome though as this; and while I was looking at it the iron gate was opened and a great body of men came out. ‘What do you call that?’ I asked a bystander. ‘That’, he said ‘is the state prison and those are all the thieves going home. Their time is up.”
It may not be generally known among those of our citizens who have friends and relatives in Gen. Grant’s army that the plan now generally adopted when burying the dead is to place in the grave with the body a sealed bottle containing a paper on which is written the name and other particulars respecting the deceased.
A spiritualist in Boston asserts that Semmes, the pirate, is guided in his work of destruction by the spirit of the notorious Gibbs, who was hung some 30 years since, and adds that when Gibbs has exhausted his venom Semmes himself will come to an untimely end. We wish either Gibbs or the Navy Department would hurry up that untimely end. At present it looks like a remarkable case of longevity.
The horse of the late Gen. Wells is now at Boston under treatment for his wounds. Unflinchingly he bore his rider through the severe fighting in Virginia from the first Bull Run battle until Gen. Wells was transferred to the Shenandoah Valley. He has passed through twelve battles in the Shenandoah since April. At Cedar Creek, after receiving two wounds, the horse still bore his brave rider until he fell pierced by that fatal bullet.
A few days since, while the United States and the rebel flag of truce boats were holding a conference at the entrance of Charleston harbor, a most beautiful phenomenon appeared to spectators standing upon the bluffs of Morris Island. A rainbow brightened into form on overhanging clouds, its ends resting on the water on either side of the communicating ships. It was a sublime picture. The spectators were all impressed and regarded it as a significant omen.
During the past few months several respectable young girls of our city, as well as others in the western part of our state, have mysteriously disappeared from their homes and no trace could possibly be ascertained of their whereabouts, notwithstanding the most diligent search was made for them. Recently, however, some startling developments have come to light through the arrest of a young girl named Jennie Thompson at Utica who was attired in male habiliments and went under the assumed name James Thompson. Upon searching her some enormously rascally documents were found, making startling revelations. There was a manuscript copy of what purported to be the constitution and by-laws of the "Knights of the Secret Circle." In this document the object of the Circle are said to be to kidnap and send to New York City houses of prostitution young and virtuous girls. It is stated that after their being kidnapped a drug is to be administered to them and their action under its influence will determine whether or not they are virtuous. If not they are to be released. (We may say here that there is no drug which will determine any such question.) The manuscript is signed by twenty-four persons, members of the Secret Circle. A. Cary of Albany is president, and Cary and one Patrick Farrel are directors. Other names among the twenty-four are those of Theodore and Hiram Andrews and their wives. Appended is a list of nine young girls whose abduction is considered feasible and advisable. One of these, Esther A. Parks, who disappeared May 10th, and Miss Barnett, daughter of Hon. James Barnett, both of Oneida County. Also the names of three men (Gerritt Smith, C.D. Miller, ___ Stewart) who have been marked for vengeance. This is one of the most damnable organizations ever concieved by wicked minds.
On Wednesday night preceding the President’s assassination a little deaf and dumb girl in our institution got up in her sleep, went to a classmate, and after rousing her, spelt with the manual alphabet “Lincoln is shot”. In the morning the somnambulist knew nothing of the circumstance till informed of it by her friend in the presence of others. The incident would probably never have been recalled but for the sad emphasis which after events gave it. It now seems one of these case of prescience which so often arise to puzzle the mental philosophers.
A good story is told of Jeff Davis. Some time ago the rebel authorities ordered all horses that could be found in the neighboring country to be impressed. A squad of cavalry engaged in the execution of this order met Jeff riding in his carriage and ordered him to "get out" and give up the animals. Jeff refused. The corporal insisted. Finally, to cut short the parly Jeff inquired "Do you know who I am?" "No", replied the soldier. "I am President Davis" said Jeff. "Drive on" said the corporal, "I thought you looked like a damned old postage stamp."
The unpretending wayside cottage owned and occupied by Mr. Bennett where Sherman and Johnston met to arrange the terms of surrender, is suffering at the hands of relic gatherers. The table on which the memoranda where written has been cut to fragments and is in the hands of soldiers. The house is being carried off piece meal. After the cottage the fence and trees will go and in due time there will be an excavation to mark the spot where the disappearing cottage now stands.
The rage for relics in this country is something astounding. A respectably dressed man was noticed the other day putting in his pocket a brick from the wall in front of Mr. Lincoln's house and this is but one of ten thousand follies. The entire stairway upon which Colonel Ellsworth was killed in Alexandria has been cut into chips and carried away. The tree at the foot of which Sickles shot Key in Washington has been barked and cut until it is dead. The oak tree under which General Grant talked with Pemberton and arranged the terms of the surrender of Vicksburgh has been annihilated and recently a party dug into the ground for ten feet for the roots of the historic oak. An elm tree which Abraham Lincoln planted stands in front of his old house in Springfield. Of course it will be torn in pieces and destroyed.
Farmers in eastern Pennsylvania are hiring labourers among the rebel prisoners and deserters at the low price of eight to sixteen dollars per month. The Government is furnishing these men free transportation.
A clown connected with a circus now exhibiting at Indianapolis, Ind. was recently arrested and lodged in jail, charged with some sort of complicity with the assassination of the late President.
A soldier who served in Sheridan's cavalry relates the following incident, illustrative of the affection of the horse: It was one of those forced marches when they had driven back the enemy and had been in the saddle for several consecutive days and nights, that this trooper availed himself of a temporary halt to slip from his saddle and stretch himself upon the turf - his horse, meanwhile, browsing in the immediate vicinity. He had slept for some little time when he was awakened by the frantic pawing of his horse at his side. Fatigued by his long ride, he did not rouse at once, but lay in that partially conscious state which so frequently attends great physical prostration. Soon, however, the faithful animal perceived that its efforts had failed to accomplish their object, licked his face, and placing his mouth close to his ear, uttered a loud snort. Now thoroughly awake, he sprang up and the horse turned for him to mount. He saw for the first time that his comrades had all disappeared and that the enemy were coming down upon him at full gallop. Once mounted, the faithful beast bore him with the speed of the wind safely from the danger, and soon placed him among his companions. "Thus" he added with emotion, "the noble fellow saved me from captivity and perhaps from death."
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