From The Constitution, Wednesday, February 19, 1862 (volume 25, number 1260)

Fort Donelson taken

And 15,000 Prisoners !

Gens. Johnston and Buckner Captured.

Chicago, Feb. 15.

The following is a special dispatch to the Chicago Journal:

Two Miles from Fort Donelson,

February 14.

The attack on Fort Donelson commenced at 7 1/2 o’clock on yesterday morning by the land forces under Generals Grant, Smith and McClernand.

The fort is surrounded by high steep hills, heavily wooded and protected by two redoubts, trenches and rifle pits.

The rebels gave battle from their intrenchments outside the fort, but they were driven in after a severe battle and considerable loss on both sides.

Our loss is probably about forty-five killed and from one hundred and fifty to two hundred wounded.

Eight thousand troops and four gunboats arrived last night.

The battle will be resumed to-day.

Chicago, Feb. 17th.

Fort Donelson surrendered yesterday morning. Gen. Johnston and Buckner, with 15,000 rebels, are prisoners. Floyd, by his great experience, stole away with 5,000 men Saturday night.

St. Louis, Feb. 17th.

Dispatches from Gen. Grant to Gen. Halleck announce the surrender of Fort Donelson, with 15,000 prisoners, including Gens. Pillow, Buckner and Johnston.

St. Louis, Feb. 17th.

Further official advices from Donelson says that Gen. Floyd escaped during the night. The rebels in the Fort, denounce him as a black hearted traitor and coward.

The rebels are known to have had 30,000 troops, 15,000 of whom are prisoners, 5,000 escaped, the balance are reported killed or wounded or otherwise disabled. Our loss is not stated, but the slaughter in our ranks is mentioned as terribly severe.

St. Louis, Feb. 17th.

The casualties on the gunboats are as follows : “St. Louis,” 3 killed 2 wounded, including Lieut. Kendall. “Louisville,” 5 sailors killed, 4 slightly and 2 severely wounded, the latter having both arms shot off.

“Carondolet,” 4 killed, 6 badly and two severely wounded, including the pilot.

“Pittsburg,” 2 wounded.

The force en route to Fort Donelson had mostly arrived and located in the left. Gen. Lewis Wallace with the 8th Missouri and 11th Indiana, arrived Friday.

Washington, Feb. 17.

The following is received :

Cairo, Feb. 17.

To Hon. Gideon Welles :–The “Carondolet,” just arrived from Donelson, brings information of the capture of that fort by the land forces yesterday morning, with 15,000 prisoners, including Gens. Buckner and Johnston.

The loss is heavy on both sides. Floyd escaped with 5,000 men during the night. I go up with the gunboats as soon as possible. I will proceed up to Clarkesville. Eight mortar boats are on the way with which I hope to attack Clarkesville.

My foot is painful but not dangerous. The army has behaved gloriously. I shall be able to take but two iron clad gunboats with me, as the others are disabled. The trophies are immense. Particulars will soon be given.  (Signed)

A. H. Foote, Flag Officer.


Over 2000 Prisoners Taken !

Fortress Monroe, Feb. 13.

The gunboat “Stars and Stripes” arrived at noon, from Burnside, with the bearer of dispatches for the government. He reports the rout of the rebels as complete. Three thousand prisoners were captured. All their gunboats were burnt or captured, except two, which escaped to the canal. The federal loss was, killed, 42 ; wounded, about 140 ; the rebels lost, killed about 30, and their wounded less than 100.

The advance from Hatteras took place Wednesday morning, the expedition consisting of about 60 vessels. The fleet anchored off Stumpy Point that night. Next day it proceeded to the entrance of Croaton Sound. After a reconnoissance the attack commenced on Friday, the “Underwriter” leading the column. The rebel fleet was attacked and dispersed in half an hour by a portion of our navy, while the remainder attacked the land batteries.

The fight continued until dark. During the night ten thousand men were landed.

Saturday morning seven thousand were advanced. A masked battery of three guns was soon discovered by skirmishers in front and on both flanks. The 21st, 25th, 27th, Mass., 9th and 51st New York, and 10th Conn., were particularly engaged. The 25th Mass. and 10th Conn. suffered most severely.

The fight lasted only two or three hours, when the battery was abandoned, and our troops pursued and surrounded the rebel camp, and took nearly the whole command prisoners. O. Jennings Wise was wounded and was shot twice while endeavoring to escape in a boat.

Col. Russell of the Tenth Connecticut was killed at the head of his regiment. Lieut. Col. Vizier De Monteil of D’Epeneuil Zouaves, who volunteered, was also killed. No other officers killed above the rank of lieutenant. Our total loss killed and wounded is less than two hundred. The killed are less than fifty.

We took between 2,000 and 3,000 prisoners. They were about being sent to New York by the “S. R. Spaulding” and other steamers. Among them are about 12 or 15 Colonels, Lieut. Colonels and Majors.

On Sunday afternoon a fleet of 15 gunboats started for Elizabeth city, which was shelled, and having been evacuated and partially burnt by the rebels, was occupied. All the rebel fleet was sunk or burnt except two, the “Roanoke” and “Beaufort,” which escaped by the canal. The “Seabird,” which was the flag ship of Commodore Lynch, was run down and boarded, and the gallant Commodore escaped to the shore by swimming.

News from Elizabeth City was received at Roanoke Island on Monday evening, and the “Stars and Stripes” left on Tuesday morning. She struck on the bar at Hatteras on Tuesday night, but started again Wednesday morning, and arrived here about noon to-day.

She brings a bearer of dispatches from Gen. Burnside and Com. Goldsborough. She will take a cargo of ammunition and return immediately.

Gen. Wise was at Nag’s Head, and succeeded in escaping to Norfolk.

The rebels would not fight after being driven from their intrenchments, which was done by Hawkin’s Zouaves and the 21st Massachusetts. Young Wise resisted the storming parties until he was wounded, when he was carried off, and his command retired with others to the upper end of the Island, where they laid down their arms.

Elizabeth Ciry was about half burned by the rebel soldiers. The people sent off a deputation to Com. Goldsborough, asking him to send a force to assist in extinguishing the flames.

Edenton was taken possession of on Wednesday, by Com. Goldsborough, without opposition.

Norfolk and Richmond papers attribute the loss of Roanoke Island to the blundering inefficiency of their navy. They persist in asserting nearly a thousand federals were killed. They charge a Roanoke Island farmer with deserting and piloting the Yankees to the only point where they could effect a landing, the Island being flanked on all sides by an extensive marsh.

Release of Prisoners

Hamilton Fish and Bishop Ames returned to Washington on Friday. Although not permitted to pass the confederate lines, their mission was completely successful. An equal exchange of prisoners was agreed upon. As the confederates had three hundred more than we, (before the battle of Roanoke,) a general jail delivery was agreed upon, and these three hundred were to go on parole. So that all our brave fellows in southern prisons will be liberated.

Col. Charles L. Russell

Of the Tenth Connecticut, was killed at the head of his regiment while gallantly leading on the assault upon the rebel works at Roanoke Island. Col. Russell was Adjutant in the Second regiment, and was of course well known to many in this neighborhood, by whom he was regarded as a brave and gallant soldier. Gen. Burnside has made honorable mention of him in his official report. He was born in Northfield, and was but 33 years of age. His home was in Derby.


Among the deaths reported in the Sixth and Seventh regiments, is that of Corporal Wm. H. Barrow, of this city, who belonged to company I, of the Seventh. He died of fever, on the 18th ult.


22d of February !!

Celebration in Middletown

It is proposed to celebrate the 22d of February, Washington’s Birthday, which occurs on Saturday next. The grand success of the national arms within the last two weeks will make the day memorable in the country. Let there be a fitting celebration in Middletown. At a meeting of the City Government this morning, the subjoined votes were passed.

Whereas, The recent brilliant successes of our Army and Navy in North Carolina and Tennessee, deserve the hearty recognition of every true Union man,

Voted, That His Honor the Mayor, be and is hereby requested to issue his proclamation, asking all loyal citizens of the city to join in celebration of the 22d February, as a fitting time for acknowledgment and congratulation to the noble spirits who have upheld our flag and whose successes are a sure indication of the speedy triumph of the cause of the Union and the Constitution.

Voted, That His Honor the Mayor, Aldermen Hubbard, Hall and Griffin, and Councilmen Bent, Camp and Russell, be a committee to aid in carrying out the spirit and intent of these resolutions.

Washington’s Birthday

In accordance with the usual custom, the Sophomore Class of the Wesleyan University will celebrate the Birthday of Washington. There will be a National salute at sunrise, a Federal salute at noon, and a Class salute at sunset.

In the evening there will be an Oration, reading of Washington’s Farewell Address, Music, &c., in the University Chapel. It is said by those who know, that an unusually fine entertainment is promised. Let all who can, be present.


For several evenings past the boys have made the most of the fine sliding and the bright moonlight. College street hill seemed to be the favorite spot. The sliding was splendid there, and no mistake.


At the ball at the McDonough Hall last Friday night, a Hartford gentleman was present with a couple of “fashionable” women, who were enjoying the occasion mightily when it happened that the Chief of Police of Hartford dropped in, and identified the gentleman as one of the supernumeraries of the Hartford police force, and his companions as two noted women of that place. Information was given to the managers of the ball, and the “supernumeraries” were all three turned out. The man’s name is Estes.