From The Constitution, Wednesday, April 16, 1862 (volume 25, number 1268)

Latest News

Gen. Banks, in a dispatch to Secretary Stanton, on Sunday, says he has received a report direct from rebel sources that Beauregard is dead. If it is true he must have been killed in the second day’s fight.

An important advantage has been gained in the southwest. Gen. Mitchell has occupied Huntsville, Ala., 10 miles south of the Tennessee, and taken possession of fifteen locomotives and a large amount of the rolling stock of the Memphis and Charleston railroad, a road which the rebels have mainly depended on for the transportation of troops and supplies.

On Saturday afternoon, Gen. Wool telegraphed that the Merrimac had remained stationary near Sewall’s Point all day, in plain sight and was believed to be aground. She has made no further hostile demonstration up to Sunday night.

The latest news from Yorktown indicates no particular change in the relative positions of the two armies. The rebels have been greatly reinforced. On Friday they made a sortie from their works, but were repulsed, leaving behind a number of dead and wounded.

In Gen. Fremont’s department, Gen. Milroy repulsed 1000 of the enemy near Monterey, on Saturday. They suffered considerable loss. On our side the loss was trifling.

Nothing especial from Port Royal. The bombardment of Fort Pulaski had not yet commenced.

Jeff. Davis has announced his intention of taking the field in person.

The President has approved the bill passed by Congress affording aid to such states as may desire the gradual abolition of slavery.

The Victory in the Southwest

Details of the great battle near Pittsburg landing, Tenn., are received slowly. The attack was made about four o’clock on Sunday morning, and the brigades of Prentiss and Sherman, which were in the advance, were driven back to the river. Here the enemy were held in check by the fire from our gunboats. In this assault General Prentiss and two regiments were taken prisoners. General Grant then came up with the troops from Savannah, when the contest waged with vigor all day. General Buell, with General Nelson’s division, arrived about four o’clock and aided the nearly exhausted troops of General Grant to keep the field. Polk and Beauregard, who were in the advance, suspended the attack at six o’clock, and the contestants slept upon their arms.

During the night the remainder of General Buell’s force and General Lew. Wallace’s division of General Grant’s column, reinforced, and the next morning the contest was resumed.

The Union troops fought vigorously, drove the enemy back, and occupied the position held by them on the morning of Sunday. The rebels were routed and followed by a large body of cavalry, who, it is reported, have occupied the rebel position at Corinth. Our loss is severe, and variously estimated at from six hundred to one thousand killed, and from three thousand to four thousand wounded. The rebel loss much greatly exceeds that number.

During the fight of Sunday we lost thirty-six field pieces, but the next morning we retook our camp and lost batteries, together with about forty of the enemy’s guns. Six of our batteries were taken and re-taken six times.

Among the casualties are the following :

Gen. U. S. Grant, wounded in the ankle, slightly.

Gen. C. F. Smith, severely wounded.

Col. Hall, 16th Illinois, killed.

Col. Logan, 32d Illinois, wounded severely.

Col. Davis, 51st Illinois, wounded severely.

Major Hunter, 32d Illinois, killed.

Col. Peabody, 25th Illinois, severely wounded.

Beauregard gave orders not to destroy any of the camp equipage taken on Sunday, as he expected a complete victory the next day.

Cincinnati, Friday, April 11.

The latest and most authentic intelligence received from Pittsburgh Landing estimates our loss at seven thousand, including two thousand men who were taken prisoners by the enemy.

It is still reported that our forces have captured Corinth, Mississippi, and that immense supplies of provisions and munitions of war have been taken ; but this news lacks confirmation.

The tidings direct from Pittsburgh Landing are no later than Monday night. The correspondent of the Gazette, who left at that time, reports that it would be impossible for the rebels to make a stand, their retreat having culminated in a headlong flight.

There is no longer any reason to doubt that the enemy sustained a terrible and disastrous defeat. They staked the fortune of their army upon the issue of the battle, and, after their failure to surprise our forces, fought with desperation, but the sustained bravery of our troops won the day gloriously.

The flying rebels are represented as having been broken and dispirited to the last degree. Their defeat was overwhelming.

There is as yet no contradiction of the reported death of Gen. Sidney Johnston, nor of the wounding of Beauregard.

The loss of the rebels is not known, but must have been heavier than ours, for our troops poured in a close and deadly fire.


Steamer Benton, off Island No. 10,

April 7, 1862.—8:25 A. M.

To the Hon. Gideon Welles :

Two officers of their Navy have this instant boarded us from Island No. 10, stating that, by order of their commanding officers, they were ordered to surrender Island No. 10.

As these officers knew nothing of the batteries on the Tennessee shore, I have sent Capt. Phelps to ascertain something definite on the subject. Gen. Pope is now advancing from New Madrid in strong force to attack the rear. I am with gunboats and mortars ready to attack in front. Buford is ready to co-operate, but it seems as if the place is to be surrendered without further defense.

A. H. Foote, Com. Officer.

Two More Iron-Clad Steamers

The work upon the second iron-plated steamer, at Greenpoint, is pushed with the utmost speed, day and night, and it is hoped that she will be ready for sea during the present month. The vessel will be much larger than the Monitor, will carry eighteen guns of the largest caliber, and will be practically invulnerable. It is confidently believed that she will be the fastest of this slow species of war vessels ever constructed. The third iron-clad steamer provided for in the original appropriation is in process of construction at Philadelphia. The news of what the Confederates are doing in the same line of business will doubtless lead to the hurrying of the work upon this steamer, so as to ensure her completion as soon as possible.—Ib. [Courant]

Abolition of Slavery in the District

The bill abolishing slavery in the District of Columbia has passed both Houses of Congress. It needs only the President’s signature to become a law. Some profess to believe he will veto the bill. But he will not veto it. A Presidential veto to a measure of this kind would not be like Abraham Lincoln.


By His Excellency,

William A. Buckingham,

Governor of the State of Connecticut.

A Proclamation.

Extensive and powerful combinations for the subversion of our government still exist, civil war continues to exhaust and desolate the land, and citizens of our common country rush to meet in deadly conflict.

The struggle to maintain our national union and preserve our free institutions, is taxing our resources, and costing the lives of our purest, most noble, and patriotic sons.

In our anxiety and distress, it becomes us, as a people, to recognize the power and authority of Him, who “taketh up the isles as a very little thing,” and before whom “the nations are counted as the small dust of the balance ;” to acknowledge His righteous judgments, and seek His favorable interposition ; to confess our sins and learn those lessons of humility and reverence, of justice and loyalty, which He would teach us by His Providences.

I do therefore appoint Friday, the 18th day of April next, to be observed throughout this Commonwealth as a day of Humiliation, Fasting and Prayer ; and earnestly recommend our citizens to devote the day to such acts of public religious service and private devotion as will be acceptable to God, and tend to bring their lives into closer conformity with the requirements of the divine law :–

Also ; that they pray God to give His Spirit to this whole people, and lead them to cherish the graces of penitence, faith and charity ; that He will watch with paternal care over those, who at the call of duty have gone to the camp and the battlefield, and give consolation to the friends of those who have already fallen : that in manifesting His just displeasure against our national sins, He will in mercy remember the innocent, and the loyal : that He will not suffer the jealousy or cupidity of Monarchical Governments to interfere with the advancement of civil liberty through republican institutions : that He will lead all who are in authority, to rely upon Him for direction, and especially, that He will give the President of the United States divine wisdom, as well as power, to preserve the unity, and uphold the dignity and authority of the government, so that permanent peace may soon be restored to our troubled country ; “for who knoweth whether he has come to the kingdom for such a time as this ?”

{ L. S.} Given under my hand and the Seal of the State, at the City of Norwich, this the twenty-eighth day of March, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-two, and of the Independence of the United States the eighty-sixth.


By His Excellency’s command,

J. Hammond Trumbull, Secretary of State.



The following is the aggregate of the vote for Governor, as shown by the returns, including every town but Sherman, in the State. The showing must be satisfactory to all hearty supporters of the administration in its prosecution of the war :



Hartford County,



New Haven County,



New London County,



Fairfield County,



Windham County,



Litchfield County,



Tolland County,



Middlesex County,





Buckingham ahead, 9073.

One town (Sherman) to hear from.


Gen. Mansfield

This officer, whenever he has been allowed to act, has always been successful. At Fort Brown, Monterey, Buena Vista, in the Mexican War he stands preeminent. At Washington City he was successful in all he was allowed to manage. He planned and executed the taking of Alexandria and the crowning the Heights of Arlington without the loss of a man except Colonel Ellsworth. At the late fight at Newport News he wrested from the enemy the Congress after she had surrendered. We give below General Wool’s telegram of thanks to him.

Fort Monroe, March 15, 1862.

To Gen. Mansfield : General—The Major General commanding desires me to say that he thanks you for your efficiency, and congratulates you on your success in completing the Ericsson Redoubt so soon.

Very respectfully,  E. B. Carling,

Aid de Camp.

An Interesting Letter

The following intensely interesting letter from one who not only participated, but was severely wounded, in the battle of Fort Donelson gives a graphic view of the brilliant charge which finally carried the Fort. It is from Sergeant H. B. Doolittle, of the 2d Iowa, to his uncle in this town, who has permitted us to give it to the public.

A. Doolittle, Esq., Middletown, Ct.

Dear respected uncle ; Thank God, I am once more able to take my pen and drop you a few lines. I suppose you have heard of the 2d Iowa’s charge at “Fort Donelson,” I received three bullets in that charge. The left wing of our regiment led the charge. The colors advanced with the left wing. When we got within 60 feet of the rebel breast works they opened fire on us ; in the first volley I received a ball square in front two inches below the navel. I felt the ball tearing in and I gave myself up as good as dead ; but I said I would plant the colors on the rebel works if I lived long enough, so I kept on advancing. I got within 20 feet of the works when a ball struck my right leg below the knee and my right shoulder at the same time. I was in the act of stepping and the ball struck the top of the calf of my leg, and went clear down to the bottom where it lodged, and had to be cut out. I felt myself falling so I gave the colors to Corporal Page and told him to take the flag in, I was shot. I heard him say “Sergeant, you ain’t shot are you?” As I was falling I turned to answer, when I thought I saw the colors falling. As I struck the ground I rolled over and there Page lay by my side with a bullet through his right temple. I picked his head up and asked him if he knew me. He was gasping his last. I jumped up, picked up a gun and looked toward the rebel works. Our flag was just going in. I tried to shout but I had lost my voice for the moment. I walked up and over the works. The rebels were flying. I helped them along with the minnie ball in my musket, then I shot again and took dead aim at a chap that had stopped to load his gun. He dropped his gun and threw up his arms and fell stiff. I then felt as though I had done my duty, so the excitement commenced to leave me and I commenced to get weak. I started out the works for our surgeon. With the assistance of one of my Corporals I walked ½ a mile to the field surgeon. The bullet in my bowels did not go through. Lint was put on my wounds and a bandage, then I was put in an ambulance and taken to an old building 4 miles off. O! how I suffered no pen can tell. I laid twenty-four hours expecting every moment to die. I was calm and resigned to my fate. I felt willing to die for my country. The next morning at day break for rebels surrendered. Our surgeon probed my wound about 12 and told me I was safe. But what agony I suffered for ten days! I was taken to the hospital at Mound City, there they gave me the erysipelas in my wounded leg. They thought it would spread up my thigh to the wound in my bowels; then no mortal power could save me. When my friends from Davenport, Iowa, called on me the hospital surgeons told them I only had 12 hours to live. My friend Dr. Maxwell had me moved to the Mound City hotel and three Iowa doctors were with me that evening, and most of the night, they saved me in spite of what the army surgeons said. So I owe my life to the care of my friends blessed by an all seeing One above. My brother, Amos, came down as soon as he heard of it, and I was removed to Cincinnati. The wound on my shoulder is well, the wound in my bowels is healing rapidly, and my limb is in a fair way. I would willingly give my life to win such victories as we won there. I hope to soon be able to go again. I was shot the evening of the 15th of Feb. four weeks and five days ago.

I remain your sorely tried but affectionate nephew.

H. B. Doolittle

Cincinnati, Ohio, March 20th, 1862.


In this town, April 5th, Miss Sophia Smith, Æ 71 and on the 5th, Miss Rhoda Smith, Æ 78 years—sisters, and both of Rocky Hill.

In this city, April 10th, Mrs. Frances Ranney, wife of Mr. Samuel R. Ranney, aged 29 years.

In this city, April 1st, Thomas P., son of Patrick Meegan, aged 14 months.

In this city, April 6th, Miss Mary Ann, daughter of the late George and Rachel Penney, aged 48 years.

In this city, April 14th, Patrick, son of Wm. Ashton, aged 11 days.

In Portland, March 31st, suddenly, Robert, son of John C. and Jesse Murray of this town, South Farms, aged 18 years, 7 months. Interment in the Mortimer Cemetery, April 2d.

In Cromwell, April 1st, Miss Sarah Maria, youngest daughter of Buckley Edwards, Esq., aged 18 years, 5 months.

In Portland, April 4th, Agnes, daughter of Mr. Wm. Lawrence, aged 6 years, 8 months.

In Durham, April 6th, Mr. Thomas W. Lyman, son of the late George Lyman, Esq., aged 52 years.

In Berlin, April 3d, Mr. Joseph North, aged 66 years.

In East Windsor, April 5th, Mr. James Hasnet, aged 42 years. His remains were brought to this city and interred in St. John Cemetery.

In New Haven, April 6th, Carrie A., aged 20 years, wife of Henry E. Nichols ; April 5th, Mrs. Caroline A. Bean, aged 16 years, wide of Geo. W. Bean.

In Hartford, April 8, Mr. John G. Mellein, aged 47.

In Hartford, March 29, Mrs. Lucy Fitch, aged 92.

One Year Ago

Just one year ago to-day April 15, Fort Sumter was evacuated by the U. States troops. Just one year ago, President Lincoln issued his proclamation for 75,000 volunteers.