From The Constitution, Wednesday, May 27, 1863 (volume 26, number 1326)
Particulars concerning the triumph of our arms at Vicksburg will be found in another column.
The rebels are busily intrenching themselves opposite the point where Gen. Hooker’s forces made the lowest crossing before the late battles.
From New Orleans we have no further news from Gen. Banks, but there is an account of the bombardment of the Port Hudson batteries, by Admiral Farragut commencing on the 8th and continuing two days. The object was probably to prevent rebel reinforcements from marching to Vicksburg.
CAPTURE OF VICKSBURG.
The Victory Complete !
At eleven o’clock on Sunday morning, the President received a telegraphic announcement that Vicksburg is ours, the dispatch stating that the Stars and Stripes float over Vicksburg, and the victory is complete.
The following official details of the fighting of Gen. Grant’s army have been received :
Rear of Vicksburg, May 20—6 A. M.
Hon. E. M. Stanton, Secretary of War :
Gen. Grant won a great and momentous victory over the rebels under Pemberton, on the Jackson and Vicksburg road, at Baker’s Creek, on the 16th inst. Pemberton had a most formidable position on the crest of a wooded hill, over which the road passes longitudinally. He had about 25,000 men. The battle begun at 11 A. M., and was gained at 4 P. M. Its brunt was borne by Hovey’s division of McClernand’s corps, and by Logan’s and Crocker’s divisions of McPherson’s corps. Hovey attacked the hill, and held the greater part of it till 2 o’clock, when, having lost 1600 men, he was succeeded by Boomer’s and Holmes’ brigades of Crocker’s division, by which the conflict was ended in that part of the field. Boomer lost 500 men. Logan operated on the right and cut off the enemy’s direct retreat, so that he was compelled to escape by his right flank, through the woods. Logan lost 400 killed and wounded. We took about 2000 prisoners. On the 17th, advancing to the Big Black, we fought Pemberton again at the bridge there, and captured 3000 more prisoners. He fought in rifle pits protected by a difficult bayou full of abattis.—Lawler’s brigade of McClernand’s division, charged the rifle pits magnificently, and took more prisoners than their own number. Pemberton burned this bridge and returned to Vicksburg, with only three cannon out of sixty he had taken out. Building four bridges over the Big Black, Gen. Grant arrived before the town on the evening of the 18th, and now holds it closely invested. He had opened a line of supplies on Chickasaw bayou, having cut the town off from Haines’ Bluff, which is abandoned by the enemy, and which Gen. Grant will occupy. There was sharp fighting through the day yesterday. Gen. Steele won and holds the upper bluffs and the enemy’s upper water batteries, and gets water from the Mississippi. Sherman’s corps lost yesterday 500 killed and wounded. McPherson holds the centre, and sustained but little loss, as did also McClernand, who holds the left. The gunboats kept the enemy alert during the night, and probably the town will be carried to-day. There are from fifteen to twenty thousand men in it.
S. A. Hurlbut, Major General.
From the facts already received, no doubt can be entertained of the fall of Vicksburg.
Up to the time of our going to press, Tuesday noon, no official news had been received of the capture of Vicksburg, though it is believed to be in possession of our troops.
A telegram from Gen. Hurlburt, dated Memphis, May 25th, 10:30 A. M., states that at 9 o’clock Friday night the city was not taken. Great advances, however, had been gained. We at that time completely commanded the town. Our colors were planted on the enemy’s works. Our captures were about 6,000 prisoners and 74 pieces of artillery. Our troops were within one mile of the Court House. It is supposed there are 15,000 rebels at Vicksburg, to be made prisoners in case the town is captured.
Public attention is turned towards the draft, which it is said will take place before the first of July next. It is not likely there will be any great draft for troops upon this State, since Connecticut has more than filled her quota on previous calls, and other large States, including New York, are far behind. A call for 200,000 men it is estimated might apportion to Connecticut from four to five thousand, and a considerable portion of these might be supplied by voluntary enlistments.
The statement has been made that Secretary Stanton has declared the Government is not bound to accept $300 in place of a drafted man. We don’t believe he said this. It is in plain contradiction of the law itself, and of the evident intention of Congress. The payment of $300 was considered a fair equivalent for personal service on the part of any drafted man and amply sufficient for procuring a substitute in his place. Many cannot leave and join the ranks, and it was never intended they should, such as Congressmen, Judges, and others in responsible positions. Neither was it intended they should escape their share of the burden. The law, therefore, requires them to pay sufficient to procure a substitute, which is plainly a just requirement, and cannot be ignored by the officers of the Government.
Samuel E. Chapell, of Norwich, on a charge of forgery, has been committed for trial at the August term of the Superior Court.
Dr. Church, of New London, the alledged abortionist, has been bound over for trial before the Superior Court to be holden in that city in August.
Business is very brisk at Plymouth. A number of tenements are being built. Some twenty carriages per week are shipped from the various manufactories.
An old proverb tells us that “a lie can travel a thousand leagues while truth is putting on its boots.” Since the great invention of lying by lightning has been introduced, truth in despair seems to have abandoned all intention of stirring from its seat.
The Richmond Whig has shut up shop under the pressure of heavy taxes and expenses.
A highly respectable young lady in East Cleveland, Ohio, died on Friday, from the effects of the gross abuse of her cousin.
The Crenshaw woolen Mills, five stories high, and a portion of the Tredegar iron works, at Richmond, were burned on the 19th inst.
Lost.—Doctor Craig, of Colchester, left his house on Monday the 11th, to come to this city, in search of some one he wanted to see. He left his horse in Portland, where it has remained, but nothing has since been heard from its owner.
Brought to Account.—Two of the Hartford rowdies who came down here last week on Sunday and made disturbance were arrested on Sunday in Hartford and brought back to Middletown. Their case was judicially examined, and they were fined each $1 and costs. The costs on each case amounted to $22.14.
Wesleyan University.—We have the pleasure of announcing that a new professorship in Wesleyan University has just been endowed through the liberality of Oliver Cutts, Esq., of New Rochelle, N. Y. Mr. Cutts is a gentleman of wealth, largely engaged in the Haytian trade, and of high standing in the Methodist denomination. The alumni and friends of the college will be glad to learn of this new endowment, as it places the institution in a position of considerable advantage, and gives assurance that it has able and willing supporters in a quarter where such a gift is particularly gratifying at this time. It is hoped that this is the precursor of even better things to come.
At the next Commencement, there will be an election of two Professors—one of Latin in place of Prof. Foss who will then resign, and the other of Rhetoric and English Literature.
Various Matters.—The lecture which was to have been given on Sunday evening to Young Ladies by Rev. Mr. Hubbell was postponed one week on account of the weather. It is expected that the young gentleman will be especially anxious to hear this lecture.
The valuable real estate on the corner of Main and Church streets is to be sold. It belongs to the estate of the late William Plumber and has never before been in market.
The Selectmen will receive proposals for building the side walls and railing to Pameacha bridge until the 30th.
The water-cart commenced operations on Main street last week.
Flags were hoisted on most of the flagstaffs in the city on Monday, on account of the good news from Vicksburg.
The College Boys give a concert in Berlin on Wednesday evening this week.
Indian Hill Cemetery Association holds its annual meeting next Thursday at the Common Council room.
At the school meeting held on Wednesday evening, a vote of confidence in the Board of Education was passed and the meeting adjourned.
Numbering the Streets.—We mentioned last week that the dwellings and stores on Main street were to be numbered, by order of the Common Council. This has been done under the direction of Mr. George H. Bishop, and will be found a great convenience. Most of the other streets will also be numbered. In College street numbers have been affixed to the dwellings.
The Weather.—During the week there have been three extremely hot days. The warmest was Friday, when the mercury at 6 o’clock stood at 62 and at 2 o’clock at 90 degrees. On Saturday evening the weather changed. Sunday was cold enough for fires and overcoats. It rained a little on Monday morning. This has been a fine growing week, and vegetation has come forward well. Average temperature for the week at 6 o’clock A. M. has been 54 degrees.
“The Constitution says ‘Middletown is getting to be a city of size.’ Glad if it is growing ; but keep at it. Make it not only a good place to be born in, but an enterprising place to live in. Drown your old fogies, and hold out inducements to young men to stay with you and give life, by their energy and business talents, to the resources nature has so plenteously endowed your city with.”
We don’t wish to drown anybody, certainly not the old fogies. A city without old fogies in it can’t be much of a city. Hartford was always proud of its old fogies. It has got an old fogy military company, one or two old fogy societies, and the Courant is a good deal of an old fogy paper, and none the worse for it either. Old fogies should be respected and encouraged. Middletown has a good many of them, but not one too many. Instead of having them drowned, according to the barbarous advice of our cotemporary, we hope they will increase and multiply. There is room enough for them and all the young men of energy and business talents who will come.