From The Constitution, Wednesday, July 1, 1863 (volume 26, number 1331)
Public interest during the week has centered in the movements, or the reported movements, of the rebels invading Pennsylvania. It has been a fortnight since the first intelligence of an invasion startled the north, and the excitement has been gradually growing less ever since. Those who have hitherto invaded Pennsylvania have been found to be rather insignificant in numbers and anxious only to get plunder. Accounts keep coming in, some of them rather startling, of the rebel advance, but they are not of the most reliable kind. So long a time has now been given for preparation to meet the enemy that little fear is entertained for the safety of Baltimore or the principal cities of Pennsylvania. They are strongly fortified and well defended. The rebels are reported advancing towards Harrisburg in considerable force. Ten regiments of the enemy are said to have occupied Gettysburg on Friday. This was the division of Gen. Early, belonging to Longstreet’s corps.
Gov. Curtin issued a proclamation on Friday, calling for 60,000 volunteers. These troops are to be mustered into the state service for sixty days for the defence of the border. On Friday night the rebels appeared to be concentrating in Blue Ridge passes. It was reported that Hooker’s right wing was in the vicinity of Hagerstown. The Washington Star says the trains of Lee’s army crossed the Potomac on Thursday night, and thinks he intends operating with almost the whole of his army north of the Potomac.
The pirate Tacony, after committing many ravages on our northern coast, particularly among the fishing vessels, has come to a timely end. Those on board discovered that it would be impossible to elude the numerous vessels sent out after the Tacony. They, therefore, abandoned their vessel and went aboard a schooner they had captured. They formed the bold design of entering Portland harbor, which they accomplished under a disguise, and on Friday night succeeded in getting possession of the U. S. revenue cutter Caleb Cushing, which they stole and put to sea. On Saturday two steamers pursued the cutter, came up with her about twelve miles down the bay, and attacked her. The pirates set fire to the magazine, and left in small boats. The cutter was blown up. The pirates were captured, and are now lodged in Fort Preble.
On Saturday night Gen. Hooker was relieved from the command of the Army of the Potomac at his own request, and Gen. Meade was appointed his successor.
The rebels were reported on Sunday within three miles of Harrisburgh. Gen. Couch and the Governor were busy night and day perfecting arrangements for defense. An attack was momentarily expected.
The entire army of the Potomac is now on the north side of the Potomac. The whole army is in motion, and is probably in front and north of Baltimore.
The rebels appear to be concentrating near Sharpsburgh. Longstreet’s army corps has passed through Hagerstown, going towards Pennsylvania. It was preceded by A. P. Hill’s corps. Gen. Lee is said to have passed through Hagerstown on Friday.
Gen. Rosecrans’ army is once more in motion. The troops were advancing in three columns towards the enemy’s position along the Duck river.
Gen. Dix telegraphs on Sunday that an expedition sent out by him had been successful, had destroyed the bridge over the South Anna and made important captures.
PORT HUDSON – THE 24TH REG’T.
We have received a letter from G. N. Moses of this city, dated in camp before Port Hudson, June 8. He furnishes a list of the killed and wounded of the 24th regiment, which we have already published. He then writes:
The general health of the regiment is good. It numbers some 315 men for duty, which is as well as any other here. Col. Mansfield, Lt. Col. Allison, and all the officers from Middletown are well I believe, except Lt. Gibbs, who has not been with his company in this campaign, having been left sick at Baton Rouge. How he is now, I can’t say. Capt. Parker and Lt. Savage of Co. D. are looking well, and the same can be said of all the others—Gleason, Balcam, Addis, Camp, Crosby, and our out of town friends. The regiment has been seriously engaged with the enemy but once, at which time this loss occurred, and our friends at home will have no cause to blush for their behavior so far. There was no flinching, and every man did his duty.—The great and we hope decisive battle takes place to-morrow, after which I will write again.
The following was received yesterday (Monday) and gives full particulars of the condition of the 24th after the fight of the 17th ult. Amos Miller, of Co. A. killed, belonged in this city.
In camp before Port Hudson,
June 18th, 1863.
A short time ago I sent you a list of the killed, wounded, &c., in the 24th regiment, in the fight of the 27th ultimo. I now enclose to you another list of killed and wounded in the fight of the 14th inst. In the attack of this day, the 24th were detailed to carry bags of cotton, with which to fill up the ditch in front of the breastworks of the enemy, and to those same bags of cotton can be attributed the comparatively small number killed.
Killed—Amos Miller, Co. A ; Charles Rigby, Co. D ; Merriman, Co. I ; John McCarty, Co. H ; Edwin Eaton, Co. H ; John Barry, Co. F ; Robert Smith, Co. I ; Ives, Co. I ; Charles Carroll, Co. H. Total 9.
Wounded—Osborn S. Dickerson, Co. A, face, severely ; Fletcher Clark, Co. A, breast, slight ; George Whitmore, Co. A, hand, slight ; Joseph Flinn, Co. A, face, slight ; James Duffy, Co. A, arm, slight ; Henry Butler, Co. D, chin, slight ; Leonard Tryon, Co. D, finger, slight ; Thomas Riley, Co. I, shoulder, slight ; Philip Ryan, Co. H, hand, slight ; Samuel Platts, Co. B, arm, slight ; Richard Thompson, Co. B, hand, slight ; Charles Nichols, Co. C, head, slight ; Stephen I. Demay, Co. C, wrist, slight ; Warren Wright, Co. C, slight.
Among the officers none were injured but Lieut. F. E. Camp, Co. F, who received a wound in the shoulder from a buck shot, which is nothing serious. One thing is to be remarked, and that with pleasure, most of the wounds are slight, and none of them such as to maim one for life.
This regiment has showed itself to be as brave, and composed of as good fighting material as any in this Department. On the day of the battle they were pushed to the extreme front, and it is the only regiment that holds its advanced position, all others having either retired or never got so far advanced. Their position is now covered with a breastwork that they have thrown up at night, and so near to the enemy’s lines, that Capt. Mabbis, of Co. I, actually threw a musket ball over their parapet from our works. They are obliged to keep a vigilant watch on the enemy, to prevent surprise, as the supporting parties are some ways in the rear, and the whole regiment is divided into three reliefs, who watch eight hours each. This, with digging is pretty hard work, but they bear it like brave men. Col. Kimball, the acting Brigadier in whose brigade the 24th are placed, says he has only one fault to find with them, and that is because there is so few of them, the fighting men numbering about 250 I think. The balance are in Hospitals or Convalescents Camps at Baton Rouge, Bayou Boeuff and Brashear City.
The 24th has showed itself to be as good as the best on the long marches, suffering the privations of campaign life with as little murmuring, and fighting as bravely as veteran troops, although they are classed as nine months men and not soldiers by those who are in for three years. Saw Lt. Col. Allison and he is looking very well indeed. I learn that Col. Mansfield is very well, as is also Quartermaster Dart and the worthy Chaplain, Parson Wightman. All the other officers I presume are as well as usual. I hear nothing to the contrary.
I cannot close without mentioning an instance of courage and humanity evinced by one Wm. Clark, of Co. D, who at night and alone, went up to the enemy’s works, carrying water to a poor wounded soldier who had laid there 48 hours, and then came back, got assistance and carried him off the field. There was something truly courageous in this act as well as humane, and the same soldier is reckoned one of the best in the regiment. The man he saved was from the 90th New York, I think.
But I have said enough, and will close. All honor to the brave 24th Connecticut. Their friends at home have no cause to blush for them unless with pride.
Yours truly, George N. Moses.
Gen. Grant is successfully prosecuting his operations against Vicksburg. His batteries were to open on the night of the 18th with hot shot along part of the line. An attempt was soon to be made to carry the place by storm.
The situation of affairs in Pennsylvania and Maryland must cause much apprehension. Gen. Lee, who is acknowledged to be the ablest General of the rebel Confederacy, is leading a large army of veteran soldiers into Pennsylvania, and his advance columns have already reached Harrisburgh. In his front he has to encounter hastily constructed fortifications, and an army of militia summoned from civil employments within the past fortnight. Our army of the Potomac, at this important moment, suddenly finds itself without a leader of tried ability, Gen. Hooker having resigned his command at the very crisis of fate. No one knows why. Gen. Meade may be an able General, and may be the man for the hour, but no one can tell. Everything looks uncertain, doubtful. We believe the rebels will be whipped out of Pennsylvania, but before that can be done Gen. Lee may have time to inflict incalculable damage. What we need is a leader who can take advantage of this splendid opportunity for annihilating an army which has threatened Washington for two years, and is the only army which has gained the semblance of a victory over our troops. The Army of the Potomac is brave, none braver in the world, and with a Leader will crown their banners with victory.
Wesleyan University.—Commencement Exercises.—The annual examination preceding commencement, begins next week on Tuesday, and will occupy three days.
On Friday evening will be the Prize Declamation, probably at McDonough Hall.
President Cummings will preach the Baccalaureate sermon on Sunday morning, 12th inst. at the Methodist church.
Rev. John P. Durbin, D. D. will deliver an address before the Missionary Lyceum, at the same place on Sunday evening.
Addresses before the Literary Societies, Monday evening. Rev. Andrew P. Peabody, D. D., Orator ; Rev. John Pierpont, Poet.
Tuesday, at 3 o’clock, P. M., the meeting of the Joint Board of Trustees and Visitors will be held, and in the evening George Wm. Curtiss will address the Alpha Delta Phi fraternity.
Wednesday is Alumni day. There will be a business meeting in the morning. In the afternoon Rev. Edward Cook, D. D. will deliver an Oration, and Rev. Nelson Stutson a Poem. Alumni festival in the evening.
Commencement day, Thursday, the 16th. The graduating class numbers twenty-six. The music this year will be furnished by the celebrated Dodsworth’s Band, and a concert will probably be given by the Band on Wednesday evening.
The Middletown Orphan Asylum.—Does it not sometimes happen that while doing much for benevolent objects abroad we neglect those at home? This question has been asked in view of the feeble condition of the Middletown Orphan Asylum. Many years since when first incorporated it numbered nearly one hundred members. By death and removals its numbers have dwindled until there are few to pay the yearly tax of one dollar. An Institution of the kind is needed in this place. The Managers are yearly obligated from the low state of their finances, to refuse to receive children who ought not to be sent either out of town, or to the poor house. At the Asylum the children receive every care. They attend the district school, and are brought up to be useful men and women. Having no fund the society is obliged to depend upon yearly subscriptions which often fall short of the sum required for expenses. There is at present a debt of one hundred and thirteen dollars—it is ardently wished this debt should be removed, and a sum raised sufficient for the present year, and to be the nest-egg for a fund which will place the society on a permanent basis among the needful charities of our place.
A collection will be taken up in the different churches for this object. Will not all give with an open hand and a willing heart. He that gives liberally is twice blessed.
Lighting the Streets.—We hope arrangements will be made for lighting the streets so as to make them at all times safe for passengers. Such a state of things as occurred a week ago Sunday ought never to occur again. There was a faint moon in the first part of the evening, and on that account no lamps were lighted that night, which was cloudy and intensely dark. We have heard of many instances where the greatest inconveniences were experienced, and where limbs and life were endangered. Our citizens desire that there should be a change in the arrangements hitherto existing, so that on every dark night, moon or no moon, the streets will be in a condition to be traveled with safety.
Various Matters.—The business hours of the Central Bank will be changed after the 13th inst., and will be from 9 A. M. till 3 P. M.
Gen. McClellan and his wife left here for Hartford on Friday. They came on Monday and stopped at Mr. Alsop’s. …
The funeral of Sergeant Gaston was attended on Wednesday, Rev. Mr. Bruce officiating, and the remains were interred in Mortimer cemetery. …
Help in this section is very scarce, and two dollars a day is hardly an inducement for some men to do a good day’s work. …
A small boy tumbled off the stone bridge at Pameacha, some twenty feet more or less, and didn’t get hurt. Remarkable boy, that. …
A new corporation has just been formed for the manufacture of machinery. It is called the Middletown Manufacturing Company, and has a capital of $20,000. We publish elsewhere the articles of incorporation and the names of the shareholders.
The Weather.—The average temperature for the week at 6 o’clock A. M. has been 53 degrees. The warmest days were Saturday and Sunday, when the mercury at noon reached 82 degrees. We have had no rain during the week, and the ground is very dry. It has been about three weeks since rain has fallen.
History of a Coin.—A few days ago Mr. William Southmayd found beneath one of the boards in the flooring of the old dwelling lately belonging to the Plumbe estate on Main street a silver coin bearing the stamp of the Bank of England, and dated 1804. It is about the size of a silver dollar. An interesting family history is connected with that coin, which we are permitted to allude to. It has been identified by Mr. Horace Southmayd of New York as one which he received in 1810 from Mr. Daniel Harris, father of Mr. George W. Harris. Mr. Southmayd kept that coin for nine years. Between 1819 and 1821 he was living in the dwelling above mentioned, and within that time gave it to his little daughter, now married and residing in New Haven. She lost it in a crevice in the floor, where it remained until unexpectedly discovered a few days ago. Its discovery, as may be supposed, has brought up many family reminiscences. The coin is at present in the possession of Mr. George W. Harris, whose father parted with it fifty-three years ago.