From The Constitution, Wednesday, August 26, 1863 (volume 26, number 1339)
The Richmond Whig contains the following from Charleston : The enemy’s operations during the last 24 hours have been mostly confined to a steady and continuous bombardment of Fort Sumter from their Parrott guns on Morris Island. Their fire begins to tell on Fort Sumter, which replies only at long intervals. The defense of the harbor does not depend mainly upon Sumter. Even if that fortress should be battered down, the harbor may still be held. Gov. Bonham has issued a proclamation urging the removal of all non-combatants from Charleston as soon as possible. The 200 pound Parrott guns of the enemy are too much for the walls of Sumter. It has been determined to defend the city street by street and house by house, as long as a foot of earth is left.
Advices from Arkansas say that all the rebel forces in that state are concentrated at Allmeda, five miles below Little Rock. Kirby Smith had arrived and taken command. The troops were erecting fortifications. The people in the White river country are in almost a starving condition, and there is a stronger position throughout the state to accept [peace] on any terms.
W. H. Lee, a friend and classmate of the editor of the Memphis Bulletin, who has just arrived from Georgia, says that nothing can equal the abject and starving condition of the people of the southern states, and the unmitigated despotism practiced upon them. The people are ripe for a movement to overthrow their rulers, and such action cannot be much longer delayed.
The Richmond Whig has a dispatch from Jackson, Miss., Aug. 18, saying that the federal cavalry from Yazoo City have reached Durant station on the Mississippi railroad, where they captured a train and cut the telegraph wires. Serious destruction on the railroad northward is apprehended. The Yankees are carrying two engines and trains northward from Vaiden, and a heavy raid is coming southward from the Charleston railroad.
Two refugees arrived in Norfolk, Va., Thursday, from Richmond, who were born in Canada. They report that the rebel government is terribly frightened about Charleston, and say that if it is taken all is lost. A guard is kept about the residence of Jeff. Davis night and day to prevent him from running away from Richmond. There were very few troops in or about Richmond, and only one brigade between there and Petersburg.
Letters from the Potomac army speak of extensive movements of troops on the line of the Rappahannock, with what object does not appear. The pontoon bridge at Kelly’s Ford has been taken up and sent to Alexandria, and one letter says many troops have gone in the same direction, some of which have been sent to North Carolina. A deserter says Lee’s army is in Richmond. There are many contradictory reports and little is really known of the position or intentions of either army.
A strong body of cavalry has just returned to Portsmouth, Va., from a long and successful raid in North Carolina.
From the Army of the Potomac the news is that Gen. Lee is receiving large reinforcements, and is supposed to be preparing for another raid into Maryland similar to the movement of last August, preceded the battle of Antietam.
Gen. Hurlbut has made a most successful raid into Central Mississippi, to seize upon some valuable railroad material which the rebels were running into Granada.
Gen. Rosecrans appeared in front of Chattanooga on the 21st inst., and opened fire on the city. The enemy replied from nineteen guns which did little damage. Our fire was very destructive, and every battery which opened on us was disabled.
The steamer Maple Loaf arrived from off Charleston, and reports that she left Stone Inlet last Thursday, at which time the guns of Sumter were silenced, and several breaches made in its walls. Our monitors were close under the guns of Wagner, and by the aid of sharpshooters had nearly silenced the enemy.
It is stated that Gen. Hooker, with patriotic concession of his pride to a sense of duty as a soldier, has asked for any respectable command. He will probably resume active service about the 1st of September.
Accounts from California state that a new and extensive mining region has been discovered in the San Francisco mountains. Mining companies on the Colorado are leaving for the mines.
Celebrities.—Hon. Benjamin F. Wade of Ohio, is spending the summer at Watch Hill, a favorite resort in this state.
A monument is to be erected to the memory of the late Samuel Colt of Hartford, at an expense of $25,000.
Daniel Webster’s widow visited his tomb one day last week. It was her first visit to Marshfield since the death of her illustrious husband.
Gen. Fremont and family have taken a cottage at Nahant for the season.
Gen. Tom Thumb and suite, closed their levees in Hartford on Thursday evening. They made their next appearance in New Haven. While in Hartford, Com. Nutt had a pair of boots made, which were just six inches long, and 1 3/4 inches across the toes.
Gen. McClellan and family arrived at the Pequot House, New London, on Friday last.
Reception of the 24th.—We understand our city fathers are making preparations for the reception of this gallant regiment whose arrival is daily expected. The military and firemen are getting in readiness to do escort duty. The line of march will probably be up Washington to Broad street, down to and around the park, and then up Main street to McDonough Hall, where a collation will be prepared for the regiment. The time for preparation will necessarily be short, as we do not expect to hear from them on their way home till they arrive in New York. We trust however the ladies of the city, and round about will hold themselves in readiness to respond at a moment’s call that there may be no lack in this department.
“That’s the Question.”
Messrs. Editors : In your issue of last week, “Seventy-Six” wants to know if the gallant 24th shall be received by a military or civic escort, or both. There certainly is but one opinion as to what it should be, that is strictly Military.
“Seventy-Six” don’t allow the Fire Department to come in at all, but is considerably worried, (and not without cause), for fear that there will be no greater Military display than has been exhibited on the departure of the several volunteer companies which have left this place.
I may be mistaken when I say all, but with not more than one exception, the companies of volunteers which have been formed in this city and who should have had a Military escort, have been obliged to depend solely on the Fire Department on taking their departure. On all these occasions not a Military man showed his face ; but the Firemen turned out full ranks and saved the credit of the place.
And I suppose, Messrs. Editors, it will be the case now, after all the sleepless nights which “Seventy-Six” has passed for the last fortnight, the Fire Department, as usual, will have to do the Military honors to the 24th regiment.
However, if the Military will behave with proper decorum, we will this once allow them to “mingle” and “lead off,” but unless they show a better front than heretofore, we cannot allow them to “take precedence” or comprise the main feature,” for having always done that thing, we don’t like to give it up.
But come on “Seventy-Six,” and although we may occupy a position in the centre of the line, we will protect the right and left wing.
Various Matters.—The draft for Middletown will, without doubt, take place next Saturday, Aug. 29th, at the State House in New Haven. Persons wishing information can apply to Deputy Provost Marshal Putnam, of this city, who has an office in the Post Office building.
Watermelons are now offered for sale in this city.
There was a prize fight on Wednesday last at the foot of William street, between two Irishmen belonging in Portland. The fight lasted half an hour and was declared drawn, when they were drawn by officers Hyde and Treadway before Justice Putnam, and fined $1 and costs each, amounting to $10 ; one not having funds, was sent to Haddam.
There will be a trot at Douglas Park on Wednesday, for a purse of $50.
The fall term of Wesleyan University commences on Thursday of this week. The prospect is good for a large class. …
The Weather the past week has been quite warm and sultry. There have been several showers but they have had no cooling effect.
Rev. John Hall Newton expired at the residence of his father, editor of this paper, Tuesday morning, 18th inst. The funeral was attended at the North Church on Thursday afternoon. Rev. Dr. Taylor preached from John 11:11—“Our friend Lazarus sleepeth.” Other exercises by Rev. Mr. Dudley of this city, and Rev. Mr. Robbins of East Haddam. Appropriate music was sung by the choir. A large circle of connexions and friends were present. A representation from the 2d Cong. Church in Middle Haddam, of which the deceased was recently pastor, were in attendance.
Death of Mr. Newton.
It is with unfeigned sorrow that we record the demise of this excellent man. For years it has been observed of all that the hour was coming, but by none were the stealthy, but sure footsteps of the destroyer marked by a more intelligent discernment, than by himself. When the summons came, it broke no unfamiliar sound : There was light in the chamber, and the passing away was great peace.
The rarest lives are not the most conspicuous. There was a charm about this man’s life that always comes from a fine temper toning a pure mind, whose habits and satisfaction are in the contemplation of high, ennobling themes. No one could come within the atmosphere of a personal acquaintance with him, without feeling that he was genuine at heart. You could trust him. He was not capricious. The grace of constancy was largely vouchsafed him. No one sharing his confidence or friendship, possessed it simply to fear that the next hour he might lose it. Clear in discernment, accurate in judgment, he always knew the ground he stood upon. His judgment of men was rare. The great questions of life, the practical realities that gird the world about in its every day responsibilities, he directly, and firmly grasped. This gave him singular executive ability, which, combined with great industry, made him, though one of the mildest and gentlest, yet most efficient of men. In the great life-work which he had chosen, the preaching of the gospel, though under the disadvantages of failing health, he accomplished much. He loved the great themes of God’s word, Providence, and Government. He took a strong hold of their life-giving power. He honored them while living, and they sustained him down the dark valley. No stronger testimony can be borne to the life of a faithful minister, than the record he makes in the hearts of a confiding people. A church and parish are mourners to-day, to whom he ministered for the six or eight years of his pastoral service.
It is by no obligations of usage that we write these things of a departed friend. The home circle knew him best, but he was valued beyond the home. The path is not populous he trod. The character he attained, the qualities he illustrated, the memory in which he now only lives, make his good name as worthy of eulogy, as his life is of emulation. To the goadings of ambition he was a stranger. From worldly aspirations, the restless and corroding passions for pre-eminence and place, he was free above most men. Should we put the memory of him into one word, it would be guilelessness. He was genuine as light. This was the charm of John H. Newton. From all semblance and design, artifice, obliquity, disguise, and self-seeking—the things which mar and vitiate all beauty of character, he was singularly exempt. There was no envy in him, or jealousy. He was catholic in spirit, generous, a lover of right, and all true things that make for the ennobling of man and the honor of God.
Standing by his green grave, we fling upon it this tribute, and rejoice in that light, upon which death flings no shade.