From The Constitution, Wednesday, June 29, 1864 (volume 27, number 1383)
A dispatch from headquarters, army of the Potomac, dated June 18th, 8 p. m., says:
The fighting yesterday was severe along the greater part of the line, most determined efforts being made to break the enemy’s line at several points, but little ground, however, was gained except on the left, where the rebels were forced to fall back to the inner line on account of advance position gained by Ledlie’s division of Burnside’s corps, Friday afternoon. The rebel lines are nearly in the form of a semi-circle, the ends resting on the Appomattox river, Petersburg being about the centre. At some points of the line our guns are within a mile and a half of the city, which can be easily destroyed at any moment. The heaviest fighting occurred in the right centre where each division of the second corps at different hours, charged on the rebel works in front, but without success. These works are of the strongest character, and the rebel troops are massed behind them. Our men had to cross open fields of from two to eight hundred yards in extent, to get at them exposed to a cross-fire from batteries, so as to sweep the entire space. The last attack was made at 5 in the afternoon by the 3d division, under Gen. Mott, and the loss is probably heavier than in any of the other attacks. Gen. Paine was wounded while gallantly leading his brigade to the charge. Gen. Martindale, on the right, attacked the enemy, and succeeded in advancing his line and taking a few prisoners. His loss is reported to be about 500. The 5th corps did not lose heavily in their advance in the morning, but their loss was considerable in the afternoon in the attack on our left. Our losses during the past two days will reach 8,000 killed and wounded. The loss of the enemy at some points was greater than ours, but being generally behind their entrenchments, they were not so much exposed and of course suffered less on the whole. All prisoners taken so far, reach 1,200, of whom about 200 came in yesterday.
They report themselves as being in Beauregard’s army.
There was artillery firing on the right and picket skirmishing at various points along the line on the 22d, resulting in the wounding of a few men, but causing no change in position. A battery stationed on an elevated piece of ground in front of Petersburg, kept annoying one of our batteries on the left for some time, when it opened in return. One of the shells exploded in the midst of the men at the rebel guns, and caused a cessation of firing on their part. Gen. Hancock is recovering from his indisposition and expects to resume command of his corps in a few days. The President paid a visit to Gen. Grant on the 22d. Col. Baker, 3d N. C., and a dozen men, were captured and brought in by the 2d corps pickets, last evening. All prisoners captured since the army arrived in this neighborhood, have been sent to City Point for transfer eastward.
The Baltimore Nomination—Speeches by the President.
The committee appointed by the Baltimore Convention to notify Mr. Lincoln of his nomination, visited him at the White House on Thursday. Gov. Dennison of Ohio, president of the convention, in a brief speech, made known the business of the committee, and handed the President a copy of the resolutions of the convention. The President replied as follows:
“Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the committee: I will neither conceal my gratification, nor restrain the expression of my gratitude that the Union people, through their convention, in their continued effort to save and advance the nation, have declared me not unworthy to remain in my present position. I know no reason to doubt why I should accept the nomination tendered, and yet perhaps I should not declare definitely before reading and considering what is called the platform. I will say now, however, that I approve the declaration in favor of so amending the constitution as to prohibit slavery throughout the nation. When the people in revolt with the one hundred days’ notice that they could within those days resume their allegiance without the overthrow of their institutions and that they could not do so afterwards, elected to stand out, such an amendment of the constitution as is now proposed became a fitting and necessary conclusion to the final success of the Union cause.—Such alone can meet and cover all cavils. I now perceive its importance, and embrace it in the joint names of liberty and Union, and let us labor to give it legal form and practical effect.”
The members of the National Union League adjourned on Wednesday from Baltimore to Washington. They called upon Mr. Lincoln and congratulated him upon his re-nomination, and pledged the league to give him “the support his services deserved.” Mr. Lincoln spoke as follows, in reply:
“Gentlemen: I cannot but say in response to the remarks of your chairman, I suppose, that I am very grateful for the renewed confidence which has been accorded to me both by the national Union convention and by the national Union league. I am not insensible at all to the personal compliment there is in this, and yet I do not allow myself to believe that any but a small portion of it is to be appropriated as a personal compliment. The convention and the nation, I am assured, are alike animated by a higher view of the interests of the country for the present and the future, and the part that I am entitled to appropriate as a compliment to myself is only that part which I may lay hold of as being the opinion of the convention and of the league that I am not unworthy to be entrusted with the place I have occupied for the last three years. I have not permitted myself, gentlemen, to conclude that I am the best man in the country, but I am reminded, in this connection, of a story of an old Dutch farmer, who remarked to a companion that “It was not best to swap horses when crossing streams.”
In the U. S. Senate on Thursday, the act repealing the Fugitive Slave laws of 1793 and 1850 passed, by a vote of 27 yeas to 12 nays. Senator Dixon of this state voted in the affirmative. As the bill has been passed by the House, it now only needs the signature of the President to become a law.
The attention of Europe is now being called to the deplorable condition of the Circassians, who, having been conquered by Russia, are being deported from their homes and seeking refuge in Turkey, a society has been formed in England to obtain funds for their relief. Circassia freed itself from Tartar supremacy in the sixteenth century. During subsequent reigns in Russia it was the imperial policy to gain control of the Caucasus. In 1829 Turkey ceded Circassia to Russia. This cession the Circassians resisted, and the war then begun has continued until the present time, until the resources of their country having become exhausted, and the energies of its population worn out by the protracted struggle, they have at last submitted to an overwhelming necessity, and are now undergoing the painful process of expulsion from their native country. The Circassians are a pastoral race, but very independent and warlike. Although not numbering over 500,000 souls, they have, until now in their mountain fastnesses, been able to resist the power of Russia for more than a generation. In 1856 a deputation of Circassians visited Constantinople and presented addresses to the Sultan, protesting against the invasion of the “accursed Muscovite,” and asking to be placed forever under the “majestic shadow of the imperial throne of the Sultan.” Circassia has been the country which has supplied the Turkish market with beautiful slaves, about one thousand girls being annually exported, and in 1856 they were sold in Constantinople for five pounds sterling.
The exiles arrive in Turkey in deplorable condition, great numbers being carried off during the voyage from Trebizond to the ports of Asia Minor. The Sultan has given a large sum for their relief, and the Turkish government has taken steps to relieve their misery. In aid of this measure the English people are called upon, in order to help a race who have been reduced to their present condition in consequence of their patriotism and love for liberty. Cannot America lend a helping hand to this suffering people? Engaged in a fearful war in which the principles of truth, liberty and free institutions are at stake, she can well appreciate the sufferings of the conquered Circassians, and with true liberality give such aid as will be worthy the cause.
About one hundred and twenty-five men are now employed in building fortifications in New Haven harbor. When completed the works on the site of Fort Hale will mount eighteen guns. It is contemplated to build a work mounting five guns at Oyster Point, and another of seven guns at the Light House, which is to be protected from land assault by a work on the hills in rear of it. The works are under charge of Lieut. Samuel F. Mansfield, of this city, attached to the U. S. Engineer corps.
Improving.—The sufferers in this vicinity, from the late railroad accident are, we are glad to learn, improving. The most severely injured, are Mrs. Alfred Cornwell, Mrs. M. Butler and Geo. H. Bishop. Mrs. Butler had three ribs broken, and still remains at Hartford, being unable to be brought home. Geo. H. Bishop had his collar bone broken. Supt. Reed was in town on Wednesday, and left instructions that the best of medical aid should be given to those who were injured.
Fatal Accident.—A sad and fatal accident occurred at Westfield on Tuesday last. Wm. Footit, employed as driver for James O. Smith & Sons, when starting his team passed so near the fence that his little boy, who was standing by the wagon unperceived, was crushed between the wheel and post. He lived but a couple of hours after.
Police.—A case of assault and battery was brought by Mr. Myers against Chas. G. Arnold on Saturday last. Justice Putnam after a hearing, decided that there was no cause of complaint and dismissed the case. A warrant was then issued on Mr. Myers for the same offence, when he was found guilty, fined and imprisoned in the watch house. Myers managed to break the lock and escape from “durance vile.”
Attention Boys.—The attention of the boys and all others who are in the habit of bathing in the river within city limits, is called to a notice issued by the mayor, prohibiting such practice. If persisted in, prosecution will be resorted to.
Preventative From Sunstroke.—We have been requested by a worthy citizen, to state for the benefit of all concerned, that a sure preventative for sunstroke can be found by placing plantain leaves on the head. A simple remedy for a dreaded affliction.
Vaccination.—Some fatal cases, resulting from vaccination, have occurred in this vicinity. Some two weeks since, two children of Mr. Kelley, residing in Cromwell, were vaccinated, and in a short time mortification set in and death ensued in a few hours. Mr. Wolfe of this city, lost a little son during the past week, in a similar manner. We learn that there is another case in the Farms district which will probably prove fatal.
It is stated that Tom Florence, the democratic editor at Washington, lately started the story that Andrew Johnson had abandoned his aged mother, and that she is now wandering about the streets of Philadelphia, basket in hand, selling tripe for a living. The story has been widely copied by the copperhead papers. Florence must be pained to learn that Mrs. Johnson’s mother died seventeen years ago, and was decently buried at Greenville, Tenn.
The idea of having some article in our Sanitary Fairs to be given to the General who receives the highest number of votes, having been found to be very popular, the ladies connected with the fair at Philadelphia have put up a “love of a bonnet,” valued at $175, to be given to the wide of one of our Generals. On Thursday, Mrs. Meade had 274 votes, Mrs. Grant 154, and Mrs. Burnside 150.