Following the American Civil War Sesquicentennial with day by day writings of the time, currently 1863.

by John Beauchamp Jones

            OCTOBER 16TH.—No battle had occurred in Northern Virginia up to 10 o’clock yesterday morning, although there is a constant stream of prisoners being sent to this city daily, taken by our cavalry. At last accounts Meade’s army was retreating toward WashingtonCity, hotly pursued by Lee. They were near Manassas, the first battle-field of the war.

            There is nothing new from the West, except some skirmishing of cavalry in Central and Western Tennessee, wherein our men have had the advantage, though sometimes falling back before superior numbers.

            At Charleston a brisk cannonading is kept up between the batteries; and it is said more hostile transports are arriving, which may indicate active operations on land. Our 700-pounder Blakely No. 2 is there.

            Judge Campbell is giving passports rapidly, sometimes binding the Jews not to engage in private operations, but to confine themselves, while in the United States, to the purchase of supplies for the Confederate States service! Some, however, are willing to go on these terms to avoid conscription, but will realize profit by selling information to the enemy.

            Judge Hastings, of California, proposes to return thither and publish a pamphlet describing newly discovered gold mines, and organizing companies to work them, which shall be secessionists; and when organized, he will fall upon and destroy the United States troops, march into Arizona, and from thence pour reinforcements into Texas. The Secretary, in the absence of the President, sends a copy of this scheme to Lieut.-Gen. E. K. Smith, trans-Mississippi Department, and gives some encouragement to the judge; abstaining, however, for the present, from devoting any money to the project.

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