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all loose, and were compelled to run through the fire of sharpshooters lining the bank for more than a mile.
The day which at one time had been so inauspicious to oni arms, closed upon a signal triumph. In his official report of the battle, Gen. Pillow declared, that no further evidences were needed to assure the fact, that “the small Spartan army’ which withstood the constant fire of three times their number for nearly four hours (a large portion of them being without ammunition), had acted with extraordinary gallantry, than the length and character of the conflict, the great inequality of numbers, and the complete results that crowned the day.
That our loss should be severe in such a conflict might he expected. The list of our killed, wounded, and missing numbered 632. The loss of the enemy was stated in the official reports of our generals to have been more than treble ours. Of this, we had the most abundant evidence in the incidents of the field, in his flight, and his helpless condition, when assailed in his crowded transports with the fire of thousands of deadly rifles.
The victory of Belmont was esteemed as one of the most • brilliant triumphs of the war.* In his congratulatory order, Gen. Albert Sydney Johnston, who had been appointed to
The government at Washington, with a characteristic falsehood, stubborn to every other consideration but that of sustaining the spirits of its people, claimed the affair at Belmont as a victory to Northern arms. It is curious, and to some degree amusing, to notice the manner of this misrepresentation, and the gloze and insinuation by which it was effected in the Northern official reports of the battle. Gen. Grant, in his official report, declared that he had driven the Confederates to the river, burnt their camps, &c. So far, his report was ostentatiously fine, but not untrue. It has been shown, however, thay the scale of battle was completely turned by a flank movement of our forces in heavy numbers, which routed the enemy, and converted his early successes of the morning into an ignominious defeat. In the Northern official reports of the battle, this portion of the day was dismissed with refreshing brevity and nonchalance. After describing in the most glowing terms his victory in pressing the Confederates to the river, Gen. Grant wrote to his friends, who communicated the letter to the newspapers, on our return, stragglers that had been left in our rear fired into us, and more recrossed the river.” In his official report, the flank movement of the Confederates, that was the event of the day and had decided it, was alluded to in a single sentence of casual men tion, “The rebels recrossed the river, and follorced in the rear to our place of debarkation.” Instances of this style and effrontery of falsehood abounded ir all the Northern official reports of the events of the war; the above is fur nished only as a characteristic specimen.
command in the Western Department, and had established his head-quarters at Bowling Green, declared : “This was no ordi hary shock of arms; it was a long and trying contest, in which our troops fought by detachments, and always against superior numbers. The 7th of November will fill a bright page in our military annals, and be remembered with gratitude by the sons and daughters of the South.”
Despite the victory of Belmont, our situation in Kentucky was one of extreme weakness and entirely at the
of the enemy, if he had not been imposed upon by false representations of the number of our forces at Bowling Green. When Gen. Johnston was about to assume command of the Western Department, the government charged him with the duty of deciding the question of occupying Bowling Green, Kentucky, which involved not only military, but political considerations. At the time of his arrival at Nashville, the action of the Legis lature of Kentucky had put an end to the latter consideration by sanctioning the formation of companies menacing Tennessee, by assuming the cause of the government at Washington, and by abandoning the neutrality it professed ; and, in consequence of their action, the occupation of Bowling Green became neces sary as an act of self-defence, at least in the first step.
About the middle of September, ( en. Buckner advanced with a small force of about four thousand men, which was in•reased by the 15th of October to twelve thousand, and though other accessions of force were received, it continued at about Che same strength until the end of November, measles and other diseases keeping down the effective force. The enemy's force then was reported to the War Department at fifty thousand, and an advance was impossible.
Our own people were as much imposed upon as were the enemy, with respect to the real strength of Gen. Johnston's forces, and while they were conjecturing the brilliant results of an advance movement, the fact was that inevitable disasters might have been known by the government to have been in store for the Southern cause in Kentucky and Tennessee, and to be awaiting only the development of a crisis. The utter inadequaey of Gen. Johnston's forces was known to the govern
. ment. The authorities at Richmond appeared to hope for results without the legitimate means for acquiring them: to look
for relief from vague and undefined sources; and to await, with dull expectation, what was next to happen. While the govern ment remained in this blank disposition, events marched on: ward. It is easily seen, as far as our narrative has gone, that our troops had shown a valor that was invincible against largely superior numbers of the enemy; that had given striking illustrations of endurance in circumstances of the greatest adversity and suffering; and that promised with absolute certainty, as far as its agency could go, the achievement of our independence. It is hereafter to be seen that this valor and devotion, great as they were, could yet not withstand an enemy superior in force, when his numbers were multiplied indefinitely against them; that they could not resíst armaments to which, for want of defences, they could only offer up useless sacrifices of life; and that some other agency than the natural spirit and hardihood of men was necessary in the conduct of a war, in the nineteenth century, against a nation which had given such unquestionable proofs, as the North had, of quick and abundant resource, mental activity, and unflagging hope.
It remains but to add here, mention of the political connection which was scarcely more than nominally effected between Kentucky and the Confederate States. On the 18th November, the opponents of the Lincoln rule in Kentucky assembled in Convention, at Russellville, in the southern part of the State, for the purpose of organizing a provisional government for Kentucky, and for taking steps for her admission into the Southern Confederacy. On the 20th November, the Convention unanimously agreed upon a report, presenting in a strong light the falseness of the State and Federal Legislature, and concluded with the declaration that “the people are hereby absolved from all allegiance to said government, and that they have the right to establish any government which to them may zeem best adapted to the preservation of their lives and liberty. George W. Johnson, of Scott county, was chosen governor Commissioners were appointed to negotiate with the Confed crate government for the earliest admission of Kentucky into the government of the Confederate States. The embassy of the commissioners to Richmond was successful, and before the middle of December, Kentucky was duly recognized as one of the States of the Southern Confederacy.
Prospects of European Interference. The selfish Calculations of England.-Effecte of the Blockade on the South.- Arrest by Capt. Wilkes of the Soutbern Commissioner8.- The Indignation of England.-Surrender of the Commissioners by the Lincoln Government.-Nr. Seward's Letter.--REVIEW OF AFFAIRS AT THE CLOSE OF THE YEAR 1861.--Apathy and Improvidence of the Southern Government.-Superiority of the North on the Water.—The Hatteras Expedition.-The Port Royal Expedition. The Southern Privateers. Their Failure.—Errors of Southern Statesmanship.—“King Cotton."'-- Episodes of the War.—The Affair of Santa Rosa Island.—The Affair of Dranesville.--Political Measures of the South.-A weak and halting Policy. The Spirit of the War in the North.-Administration of the Civil Polity of the Southern Army.--The Quarter-master's Department.-- The Hygiene of the Camps.--Ravages of the Southern Army by Disease.—The Devotion of the Women of the South.
SINCE the commencement of the war, the South had enter tained prospects of foreign interference, at least so far as to involve the recognition of her government by England and France, and the raising of the blockade. Such prospects, continued from month to month, had an unhappy effect in weakening the popular sentiment of self-reliance, in turning the attention of the people to the result of external events, and in amusing their attention with misty illusions.
These prospects were vain. By the close of the year, the South had learned the lesson, that the most certain means of obtaining injury, scorn, and calumny from foreign people, was to attempt their conciliation or to seek their applause, and that not until she had proved herself independent of the opinions of Europe, and reached a condition above and beyond the help of England and France, was she likely to obtain their amity and justice.
It had been supposed in the South, that the interest of Enrope in the staples of cotton and tobacco would effect a raising of the blockade, at least by the fall of the year. The statistics on these subjects were thought to be conclusive. France derived an annual revenue of $38,000,000 from her monopoly of the tobacco trade; and Great Britain and her people, a revenue of $350,000,000 per annum from American cotton, Five millions of souls, in England, were interested in one way or the other in the cotton manufacture, and the South calcu. lated, with reason, that the blockade would be raised by foreign intervention, rather than that one-sixth of the population of the British Isles would be permitted to be thrown out of em ployment by a decree or fulmination of the Yankee govern ment at Washington.
Among the statesmen of Great Britain, however, a different calculation prevailed, and that was, as long as the possible contingencies of the future held out the least hope of avoiding the alternative of war with the Washington government, to strain a point to escape it. It was argued, that it would be cheaper for England to support, at the public expense, five millions of operatives, than to incur the cost, besides the unpleasantness of an embroilment in American affairs; and it was in this spirit of selfish calcnlation—the results of which were stated by Lord Palmerston in the declaration, that the “necessities” of England had not reached that point to require her to interfere, in any manner, in the American war—that it was ultimately decided by the British government to maintain her neutrality with reference to the blockade, as well as other incidents of the war.
About the fall of the year, the South had begun to feel se verely the effects of the blockade. Supplies of the usual goods, and eren provisions, were becoming scarce. The evils were augmented every day in the results of a baneful spirit of speculation, which indulged in moastrous extortions and corrupted the public spirit, making opportunities for mercenary adventure ont of the distresses and necessities of the country There was great suffering among the poor, and especially among refugees, who had fled to the cities from districts occupied by the enemy.
The resources of the South were such, however, that any thing like famine or actual starvation, of any portion of the people, was not to be apprehended. The changes which happened in the circumstances and prsuits of people, were not always as unfortunate as they appeared, and, in the end, not nnfrequently proved an advantage to them and to the prosperity of the country. Many new enterprises were started ; many zources of profitable labor were sougit out; and many instances of the diversion of popular industry were occasioned,