Monthly Record of Current Events, December 31.

Vicinity of Nashville.

OUR Record closes on the 31st of December. — Congress met on the 6th of December. In the Senate Mr. Farwell appeared from Maine in place of Mr. Fessenden, who had resigned to accept the post of Secretary of the Treasury. In the House Mr. Ingersoll took the place of Mr. Lovejoy, from Illinois, deceased; Mr. Knox that of Mr. Frank Blair, from Missouri, resigned; Mr. Townsend that of Mr. Stebbins from New York, resigned. Mr. Poston appeared as delegate from the Territory of Arizona; Mr. Worthington was qualified as member from the new State of Nevada. The only important changes in the standing committees are that in the Senate Mr. Sherman, of Ohio, is chairman of the Committee on Finance, in place of Mr. Fessenden, appointed Secretary of the Treasury, and Mr. Grimes, of Iowa, was appointed chairman of the Naval Committee in place of Mr. Hale, of New Hampshire. The credentials of five Representatives and two Senators, claiming seats from Louisiana, were presented and referred. The question will come up for consideration whether the election at which they were chosen was a valid one.

Hon. Salmon P. Chase, of Ohio, was nominated by the President, and unanimously confirmed by the Senate, as Chief Justice of the United States, to fill the vacancy occasioned by the death of the late Chief Justice Taney. Mr. Chase was born in New Hampshire, January 13,1808. He commenced the practice of the law at Cincinnati in 1831. In 1841 he first began to take a prominent part in politics, acting with that portion of the Democratic party opposed to the extension of slavery, and was elected United States Senator in 1849. On the disruption of the parties in 1852, Mr. Chase went over to the newly organized Republican party. In 1855 he was elected Governor of Ohio, and was re-elected in 1857, his second term closing in 1860. In that year he was one of the leading candidates for the Presidency, and had also been again chosen Senator. He resigned this post to accept the office of Secretary of the Treasury in Mr. Lincoln's Cabinet; he held this post until June 30,1864, when he resumed, and was succeeded by Mr. Fessenden. In 1864 he was suggested for the Presidency, but declined to become a candidate, and gave his support to Mr. Lincoln.

The President's Message opens with a brief resume of our relations with foreign Powers, which are pronounced to be "reasonably satisfactory." No mention, however, is made of our relations with France; the complications with Brazil, growing out of the capture of the Florida, are only briefly alluded to; and in consequence of the outrages on our Canadian frontier, the President recommends that notice shall be given that, after six months, the United States will be at liberty to increase its naval force on the northern lakes. He recommends further legislation to protect immigrants, and encourage emigration to this country. He estimates the production of gold and silver in the mineral region of the Pacific slope at $100,000,000 for the last year. — The movement for the total abolition of slavery is, he says, though short of success, still in the right direction. In Arkansas and Louisina loyal State Governments, with free Constitutions, have been organized; movements to the same end, though


less definite, have been made in Missouri, Kentucky, and Tennessee; Maryland is secure for freedom. The President recommends the passage by the present Congress of the Act, passed by the Senate at the last session, but which failed to receive the requisite two-thirds vote in the House, submitting to the States an amendment to the Constitution, prohibiting Slavery in the United States. The recent election shows, he says, that this Act will pass the next Congress, and it is merely a question of time when the matter shall be referred to the States. The vote at the late Presidential election is referred to as showing that, in spite of the waste of war, the loyal States have increased in population. A table was furnished showing that in 1860 the States which are now loyal cast 3,870,222 votes. The same States, with the addition of the two new States of Kansas and Nevada, cast, in 1864, 4,015,773 votes; showing, notwithstanding a decrease of nearly 150,000 votes in Kentucky, Missouri, and Maryland, a net increase of 145,751 votes; to which should be added at least 90,000 for the votes of soldiers in States which failed to pass laws enabling soldiers to vote. The table, as made up in the Message, was formed partly from estimates, and contained many inaccuracies; but the general result is nearly correct. To this increased strength of the Union should be also added the augmented population of the Territories, and the numbers of whites and blacks in the insurgent States who join us as our arms press back the enemy. — The President emphatically opposes all attempts at negotiation with the insurgent leader, who has repeatedly declared that he will accept no terms which do not involve the severance of the Union. This does not necessarily apply to his followers. Although he can not accept the Union they can. A year ago pardon and a general amnesty were offered to all except certain specified classes, and it was announced that these classes were within the contemplation of special clemency. The door for return is still open; but, adds the President, "The time may come, and probably will come, when public duty will demand that it be closed, and that in lieu more rigorous measures than heretofore shall adopted." The Message closes with an emphatic decleration that the President will retract nothing which he has heretofore said in respect to slavery. "While I remain in my present position," he says, "I shall not attempt to retract or modify the Emancipation Proclamation; nor shall I return to slavery any person who is free by the terms of that proclamation, or by any of the Acts of Congress. If the people should, by whatever acts or means, make it an Executive duty to re-enslave such persons, another, and not I, must be their instrument to perform it. In stating a single condition of peace, I mean simply to say that the war will cease on the part of the Government whenever it shall have ceased on the part of those who began it."

The Report of the Secretary of the Treasury furnishes an elaborate expose of the fiscal affairs of the country, and contains many practical suggestions. We can here present only a few of the essential points. Tthe fiscal year closed on the 1st of July, 1864; at which time the entire public debt amounted to $1,740,699,000, the interest upon which is $91,810,000, of which $56,000,000 is payable in coin. It the war continues probably this debt will be increased by $500,000,000 during the present year. The actual receipts and expenditures for the past fiscal year, closing June 30, 1864, were as follows:

From Customs $102,316,152 99
From Lands 588,333 29
From Direct Taxes 475,648 90
From Internal Revenne 109,741,134 10
From Miscellaneous Sources 47, 511,448 10
From Loans 623,443,929 13
Total receipts $884,076,646 77
War Department $600,791,842 97
Navy Department 85,733,292 79
Interest of Public Debt 53,685,421 69
Civil Service 27,505,599 46
Pensions and Indians 7,517,930 97
Total expenditures $865,234,087 86
Balance on hand$18,842,558 91

The two most important items of Miscellaneous sources are premiums on gold and silver, about $18,644,000, and Commutation Money, $12,451,000. The Secretary estimates the actual expenditures of the current fiscal year, ending June 80, 1865, at $895,729,000, and the receipts under existing laws at, $382,355,000, leaving to be provided for, $512,374,000. He hopes that Congress will so modify the Internal Revonue law as to produce $50,000,000 additional, which will leave $482,374,000 to be added to the public debt; which will then be, on the 1st of July, 1865, about $2,223,000,000. For the next fiscal year, ending June 30, 1866, for which provision must be made this year, he estimates a gross deficiency of about $422,00,000, making the public debt on the 1st of July, 1866, about $2,645,000,000. These estimates are, of course, based upon the supposition that the war continues. The Secretary recommends, among other things, that the Internal Revenue Tax be augmented; that the Income Tax be applied to all incomes, graduated, however, according to their amount; that the mineral domains of the United States be made available either by absolute sale or by renting them; and that there should be no banks of issue except such as are authorized by the national Government.

The Report of the Secretary of the Navy presents a comprehensive survey of the operations of that Department. The following are some of the leading points: We have now in service and under construction 671 vessels carrying 4610 guns, with a tonnage of 510,000, a net increase of 83 vessels, 167 guns, 42,000 tons. There are in the naval service about 51,000 men. During the year 324 vessels have been captured; the whole number during the war being 1379, of which 267 are steamers. The gross proceeds of the sale of prize property is nearly $14,500,000, and a large amount is still under adjudication. The entire expense of the Naval Department from March 4,1861, to November 1,1864, has been $288,647,000.

According to the Report of the Postmaster-General the expenditures of the Department, during the year ending June 1, 1864, were $12,644,786 20, the receipts $12,468,283 78, leaving a deficit of $206,652 42; so that, were the franked matter which passes through the mails paid for, the Department would now for the first time be more than self-sustaining.

The Report of the Secretary of War has not been published.

The action of Congress thus far has been mainly confined to the consideration of measures proposed for action. In the Senate, the following are the principal bills introduced, and subjects of inquiry referred to the appropriate committees: That the President inform what proposition of aid for rebels


had been received: answered that a request to distribute among rebel prisoners Ł17,000 collected at a bazar in Liverpool, had been made and refused. — For establishing a home for disabled soldiers and sailors. — For constructing revenue cutters on the lakes. — Thanking Captain Winslow and Lieutenant Cashing. — Petition of General Weitzel and others for increase of pay. — To inquire into the expediency of an Act to increase the revenue by a tax on sales and fares; and to retrench the currency by prohibiting the establishment of additional banks. — Resolutions by Mr. Davis, of Kentucky, for consolidating Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire into one State; Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island into another; Maryland, Delaware, and a part of Virginia into another: and that the President and Vice-President of the United States shall be chosen alternately from the Free and Slave States. — To compel all vessels engaged in foreign trade to take one American boy for each 500 tons. — Authorizing the President to transfer a gun-boat to the Republic of Liberia. — Declaring wives and children of colored soldiers to be free. — Whether an army corps is necessary to defend our Northern frontier. — Whether it is expedient to enroll all male citizens, irrespective of color, in the militia. — Bill passed removing disqualification for carrying the mails by reason of color. — The following bills have passed the House; those which have also passed the Senate being specially noted: Establishing a uniform system of Baukruptcy, to take effect June 1, 1865. — Requesting the President to give notice of the termination of the Reciprocity Treaty with Great Britain. — Providing that any alien of twenty-one who has been honorably discharged from the army or navy may become a citizen without previous declaration. — The Senate bill providing for the construction of six revenue cutters on the lakes. — Dropping from the army roll all generals who have been for three months out of service, except their absence is occasioned by wounds or disability incurred in service, or by being a prisoner or under parole. — The Senate joint resolution thanking Captain Winslow and Lieutenant Gushing. — Resolution declaring the right of Congress to shape the foreign policy of the United States. — The Senate bill creating the rank of Vice-Admiral, of equal grade with the Lieutenant-General in the army with a pay of $7000 when at sea, $6000 when on shore duty, and $5000 when waiting orders. This bill was immediately signed by the President, who nominated Admiral Farragut for the post, and the nomination was confirmed by the Senate. — In the House the following are the principal bills introduced, and subjects of inquiry referred to the appropriate committees: To prohibit the exportation or sale at a premium of gold and silver; laid on the table. — To exempt from tax the inheritance of widows in their husbands estates. — What caused the failure of General Banks's Red River expedition? — To prohibit the sale of goods in rebel territory, and to allow the purchase for cash of the products of such territory. — To amend the Constitution so as to apportion representatives to voters. — What justice is due to soldiers held beyond their terms of enlistment? — Shall bounties be discontinued, and the pay of soldiers increased? — To include sailors in the bill naturalizing soldiers. — Shall there be an ad valorem, tax on sales? — For dropping unemployed officers from the navy roll. — Shall persons going abroad to escape the draft be denationalized? — To inquire into the expediency of modifying the pension law.

Our last Record left General Sherman just setting out on his adventurous march through Georgia. The order for the expedition was issued on the 8th of November from Kingston, Georgia, northwest from Atlanta, around which place the army was again concentrated. On the 15th Atlanta was evacuated, the principal buildings haying been destroyed, and Sherman's army began, its march toward the coast, nearly 200 miles distant in a straight line, and about 300 by the most direct traveled routes. The army marched in two main columns, which, with its detachments, swept a belt of territory about 60 miles wide, comprising a fertile country abounding in supplies. For nearly a month our only intelligence was gained through hostile sources. Milledgeville, the capital of Georgia, was occupied on the 20th by a small detachment, which soon left to rejoin their column, while other detachments threatened Macon and Augusta. The march of the main columns was leisurely, the only opposition encountered being to detached corps, Millen, where the great body of Union prisoners had been for a time confined, was taken on the 2d of December; but the prisoners had been removed. On the 9th Captain Duncan, one of Sherman's scouts, left the army, descended the Ogechee River, and brought to General Foster, at Hilton Head, the first direct tidings from Sherman. On the 12th the whole army was within ten miles of Savannah. On the 13th Fort M'Allister, which commands the approach to Savannah by sea, was taken by storm. On that day Sherman forwarded his first dispatch to the War Department from the deck of a vessel. He wrote: "The army is in most splendid order, and equal to any thing. Our march was most agreeable, and we were not at all molested by guerrillas. We have not lost a wagon on the trip, but have gathered in a large supply of negroes, horses, and mules, and our teams are in far better condition than when we started. I regard Savannah as already gained." General Hardee had been placed in command of Savannah, with about 15,000 men. It had been hoped that these might be captured with the city; but it was found to be impossible to invest the place so closely to prevent their escape, and on the 20th Hardee got off with his army. Savannah was occupied by Sherman on the 21st. On the 22d he wrote to the President: "I beg to present to you as a Christmas gift the city of Savannah, with 150 heavy guns, and plenty of ammunition, and also about 25,000 bales of cotton." General Foster, in his dispatch of the same day, says: "the captures include 800 prisoners, 150 guns, 13 locomotives in good order, 190 cars, a large supply of ammunition and materials of war, 3 steamers, and 33,000 bales of cotton safely stowed in warehouses."

While Sherman was accomplishing his march through Georgia, Hood was operating against Thomas, who fell back in the direction of Nashville. The Confederate cavalry, under Forrest, on the 29th of November, came up with our forces, under Wilson, at Spring Hill, Tennessee, where a brisk though partial action ensued, in which Forrest was repulsed; but our forces kept falling back to Franklin, 18 miles south of Nashville. Here they were attacked, on the 30th, by the entire force of the enemy. A severe battle ensued, the Confederates repeatedly making most desperate charges upon our intrenchments. At one time the day seemed lost; but a vigorous charge restored the fortunes of the day, and the assailants were repulsed with great loss. The loss


of the enemy is put down at about 5000 killed and wounded, and 1000 prisoners. Our loss was about 2500. Our forces, however, fell back upon Nashville, and in consequence the Confederates claim a victory at Franklin. Hood followed, and set himself down to besiege Nashville, throwing up lines of investment. On the 15th of December Thomas assumed the offensive against Hood, who held a strong position on the southern approaches to Nashville. Thomas's line was formed with Wilson's cavalry on the right, then A. J. Smith, Wood, and Steedman, Schofield's Corps being in reserve. After an opening fire from the batteries Steedman made a strong demonstration on the enemy's right, the real attack being designed for their centre and left. Wood carried the strong works at the centre. Our batteries then advanced, and Smith assailed the hostile left; Schofield came up on Smith's right, outflanking the enemy, who began to give way. Our right was thus thrown between the river and the Confederate left, which was rolled back on the centre, Wilson's cavalry now pushed forward; and our whole line was advanced in the face of a hot fire. The enemy's works were carried, and he fell back in confusion, leaving his cannon and many prisoners. It was now night, and the action was suspended. It was renewed the next morning, with still more decided success, the enemy being successively driven from his lines of intrenchments, falling back in the direction of Franklin, the scene of the battle of the 30th of November. On the 17th Hood was pressed back beyond Franklin, where he left 2500 wounded. the pursuit was kept up on the 18th, but was partially interrupted by heavy rains on the 19th, Hood continually falling back, losing guns and prisoners. The latest accounts, which come down to December 27, represent that. Hood had readied the Tennessee River, which he was endeavoring to cross. — In twenty days Hood's losses, as nearly as can be estimated, were 9000 killed and wounded, and 10,000 prisoners, of whom 2500 were wounded, making a net loss of 10,500 men, and 51 cannon, being about one-third of his entire force, and more than half of his guns. His loss is especially heavy in officers, six generals having been killed, six wounded, and six captured.

Besides these leading operations in the South and West, several minor operations of considerable importance have been undertaken. Toward the close of November General Canby sent expeditions from Baton Rouge and Vicksburg to co-operate with Sherman. That from Vicksburg moved toward Jackson, destroying bridges on the Mississippi Central Railroad, cutting off Hood from a large quantity of supplies which had been accumulated for him at Jackson. The column from Baton Rouge


advanced in the direction of Mobile. He had reached Pascagoula on the 14th of December. Three days before, Governor Watts, of Alabama, issued a proclamation calling upon the people of the State to defend Mobile, which was threatened both by land and water. — At Ashbyville, Kentucky, December 17, General M'Cook debated the Confederate General Lyon, who had invaded the State. — There has been some skirmishing in the Valley of the Shenandoah, but with no very important results.

A very important expedition has just been made in Southwestern Virginia. In this region, near the Tennesses border, are situated the valuable saltworks and lead mines of Saltville and Leadville. One or two expeditions had been sent to destroy these, but without success. Breckinridge, who commanded in this region, defeated Gillem on the 12th of November. Gillem was reinforced, and the command of the whole body, now numbering 6000, was taken by General Stoneman, who organized another expedition, against the salt and lead works, under the immediate command of General Burbridge. This expedition started on the 12th. On the march they successively met and dispersed scattered bodies of the enemy, and succeeded in reaching Saltville on the 20th, which they occupied long enough to effect the thorough destruction of the works. Besides the destruction of the salt and lead works, among the most important in the Confederacy, General Burbridge enumerates among the results of his enterprise the destruction of the bridges on the East Tennessee and Virginia Railroad, the seizure of 13 trains of cars with their engines, the capture of 2000 horses, 1000 mules, 24 officers, and 845 men.

The only important operation of the Army of the Potomac during the month is a raid made under the lead of General Warren upon the Weldon Railroad. The expedition comprised Warren's Fifth Corps, Mott's Division of the Second, and Gregg's cavalry. This force set out on the 7th of December, having been previously withdrawn from the lines around Petersburg. In the midst of a driving rain, which continued all day and the next night, Warren moved rapidly to the Nottaway River, which he crossed by means of a pontoon. The next day, leaving a cavalry guard at the crossing, and protected on his flanks by cavalry, he continued his march by Sussex Court House toward Nottaway Bridge. This point was covered by the enemy's cavalry, which was steadily driven back. The bridge was reached at noon and destroyed. It was 200 feet long, and spanned the Nottoway River. The column, now secure against any attack from Petersburg, destroyed the railroad south of the bridge for a distance of eight miles. The track was lifted up, ties and rails together, heaped in piles, and burned. Jarret's depot was burned early in the morning of the 9th, and the work of destruction continued thence southward. During the day two bridges — each 60 feet long — were burned, and at night Warren had reached Bellfield Station, near the Meherrin River. Twenty miles of the railroad had been completely destroyed, and no opposition had been encountered. A reconnoissance toward Hicksford on the river having developed the fact that the enemy was strongly posted at that point, with considerable artillery, Warren turned northward on the 10th. On the return the town of Sussex Court House was burned in retaliation for the murder of several of our soldiers by the enemy at that point. A large number of contrabands accompanied the returning column. In estimating the value of this raid it must be remembered that Lee had previously contrived to convey a large amount of supplies to his army by means of the Boydton plank-road, which connected the Southside Railroad with the point where the Weldon had been interrupted. He had also nearly completed a branch railroad from Stony Creek Station to the Southside Road. The portion of the railroad destroyed by Warren is south of Stony Creek Station, and until the road is repaired Lee is entirely cut off from eastern North Carolina, and from the portion of Virginia east of the Weldon Road. The work was done in three days, and it was effected with the loss of less than one hundred men.

On the 13th of December a great naval and military expedition started from Fortress Monroe. The naval portion, under Admiral W. A. Porter, comprised 65 vessels of war, including the Ironsides, and five "Monitors." Besides these there were more than a hundred transports. The military force, under General Butler, with whom was General Weitzel, numbered about 7000. The expedition set out under sealed orders; but it soon transpired that its object was to assail Fort Fisher, at the mouth of Cape Fear River, commanding the approaches to Wilmington, the only considerable port now held by the Confederates, through which for more than a year they have gained the greater part of their supplies from abroad. Large hopes had been entertained from a new experiment in warfare, which was to explode a vessel loaded with powder as nearly as possible under the walls of the fort. The steamer Louisiana was selected for this purpose. The vessels experienced rough weather, but rode it out without any serious accident, the "Monitors especially" behaving beautifully," though one of them, the Mahopac, sprung a leak. On the 20th the fleet met at the appointed rendezvous, some twenty-five miles at sea from the fort. For two days bad weather prevented any effective operations; but on the 23d the Louisiana, Commander Rhind, was directed to undertake its mission. With more than 200 barrels of powder on board, she was towed within sight of the fort. She had been fitted up so as to resemble a Confederate blockade-runner, and was mistaken for such, and was not fired upon from the fort. She was successfully run near the beach, within 500 yards of the fort. The small crew having set her on fire, escaped by boats. At a quarter before two on the morning of the 24th the explosion took place. Those on the fleet, which lay some miles away, had no means of knowing the amount of damage sustained, only that the shock was far less than had been anticipated. Subsequent information indicates that no serious damage was done to the fort; at all events the explosion of the magazines, which had been hoped for, was not attained. At daylight on the 24th the fleet got under way, formed in line of battle, and proceeded to bombard the fort. The bombardment began about noon. In an hour and a quarter, according to the report of Admiral Porter, the fire of the fort was completely silenced, and two of its magazines had been blown up. A moderate fire was kept up until night, in the hope of attracting the attention of the transports containing the cooperating land-force to the spot. Our casualties this day were occasioned almost entirely by the bursting of six 100-pounder, Parrott guns on as many vessels; by these 13 men were killed and 35


wounded. A shell from the fort passed through the boiler of the Mackinaw, badly scalding ten or twelve persons. The Osceola was also struck by a shell near the magazine, and for a short time was in a sinking condition; but the leak was finally stopped. The bombardment was suspended by the approach of night. The next morning, the transports having arrived, a plan of attack was arranged by Porter and Weitzel. The navy was again to assail the fort, while troops were landed to storm it. About 3000 troops were landed. Some of the outside works were carried, and nearly 300 prisoners taken. Weitzel's skirmishing lines were advanced close to Fort Fisher. A few of the pickets, under fire from the boats, actually scaled the parapet but, according to the account of General Butler, the work was found by Weitzel too strong to be taken without a regular siege. As soon as darkness caused the naval force to cease, the works were again fully manned. The weather being threatening, and the southwest wind, which had arisen, preventing any further landing through the surf, Butler ordered the troops to re-embark Seeing, he says, "that nothing further can be done by the land-forces, I shall sail for Hampton Roads as soon as the transport fleet can be got in order." The expedition certainly wholly failed of its object. There is evidently a wide difference of opinion between the naval and military commanders as to the necessity of abandoning the attack. Butler and Weitzel think that the fort was substantially uninjured, as a defensive work, by the naval assault, and that it was too strong, and too strongly manned, to be taken by the force at their command. Porter thinks that the fort was effectually reduced by his attack, and that while yielding to the opinion of Weitzel, it would have proved no very difficult task for the land-force to have taken it. "At all events," he adds, "I can not help thinking that it was worth while to make the attempt, after arriving so far."

The case of the St. Albans raiders finally came up before Justice Coursal, of Montreal, on the 13th of December. The Justice decided that by the law the warrant under which the prisoners were arrested should be signed by the Governor-General; this not being the case, he had no jurisdiction in the Batter, and should discharge the prisoners. They were accordingly set at liberty, and the money which they had seized from the St. Albans banks was given to them. The liberated prisoners at once made off in different directions. This decision caused intense feeling in the United States. General Dix, who commands the Northern Department, issued an order directing military commanders on the frontier to shoot down marauders, and, if necessary, to pursue them into Canada. The later clause of the order was countermanded by the President, probably on information that the action of Judge Coursal was disapproved by the Canadian authorities. The Governor-General of Canada ordered the re-arrest of the raiders, and several of them, including Young, the leader, have been apprended, and are again in custody. Meanwhile an official order was given by our Government, directing that, except in case of immigrants directly entering an American port by sea, no traveler should be allowed to enter the United States from a foreign country without a passport, properly signed. This direction was designed to apply especially to persons coining from the British provinces.

On the night, of the 25th of November an attempt was made to burn the city of New York. Fires were kindled in several of the large hotels, which adjoin the principal theatres. These attempts were made by persons who took lodgings in the hotels, the fires being kindled by means of a mixture of phosphorus and oil. The actual damage done was very slight. It is believed that the attempt was made by emissaries of the Confederate Government, and in consequence an order was issued that all persons from the insurgent States, residing in New York, should report themselves for registry, upon pain, in case of neglect, of being treated as spies. The result of this order was to show that the wives and families of several distinguished Confederate leaders were residing in New York.

The Confederate cruiser Florida, captured by the Wachusett, was, while lying at anchor in Hampton Roads, run into on the 19th of November, by the army transport Alliance, and sunk in nine fathoms water. The Brazilian Government has officially represented that the capture of the Florida in Brazilian waters was a gross outrage upon neutral rights, and demanded apology and reparation. The Secretary of State replied that jealousy of foreign intervention was a cardinal principle in the policy of the United States. The President, therefore, disavowed and regretted the proceedings in the harbor of Babia; would suspend Captain Collins, and direct him to appear before a court-martial. The Consul at Bahia, having admitted that he had advised and incited the captain, would also be dismissed; the flag of Brazil would receive from the United States navy the honor customary in the intercourse of friendly maritime powers. The crew of the Florida would also be set at liberty, to seek a refuge wherever they could find it, with the hazard of recapture when beyond the jurisdiction of the Government of the United States. The Secretary adds, that the Government does not give credit to the charges of falsehood, treachery, and deception brought against the captain and consul; and also protests against the recognition by the Brazilian Government of the Confederates as belligerents, as being an act of intervention derogatory of the law of nations, unfriendly and injurious to the United States; but he says it does not belong to the naval or military officers of the United States, nor to consuls, to choose the time and manner of asserting the rights and of redressing the wrongs of the United States.

The steamship North America left New Orleans Dec. 16, with a crew of 44, and 215 passengers, most of whom were sick soldiers. On the night of the 22d the vessel sunk at sea. Of those on board 197 were lost, and only 67 saved.

On the 20th of December the President issued a proclamation calling for 300,000 volunteers for one, two, or three years. If this call is not previously filled, a draft will be ordered on the 15th of February to meet the deficiency.

Hon. William L. Dayton, the American Minister to France, died suddenly of apoplexy on the 1st of December, at Paris, at the age of 57 years. In 1856 he was the Republican nominee for Vice-President, Mr. Fremont being the candidate for the Presidency. They were defeated by Buchanan and Breckinridge, who received 174 electoral votes, Fremont and Dayton having 114, and 8 being cast for Fillmore and Donelson. — — Hon. George M. Dallas, Vice-President of the United States from 1844 to 1848, and Minister to England from 1856 to 1860, died suddenly at Philadelphia on the 31st of December, aged 74 years.