Monthly Record of Current Events, October 8.

OUR Record closes on the 8th of October. Up to this time nothing of special importance has taken place between the two great armies lying almost within view of each other near Washington. Early in September the Confederates advanced their outposts toward the Potomac, finally occupying Munson's Hill, within sight of the National Capitol. Toward the close of the month this position was abandoned, and the army fell back toward Fairfax Court House, the main body occupying nearly the same position as before the battle of Bull Run. Skirmishes between advance-guards and reconnoiteriug parties have taken place at different points along the line of the Potomac, but none of these have led to any important result. In a reconnoissance toward Fall's Church, on the night of the 29th of September, two bodies of our troops, mistaking each other for the enemy, opened fire, by which 10 were killed, and about 20 wounded. The number and condition of the troops in the two main armies is carefully concealed. The most reliable estimates, which are merely conjectural, represent each at about 150,000 men. It is clear that the condition and efficiency of the National army is greatly improved since General M'Clellan has been placed in command. Of the condition of the Confederates the accounts are unreliable: some represent them as in the highest state of efficiency; while according to others they are suffering severely from sickness and privation.

In Western Virginia a series of engagements has taken place, the results of which have been in favor of the National forces. On the 11th of September General Rosecrans attacked tho Confederate troops, commanded by General John R. Floyd, Secretary of War under Mr. Buchanan, at Carnifex Ferry, driving him from his position. He crossed the Gauley River, destroying the bridge behind him, and thus escaped pursuit. Our loss was 20 killed and 100 wounded. Among the killed was Colonel Lowe, of the Ohio Twelfth, a sketch of whose life will be found in another part of this Magazine. — From the 12th to the 10th a series of skirmishes took place about Cheat Mountain, between the Confederates, under General Lee, and our troops, under General Reynolds, the general result of which was that the enemy were repulsed and fell back. Among the killed were John A. Washington, late proprietor of Mount Yernon. — A reconnoissance made on the 3d of October against the position of the Confederates at Greenbrier resulted in a sharp action, in which, though no decisive result was attained, the Confederate loss greatly exceeded our own, which is stated at 10 killed and 20 wounded. We give our own losses as put down in the official reports; those of the Confederates can only be estimated, their official reports not being accessible.

The most important events of the month have occurred in Kentucky and Missouri.

In Kentucky a strong effort has been made by the Executive of the State to keep it in a neutral position, with the design of acting as a mediator. But at the State election, held early in August, Mr. Garrow, the Union candidate for State Treasurer, received 83,000 votes, while but 16,000 were cast for two Secession candidates, showing a Union majority of 67,000. In each branch of the Legislature the majority in favor of the Union was about three to one. Forces had, in the mean time, under various names, been organized on both sides, and large bodies of the Confederates were gathered in Tennessee, ready to pass into Kentucky. It was clear that, in case absolute neutrality could not be maintained, the sympathy of the State Government was in favor of the Confederates, while that of the people, as manifested in the election, was with the Union. On the 19th of August Governor Magoffin sent Commissioners to the President of the United States, bearing a letter stating that the people of Kentucky


wished to take no part in the pending war, and urging the immediate withdrawal of the United States forces, organizing and encamped within the State. President Lincoln replied that these forces were composed wholly of Kentuckians; that he did not believe that it was the wish of the people of the State that they should be withdrawn. He therefore declined to comply with the request of the Governor. The reply of the President closes with a regret that he can not find in the letter of Governor Magoffin any intimation that he desires the preservation of the Federal Union. — The Legislature of Kentucky assembled at Frankfort on the 2d of September. By a vote of 77 to 20, in the House, the United States flag was ordered to be displayed over the Capitol. This vote was an index to the sentiment of the Legislature. From the outset there was a conflict between the Governor and the Legislature. Governor Magoffin, in his Message, asserts the right of the State to maintain a neutral position; Kentucky had not sympathized, he said, with either party, while both had violated her neutrality. The State should raise all the military force that was needed. — On the 4th of September, almost simultaneously with the meeting of the, Legislature, the Confederate forces from Tennessee, commanded by General Leonidas Polk, formerly Bishop, advanced into Kentucky, and took possession of Columbus. On the 9th General Polk dispatched a message to Governor Magoffin, justifying this measure on the ground that he had been assured that the Federal troops were about to take possession of the place, which would seriously endanger West Tennessee. His action had been submitted to the President of the Confederate States, and had been approved on the ground of military necessity. But he would withdraw his troops from Kentucky, provided that the Federal forces should also be withdrawn at the same time. The Legislature then passed a series of resolutions declaring that the neutrality of the State had been "grossly infringed by the so-called Confederate forces;" that the Governor be requested to call out the military force to repel invasion; that the United States be invoked to aid the State; that General Anderson, the defender of Fort Sumter, be requested to enter at once upon the discharge of his duties in this military district; and that the people of Kentucky be called upon to aid in "repelling and driving out the wanton violators of our peace and neutrality, the lawless invaders of our soil." These resolutions having been vetoed by the Governor, were passed over his veto. He was also directed to issue a proclamation ordering the Confederate troops to evacuate Kentucky; a resolution ordering the National forces also to leave the State was negatived. Governor Magoffin thereupon issued a proclamation in the following terms: "The Government of the Confederate States, the State of Tennessee, and all others concerned, are hereby informed that Kentucky expects the Confederate or Tennessee troops to be withdrawn from her soil unconditionally." Meanwhile Confederate troops were poured into the State in large numbers. On the west, Generals Polk and Pillow concentrated large forces at Columbus; on the east, General Zollieoffer took possession of Cumberland, near the Virginia line, announcing to the Governor of Kentucky that the safety of Tennessee demanded the occupation of that place, and that he should retain possession of it until the Union forces were withdrawn and the Union camps broken up. General Buckner, formerly commander of the State Guard, with a large body of forces in the Confederate interest, appeared in the northwestern part of the State, and pushed forward a party as far as Muldraugh's Hill, about 45 miles from Louisville. They fell back from this position to Bowling Green, an important strategic position at the junction of the two railways which enter Tennessee, from which place he issued a proclamation, dated September 18, stating that he had come at the head of a force "to aid the Government of Kentucky in carrying out the strict neutrality desired by the people." A large portion of the Southern part of the State now appears to be in full possession of the Confederate forces. Meanwhile the Union men are active. The Legislature have passed bills calling out the military force of the State, and raising a war loan of $2,000,000. Arrests of a number of prominent men have been made; among these are James B. Clay, a son of Henry Clay, and Ex-Governor Morehead, the latter having been sent to Fort Lafayette. A bill passed the Senate, requesting Senators Breckinridge and Powell to resign. Mr. Breckinridge is said to have joined the Confederates in Virginia. The health of General Anderson unfitting him for active service, the military district under his command has been assigned to General Sherman. Every thing indicates that Kentucky will soon be the scene of active military operations.

In Missouri the battle of Springfield, and the retreat of the Union forces to Rolla — about 125 miles, instead of 50, as stated in our last Record — left the southwestern part of the State open to the Confederate forces under Price and M'Cullough. General Price advanced northward upon Lexington, where a body of National troops under Colonel Mulligan were intrenched. The attack commenced on the 12th of September, and continued until the 22d, when, finding himself surrounded by greatly superior forces, and cut off from water, Colonel Mulligan surrendered. His forces numbered about 3500 men. Our loss in killed and wounded is stated at about 130, while that of the enemy is reported to have been much greater. General Price, however, in his official report, says, "Our entire loss in this series of engagements amounts to 25 killed and 72 wounded. The enemy's loss was much greater. The visible fruits of this almost bloodless victory are great. About 3500 prisoners, among whom are Colonels Mulligan, Marshall, Peabody, and 120 other commissioned officers, five pieces of artillery, and two mortars; over 33,000 stand of infantry arms, a large number of sabres, about 750 horses, many sets of cavalry equipments, wagons, teams, ammunition, more than $100,000 worth of commissary stores, and a large amount of other property, have fallen into our hands. In addition to this I obtained the restoration of the Great Seal of the State, and the Public Records, which had been stolen from their proper custodian, and about $900,000 in money, of which the bank at this place had been robbed, and which I have caused to be returned to it." At the latest intelligence, General Price is said to have evacuated Lexington, and General Fremont, with the entire force under his command, to be advancing in that direction with the purpose of offering battle.

President Lincoln has addressed a letter to General Fremont in relation to his proclamation enfranchising the slaves of the insurgents. He says: "Assured that you, upon the ground, could better judge of the necessities of your position than I could at this distance, on seeing your proclamation of August 30. I perceived no general objection to it; the particular clause, however, in relation to the


confiscation of property and the liberation of slaves appeared to me to be objectionable in its non-conformity to the act of Congress, passed the 6th of last August, upon the same subjects, and hence I wrote you expressing my wish that that clause should be modified accordingly. Your answer just received expresses the preference on your part that I should make an open order for the modification, which I very cheerfully do. It is therefore ordered that the said clause of said proclamation be so modified, held, and construed as to conform with and not to transcend the provisions on the same subject contained in the act of Congress entitled ‘An act to confiscate property used for insurrectionary purposes,’ approved August 6, 1861, and that said act be published at length with this order." — The Secretary of State has issued a circular explaining and denning the confiscating act of Congress. He says: "No property is confiscated or subject to forfeiture except such as is in transit, or provided for transit to or from insurrectionary States, or used for the promotion of the insurrection. Real estate, bonds, promissory notes, moneys on deposit, and the like, are therefore not subject to seizure or confiscation in the absence of evidence of such unlawful acts. All officers, while vigilant in the prevention of the conveyance of property to or from the insurrectionary States, or the use of it for insurrectionary purposes, are expected to be careful in avoiding unnecessary vexation and cost by seizures not warranted by law."

Naval preparations on a large scale are pushed forward with great vigor, with the presumed object of making a formidable expedition to some prominent point on the Southern coast. — Several valuable prizes have been taken by our blockading squadron. — On the 13th of September the Southern privateer Judith, lying at Pensacola opposite Fort Pickens, was cut out by a boat expedition from the United States steamer Colorado, and burned at the wharf. — The steamer Bermuda, which appears to have been purchased in England and loaded with arms and munitions by the Confederate Commissioners, succeeded in running the blockade at Savannah. It is said that she is to be fitted out as a privateer. — On the 1st of October the steam transport Fanny, dispatched from Fort Monroe to Chickamacomico Inlet, with stores and supplies, and having on board twenty-five soldiers of the Twenty-fifth Indiana Regiment, was cut out by three Confederate steamers. The crew escaped to the shore in boats; but the soldiers were taken prisoners, and the vessel and cargo were captured. — The Emperor of Russia has addressed a letter to his Minister at Washington, which has been communicated to our Government. He says that for eighty years the Union has exhibited to the world a prosperity without example in the annals of history; and it would be deplorable if the compact which has made the strength of the country should now be broken up. United, the different interests of the country perfect themselves; isolated, they are paralyzed. The struggle, he says, can not be indefinitely prolonged, nor lead to the total destruction of either party; sooner or later there must be some settlement; and he trusts that it may be reached before a useless effusion of blood and squandering of strength shall have brought about the ruin of the commercial and political power of the country. Russia and the United States, he adds, placed at the extremities of two worlds, and both in the ascending period of their development, have a natural community of interests and sympathies, of which they have already given proofs to each other. Without touching upon the questions which divide the United States, the Emperor gives assurance that in any event the American nation may count upon his cordial sympathy during the important crisis through which it is now passing.

The Legislature of Maryland was to have assembled on the 17th of September, at Frederick. A large majority of the members were known to be in favor of Secession, and the passage of an ordinance to that effect was anticipated. The meeting of the Legislature was prevented by the Baltimore police, who arrested the clerks of the Houses and a large number of the members; these were detained for twenty-four hours. Meanwhile the Union members met in caucus, and resolved not to meet in Assembly. There being no quorum left, most of the other members, who had been released on taking the oath of allegiance, left the place, and no formal opening of the Legislature was attempted.

A combined English, French, and Spanish naval expedition is to be fitted out against Mexico. By the terms of the treaty entered into between these Powers, their combined naval forces will occupy the principal Mexican ports on the Gulf, and will sequestrate the revenue accruing from customs, retaining one half to be applied to the payment of Mexican indebtedness, and making over the other half to the Mexican Government. Absolute war is not contemplated; but in case any opposition is attempted, an effectual blockade will be established. — M. Rouher, the French Minister of Agriculture and Commerce, has issued a circular clearly defining the position of his Government on the subject of blockade. He says that the right can not be denied to one belligerent, recognized as such, to injure the other by all direct and legitimate means, such as "seizing upon its possessions, besieging its cities, or blockading its ports. The exercise of the right of blockade involves the natural consequence of interdicting access to the blockaded places by other Powers. It is incontestable that the latter are sufferers by this interruption of their habitual commercial relations; but they are not justified in making complaint, for they are only indirectly compromised thereby. The effectiveness of a blockade is now admitted to be the essential condition of its validity. From the moment that there are upon the spot to which a belligerent means to interdict access sufficient forces to prevent approach without exposure to certain danger, the neutral is constrained, whatever injury he may experience, to respect the blockade. If he violate it, he exposes himself to be treated as an enemy. It is an error to suppose that a blockade exists only when notice of it has been given diplomatically, and that it is not binding upon neutral ships which have left their country previously to this notification. A blockade is binding the moment it is effectively established; the material result of a material fact, it does not require to be otherwise constituted. . . . . . . . That neutrals ignore the facts imports but little. If one of their vessels presents itself for the purpose of entering a blockaded port, the belligerent has the right to signify its prohibition. It is undoubtedly the general usage for a Government to inform others of the measures of a blockade to which it has recourse. But this notice, which is not an absolute rule, has no value of itself. . . . . . An agreement has now been made to the effect that the neutral shall only be considered duly warned of the existence of a blockade, when the warning is given on the spot."