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WASHINGTON: T11UK8IUY, JUNE XI, 1863.
Weekly Natlenul lutelltfeucrr Br QALES 6c SEATON. JAMBS 0. WML LING, ASSOCIATE EDITOR. The subscription priee of this paper for a year ia Two Dollars, payable in advance. A reduction of 20 per oent. (one-fifth of ike full charge! will be made to any one who ahall order and pay for, at one time, ten copiea of the Weekly paper; and a reduetion of 25 per oent. (or one-fourth of the full charge) to any one who will order and pay for, at oue time, twenty or more copiea. No aeeounti being kept for thia paper, it will not be aent to any one iinleaa paid for in advance, nor any longer than the time for which it is paid. THE BETALIATOKY CODE. We published a tew days ago the joint resolu tions passed by the Congress of the Insurgent States, and approved by Gen. Jeffmon Davis, affirming that the proclamations of the President of the United States, dated reapeotivaiy September 22d, 1862, and January 1st, 1863, and 4he other measures of the Government of the United States and of its authorities, commanders, and forces de signed or tending to emancipate slaves in the Con federate States, or to abduct suoh slaves, or to in oite them to insurrection, or to employ negroes in the war against the Confederate States, or to over throw the institution of African slavery and bring on a servile war in those States, " are inconsistent with the spirit of those usages which in modern warfare prevail among civilized nations, and may therefore be properly and lawfully repressed by retaliation." It was accordingly resolved that? " Every white peraon, being a commissioned officer, or acting aa aueh, who, during the preaent war, ahall commaud negroes or mulattoes in arma against the Confederate States, or who shall arm, tram, organize, or prepare negroes or mulattoes for military service agaimt the Confederate States, or who shall voluntarily aid ue gro?s or mulattoes in auy military enterprise, attack, or conflict in tuch service, shall be deemed as inciting servile inourrectioD, and shall, if captured, be put to death, or be otherwise punished at the discretion of the court." All persons charged with any offence punishable under these regulations are to be tried before the military court attached to the army or oorps by the troops of whioh they shall have been captured, or by such other military court as " the President may direct, and in suoh manner and under such regulations as the President shall prescribe, and, after conviction, the Prerident may commute the punithment in suoh manner and on such terms as he may deem proper." Under the same prescriptions it is declared that? "All negroes and mulattoes who sball be engaged in war or be taken id arms sgainst the Confederate States, or shall give aid or comfort to the enemies of the Confede rate State*, shsll, when captured in the Confederate States, be delivered to the authorities of the State or States in which they shall be captured, to be dealt with according to the present or future laws of such State or States." As our Government hai recently plaoed several regiments of negroes in the field, commanded by white offioers, it is obvious that these menaced severities of the insurgent authorities must impose on it the necessity of protecting from outrage all men who have taken the military oath in the ser vice of the United States, for all such, without re gard to color, are equally entitled to the protection of the Government they serve and under whose flag they fight. This is a principle of law which will be oonoeded equally by those who affirm and those who question the expediency of employing negro troops as regular soldiers in the present war. Nor has tho responsibility thns incurred by the employment of negro troops in the Federal service been overlooked by the President. On the 24th of April last be caused certain " instructions for the government of the armies of the United States in the held," prepared by Francis Lieber, LL.D., and revised by a board of offioers, to be published for the information of all conoerned. Among these " instructions" are the following: " 57. So aoon a* a man ia armed by a aovrreign Govern ment, and takea the aolditr'a oath of fidelity, be ia a belli gerent; hia killing, wounding, or other warlike acta are no individual Crimea or oflencea. No belligerent baa a right to deolare that enemiea of a certain elaaa, color, or condi tion, when properly organised aa aoldiera, will not be treated by hiui aa public eneuiiea. " 58. The law of nationa knowa of no distinc'ioo of color, and if an enemy of the United Btatea abould enalave and aell any captured peraona of their army, it would be a caae fir the aevereat retnliation, if not redreaaed upon com plaint. The United Statea cannot retaliate by enalave uipnt; therefore, death muat be the retaliation for thia crime againat the law of nationa." It will thus be seen that the President, by ap proving these declarations, has already met the issue threatened to be made by the insurgent au thority s, should these latter unfortunately proceed to the extremities indicated. Whatever may be their natural irritation at the species of warfare thus brought against them by the Government, we are persuaded that they will not earry into effect so muoh of their resolved policy as denouoces the penalty of death in punishment of all white offioers, taken prisoners of war, who are found in ' oommand of negro troops. And we think we see in the provision that " the President may commute tho punishment in suoh manner and on such terms as he may deem proper," an intimation of the pru dential considerations, to uy nothing more, whioh are likely to preserve the Confederate authorities from suoh military wrong and injustioe under the laws of nations. When they assumo to deolare the employment of negro troops a violation of the law of nations they arraign not only the Govern ment of the United States, but Powers like Great Britain and France, which aTe supposed to under stand somewhat of the rights and duties pertaining to the international oode. The Bmperor of tho French this moment has Nubian troops in Mexico, waging war by the side of French soldiers. The wisdom of employing negro troops in the present war is one thing; the duty of giving them the protection of the Government after they have been regularly enlisted in the service is quite anothef; and those who, for many reasons, may still enter tain grave doubts on the former point oan have no doubt as to tho latter. Humanity, indeed, muat shudder at the proa peot before us if either party in thia sad war shall have reoourse to the dread sanotions of the retalia tory code for the repression of oonceived offences against the rules of lawful war. If the waters of this Marah are onoe unsealed they may spread into a sea of blood. Hence the caution with which such awful remedies should be threat ened or invoked on the one aide or the other in this fratrioidal contest, which is already unnatural and oruel enough to need no addition to its hor rors. The usages of war cannot, indeed, wholly dis pense with the lex talionh; yet all civilized na tions acknowledge its sanctions to be the sternest weapons in the whole arsenal of warfare; and as such they are never called forth except on com pulsion, and then under tho direst necessity, to guard against the repetition of barbarous outrages whioh oan be prevented in no other way. The denunciation of this punishment, after the man ner of Qen. Hunter, in oommand at Hilton Head, who threatens to exeouto every rebel officer and slaveholder in his possession unless Gon. Jef ferson Davis's order of " outlawry" against those employing negro troops is revoked, cannot be treat ; ed as any thing better than a compound of the horrible and the ludiorous, in which the latter pre dominates, notwithstanding the keenness and the weight of the two-edged sword with whioh the writer plays. Such idle fulminations discredit the military profession, and bring disgrace on the Government, whioh is reduoed to the necessity of disavowing the written orders of men placed in high oommand. It is generally to be observed that the officers most prolific in such evidences of the cacoethes scribendi are men whose names rarely shine in connexion with brilliant deeds or acts of noble daring. And it is in view of this fact, we suppose, that the Boston Daily Advertiser ventures to express its belief "that the Government has at its disposal no lack of officers who could administer tbe Department of the South with at least as much success 8s Gen. Hunter, and who would be able to oompress into their orderB, if not more truth, at least more wiadom." AN IMPARTIAL DRAFT. The New York Evening Post complains that the War Department, in making its preliminary ar rangements for the enrollment of all persons who are liablo to be drafted into the military service, has not acted with the impartiality which the case demands. It says: " The oonacription fulls upon all alike; the principle which underlie! it is that all citizens have an interest in the welfare of the State, and all alike owe it service in arms against the enemy. If all are needed, all must go; when on'y a part are required the selection of thine who shall first take their turn under arms is made by drawing lots; but all ty-e liable to draft. " Now, it seems to us the Administration has forgotten to apply this principle with that impartiality which the ease demands. We bear of provost marshals and enroll ment lists io the Northern aud Border States, but we do not bear of any preparations made to enforce tbe draft in tbe Cotton States. Why are not-provost inarshsls appointed for them ? Why 1 la it not understood that th#ir inhabi tant* are subject to tbe same laws a* those of other Statesf How is it tbat in Western Virginia a draft is likely to be ordered for tbe Union army, hut in Eastern Virginia none T " The theory of the Administration is Ibat no State can secede from tbe Union, and tbat no State sacrifices it* rights by a rebellion among its inhabitants; but, if it claims its rights, it must also be held to its proper duties. Fur that reason we expeet the enrollment and the draft to be applied alike to all tbe states. " If it be said that a part of tbe people of the rebel States is already in arms, but against the Union, we reply tbat another part of them is not. It may be tbnt the white men have been forced into Davis's armies; but the black men Davia keepaat bome to cultivate tbe land and to raise food lor bis troops. In lucb a matter tbe Government can tiike no account of color or social position. All tbat it can ask is whether a man be able bodied and fitted for the duties required of the aoldiers. If he is, be is a proper person to be called into saraice. Tbe law does not impose a greater burden upon one State than upon another, or upon one clam than upon another. The draft, therefore, must be applied to all, but must take those it finds?and it happena, fortunately, in tbe Southern Statea that tho?o who remain at home belong to a cUas which ia loyal to the Union and oppoaed to the rebellion. Besides, the alave claas is one which is to be peculiarly benefited by the re sults of tbe war, and ought, 011 tbat acoount, to be required to contribute to its prosecution and success." It is quite true, we believe, that no provost mar shals have been appointed throughout the Cotton States, or even throughout Virginia, North Caro lina, or Tennessee. And if surprised at this faot, the Post, we are sure, will be more surprised when it learns that there are no applicants for these im portant and lucrative offices in the gift of the Govern ment. We ought to have a provost marshal residing at the oapitals of South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, and other Southern States, with their appropriate subordinates, whose duty it should be to enroll all the loyal blacks preparatory to the enforcement of the draft at the South as well ait at the North. As our oontemporary says, the Government in such a matter can take no account of color or social posi tion. The draft should be equal and impartial. But whether it be that the views of the Post on this point are singular, or that there is a sudden aed alarming dearth of patriots at the North who are willing to hold offioo under the Administration where there is the promise of doing, our contcm pory thinks, so much good, certain it is that Mr. Stanton should not be very severely criticised be cause he has not yet appointed provost marshals for all the Cotton States. If the Pott has any can didates whom it can recommend for these offices we venture to express the opinion that their olaims will be treated with due consideration by the Ad ministration, which, we take it, is as anxious as our oontemporary can be to make the draft fall on all alike. As that ardent friend of the Govern ment, Mr. Wendell Phillips, has recently said that he will never rest satisfied until he sees five hun dred thousand negro soldiers enlisted in the ser vioo of the Union, perhaps he could be induced to accept an appointmont for South Carolina or Ala bama. NOMINATION FOR CONGRESS. Bai.timohk, J it nr. G.?The Union Convention to night nominated Hon. Henry Winter Davis for Representative in Congies* from tbe Third Congressional District. He was afterward serenaded, and made a speech, in which he said he should if elected support the entire policy of the Administration. There ahonld, be said, be no aide issues. It was time for Maryland to speak oat boldly. He sup ported emancipation, and was for the vigorous prosecution of the war and conquering a peaee. AN UNGENEROUS ATTACK. The New York Tribune, in notioing a late de spatch to that city from Washington stating that the President, in speaking of the military opera tions on the Mississippi, had said " he expected the best results, but was nrepared for the worst," expresses the Lope that, it the worst comes, " he will be prepared to satisfy the oountry that evary thing that could have been done to avert it has been done." Our New York contemporary notes this state ment, and refers to it in advanoe of the result at Yicksburg, and in these terms, " in order that the Government may be apprized that this country, if called upon to bear the reverse that is thus ap parently half foreshadowed, will require much in formation that it does not now possess to eonvinoe it that the disaster oould not have been avoided." The Tribune, after recalling that the first battle of Hull Iiun was lost and the rebellion set firmly upon its legs, " while there were Union soldiers enough to crush the traitors twice over reposing idly on their arms within hearing of the din of that battle," prooeeds to upbraid the President as follows: " We shall believe, bo long an we can, that the Govern ment will m t again be chargeable with such fatal mimnan Bgement. But it is well that it should bear in mind that there is a limit to all human endurance, even when the suffering is inflicted by one's moat trusted friends. If Qrant and his brave army shall be left to be overwhelmed, aud the nation be again agonized with the spectacle of hecatombs of its children slain to no purpose, the loyal millions will not quail nor abate one jot of their spirit even in the presence of so great a calamity; but they may feel that it wou d be no longer a duty to tolerate the men in whom they had confided, and u>ho only day after day hare givtn proof upon proof that they cm neither comprehend nor grapple successfully with the magnitude und the demands of the task bejore them. " We feel it our duty to tell the President these things. The people believe In the perpetuity of the Republic, but they cannot believe in etern I weakness. They believe in the ultimate tiiumph of the national cause, but iliey cannot forever endure a chronic apathy and in-providence that no experience, however sharp, and no adversity, however ap palling, can stimulate or instruct. They demand at least the same foresight and vigor in promoting their cause that its enemies exhibit in assailing it. The time is past for quieting the country under luexcusnble disaster with as surance* that tedious and long wars and incompetency in waging them are as did as the world itself. W th unlimit ed mean*, and with powers, civil and military, that are literally despotic, placed in the hand* of th? President, there ought at tbi? day to be no failures We trust that the issue at Vicksburg will prove that there will be none, and that there is an eod of tbe system or no system which, if longer continued, must waste away and consume, not the enemies of the Republic, but tbe Republic itself." As the Tribune is pre-eminently a "loyal pa per" we suppose it is entirely right and proper for it to Bay to the President what it would be highly treasonable for any body else to say. Cer tain it is that we have never found ooeasion to hold this tone of mingled contempt and menace towards the constituted authorities while exercis ing our right to animadvert on their conceived shortcomings. And we think there are many con siderations which should impose on the Tribune a peculiar modesty in any arraignment of the Presi dent and his advisers before the American people as men " who, day after day, have only given proof upon proof that tbey can neither comprehend nor grapple successfully with the magnitude and the demands of the task before them." Not to say that the Tribune, by its wide and potential influence, contributed largely to the ele vation of these men to the power which it now says they have proved themselves incompetent to wield, we beg to submit to the candid considera tion of our contemporary that more than any other journal in the country it has aided to " press" upon the President the adoption of the peculiar policy and the peculiar measures which constitute the most hopeless features of our present political and mili tary condition. Whatever of obloquy or criticism the 1'resident may enoounter from other quarters he should be sacred from the Tribune's assaults It will be remembered by our readers that in his fmt interview had with the Representatives and Senators from tho Border Slaveholding States, in order to explain to them the design of his policy of compensated emancipation, Mr. Lincoln stated, | in reply to a suggestion made by Mr. Noell, of Missouri, respecting the position of our New York contemporary on this question, that " he must not be expected to quarrel with the New York Tribune before the right time came ; he hoped never to have to do it, and be would not antioipato events." And in response to an inquiry made by Mr. Cris field, of Maryland, the President, after again in timating as he had before done, that a " quarrel " with the "Greeley faction" was impending, said " he did not wish to encounter it before the proper time, nor at all if it could be avoided." Thus far the President has "avoided" this "quarrel" by doing voluntarily or under "pres sure" pretty much every thing that th? Tribune has desired ; and, under such oiroutustances, we again submit that he has a right to look for a great er degree of forbearance, not to say justioe, at the hands of its eonduotor. If the latter will but re cur to the " prayer" which he addressed to the Prcnident in the name of " twenty millions" some time in the month of August la?t, (and to which the President replied through our oolumns,) he will find that Mr. Lincoln has subsequently far exoeeded the desires whose gratification Mr. Oree* ley then thought would ensure the speedy salvation of the Republic beyond a peradventure, as tbey would certainly complete the happiness of his im portunate petitioner. It now turns out that Mr. Groolcy was mistaken in both of these respcots, for noither is he happy nor is tho oountry saved. On the contrary, ho is, if possible, more miserable than ever, sn woll he may bo, if, a* he says, tho Repub lio is "wasting away" under the "system or no system" which obtains in the oonduot of tho war. We do not question the sincerity of the apprehensions expressed, for they are shared by all thoughtful and patriotic citizens, but having dono so much to enhance the magnitude and enlarge the demands of the task set before the President, the Tribune should not be swift to re proach him with " ohronie apathy and improvi dence" because he staggers under the mountain of difficulties which it has helped to pile on his back. BATTLE AT PORT HUDSON. By the arrival at New Yoik of tbe steamer Morning Star we have advices from New Orleans to the2*Jth ultimo, being tbe name date an already received, but containing some highly important intelligence that failed to reach New Orleai.it in season for tbe last steamer. Tbe attack upon Port Hudsou, which seemed imminent at the close of our last accounts, took place on tbe 27th of May, after a continuoua bombardment by Com. Farra gut's fleet, from the previous Wednesday. Tbe poaitioo had beenclos-ly invested ; our right resting on Tbompaon'a bayou, above the torts, and our left on Springfield landing, below them. The extreme right was commanded by Gen. Weitzel, tbe right centre by Qen. Grover, tbe left centre by Qen Augur, and the extreme left by Gen. J. W. Sher man?tbe artillery being under Geu. Arnold. Previous reeounoiaaances revealed that tbe defences on the laud aide were very strong, consisting of several lines of entrench ments and rifle pit**, with abattis of heavy trees felled in every direction. Tbe plans of Gen. Hanks having been perfected, a general attack by laud and water was ordered for Wed nesday, aud began about seven o'clock, almost simultane ously aioDg the eutire line, the aim being to capture the heavy batteries, respectively,on the enemy's left and right. Tbe first tack was committed to Gen. Weitzel, and after a desperate fight, in which his troops suffered severely, was crowned with partial success by the capture of the ' celebrated six-gun battery commanding the river aud which proved so destructive to the frigate Mississippi on tbe night when she was destroyed. This is considered a most important point gained, as it turns the left of the euemy aiid enabled our troops to ute it with advantage against the other fortifications, a* was done with great success. Tbe attack upon tbe enemy's right by Gen. Sherman wag equally brilliant but lea* successful. With desperate valor two of our regiment# carried tbe enemy's works at the point of tbe bayonet, under a uiurderoua fire of shot, shell, grape,'canister, and musketry, but were at length com pelled to give way before tbe overwhelming numbers that were massed against them. Considerable ground was gamed and held, howfever, though tbe principal object of the attack, that of getting inside the main works and cap turing tbe batteries on the enemy's right, was not accom plished. In this attark Gen. Sherman fell severely wound ed in the leg and was taken to New Orleans the next day. 1 here was also a heavy lost of other officers, among them being Gen. Neal Dow wounded, and Cols. Clarke and Cowles killed. All tfce regiments suffered severely, the Sixth Michigan and One Hundred aud Twenty-eighth New York losing about half their effective men, and the 8econd Louisiana Native Guards, who led the advance with con spicuous bravery, came out with a loss of over six hun dred men and nearly all their officers. Meanwhile the attack on the centre had been made by Gens. Augur and Grover. It was conducted with tbe most impetuous valor and met by tbe most desperate resistance The enemy were driven font by foot out of the rifle pits and entrenchments behiud their main works, and our troops held every inch of ground that they bad gained. There is somt discrepancy in the accounts as to tbe con tinuance of the action : one version stating positively that at five o'clock in the afternoon a general order was dis patched along the whole line to retreat to the original po sition occupied at the commencement of the action. Another account asserts with equal positiveness that at sever, o'clock in the evening the battle was raging along the entire line with great fury; and that at four o'clock of the following day despatches had been received at New Orleans that our position was still improving, with every prospect of success. The details of the second day's fight (on Thursday, the '28th) had not been received, but it was believed to have been at severe as that of tbe day before. The impression prevailed in New Orleans that tbe news was kept back till tbe field wa* finally lost or won; but a? Gen. Banks had been reinforced so as to cover all hit losses and was believed to have sufficient force to complete the reduc tion of the position, and as he is said to have expressed the determination to carry it by storm even if be should lose ten thousind men in doing so, it la confidently expected that his efforts will be crowned with success, and that the next despatches will convey tbe important tidings of the capture of Poit Hudson and all its defenders. Our loss in the battle of Wednecday is set down at be tween two and three thousind, and tbat of the enemy it also said to have been frightful, but less in proportion than our own, as they were in a great degree covered by their foitifications. The foregoing is condensed from New Orleans letters by the Newark Daily Advertiser. We add an extract of a letter which speaks more particularly of the operations of Admiral Farragut's fleet: " It must not be supposed that while the army was do ing all this desperate fishting on shore the navy was idle ? on the contrary, the gallant Admiral was at work with ibe entire squadron both above and below. The ' bummers' moved their position much nearer the works and kept up a continuous fire of thirteen-incb shell. Tbe Hartford and Albatross engaged the upper batteriei. and wh-a Oener-1 Weittel captured the tix-gun battery before referred to, they mnvd further down and supported him by attacking the next below; Admiral Farragut, in the MonongaheU, followed by the Richmond, Genesee, and Ks.ex, engaged the lower works, aud in a most effective manner.' " The fire of the enemy upon tbe ships was compara tively light ; I hey directed it principally at the Monongahe la, but tailed to bit her 1 be Kichmond was equally for tunate, and there was not a casualty to record in the fleet up to six o'clock last evening. The fleet was engaged in the morning and agnin in the afternoon, and succeeded in dismounting five of the enemy's heaviest guus. Tne firing was. for accuracy, never excelled. Admiral Farragut with his squsdion will render Gen. Ranks important assistance in tbe wink yet to he done; be will continue to rain shot and shell upon the enemy in such a manner as must dis tract hm in a great measure from tbe land attack, and compel hiui to abandon one line or the other. They can not stand for many hours the assault they are now sub jected to; it is more than human natnre can endure, this constant wear and tear of both body and mind." OFFICIAL REPORT OF GEN HANKS. Headquarters Department or tub qui.r, Amrinnlh Army Corps, btforr Port Hudson, May 30, 1863. Major General HallbcK, General-in-Chief, Washington: General: Leaving Semmesport, on the Atchafalaya, where my command was at the date of my last despatch, I lan.ied at Hayou Sara at two o'clock on the morning of the'JIit. A portion of the infantry were transported in steamers, and the residue of the infantry, artillery, cav alry, and wagon train moved down on the west bank of the river, and from this to Bayou Sara. On the 23d a junction was tffected with the advanre of Major General Augur and Brigadier General Sherman, our line occupying the Bayou Sara road at a distance of live miles from Port Hudson. Major Oeneral Augur bad an encounter with a portion of the enemy on the Bayou Mara road. In the direction of Baton Kouge, which resulted in the repulse of the enemy with heavy luss. On the 'J.ith the enemy wa? compelled to abandon his first line of works. General Weitxel's brigade, which had covered our rear in th* march from Alexandria, joined us on tlieljtith, and on the morning of the 27th a general as sanlt was made upon the fortifications. The artillery open ed fire between five anil six o'olock, which was continued with animation during the day. At t n "'clock Weittel's brigade, with tbe division of Gen. Grover, reduced to about two brigades, and the divi sion of Geo. Emory, temporarily reduced by detachments to about a brigade, under command of Col. Paine, with two regiments of colored troops, made an assault upon the right of the enemy's works, crossing Handy creek, and driving them through the woods into his fortifications. The fight lasted on this line until four o'clock, and waa very severely contested. On the left the infantry did not come up until later in tbe day ; but at two o'clock an assault wan opened ou the work* ou the centre and left of ceutre by the divisions un der Major Geu. Augur aud Brig. Gen. Sherman. The eue u>y wns driven iuto bis worka, aud our troops moved up to tbe fortification*, holding the opposite aide* of the para pet with the enemy. Oq the right our troopa atill hold this position. Ou the ielt, afier dark, the main body being exposed to a flank tire, withdrew to a belt of woods, the skirmishers remaining close upon the fortifications. In tbe assault of tbe 27th, the behavior of tbe officera and men was most gillaut, and left notbiug to be desired. Our limited acquaintance witb the ground, aud the charac ter of tbe works, which were almost bidden from our ob servation until the moment of approach, alone prevented the capture of the post. Ou the extreme right of our liue I posted the first and third regiments of negro troops. Toe first regiment 01 Louisiana Engineers, composed exclu-ively of colored men, exoepting tbe officers, was also engaged in the'operationx of the day. Tbe position occupied by these troops was one of importance, and called (or the utmost steadiness and bravery in those to whom it was confided It gives me pleasure to report that tbey answered every expectation, in many respects their couduct was heroic. No troopa could be more determined or more daring. They made during the day three charges upon tbe batteries of the en emy, suti'eiing very heavy losses, aud holding their position at uightfall with the otber troops on the right of our line. | The highest commendation is bestowed upon tbem by all the officers in command ou tbe right. Whatever doubt may have existed heretofore as to the efficieucy of organi zations of this character, the history of this day proves conclusively to those who were in condition to observe (he couduct of theae regiments that the Government will find in this class of troops effective supporters aud defenders The revere test to which they were subjected, and the de termined manner in which tbey encountered tjie enemy, leaves upon my mind no doubt of their ultimate success. They require only good officers, commands of limited uum bers, and careful discipline, to make them excellent sol diers. Our losses from the 23d to this date, in killed, wounded, and missing, are nearly one thousand, including, I deeply regret to say, some of the ablest officers of the corps. I am unable as yet to repeat tbem in detail. I bave the honor to be, with much respect, your obe dient servant, N. P. BANK8, Major Geberal Commanding. SHIP-CANAL CONVENTION. Chicago, Juke 3,18G3. To the Edilors of the National Intelligencer. This city of the Lakes yesterday and to-day, at the open ing of the Ship-Canal Convention, presented a scene of which every loyal American might justly feel proud, be be a citi zen of the Atlantic State*, of the great Valley of the Mis sissippi, or of the noble St. Lawrence valley, the waters of which here almost commingle, and no doubt are destined to be ueddied, and to fl jw in unison from the cold waters of the Qulf of St. Lawrence to the warm waters of the Qulf of Mexico, carrying on their tide the'rich products ol toe tropics, the cere-ils of the temperate zone, and the tim ber and other valuable commodities of the coMer region of the American continent. Chicago, when fairly understood, in a commercial, cli matic, and favored point of view, as regards water and laud communication, has probably no equal on the face of the glube. Standing near the southern border of one of the five great Lakes of America, affording four or five thou sand miles of inland ship navigation, and, by means of the Erie canal of New York, favored by no outport on the At lantic ocean, it only now wants a Ship Canal to the Mis sissippi river to give it au outport on the Qulf of Mexico. As to railroad facilities, no adequate idea can be con veyed. The trow hars already extend to Montreal, Quebec, and Portland on the northeast; to Boston,New York, Phil adelphia, &.c. on the east; to Charleston and Savannah ou the southeast, and to Mobile and New Orleans on the boutb?being, ere long, no doubt destined to have railroad facilities with other cities to the gold regions and the Pa cific ocean on the west; while northward a railroad line is fin^hed to Qreen B*y, Wisconsin, and auother line nearly completed to St Paul, Minnesota Look at a map of the United States and Canada, and see ber favored po?iiion near the centre of the temperate cone ; whle east and west she lies centrally between the At lantic and eastern si >pe of the Rocky Mountain*. By nature she claims pre-eminence as a great lulnud c ty. Give her the boon she asks at this time, and the whule Republic will bn b-ne fited, inasmuch as it Mi l afford facilities to the far West and the eastern portions of our wide-exteuded country. Like the Erie canal, it will even tend to lessen the price of provisions in foreigu markets, and at the same time strengthen and enricb our own people, North and South, notwithstanding the latter are now in opeu rebellion. A late writer remarks, " Chicago is m <st emphatically the city of the West; for when any town can ju?tly claim to be the greatest market for gram, beef, pork, and lumber iu the world, then we may confidently believe thit all else that enters into the composition of a great city will gather there to build up, if not the greatest, one of the most im portant cities ol the continent." You will see the interesting proceedings of the Ship Canal Convention in the public prints. The meeting is large aud most respectably attended, while good feeling and harmouy sretn to prevail. Yours, respectfully, J. Distijrnei.l. East TENNESSEE. Qov. Andrew Johnson arrived at Nashville on bis return from Washington on the 30th of May. He was met at the depot by a military escort, and a large concourse of soldiers and cit zous welcomed him at his residence on Capitol Hill. 'Gov. Jobnsou briefly addressed theui, ex pressing his belief that the day was not far distant when Tennessee would be redeemed from rebel .thraldom, and declaring that there was but one path to peace by submis sion to the laws, and not by armistice or compromise. The Nashville Union states that Gov. Johnson has been closely engaged at Washington for some weeks past with the War Department in the promotion of plans which he believed would be for the interest of the national cause, and urgent business connected with the equipment of tn ops for East Tennessee detained bim some time at Louisville. His scheme, it is also stated, his met a warm reception at the North, snd the Governors of several States, New York in cluded, have offered regiments and brigades to raise the twenty five thousand soldiers desired, looking specially to the deliverance of East Tennessee. FRENCH REINFORCEMENTS FOR MEXICO. The latest accounts from Cherbourg state that large re inforcements are leaving that port for the French army in Mexico. The transport frigate Entreprenante was under orders to sail f.>r Vera Cruz on the 23d ultimo, with fifteen officers and four hundred and five rank and file, together with several naval officers and a large quautity of ammu nition. Qen. Courtois Koussel d'Hurbal, of the artillery, is to go to Mexico to replace the late Gen. Veruhet de Lsumiere, killed in the trenches before PueWfi. The sec ond battery of the third regiment <>f artillery, forming part of the garri?on of Viucennes, left Pa is on the 17th ultimo by railway for Cherbourg, to be embarked there on the first i pporfunity for Mexico. Adiuirnl Footk, who has been ordered to relieve Admi ral Dt'l'ONT from the command of the Houth Atlantic Blockading Squadron, is now at his home in New Haven, (Conn.) but ia expected to sail from New York in a day or two to assume the command which has been aasigned to bim. The livening Post states that Admiral Dupont pre ferred a request s<>me time ago to be assigned to some other command, and the present action of the Government is simply in compliance with this request. Admiral Du pont ha* been in uninterrupted service on the Atlantic coast for nearly two years, and is greatly in heed of a brief re*t fri in labors which have proved moat exhausting. ACCIDENT TO A BANKER. Philadelphia, Ji'ne 6?Franc s M. Drexel, senior partner of the firm of Drexel &. Co., bankers, was injured i this afternoon by jumping from the Reading care. His in juries are thought to be fatal, as be was caught under the wheels and had both leg? crushed severely ; oue wastaken entirely off. His extreme age precludes the hope of his recovery. INCIDENTS AT VICKSBURG. Letter* to the Western paper* froui Vicksbarg relate many perilous incidents in the aasaults upon the enemy's *imK- at thai pUiw. One of Uieui it)i: " Ou the right Gen. Sbermtu ha* push d Steele's di vision qiarely to the font ?f the parapet. Our men lie in ditches on the slope of the parapet ou tin aide of one of 'ie principal forU. Unable to lake it by alarm, they are etermiued not to retire. The Federal and rebel aoldiera ire net twenty tive fen apart Both are powerless to flict much harm. E?oh watchea the other, and a dozen iu?ke'H are tired whenever a soldier expose* himself bove the wrki ? u either sile. Nenly the anme condi mn of thi'ifc* exists in McPheraou'a front. Hia sharp ?mooters prevent the working of the enemy's pieces in one ?r two lorta. Fancy yourself lying thua ou the alope of a pirapet, cliuging by your handa and knees, ouly twenty five feet from a fellow with aharp eyea and a true aim, who would think it sport to knock you over, aud you have a good idea of the perils of the soldier's life !" A letter to the Chioago Journal, dated " Rear of Vicks burg, May 2d," says 01 the second assault on the rebel works on the 22i ultimo: "Storming parlies of volunteer', and forlorn hopes, were advauced under cover ol field batteries and sharp shooters, and supported by brigades The men moved bravely aud well into the field aud up to the works, but in vain. We could not take the works The men dug steps iu the earthworks with tbeir ba>onets, and placed their colors on the rebel parapets, whence neither party could remove them, every man who thowed himself tailing from the ahot of a rifleman. "Col. Humphrey*, of the Ninety-fifch Illinois, was in Gen. Ransom's brigade. Iu the second assault his reai ment was heritatiug: Gen. Rausom called to lum to move forward. Dropping his sword iu a tulute to the General, .he ordered, 'Forward Ninety-fifth,'aud fell dead. The color-bearer was ahot, and fell at the same instant. The regiment wavered. Gen. Ransom seized the colors aud advanced in front of the line; three line officers left their places, came to the General and took the colors. The line advanced and those colors were planted on the rebel parapet. '* During the same day the colots of the Ninth Iowa were planted ou a rebel parapet, the color-gu<rd jigging steps with tbeir bayonets. The colors remained iu that position seven hours. Every man of the Ninth that at tempted to get uear them was shot by the rebels. Every rebel that essayed to touch them was winged by oue of our sharp-shooters. The Ninth brought away the flagstaff aud about two thirds of the colors; the rebels have, per haps, one-third. When colors are advanced to such a po sition that every band that essays to feel the staff is winged, you can well understand that there is sharp shooting." The tame correspondent gives the following sutnmaiy of the army's exploits and of the strength of the rebtl fortifications: "This is the total of our arm>'s work : In sixteen days it has marched one hundred and sixty miles, lought five battles, taken the capital of Mississippi, destroyed all communication with the rebel army nt 1 ullihoma, cap tured seven thousand prisoners, ninety-two pieces of artil lery, eight thousand stand of small arms, seven miles t-f heavy fortifications on the rebel ri?bt, completely invested the city in the rear, and opeued for us a n- w and perfect line of supplies. During thece sixteen days the army bad but four days' ratious from the depot of supplies. "Vwksburg is defended in the rear by works fifteen feet iu height, with ditches ten feet deep?trie woiks stand ing on steep hillsides, every approach protected by rifle pita and covered by artillery. It cannot be taken by as sault, but will be taken. It ia a doomed city. This fhorn ing a mine unleriineof the forts iu front of Sherman's corps waa blown up, and the site is now in our possession. Our Ins*, mi far. is ab.iiit five thousaud killed aud wound ed, perhaps leu." Near Vicksburg, May 30, 1863. A Sabbath-like stillneaa has pervaded the camp moat of the time for several di>ys. On one or two occ&aiona vigor ous cannonading has been kept up for five or teu minutes, at points where real or fancied movements of the enemy's forces were being made ; then all would subside again. Even the sharpshooters would lie idle. Spades are once more trumps. We are erecting earth-works to protect our men, aud mining to blow the lace out of oue or two prominent forts that are nearly unapproachable otherwise. I'be idea of carrying the place by storm seems to be aban doned, and the safer aud surer plan of starving Gen. Pern berton into submission now finds lavur every where. This morning the heaviest cannonading of the siege was kept up without intermission nearly three hours. New batcries have been placed in po.-ition, aud one hundred and fifty guns were playing ou the city at daylight. The tiring was rapid beyond belief, a id reports along the whole line averaged one per second for minutes together Toe roar of heavy siege-gnus was awful, and the earth waa rhakeu by the concuaaion. At present, 6 A. M., there ia a lull. The latest official advices from Vicksburg are to the evening of Weduesday, the 3d lustaut, at whigh time the siege continued. Walnut Hills, June 2, 1863. Blair's expedition has returned w.thout the loss of a tnau Fifty-six miles of country, from the Big Black to the Yiizoo, was scoured by our troops. Several bridges, grist mills, aud cotton gins used to grind corn were de stroyed ; alto a large quantity of cott >n marked C. S. A. The country towards Yazoo City is teemiug with ag ricultural riches; cattle, sheep, aud hogs abound. Flour ishing cropa of corn, oats, wheat, and rye are seen on every aide Hundreds of negroes stampeded at the approach of our troops, and followed them into the lines. Joe Johnston has not yet been heard from definitely. It is supposed be cannot raise a sufficient force to attack Graut. The annexed private letters from officers of Com. Por ter's fleet are published : In Front of Vickbburg, Jure 1, 1863. I was io a rifle-pit yeaterday, twenty yards from the enemy's lines, O'l Sherman's front. The poor devils have had all their gun* silenced, and can't fire a sbot They throw hand grenade* 011 our men who are working away uiideineath their forts, and who throw them back attain. You may talk of ?<evaitopol and Malahofl', hut it waa baby w rk to this Nothing ever yet equalled the work <>f our a ddiera in getting up to lhe<e work*. You would have to aee it to believe it. All the Richmond* would be nothing to th? oiif-twentieth of the nine inilea of work* these devil* have thrown up in front, and the obatructiona they htive l?*ft bell nd our nrtuy for six wile a. If we can ever get a reporter to tell the truth, he will write a tale of more intereat than any that baa be?n published for a century. Now and then we aink a veaa?M, or get one sunk, but we will pump the water out of tbem aa aonn as the town falla, which will certainly be in ten days. Near Vicksburg, Ji-ne 1, 1863. There is nothing new to communicate, except the re turn of a second expedition up thx Yazoo. They returned perfectly successful, having deatroyed eight transport* and a largo amount of cotton and other valuablea, and captured aome priamera and provisions. The condition and posi tion of our army in the rear ol Vicksburg i? still good,and Hen. Grant is confident of success. I never aaw auch a lin* of defences aa aro in front of Gen. Sbermau'a lines. At aome places our parallela are within fifty yards of the e it iny'a work*, and our men lie down directly under the guna of the rebels. If an assault is made with ten thou sand men they cannot help taking the city. The enemy cannot have over nine thousand in their works, and Grant says he can whip any reinfoicements they can bring up. Our mortar* are still b mbarding Vickshurg, and doing a great deal of good. We have killed a great number of b ef cattle and done a great deal of damage. Our guo b"a'B below come up every night ami fte slowly during the uight An officer has just come up from Bank*, and reports h.111 in the raiue position that we are here. He hta closely uiveated Port Hilda n, and says he is certain of "going in." lbey are, however, strougly fortified, and may hold out there aome time. REBEL NEWS FROM SOtTTH CAROLINA. Charleston, Jine 4.?An official deapatch from General W. 8. Walker, at Pocotaligo, report* that the enemy fired the town of Bluffiou to-day. Our foreea en gaged them aud prevented a further advance. A later despatch from Lieut. Col. Johusou to Gen. Walker saya: "Weaie now in BlufTton, which place is in flames. The enemy have retired. No one hurt on our side. In the raid 011 the Combahee the enemy carried away about trn th< usand negroe*, and destroyed nearly a million dol lars' worth of property " Immigration.?The immigration to New York con tinues a* lar^e aa ever The number of arrivala laat week was 5,150, which makes the grand t*>tal aince January \ 140,082, againat 20.6H8 in the aame perii>d of laat year.