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The Local news. (Alexandria, Va.) 1861-1862, February 10, 1862, Image 1

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§ Arrest or a Minister while at Prayer
a Church—Great Excitement —Yes-
rday the services at St. Paul's (Episcopal
Church were conducted by tbe Rev. K. J
Stewart, who, in conjunction with Rev. G. A.
Smith, has been officiating for some weeks to
the congregation worshipping there. Tbe
congregation was yesterday composed for
tbe most part of ladies and children
there being but, comparatively, few mules
p-esent. One of the pews near the chan
eel was occupied by the military, and
some soldiers were scattered about in other
parts of the church. As the minister was
commencing the Litany, some one from the
pew filled by the military, demanded that
■M;he prayer for the President of the United
States should be read"—and the demand
was repeated by an officer r-ear him,
dressed in uniform. The minister not heed
ing the interrupt! n, was proceeding with
the Litany, when a sergeant was order
el to arrest him. This caused, immediately,
great excitement, and expressions of indig
nation from the congregation. The military
came up to the chancel, and various citizens
also gathered around. The prayer book was
taken from Mr. Stewart's hand, he was seized
and conducted out of the church, follow
ed by bis little daughter who clung to her
father, and was held by one of the sol li. rr«.
The alarm of the females, the cries of th •
children, the ru=b of .the people, and tbe
fear of some farther violence, which oc
casioned mmc blows to be passed between
the civilians aid the soldiers, all occa
sioned a scene perhaps never before wit
nessed in a Church on this side of the Atlan
tic. And the excitement was increased by
the entrance into (he building of a number
of soldiers, from the adjoining barracks, with
sabre and revolvers in their hands, some of
them uttering violent imprecations. By
thia time, however, Mr. Stewart bad been car
ried out of thechurch, protesting against the
violence offered him, and the congregation
dispersing and following the crowd, the
church was closed, and quietness si On pre
vailed. Mr. Stewart in his clerical robes, was
nrst taken through, the.streeis, to the quar
ters of Col. Farut-worth of the Bth Illinois
cavalry, on Washingtys stieat. Gen. Mont
gomery, the U. S. Military Governor of Al
exandria, who was attending service in
Christ Chunh, was immediately sent for,
called out, and informed of the affair, lie
stated that he had giveu no orders for the
arrest, and knew nothing of 6uch a proceed
irg, aud, if it had been done, without or
.ders from Washington, it was a matter
which he condemned. The declarations of
Gen. Montgomery, which were, indeed, ex
pected from him, by most citizens of all par
ties calmed the excitement. It is understood
that the particulars of the affair were imme
diately telegraphed to the proper authorities
in Washington, and an answer returned dis
avowing the issue of any authority for the
arrest, and authorising the release of Mr.
Stewart. Oen. Montgomery then, in a gen
tlemanly, and humane manner, released Mr-
Stewart, who returned to his latnily and
frieuds. It is said that the particulars of
this affair will be reported to Geu. Montgo
mery for further action, and that the mat
ter will be laid before the authorities in
Arrests.—Mr. Ilico, a Japanese, who has
aie to this country for the purpose of es
tablishing commercial connexions with some
of the business firms in the Northern cities,
having au acquaintance in this city, cume
here a short time since ou a visit. It ap
pears that he has bocn mistaken for a Louis
aua Creole, and his movements olosply
watched. Yesterday, Mr. 11., in company
with Capt. Win. Boothe, called at the resi
dence of Mr. George Bryan, where they had
been but a few moments, when a squad of
soldiers entered the house and arrested the
three gentlemen, who were taken before the
Provost Maish.il, who after hearing the ex
planation, acquitted Meters. Bryan and
Boothe, and release J Mr. Hieo, that gentle
man giving bond for his re-appearance.
At San Francisco, there is g alight revival
Contrabands coming in the Federal lines I
report that beyond Fairfax Cmrt House, and
towai-dn Centreville, the roads had been
abattised so as tj impede the advance of tbe
Federal forces. Centreville, as a geoeral
thing, hai been deserted by the inhabitant*.
Many of the homes had bien turned into
barracks and officers' quarters. Gou. Smith
had his quarters bey md the town, in a farm
home. The troops were in water quarters,
the camps being scattered from Centreville
I to Manassas.
A thoroughly posted person states that
only four hundred negroes are at Fortress
Monroe, while four times that number are
hanging about the Federal lines, and fear to
go within them, lest they should be put to
hard work, or be carried off. The general
testimony of persons from the North is that
no considerable number of fugitive slaves
havejled thither since the commencement
of the war.
The solution of the dispatch received from
the Confederate Gen. Johnson, is still wrap
ped in mystery. Some say it is one thing,
and some that it is auother. But tbe truth
is. none but those high in authority know
any thing of its contents.
j Schooner Addie E. Barnes, which arrived
at New York on Saturday, reports that on
\ the second inst., in lat. 32 34, long. 72 45,
; heard heavy firing to the westward. There
| were three vessels in sight at the time.
Letters from Hayti state that Geffrard will
send a white minister to Washington if
Hay ti is recognized, as no colored man of
any standing would submit to the inferior
social position he would, necessarily occupy.
The proprietors of the Coboes Hotel, Co
hoes, N. V., are surprised at an event which
took place there recently. A young lady
arrived from Albany, took a room passed
the night ana went away in the morning,
leaving behind her a carefully wrapped par-
El which proved to be a live baby. The
ndlord doesn't know what to do with it
»r where to find its mamma.
A lecture was delivered in' Washington,
Friday night, on "the difference between
working and shirking." There is really a
very material difference—but some people
in the world make one pa«s for the other.
Capt. Wm. Chase, a retired sea captain
was robbed on Wednesday night in B-isiou
of $10,000 worth of notes and city stocks.
The white population of Charleston, S. C,
is about 27,000. 1
The Confederate estimate of the value o
the property at the Navy Yard in Norfolk
including land, buildings, vessels, machine
ry, &c, is $4,810,056 68.
; A man was captured on Wednesday by a
| company from one of the New York reg"
' ments in Gen. McDowell's Division, in the
'■■ hollow of an old tree, where he had been
! secreted for several days. He was fully sup.
! plied with provisions. He refused to givt
his name, or what his business was. He
: was sent to headquarters.
| Think of 215 men and boys immured i
j a coal-pit—buried alive ! That was the las
i accident in the mining districts of Euglam
end after a week's labor not one of thenum
i ber was rescued. The deadly gas and th
falling earth almost prevented the work o
Tho question in regard to a man's politi
I cal position used to be, "Is he sound on the
'goose?" Now, Prentice says, it is, "Is he
sound on the eagle?"
They say Barnum will find in Commodore
! Xutt as profitable a kernel as Tom Thumb
The National Intelligencer treats upon the
expulsion of Senator Bright:, and expresses
the opinion that his ease was d cidod by tho
S.mate with an ex<;rc:m ; ty of rigor not fasti
fid by the historical circumstances under
which the letter that forms lha ground of the
indictment a*a'n« him was writteh.
Francis Petit, tried iv Washington,- for
shooting a man some months ago, -lias been
4. number of robberies, have lately been
oommitted in Nanjemoy district, Charles
In the 11. ft Senate last Friday, the bill
from the House appropriating $10,000,000,
to build twenty iron-clad gunboats was pass
ed, as was a resolution of thanks to Com.
Dupont and those under him, for their suc
cess at Port Royal, and a joint resolution) to
pay the awards of the military commission
for expenditures in the department of the
West. The bill from the House making
.sundryjcivil appropriations for 1863, and ad
ditional appropriations for 1862, was passed
with amendments.
The Nashville Courier of the 3d contains
the following:—" By order of the Provision,
al Government of Kentucky, the name of
j Wolfe county has been changed to Z dlioffer
! county."
| The fisat of telegraphing direct from Bos
: ton to Salt Like City was performed for the
.first time on Saturday. The first dispatch
from Salt Like City was dated at 8:35, and
the Biston tinm was 10:30, sh iwing a differ
ence of nearly two hours between the time
lof the two places.
The rumor of a speedy intervention of
France in American affairs, iv contradicted
in official circles in Washington.
A dispatch from San Francisco announces
that $1,400,000 in treasure is on the way to
New York in the Panama steamer.
A substantial wire bridge has been con
structed over the Gauley River, in place
the structure which Gov. Wise burned.
In the Senate of the U. S. the Committee
on Elections has reported favorably in the
j case of Mr. Stark, the Senator elect from
Oregon. The report was ordeted to lie over.
Ovring to illness in the family, the usual
receptioa at the Presidential Mansion in
j Washington, will be omitted on to-morrow.
— ass
The Burnside expedition is believed to
j have at last commenced active operations —
Tbf fleet left Hatteras Inlet on-Wednesday
morning, sailing north, its destination un.
derstood to be Roanoke Island, distant forty
miles. Gen. iluger, commander at Norfolk,
informed one of the passengers at Old- Point
under the flag of trdoe on Saturday, that a
dispatch had befen receive! to tho effeot that
j the expedition had reached Roanoke Isla d
Thursday, aud commenced an attack on the
:CoDfjderate work* early on Friday" morning,
and were twice remised. Roanoke Island
commands the entrance to Albemarle and
j Currituck, and is said to'be strongly forti
jfied. It is stated aho' that Gov. Wise is in
!c mraand of 5,000 troops af'Nig's head, on
the outer beach, off tbe lower point of the Is
The dispatches from Tennessee state that
the Federal troops were pursuing tbe re
creating Confederates in the direction of
Paris on Thursday, and that it was expected
that Gen. Grant would attack Fort Donelson
|on Friday. This is on the Cumberland
; about tweive miles distant from Fort Henry.
Lite Southern papers state that Fort Dooel-
Ed be defended by three thousand
Gen. Wilson's division left New
vy., on Thursday, aud advanced to
ver, above Muufordville, but could
no further on account of the c indi
te roads. The divisions of the army
:ucky, under Generals Thomas,
.nd Buell, are preparing for an ad'
;o Tennessee,
telligencs from Missouri indicates
Federal forces are concentrating for
portant movement,
vessels, a portion of Gen. Butler's
n,Milled from Boston fjr the mouth
t-aissipp. on Sato d iy. ...
■ival at New York bring* into li
lt the late movement in ihe Savan
ts' has been greatly exu_.or.ated.—
dition was simply a reponr_oiasanee,*
. 00-inpoa.ii of ii few gunboats carrying about
two Irnfasanri tftei_. The.vessels.jjptered the
.Savannah YiVer f.o.n two,different e.tuaries,
: but flund the channel obstructed. Several
CoofetfenUe vessels wets-!discovered and
;tired bo",' and thjs ecQQunts.;for*the 'report of
firing-heai-d'. The main,, part of the expedi
tioni had returned to Port R oa the 30th'
Those amiable Peruvians are still on the
"rampage." They have been trying to as
sassinate their President, Gen. Castilla, but
he was obstinate and wouldn't be assassins
A scene occurred in St., Paul's Church, Alexan
dria, Virginia, on Sunday morning, February 9th,
1862, which has, perhaps, never had a parallel
among civilized nations, certainly not in the .his
tory of this country. Tho officiating minister—
Rev. K. T. Stewart—had gone through the Mom
ing Prayer of the Episcopal Church as far as the
Litany, the prayer for the President being omitted
but without anj thing in its place, and was pro
ceeding with the Litany, when an interruption oc
curred of the character which the law
as " brawling"—that is, the intervention of noise
and tuuault by certain persons, who had come to
the church with the intention of interrupting the
service should it not proceed according to their
wishes. These persons commenced the disturb
ance as soon as they found the prayer for the
President omitted. One of them. Captain Farm-
worth, of the Eighth Illinois Cavalry, who sal
near the chancel, dressed in uniform, with some
five or six of his soldiers near him, undertook to
officiate in prayer (if prayer it can be called; by
reading the prayer for the President of the Unite.!
States. How far he went in it does not appear in
j the confusion, but soon quitting his position as tiie
offerer of prayer, he advanced to tho altar where
Mr. Stewart was kneeling, still continuing th«
! Litany, and ordered his arrest. Mr. Stewart
I was dragged from his knees by the soldiers.
! The ground of the arrest Captain Farnsworth,
j distinctly avowed to be the o mint ion of the prauer
j for the President of the United States. With tain
j avowal, he said, " I arrest you by the authority ol
j the United States, as a rebel and a traitor"
j " and I," responded Mr. Stewart, who by that
j time bad advanced to the chancel rails, to Capt. F.
"summon you to answer at the judgment seat ol
the King of Kings and Lord of Lords|for inter
fering, by force of arms, with His ambassador,
while in the act of presenting the petitions of Hii
-people at His altar." The solemnity of this ap
peal apparently caused the parties to fall back and
j pause, but soon the soldiers were ordered to sei*a
j Mr. Stewart, which two of them did with great vio-
I lence, forcing the prayer book from his
"hands, one of them drawing a revolver. Another
revolver was presented to an old and venerated
citizen within the chancel, when the officer ordered
the soldier not to lire. Very soon, a considerable
I number of armed soldiers appeared in the church.
j.Mr. Stewart, refusing te yield voluntarily, was
j dragged by foroe from the altar, and, through the
! aisle, out of tho church. . He mm iv the surplice
which he wore through the streets, anU at Col!
Farnsworth's quarters, where he was tuken.
Capt Faros worth said that he went to Church
intending to arrest Mr. Stewart if he should offer
any |»rayer for the Confederate States. Near him
lin the same pew, sat Mr. Morton, the "detective"
agent of thu United States governmem
who there gave orders to Captain Earns'
worth to make the arrest, which was executed as
above described. Mr. Morton has declared that,
he was acting under authority from Washington.
The scene in the Church was suoh as- may be
imagined under such circumstances. Gentlemen
were indignant aud excited, and ladies giving ut
terance to thoir feelings of grief aud indignation,
but, »f course, no serious «ffort was made to pre
vent the arrest. Mr. Stewart was taken away,
and the congregation dispersed. It is proper ta
state that these proceedings were without the know
ledge 'of Sea. Montgomery, the Military Gover
nor of the city, and were strongly (■ on doomed by
/.in, when they came to his knowledge. He tele
graphed to Washington for iustructions from the
government, which, when received, were of such
a nature as to lead to Mr. St.-wart's release after
a fsw hours detention.
Tae huu«i involved iv the transaction, thus
iui perfectly sketched, are too grave to admit of
comment. It will, however, be well to state that
Mr. Stewart only insists upon the right-; of all am
bassadors to communicate with their Kiug, iiu.
trammelled by civil or military interference,'and
that in no case have any of the services d? this
Church assumed a political aspect; no prayer has
been offered, aud no sentiment advanced at
any time that was calculated to offend even
themiost sensitive oritic, but public worship is in
terrupted, soldiers invade the chancel, and with
drawn revolvers, drag the minister of religion
from its altar, becauso he will not do their bidding.
The undersigned were present in Church, and
testify to the facts as above stated. It may be
proper to state that by request of the Vestry, ia
the absence of their rector, the Rev. George A.
3<uith and R?v. Mr. Stewart have boeu officiating
in St. Paul's Cliureh for several \yeeks past, and
that Mr. Smith was in the Chancel at the tinij
A. 11. CUftRIE,
W. A. HARPEtf,
Copies of the above sta'-emeut have .'beep • nt
_| tl J e Pre,id ' Bnt of *»• United Stale* and Geucr U
I MvLlellan.

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