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the westward of the Junction of the Tuge
la with its southern branch, the Little Tu gela River. The road from Frere would pass along the foot of a range of moun tains on the right hand. British cavalry scouts had, it was stated, some days pre viously come . across parties of Boers at Potgieters Drift and.it was ascertained that. General Joubert. was making a for tified position in the neighborhood. When Buller- had gained the drift his first' step was to inform himself as to the locality, and strength of this position. It was, he said, about four and a half miles in the, front, away from the river and of a Btrong character. Five days have passed in deliberate preparation for con tinuing the march to Dewdrop. Not only has -the transport of the column to be steadily brought up,- but relief supplies for Ladysmith must' be close in the rear. General -Warren's 'column, it is now clear from the last dispatch : received. Is that he had received information of tha alleged Boer expedition in these seas he made- a strong argument against: the pos sibility of the expedition being in exist ence ' ' :.' ROBERTS REPORTS REPULSE OF BOERS LONDON, Jan.. 17.— The War Office has received the following dispatch from Lord Roberts, dated . Cape ;Town, January 16, evening: . , ; ,• ... . "On the: 15th the Boers, made a deter mined attack, on French's advance post, held by the New Zealand Mounted Rifles and a detachment of the First Yorkshires. The Boers were repulsed, having twenty killed. Their wounded are estimated at not less than fifty." The attack was pre ceded by a long range fire from "one gun. Otherwise the situation Is unchanged." Special Dispatch to The Call. WASHINGTON. Jan. 17.— The amendments made yesterday by the Senate Committee on Interoceanic Canals to the House Nlcaraguan canal bill have been printed and circulated in the Senate. The amendments prove to be more radical than at first announced by the members of the committee. The language of the measure Is practically changed throughout and several of the House provisions are entirely omitted. The most important omissions are the provisions which are made In the House bill for the abrogation of the Clayton-Bulwer treaty and for the pur chase of existing concessions with Nicaragua and Costa Rica, the latter pro vision In the House measure carrying an appropriation of J0.000,000. The Senate bill also removes many of the limitations of the House bill as to the persons to be employed in the proposed work. The provision for a commis sion to act with the Secretary of War is eliminated. The Senate committee also makes specific provision that the canal shall be of sufficient size to accommodate vessels of the largest tonnage, and it in creases the appropriation from $130,000,000 to 1140,000,000. PALL HEADQUARTERS, WELLINGTON HOTEL. WASHINGTON, Jan. 17. — The Call correspondent is Informed to-night by a member of the L Foreign Affairs Committee of the Senate that an understanding exists be tween the United States and Great Britain under which this Government may proceed with the construction of the Nlcaraguan canal without ref erence to the provisions of the Clayton-Bulwer treaty. This statement cannot be confirmed from an administration sodYce, but the probability of its correctness is Indicated by the determination of Congress to press the bill authorizing the building of the waterway and of the failure of the administration to push, nego tiations for the abrogation of the Qlaytsn-Bulwer treaty, or to make any effort to discountenance the activity of canal advocates. There Is no doubt that since the negotiations for the abrogation of the Clay ton-Bulwer treaty failed some months ago, and since the agitation for the con struction of the canal has been taken up by Congress, a discussion, either offi cial or unofficial, has occurred between the two governments respecting American construction of the canal, and a member of the Foreign Relations Committee as serted that he was satisfied Great Erltaln had given this country assurance that it need not let the convention of 1850 stand In the way of action. It has been known by the authorities for a year past that Great Britain was willing to abro gate the convention on the condition that she received concessions in the Alaskan boundary controversy. And It Is possible that if she has made the statement credited to her she has coupled it with the understanding that her rights else where *will receive consideration in return for her concession. Under the Clayton-Bulwer treaty the United. States and Great Britain both declared that they would not assume or exercise dominion over any part of Cen tral America in connection with the construction of a canal or maintain exclusive control over the waterway. Representative Sulzer has prepared an amendment which he will offer to the Nlcaraguan canal bill when it comes up in the House, requiring that American labor be employed in connection with the construction of the canal. In explana tion Sulzer said to-night: "I favor digging, building and owning absolutely the Nacaragua canal by this Government, and I want to see the United States go ahead at once without wait ing for the consent of any other nation on earth. But the work should be done by American workmen, and no laborer should receive less than $3 per day for eight hours' •work.- There should be no padrone »ystem resorted to. It should be work of American brain, brawn and genius, and every sanitary and healthful pre caution should be taken in order to protect the health of the workingmen." acting in co-operation with Buller's ad vance guard by moving his division In parallel line on the west. While Buller's plan of operations has been maturing General Buller, it may be presumed, has been hurrying his com mandoes from the center of his defensive line of the Tugela to the extreme west. Some' checks may have been caused by the knowledge, that the British com mander might at any moment make a serious move from Colenso or farther to the east at Pietermaritzburg or Wee nan road to Ladysmith. WARSHIPS TO ESCORT THE MULE TRANSPORTS NEW ORLEANS, Jan. 17.— 1t is stated here that there are British warships with in easy reach of the Mississippi, assigned to the duty of escorting the mule trans ports when they. shall have been loaded with animals from New Orleans for South Africa. The presence of the warships in the Gulf waters is said to have been brought about by advices received at the British War Office in London to the effect that. two old hulks had been fitted out by American sympathizers with the Boers with the avowed Intention of capturing and sinking the mule transports as soon as they left the mouth of the river on their voyage across the Atlantic. These advices, it is said, were cabled from Lon don to Captain Marsham, In charge of the buying of mules in this country for th© British army. Captain Marsham to-day admitted that there were British war ships within easy call of the river's mouth, and while not absolutely denying ALL THREE MEN SLAIN BY COLONEL COLSON FRANKFORT, Ky., Jan. 17.— At the Coroner's inquest all the eye-wltnesse3 of the tragedy yesterday in which three men were killed testified that Demaree was killed by Colson. Several witnesses swore positively that Scott was not the man who shot first, and described the man who began the shooting as a tall, handsome man. who used a long pistol. This tallied with the description of Col son and his revolver. • The Coroner s Jury returned a verdict to the effect that Scott. Julian and De maree came to their deaths by pistol shots fired by David G. Colson. Captain B. B. Golden, who also was shot by Colson, is very much improved to-day and the physicians entertain a hope of his recovery. Golden says that he was hit by Colson's first shot and that Demaree was killed by Colson's reckless ness. Colson passed the night in Jail. It ib regarded as fortunate that the af fair had no relation to politics and that both the principals and two of the dead belonged to the same political party, so that the trouble could not be traced to politics by any sort of reasoning.- it is believed the affair will have a terrorizing and yet tranqullizing effect on everybody The crowds in the city are smaller than they were any day this week. ALLEGED PROTEST OF ENGLAND AND GERMANY Washington Correspondent Declares Both Nations Will Oppose the Canal. * CHICAGO, Jan. 17.— A special to the Times-Herald from Washington says: Both Great Britain and Germany have formally served notice that they will pro test against fortification of the Nicaragua canal If that waterway be constructed by tne American Government. These notices have been filed during the last three days orally by Embassadors Pauncefote and Yon Holleben. They will be followed later if necessary by formal or written protests. It Is believed both France and Russia and perhaps other maritime powers will Join in the protest if the United States persists in constructing the canal upon the basis provided in the bill reported from the House Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce last Friday and agreed to, with some amendments, by tho Senate Committee oh Interoceanic Canal yesterday. Medals Presented. Special Dispatch to The Call. WOODLAND. Jan. 17.— Medals provided by the Native Sons were presented to tha volunteers of the Spanish-American war this . evening. A committee of Native Daughters assisted the Native Sons in tha ceremonies. A musical and literary pro gramme was rendered and speeches were made by A. W. North, G. V. Martin and Ed E. Leake. V >. fc - General \ Buller's movements to attack on the west may lead to a counter attack by the Boers on the east. Nothing is moie probable than. that. any Boers there may have been to the east ward will by this time have been recalled to Colenso as a center, or possibly fur ther west, but however deserted Colenso and Groblers Kloof may have appeared it Is. absurd to suppose that it has been evacuated. That their numbers have been decreased to meet General Buller's ad vance Is true, and it may -be- part of the British plan for General Clery's division to make a second attempt" to cross the Tugela at this point simultaneously with Buller's attack on the left. From the time that the official dispatch was published last Friday stating that General Buller had that day seized a port at Potgieters Drift on the Tugela .River the censorship has been so strictly main tained that nothing but mere conjecture was possible on the course of events. Now the first real glimpse is afforded of the week's campaign for the relief of Lady smith. When Sir George "White heliographed that he was "hard pressed" during, the desperate assault of the Boers on Caesar's camp last Saturday week, January 5, Bul ler promptly sent Clery's division down to the river front at Colenso. His dispatch said he had sent forward "every available man," from which it could be inferred that the bulk of his troops were behind Chieveley, at Frere, and again behind that camp at Estcourt. Clery reported that ho found the trenches full of Boers in a fortified position, doubly strengthened since Buller's disastrous repulse of De cember 14. He did not attempt anything further than a reconnoissance, his orders probably being to content himself with a feint in order to occupy the attention of the Boers at that point. Buller himself was hardly prepared for the advance, which he was contemplating on an elaborate scale and a strategical scheme of outflanking his opponent. The reinforcements he had received since.'he fell back from Colenso must have' placed him In command of more than 30,000 men. General Sir Charles Warren had Joined him. an officer whose Griqual and expedi tion years ago earned for him a reputation of being able to outmaneuver the Boers in their own peculiar style of fighting and on their own ground. From Estcourt War ren was in a position to Btart on a" long flanking movement, either to the east by Weenan or to the west by. Bethany, mak ing a semicircle to Ladysmith. Buller. with his headquarters at Frere^ could make an Inner movement, choosing his point cf crossing the Tugela either direct ly in front or by turning movements. on either side. He chose the left, or. west ward, route and. keeping his plans secret, was able to announce the first successful step of his advance in his dispatch 'from Potgleter* Drift. This ford Is a little" to WHY WHEELER HAS RESIGNED Given No Active Service by Otis. Special Dispatch to The Call. CALL. HEADQUARTERS. WELLING TON HOTEL, WASHINGTON. Jan. 17.— No doubt exists In the minds of friends of Brigadier General Joseph E. Wheeler that his return from the Philippines in com pliance with his own request Is due to the failure St General Otis to give him active service in the field. In certain quarters an effort is made to attribute General Wheeler's return to In ability to stand the climate and to his age. In refutation of the former his friends point to a statement he made after visiting the American lines: "The impression that the country is un healthy Is wrong." Regarding his age it Is pointed out that he is only about a year older than General Otis. Friends of General Wheeler assert that politics Is responsible for his failure to re ceive proper recognition In the Philip pines. They believe the politics originated in Washington. Orders to General Wheeler to return were cabled about a week ago. War Department officials will not admit that the general has resigned and say they expect if he contemplates tendering his resignation he will do so in person. Under the decision of the Judiciary Com mittee of the House, submitted at the last session. General Wheeler will have to stand for a new election in case he de sires to resume his Congressional career. He has not resigned his seat, but it Is con sidered vacant. The following cablegrams were received by the War Department from General Otis to-day: MANILA. Jan. 17.— Schwan's troops independ ent of Batangaa province, about to move east ward into provinces of Tayabas and Lajruna. Wheaton moving on Lemerk and Taai, and has navy co-operating. Casualties slight; Insur gent loss considerable in men and property, as they keep up constant opposition. Expedition under Kobbe leaves for hemp ports to-nisrht. General Hushes absent on western coast Panay policing that section. A band of eighty six Tasaloa which landed at Nesros In De cember, was struck by Byrne • In the Nejsros mountains. Byrne's force killed nineteen and captured twenty-eißht rifles and ammunition. No American casualties. Troops in Northern Luzon are pursuing robber bands with «rood results. OTIS. FOUR MURDERED IN THE KLONDIKE Rolph-O'Brien Arrested on Suspicion. Special Dispatch to The Call. SEATTLE, Jan. 17.— Passengers reach- Ing here to-night on the steamer City of Topeka who are Just out from Dawsnn report that four foul murders were com mitted on Christmas day at a point near Mlnto. The victims are: Fred H. Clayson. clothing merchant of Skaguay and son of E. Clayson of Seattle: Olson, a lineman In the telegraph service of the mounted police at Tagish, and two men en route from Dawson, their names being tin known as yet. A man giving his name as Rolph or O'Brien Is under arrest at Tag l3h, while the mounted police are scour- Ing the country for two or three others who are believed to be Implicated in tho murders, although Colonel Walsh states that some of the murderers may have escaped to the States. A. R. Gibson, who is just out from Daw son states that Clayson left Dawson De cember 17 with nearly $30<X> in cash and drafts, while the others had several thou sand dollars. Olson reached Selkirk De cember 24, the same day Clayson arrived. Richardson, the mall contractor, joined them, and together the three journeyed twenty-eight miles to Minto, where they had a Christmas dinner. At this time two Klomllkers. known to Clayson. arrived, and that afternoon in company with Clay son and Olson the four set out for Skag uay. Word had gone on before of their coming, and when they failed to arrive at the next station of Hootchiko Inquiry be gan to be made. Within a few days a general alarm was sent out. A few miles from Mlnto Rolph waa found and his actions were such as to cause suspicion, and a few days later his arrest. He had considerable money and drafts in his possession, which he could not satisfactorily explain, and to vartou* people gave contradictory statements, ai to his previous movements and destina tion. The police feel certain that he is one of the murderers and that he had two or three accomplices. More definite new* is expected on the steamer City of Seattle British Commanders Are Expected to Profit by the Recent Defeat at Colenso and Attack Without Delay. ¦ Therefore, Before Many Hours News May Be Received of a Great Battle, in "Which at Least Forty Thousand Troops Are Engaged. ? rSj«><-l«.t Cable to the New York Herald. Copy right. l»'», by James Gordon Bennett. Re put: 1 . ¦ r. of this dispatch is prohibited. All rights reserved in the United Stites and , Great Britain. J LONDON, Jan. 18.— The special correspondent of the Daily Telegraph sends this dispatch: SPURNANS FARM, NA TAL, Wednesday, Tan. 17, 9:20 p. m. — I am permitted to wire that General Lyttelton yester day afternoon ferried and forded Fotgieters Drift and seized with little opposition a line of low ridges a mile therefrom. During the night a howitzer battery was carried across, and to-day from Mount Alice, near Swartz Kop. naval guns and howitzers shelled effectively the Boer position, which is a strong one. General Sir Charles Warren also to-day crossed the Tugela, six miles farther to the west, near Wagon Drift, with a force of all arms, in the face of a hot and heavy fire from the Boer cannon and rifles. He has ef fected a most satisfactory lodg ment two miles inland toward Spion Kop. This dispatch from its special correspondent is published by the Daily Mail: P I E T E RMARITZBURG, NATAL. Wednesday, Jan. 17. — Xews has been received here that General Buller is making satisfactory progress. No par ticulars have yet been permitted to transpire here. Fper!sJ Cable to The Call and New fork Her nid. Copyrighted. 1900. by James Gordon nennett. i LONDON, Jan. 15.— At last the mys tery of General Buller's movements J Is solved. At 2 o'clock this morn- j Irq a special cable to the Dally ! Telegraph from its war correspond ent. Mr. Benr.et Burleigh. with the Lady pmith relief force, was received In Lon don, giving the important news that both Buller and Warren have crossed the Tugela. between Potgieters Drift and Wagon Drift and have seized a strong po rition from a mile to two miles to the north of the river bank. General War ren. It appears, fought his way across against a heavy fire. This is the news that all Great Britain has been waiting for since last Thursday. Last night there was evident expectation That news of importance would come to relieve the suspense. A great crowd gath ered at the war office. The Duke of Nor folk was among those who at half-past eleven awaited the issuing of a final bulle tin for the night. At twenty-five minutes to twelve it was announced that there was no news for publication, with which unsatisfactory announcement the anxious r.ation was forced to go to bed. This Important news bears out what I cabled resterday as to the probable plan of General Butter's campaign. He is pushing ahead on his left, where he has Ftrength. It dots not follow that he will entangle his cavalry and light artlllery among the upper foothills of the Drakens btxrg range, in which he will operate. Thej=e forces may be, and probably are far away on the right. In fact, it was stated Tuesday morning that a large col umn had been pent down to Durban and were going thence into Zululand for the purpose of working around on the ex treme eastern flank and heading for the Utrecht and Vryheld districts. Unless they ran cut lr« on the Transvaal com munications they will find themselves at or near the Ladysmith and Newcastle railway. '. From the Telegraph's dispatch It is evi dent that General Buller has a strong force of Boers in front of him. As Gen eral Littleton's brigade crossed on Tues day and General Warren's column yester day, and the shelling of the Boer posi tion bepan Immediately,' it is quite proba ble that a great battle will be fought to day, or perhaps has already started, for General Culler Is not the man, after the lesson learned at Colenso, to give the Boers any more time than he Is com pelled to do, by reason of the condition of n!« own men, to hurry reinforcements across the country to the threatened posi tion. We may therefore hear before many hours of the result of this battle, In which not less than 40,000 men will be engaged. Boers Do Not Make Much Resistance and Are Said to Have Been Caught Napping, but It Re-mains to Be Seen Whether Buller's Forward Movement Will Be Sue- X s "1 acting In co-operation with Buller's ad- • eessiui. . his division in BRITISH RELIEF FORCES GROSS THE TUGELA ON WAY TO LADYSMITH [Special Cable to the New York Herald. Copy right, 190). by James Gordon Bennett. Re publlcatlon of this dispatch Is prohibited. AH rights reserved in the United States and Great Britain.] LONDON, Jan. 18.— This dispatch from its special correspondent is published in the Daily Mail: SPURNANS FARM, Wed nesday, % Jan. 17. — After four days' rest on the south side of the Tugela our advance north ward began yesterday. Lyttel ton's brigade crossed Potgieters Drift last evening and took the kopjes on our right. Warren's division to-day made an attack on the enemy's left flank, crossing the river. Last Thursday Lord Dundon ald, with his mounted brigade, seized Springfield bridge by a quick march *and occupied a strong position on the hill com manding the drift. The Boers were caught nap ping and unprepared for the British advance. Some of them were bathing in the river. The ferry-boat at Potgieters Drift was on the further bank of the Tugela. Lieutenant Carlyle and sonic men of the South Af rican Light Horse swam across and brought it back. General Lyttelton's brigade was then sent to hold a position on the hill commanding the drift. ..;..,:...,. ;... - DEMONSTRATION ON THE MODDER RIVER MODDER RIVER, Cnpe Colony, Jan. 17.— There was a demonstration in force under General Methuen yesterday, a di vision being engaged, with the object of ascertaining the strength and disposition of the Boer force and also In order to try to draw the Boers from Kimberley, where lately they have been active. The British discovered the Boers In great force, being reinforced from the di rection of Jacobsdal. At 4:30 the artillery opened fire, the shells dropping in the Boer entrenchments with great precision. The attr.ck was directed against the Boer left. The firing continued until sunset, mostly with artillery, although the guards on the right fired some long-range vol leys. The Boers reserved their fire until the British were returning to the camp In the darkness, when six shells followed them. There were no casualties among the British troops. HOW FOREIGNERS , REACH THE TRANSVAAL LONDON. Jan. 18.— A correspondent of the; Dally Mall at Lourenzo Marquez says: "Numerous foreigners arrive here In French vessels. They enter In a station outside the town and leave at a station before the Transvaal is reached. Then they walk across the border and rejoin the train. Hundreds have passed through In that way since the outbreak of war." DEPARTURE OF THE SECOND CONTINGENT SYDNEY, Jan. 17.— The departure of the second Australian contingent for South Africa to-day took place amid unprece dented scenes. The streets were decorated and thronged with crowds, of demonstra tors. , Outside the United States consulate was a streamer bearing the words, "America wishes Australia's patriots god speed." . . SHELLS FIRED INTO THE WOMEN'S LAAGER LONDON, Jan. 17.— The following dis patch has been received from Mafeking under date of January 3; The enemy began a renewed and vigor ous attack on Mafeking on January 1 and deliberately fired six nine-pounder shells Into the women's laager, killing a little girl and wounding two children. Th© strategical position Is unchanged. BOERS BOMBARDED WITH CAPTURED GUN RENSBERG, Cape Colony, Tuesday, Jan. 16.— The Boers opened an artillery duel this morning, using a captured B.rit ish 15-pounder, which the British gunners ultimately silenced. The British kept up a searching fire all day long on the Boer kopjes and also dragged up another gun to the summit of Koleskop. COLONEL PLUMMER'S MARCH. LOtIRENZO MARQUEZ, Monday, Jan. 15.— A dispatch by way of Beira, dated Thursday, January 11. announces that Colonel. Plummer has arrived near Mochudi, about 100 miles north of Mafe king, with' a portion of his forces from tuii. ? :^/i MUST REMOVE WOMEN. STERKSTROOM. Wednesday, Jan. 17.— General Gatacre has warned the Boer commandant that If the women are not removed they must take their chances of being shot in the event of an attack. All Is quiet here. ENGLAND WILL NOT BLOCK THE CANAL PROJECT Secret Agreement Said to Have Been Reached by British and American Governments. In Return for Concessions in Alaska or Else where Salisbury Will Not Demand Observ ance of the Clayton-Bulwer Treaty. PRICE FIVE CENTS. VOLUME LXXXVII — NO. 49. SAN FRANCISCO, THURSDAY, JANUARY 18, 1900. The San Francisco Call.