by John Beauchamp Jones

            SEPTEMBER 12TH.—Clear, and quite cold.

            Gen. Hood has agreed to a short armistice with Sherman, ten days, proposed by the latter. Our people don’t know what to think of this, and the government is acquiescent.

            But there is a mournful gloom upon the brows of many, since Gen. Grant holds the Weldon Road, and is daily receiving reinforcements, while we get but few under the Conscription system and the present organization of the bureau.

            There is a rumor of an intention to abandon Petersburg, and that 20,000 old men and boys, etc. must be put in the trenches on our side immediately to save Richmond and the cause.

            Over 100,000 landed proprietors, and most of the slaveowners, are now out of the ranks, and soon, I fear, we shall have an army that will not fight, having nothing to fight for. And this is the result of the pernicious policy of partiality and exclusiveness, disintegrating society in such a crisis, and recognizing distinction of ranks, —the higher class staying home and making money, the lower class thrust into the trenches. And then the infamous schedule, to make the fortunes of the farmers of certain counties.

            I bought 30 yards of brown cotton to-day, at $2.50 per yard, from a man who had just returned from North Carolina. The price here is $5. I sold my dear old silver reel some time ago (angling) for $75, the sum paid for this cotton.

            Already the Dispatch is publishing paragraphs in praise of the “Bureau of Conscription,” never dreaming that it strikes both Gen. Bragg and the President. These articles are written probably by Lieut.-Col. Lay or Col. August. And the Examiner is opening all its batteries again on the President and Gen. Bragg. The conscription men seem to have the odds; but the President, with a single eye, can discern his enemies, and when fully aroused is apt to pounce upon them like a relentless lion. The times are critical, however, and the Secretary of War is very reserved, even when under positive orders to act.

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