Rebel War Clerk

OCTOBER 13TH.—Northern papers, received last night, speak of a battle at Perryville, Kentucky, on the 9th instant, in which the Abolitionists lost, by their own confession, 2000 killed and wounded, which means 10,000. They say Bragg’s forces held a portion of the field after the battle. If this prove not a glorious victory for our arms, I don’t know how to read Abolition journals.

I see that our Congress, late on Saturday night (they adjourn to-day), passed an act increasing the salaries of officers and employees in the departments residing at Richmond. This will make the joint compensation of my son and myself $3000; this is not equal to $2000 a year ago. But Congress failed to make the necessary appropriation. The Secretary might use the contingent fund.

Another act authorizes the President to appoint twenty additional brigadier-generals, and a number of lieutenant-generals.

The New York Herald, and even the Tribune, are tempting us to return to the Union, by promises of protecting slavery, and an offer of a convention to alter the Constitution, giving us such guarantees of safety as we may demand. This is significant. We understand the sign.

Letters from Gen. Lee do not indicate an immediate purpose to retire from the Potomac; on the contrary, he has ordered Gen. Loring, if practicable, to menace Wheeling and Pennsylvania, and form a junction with him via the Monongahela and Upper Potomac. But Loring does not deem it safe to move all his forces (not more than 6000) by that route; he will, however, probably send his cavalry into Pennsylvania.

And Gen. Lee does not want any more raw conscripts. They get sick immediately, and prove a burden instead of a benefit. He desires them to be kept in camps of instruction, until better seasoned (a term invented by Gen. Wise) for the field.

Senator Brown, of Mississippi, opposed the bill increasing our salaries, on the ground that letters from himself, indorsed by the President, applying for clerkships for his friends, remained unanswered. He did not seem to know that this was exclusively the fault of the head clerk, Mr. Randolph, who has the title of Secretary of War.

And the Examiner denounces the bill, because it seems to sanction a depreciation of our currency! What statesmanship! What logic!


A Rebel War Clerk’s Diary at the Confederate States Capital, By John Beauchamp Jones

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