The Sun's view of the war: excerpts from editions of July 1, 1863

June 26, 2005

Here is The Sun's view of war news as the Battle of Gettysburg loomed. This summary was published Wednesday, July 1:

THE WAR NEWS. - We live in stirring times, and each day has its record of important and startling events. Yesterday, Gen. Schenck, commander of this military department, issued a proclamation declaring martial law in this city and the Western Shore counties of the State. The presence of a hostile army within the limits of this department has led to this action as one of usual and proper means of defense and security.

All the civil authorities of the State, counties or city are to continue in the discharge of their duty as in times of peace, but be subject to suspension so far as they may interfere with the exercise of necessary military authority or regulations.

All peaceful citizens are required to remain quietly at their homes, and continue in pursuit of their ordinary avocations, subject to a call for personal service or an other necessary requisition for military purposes.

The order is to be revoked when the occasion which called it forth has passed away. ...

The special rules and regulations established under the order require: First, that firearms are not to be sold without a special permit. Second, that no person will be allowed to leave the city without a pass properly signed by the provost marshal. Third, that no person will be permitted to pass the barricades between the hours of 10 p.m. and 4 a.m. without the countersign to the guard. Fourth, that no clubhouse or place of like character will be permitted to remain open without the consent of the general commanding. Fifth, that all bars, coffeehouses, drinking saloons, and other places of the same character are to be closed between the hours of 8 p.m. and 8 a.m. Sixth, that all places of business other than apothecaries and printing houses of the daily newspapers be closed at 5 p.m. to give the citizens an opportunity to drill.

The general news of the position of military affairs in this State is interesting, although the military necessities of the situation will not permit the publication of anything concerning the principal movements of the Federal army.

The Confederates who occupied Westminster on Monday evacuated that place yesterday morning, the town being soon after occupied by a large force of Federal troops.

It is supposed that the Confederate cavalry were the same as were operating in Montgomery county on Sunday and Monday, and that they have now moved north to join the main body of their forces in Pennsylvania. It is reported that a considerable number of stragglers were captured. Railway communication has been resumed with Frederick city, and also with Westminster. Six bridges were destroyed on the Northern Central railroad beyond Hanover junction.

There is nothing of special interest from Western Maryland, but it is expected that there will be important intelligence received today from that section of the State.

From Pennsylvania the intelligence is that the Confederates evacuated York yesterday morning, moving towards Carlisle. Gen. Lee and staff were at Carlisle on Monday night. It is believed that the Confederate army is concentrating in the valley between Shippensburg and Chambersburg, anticipating an attack from the army of the Potomac.

A large body of infantry were, however, known to be moving north yesterday morning. It was reported that Gen. Pleasonton's (Federal) pickets had been seen within four miles of York. At Harrisburg, it was rumored that the Confederates, forty thousand strong, would probably move upon the city during the day, but the latest telegram reports that the invading forces had fallen back beyond Carlisle, and that all was quiet. ...

The advices from Rosecrans's army are up to Sunday. The main body of the Federal force was then eighteen miles south of Murfreesboro', and the forward movement continuing although it had been retarded by the heavy rains. All the Confederate force has fallen back to Tullahoma, occupying entrenchments and the commanding positions in the vicinity. Several quite severe engagements took place during the movement, with considerable loss on both sides.

Vicksburg advices were up to the 23rd. The siege was progressing favorably. On the 20th, the cannonading was kept up from morning until noon, but elicited no response from the garrison. On the night of the 22nd, the Confederates came out and drove back the Federal pickets, but were in turn themselves driven back to their entrenchments. Gen. Johnston's movements seem to be very mysterious. At last accounts he was reported to be moving south, having withdrawn all his forces from the Big Black river.

An arrival from New Orleans reports that the Confederates attacked a bridge at Lafouch Crossing on the 20th, but were repulsed. At Bayou des Allemands they attempted to burn a bridge, but were also repulsed with considerable loss.

A deserter from Port Hudson reports the provisions of the garrison as nearly exhausted.

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