5th of November last. Through Brownsville the rebels were in the habit of introducing from Mexico, where they had been previously landed at Matamoras, from abroad, large quantities of munitions of war and military stores. At the same point the export of cotton from the Southern States attained great importance and afforded extensive pecuniary means toward sustaining the rebellion. The capture of Brownsville is, therefore, greatly advantageous to the Union cause, and should it be the precursor of active operations throughout Texas, and at last afford the volunteers from the State of California an opportunity to meet and share the honors of the field of battle with their fellow-soldier from the Atlantic slopes of our Republic, it will be hailed with additional and unmeasured joy by every officer and soldier in their command.
II. In honor of the occasion, Captain John S. Thayer, Fifty Infantry, California Volunteers, commanding Mesilla, is ordered to fire a national salute this day.
III. Surg. George H. Oliver, U. S. Volunteers, is announced as medical purveyor for the district at these headquarters.
By order of Brigadier General Joseph R. West:
JOSEPH F. BENNETT,
[Sub-inclosure Numbers 2.]
Numbers 29.] U. S. CONSULATE, Altona, November 6, 1863.
Honorable W. H. SEWARD,
Secretary of State:
SIR: I have already in former dispatches informed you of the visit of A. Dudley Mann to Hamburg. His agent and business man in this city was one Adams, an American by birth, but now a citizen of Hamburg. I believe that his secession proclivities caused him to be kicked out of Boston.
Encouraged by Consul Anderson, I have spent much time in dogging the footsteps of these men. Their mission was obviously to purchase arms, but by my impetuosity they were foiled in Hamburg at every point. I was so anxious to find out their operations that I unwittingly stepped in upon them. I find, however, that they have purchased arms in Bremen, and that the ship Alsterdam, Captain Benson, lying in Bremerhaven, is chartered by Adams to go to Matamoras - freight, arms and ammunition; also the bark Herbert, Captain Loud, now in Antwerp, is chartered for the same purpose. The Alsterdam will fly a Hamburg and the Herbert an English flag. Mr. Adams left here for Matamoras last week. I would advise a strict lookout for these vessels. I have been told several times that our consular agent at Bremerhaven strongly sympathizes with the South in this rebellion. I named it to Mr. Anderson to-day, and he affirms that a dozen people have told him this. In the absence of Mr. Boernstein, we have no one there but his son, who is quite a young boy.
I have written Consul Crawford to-day, touching the bark Herbert, lying at Antwerp. We have no safe means of communication with Bremerhaven except my going over.
I have the honor to remain, your very obedient servant,