THE EXCHANGE OF PRISONERS.
The general exchange of prisoners has been resumed and the understanding is, we believe, that it will be continued until all the prison-houses on both sides are emptied and the captives liberated. Humanity may smile again. It is almost impossible to conceive the joy which this announcement and the return of absent loved ones will convey to thousands of households, and the prisoners themselves, Confederates and Yankees, will rejoice as theyhave never rejoiced before. We learn that the exchange will go on at the rate of about 1,000 per day.
The Examiner says:
We learned at a late hour last night that a dispatch had been received in one of the offices of the Government, stating that the local force in Columbia had been ordered out, and that skirmishing had been going on with the enemy in the vicnity of that city. The dispatch is dated the 14th instant. General Echols succeeds Breckinridge in Southwestern Virginia. Hampton has been made lieutenant-general, and now commands all the cavalry fronting Sherman.
The Dispatch says:
It was reported yesterday morning that our troops were evacuating Wilmington. The report is not confirmed by official dispatches received yesterday. General Baker, in command of our forces at Goldsborough reports to the War Department that he has reason to believe the enemy are concentrating at New Berne, and that they have with them materials for repairing the railroad from New Berne to Kinston. Gideon J. Pillow has been appointed commissary-general of prisoners.
U. S. GRANT
WASHINGTON, D. C., February 16, 1865-5 p. m.
Lieutenant-General GRANT, City Point:
I have just learned from General Meigs and the Commissary-General that requisitions for sixty days' supplies are being filled and sent to Port Royal and that similar requisitions have just been received from General Schofield to be sent to Beaufort, N. C. This does not agree with my understanding with General Sherman. I understood from him that shipments to Port Royal for his army were to cease as soon as he should reach the interior of South Carolina, and that the remainder of his supplies should be ready to meet him at Georgetown, S. C., Cape Fear River, or New Berne, N. C. It will not be possible to accumulate sufficient supplies at all these points, nor will it be possible to keep supplies on ocean transpots as they are exceedingly scarce. Moreover, supplies can be sent from New York and Fort Monroe to any point north of Georgetown much sooner than from Port Royal. We shall hear of Sherman's whereabouts much sooner than they will at Port Royal and can send him supplies sooner than we can send word to Port Royal. It therefore seems to me that to send such a large amount to port Royal now will result in enormous expense and great inconvenience. By direction of the Secretary of War I refer this matter for your instructions.
H. W. HALLECK,
Major-General and Chief of Staff.
CITY POINT, VA., February 16, 1865-7. 30 p. m.
(Received 10. 30 p. m.)
Major-General HALLECK, Washington;
There is no necessity for sending supplies to Port Royal for the use of Sherman's army. There is scarcely a possibility of Sherman's requiring supplies from Port Royal, and if he should we would hear through