From the Charleston Mercury, 8/2/1862
WAR GOSSIP IN RICHMOND.
(FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT.)
RICHMOND, Wednesday, July 30.
The cartel agreed upon by Major Generals DIX and HILL – the latter taking care to append C.S.A. to his name wherever signed - is published this morning. The Examiner urges, with some force, that it delivers a surplus of 8000 Yankee prisoners and leaves citizens seized at will by the Yankees, to rot in dungeons. We have been tricked, doubtless, or will be. We have sent off some thousands of wounded Yankees, but I have yet to hear of the first one of our wounded being returned. Speaking of the Examiner, I see it copies THE MERCURY'S article on Secret Sessions.
The President issues a strong Proclamation tomorrow. Butler is outlawed, and to be hung if caught. Hunter and Pope, with their officers, if taken, are to be excepted from the cartel of exchange, and kept in prison till the close of the war, and held as hostages for citizens who have been seized. Officers and men serving with negro regiments or brigades are to be treated to the tender mercies of the black flag. This is well.
The Enquirer says McClellan will maintain his base – a ruse, to enable General Pendleton to shell the transports; for it is pretty will known that McClellan is going to try the Fredericksburg route, in 'On to Richmond' No. 3. General P. left yesterday, at 2, p.m., for an important bluff in Prince George county, taking with him forty-two pieces of artillery. As it will be four or five days before this letter gets in print, and by that time General P. will have done all he can do, I feel no hesitation in making this revelation.
Forty-six hundred Yankees are camped on Belle Isle, in about five hundred tents. It is a beautiful encampment, regularly laid out, with a wide long street, which they call Broadway. Many wells have been dug by them, so they have plenty of fresh water. Squads of ten or twenty are allowed to bathe under guard. They are fed on beef, bread and peas. Only one hundred and eighty men are required to guard them, and as yet, only one has escaped, and he was retaken. Nevertheless, I meet every day decidedly Yankee faces in the streets.
Soldiers with the palmetto in their caps continue to arrive. I learn that Gen. Evans' troops, or a part of them, are at Camp Lee - the New Fair Grounds.
It is very hot here. One constantly realizes in his own person Mr. Mantilini's idea of a drowned corpse – dem most, unpleasant body.' In spite of perspiration, we have little to drink, except river water, which is muddy, and spring water, which has a vile taste. Wells are being dug on the street corners, but, so far, with poor returns.
An evening paper is talked of, under the conduct of Messrs. Shepherdson, Randall & DaPonte. Mr. Pollard announces a forthcoming Life of Ashby, and Mr. DeWitt is at work on the Campaigns of the Valley. A column of the Dispatch is filled with advertisements for substitutes, and another for deserters. Orders have been given to clean up the hospitals. HERMES.