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[From our Washington Correspondent]

To the Editors of the "Jewish Messenger."

I regret my inability to record any favorable change in political affairs, since the date of my last.

The "powers that be" both at the North and the South, remind me of the celebrated individual, who for the sake of consistency, stuck to the truth of his assertion, that he once had the good fortune to own a horse, which measured sixteen feet high; (I believe in his stockings) and although it was apparent he meant "hands" instead of feet, still he had said so, which was enough, (and a trifle to spare), and he would like to be introduced to the gentleman who would presume to question his veracity! Both sections are in the wrong, and if both would remember to forget what they once said, and like sensible beings, start afresh upon the sound basis of what the unrecalled PRESENT demands of them, they would be surprised to find how insignificant the differences are, and how easy of adjustment they would become. Suppose they give it a trial.

Here, as elsewhere, in the South, the military fever is raging to a fearful extent, and truth compels me to admit, that my friend Chootsper, who has usually a very pacific turn of mind, has not been exempt from its ravages; indeed, he is now laboring under an aggravated attack, and his only relief seems to be in the wearing of a marvelously high stock, and a diminutive cone shaped, glazed cap, with plenty of front. He also affects a very erect carriage, "catches step" when walking with anyone (which he loses again, about every two minutes), and has acquired a voice, remarkable for huskiness, and consequent adaptability to word of command upon the battle field.—Confidentially, he has informed me, that he has produced this enviable effect, by sleeping with damp cloths around his neck.—He has been very successful in organizing the Sholem Guards, of which he holds the responsible office of Brevet 4th Corporal, and intends concentrating into a Battalion the celebrated Schnorrer Volunteers, Tokef Cadets and Mashumet Rifles, and as the "post of honor is the post of danger," the latter corps will, in the most handsome and disinterested manner, be tendered that position.

It has become customary, to present the most favored companies with stands of colors, and one evening last week, I made one of a large audience assembled in the Schwatsonian Institution, to witness the ceremonial. The Guards were the recipient, and Chootsper the Orator of the evening, and it was terrible to listen to the pledges he made in behalf of himself and valiant comrades; what a tepid bath they would take in each others' blood; how they would gladly convert themselves into an impromptu and un-Patented pavement, to be rode over by the enemy (whoever that is), before they would allow a feather to be ruffled of their silk emblazoned Eagle, which, by the way, seemed to me, to be in the last throes of what the medical profession, I believe, call the Bunyach; however, every one (except the Eagle) seemed delighted, and I feel prouder than ever, of my friend. But since then I have had reason to doubt his entire sincerity, and this was how it happened:—an unlooked for order had been issued for the assemblage of the troops, and rumor was quite positive the long expected foe had come at last—I called upon C. to offer my services to attend to any worldly affairs he may have neglected, but to my surprise, I found him bandaging up his right arm to the dimensions of a well-to-do infant, and enjoying the performance amazingly. I was about taunting his for his cowardice—for the ruse he was playing was but too palpable—when he anticipated me with such cogent reasons, and with all so plausible, for the greater service he would render his beloved country by not becoming food for powder, that I was disposed to humor the joke, and even looked serious when he offered his excuse to his commanding officer, and regretted his inability to follow his pet Eagle in the path to victory.

Upon more particular inquiry, I learn that sickness was rife among members that day, and there has been a perceptible diminution in esprit du corps ever since that memorable order "to be prepared at a moment's notice."

Under the fostering care of our worthy Hazan, the Rev. Mr. Weil, I am pleased to note a desirable improvement in the attendance and behavior at Synagogue the past holidays. I hope the Congregation will soon find a more suitable building to worship in.


Washington, D.C., April 7th, 1861.

Letters of "Semi Occasional"