From the Charleston Mercury, 5/16/1863

TELEGRAPHIC NEWS.
IMPORTANT FROM MISSISSIPPI.

Rumors were rife in the city last night that the expected advance of GRANT’S forces into Mississippi had taken place, and that the city of Jackson had been occupied by the enemy. From what we can learn, we fear that this report is correct; although we have no intelligence that any serious battle has been fought.

Gen. JOSEPH E. JOHNSTON should have reached Jackson, Mississippi on last Wednesday night with his staff. Jackson is the headquarters of Gen. PEMBERTON. Within the next week a great battle will probably be fought. With JOHNSTON and a fine large army, we may look for news. NEWS FROM RICHMOND AND THE NORTH.

RICHMOND, May 15. Two finishing shops of the Tredegar Iron Works, and CRENSHAW’S woolen factory, were destroyed by fire this morning. The loss is heavy.

Northern dates of the 12th have been received. A meeting of sympathizers with VALLANDIGHAM took place in New York on the 11th. JAMES BROOKS, of the Express, denounced the arrest as an act of tyranny unequalled in the history of the world. He said that New York and New Jersey were the only States in which freedom still existed.

Gold in New York has declined to 148 @ 149.

Later. CRENSHAW’S woolen factory was totally destroyed.

The loss is estimated at $250,000, and the property was insured for $171,000 in Richmond, Lynchburg, Danville, Charleston, Georgia, Alabama and Florida Insurance Companies. The origin of the fire is thought to have been the friction of the machinery in the picking room. The damage to the Tredegar Works was serious, but it is supposed that it can be repaired within six weeks or two months.

FROM THE WEST.

TULLAHOMA, May 15. All is quiet in front.

The Louisville Democrat, of the 10th instant, contains a despatch from Murfreesboro, stating that 3,000 contrabands had been organized into companies of thirty each, and that Tennesseans were to be placed in command of the black companies.

GRANT telegraphs HALLECK that he had captured Port Gibson and 500 rebels. The rebel forces had been badly repulsed. GRANT reported his losses at 200 killed and wounded. He also states that Col. GRIERSON’S cavalry had scoured the whole of Mississippi en route to Baton Rouge, spreading excitement throughout the State, destroying railroads and trestlework, burning the bridges, locomotives and railroad stock, taking prisoners, and destroying stores of all kinds.

New York dates of the 9th report that HOOKER’S losses in the late battles were over 15,000 men. Cotton was quoted at 65 cents.