Mr. Hovey to Mr. Seward.
Sir: From intelligence received from a perfectly reliable source, I am enabled to inform you that President Prado is pushing rapidly his preparations for the reduction of the rebellious city of Arequipa; several of the large guns are already in position, and the final and decisive attack upon the enemy may be looked for shortly. I am informed by the same person, an American, that, having penetrated into the city, he easily discerned the discontent and want of confidence existing among the revolutionary chiefs. It is apparently President Prado’s plan to reduce the city by a severe bombardment, thus causing the effects of war to be felt, not only by the soldiers, but by the non-combatants who instigated the present rebellion.
In the northern portion of the republic, Colonel Balta, commanding the insurgents, has gained an unimportant success in the capture of the city of Cajamarca; but on the receipt of this intelligence in Lima, orders were given for the concentration of all the government forces in that section, and the minister of war, Colonel Cornejo, has put himself at their head. This officer, who has the reputation of an able soldier, will [Page 840] immediately commence active operations with his troops, and should an encounter take place between Balta and himself, the probabilities of success are greatly in favor of the government party.
The almost unanimous opinion in the country leans towards the triumph of Colonel Prado.
I have the honor to be, with great respect, your obedient servant,
Hon. William H. Seward, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.