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[478] not one of the most pleasant for contemplation in the present state of affairs.

Capt., Louther's company were now put in command of a bridge near by, while Capt. White was sent across with his as skirmishers in the adjacent woods and fields about. Scarcely had the movement been made, when a negro woman came running down with the intelligence that the rebel troops were advancing rapidly toward them from Temperanceville, about five miles further inland. The alarm, she said, had spread, and all the country around was aroused. Not many minutes after the crack of rifles upon Capt. White's pickets announced the presence of the rebels. Our men quickly collected together, and commenced firing in return. The enemy were scattered about firing with rifles from behind the fences and haystacks, or under cover of the woods around the open field where our troops had formed. As soon as Capt. White's men were in rank, he marched them out under the open fire and directly toward the locality whence the shots came thickest, loading and firing as they went. Four of the enemy had been killed, when they were gathered up by the rebels, who fled precipitately. One squad, numbering about fifteen, was chased at least half a mile, and our men were pressing on intending to pursue them to Temperanceville, when Capt. Crosby overtook them with the order, “Make the best of your way back to the fort as soon as possible!” Not one of our men had been even wounded. The charge that had been made by them was a splendid one, and not a single soldier of ours showed any thing but bravery. The credit of the affair belongs to Capt. White and his company, and to Lieut. Ryan, who rushed on bravely at the head of about fourteen of the Naval Brigade. Lieut. Ryan had a Sharpe's rifle, and with it shot one of the rebels down deliberately. The Federal troops took a number of muskets, caps, pieces of uniforms, &c., and had it not been for the order to retreat would have captured a large number of prisoners. I may here say that the uniform of Lieut. Crossly is made of coarse Kentucky jeans, green facings, and trimmed with the “sic semper tyrannis” buttons. In the afternoon, after the retreat down Pocomoke River, they took a prize schooner, and early the following morning the fleet started for Cherrystone Creek. Arriving at the wharf at the mouth of the river, they found the schooner Passenger. Her captain is also captain of the Cherrystone Guards, a company of rebel troops who rendezvous in the vicinity. They removed a number of things from the schooner, and then fired her and another lying near. They then placed a picket line along the shore. Scarcely ten minutes afterward a cloud of dust was seen up the road, and then a column of bayonets gleaming in the early sunlight. A moment afterward a ball from a heavy gun came whizzing down the road, and struck in the water a very little distance from them. Lieut. Tillotson, of the Naval Brigade, in charge of our 82-pounder upon one of the launches, then sighted the piece accurately and sent a concussion shell into their very midst. The rebels then scattered into the woods. Our men upon the boats discharged their muskets into the woods, and the pickets having been taken on board, and several shots given from Tillotson's gun, Capt. Crosby again gave the order to retreat and the expedition floated down the river. The Fanny Cadwallader was found some distance below run aground, and all efforts to get her off were for a time unavailing. She was near the shore, and had the enemy known the circumstances, they could not have found a more favorable opportunity for attacking the expedition, and would certainly have sunk the boat aground and scattered the fleet, had they come in season.

In a short time the order was given by Capt. Crosby to throw her coal overboard. Several of the men were detailed for the purpose, and commenced the speedy execution of the order. The Fanny was then attached to the Fanny Cadwallader, and had scarcely succeeded, after much effort, in getting her off, when Capt. White, who was again ashore with pickets, saw movements in the woods and a large white wagon approaching, guarded by several soldiers. The picket fell back to the boats. A few moments afterward a shot from a rebel howitzer was sent whirling toward the launch which bore Tillotson's gun, and a shower of musket and rifle balls fell among the boats. Tillotson answered the fire bravely and effectively. The action continued briskly for about fifteen minutes, the rebels firing from behind a sand battery and the trees. Their aim, however, was much too high and none of their shots scarcely but fell beyond. Some of the rifle balls struck the smoke-stacks of the steamers, and quite a number of bullets marked the upper parts of the boats. Not one of our men, so far as I am able to learn, was injured. The rebels had two howitzers playing mostly on the launch, where Tillotson kept up a heavy fire, finally dismounting one piece, and, for a time, silencing the other. Capt. Crosby gave the order to retreat, and at the same instant the rebels gave Tillotson a shell. He again fired, and the launch commenced the retreat. Again and again he fired in answer to the gun upon shore, as his boat moved off, until at last she was silenced. Tillotson, after the action closed, received three loud, long, and hearty cheers for his bravery, and the expedition then moved off toward the fortress, where it arrived early this morning. The last engagement occurred at about 3 o'clock yesterday afternoon and continued more than half an hour.

The prize schooner taken at Pocomoke River now lays in the harbor. She is a trim-rigged little craft, and it is regretted by our men that she was not as well stored as built.

--N. Y. World, August 7.

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