correspondent of the Charleston Courier
, who met Gov. Wise
on his way to the West
, says he was struck with an observation made by that gentleman upon the best mode of dealing with undisciplined volunteers, yet skilled as marksmen, such as he will have chiefly to rely on in his operations.
He said great mischief would result from making them think they could do nothing without drill, when there was no time to drill them thoroughly.
He desired just to get them organized, so as to prevent confusion, and then he would tell them he wanted them always to go where they were told to, and stand fast till they were bidden to move, and that it would make very little difference whether they could shoulder arms according to rule, provided they could shoot at a man and hit him. With a few disciplined soldiers to support them, he will make these mountain men fight to some purpose.
He was talking, also, about the notion which is becoming so common, that a man can do nothing without the modern improved weapons.
And it does seem a pity that people should be falling into this error, however natural.
There is very little really accomplished by shooting with small arms at long range, especially in regular battles; besides that, a man must have had much practice with these weapons in order to do anything with them.
It is cannon that do the work at a distance.
In shooting at short range, and old-fashioned rifle or musket, particularly when a man is only used to that, may be much better than the new-fashioned.
And when it comes to the bayonet, there is nothing that supports it so well as a good heavy musket.
We trust our Kentucky
friends will follow the wise counsels of Gov, Wise
. Surely they need no better weapons to encounter the inmates of Ohio
styes than those with which they stay the nobler game of the forest.
Besides, Louis Napoleon
showed in his Italian campaign that more than ever since the invention of improved small arms, battles are to be decided by artillery and the bayonet.