From Camp Pickens.
[special Correspondence of the Dispatch.]
Camp Pickens, July 15, 1861.
Your invaluable sheet that metes out to our keen appetites its store of news, deserves some return, however simple the offering.
Each one almost regards it as a letter from mother, wife, sister or sweetheart, barring this, that when we are done reading it we lend it out.
It is very hard to give you news, such as papers usually abound with — no railroad accidents, domestic infelicities, and trials before the Mayor
The most we have to change the monotony of camp life, is to listen out for the guns of our enemies, and even this does not last long in its effects.
Nothing positively but marching orders and absolute contact with a superior force of our enemies would be regarded as fun. We don't now leave a hard biscuit or stop in the middle of a yarn to look at a batch of prisoners passing.
We often wonder how Richmond
looks, and are tempted to think our friends have not only forgotten us, but the great work in which we are engaged.
It is to be hoped they have not been lured into that miserable Yankee infatuation of staying at home to ‘"make the most"’ out of this war. There are many, we know, who ought to be in the field, who are as much bound to make sacrifices for their country as those who have gone; and as for the hordes of Yankees that are now reaping their harvest, and chiefly off the poor soldiers, there is no extenuation for them.
Indeed, I think it would be well to require of them an enlistment of three years as the only satisfactory probation for a citizenship in the South
Why are they patronized?
Can't any of our old Virginians
cultivate a winning smile and a kind manner to entitle them to the confidence of their fellow-citizens?
Suppose they try.
I see the militia are called out. Some have reported here, and the first duty they had to perform was to take hold of spades and the like and throw up entrenchments.
It is good for them.
Why don't they join some of the numerous companies of the First Regiment at Manassas
There are four companies at least that have not their entire complement of men. Captains Boggs
, and others would be glad to swell their numbers, and brave men, we would think, would not hesitate to join these rather than militia companies.
Our men are looking finely, and will give a good account of themselves when called for. Our officers are of the right stamp, from Gen. Beauregard