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Skirmishing — spirit and health of the army, &c.

Fairfax C. H., Sept. 8, 1861.
We have had a week or ten days of excitement here, owing to the incessant fighting between the pickets of the two armies, now in such close proximity. Since the taking of Munson's and Mason's Hills there has been one incessant skirmish, the most serious of which occurred on Wednesday morning last, between two companies of the Maryland regiment, both under command of Captain Goldsborough, some three or four miles from Alexandria, in which seven of the Federals were left dead upon the ground, Capt. Goldsborough, I understand, had none seriously injured. His success was complete, having driven the enemy from a strong position — the miserable vandals in their retreat destroying a quantity of hay, to keep it from falling into the hands of our troops.

It is impossible to say how long this condition of things will last. Every one here has confidence in our leaders, and every one is satisfied all is going right. The troops are impatient to begin, it is true, and often, very often, do you hear the expression, ‘"if they would only let us go,"’ escape them, and at every camp-rumor of an intended move, you will see faces brightening up and a nervous anxiety to move on, that cannot be much longer restrained.

The health of the various regiments is good, taking all things into consideration, and every precaution should be taken against the changeable weather incident to this season of the year. Warm clothing is indispensable, and the ladies (God bless them) have, through their untiring industry, made many a poor soldier comfortable. Woolen under-clothing must always be worn. A soldier never sleeps with his clothing off, and he is subject to duty day and night, rain and shine; and often have I seen the poor fellows, when exhausted by a long march, throw themselves upon the soaking wet ground, wrapped up in their single blanket, and sleep as soundly as they had ever done in their comfortable beds at home. But all is borne cheerfully — no complaining, no dissatisfaction — for all know that their honor, liberties and homes are at stake, and regard their lives but a poor sacrifice. R.

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Goldsborough (2)
Munson (1)
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September 8th, 1861 AD (1)
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