[Correspondence of the Richmond Dispatch.]
We have very little news from Tennessee
The last accounts since the capture of the Yankees
in the skirmish at Limestone place our forces still in that neighborhood, as it was not deemed prudent to make a further advance after the capture.
As you were advised last evening by telegraph, the enemy are either attempting to get to the Virginia and Tennessee Railroad, in the vicinity of Smythe county
and other points, or are making feints in that direction to draw attention from other points.
From all we can learn, the impression is that they are really in earnest, to cut off communication on this road This opinion is sustained from their manner of operating, together with the advantages they would gain by tapping this road.
They send out small detachments, who attempt to reach the road during the night; the party mentions in the telegram in yesterday's paper as being captured being one of the squads which were sent out for this purpose.
It is said that they would have eluded the military who were in search of them had it not been for a patriotic old lady who piloted our forces to their whereabouts in the mountains.
Our men came upon them while they were preparing breakfast; and not withstanding the fact that the enemy were only armed with navy shooters, they showed fight and wounded a militiaman severely in the thigh, at a distance of one hundred and seventy five yards.
The number now reported in Abb's Valley, Tazewell county
, is estimated from 5,000 to 7,000, though I am inclined to the belief that this is an exaggeration.
The militia are wide awake in the Southwestern
counties, and will do efficient service in keeping off these raiders.
It is said that on last Sunday every man and boy who could raise a shot gun and an old squirrel rifle was out on the scout.
Local affairs in this city are quiet.
In a military point of view, we are getting to be pretty well organized, and have regular drills every Friday afternoon, our citizen soldiery turning out well, though some cases of "dodging around" may be noted.
These cases are, however, generally brought up by a squad next day, who are detailed for that purpose.
On last Friday the organization of the militia was completed by election of officers to fill the vacancies in two of the companies belonging to the city battalion.
The election resulted in the choice of William McCreary
; P. Haynes
, 1st Lieut.
, and W. A. Ford
, 2d Lieut.
, in company B.
In company C, Pettigrew
and Maj. C. V. Wintree
as commander of the battalion.
To-day the officers drill, and next Friday has been set apart for battalion drill.
In the counties roundabout here the organization of companies goes on very slow, it being a hard matter to get the men together.
This difficulty will, however, be obviated if the Legislature will pass some law requiring regular drills in the counties as well as in the cities, or if the Governor
will issue a proclamation requiring it.
I expect to leave in the morning for Southwestern Virginia
or Jonesboro', Tennessee
, from whence you may next hear-from me.
The seventeen Yankees captured near Marion
arrived here this evening. O. K.