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[314] troopers returned, with the cannon, and joined the van again.

Our party consisted of Hons. Schuyler Colfax, E. B. Washburn, Messrs. Dixon of New Jersey, Judge McKeon of New York, and two or three reporters for the press. Mr. Russell of the London Times, and Mr. Raymond of the N. Y. Times, were also together, with another party. Hundreds of persons arrived in Washington on Tuesday and Wednesday, who came expressly to see the battle. The hotels were packed full of human beings — the National alone turning away over four hundred guests, whom they could not lodge, for the crowd.

A few Union people lingered behind in the village, who were greatly relieved, so they said, to see our army coming. In a few places along the road from Ball's Crossing to Fairfax, trees had been thrown down, but our hosts soon cleared the way of these impediments, and there was no further obstruction to the triumphant entree of the division of the United States army under Gen. McDowell, into the place about which so much has latterly been written and said.

Two or three random shots were fired from the woods as we approached the village, wounding an officer and two privates, but not seriously. These shots were discharged by rebels who were mounted, and who fled before they could be reached.

The so-called “fortifications” of the enemy at Fairfax are about as much like those erected by Corcoran's Irish Regiment at Arlington, and those built at Fort Ellsworth by the New York Zouaves, as a peach is like a mule's head! They are entirely fabulous, comparatively, and are of no account whatever. If such be the character of all the rebel intrenchments, they will occasion us little trouble. Guards of our troops were promptly stationed around the town, and especially about the “Court House,” of which you have heard so much. The two Rhode Island Regiments, with James's rifled cannon batteries, the New Hampshire Second, the New York Seventy-first, and Eighth, five or six companies of regulars, and two other regiments took possession of Fairfax. General Bonham of South Carolina commanded the retiring rebel force.

It was General McDowell's intention to follow the enemy up, at midnight, but the boys were so much fatigued with the sharp march of the day that it was deferred till this morning. It is ardently hoped that the rascals will make a stand at Manassas, where Beauregard is now in command, with some forty odd thousand men, it is said. But it is greatly feared they will run again. The rebels have got the idea, evidently, that the Zouaves, and the Gari-baldians, and Blenker's German Rifles, and DeKalb's sharpshooters, are so many “devils in human shape,” and they will be disinclined to withstand a charge from these troops. If Beauregard does not give us battle at Manassas, his army will be thus thoroughly demoralized, and he is beaten, past a ray of hope.

From Fairfax our brave army moves toward Manassas, and thence — we hope, without delay — to Richmond! The fever's up, and our bold troops ask only to be led, and listen earnestly for the thrilling order--“forward!” They remember that

God, and our good cause fight on our side;
Their wives will welcome home the conquerors.

There will be no yielding, no parley, no compromises now. The march is onward, and the willing hosts who have thus taken their lives in their hands for liberty, the Constitution, and the laws, will halt no more, it is believed, until the back of this unholy rebellion is effectually broken. They meet the issue manfully, cheer fully, boldly, and their watchwords now are--

God and the Right I
Richmond, and Victory!

Yours, &c.,

G. P. R.

New York Herald narratives.

Washington, July 17, 1861.
The advance of the whole corps d'armee constituting the column under the command of Brigadier-General McDowell has thus far proved a triumphant march. All that was expected or hoped to be accomplished to-day was done, and almost without the firing of a gun. The rebels have fled from their intrenchments, and Fairfax Court House, the late Headquarters of General M. S. Bonham, of South Carolina, is in our possession. The Alabama and the South Carolina brigades, and a whole body of rebels in that neighborhood — variously estimated at from ten to fifteen thousand strong — took to their heels, and failed to offer any serious opposition to the advancing Union army. The success of the movement was complete.

The order had been given for the several divisions to make the attack upon the intrenched lines of the rebels at about the same time--one o'clock P. M.--and promptly, at one o'clock P. M., all the enemy's works in the neighborhood of Fairfax Court House were in our possession. The advance was made by four different routes leading towards Fairfax Court House and directly to Centreville. The right wing, composed of the First division, four brigades, under the command of General Tyler, of Connecticut, proceeded by the Georgetown turnpike. The centre, composed of the Second division, two brigades, under Colonel Hunter, United States Army, proceeded by the Leesburg or Centreville road. The left wing was composed of the Third division, three brigades, under Colonel S. P. Heintzelman, United States Army; and the Fifth division, two brigades, under Colonel Dixon S. Miles, United States Army. The Fifth division proceeded by the old Braddock road, and the Third by the Little River turnpike. The Fourth division, under General Runyon, of New Jersey, constituted the reserve. There were in the whole column sixty-two regiments — about fifty-five thousand men — and in the marching divisions an aggregate of forty-five thousand.

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