We continue to make extracts from letters received at this office. To publish our correspondence entire would fill up the paper, to the exclusion of everything else.
Christiansburg, Montgomery county,
Our volunteer company, called the "Montgomery Fencibles," commenced gathering in early last week for drill duty, and on last Sabbath night there was a very imposing scene at the Presbyterian Church.
Appropriate addresses were delivered by Rev. M. Edwards, of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and Rev. Mr. Stuart, of the Presbyterian Church, and a presentation of a copy of the New Testament to each volunteer.
On Monday there was a large gathering of the people, when a beautiful flag was thrown to the breeze, drawn up by the tender and delicate hands of some of our young ladies.
A subscription paper was handed around, and about $10,000 raised, for arming and equipping the volunteers, and for other purposes.
The most perfect order and unanimity prevailed, and I never witnessed such a degree of enthusiasm
On Tuesday evening a large crowd gathered at our depot, to see the Western volunteers pass, it having been reported that a train would go down the Virginia and Tennessee Railroad at 5 o'clock P. M., with about 700 volunteers.
The train arrived with the three companies from Smyth, Wythe, and Pulaski.
Just as the train arrived, the Blacksburg volunteers reached the depot, and the car was made to resound with the shoutings of the assembled multitude.
The company from Pulaski was detained by order of Gen. Preston; and that company, together with the Blacksburg volunteers, led by our company, marched up to our little village, where every house was thrown open for their accommodation, and no pains were spared to make their situation comfortable.
On Wednesday they were engaged most of the time in drilling.
Just at night they were marched to the Presbyterian Church, and after singing and reading appropriate parts of Scripture and prayer, were affectionately commended to the care and keeping of the God of Battles--Rev. Messrs. Edwards, Miller and Stuart participating in these services.
They were then marched to our depot, where there was a special train in waiting for them, where they were met by between 200 and 300 persons of all ages, colors, and descriptions.
At 9½ o'clock the whistle gave the signal for starting, and the three companies referred to, under the command of their gallant leaders, Cols. Trigg and Preston, went off amid the shouts of the assembly.
There were many tearful eyes and sad hearts in our village on that day — husbands parting with wives, parents with children, and brothers with sisters — yet they were given up cheerfully, believing that our cause is a just and righteous one; and may the God of justice throw a pillow of cloud by day and a pillow of fire by night around them.
Montgomery county, although small, has sent off three companies of volunteers — the fourth is nearly completed, and, I understand, a fifth is in progress.
And such is the enthusiasm and patriotism in our community, that a company of young ladies could be raised in a few days who are anxious and willing to go to nurse the sick and bind up the wounds, and some of them say they would fight, too.
April 25, 1861.
Clover depot, Va., April 25, 1861.A barbecue was given by the citizens of this place on Wednesday, the 24th inst., for the purpose of raising a volunteer company.--About 12 o'clock M., the people assembled at the Baptist Church for the purpose of organizing, electing officers, &c. The meeting was called to order, and the object of the same explained by B. F. Garrett, Esq., and opened with prayer by the Rev. Jno. T. Clark. The following officers were unanimously elected: Dr. Jno. C. Coleman, Captain; Capt. A. Frank Rice, 1st Lieutenant; Capt. Thomas Watkins, 2d do.; Jno. M. Cole, 1st Sergeant; W. Richard Paris, 2d do.; Jas. B. Carden, 3d do.; Geo. M. Moon, 4th do.; Silas R. Bostick, 1st Corporal; J. J. Cole, 2d do.; Thomas L. Roberts, 3d do.; John L. Burnes, 4th do. Sixty brave and patriotic sons of the South responded to the call, and no doubt our company will number one hundred in a few days. Our Captain leaves for Richmond to-day, for the purpose of procuring arms and uniforms. Our company is now anxiously awaiting a call, and will no doubt gladly respond.
Washington College, Va., April 24th.It is a historical fact that the students of Washington College, (then Liberty Hall Academy,) in 1776, marched, with Rev. Wm. Graham at their head, to Rockfish Gap, in order to keep back Tarleton from invading West Virginia, and now they are as ready to keep back Lincoln and his hirelings from invading the soil of Virginia. To-day we organized a volunteer company, called "Liberty Hall Volunteers." The company numbers 60 men. Prof. Alex. L. Nelson (Professor of Mathematics) was elected Captain; Prof. J. J. White, 1st Lieutenant; John N. Lyle, of Christiansburg, Va., 2d Lieutenant, and Lewis Summers, (son of Hon. G. W. Summers,) 3d Lieutenant. A large and beautiful flag of the Southern Confederacy now floats over the College, and rallying under that flag the students, with Capt. Nelson to lead them, are ready to march to victory or to death! Washington College has furnished our country with some prominent men; among many others are the following, viz: Our excellent Governor, John Letcher; Ex-Gov. McDowell; Hon. John J. Crittenden, of Ky., and Hon. G. W. Summers.
Sweet Springs, Va., April 24, 1861.Yesterday evening, about 4 o'clock, a flag of Southern Independence, made and presented by the ladies of this place, was hoisted, and is now waving aloft. As it went up, it was greeted and cheered by the patriotic ladies, who were present in a goodly number. God bless those patriotic ladies, and may they have the satisfaction of seeing the proud and noble principles represented by the flag they have presented upheld by their husbands, sons, and lovers.
Affairs at the Navy-Yard.A correspondent of the Petersburg Express writes: ‘ At the Navy-Yard the preparations for war are in full blast. Every hour discloses to us new occasion for gratitude, on account of the frustration of the malicious purposes of our enemies by a kind Providence. The Plymouth will be gotten into the dock to-day, and will soon be ready for service. The falling of the large shears on the Germantown — intended for her utter destruction — did her much less damage than was feared, while by carrying a way her masts and rigging, it saved her from ruin by conflagration; they have already commenced raising her. The Merrimac is probably more injured; but it is believed that she may still be turned to good account, Besides, she has 30,000 pounds of powder in her magazine, which, although under water, is yet so secure by being enclosed in copper receivers, that there is no danger of its being damaged. Her battery of five guns--one of the best in the world — was gotten up yesterday and removed to Sewall's Point, where it was remounted behind a strong breast-work, and will eloquently respond to any attempt of a Hostile ship to pass through the Roads. When a similar battery shall be planted on Lambert's Point — which will be effected in a few days — the Navy of the Northern myrmidons will be effectually backed down to the protecting beach of Fortress Monroe. ’ The magnificent howitzer battery of the Germantown, consisting of ten guns, was also raised yesterday and sent to Richmond on board the steamer Northampton. This will fully enable our sister city to give another welcome to the New York Seventh Regiment, or to any other friends who may challenge their respects. The shot, shell and other ammunition which were thrown into the river by the vandal hordes before their flight, are also being raised in large quantities. And it is gratifying to learn that — contrary to our first impressions and belief — in their haste and fright they actually left several hundred guns in a remote part of the Yard unsplit.
Richmond,) received their call "to arms" with great joy; and were ready to start early the next morning. The Marion Visitor says: ‘ Some time before the special train was due at our depot they took up their line of march for that place, attended by a large concourse of our citizens, eager to testify their love and admiration for that gallant little band, who had bravely taken their lives in their hands and were willing to spend and be spent in the service of their country. When the procession reached the depot we witnessed such a scene as we never witnessed before. There were fathers and mothers who had come to bid farewell with their children, brothers and sisters who had come to bid farewell with their brothers, and wives who had come to part with their husbands. In looking upon this scene, we saw strong men, ‘"who were unused to melting the mood," ’ weeping like little children. ’ Other volunteer companies are organizing in Smyth, and will soon be ready to follow the gallant Blues to the scene of action.
The Grayson "dare Devils."The Lynchburg Republican, of Friday last, has the following: ‘ The Grayson "Dare Devils," after taking their seats in the cars, yesterday afternoon, preparatory to leaving for Richmond, were directed, through a telegram from the Secretary of the Commonwealth, to return home, as they were not provided with arms. The "Devils" at the time were edifying the crowd present with patriotic speeches from different members, and were enjoying themselves finely at the prospect of speedily taking Old Abe's scalp; but when the dispatch was read to them a deep gloom spread over the entire company, and many a stalwart fellow was seen to shed tears profusely at the sore disappointment. The sympathy of the vast crowd was, however, immediately enlisted in their behalf, and as they had come thus far by order of one of the aids of the Governor, it was determined by several gentlemen present that they should go on, at private expense, and several dispatches were sent to the Governor earnestly requesting him to accept of the services of the mountain boys, even though they were unarmed. A vote of the company was then taken, when they unanimously decided to take the chances of getting into service, and again taking their places in the cars they soon moved off amid the most immense cheering, and with the well wishes of all present, It is to be hoped that the "Devils" will be cordially received and armed on reaching Richmond, for the State cannot well dispense with the services of so determined and brave a cor. ’
A Virginia mother.The following letter was written by Mrs. Ann Catron, of Washington county, to her son, who promptly enrolled himself in the Mounted Rifles: ‘ "The time has come. Will you go? Now you can decide. The next dispatch will be you must go. Your country calls; will you respond now? With trembling hand but unfaltering heart I address you this note, firmly relying upon Him who sways the destiny of nations;--He is able to defend you. With all the timidity due to my sex, I am ready to offer you up in defence of your country's rights and honor; and I now offer you, a beardless boy of 17 summers,--not with grief, but thanking God that I have a son to offer. May God be with you." ’
Mecklenburg. It will be seen by the following that the soldiers there respond with alacrity to the call of their country: ‘ The three companies of Mecklenburg volunteers have been anxiously awaiting orders to march for several days. They expect to receive orders before we go to press this week. The Clarksville Blues, Capt. Finley, have been receiving constant accessions to their ranks, and their number is almost complete. The Boydton Cavalry, Capt. Goode, has also received large accessions, and will scarcely be able to accommodate all who apply for admission. The Chambliss Light Infantry, Capt. Baskerville, will also have a full complement of men, if the ranks are not already full.--And all will respond promptly to the Governor. ’
Lynchburg patriotism.It would seem that there is no limit to the patriotism of the citizens of Lynchburg. In addition to the many instances of liberality heretofore noticed, the Republican notices the fact that John A. Liggatt, Esq., on the arrival of the Smyth Blues, 72 strong, and the Wythe Grays, 76 strong, quartered them at the Piedmont House, and incurred all the expense incident thereto, amounting to near one hundred dollars.
Virginia are exemplifying in this instance. And proud are we to say it, old Augusta leads the van. That liberality which always follows a consciousness of right has been exhibited in remarkable degree. Horses have been given with a freedom as though they were grasshoppers, money subscribed, transportation tendered in a manner truly astonishing. It is worthy the days of the Revolution. ’ Capt. in Asher W. Harman has now nearly equipped his fine company of Mounted Riflemen, numbering about 100 men. This will be one of the finest in the State, and it opportunity presents, laurels will be won; for the dashing, intrepid, fearless character of the captain will always lead to where the conflict is fiercest.
Military in Fredericksburg.The Fredericksburg Herald, of Saturday, says: ‘ There has never been so great an array of soldiery in old Fredericksburg as at this time. Their numbers, the alacrity with which they spring to every order, and their fine carriage and military bearing, would cause Old Abe's knees to smite together like unto Belshazzer's, could he obtain a glance. ’ They come from the mountains, the glens and the valleys, with rushing cheer, and woe to the foe which meets them on the field. Their admirable discipline, their proficiency in drill, and the zeal with which they spring to every command, tells more powerfully than pen can portray that they are alive to the exigencies of the times. The Dragoons, from Caroline, are really splendid in appearance. Captain Cary's command, that of Captain Wise, and indeed all, without exception, are of an order to make the military eye sparkle with delight. The main encampment is on the Fair Grounds, but Old Abe's cohorts will find a few of the same sort at other points. The ladies of the town, in large numbers, have been at work all the week in the Presbyterian Church, in preparation peculiar to their line of duty.
Commonwealth. The Valley Sentinel says: ‘ The Fincastle Rifles, Capt. Thompson, 80 strong — as brave-hearted boys as ever burnt powder — the first to organize in the county — the first to enter the service of the State--left Fincastle on Tuesday, to rendezvous at Boncack's, in obedience to the orders of General Preston. Yes, left Fincastle, and left not a dry eye nor a tearless cheek behind them.--They left as we would have them leave, not with a senseless smile or self conceited smirk upon their visages, but with minds made up, ready to do and to dare, and if needs be die, in behalf of their proud old mother. ’ Botetourt and Craig will probably send a regiment of brave volunteers into the field.