previous next

Correspondence of the Richmond Dispatch.

departure of troops from Suffolk — Eloquent
address, &c.

Suffolk, Va., May 1, 1861.
Everything is still moving. For the past week our town has been a rendezvous for troops, and crowds of eager fellows have bustled among us. The Sussex Light Dragoons, Capt. Belsch, 80 men, well mounted and armed; the Isle of Wight Rifles, Capt.--79 men, armed with the celebrated "Enfield," and the Smithfield Artillery, 75 men, Capt. Chalmers, with two pieces of ordnance and ammunition, have all been quartered here, which, together with our two town companies, numbering about 75 men each, made up a battalion of near 400 as fine looking soldiers as Virginia will send to the field. This morning, about 1½ o'clock, the deep notes of the bass drum were heard through our streets, to which the soldiers were solemnly marching to the depot of the Norfolk and Petersburg Railroad--orders and a special train having arrived for them to report in Norfolk immediately; the occasion being that several U. S. men of war had suddenly appeared in Hampton Roads, and by soundings near the shore, and other significant acts, indicated their purpose to land their miserable hirelings upon the sacred soil of Virginia,--Though the time for the departure of the troops was a sad one, yet it was heartily welcomed by all, for our soldiers were panting for the fray, and we all feel that the Suffolk boys will do their duty. A large crowd of ladies and gentlemen, and affectionate servants, were present to see them off, and the following address, reported from memory, was made to the soldiers drawn into line by the minister of the Episcopal Church:

‘ "Soldiers! the time for action has probably come. Be cool; be confident; be determined.--If it indeed be true that you are to be brought into actual conflict with the enemy, we know that your every heart responds, Let it come! Let it come! and we feel satisfied that every man of you goes prepared to do or die. You go, baptized with woman's tears and panoplied all over with woman's prayers; and oh, how safer than steel is such an armor!

’ "Soldiers!--

'But bear the memory of your homes about you in the fight;

'Twill breathe upon the avenging sword a spell of keener weight.'

We fight for our wives and families, our rights and our dearest liberties; and not until the last drop of blood has been shed by the last man will the South ever be subdued under Abraham Lincoln and his miserable Administration.

‘"In the name of this whole community, I bid you an affectionate adieu. We will bear you in our hearts at the Throne of Grace, and we will call down Heaven's blessing to be upon you, and Heaven's protection to be round about you. And may the blessing of God Almighty, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, come upon you and remain with you always."’

At the conclusion of the address, the soldiers filed into the cars, and in about an hour after their call, were on their way to vindicate Southern rights. And there were heart pangs; but they found no other expression but in fervent prayers. No, our wives and daughters willingly lay their all upon the altar of freedom, and trust in the God of Battles to defend the right. They are still working night and day to supply fatigue shirts and uniforms for the several new companies that are waiting for arms.

The Home Guard are now upon parade, numbering 100 strong, under Capt. Flynn.


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)
hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Abraham Lincoln (1)
Flynn (1)
Chalmers (1)
Belsch (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
May 1st, 1861 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: