[special Correspodence of the Dispatch.]
The idea which from boyhood I had entertained of Bowling Green
pictured it as a most lovely village of shade and refreshing verdure.
The very name was suggestive of moonlight, meditation, music, and flowers.
The time of year which finds me here and the warlike aspect the town now bears unite to disappoint the realization of my early fancies.
It is is true, the place is pleasantly situated in a beautiful and bountiful portion of Kentucky
, and the grass on the broad, surrounding fields even now sufficient for grazing; but who thinks of Bowling Green
except as the military key of the Mississippi Valley
Before that key is turned and that gorgeons valley stained by the foot of the vandals the tall grass and the rosy flowerets of spring will be woven in luxuriant wreaths for Southern herces.
I find military men in some perplexity to appreciate the remarkable manœuvres of General Buell
He has just completed, at great cost to his Government, the bridge across Green river
From four to eight regiments are thrown over each day and made to re-cross at night.
What the Federal General
means by this marching and counter-marching seems doubtful.
The most rational interpretation appears to be to accustom his affrighted soldiery to the presence of our forces and to gradually bring them up to the ‘"sticking point;"’ in other words, to inspire them with courage by degrees.
doubtless anticipates defeat with as much certainty as ourselves; hence every strategy is resorted to in order to keep up appearances and the spirits of his troops — hence his long delay in making the attack, and his silly imitation of the King
with forty thousand men. When his advance will occur nobody here can pretend to predict.
All that can be said is that whenever he chooses to practice the motto ‘"On to nashville,"’ he will be met by a competent force and overwhelmed with disaster.
Wherever one goes about Bowling Green
, he meets with the soldiers of the Confederacy
As I came into the town at night, the camp-fires could be seen for miles in every direction.
For thirty miles east, west and north the inevitable tents of the brave volunteers are pitched.
The army under General Johnston
is so disposed as to be most convenient to fire-wood and army supplies, and most readily mobilized in case of emergency, It may well be supposed that a great deal of skill and military genius was necessary to the perfection of these varied arrangements.
When I visit the fortifications and the outposts I shall be able to present some facts, which, while I do not intend they shall be useful to the public enemy, may gratify the general wish on the part of Virginians
for accurate information touching military operations before Bowling Green
Having just gotten here, I shall content myself with a reference to the Virginia
troops under General Floyd
His brigade is encamped about three miles West of Bowling Green
, and seems ready to measure swords with the foe. Although this gallant command has performed much arduous service, its sanitary condition is good, and the General
deserves the thanks of the country for his daring campaign in Western Virginia
The theatre of his operations there was so beset with difficulties, both moral and physical, that he was denied a fair field against the enemy and it was but an act of justice on the part of Government to send him to an arena where those encumbrances would not be encountered.
The Fifty-Sixth Virginia.
Regiment has been assigned for the present to his command, and it is quite probable that this arrangement, will be permanent.
Its encampment is situated three hundred yards from the General
's headquarters, and presents a military and comfortable appearance.
The Virginia troops at Bowling Green
fully realize the responsibility of their present position.
They feel that the honor of their good old mother is entrusted to them, and while litting her ‘"bonny blue flag"’ on the soil of her oldest daughter they will strike right manfully for the inalienable rights of both.
When they are ordered to occupy the advance, as soon they probably will be, they will meet the enemy with the spirit of Virginians
, and illustrate by deeds of prond daring ‘"the noblest motto that ever blazed on a warrior's shield"’--Sic; Semper Tyrannis.
P. B. I have just learned that forty of the enemy's pickets have been captured by Hindman
's advance guard, and they have arrived at Bowling Green
Information has reached me also that Dr. R. B. Patterson
, quarter master
of the 56th, has been offered the commend of an artillery company.
The regiment will protest against his acceptance.
His services are indispensable, and the members of the regiment, individually and collectively, like him as a brother.
I hazard nothing in saying that a more efficient officer and a more courious and excellent gentleman cannot be found in the service.
Probably he may decline the post to which he has been invited in deference to the wishes of the 56th.
It is to be hoped that such may be his determination, since the resignation of his present position would deprive us of one of our brightest lights.