[correspondence of the Richmond Dispatch.]
from the Peninsula — re Enlistments — the Old Dominion Dragoons, &c., &c.,
Army of the Peninsula, February 6, 1862.Our roads on the Peninsula, rendered bad by the frequent rains of January, are now almost impassable, except by troopers, I am happy, however, in being able to state that the health of our men has much improved of late, as the closing of one of the Williamsburg hospitals shows. This will be gratifying intelligence to all who have friends in the Peninsular army. The re-enlisting of volunteers goes Bravely on, and you may rent assured that before the present time expires a large number will have enrolled their names. The battle at Somereset, and subsequent retreat of our army there, has, so far from disheartening our troops given an impetus to re-enlisting, and an assurance of future success. Among the many efforts being made of increasing our army, is one down here which will render more effective a valuable arm of our service — that of cavalry. It is in contemplation to raise a squadron, to be composed in part of the ‘"Old Dominion Dragoons,"’ and styled ‘"squadron Old I ominion Dragoons."’ Of Captain Wm. R. Vaughan's success in raising such a squadron, his untiring efforts leave no room for doubt. For we have been thus early informed by the gailant Captain that the required number has been nearly, if not entirely secured. It is also proposed to increase this body to a battalion, and the hope is foundly cherished that Capt. Vaughan, by pushing forward in this effort will succeed in raising a battalion of ‘"mounted men."’ Such an organization, made up principally as it will be of residents of, and those who have been operating in this section, must prove most efficient. It is also intended to have at least one of the companies armed with rifies, and thoroughly trained on foot in the ‘"skirmish drill"’--this to be amounted rifle company. A battalion thus organized, the men thoroughly familiar with the woods and by-pathe, will, by acting beyond the outposts, keep back marauding parties of the enemy, who is even now burning and plundering the property of exited citizens of that section. By keeping the enemy in his entrenchments much will be accomplished. If he should come out in large numbers, then our brave men will have an opportunity of meeting force by force. As a large number are already enlisted in this enterprise, we sincerely trust — indeed, believe — that Captain Vaughan's efforts will secure a battalion of mounted men. We may also say that Capt. Vaughan was born and raised within three miles of Bethel, has practiced medicine in Hampton and surrounding country for twelve years, and is thoroughly acquainted with the lower peninsula. The gailant men of his command have the same advantages Gen. Magruder has repeatedly acknowledged the invaluable aid rendered by the Old Dominion Dragoons; and a battalion composed of like material would be of still greater efficiency. It is greatly desired, for the good of our cause, that the Government will render such aid as will effect the object proposed. I am gratified, Mr. Editor and friend, to inform you of the continued existence of the 15th Virginia Regiment--of their improved health and anxiety to get into a ‘"scrimmage."’ It is true, we are yet in the woods, at Young's Mill, with the wild Varthints thereof; but hope soon to be more actively engaged. Our kind and gallant Colonel, (Thomas P. August,) enjoys the fullest confidence and generous affection of his men. Be assured that where he leads, we will follow. Events of a very interesting character, soon to transpire, may furnish me with material for a future communication of more interest. Curl.