From ‘Kappa,’ the correspondent of the Cincinnati Commercial
, we have the following letter, dated at Corinth, Mississippi
, May 30th, 1862:1
. . . On the day the second division moved out, advances, with heavy cannonading, were made by Thomas and Pope on the left, but not a response in kind was elicited from the enemy.
During that night we could hear teams being driven off and boxes being nailed in the rebel, camp.
Deserters, however, I understand, reported that they were making a stand and would fight the next day. Considerable cannonading was done by our forces, and yet no response, and yesterday the same.
Last night the same band sounded retreat, tattoo, and taps all along the rebel lines, moving from place to place, and this morning suspicion was ripened into certainty when we saw dense volumes of smoke arise in the direction of Corinth, and heard the report of an exploding magazine.
Corinth was evacuated, and Beauregard had achieved another triumph.
I do not know how the matter strikes abler military men, but I think we have been fooled, etc.
, in his ‘History of the Army of the Cumberland,’2
speaks of General Halleck
's superior numbers at Corinth
, and of his gradual approaches, step by step, to his objective.
He also describes several heavy skirmishes and other sharp fighting, by strong lines of the contending forces, in which the Federals
, he adds, were not always the aggressors.
Referring afterwards to the evacuation, he says:
This seeming boldness in aggression was only a feint to cover the retreat of General Beauregard's whole army from Corinth. . . . The explosions at Corinth, early in the morning of May 30th, revealed General Beauregard's purpose and its accomplishment.
For several days he had been sending off his munitions and stores, and during the night of the 29th he had so quietly and secretly withdrawn his army that his own pickets did not know that they had been left a sacrifice for the safety of their comrades.
It is surprising that General Force
, whose fairness of appreciation we have noticed on several previous occasions, should apparently have founded his version of these events upon the incorrect despatches forwarded by Generals Halleck
Had he sifted the matter with greater care, he would undoubtedly have avoided all mention of the imaginary pursuit by General Pope
's army, first to Rienzi
, then to Baldwin
, then to Blackland