have been used for housing carts or wagons.
Sixteen feet or more from the ground and thence to the gables, there were beams or stringers crossing at different stages; these in turn at each stage were themselves crossed at right angles by rods or poles, designed to hold the little shooks of tobacco that were laid astride them.
Whether a climb among the upper beams would reveal any of this useful article was immediately tested, and soon more bunches of clean, dark yellow, pure leaf than many of us had ever seen before were brought down, and eventually wrought into cigars and twists.
It was on the afternoon of the second or third day that the guns of a Confederate earthwork or small fort, plainly visible on the opposite ridge, began to play upon us, throwing shot over our guns to the lower ground, where were our shelters and baggage.
The detachments were immediately called to their guns, which were loaded, and the compliments of our friends returned.
The aiming of our guns, and the firing, were under the direction of Lieut.
There was a lively interchange of civilities for a half hour.
The shots from the other side, for the most part, passed over us, striking the ground in the rear.
We saw two of the shots sent by our guns, when aimed by the lieutenant commanding
, fall, as it appeared to us, pat, within the Confederate
At all events, after the shots in question from our side, there was silence on the other.
We were ordered to cease firing.
On Sunday, June 8, on the ridge across the river, to the east of the earthwork, there was a continued movement of Confederate troops along and over the ridge, which attracted the attention of the Federal
troops which occupied a position on a hill east of the Mechanicsville Bridge road.
We saw a crowd of Federal officers and soldiers watching from this hill the singular spectacle across the swamp.
What was the significance of it, we never knew.
It did not immediately result in any change of position on our part.
It has been conjectured that this was a part of an ostentatious movement of troops, designed to convey the idea that Jackson
was to be reinforced in the valley; while really Gen. Lee
was contemplating the withdrawal of that army to augment the already large force which, drawn from the seaboard and elsewhere in Virginia
, he concentrated, with Johnson
's army for a nucleus, in front of Richmond