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[8] examine the lines, the position of the enemy, the effects of the fire and discuss the situation. Then, the same length of time to return to General Polk and confer with him. Then it would require the same length of time to go in quest of General Johnston, report to him, and explain the situation of affairs minutely, then to return to General Polk and report it to him; then to come to my line a second time, return to General Polk. These two trips to my line and one to General Johnston would have occupied one hour and a half. Next, Major West received instructions to go and examine the line, and as there was no firing, he could form no opinion, but only talk with me. Then he went back to General Polk and made his report; thence, he too, was ordered to go in quest of General Johnston, and found him somewhere; reported to him and returned. This would have required about one hour. So the line from Polk's to my extreme right was ridden over six times, examined and discussed, and four times from General Polk's to where General Johnston was, consuming not less than two hours and a half. Captain Morris was not yet at General Polk's quarters when Major West went in quest of General Johnston, but he found he had arrived when he returned from General Johnston.

Now, it is plain, if my alleged report to General Polk put all this in motion, it must have been received by him at half past 1 o'clock P. M., because we know it terminated soon after the arrival of Captain Morris at Polk's quarters at 4 o'clock P. M. Soon after this Captain Morris was ordered down to examine the line, which he did, and we have his report.

The question of time may be determined in another way: If I sent a report to General Polk, it was carried a mile and a half to him by courier. Next, consider Colonel Sevier and Major West in the light of one person; that person must have traveled about thirteen miles, received seven separate sets of instructions from Generals Polk and Johnston, made five carefully matured reports on the situation, and what was said by me and General Johnston, and made at least two careful examinations of our line; noted the position of the enemy, watched the firing and noted the effect of the same, and it could not physically have been performed under two hours and a half; and yet your published article says it was all performed during the interval between receiving my report and the departure of Morris to make his survey, which was about 4 P. M.

If I made a report, as stated, it was done after the firing commenced,

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Leonidas Polk (11)
Joseph E. Johnston (8)
W. J. Morris (4)
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Sevier (1)
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