The Zouaves reconnoitering.
--The Petersburg Express publishes the following statement furnished by a gentleman just from Bethel Church:
Monday morning early, four of the New Orleans Zouaves
left camp without leave, and directed their steps towards Newport News, alleging as a reason that they desired to reconnoiter the fortifications at that place.
Some five or six hours after their departure, one of the Zouaves returned to camp at Bethel
, in a somewhat exhausted condition, and exhibited a bloody bowie-knife of appalling dimensions.
He represents that his party extended their advance to within a mile and a half of Newport News, when they found themselves suddenly surrounded by a Yankee scouting party, numbering some twenty or thirty.
They determined to cut their way out if possible, and being armed with nothing but bowie knives
, went to work with a will.
But one escaped, the other three having been taken prisoners.
The one who returned declares that several of the Yankees
were killer by himself and friends.
His own assertion is all the evidence we have, but we give the story as he relates it.