Of Col. Johnson, the career was short and brilliant. The Legion arrived in the night, and in a few hours after, almost unfit for service, it was thrown into the very thickest of the fight, and Col. Johnson fell, with Col. Hampton, on the spot upon which their columns had been planted. I sent the casualties of Col. Kershaw's regiment by telegraph to-day; but those of the other regiments, so scattered as they are, and in weather so exceedingly unsuitable to travelling as it has been, I have not yet been able to obtain. President Davis left the army this morning in the cars for Richmond. Though the Chief Magistrate of a great republic at the most salient period of its greatness, were arrogated no special privilege, he took his seat with others in an overcrowded car; and in that, and in every other instance of his intercourse with his fellow-citizens here, he exhibited but the appearance and bearing of a well-bred gentleman, as he unquestionably is.
army of the Potomac, camp Pickens, Wednesday, July 24.The great battle at Stone Bridge has been the theme for days, but still is not exhausted. It stirred our hearts so deeply that they cannot take the current of another thought. Nor is it necessary. The military event of this age, and the event upon which hung suspended the private feeling and the public interests of the South, it is scarcely to be thought of that I should offer, or you should ask, the reason why I dwell upon it. In writing yesterday, I endeavored to present that at one time the fortunes of the day were doubtful — hung suspended on a thread — and that by Beauregard's order, the victorious advance of the Second and Eighth Carolina regiments, with Kemper's battery from the centre at 2 o'clock, after several fierce struggles determined fortune in our favor. At 3 o'clock, too, Gen. Smith, leaving the railroad cars, formed his four regiments and marched against the enemy on the extreme left wing, driving them before him. I hesitate to dwell, however, upon certain incidents which, however apparently established, were yet contested, or seemed to be so, and I was unwilling to commit myself to statements until I had made every reasonable effort to obtain the truth. The first of these was the taking of a battery by Hampton's Legion. Your readers will now have had some faint conception of the battle-ground. It occurred, they will remember, on the turnpike road from Centreville to Warrenton, just after it crosses Bull Run, on the Stone Bridge. The road at this point pursues its path between two ridges or ascending slopes, the summits of which are near a mile apart. The woodland for near a mile has been all cleared away, and it was upon this splendid theatre, and all in full view, were made those constant movements to outflank each other, upon which fate depended. The enemy having made the detour by Sudley's Ford to get upon our flank, of which I spoke first, broke the cover of the trees which crowned the eminence on which we rested, by planting a battery of rifled cannon. Gen. Evans met it the best he could by planting his two guns, the one to the right and the other to the left of his position, and advanced under such cover as they gave to meet the enemy. He could not permanently check them, however; they drove him back across the road, and with him his pieces of artillery. One was disabled; but the others, under Lieut. Davidson, of Latham's battery, took position in the road, and with almost unexampled intrepidity continued to play upon the enemy advancing up the road, into which they had entered lower down, until they were already rising the eminence upon which he stood. Before that, however, Capt. Imboden, with his battery, from Staunton, had been placed within about one hundred yards of the road, and had opened a most galling fire. Gens. Bee and Bartow, and Hampton's Legion, rallied to sustain him. The fight was bloody, but nearer to the road, in position to rake their entire line, the enemy had planted another battery. Fresh columns were thrown from the eminence beyond, across the field upon the road. Our gallant men were forced back by the pressure of these overwhelming numbers. They crossed the road and planted two batteries, the one Rickett's and the other a section of Sherman's, it is supposed, upon our side, but about two hundred yards off from Imboden's, to rake the hill with grape and canister. From these, even, Imboden's was compelled to fall back, which he did, and carried off his guns, when it seemed impossible that any human power could save him. To take these batteries, so established upon our side, or to quit the field, was then the only option left us. Of these the one, Rickett's, of four guns, was beyond a little house owned and occupied by a man named Henry, and the other to the right of it and lower down the hill. Against the first of these it was that Bee and Bartow fought and fell, and at length, at fearful sacrifice of life, the men and horses were shot down and the guns were silenced, but the other still kept on. No single movement could be made below the brow of the hill against the turning columns of the enemy until this was taken, and against that the legion, as a forlorn hope, was led. In their first charge they had advanced to Henry's house, and were passing through the garden, when Col. Hampton was shot down. Without his further orders they were confused. Thus, Lieut.-Col. Johnson had fallen, and Capt. Conner, of the Washington Light Infantry, senior captain, led them back to form them; retiring under cover of the hill, they found the Seventeenth Virginia regiment, Col. Withers, and through Adjutant Barker, proposed that he should join them, which he did. They formed their line of battle; Capt. Conner led the legion. They tore down upon the enemy through a storm of balls. They reserved their fire until within a certain distance of the