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under the protection of his gunboats, from the effects of disastrous defeats. The battle, beginning on the afternoon of June twenty-sixth, above Mechanicsville, continued until the night of July first, with only such intervals as were necessary to pursue and overtake the flying foe. His strong intrenchments and obstinate resistance were overcome, and our army swept resistlessly down the north side of the Chickahominy until it reached the rear of the enemy, and broke his communication with York River, capturing or causing the destruction of many valuable stores, and, by the decisive battle of Friday, forcing the enemy from his line of powerful fortifications on the south side of the Chickahominy, and driving him to a precipitate retreat. Our victorious army pursued as rapidly as the obstructions placed by the enemy in his rear would permit, three times overtaking his flying columns, and as often driving him with slaughter from the field, leaving his numerous dead and wounded in our ha
ectually, that when the enemy marched up the Peninsula, their progress was suddenly arrested by a long line of powerful fortifications belting the country, from York River to James River, and completely stopping further invasion. 'Tis true, that McClellan's force was well handled, and fox the most part lay before Yorktown before ught the Yankee lines. Following the example of Butler, Magruder set the contrabands to work on his chain of fortifications, extending from Yorktown (on the York River) south-westwardly along the banks of the shallow Warwick to Mulberry Point, on the James River — a distance of about nine miles. The distance from Yorktown to tcDowell at Fredericksburgh, in order to move on Richmond from the north; fleets of gunboats and transports at the same time passing the extremities of our wings on York and James rivers, to throw strong forces on our flanks and rear. This was all seen by every intelligent soldier in the army, and the general expression was: These
ntice the foe into open ground, so that he might soundly thrash them on the morrow. The retreat of the main army continued as if nothing had happened; and as our flank was threatened by a force which had been hurried with great despatch up the York River, Hood's Texan brigade was double quicked to West-Point to oppose the movement. While our brigade bivouacked west of the town waiting for orders, I could not help laughing at the wo-begone features of some of our men, who, supposed to be siccaissons, numbers of dead horses, and scores of infantry. The morning after Williamsburgh, I, with others, was detailed to escort a batch of prisoners to Richmond, and in hurrying on I overtook troops marching to West-Point, the head of the York River; rumors being rife that Franklin and other Federal generals were disembarking a large force there to assail us on the flank. The main army, however, had travelled with such celerity, that they were beyond the line of West-Point, so that the Te
nd is situated at what may be considered the head of the Yorktown peninsula. On the south side the peninsula is washed by the James River; on the north, by the York River, to within seventy miles of the capital. The York River is continued by its tributary the Pamunkey River, which approaches within a few miles of the capital. York River is continued by its tributary the Pamunkey River, which approaches within a few miles of the capital. At the foot of the peninsula, where the James flows into Chesapeake Bay, are Newport News and Hampton Roads. So much for the general geography of the Richmond peninsula, as shown on ordinary maps. The approaching battle-fields may be represented by an imaginary square, the sides of which indicate the four quarters. At the bo. Our loss from all causes was great, but not a tenth of this number. The transports of the enemy brought immense supplies of every kind up to the head of the York River, (West-Point,) and depots were numerous up the Pamunkey, being easily supplied thence to the army by excellent roads, and the York River railroad, which Johnsto
on our right, and felt convinced he,possessed but few and unimportant depots on the James River, or the Chickahominy; but had established communication with the York River to his right and rear, as being safer to navigate, some considerable distance nearer to his Headquarters, and affording greater facility of transportation by th The Brook Church, or Hanover Court-House turnpike, (leading from Richmond to Hanover Court-House, the White House on the Pamunkey River, and West-Point on the York River,) was McClellan's right, situated in a fine, open, undulating country, highly cultivated and picturesque. This turnpike was the extreme left of our lines, and k Court-house roads. He appeared much fatigued and overworked, and would have served admirably for a picture of Dick Turpin when chased by officers on the road to York. His horse was a splendid black, with heavy reins and bit, cavalry-saddle, and holsters; foam stood in a lather upon him, and he was mud-splashed from head to hoo
ow swampy lands, behind his left centre and left. But now that he has his whole force on the south bank, and has lost all communication with his depots on the York River, will he, in desperation, taking advantage of the presence of our heavy forces on the north bank, concentrate and hurl his entire strength against our right, anHill had taken Mechanicsville, and Jackson's advance through the country had cut off the Federal communication with their depots on the Pamunkey and the head of York River, Stuart had been ordered to advance rapidly and secure whatever was possible ere the enemy had time to destroy it. On Thursday, therefore, he moved down the Braes and escaped. Proceeding through the country, every Federal establishment was visited, large or small, and every thing of value appropriated. At the head of York River much United States property was taken, and wagon-loads destroyed for want of transportation; but among the most singular discoveries made, was that of great qua