the War News — heavy skirmishing along the lines — capture of prisoners — the raid upon Ashland, &c.
Although two contending armies lie confronting each other within a few miles of Richmond — so near, indeed, that the booming of the guns is daily heard — our people await with calmness the result of the gigantic struggle, placing fall confidence in our noble leader and the heroic army under his command. There is no undue excitement, and no check is blanched with fear. So far all goes on favorably, and there are few who extrinsic any doubt of the final result.
From Gen Lee's army.The following dispatch from Gen. Lee was received at the War Department yesterday.
June 1st, 1864, P. M.
Honorable Secretary of War:
B. E. Lee, Gen.
The skirmishing along the lines is represented to have been very heavy, particularly at a late hour in the evening. The severest fighting was about nightfall, in the vicinity of Calnes' Mill, at which point the enemy, by massing their troops, forced back Clingtman's brigade and gained a temporary success; but reinforcements coming up, the enemy were repulsed with considerable loss in killed, wounded and prisoners. Among the incidents of the day related to us is the following: Four companies of a Wisconsin regiment, picked men, volunteered to charge a portion of our breastworks. Our men reserved their fire until they got within a few yards of the works, when they opened upon them a deadly volley, killing or wounding the whole. It is said that not one got back to tell the tale to his comrades. Heavy skirmishing commenced about an hour before sundown to the left of our centre, and continued until 10 o'clock, at night. The enemy advanced boldly to their work, but were finally repulsed and driven back some three quarters of a mile. In the fight near Gained's Mill the Fayette Artillery of this city was engaged. The Yankees made four separate charges upon their battery, but were each time repulsed. It was in the third charge that Lieut. Peyton Johnston, Jr., son of Peyton Johnston, Esq., of Richmond, was struck in the breast by a Minie ball and almost instantly killed. He was a deserving young officer, highly popular with his command, and much esteemed by all who knew him. This, we learn, was the only casualty sustained by the battery. We regret to hear a report of the death of Colonel Lawrence M. Keltt, of the 20th South Carolina regiment, from a wound received on Wednesday. There is a faint hope that this is erroneous, but from the source whence it comes we have reason to fear it is too trust. Colonel Keith was a member of the old Congress, and one of the most popular citizens of South Carolina. His heart and soul were enlisted in the cause of Southern independence, for which he has at length given up his life. General Lee's dispatch confirms the report we published yesterday, that the advance of Batler's troops had reached Tunstall's Station, on the York River Railroad. It was reported last evening that they had got as far as Dispatch Station, thirteen miles from Richmond.
[from our own correspondent.]
Near Mechanicville, June 2, 4 P. M. 1864.
A demonstration at Bottom's Bridge.The following official dispatches were received at Gen. Ransom's headquarters last night:
4.20, P. M.
Major T. O. Chestney:
5:10, P. M.
Major T. O. Chestney:
The raid upon Ashland.The Yankee cavalry force which advanced upon Ashland on Wednesday, was first met near Hanover C. H, by a portion of Gen. Fits Lee's troops, and skirmishing at once commenced, Our men gradually fell back before the enemy's division (commanded by Wilson) until they reached Ashland, and retired a short distance beyond that point.--The Yankees halted, and at once commenced their work of destruction by burning the water tanks and one or two hand care belonging to the railroad company; but before they had an opportunity to accomplish more General Rosser approached by the Half Sink road, and at once engaged them. The fight raged furiously for some two hours, when the enemy gave way, and were pursued some three miles, when they again made a stand, but were soon put to rout, and driven beyond Wickham's farm, when night put an end to the contest. The Yankees left their dead and wounded behind them. A considerable amount of spoils was captured, including three hundred horses and thirty pack, miles. The mules were laden with ten days rations, showing that it was contemplated to have extended the raid far beyond Ashland — probably to the canal and the Danville Railroad. It is reported that the enemy burnt the South Anna bridge, two miles above Ashland. This structure is (or was) 60 feet in length and 70 feet in height. It has once before been destroyed by raiders. Only four bars of the railroad track were torn up, and the Yankees, in their haste to get away, left their handspikes behind.--While at Ashland they endeavored to entice off the negroes employed by the railroad company, but they refused to go. The Yankees revenged themselves by stealing their provisions and clothing. The pickets told these negroes that they intended to return and destroy the place.
Good News from the Southside.The following dispatch from Gen. Beauregard was received at Gen. Bragg's head quarters last night:
To Gen Braxton Bragg:
From Gen. Johnston's army.In the following official dispatch, received yesterday, Gen. Johnston gives a cheering account of the condition of, and the advantages gained by, his army:
To Gen. Bragg: