It is now definitely ascertained that Grant's entire forces have gone the south side of the dames, and his whole efforts are concentrated in an effort to capture the city of Petersburg all hope of carrying Richmond by a direct assault having been abandoned. A cavalry reconnaissances through Charles. City on Friday developed the fact that the of the enemy's forces, consisting of a body of mounted men, crossed the first at Westover that morning and the previous night. This reconnaissances extracted to the month of the Chickahominy, the information acquired, resulted in the capture of some twenty-five from the Yankee army, a great number of whom are said to be lurking about in the woods in that direction. A dispatch from General Lee, dated Friday night, says: ‘ "troops assaulted and carried our hear Bermuda Hundred, with on our part." ’ He was all the official information that and during the whole of Sunday the public clamor for newsre Nothing was known that the enemy near Petersburg an attack all force upon our lines hour on Friday evening, and were and that two or three hundred pro were captured. The enemy, on their desperate attempt to reduce Petersburg, have resorted to the expedient of shelling the city without is moment's warning. This was commended on Thursday, and continued that night and the next day, and, we was progressing on Saturday. On Friday morning a three inch shell struck the house of Mr. Wilcox, on Bolling brook street and falling, passed through the coping of the cellar door, and exploded below without damage. Several tell without during any injury, in the same street, in the neighborhood of the Wayside Hospital. Another entered the second story of the dwelling of Mr. Charles Brown, on Sycamore street, and exploded, but fortunately interring none of the occupants except one who was slightly hurt by a falling Two negro children belonging to Mr. James Hall, in Blaridford, were badly wounded by one of these missiles, which exploded over their bed. Up to last accounts but little damage had been done to the or property in comparison with the shoulder of shells thrown. Our last report closed with an account of the operations of Thursday, which were entirety successful. The prisoners captured on that day included twenty one commission officers, among them Lieut. Col. D. D. Metheary, of the 145th Pennsylvania regiment, who is a second time at prisoner.--The Colonel of his regiment was captured in one of the recent battle. Spotsylvania, and is now living direct retirement at Andersonville. Two handsome stand of colors were taken from the enemy on the same day. On Friday morning, at a very early hour, enemy appeared in heavy three in front of battery 18, which covers the Bixter road, in Prince George, county, and got within twenty or thirty yards of our breastworks before they were discovered. They came rapidly in four lines of battle, leaped over the fortification, and demanded a surrender. This was retired by our men, and a desperate cards to fraud conflict ensued. The enemy look advantage of a small which had left on our right, and our troops, finded themselves asked, retreated in some this supposed, however, that our entire loss in killed, wounded, and missing will not amount to over one hundred. Our men left back to a second line of fortification a short distance in the rear of the best which had been hastily constructed.-- in this assault the battery of the Macon they light Artillery, consisting of four 12 pounder Napoleon guns, was captured. The men of this command fought with great gallantry, and only abandoned their guns after twenty one horses had been shot down. A portion of our lines in this vicinity was held by the both Virginia regiment, Wise's brigade, who handsomely repulsed an attack of the enemy. In this assault Col. P. R. Page, of the 26th, was mortally wounded, and died soon after reaching Petersburg. He was a native of Gloucester county, and a most gallant and popular officer. For some time past Col. Page has been in command of the brigade, Gen. Wise acting as division commander. Heavy skirmishing and occasional cannonading continued along other portions of the lines until 3 o'clock in the afternoon, when an effort was made to carry battery is, located in close proximity to 16. The enemy approached in three lines of battle, but the opposition was of such a stubborn character that the attempt was abandoned after two of three assaults. At 4 o'clock the enemy charged our works on the hill near the New Market Race Course, that were signally repulsed. In this charge the enemy lost heavily, leaving many dead and wounded in our front. After a temporary cessation of hostilities, a heavy cannonade commenced at 6 o'clock on our right, near batteries 17, 18, 19, and 30, at Col Avery's farm, and gradually extended around to our extreme left. By dark the engagement became general along the whole line, a distance of about five miles.--Then, for the first time, the unremitting roll of small arms was distinctly heard from an quarters of Petersburg. The battle raged much nearer the limits of the city than on any previous occasion, but the determined valor of our troops prevailed. The enemy were driven back, and all the ground we last during the day was recovered. Thus the situation was infinitely better at the close than it was in the morning. In a description of this desperate fight, the Express says that as the contestants in the vicinity of the New Market Race Course became engaged, the booming of cannon and the rattle of musketry fell upon the people with a distinctness which aroused the entire city to the highest pitch of excitement, and every street and alley, and all the surrounding hills, were crowded with people, listening with breathless anxiety to hear the result. The moon was high in the heavens, and shone with unusual brilliancy, and the flashes of the big guns and the blaze of musketry, could be seen from the Blandford Church and Bolling Hills with great distinctness. For a half hour the battle raged and roared, and during this time, from the nearness of the sound, many became impressed with the idea that the invaders of our soil were getting the advantage of our troops, but all of a sudden there was one universal blaze of musketry along the entire length of our line, and then fell upon the ears of the listening multitude a shout, from the throats of our brave boys, which none were slow to interpret. It was the shout of victory — a glad and welcome sound. Couriers soon arrived, announcing the joyful tidings that we had repulsed the enemy along the entire line, and occupied the lines which we held at early dawn yesterday. It was now 10 minutes to 10 o'clock, and the firing gradually slackened until 11 o'clock, when it had almost entirely ceased. About 11 o'clock there was a renewal of the musketry firing, and a few discharges of cannon, but it did not last more than fifteen minutes. Our losses in this battle were severe, but were no comparison with that of the enemy, which is represented to have been fearful. A considerable number of our wounded were brought to Richmond yesterday. We regret to announce that the wound of Capt. Fred. Carter, of the Richmond Blues, received on Wednesday, has resulted in his death. His remains were brought to Richmond, and interred yesterday afternoon, after appropriate services at Sycamore church. Capt. Carter succeeded O. Jennings Wise, who fell at Roanoke Island, and has been with his company ever since. He was a gallant and popular officer, and universally esteemed by his acquaintances. Among our officers wounded on Friday were Col. Tabb, of the 59th Virginia, flesh wound in the thigh, and Major J. C. Hill, of the 46th Virginia, right arm shattered. The following is a list of the casualties in the Richmond Light Infantry Blates, Co. A. 46th Virginia regiment, in the battles near Petersburg: Killed: Private E. W. Blackburn. Wounded: Capt. Fred. Carter, mortally, (since dead;) First Lieutenant C. P. Bigger, severely in left shoulder; Second Lieutenant E. J. Levy, flesh wound in leg; Orderly Sergeant Robert J. McDowell, flesh wound in left thigh, Privates Henry Miller, through face and left hand; W. D. Chesterman, flesh wound in thigh; James L. Walkins, slightly in knee; Henry Place, W. W. Rush, (our informant could not learn particulars in regard to either;) James R. Medlicott, slightly in head; W. H. Timberlake, do.; Thomas Payne, flesh wound in arm; Samuel A. Frayser, left side, face and neck. Missing and supposed to be captured: Private John J. Omenhauser. The following is a list of the casualties in Sturdivant's Battery, of Richmond, in the fight of Wednesday: Wounded. Lieut. W. H. Weisiger, in thigh, Lieut. B. H. Gorrell, in two places; Corporal J. S. S. Casler, in neck, slightly; James T. Rippetoe, in the hip, slightly; B. C. Hall, hurt by a wounded horse; Wm. J. Jacobs, slightly by a concussion from a shell; J. D. Carver, wounded and missing. Missing and supposed to be captured: Capt. N. A. Sturdivant; privates J. W. Munday; J. R. Ferguson, Harvey Shepherd, E. A. Thacker and J. E. Drumwright. Two pieces of the battery were captured, and fifteen horses killed and captured. The name of Lieut. Col. J. C. Council, of the 26th Virginia, has been furnished to us on good authority as among the wounded, but the Petersburg papers report him captured by the enemy. Nearly all of the companies of Captains R. H. Spencer, R. M. Page and S. B. Shelton, of the 26th Virginia regiment, were captured at Jordan's farm on the evening of the 15th instant. They only surrendered when surrounded by a force of ten or fifteen times their number. Captains Sutton and Poindexter, of this regiment, were not captured, as re-ported. The slaughter of the enemy in front of Hoke's division, on Friday, is represented to have been terrible.
Saturday's operations near Petersburg.Reports of all sorts were in circulation yesterday in regard to the situation of affairs at Petersburg, The public mind at length settled down into the conviction that a great battle was fought on Saturday, but nothing to sustain this belief could be obtained in official quarters. It was even stated that the enemy penetrated the streets of the city, at which critical period reinforcements fortunately arrived, routed the Yankees, and drove them four miles with terrible slaughter. Rumor went so far as to assert also that Grant had sent a flag of truce to Gen. Beauregard, demanding a surrender of Petersburg, to which that officer declined to accede; that then Grant threatened to shell the city; to which Beauregard replied that nobody understood the rules of war better than General Grant, and that they required twenty-four hours notice, in order that the women and children might find a place of safety; and, finally, that if Grant undertook the shelling without such notice, he would execute a Yankee prisoner for every non-combatant injured. These stories served to furnish a theme for street gossip during the day, but they happened to lack one important element, namely, that of truth. A gentleman who left Petersburg yesterday morning at 6 o'clock says that no general engagement took place on Saturday.--The enemy made several demonstration during the day on different portions of our lines, but were in every instance repulsed with loss. In the evening the Yankees advanced in several lines of battle in front of Elliott's brigade, and when they were within four hundred yards our troops opened upon them with grape and canister, mowing down hundreds at every discharge. Artillery duelling was kept up at intervals during the day, but our casualties were few. The enemy's losses on the Southside thus far have been very heavy, while ours are comparatively light. Our informant states that he heard an estimate at Beauregard's headquarters on Saturday night that 1,000 would cover our total casualties in killed and wounded since the fighting commenced in front of Petersburg. While this is probably somewhat below the mark, it completely dissipates one of the rumors so industriously circulated yesterday. A good many of the Yankee negro troops have been slain, while among the prisoners are some Indians, belonging to the 1st Minnesota sharpshooters. Persons who left Petersburg yesterday at 12 o'clock report that all was comparatively quiet up to that hour. The shelling of the city continued on Saturday, and one of the missiles dropped into the Bollingbrook Hotel, exploding in room No. 7, but fortunately injuring no one. It is reported that the hospital camp on Poplar Lawn was shelled, causing a removal of our sick and wounded from that point. A shell exploded among a drove of cattle on the Lawn, and covered the animals with dust, but they quietly shook themselves and walked off uninjured. The prisoners captured state that Grant recently made a speech to his troops, in which he told them that if he could not capture Richmond no man could do it; and the great butcher is said to have sworn that he intended to take Petersburg if he lost every man in his army. Present indications point to such a conclusion, without the accomplishment of his purpose. Grant thought he had out generaled Lee, and would take up his position in front of Petersburg before that commander was aware of his intentions; but General Lee was too smart for him in this instance, as in every other since the opening of the campaign. The situation at Petersburg is now highly favorable, and we learn that the military authorities are much encouraged at the prospects.
A Sunday rumor.It was currently reported yesterday that our troops had fired into and sunk three transports, with all on board, near Bermuda Hundred. The rumor, like a great many other Sunday rumors, lacks confirmation.
The enemy repulsed at Lynchburg.It was reported yesterday that the enemy on Saturday evening commenced shelling Lynchburg, and that a brigade went out and Lynchburg, and that a brigade went out and repulsed them, capturing 100 prisoners and the four pieces of artillery with which they were practicing. A gentleman who arrived last evening from Lynchburg says that the fight took place two and a half miles from the city, and that the enemy were routed and retreated in the direction of Salem.--The following official dispatch, which we obtained from the Adjutant General's office at 9 o'clock last night confirms the good news.
Hon. Secretary of War.