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Propose evacuation of Petersburg.

--The Petersburg papers of Saturday published a rumor that at one time since the present campaign opened Gen. Bragg gave orders for the evacuation of that city. The Express of yesterday publishes the following official contradiction of the rumor:

Headq'rs Department,
Richmond, May 26, 1864.
Gen Braxton Bragg, Richmond:
To-day I heard a report coming from Petersburg, to the effect that you had ordered the evacuation of that place when it was threatened a few weeks since by the enemy. I at once flatly contradicted the report, and stated what were the facts — that to my knowledge every effort was made by you to hold it, and to keep open communication with the city.

Haygood's brigade, which had been ordered to Drewry's Bluff, was sent to Port Walthall Junction, and Johnson's brigade, of my command, was hurried to the same point, to hold the railroad and cover Petersburg from attack. The most positive orders were given, and being constantly with you, and conferring about the defences of both this city and Petersburg, you can appreciate my surprise at hearing the report above alluded to, when I had heard orders sent which had an eye single to the defence of Petersburg and keeping open communication between there and the Army of Northern Virginia. Whence have emanated these groundless rumors, I am at a loss to know. Certainly, either from the imagination of those wholly ignorant of the facts, or else from those, who, fro malice, wish to injure men who have faithfully served our country and watched its best interests. If it should become necessary to refute falsehood, you can use this as you may see fit.

Very respectfully.
Your obedient servant.
(Signed) R Ranson, Jr.
Major General.

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Drewry's Bluff (Virginia, United States) (1)
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