Editor’s Note: This article was transcribed by Jackie Martin.
THE NEWS FROM PETERSBURG.
We make up from the Petersburg papers of yesterday the following summary:
OPERATIONS DURING SATURDAY AND SUNDAY.
There was very little of interest transpiring on Saturday and Sunday. Saturday was so extremely hot and dusty, that even the usual sharpshooting and picket firing were indulged in to a very limited extent.
About eleven o’clock Saturday night there was a sharp fire of musketry on the centre of our lines.
Sunday, like Saturday, was very warm, and our men suffered greatly in the trenches, being without shade along a greater portion of the lines, and on account of the watchfulness of sharpshooters, unable to raise their heads above the breastworks to get even what little air there was. There was one consolation mingled with the many disagreeable features of our situation, and that was, that the enemy suffered equally from like causes with ourselves. In the evening the sky became overcast with cloud, and there was a slight sprinkle of rain. This was the first fall which has visited that section for nearly a month, and it was most gladly welcomed by all.
There was heavy cannonading on our centre on Sunday about eleven o’clock, and for awhile the impression prevailed among our citizens that a fight was brewing. But the firing was discontinued in less than thirty minutes, and matters remained unusually quiet during the balance of the day.
The breastworks of the two armies are now only about three hundred yards apart.
The Southern railroad is still inoperative, the enemy being within the vicinity of the Six Mile house in large force. But this does not place the city nor General Lee’s army in a state of siege.—We are still in communication with many portions of the South, and can stand such a siege as Grant thinks he has established for twenty years to come.
FROM THE YANKEE RAIDERS.
The latest intelligence the Petersburg papers have from the raiders was up to Friday night, when they were scattered from Green Bay to the Meherrin. The latter locality is about six miles from Burkeville junction, and the former a station on the Danville road, distant ten miles from the junction.
Our cavalry who went in pursuit labored under serious disadvantage. The raiders, having the start, stole all the fresh horses they could find, while our men were compelled to do the best they could with the horses upon which they started.—Our forces, by great exertion, succeeded in reaching a portion of the Vandals near Nottoway Court House on Thursday, and immediately gave them battle. A hot fight ensued, which was continued from two o’clock until dark, when night closed the contest. The enemy was severely punished and retreated under the cover of darkness. We killed and wounded a large number of the enemy, if prisoners taken are to be believed, and captured thirty four, all of whom have been received in Petersburg.
Captain Graham commanded, and the fight occurred at the cut in the Southside railroad, four miles this side of Nottoway Court House. Colonel Anderson of the Second North Carolina cavalry, was killed. The enemy, we hear, made diligent search for Thomas H. Campbell, Esq, the Receiver for this District, who resides near the Court House, but failed to find him.
The raiders stole a large quantity of bacon on their route. One of their wagons was filled to overflowing, and a gentleman residing in the vicinity of Ford’s depot picked up fourteen hams after the vandals passed, which had jostled out.
The enemy kill all the horses which give out from exhaustion. A gentleman states that the entire route of the enemy is strewed with dead horses. They have also abolished the practice of shooting the poor animals, but cut their throats.—All are found with ghastly gashes, severing the jugular vein.
HOW PERSONS ALONG THE ROUT WERE TREATED BY THE RAIDERS.
A couple of ladies, (Mrs. Armstrong and daughter,) who resided some seven miles from Petersburg, reached there Saturday. These ladies left their desolated home on Friday morning, and were compelled to make a circuit of twenty-five miles to get within our lines. They walked every foot of the way, and between the heat and dust, were well nigh exhausted. They represent that a large body of the enemy visited their house on Thursday, stole every dust of meal, every pound of bacon, and every fowl on the plantation. They even took a pipe out of the mouth of an aged negro woman, and seemed to enjoy a smoke from it with high satisfaction. They state that the people of Prince George have been stripped of every thing, and must starve unless aid can be secured from some quarter. The invaders established a cattle pen in that section, and squads went out daily in every direction, bringing with them cows, oxen and calves.
A SOLDIER BECOMES DISGUSTED WITH THE YANKEES AND COMES OVER TO OUR SIDE.
Mrs. Armstrong and daughter (mentioned above) acknowledge their indebtedness to a member of the Yankee cavalry, who upon visiting their house, and seeing their total destitute condition, kindly brought them a middling of bacon and some bread. He also guided them around the Yankee lines and into ours, and then surrendered his horse and revolver to our pickets, having resolved to leave the company of such Vandals as he unfortunately found himself associated with. This man reached Petersburg Saturday afternoon, and was turned over to the Provost Marshal by the ladies he had befriended. He says he is willing to take the oath of allegience to the Confederate Government, and will gladly join our army, if he can be assigned to duty at a point where he will not be likely to encounter his late associates in arms. He says he has served in the English army, and was in all the Crimean campaigns.1
- “The News from Petersburg.” Richmond Examiner. June 28, 1864, p. 2 col. 4-5 ↩