Today in History:

1055 Series I Volume XLVII-I Serial 98 - Columbia Part I


NEAR BENTONVILLE, iliarch 21, 18657.20 a. rn. We are remaining here to cover the removal of our wounded to the railroad at Smithfield. The enemys intrenched position and greatly snperior number, Shermans army being in our front, make further offensive impracticable. J. E. JOHNSTON. General H. E. LEE. NEAR SMITHFiELD, N. C., illarch 23, 18651.30 p. m. Shermans whole army being intrenched in our front on morning of 20th, we did not attack, bat held our position to cover removal of wounded and occupy enemy. There was heavy skirmishing 20th and 21st, and several partial attacks by him handsomely repulsed. Troops of Tennessee army have fully disproved slanders that have been pub- lished against them. Evening and night of 21st enemy moved toward Goldsborough, where Schofield joined him, and yesteAay we came here. Shermans course cannot be hindered by the small force I have. I can do no more than annoy him. I respectfully suggest that it is no longer a question whether you leave present position; you have only to decide where to meet Sherman. I will be near him. J. E. JOHNSTON. General R. E. LEE. NEAR SMITHFIELD, N. C., March 24, 1865. Your dispatch in cipher just received. Sherman and Schofield have united at Goldsborough the Fourteenth, Fifteenth, Seventeenth, Twentieth, Twenty-third, Twenty-fourth, and Twenty-fifth Corps, making about 60,000. I was compelled to come here to cross Neuse. Prisoners say that Sheridan with his cavalry is expected soon. Should this be true, could you re-enforce Hampton? Sherman ought to cross Roanoke at Weldon. It would be best, I think, to fight on this side. I will keep you mfornmed of his route and progress. He will probably stop at Goldsborough some days. I will impede his march if possible and keep in his front to joili you should you wish to fight Grant first. J. E. JOHNSTON. General H. E. LEE. NEAR SMITHFIELD, March 25, 1865. Not the Twenty-ninth but the Twenty-fifth Corps, said by our scouts to be negroes. The returns of yesterday show our effective infantry to be 13,900. J. E. JOHNSTON. General It. E. LEE. SMITHFIELD, N. C., March 27, 1865. tiENERAL: Your reply to my telegram, reporting the action of the 19th, near Bentonville, makes me apprehend that my brief account may have given an exaggerated idea of our success. I therefore write a more minute one. The reports of our cavalry, received on the morning of the 18th, showed that the Federal army was moving toward Goldsborough. The Right Wing (Fifteenth and Seventeeimthm Corps) by the Fayetteville