ASHLAND, May 30, 1864.
Prisoners just taken from skirmishers from Sixth Corps say they were last night at the Court-House and this morning moved by the left flank as skirmishers over the road parallel to the railroad. The Sixth Corps was passing yesterday when they advanced as skirmishers down the road toward Peake's Station. They were covering the movement. I am now near Hanover Court-House.
BRADLEY T. JOHNSON,
ASHLAND, [May] 30, 1864.
The enemy's cavalry are in front beyond Doctor Price's. I don't know what force.
BRADLEY T. JOHNSON,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF RICHMOND,
May 30, 1864.
COLONEL: Yesterday my pickets captured a correspondent of New York World near Tunstall's Station. The letters found on him all indicate that White House is to be their base and that W. F. Smith was supposed to be there when the letters were written. Our pickets left White House yesterday afternoon. No signs of enemy there. Grant is to try to dig into town. Many of Grant's men gone home. They have drawn the heavy artillery from Washington and use them as infantry. All report terrible losses, but think McClellan's old plan will now succeed. One letter says:
I hope Grant's strategy will do some good now that he has destroyed so many men butting against breast-works. The Sixth Corps started with 30,000; now has 12,000.
They evidently expect Smith, from Butler's force, to join at the White House. All the letters were written at headquarters First Division, Sixth Army Corps. Show this to General Bragg.
R. RANSOM, Jr.,
HANCOCK'S HOUSE, May 30, 1864--10.35 a. m.
General BRAXTON BRAGG,
Following report from Fort Boykin, lower James River, of yesterday afternoon just received here from Major Milligan, Signal Corps:
Seventeen transports have gone down to-day, estimated carrying at least 7,000 men--three with cavalry and artillery and two barges with wagons. Following have gone up, light or with freight: Three steamers, one propeller, one barge, and one hospital boat.