where I had bee for a couple of hours turning stragglers and parties of regiments upon this place and Alexandria, I received intelligence that the rear guard, under Colonel Richardson, had left Fairfax Court-House and was getting along well. Had not been attacked. i am now trying to get matters a little organized move here.
E. D. TOWNSEND.
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT NORTHEASTERN VIRGINIA,
Arlington, Va., August 4, 1861.
COLONEL: I have the honor to submit the following report of the battle of the 21st of July, near Manassas, Va. It has been delayed till this time from the inability of the subordinate commanders tog et earlier a true account of the state of their commands.
In my communication to you of the 20th ultimo, I stated it as my intention to move that afternoon and drive the enemy from the east side of Bull Run, so as to enable the engineers to make a sufficiently accurate reconnaissance to justify our future movements. Later int he day they had obtained enough information of the passages across the stream to dispense with this reconnaissance, and it was decided to move without further delay.
It had been my intention to move the several columns out on the road a few miles on the evening of the 20th, so that they would have a shorter march in the morning; but I deferred to those who had the greatest distance to go, and who preferred starting early in the morning and making but one move.
On the evening of the 20th ultimo my command was mostly at or near Centreville. The enemy was at or near Manassas, distant from Centreville about seven miles to the southwest. Centreville is a village of a few houses, mostly ont he west side of a ridge running nearly north and south. The road from Centreville to Manassas Junction runs along this ridge,e and crossed Bull Run about three miles from the former place. The Warrenton turnpike, which runs nearly east and west, goes over this ridge through the village, and crosses Bull Run about four miles from it, Bull Run having a course between the crossings from northwest to southeast.
The First Division (Tyler's) was stationed as follows: One brigade on the north side of the Warrenton turnpike and on the eastern slope of the Centreville ridge; two brigades on the same road and a mile and a half in advance to the west of the ridge; and one brigade on the road from Centreville to Manassas where it crosses Bull Run at Blackburn's Ford, where General Tyler had the engagement of the 28th ultimo.
The Second Division (Hunter's) was on the Warrenton turnpike, one mile east of Centreville.
The Third Division (Heintzelman's) was on a road known as the old Braddock road, which comes into Centreville from the southeast about a mile and a half from the village.
The Fifth Division (Mile's) was on the same road with the Third Division, and between it and Centreville.
A map, which is herewith, marked A,* will show these positions better than I describe them.
Friday night a train of subsistence arrived, and on Saturday its
*To appear in Atlas.