West Point. I have heard casually that you have caused the Pamunkey to be obstructed; if so, it is unfortunate that I was not apprised of the fact.
The enemy occupied a large and dense wood in front of their landing place in the afternoon of the 6th, and was dislodged in very handsome style yesterday by Brigadier-General Whiting with a portion of his division, the brigades of Brigadier-General Hood and Colonel Hampton. These officers gave additional evidence of their high merit. I therefore earnestly repeat my recommendations that Brigadier-General Whiting, who has commanded a division, and Colonel Hampton, who has commanded a brigade, for six months, may be promoted to corresponding rank. The service will gain greatly by these promotions.
As the department of Richmond is not under my command, I can give no orders in regard to works for its defense. I sent, however, several hundred negroes from the Peninsula to help in their construction, and desired Captain Tucker, C. S. Navy, to remove the guns at Mulberry Point and Jamestown for the defense of the obstructions to navigation which I am told are in course of construction.
Major Stevens, C. S. Engineers, now in Richmond, might be usefully employed in directing these works and disposing of the guns.
I shall be found for the present on the New Kent Court-House road. The impossibility of subsisting the army in the neighborhood and the supposed position of an army of ours near Fredericksburg render it impracticable to wait to oppose a landing opposite to West Point.
We may be supplied with provisions hereafter by the York River Railroad at the station on the northeast side of the Chickahominy.
Most respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. E. JOHNSTON,
HEADQUARTERS, Richmond, Va., May 8, 1862.
General JOSEPH E. JOHNSTON,
Your letter of the 8th has just been received. Those to which you allude as having received yesterday were prepared for my signature and being unexpectedly called away, and not wishing to detain the messenger, I directed Major Taylor to affix my signature and send to you. The one referring to the telegram of General Loring was merely intended to advise you of the progress of the evacuation of Norfolk and what had been done to maintain the posts guarding the communication to that place until the evacuation was completed, and which was supposed to be in accordance with your general instructions on the subject. Nothing was done to interrupt the portion of General Colston's brigade joining him. I consider your authority to extend over the troops on both sides of James River, and have transmitted as rapidly as I could all the orders sent to me. I do not recollect your having requested information relating to the other departments of your command to be forwarded by any other means that the usual course of the mails, and supposed the commanders were in direct correspondence with you.
I advised you on the 23rd of April of certain troops having been ordered to report to General Field, viz, two regiments from this city raised for local defense, two light batteries, a brigade from South Carolina, and a brigade from North Carolina, making in all about 8,000