On the 19th I succeeded in getting one brigade, with its train, and the ordnance and supply trains up. On the mountain the water is scarce, and limited when found, and I ordered this brigade to move forward and occupy this place, which was done on the 21st.
On the same day my other brigades, with their trains, were gotten up and arrived here to-day. The springs, with their small branches, afford a sufficient quantity of water. The road down the valley of Larkin's Fork could not be used in a rainy season, as the banks bear evidences of overflow to the depth of 6 or 8 feet.
Bellefonte, once a flourishing village of 2,000 inhabitants, has only about six families remaining in it, all of whom were probably too poor to get away. The troops passing through it have committed all kind of outrages upon the property of the people. Many of the houses have been torn down and otherwise abused.
The rebels have pickets on the south bank of the river. Four miles below here was a country ferry, but the road on the south side is said to be impassable. Fourteen miles below, at Gunter's Ferry, is a good road on both sides. For miles above and below this place the bank on the south side is much higher than that on the north.
I have no means of knowing the quantity of forage in the country. The valleys are in good cultivation, and a large amount of corn will be raised this year.
The station at the depot has been destroyed, though there is an old building there which would store a limited quantity of supplies. There is no water convenient to the depot suitable for the use of a camp. I inclose a map* of the route followed by my division, and will forward in a few days a map of the environs of this place.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. W. JOHNSON,
Brigadier-General of Volunteers, Commanding.
HEADQUARTERS TWENTIETH ARMY CORPS,
August 22, 1863.
GENERAL: The following is a copy of a dispatch just received from Major-General Sheridan:
BRIDGEPORT, August 22, 1863.
I sent 25 sharpshooters across the river this afternoon under charge of Lieutenant Turnbull. They were met by a squad of horse, which was soon dispersed and driven back. Every indication is that the force under Anderson has fallen back.
W. H. LYTLE,
A. McD. McCOOK,
BRIDGEPORT, August 22, 1863-12.15 a. m.
Captain J. C. VAN DUZER, Aide-de-Camp:
Firing directly east of this place. Distance estimated 6 or 8 miles. Great light to be seen in same direction. Eight shots fired up to this time.
W. H. LYTLE,
Fire supposed to be Taylor's store.