NEAR CHATTAHOOCHEE RAILROAD BRIDGE,
July 8, 1864.
His Excellency the PRESIDENT, Richmond:
SIR: I have received your dispatch of yesterday. Our falling back was slow. Every change of position has been reported to General Bragg. We have been forced back by the operations of a siege, which the enemy’s extreme caution and greatly superior numbers have made me unable to prevent. I have found no opportunity for battle except by attacking intrenchments. It is supposed in the army that Sherman’s immediate object is the capture of Atlanta. A part of our troops is on the north side of the river intrenched, and, having six bridges behind it, so that we do not think it exposed. It is believed here that there are 16,000 cavalry for defense of Mississippi and Alabama, and, therefore, that the enemy cannot make a detachment able to invade that department. Might not 4,000 of this cavalry prevent the danger by breaking up the railroad between the enemy and Dalton, thus compelling Sherman to withdraw?
J. E. JOHNSTON.
From General Joseph E. Johnston to Jefferson Davis – July 8, 1864