REPLY TO GENERAL JOHNSTON--CASSVILLE.
WHEN the preceding chapter was written, setting forth my most positive denial of General Johnston's statements in regard to that which he avers to have been said by General Polk and myself, at Polk's headquarters, during this important council; and when I charged General Johnston with the suppression of the most important part of the recommendations made to him by each of us, I was under the impression that only Johnston, Polk and I were present in the room during the discussion. Fortunately, however, the complete vindication of my assertion has arisen from a source I little expected. In addition to the strong evidence adduced by the letters of General Shoupe and Doctor Polk, I am favored with the subjoined full and explanatory letter from a gentleman of no less position than that of chief engineer of a corps d'armee, and who was present, in the room, during the council of war held by Johnston, Polk, and myself, with map and measurement of angles of the position in question:
" NEW YORK, June 25th, 1874.
"DR. W. M. Polk, 288 Fifth Avenue, New York.
"DEAR SIR:--In reply to your note of the 20th inst., asking me to give
you my recollection of the circumstances in regard to the retreat of the