Casey's division at the recent battle of Fair Oak was not surprised, according to reports made to me, but defective disposition of picket forces and inefficiency of officers, together with bad discipline, account for its conduct, in my opinion, in this battle.
As a division, I do not think it could be trusted by itself in another engagement with the enemy soon, believing the shock and repulse it received in the last action has too much demoralized the men and officers to safely count upon their making a firm stand. The best disposition to make of the troops of this division under existing circumstances is to consolidate regiments, weeding out inefficient officers, and to combine them with other troops, in my opinion. I would break up the division organization, but not the brigade altogether.
Efficient officers, association with good troops, and proper encouragement will, I think, work great changes for the better in this command.
I am, general, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,
N. H. DAVIS,
Assistant Inspector-General, U. S. Army.
McLELLAN'S HEADQUARTERS, June 5, 1862-10.30 p. m.
Honorable E. M. STANTON:
My dispatch of the 1st instant, stating that General Casey's division, which was with first line, gave way unaccountably and discreditably, was based upon official statements made to me before I arrived upon the battle-field, and while I was there by superior commanders. From statements made to me subsequently by Generals Casey and Naglee I am induced to believe that portions of the divisions behaved well and made a most gallant stand against superior numbers, but at present the accounts are too conflicting to enable me to discriminate with certainty. When the facts are clearly ascertained the exceptional good conduct will be properly acknowledged.
GEO. B. McLELLAN,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, June 6, 1862-10 p. m.
(Received 4 a. m., June 7.)
Honorable E. M. STANTON,
Secretary of War:
Statement of killed, wounded, and missing of the 31st of May and June 1, 1862, in front of Richmond:
General Sumner, Second Corps, 183 killed, 894 wounded, and 146 missing; General Heintzelman's Third Corps, 259 killed, 980 wounded, and 155 missing; Keyes' Fourth Corps, 448 killed, 1,753 wounded, 921 missing. Total, 890 killed, 3,627 wounded, 1,222 missing. Grand total killed, wounded, and missing, 5,739.*
A nominal list will furnished as soon as the data can be received.
GEO. B. McLELLAN,
* But see recapitulation of revised statement, p 762.