War of the Rebellion: Serial 014 Page 0146 THE PENINSULAR CAMPAIGN,VA. Chapter XXIII.

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to camp near that place and prepare to embark. Further orders will be given you before the embarkation of your headquarters and Richardson's division takes place.

Sedgwick has been put on special service, soon to join you.


Assistant Adjutant-General.

From McCLELLAN'S. (Received May 6, 1862.)

Hon. E. M. STANTON, Washington:

SIR: McDowell and Banks should advance promptly on Richmond to make diversion in favor of the advance of this army, now energetically pursuing the enemy.

The Galena and a few gunboats should pass up the James River to prevent the enemy from embarking from their position near Williamsburg. They now have ten steamboats transporting their retiring forces. The enemy fight well.


WILLIAMSBURG, May 7, 1862.


Secretary of War:

Your dispatch of yesterday received. I have sent out a strong advance guard this morning to endeavor to make its way over the bad roads and ascertain the movements of the enemy. Until the roads improve both in front and rear no large body of troops can be moved. I dare not leave my command in the present state of affairs, so that it is really impossible for me to go to the rear to meet the President and yourself. I sent cavalry to Jamestown yesterday, who found the battery abandoned, magazine burned up, gun-carriages burned, guns still there. I am satisfied that we have one or more desperate battles to fight before we gain possession of Richmond, and that we shall need to employ all our skill, and means to again our ends. We will probably have to meet their concentrated forces. I have seen as yet no demonstration of Union feeling worth mentioning.

If it is a possible thing for the Galena and other gunboats to move up James River we would be materially assisted. I learn that one of the enemy's principal gunboats is at Norfolk; the other in Richmond. I allude to the Jamestown and Yorktown. It is stated that the country is destitute of persons and the necessities of life. I would invite the attention of the Secretary of Treasury to the subject of opening trade.


Major-General, Commanding.

FOR MONROE, VA., May 7, 1862.


SIR: Major-General McClellan telegraphs that he has ascertained by a reconnaissance that the battery at Jamestown has been abandoned, and he again requests that gunboats may be sent up the James River.