HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,
Haxall's Plantation, July 1, 1862.
Brigadier General LORENZO THOMAS,
Adjutant-General U. S. Army:
GENERAL: My whole army is here, with all its guns and material. The battle of yesterday was very severe, but the enemy was repulsed and severely punished. After dark the troops retired to this position. My men are completely exhausted, and I dread the result if we are attacked to-day by fresh troops. If possible I shall retire to-night to Harrison's Bar, where the gunboats can render more aid in covering our position. Permit me to urge that not an hour should be lost in sending me fresh troops. More gunboats are much needed.
I hope that the enemy was so severely handled yesterday as to render him careful in his movements to-day. I now pray for time. My men have proved themselves the equals of any troops in the world, but they are worn-out. Our losses have been very great. I doubt whether more severe battles have ever been fought. We have failed to win only because overpowered by superior numbers.
Very truly, yours,
GEO. B. McCLELLAN,
NORFOLK, July 1, 1862-p.m.
Honorable GIDEON WELLES,
Secretary of the Navy:
Under date of yesterday I have a letter from Commander Rodgers, in which he says the army is, much of it, on the James River banks, just above City Point. It is safe. General King and Colonel Alexander McClelland's headquarters, are at Turkey Bend. He himself was on board the Galena yesterday. I have sent the Dacotah and Wachusett to Harden's Bluff to destroy the guns there effectually, and also at Day's Point, if possible. The former vessel returned yesterday afternoon from convoying a number of transports up the James River, and it was my intention to send here back with another, but owing to a report that the enemy was probably trying to get two guns in batteries at Harden's Bluff I determined to send her off this morning, as stated.
There are no guns at Fort Powhatan up to my last accounts. It is even doubtful whether any were ever there, judging from the appearance of the place, which is overgrown with high grass.
FORT MONROE, July 1, 1862-10.25 a.m.
Honorable E. M. STANTON,
Secretary of War:
Colonel Campbell was directed to make a reconnaissance yesterday toward the White House. He encountered the enemy's pickets near New Kent Court-House and drove them in. He was attacked in return by a considerable cavalry force and was obliged to fall back. The enemy's purpose will be ascertained if possible during the day. Please say to the President communication with General McClellan by way of