new troops coming from the North. It is understood that several regiments are coming by water from New York. The Boston troops should be at Fort Monroe to-day. It is believed that the entire force of the enemy is before us here, and that not more than 10,000 or 15,000 Home Guards were left at Richmond. If you have reliable information different you must retain more troops.
H. W. HALLECK,
Washington, September 10, 1862.
Major-General DIX, Fort Monroe, Va.:
The Merrimac, with two regiments from Boston, is bound to this place. If you can stop her at Fort Monroe keep those regiments for your command.
H. W. HALLECK,
FORT MONROE, VA.,
September 10, 1862-4 p. m.
Major General H. W. HALLECK,
When General McClellan was between this fort and Richmond, and before the occupation of Suffolk, General Wool had 14,978 men, of whom 12,847 were effective, for the defense of the fort, Newport News, and he immediate district of country, exclusive of General Peck's division. My force is but 5,326 men, of whom only 4,108 are effective, and with this I have not only the same district which General Wool had, but Norfolk, Suffolk, and Yorktown in addition.
I have reliable information that an attack on Suffolk is meditated. A brigade went down from Petersburg to defend it a few days ago, and from that point the railroad communication is open to the Blackwater at Franklin, or Carrsville, 20 miles from Suffolk. I have at Suffolk to-day only 2,900 effective men. When General Mansfield had a much larger force, and McClellan was between us and Richmond, he pressed me for r-enforcements. He certainly cannot know that the Third and Fourth New York and the First Delaware, the best regiments, have been withdrawn. They numbered over 2,300 men.
General Keyes advises me this morning that he has information from various sources establishing the fact that the rebels are in considerable force of artillery, cavalry, and infantry at Barhamsville, 18 miles from Williamsburg. There are numerous evidences of activity on his part in various directions, and if we hold Suffolk and Yorktown I certainly ought to have 20,000 men. This was the smallest number through by General McClellan to be sufficient for the purpose.
I earnestly request that the sick, except those belonging to regiments here, may be sent North. September is the worst season, and the new hospitals are so miserably constructed as to be unfit for convalescents in storms, which are frequent at this season. But the great objection is in having so large a number of sick in a district exposed to attack and not covered by defensive works.
JOHN A. DIX,