War of the Rebellion: Serial 027 Page 0024 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA [CHAP XXXI.

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command of General McClellan, and that all requisitions for its subsistence on this department have been promptly met.

With great respect, your most obedient servant,


Major, Acting Commissary-General of Subsistence.

Numbers 2. Reports of Major General George B. McClellan, U. S. Army, commanding the Army of the Potomac, of operations August 14-November 9.


October 15, 1862.

GENERAL: I have the honor to submit a preliminary report of the military operations under my charge since the evacuation of Harrison's Landing.

This measure, directed by the General-in-Chief, was executed successfully, with entire safety to my command and its materiel, between the 14th mouth of the Chickahominy, Williamsburg, and Yorktown. Upon this line the main body of the army with all its trains was moved, Heintzelman's corps crossing the Chickahominy at Jones' Bridge and covering by its march the movement of the main column. The passage of the Lower Chickahominy was effected by means of a bateau bridge 2,000 feet in length. The transfer of the army to Yorktown was completed by the 19th of August. The embarkation of the troops and materiel at Yorktown and Fort Monroe was at once commenced, and as rapidly as the means of transportation admitted everything was sent forward to Aquia Creek and Alexandria. No mere sketch of an undertaking of such magnitude and yet so delicate a military character will suffice to do justice. I must now, however, content myself with a simple notice of it, deferring a full description for my official report of the campaign before Richmond a labor which I propose to undertake as soon as events will afford me the necessary time. Justice to the achievements of the Army of the Potomac and the brave men who composed it requires that the official record of that campaign should be prepared with more care than circumstances have hitherto permitted me to bestow upon it. The delay will not have been felt as injurious to the public interest, inasmuch as by frequent reports from time to time I have kept the Department advised of events as they occurred.

I reached Aquia Creek with my staff on the 24th of August 6, reported my arrival, and asked for orders. On the 27th of August I received from the General-in-Chief permission to proceed to Alexandria, where I at once fixed my headquarters. The troops composing the Army of the Potomac were meanwhile ordered forward to re-enforce the army under General Pope. So completely was this order carried out that on the 30th of August I had remaining under my command only a camp guard of about 100 men. Everything else had been sent to re-enforce General Pope. In addition, I exhausted all the means at my disposal to forward supplies to that officer, my own headquarters teams even being used for that purpose.

Upon the unfortunate issue of that campaign, I received an intimation from the General-in-Chief that my services were desired for the pur-