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any such apprehension in his mind. "If we have a little more than half a chance," he said, "we can take Richmond." On the 17th, he urged that General Burnside's whole command in North Carolina should be ordered to join him, to enable him to 66 assume the offensive as soon as possible." On the 18th, he repeated this request; and on the 28th, again urged that he should be "at once re-enforced by all available troops." On the 25th, General Halleck had visited the camp, and, after a careful inspection of the condition of the army, called an informal council of the officers, a majority of whom, upon learning the state of affairs, recommended its withdrawal from the Peninsula. On the 30th, he issued an order to General McClellan to make arrangements at once for a prompt removal of all the sick in his army, in order to enable him to move "in any direction." On the 2d of August, not having received any reply, General Halleck renewed his order to "remove them as rapidly as possible;" to which, on the 3d, General McClellan replied that it was "impossible to decide what cases to send off unless he knew what was to be done with the army"—and that if he was to be "kept longer in ignorance of what was to be effected, he could not be expected to accomplish the object in view." In reply, General Halleck informed him that his army was to be "withdrawn from the Peninsula to Acquia Creek," but that the withdrawal should be concealed even from his own officers. General McClellan, on the 4th, wrote a long protest against this movement― saying it mattered not what partial reverses might be sustained elsewhere-there was the "true defence of Washington," and he asked that the order might be rescinded. To this letter, after again urging General McClellan on the 4th to hasten the removal of the sick, which he was "expected to have done without waiting to know what were or would be the intentions of the Government respecting future movements," General Halleck on the 6th addressed him as follows:

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GENERAL: Your telegram of yesterday was received this morning, and I immediately telegraphed a brief reply, promising to write you moro fully by mail

You, General, certainly could not have been more pained at receiving my order than I was at the necessity of issuing it. I was advised by high officers, in whose judgment I had great confidence, to make the order immediately on my arrival here, but I determined not to do so until I could learn your wishes from a personal interview. And even after that interview I tried every means in my power to avoid withdrawing your ariny, and delayed my decision as long as I dared to delay it.

I assure you, General, it was not a hasty and inconsiderate act, but one that caused me more anxious thoughts than any other of my life. But after full and mature consideration of all the pros and cons, I was reluctantly forced to the conclusion that the order must be issued― there was to my mind no alternative.

Allow me to allude to a few of the facts in the case.

You and your officers at our interview estimated the enemy's forces in and around Richmond at two hundred thousand men. Since then, you and others report that they have received and are receiving large re-enforcements from the South. General Pope's army, covering Washington, is only about forty thousand. Your effective force is only about ninety thousand. You are thirty miles from Richmond, and General Pope eighty or ninety, with the enemy directly between you, ready to fall with his superior numbers upon one or the other as he may elect; neither can rc-enforce the other in case of such an attack.

If General Pope's army be diminished to re-enforce you, Washington, Maryland, and Pennsylvania, would be left uncovered and exposed. If your force be reduced to strengthen Pope, you would be too weak to even hold the position you now occupy, should the enemy turn round and attack you in full force. In other words, the old Army of the Potomac is split into two parts, with the entire force of the enemy directly between them. They cannot be united by land without exposing both to destruction, and yet they must be united. To send Pope's forces by water to the Peninsula is, under present circumstances, a military impossibility. The only alternative is to send the forces on the Peninsula to some point by water, say Fredericksburg, where the two armies can be united.

Let me now allude to some of the objections which you have urged: you say that the withdrawal from the present position will cause the certain demoralization of the army, "which is now in excellent discipline and condition."

I cannot understand why a simple change of position to a new and by no means distant base will demoralize an army in excellent discipline, unless the officers themselves assist in that demoralization, which I am satisfied they will not.

Your change of front from your extreme right at Hanover Court-House to your present condition was over thirty miles, but I have not heard that it demoralized your troops, notwithstanding the severe losses they sustained in effecting it.

A new base on the Rappahannock at Fredericksburg brings you within about sixty miles of Richmond, and secures a re-enforcement of forty or fifty thousand fresh and disciplined troops.

The change with such advantages will, I think, if properly represented to your army, encourage rather than demoralize your troops. Moreover, you yourself suggested that a junction might be effected at Yorktown, but that a flank march across the isthmus would be more hazardous than to retire to Fort Monroe.

You will remember that Yorktown is two or three miles further than Fredericksburg is. Besides, the latter is between Richmond and

Washington, and covers Washington from any attack of the enemy.

The political effect of the withdrawal may at first be unfavorable; but I think the public are beginning to understand its necessity, and that they will have much more confidence in a united army than in its separated fragments.

But you will reply, why not re-enforce me here, so that I can strike Richmond from my present position? To do this, you said, at our interview, that you required thirty thousand additional troops. I told you that it was impossible to give you so many. You finally thought you would have " 'some chance" of success with twenty thousand. But you afterwards telegraphed me that you would require thirty-five thousand, as the enemy was being largely re-enforced.

If your estimate of the enemy's strength was correct, your requisition was perfectly reasonable; but it was utterly impossible to fill it until new troops could be enlisted and organized, which would require several weeks.

To keep your army in its present position until it could be so re-enforced would almost destroy it in that climate.

The months of August and September are almost fatal to whites who live on that part of James River; and even after you received the reenforcement asked for, you admitted that you must reduce Fort Darling and the river batteries before you could advance on Richmond.

It is by no means certain that the reduction of these fortifications would not require considerable time-perhaps as much as those at Yorktown.

This delay might not only be fatal to the health of your army, but in the mean time General Pope's forces would be exposed to the heavy blows of the enemy without the slightest hope of assistance from you.

In regard to the demoralizing effect of a withdrawal from the Peninsula to the Rappahannock, I must remark that a large number of your highest officers, indeed a majority of those whose opinions have been reported to me, are decidedly in favor of the movement. Even several of those who originally advocated the line of the Peninsula now advise its abandonment.

I have not inquired, and do not wish to know, by whose advice or for . what reasons the army of the Potomac was separated into two parts with the onemy between them, I must take things as I find them.

I find the forces divided, and I wish to unite them. Only one feasible plan has been presented for doing this. If you, or any one else, had presented a better plan, I certainly should have adopted it. But all of your plans require re-enforcements which it is impossible to give you. It is very easy to ask for re-enforcements, but it is not so easy to give them when you have no disposable troops at your command.

I have written very plainly as I understand the case, and I hope you will give me credit for having fully considered the matter, although I may have arrived at very different conclusions from your own.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. H. HALLECK, General-in-Chief. Major-General G. B. MCCLELLAN, Commanding, etc., Berkeley, Virginia.

The order for the removal of the sick was given to General McClellan on the 2d of August. On the 7th he reported that 3,740 had been sent, and 5,700 still remained. On the 9th, General Halleck telegraphed McClellan that the enemy was massing his forces in front of General Pope and Burnside to crush them and move upon Washington, and that re-enforcements must at once be sent to Aquia Creek; to which he replied that he

would " move the whole army as soon as the sick were disposed of." On the 12th, in reply to the most pressing orders for immediate dispatch from General Halleck, who urged that Burnside had moved 13,000 troops in two days to Aquia Creek, General McClellan said if Washington was in danger, that army could scarcely arrive in time to save it. On the 14th, he announced that the movement had commenced; on the 17th, he said he "should not feel entirely secure until he had the whole army beyond the Chickahominy, but that he would then begin to forward troops by water as fast as transportation would permit." On the 23d, General Franklin's Corps started from Fortress Monroe; General McClellan followed the next day, and reached Aquia Creck on the 24th, and Alexandria on the evening of the 26th of August.

On the 27th of June the President had issued an order consolidating into one army, to be called the Army of Virginia, the forces under Major-Generals Fremont, Banks, and McDowell. The command of this army was assigned to Major-General John Pope; and the army was divided into three corps, of which the first was assigned to Fremont, the second to Banks, and the third to McDowell. Upon receiving this order Major-General Fremont applied to be relieved from the command which it assigned him, on the ground that by the appointment of General Pope to the chief command, his (Fremont's) position was "subordinate and inferior to that heretofore held by him, and to remain in the subordinate rank now assigned him, would largely reduce his rank and consideration in the service." In compliance with his request, General Fremont was at once relieved.

On the 27th of August, General McClellan was ordered by General Halleck to "take entire direction of the sending out of the troops from Alexandria” to re-enforce Pope, whom the enemy were pressing with a powerful army, and whose headquarters were then at Warrenton Junction. A portion of the

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