Then, on the 5th of April, I found myself with 53,000 men in hand, giving less than 42,000 for battle, after deducting extra-duty men and other non-combatants.
In our front was an intrenched line, apparently too strong for assault, and which I had now no means of turning, either by land or water.
I now learned that 85,000 would be the maximum force at my disposal, giving only some 67,000 for battle.
Of the three divisions yet to join, Casey's reached the front only on the 17th, Richardson's on the 16th, and Hooker's commenced arriving at Ship Point on the 10th.
Whatever may have been said afterward, no one at the time — so far as my knowledge extended — thought an assault practicable without certain preliminary siege operations.
At all events, my personal experience in this kind of work was greater than that of any officer under my command; and after personal reconnoissances more appropriate to a lieutenant of engineers than to the commanding general, I could nei