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[203] McClellan was constantly burdened with a conviction that his troops were not numerous enough for the work in hand, and that reinforcements were essential to success. He had carried with him to the Peninsula about eighty-five thousand men, and Franklin's division, which had subsequently joined him, amounted to ten thousand more; but some of his troops had been killed or disabled in battle, some had died from disease, and garrisons had been left at Yorktown, Williamsburg, and Gloucester, so that now he could not confidently rely upon more than eighty thousand men. But time, which was thinning his ranks, was swelling those of the enemy; and the task before him was that of taking a city strongly defended, before which was an army larger than his own. On the 10th of May, from a camp three miles from Williamsburg, he sent a brief telegram to the Secretary of War, setting forth his position, and urging the necessity of reinforcing him without delay with all the disposable troops in Eastern Virginia. He assures the Secretary that the rebels will not abandon Richmond without a struggle, and adds that unless he is reinforced it is probable he shall be obliged to fight nearly double his numbers, strongly intrenched.

On the 14th of May, he sent a telegram to the President in the same strain, stating that the time had come for striking a fatal blow at the enemies of the Constitution, and entreating him that he would cause the Army of the Peninsula to be reinforced without delay by all the disposable troops of the Government. To this, on the 18th, an answer

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