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[268] which General McClellan required, and he therefore determined to withdraw it to some position where it could unite with that of General Pope, who was now in command of the Army of Virginia. But this decision was not immediately made known to General McClellan, who on the 30th of July received a despatch from General Halleck saying that, in order to enable him to move in any direction, it was necessary to relieve him of his sick, and that arrangements had been made accordingly, adding, “I hope you will send them away as quickly as possible, and advise me of their removal.” General McClellan began immediately to execute this order, but pressed the general-in-chief to inform him of the views of the Government in regard to the future disposition of the Army of the Potomac, because if a forward movement were contemplated many of the sick could be of service at the depots, and he could not decide what cases to send off unless he knew what was to be done with the army.

On the 3d of August, Coggin's Point, on the south side of the James, was occupied by our troops, and Colonel Averill, at the head of three hundred cavalry, attacked and dispersed a cavalry force of the enemy four hundred and fifty in number, at Sycamore Church, on the main road from Petersburg to Suffolk, four miles from Cole's House. On the 5th of August, General Hooker attacked a very considerable force of infantry and artillery stationed at Malvern Hill, carried the position, and drove the enemy back to Newmarket, four miles

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