although his army already largely outnumbered that which defended the beleaguered city, he kept calling constantly and urgently on his Government for reeenforcements. On Wednesday, June twenty-fifth, his army numbered, judging from the most authentic statements that are available, between one hundred and twenty-five thousand, and one hundred and thirty thousand effective men. With this immense force he was cautiously pushing forward his lines. Meantime it had been determined by the confederate generals to attack the invading host in their fortified position, and to cooperate in this grand movement the bulk of the confederate forces which had recently cleared the invaders out of the valley of Virginia, were rapidly and quietly drawn towards Richmond, in order to flank McClellan's left. A brief reference to the situation of the opposing armies will here be necessary to enable the reader to understand the subsequent movements. If you will take a map of Virginia and run your eye along the line of the Virginia Central Railroad until it crosses the Chickahominy at the point designated as the Meadow bridge, you will be in the vicinity of the position occupied by the extreme right of the Federal army. Tracing from this position a semi-circular line, which crosses the Chickahominy in the neighborhood of the New bridge, and then the York River Railroad, further on, you arrive at a point southeast of Richmond, but a comparatively short distance from the James River, where rests the Federal left. To be a little more explicit, spread your fingers so that their tips will form as near as possible the arc of a circle. Imagine Richmond as situated upon your wrist; the outer edge of the thumb as the Central Railroad; the inner edge as the Mechanicsville turnpike; the first finger as the Nine-mile or New-bridge road; the second as the Williamsburgh turnpike, running nearly parallel with the York River Railroad; the third as the Charles City turnpike, (which runs to the southward of the White Oak Swamp;) and the fourth as the Darbytown road. Commanding these several avenues were the forces of McClellan. Our own troops, with the exception of Jackson's corps, occupied a similar but of course smaller circle immediately around Richmond, the heaviest body being on the centre, south of the York River Railroad. Such was the situation previous to Thursday, the twenty-sixth of June. The plan of battle then developed was, first, to make a vigorous flank movement upon the enemy's extreme right, which was within a mile or two of the Central Railroad; secondly, as soon as they fell back to the next road below, our divisions there posted were to advance across the Chickahominy, charge front, and, in cooperation with, Jackson, who was to make a detour, and attack the Federals in flank and rear, drive them still further on; and, finally, when they had reached a certain point, now known as “the triangle,” embraced between the Charles City, New-Market, and Quaker roads, all of which intersect, these several approaches were to be possessed by our forces, the enemy to be thus hemmed in and compelled either to starve, capitulate, or fight his way out with tremendous odds and topographical advantages against him. How so excellent a plan eventually happened to fail, at least partially, in the execution, will presently appear.
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