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[4] soldiers in 1781. The peninsula itself upon which Yorktown stands is narrowed by a swampy stream, Warwick Creek, which, taking its rise at less than two kilometres from the old bastions of this town, empties into the James perpendicularly to its course. It was here that nature had marked out for the Confederates their true line of defence. Having control of James River, thanks to the Virginia, and of York River, owing to the batteries of Gloucester Point, they could not be turned by the Federal navy. The two rivers supplied them with provisions, instead of furnishing the means of attack to their adversaries, and so long as they preserved the line of Warwick Creek, Yorktown could not be invested. All these points, therefore, supported each other mutually. Thirty-two kilometres separated Yorktown from Fort Monroe. Sixteen kilometres farther, another contraction of the peninsula occurs, even narrower than that caused by Warwick Creek, formed by two streams called College Creek and Queen's Creek; one running toward the James, the other toward York River. Near this place stands the oldest university in America, William and Mary College, founded during the reign of William the Third, the spacious buildings of which, of red and gray brick, together with the court-yards and pavilions, remind one of the English edifices of the eighteenth century, and have an air of antiquity seldom met with in the New World. Around the university is grouped the pretty little town of Williamsburg, the houses of which are surrounded by gardens and shaded by beautiful trees. It was for a time the capital of the colony, when Virginia was richer and had a larger population than at the present day.

Between Fort Monroe and Richmond there is but a single line of railway, which, starting from the latter city, crosses the upper Chickahominy, then the Pamunky at White House, and terminates at West Point, where the latter river and the Mattapony both empty into the salt waters of York River.

Such was the new ground upon which the army of the Potomac was about to fight. The transportation of this army was a difficult task, and was accomplished in a remarkable manner. The first vessels were chartered on the 27th of February; on the 17th of March the first soldier was embarked; and on the 6th

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