NEAR YORKTOWN, April 9, 1.20 P. M. – The weather still continues unfavorable for military operations. It has been raining for nearly two days; the creeks are very much swollen, and the low grounds covered with water, making the roads almost impassible for empty wagons.
Information received shows that the rebels have a force of 60,000, which is being rapidly added to by troops from the neighborhood of Richmond, which is one day from Yorktown by railroad and river – they having four steamers and sixteen transports in use, and by the time the roads are in condition for the Union army to move, the rebels may be able to meet them with one hundred thousand – the flower of their army, with the best arms in a strong entrenched position opposed to our troops, occupying their present position. The military authorities have no means of ascertaining the extent of the rebel works.
Information obtained through deserters, contrabands and other sources show that the enemy have nearly 500 guns, some of them of the largest caliber.
The rebel Gen. Johnson [sic] with some of his forces has arrived; he takes command in person. The intend making a desperate resistance to our advance. Their forces extend from the James to the York rivers, entirely across the Peninsula.
– Published in the Burlington Weekly Hawk-Eye, Burlington, Iowa, Saturday, April 12, 1862, p. 3