War of the Rebellion: Serial 084 Page 0124 LOUISIANA AND THE TRANS-MISSISSIPPI. Chapter LIII.

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impossible to get them. Am I to have requisitions made for cavalry horses under the order to mount with ponies? If the ponies are to be purchased by the Cavalry Bureau, can they take steps to purchase 1,000 at once, while the papers are being sent, as they are needed now? If the design is to capture the horses and mount my men on them, I shall do my best, but it is useless to hope that we will get many in that way. In fact we can never get half enough from the enemy for the scouts to use. If the Indians all had fresh horses to turn in to the service of the Government, I would have some hesitation about asking them to do so for nothing, nor do I think they would. The worst of it is they have not got them. The telegrams are concise, but do not convey enough to enable me to mount the 1,000 men. I desire to mount of the three Indian regiments about half of the effective force. I solicit an early reply as to how I shall get the horses or ponies.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

WM. A. PHILLIPS,

Colonel, Commanding.

[First indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF THE FRONTIER,

Fort Smith, Ark., July 17, 1864.

Respectfully forwarded to Major General F. Steele, commanding Department of Arkansas.

The policy of mounting the Indian Home Guard regiments is not fully indorsed by me for the following reasons: It is exceedingly difficult to obtain horses, even for the regularly organized cavalry; forage is scarce and grain could not be furnished; the term of service of these regiments is drawing near its close, and it is doubtful whether the service that would be rendered for the short period intervening between the time they would be fully equipped and the time of their muster out would justify the expenditure of $160,000. It will cost this sum to furnish mounts and equipments.

JOHN M. THAYER,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

[Second indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ARKANSAS,

Little Rock, July 25, 1864.

Disapproved and respectfully returned to Brigadier General J. M. Thayer, commanding District of the Frontier. Horses cannot be procured for the cavalry regiments in this department.

By order of Major General F. Steele:

W. D. GREEN,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

[Third indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF THE FRONTIER,

Fort Smith, November 25, 1864.

Respectfully returned to commanding officer Indian Brigade for his information.

By command of Brigadier-General Thayer:

T. J. ANDERSON,

Assistant Adjutant-General.