brackish water from the marshy hands at Decklas Point, and by night, nothing having been heard of the detachment, some suspicion of the seizure of this party and of a movement to cut us off was entertained on the schooners, but we could not get out across the bar. The easterly winds which prevailed, and the refusal of the pilots along the coast to come to our aid, had completed our disaster. The night was cloudy and dark, but about 11 o'clock three steamers were visible within a short distance of our anchorage to the withdrawal. Lieutenant Hopkins, of the Third, was sent off in a small boat to obtain some information in regard to these steamers. He could get no answer from them, and returned to the schooners. At daylight, on the morning of the 25th, it was observed that these steamers had on board some eight hundred or one thousand troops, effectually protected with tiers of cotton bales on both decks. It is supposed these steamers had several pieces of artillery.
Colonel Van Dorn sent a messenger, requesting an interview, which, after consultation with the officers, was granted, and at this time a large steamer from New Orleans came over the bar and took up a position below us. She had on board two 24-pounders and two field pieces, and probably five hundred troops. There being no further hope of our escape, I was obliged to accede to the requirements of Colonel Van Dorn, and surrender my command as prisoners of war.
On the 28th the brig Mystic arrived off the port of Saluria, bringing Lieutenant Greene and the detachment sent up on the 24th. They had been captured at Indianola. The command was then divided; the battalion of the First Infantry being assigned to the schooner Horace, that to the Eighth to the schooner Urbana, and that of the Third Infantry to the brig Mystic. The two first named were towed over the bar on the 30th, and proceeded to sea. The brig was unable to pass the bar until the 3rd of May, to the low water. The two schooners arrived in the harbor of New York on the 31st of May, and the brig on the 1st of June, after a rough passage of a month from the coast of Texas.
It is not necessary of speak of the accumulated hardship to which the troops have been necessarily subjected, crowded as they were upon these inconvenient, open transports, and I again take occasion to remark upon the high-toned, unwavering spirit of the officers, and the fidelity and good conduct of the enlisted men of this command. I inclose herewith a copy of the articles of capitulation;* also, copy of a letter from Major Larkin Smith relative to the embarkation of the troops [A]; the official report of Lieutenant J. B. Greene, First Infantry [C]; a field return of the command on the 25th of April;+ a copy of the parole of the officers,* and a copy of the oath taken by the enlisted men [B].
I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
C. C. SIBLEY,
Major Third Infantry, Commanding Troops.
Bvt. Brigadier General L. THOMAS,
Adjutant-General U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.
HEADQUARTERS CAMP ON GREEN LAKE, TEXAS,
April 13, 1861.
SIR: Orders from Army headquarters direct the troops embarking at Indianola to proceed to New York Harbor. I am here by direction of Colonel Waite, to arrange the troops for embarkation. So soon as
* See inclosures to report of April 25, p.562.
+ Not found.