War of the Rebellion: Serial 001 Page 0659 Chapter VIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

Search Civil War Official Records

without the sanction of the commanding general, to whom you ill present any considerations touching those subjects you may think worthy of adoption.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

S. WILLIAMS,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY,

Washington, March 21, 1861.

Lieutenant Colonel W. H. EMORY, First Cavalry, Washington, D. C.:

SIR: The general does not thing proper to give more specific instructions in relation to the posts in Arkansas. He had a conference with Senator Mitchell the 19th instant, and, in deference to his opinion, agrees that a company may be kept at Fort Cobb, but prefers to leave the question to the discretion given you in instructions of the 18th instant.

In regard to the questions asked by you the other day, the general says: "If asked by the commander of Fort Smith for aid in guarding the post and depot, give it. If the State secedes, march all the troops beyond its limits."

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. D. TOWNSEND,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY,

Washington, March 27, 1861.

[SECRETARY OF WAR:]

The letter of Honorable Charles B. Mitchell, U. S. Senator from Arkansas, dated the 17th instant, in relation to the military posts in Arkansas, having been submitted to Lieutenant-General Scott, he has the honor to report, speaking not from documentary information but rather from oral testimony, as follows:

Fort Smith in an old established post, from which the troops had been for a time withdrawn, but which has been lately used as a depot to supply the advanced posts soon to be named.

The honorable Senator proposes that the troops at Fort Smith shall be transferred to a point called "Frozen Rock," about fifteen miles southeast of Fort Gibson, on the Arkansas River, which is said to be a suitable position for a post. If this idea is to be entertained, a preliminary examination of the site should be made by a competent officer,a nd the title to the land, the sources of supply, lines of communication, &c., should be ascertained. By act of March 3, 1859, "No permanent barracks and quarters shell hereafter be constructed unless detailed estimates shall have been previously submitted to Congress, and shall have been approved by a special approbation for the same." Until these previous steps are taken, no movement can be taken to transfer the troops from Fort Smith.

For Washita, also an old-established post, is about 160 miles from Fort Smith. It is a highly important military point. The public buildings are good and in repair. Orders were given Lieutenant-Colonel Emory, First Cavalry, the 18th instant, to proceed there and establish his headquarters as commander of his regiment, with discretionary power to concentrate at or in the vicinity of the post two companies.