all unshod, and consequently unfit for travel, we procured a few shoes and a quantity of old iron, called for blacksmiths from our ranks, took possession of two unoccupied blacksmiths' shops, and in five days shot our horses and mules, 232 in number.
Our scanty supply of ammunition having been destroyed by the rain, and having two small bullet-molds in our possession, we procured lead and powder, and turning a carpenter's shop into a manufactory, made 3,000 cartridges for our revolving rifles.
On the 15th instant Colonel Hovey, commanding at Georgetown, received a dispatch from Lexington, stating that a valuable baggage train had left the vicinity of Lexington destined for Price's rebel army; also a private dispatch from Colonel White, stating that if he and his fellow-prisoners were not relieved within twenty-four hours they would be assassinated by the rebel marauders infesting Lexington. As Colonel Hovey's command was under marching orders, and therefore could not go to their relief, my command volunteered for the service, and Colonel Eads, of Georgetown, tendered me 70 men from his regiment. Accompanied by Colonel Eads, I started at 9 p. m. on the 15th instant, my whole force being 220 strong. By a severe forced march of nearly 60 miles we reached Lexington early the following morning, drove in the rebel pickets without loss, and took possession of the town. We made from 60 to 70 prisoners, 60 stand of arms, 25 horses, 2 steam ferry-boats, a quantity of flour and provisions, a large rebel flag, and other articles of less value. The rebels fled in every direction.
The steamer Sioux City arrived at Lexington the following morning, and was seized by us. Our first care was to rescue our fellow-soldiers captured at Lexington by Price, viz, Colonel White, Colonel Grover, and some 12 or 15 others. We placed them on board the Sioux City with a guard, and dispatched them to Saint Louis. After administering the oath of allegiance to our prisoners we released them. As the rebels were recovering from their alarm, and beginning to surround us in force, we evacuated Lexington, after holding in thirty-six hours. As soon as the rebels wee satisfied of our departure they attacked our deserted camp with great energy.
We then proceeded to Warrensburg, making a few captures on our route. The evening of our arrival at Warrensburg we easily repulsed a slight attack, and by threatening to burn the town if again attacked, remained two days unmolested. We next proceeded to Warsaw, and are now on our route to Stockton.
Among the interesting articles taken at Lexington were Pirce's ambulance, Colonel Mulligan's saddle, and the flag I have the pleasure of sending you.
I have no casualties to report, and my men are all in good health, anxious for further service. I cannot commend in too high terms the faithfulness and courage of the officers and men detailed on this service from Colonel Ellis' First Missouri Cavalry, and the Irish Dragoons, commanded by Captain Naughton.
FRANK J. WHITE,
Major and A. D. C., Commanding First Squadron Prairie Scouts.