War of the Rebellion: Serial 003 Page 0405 Chapter X. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION.

Search Civil War Official Records

WYANDOTTE, KANS., July 22, 1861.

Honorable SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War:

DEAR SIR: Owing to the danger on our southeastern frontier Governor Robinson is in that quarter endeavoring to protect our people as best he may. In his absence I feel compelled to lay before you the present condition of our State, hoping that we may obtain relief. We have no State arms; every effort to obtain them has thus far proved a failure. All of our volunteer troops in the United States service have been ordered from the State, and we are left wholly to the mercy of secession Missouri in the east, and an Indian frontier on our south and west, and not an arm or an ounce of ammunition to protect ourselves with. In this vicinity, and in fact all along the eastern border, we are constantly menaced by threatened attacks from Missouri.

Could we be supplied with some State arms, to be properly distributed among our State troops, we should feel perfectly secure. Can we, by any process whatever, obtain these?

Truly yours,

J. P. ROOT,

Lieutenant-Governor.

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT NORTH MISSOURI,

Saint Charles, July 23, 1861.

His Excellency SAMUEL J. KIRKWOOD, Governor of Iowa:

SIR: Your letter to General Hurlbut, with a communication from Colonel Bussey, has been transmitted to me. In reply to it I have to say that I most cordially accept the proffered aid in maintaining peace and quiet in those portions of North Missouri bordering on the Iowa line. In sending your State or other forceps into Missouri be pleased to intrust their command to discreet and prudent officers, who should be directed to keep me advised of all their operations, and who should inform me frequently of all matters of interest or importance connected with the condition of that region. It is not my purpose to make arrests for opinion's sake, but rather to force the people throughout this section to keep the peace among themselves, and to keep open their own lines of public communication. It is impossible that the Federal Government can employ for any length of time so large a force merely to protect public works against destruction by those for whose benefit they were built, and it is my purpose to offer such inducements to the citizens of this State as will be sufficient to secure their own active agency in protecting their lines of railroad and other works of public convenience or necessity. I have published a Notice to the people along the line of the North Missouri Railroad, which I intend also to apply to the Hannibal and Saint Joe Road, based on these views, a copy of which I herewith transmit.* As I shall enforce the penalty to the letter I hope to see good results follow before many days.

Your active interference in North Missouri will, I fear, be very shortly necessary, and in a stronger force than you suggest. The unfortunate repulse of our forces at Manassas has aroused the whole secession element in this State to renewed activity, and intelligence received this morning from Saint Louis has compelled me to suspend, for the present, further movements of the troops from this place in the direction of the Hannibal and Saint Joe Road.

---------------

* See p. 403.

---------------