The general commanding expects frequent reports in relation to your own proceedings, as well as of the strength and movements of the enemy.
J. C. FREMONT,
Ironton, Mo., August 15, 1861.
Captain JOHN C. KELTON, Assistant Adjutant-General:
SIR: I have to-day to note the arrival of two regiments of infantry - Colonel Lauman, Seventh Iowa Regiment, and Colonel Thayer, First Nebraska Regiment. I have also ordered the Twenty-first Regiment Illinois Volunteers, under Colonel Alexander, forward upon the Greenville road, and Colonel Frederick Hecker, Twenty-fourth Illinois Volunteers, upon the Fredericktown road, taking five days' rations, with instructions to form a conjunction at Brunot. I expect to follow to-morrow with artillery, should any arrive, a few companies of infantry, and more provisions, if means of transportation can be procured; otherwise I shall send teams back from Brunot or Greenville for additional rations.
I purchased to-day sixteen wagons and sixty-eight mules, subject to the approval of Major-General Fremont. These teams are well adapted for our use - more suitable and more efficient than those which we have heretofore employed or found in the service of this command. I shall to-morrow purchase five more wagons and twenty mules on the same terms. The teams which I have conditionally purchased have been for some time in the service of the Government without charge if now purchased; otherwise to receive compensation.
Requisitions were made upon Quartermaster McKinstry some days since for camp equipage, & c., but as yet I have received nothing. At this time I have not a single tent for my headquarters, nor is there any stationery in the quartermaster's department.
Several prisoners now in my charge I shall at the earliest convenience send to the arsenal, with charges accompanying.
Since writing the above a messenger has come in from a spy I have out, who reports the rebel force much greater than has heretofore been represented - from 25,000 to 30,000. The spy mentioned is an officer in disguise. From representations made by the messenger, the information which has caused them to retreat was obtained from a preacher of this place, who managed to get out of camp, and is now back again, without a pass. I have ordered his arrest, and will have him sent to Saint Louis if caught.
I shall move with the detachments of my command, viz, the Twenty-first and Twenty-fourth Illinois Regiments, towards Brunot subject to any order from your department, and will report as often as practicable.
U. S. GRANT,
IRONTON, MO., August 16, 1861.
Captain JOHN C. KELTON,
Asst. Adjt. General, U. S. Army, Saint Louis, Mo.:
SIR: I have just received a message from one of my spies, stating that last night the rebels returned to the ground retreated from by them