bers at over 40,000 men and 120 pieces of artillery. In my opinion it will not be pretend to rich a battle with our present force, and that we had better fall back to the Boston Mountain, in the direction of Fort Smith; you on the line road by the way of Camp Walker, and I by the Fayetteville road. The roads being so crowded with travelers will compel me to move my artillery and infantry in a day or two. I shall commence to-morrow to obstruct the roads in every manner possible so as to delay them, and give Arkansas as much time as can be gained by this means and a judicious use of my mounted force, to come ot our aid. If the enemy advance into Arkansas, I shall destroy all the mills and grain that I have to leave in my rear, having already done so on the roads toward Springfield, and hope you will pursue the same course. I find upon examination that my position on this road can be turned to the east, and knowing yours can be to the west, my opinion is that we had beater draw the enemy farther from his resources and nigher to where we can hope for re-enforcements.
Hoping my view may meet with your approbation, and that we may be able to check the enemy and soon to regain all that we are now compelled to abandon, I remain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
HEADQUARTERS MISSOURI STATE GUARD,
Camp near Pineville, November 10, 1861.
Brigadier General BEN. McCULLOCH, Commanding Confederate Forces:
GENERAL: Yours of this date (the 10th) has just been received. With the most earnest desire on my part to co-operate with you and the Confederate forces under your command to subserve the great course in which we have a common interest, I am constrained to differ from the line of action indicated in your letter. We have already fallen back to the extreme boundary of the State, for the sake of getting such a position and such assistance as would enable us to meet the enemy and ene the strife with one glorious and decisive victory. The south part of our State is exhausted with the presence and subsistence of friendly and hostile armaments. At every hazard I think we should give battle, and if compelled to fall back still farther, let us have a reason with which to satisfy our country that it was a necessity. Above all allow me to suggest that burning the mils and laying waste the country is an infliction as grievous as any that could be inflicted by the enemy, and our people could have little choice between being shot and starved to death, involving men, women, and children. If, as our gallant ally, upon more mature reflection you should determine to aid me with your brave troops, we will adopt such line of action as will compel the enemy to attack us in a short time. We can in that event, with the success I confidently anticipate, have all the troops in Missouri required for our defense.
May I beg the pleasure of a conference with you on the premises? Our men are all having their homes exposed to the desolating hand of the destroyer, and it will require something more than ordinary courage and self-sacrifice on their part to carry them willingly out of the State under these circumstances. All they have to fight for is at stake, and they would prefer the risk of death on the battle-field to abandon
47 R R-VOL III