all directions on my approach, not giving me a chance to take any of them prisoner. On returning to Marshall I took 4 prisoners, who were reported to me to be jayhawkers.
I again started from Marshall on the 10th in the direction of Miami, to break up a company of recruits for Price's army, which was committing depredations in that neighborhood. I divided my force in small squads, sending them in several directions. One of these squads met a party of some 40 men and had a slight engagement, in which one of our men lost his horse and saddle. The enemy lost 1 man killed. Another squad brought in 6 prisoners, 1 breech-loading rifle, 2 double-barreled shot-guns, and 4 contraband horses. We also succeeded in finding two Government wagons, which were hid by a man by the name of R. McNeil. Said wagons were robbed from the Government some time last year by the rebel Captain Shelby. I had to leave these wagons at Marshall, not having sufficient horses to bring them here.
I was then on my way returning to Booneville when I received your dispatch ordering me immediately to Lexington, and I revolved to start the same night. We were marching about two hours, when it was reported to me that Sergeant Rheim, with 11 men, who were acting as advance guard, were cut off and taken prisoners, which fact, unfortunately, proved to be correct. I was at the same time advised that a large number of rebels were in ambush with the intention to attack us. Under such circumstances, with worn-out horses and poorly armed, I resolved to return to this place and prepared for Lexington via Sedalia.
* * * * * * *
JOHN B. KAISER,
Captain Co. A., Boonville Battalion, Missouri State Militia.
Commanding Boonville Battalion, Mo. S. M.
MARCH 8-9, 1862.- Operations about Rolla, Mo.
Report of Colonel Sempronius H. Boyd, Twenty-fourth Missouri Infantry.
Post Rolla, Mo., March 10, 1862.
CAPTAIN: Having learned from a reliable source that two men of the First Missouri Cavalry, on a visit home, living between here and Salem, were murdered a few days since by a small band of rebels, immediately on information of the fact I yesterday morning ordered Major Joslyn, First Missouri Cavalry, to proceed with 15 men of Wood's battalion on the road to Salem, scouting and breaking up any rebel bands found, &c. In accordance with the above, Major Joslyn proceeded a distance of 17 miles to the house of one Captain Pace, a notorious rebel character, who was reported at that time to have one of Bowen's men prisoner. The command took the captain's horse and another he had left there that morning; took one rifle and broke it. Learned that Coleman had a camp of 300 or 400 men about 100 miles from here, in Howell County, near West Plains. He also learned that bands of 6, 15, and 20 would rob, plunder, scatter, and then go to Coleman's camp with their ill-gotten stores.