War of the Rebellion: Serial 008 Page 0463 Chapter XVIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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that these forces numbered about 5,000. Had the expedition moved twelve hours sooner it would probably have caught the whole. General Pope was held in readiness some forty-eight hours, but the general commanding north of the river failed to keep me informed of his movements. The result, however, is satisfactory, as the enemy was completely broken up and deprived of most of his supplies.

Recent events have proved that the information received soon after I assumed the command, that an insurrection of some 12,000 or 15,000 armed men had been organized north of the Missouri River, was correct. The two expeditions sent from Saint Joseph and Jefferson City through the river counties broke up a part of this organization and forced those who had already taken arms to move south, where they were captured and scattered by Pope's forces. The insurrection in Lincoln, Pike, Ralls, Monroe, and Adrian Counties broke out before they heard of the capture of the rebels at Shawnee Mound and Milford. The burning of the railroad bridges and destruction of the telegraph lines formed a part of the plan. I had anticipated this, and directed General Prentiss to have the railroad bridges well guarded before he went to Saint Joseph. these orders were probably very imperfectly executed. Had I moved General Pope's command at Sedalia against Price before partially breaking up these insurrectionary organizations I should have had some 15,000 insurgents in his rear, without the means of re-enforcing him, on account of the destruction of the railroads and telegraphs. As it is the, the insurrection is pretty well crushed out; the injuries to the roads will not materially affect our military operations, and Price's army is completely cut off from all hopes of re-enforcements or supplies. He is believed to be still in the vicinity of Osceola, in such a position that I cannot well reach him or get in his rear, as he is nearer to the Arkansas line than I ma, and even than I am to him. I am satisfied that he will retreat the moment I make a move, and as a majority of the people are secessionists, he is kept fully advised of everything I do. It is barely possible that I may throw a large cavalry force in his rear and flank so as to greatly embarrass his retreat, but unfortunately our cavalry is but half armed. I am waiting most impatiently for the 11,000 arms you promised, hoping that they may partly supply the wants of the cavalry arm. The forces at Rolla are ready, and will move the moment that arms are received. Price's army will certainly be driven out of the State, and possibly, though not very probably, a portion of it may be captured.

These bridge burnings are the most annoying features of the war. They are effected by small parties of mounted men, disguised as farmers, but well armed. They overpower or overawe the guards, set fire to the bridges, and escape before a force can be collected against them. Examples of severe punishment are the only remedies. I shall carry out in this respect my General Orders, Numbers 32, inclosed herewith.

If I receive arms in time to carry out my present plans in Missouri I think I shall be able to strongly re-enforce Cairo and Paducah for ulterior operations by the early part of February.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,






Saint Louis, December 22, 1861.

I. Insurgent rebels scattered through the northern counties of this State, which are occupied by our troops, under the guise of peaceful