a little. I take it for granted Major Wright is incorporated in your command and cordially co-operating with you.
Very truly, yours,
SAML. R. CURTIS,
Brigadier-General, Commanding Southwestern District.
ROLLA, January 14, 1862.
Captain J. C. KELTON,
CAPTAIN: I am in receipt of the general's autographic letter of the 12th and his telegraph half past eleven of last night. The excessive cold weather has checked the forward movement of the rebels, but the day is bright and wind shifting, so I look for better weather and consequent danger to my cavalry. I have at the same time ordered the cavalry to fall back slowly and cautiously to meet the other arms. In this way I shall keep matters in reach of the full instructions which are promised in the general's letter.
In relation to transportation, I send my Special Orders, Numbers 12. I shall earnestly labor to keep within the general's rule in this respect. I would consider the U. S. Reserve Corps safe at Pacific. They are coming down and I think will soon be all right. I would indulge a good many in leaves of absence to go for five days to visit their families. Those who have gone to Saint Louis without leave before I can here should be severely treated, so as to discourage such insubordination.
I wish two or three companies of Almstedt's fort artillery could come and take charge of this fort, with a field officer as commander of the fort.
The train is waiting.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
SAML. R. CURTIS,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI,
Saint Louis, January 14, 1862.
Major General GEORGE B. McCLELLAN,
General-in-Chief of the Army, Washington:
GENERAL: Advices received from scouts and spies who have been in the enemy's camps lead to the belief that Price's pretended retreat was a ruse, intended to deceive us. He fell back rapidly from Osceola to Springfield, giving out the report that he was intending to retire to winter quarters in Arkansas. It was expected that on receiving information of this retreat we would withdraw the mass of our forces at Rolla and Sedalia for operations against Columbus. As soon as this had been done Price was to return with re-enforcements from Arkansas and march rapidly to Lexington and Jefferson City. In the man time his emissaries were to destroy all railroad bridges and telegraph lines, so as to prevent our sending troops against him. This city was at the same time to be set on fire at different places, and a general insurrection was to break out here and in all the northern counties of this State. The time of the burning of the bridges was determined by private signals, of which we have discovered thousands scattered through the