War of the Rebellion: Serial 008 Page 0503 Chapter XVIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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WELLSVILLE, MO., January 2, 1862.

Colonel J. C. KELTON,

Asst. Adjt. General, Dept. of the Missouri, Saint Louis, Mo.:

COLONEL: I have the honor to urgently request the immediate action of the commanding general upon a matter which I regard of vital importance.

Upon my arrival at Warrenton I found a battalion of Reserve Corps Cavalry, under command of Major Hollan, the only cavalry at my disposal. These men had preceded me only a few days, but they had already murdered one of the few Union men in that vicinity and committed numerous depredations upon the property of peaceful citizens. Since that time their conduct has been absolutely barbarous-a burning disgrace to the army and to the Union cause. In spite of all my efforts to the contrary they have plundered and destroy the property of citizens (many of them the best Union men in the State) to the amount of many thousands of dollars. Their officers either connive at it or else have no power to restrain their men. I cannot trust them out of my sight for a moment, and of course they are of no use to me as cavalry so long as this is the case. I have succeeded in detecting five of the robbers and have them in irons and have arrested the major and one of the captains and placed them in close confinement.

I have placed Lieutenant Sheldon, of my staff, in command f the two companies in this place, but I cannot long spare him from his proper duties, and there are still three companies at other posts, and it is beyond my power to prevent their acts of robbery if I make any use of them. No doubt there are some god m en in this battalion, but as a class they are well-mounted and well-armed barbarians.

I am told there is at Benton Barracks a considerable force of god mounted men without arms. I therefore urgently request that a battalion of them be sent to me without arms or horses, and that I be authorized to dismount and disarm Major Hollan's battalion and send it to Saint Louis. If something of the kind is not done soon there will be very few Union men in this part of the State.

I will as soon as possible forward charges against Major Hollan, Captain Winkel, and the men I have arrested.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brigadier-General, U. S. Volunteers.


Saint Louis, January 14, 1862.

Major General GEORGE B. McCLELLAN,

General-in-Chief of the Army, Washington:

GENERAL: I have received a dispatch from General Smith at Paducah, dated the 11th, saying that he has reliable information from Columbus to the 10th that no troops have left that place for Bowling Green save the two regiments reported two weeks ago, except part of a regiment of cavalry which has crossed into Missouri.

The demonstration which General Grant is now making I have no doubt will keep them in check till preparations can be made for operations on the Tennessee or Cumberland. I sent three infantry regiments to Cairo yesterday and have two more ready to-morrow, but the ice