Mr. Smith says they took his wife's silverware, furs, &c. He estimates the value of property taken from loyal citizens at $7,000; and, to cap the climax, they shot to death Mr. Richards, a good Union man, without cause or provocation.
He further states the people, except the strongest Union men, are going to Price's army for protection. The force engaged in this business is estimated at 300 or 400. At last accounts these banditti were about 50 miles from here. On my advice Mr. Smith started for Kansas to report these circumstances to General Huner and request him to take measures for the recovery of the stolen property.
I saw a letter from a lady this evening, which was full of taunts, and no doubt many people believe that Jenninson is carrying out the policy of our Government.
I would send out all my cavalry to bring in all these marauders, but we are in the midst of a very severe storm, and it is probable that they could not be overtaken within the limits of this State.
Very respectfully, colonel, your obedient servant,
Colonel, Commanding at Sedalia.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF KANSAS,
Fort Leavenworth, Kans., January 20, 1862.
Seventh Kansas Regiment, Leavenworth City:
SIR: I am instructed by the general commanding to inform you that he has read with surprise your reports of the 4th and 13th instant, detailing (that of the 4th) the burning of the town of Dayton, Mo., and (that of the 13th) the burning of the town of Columbus, in the same State.*
The general commanding finds no evidence in either report of a state of facts sufficient to warrant these extreme measures. Your reports therefore are disapproved and held in reserve for further consideration and action.
I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
CHAS. G. HALPINE,
Major and Assistant Adjutant-General.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI,
Saint Louis, January 20, 1862.
Major General GEORGE B. McCLELLAN,
General-in-Chief of the Army, Washington:
GENERAL: The cavalry sent to vicinity of Springfield found the enemy in force and were obliged to fall back to Waynesville. The whole force at Rolla was ordered in advance to re-enforce them and attack Price. Additional troops were ordered from here to Rolla, increasing General Curtis' army to about 12,000. I have just received a dispatch informing me that a council of Generals Curtis, Sigel, and Asboth had decided that they required six regiments in addition to those ordered. I can send no more at present from Saint Louis, and consequently have ordered General Pope to dispatch one division from
*See pp. 45, 46.