John Richay, esqrs., to raise two regiments from such loyal Indians as have been driven from their own country into Kansas by other Indians in rebellion against the United States Government. These regiments are to be raised for the purpose of restoring their lands to the loyal Indians and offering them protection while planting their corps. The colonels of these regiments will report to you for instructions when their command shall have been completely organized. When this shall have been done it is the desire of the Secretary of War that you furnish two regiments of volunteers to aid these Indian troops in effecting the purpose for which they are to be raised.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF THE MISSISSIPPI,
New Madrid, April 5, 1862.
Commodore ANDREW H. FOOTE:
Your note of yesterday is just received.* Captain Walke arrived safely with the Carondelet, not a shot having touched her. Officers and men are in good condition and anxious for service. I requested Colonel Scott, Assistant Secretary of War, to write you yesterday in relation to sending another one of the gunboats, and, with profound respect, I venture to urge you still further on the subject. I have not a doubt but that one of them could run the batteries to-night without any serious injury. Notwithstanding their inferior character, the enemy's gunboats pass and repass our batteries in the night without injury. My best artillerists, officers of the Regular Army, of many years' service, state positively that it is impossible in the night to fire with any kind of certainly the large guns, 32s, of our batteries, especially at a moving object. The guns fired at the Carondelet passed 200 feet above her. I am thus urgent, sir, because the lives of thousands of men and the success of our operations hang upon your decision. With the two boats all is safe; with one, it is uncertain. The lives of the men composing this army are in my keeping, and I do not feel justified in omitting any steps to fortify this movement against any accident which might occasion disaster not to be repaired. Certainly the risk to a gunboat moving down in the night is not nearly so great and involves no such consequences as the risk to 10,000 men crossing a great river in the presence of the enemy. You will excuse me, I sure, if I seem urgent. A sense of duty alone impels me to present the facts to you as forcibly as possible.
I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSISSIPPI,
Saint Louis, April 5, 1862.
I shall want a gunboat at Cairo ready to go up the Tennessee in the early part of next week. War Department has authorized the purchase
* Not found.