general sort) of what the other intends, I venture on intruding some outlines of the condition of affairs in this department on your attention. It seems, from all the evidence before me, that Senator J. H. Lane has been trading at Washington on a capital partly made up of his own Senatorial position and partly of such scraps of influence as I may have possessed in the confidence or esteem of the President, said scraps having been " jayhawked" by the Kansas Senator without due consent of the proper owner.
In the other words, I find that "Lane's great Southern expedition" was entertained and sanctioned by the President under misrepresentations made by somebody to the effect that said "expedition" was the joint design and wish of Senator Lane and myself. Mr. Lincoln doubtless thought he was obliging me and aimed to oblige me in the matter, but so little was I personally consulted, that to this hour I am in ignorance what were the term or striking points of Senator Lane's programme. Never to this hour has Senator Lane consulted me on the subject directly or indirectly, while the authorities at Washington have preserved a similar indiscreet reticence, thinking no doubt (as General Thomas intimates in a recent letter) that as the plan was of my own concoction in joint committee of two with Senator Lane, there could be no use, but rather an impertinence, in any third party's trying to explain the general drift and details to one of the original patentees.
Thus I am left in ignorance, but it is more than probable that you have been more favored.
Your co-operation certainly would be necessary to make effective any such expedition as that talked of, and as you have never been suspected of enjoying Senator Lane's confidence and sharing his counsels, I think it more than probable that the veil of mystery must have been lifted in your particular case. If so, let me know, for otherwise, I must lower myself in the estimation of the authorities at Washington by confessing that I have never at any time, directly, consulted with or been consulted by the Kansas Senator in reference to this or any other military operation whatever, and that as to any brotherly confidence between us there is just about as much now as there ever was.
You can hardly conceive to what an extent the authorities at Washington have carried their faith in the representations of Mr. Lane and their belief in a sort of Damon and Pythias affection between that gentleman and myself. Regiments have been sent here with orders to "report for duty with the forces under Colonel J. H. Lane;" blanks telegraphed for by me have been shipped to "Brigadier-General Lane, Fort Leavenworth," and have never reached these headquarters. In fact, I may say that, so far as Washington was concerned, the Kansas Senator would seem to have effectually "jayhawked" out of the minds of the War Department any knowledge or remembrance of the general commanding this department.
And now we have reached an aspect of the case which would be intensely ludicrous, if it were not so fraught with humiliation to officials and detriment to the public service. I am daily receiving letters from majors, colonels, and lieutenant-colonels announcing that they have been appointed additional aides-de-camp on the staff of General McClellan, with orders to report to me in person, that I may again order them to report on the staff of "Brigadier General J. H. Lane.'
The trouble is that I know of no such brigadier-general, Senator Lane having told me expressly and in terms, at the only interview we have had since his return to Kansas, that he had not accepted his commission, and was only my visitor "as a Senator and member of the Military