War of the Rebellion: Serial 009 Page 0563 Chapter XXI. THE CALIFORNIA COLUMN.

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My wagons are so shrunk in coming over the desert that I am obliged to delay here until the 1st proximo, when from the rains having fallen I hope to be able to move to the Rio Grande. I hope I can count on getting meat and bread there. Mesilla is far removed from my source of supply. Pray advise me of all this.

I am anxious to co-operate with you. My men are the finest material I have ever seen and anxious to strike a blow for the cause.

Have you a plenty of rifled-musket ammunition?

We can be on the Rio Grande in fifteen days from this post.

Respectfully, &c.,

JAMES H. CARLETON,

Colonel First California Volunteers, Commanding.

P. S.-I am straining every point to get up supplies so as to leave July 1.

[Inclosure E.]

HEADQUARTERS COLUMN FROM CALIFORNIA,

Tucson, Ariz., June 17, 1862.

Lieutenant Colonel EDWARD E. EYRE,

First Cavalry, California Volunteer, Present:

COLONEL: It is important that a forced reconnaissance be made in advance of the column from the Rio Grande, and you are selected fro this delicate and at the same time hazardous duty.

You will take with you for this purpose a squadron of your regiment, to be composed off all the effective officers and men of Congress B and C now here.

For transportation you will have three six-mule teams. Take six aparejos in the wagons for packing purposes when necessary. Take, say, four days's pork, an dried beef and pemmican, and flour, coffee, sugar, salt, and vinegar for thirty days. Take 70 pounds of ammunition for the Sharp's carbines per man, and 30 rounds per man of navy-revolver ammunition. You should have at least 6 pick-axes and 12 long-handled shovels as intrenching tools.

Acting Assistant Surgeon Kittredge will accompany you.

All other essentials of your outfit will readily suggest themselves to you. When you bear in mind that you are always to be ready to fight, with your horses in the best possible condition, all, and only all, you mind.

You go to watch the road in the direction of the enemy. If possible you will capture or drive in his pickets, and observe and report upon his situation, strength, movements, and apparent purposes. To do this successfully the greatest prudence, sagacity, forecast, and boldness are necessary. I hardly assure you that I have the fullest confidence in your ability to carry the purpose of your reconnaissance to the most useful results.

Avoid collision with the Indians. Of course you will report back to me all that it is necessary for me to know.

Wishing you success, I am, colonel, very sincerely, yours,

JAMES H. CARLETON,

Colonel First California Volunteers, Commanding.