The Southern Overland Mail Route has been opened, and the military posts in Arizona, Southern New Mexico, and Northwestern Texas have been reoccupied by troops composing the Column from California. Thus far the instructions of the general commanding the Department of the Pacific have been carried out.
It was no fault of the troops from California that the Confederate forces fled before them. It is but just to say that their having thus fled is mainly to be attributed to the gallantry of the troops under General Canby's attributed to the gallantry of the troops under General Canby's command. That they were hurried in their flight by the timely arrival of the advance guard of the Column from California, under Lieutenant-Colonel Eyre, there cannot be a doubt. The march from the Pacific to the Rio Grande by the Column from California was not accomplished without immense toil and great hardships or without many privations and much suffering from heat and want ot water.
The amount of labor performed by Colonel Joseph R. West, the second in command, was immense and of the greatest practical importance. Much of our success was dependent on his energy, perseverance, cheerfulness, and high soldierly qualities. I cannot too strongly recommend that this officer be promoted to the grade of brigadier-general of volunteers as a reward for these services, and particularly as he now commands the most important district in this department. I trust that General Wright will urge the necessity of this advancement of Colonel West, and set forth to the General-in-Chief his eminent fitness for the office of brigadier-general. This will promote Lieutenant-Colonel Rigg, which will be a reward his important services as commanding officer at Fort Yuma during the past winter and for his efficient labors in the column while crossing the Great Desert. I regard Colonel Rigg as one of the finest soldiers in the Column from California. Those who knew the troops from California as I knew them will consider this a high compliment.
Lieutenant Colonel Edward E. Eyre, First California Volunteer Cavalry, deserves a regiment. The zeal he has manifested in the discharge of his duties and the alacrity and cheerfulness he has always shown when called upon for any hazardous enterprise distinguished him as one eminently fitted for the profession of arms. If five companies more of cavalry are to sent from California, as requested by General Canby, I trust they will be added to the five which now compose the First California Volunteer Cavalry, and that Lieutenant-Colonel Eyre will be commissioned as full colonel.
The services of Major Coult, Fifth California Volunteer Infantry, and of Major Ferguson, First California Volunteer Cavalry, and of Major-McMullen, First California Volunteer Infantry, have bee most arduous and are deserving of reward.
The officers and men of the Second California Volunteer Cavalry and of the Fifth California Volunteer Infantry shared alike in all the privations and toil encountered by the First California Volunteer Infantry and the First California Volunteer Cavalry. As soldiers, in the highest acceptation of that work, they were all equally subordinate, patient, energetic, and patriotic. If I should select the names of some of them to be rewarded for these high qualities it would be an invidious distinction.
Captain John B. Shinn and First Lieutenant Franklin Harwood, of the Third U. S. Artillery, for their incessant toil by night and by day to bring the battery of light artillery which is attached to the Column from California through the Yuma and Gila Deserters, should each