HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF NEW MEXICO,
Santa Fe, N. Mex., August 11, 1862.
Brigadier General JAMES H. CARLETON,
Commanding Column from California, District of Arizona:
GENERAL: At an early period of last year I reported than an invasion of Texas from New Mexico, although practicable, was not a practicable undertaking; the length of the march, the desert character of the country to be traversed the scarcity of supplies on the route, the necessity from the Missouri River or from the Pacific coast every article of equipment and munition and much of the food, all conspired to make it an undertaking of great magnitude and of questionable value; and that the troops that would be required for the expedition could be more usefully employed at points that are not only near the sources of supply but near the points to be attacked. The same views appeared to have been entertained at the Headquarters of the Army, as before my report could have reached Washington I received instructions to withdraw first a part and afterward the whole of the regular force then in New Mexico. These last instructions were subsequently so modified as to direct the withdrawal of these troops "at such time and in such manner as would not expose the Territory to conquest or invasion before the volunteer troops of New Mexico are properly organized, armed, and posted?
At a later period I reported that it would be difficult, if not impracticable, to raise the additional force authorized for this Territory; nor do I think it desirable that it should be done if it is practicable to send one or two volunteer regiments the East to replace the regular troops when they are withdrawn. The New Mexican Volunteers, unless supported by regular troops or by volunteers drawn some other section of the country, cannot be relieved on to resist invasion of the Territory if one is attempted.
When a force from the Department of the Mississippi was under orders for this department I received instructions from the Secretary of War to disband the New Mexican Volunteers whenever I thought proper. The force from the Department of the Mississippi was subsequently diverted from its destination, and soon after information was received that your command was on the march. I have coupled these changes with the instructions for the movements of the regular troops, and supposed that your command was intended for service in New Mexico. Acting upon this supposition, I have reported that "the near approach of General Carleton's force justifies the opinion that the regular troops may now be withdrawn, as originally intended, without detriment to the service," and have already made some arrangements for the movement; but as there have been some material changes since these instructions were given, I do not intend to put any of the regular troops beyond the reach of recall until I receive further instructions. I have been thus particular, not only for the purpose of answering your question, but to indicate the policy and instructions under which I have been acting, and which I suppose will devolve upon you when the regular troops leave the country.
In the arrangements that were made for the reoccupation of Arizona it was my intention to restore the sovereignty of the United States in its original integrity, post the troops so as to protect the inhabitants and guard against invasion, and, in addition, to occupy such points in Texas as could be reached without throwing the troops so employed