SAINT LOUIS, July 18, 1862.
Colonel C. W. MARSH,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Saint Louis:
COLONEL: Having been requested by the general commanding to furnish such information in regard to the situation of affairs in the Eleventh Regiment Missouri State Militia, stationed at or near Hudson, Mo., as has come under my observation during the time I have been on duty with that regiment as its instructor, as well as to give an account of the late expedition under Colonel Lipscomb against a band of outlaws, and also to give a statement of the condition of the country in regard to the late disturbances and their probable causes, I would respectfully state that there are now numerous bands of outlaws and guerrillas infesting the northeast portion of this State, varying in number of from 10 to 300, robbing and murdering the loyal population of that district. These bands have of late become so numerous,daring, and reckless that Union people are again fleeing in alarm from their homes. In fact the situation of affairs in that part of the country, it is said by good Union men, is worse than it has ever been before.
Why this is so, and that too at this time, when every other portion of the Stake is getting comparatively quieter and again assuming its former prosperous condition, is difficult for me to determine.
I am inclined to believe however that the answer as regards the cause of this, as it seems simultaneous, uprising might be found in either of the following question:
1st. Is the Federal force sent there too small?
2nd. Are the troops inefficient? or,
3rd. Are the officers disloyal?
In answer to the first question, there are as far as I can judge about 1,200 robbers and bushwhackers in the Northeast District. The force at the disposal of the commanding officer of that district is about 2,000, and consequently enough for the suppression of all the crimes committed by these hands.
It is hardly necessary to answer the second question, as every officer must have witnessed the ardor and eagerness of the men at various times when engaged with the pillagers of their homes.
Are the officers disloyal?
In answer to this question I ask the following:
1st. How as it that, when during the last skirmish a notorious bushwacker was captured who was known to have taken the oath of allegiance and who when being brought before thirteen officers for trial and speedy punishment - how was it that Major Pledge, of Colonel McNeil's regiment, shirked from his duty and begged to be excused from officiating as president?
2nd. Why did the other officers hesitate to act in the matter and ask to be relieved in regard to this case and acknowledge their obligation to Colonel Lipscomb when he yielded to their wish?
3rd. Why did Colonel Lipscomb yield to the request of these men at all?
4th. Why was it that he released a dangerous rebel, who not only had fed the band of which the expedition was in pursuit, but who actually went to their camp and informed the robbers of the approach of the troops and thus enabled them to escape?
(This rebel had taken the oath and given bond,and when his treachery became known, the next morning Major J. B. Rogers arrested him, and, as I said, was released.)