HEADQUARTERS FOURTH BRIGADE, Mount Vernon, September 20, 1862.
Brigadier General JAMES TOTTEN,
Commanding Southwest District, Springfield, Mo.:
The lasts reports by scouts that arrival to-day do not show any change in their position for the past five days.
Coffee and Shelby are 10 miles south of Newtonia, at widow Witherspoon's; force 2,200. Rains and Carroll camped south of Elkhorn; camped on a flat (the artillery on the hill south of the camp) on both sides of the road. A rumor states that they have moved west and toward Pineville, but it is mere rumor. Force variously stated at 8,000 to 15,000; probably not over 10,000. General Hindman has moved his headquarters to Yellville, and is reported to have gone to Little Rock on business, only temporarily absent. A notorious jayhawking preacher by the name of Turner, of Gadfly, was 7 miles south of this place a few days ago in company with three others and one of our spies. In the night the spy stole part of their arms-two guns, a revolver, and an immense bowie-knife of Turner. With the knife and pistol he attacked the party, stabbed Turner twice fatally, shot one of the others in the breast, and the other two men ran away. The story is true; Turner was taken home in a dying condition. He claimed to the spy that he had killed -- Union men and intended to make it 50, in revenge for the shooting of one of his associates by the name on Montgomery by Captain --, of Third Missouri State Missouri States Militia, in July.
Your messenger to Colonel Salomon passed here last evening about 8 o'clock.
I am, truly, your obedient servant,
E. B. BROWN,
SAINT LOUIS, MO., September 20, 1862.
Following dispatch received from Boyd:
Captain Hagan, commanding a scout of two companies, has returned. Reports McBride, with 2,000 men, 8 miles this side of Pocahontas; a force also at Smithville, and 3 miles below Pocahontas another force. McBride has five pieces of artillery. The captain brings with him a returned prisoner of Steele's command. He says troops are scattered from Little Rock to Pocahontas, and are concentrating near Pocahontas and Smithville to wait for Price or Hindman. Boyd's dispatches stop here.
I am fitting Backof's and Stange's batteries as rapidly as I can. As I said to you, Fisk's regiment leaves for Rolla on Monday. Will you authorize me to have raised another light battery? It has been suggested to me that the main movement may be on the southeast, as the counties beyond Rolla cannot furnish supplies to the rebels. I will work out carefully. Three more companies of Cavender's go to the Cape on Sunday.
SAINT LOUIS DIVISION, September 21, 1862-5 p.m.
Order received. I will push forward to-night and to-morrow three