cannot move in more than two columns, and for a real move he will most likely mass all his force in one. I send orders for Steele to move up this way, if he has not already moved on Little Rock. I have called for more of the new levies, which I hope General Halleck will grant. Our pickets we attacked near Greenville last night. Boyd thinks McBride is approaching with a large force. Cannot waken Rolla till I learn more of McBride's move, as I may have to draw from Rolla to help Boyd. Keep small pickets or scouts east of you, to run in if assailed.
SAML. R. CURTIS,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI, Saint Louis, Mo., September 27, 1862.
Brigadier General JAMES G. BLUNT:
GENERAL: Your command is now within this department, and in view of the enemy's advance should be combined with the forces under General Schofield. Move all the force you can, so as to unite with him or be within supporting distance.
I hope General Lane is with you, and that he will be so situated as to take a hand in the matter.
Keep your force within close proximity. The enemy is reported to be strong. Obey any orders sent you by General Schofield, and direct your matters to a complete organization sufficient to drive back 30,000 or 40,000.
I will send copies of this in different ways to secure early and certain transmission.
Report to me very often by the most certain route.
If you design continuing in the field, appoint or designate careful men for Leavenworth and Fort Scott, if you deem it necessary to hold this latter point.
Not knowing your force or your views I advance mine, with a hope you will soon give me full details. Be careful to keep the number of your forces from being know to outsiders. Contractors and commissary officers should be cautioned.
Until you are united with General Schofield report to me. It is not my purpose unite forces to meet emergencies.
SAML. R. CURTIS,
Major-General, Commanding Department.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF MISSOURI, Saint Louis, Mo., September 27, 1862.
Brigadier General FRED. STEELE:
GENERAL: Since I made the order and sent out dispatches, which will go by the steamer War Eagle, I have seen your dispatch to Schofield, saying you would move on Little Rock. If you have moved beyond 20 miles when this reaches you, go ahead at least to White River. If what is stated here be true there is little or no force left at Little Rock, and if such be your information, when you get to Devall's Bluff send forward a cavalry or light force to take that place, destroy military stores, and bring away archives, if any such things are left by the rebels,