I have the honor to report that the available force under my command in the field is as follows: The First and Second Brigades, under the command respectively of General Salomon and Colonel Weer, and now south of Carthage, Mo., number 3,500 effective men, including two regiments of infantry and eighteen pieces of artillery. The Third Brigade, which left his place last night to join General Salomon by forced marches, numbers about 2,000 men, with eight pieces of artillery. The foregoing includes the Cherokee Indians mustered into service, and which I may here remark make good soldiers. The Second Ohio Cavalry, who are mostly dismounted (their horses being unserviceable), are at this post, except 150, who have been detailed to man a battery, and about 75 as body guard with General Salomon. This regiment, with two companies of the Third Wisconsin and two fragmentary companies of the First United States Infantry, will remain for the protection of this post, where I have quite a large amount of Government stores, and which must be the base of operations for this district. Five companies of cavalry and four of operations for this district. Five companies of cavalry on the border of Kansas, south of the Kansas River. Eight companies of the Third Eleventh Kansas (new regiment) is now on its way from Fort Leavenworth by forced marches to this place, and will be here to-morrow evening and proceed immediately south. The Twelfth and Thirteenth Kansas (also new regiments) are now receiving their arms, and will be in the field at the earliest moment possible. Four additional pieces of artillery will accompany the Eleventh Regiment south from this place. The three new regiments referred to are over 900 strong each (infantry), and of the very best material, and will add much to the efficiency of the force under my command, as I have been greatly deficient in that arm of the service. When the regiments are in the field I will have a fighting force to operate in Southwest Missouri, after leaving my rear protected, of at least 8,000.
I have been greatly embarrassed in pushing offensive operations in the field against the enemy in consequence of the delay of arms for the new infantry regiments, and which force it was necessary I should have, to support my artillery, before risking a general engagement. I shall leave here this evening, accompanied by my staff, for active operations in the field, and shell not sleep until I have joined General Salomon and Colonel Weer. Late information received from them indicates that a general engagement cannot be long delayed, and I can assure you, general, that nothing shall be wanting on my part to make the campaign against the large rebel force now complete. I will at a future time report more fully in detail the condition of affairs under my charge, especially matters pertaining to Indian Territory, where prompt measures are necessary to save that country from destruction by rebel rule, and save the thousands of loyal refugees, mostly women and children (the men being in the service), from complete destruction.
I have the honor to be, general, your most obedient servant,
JAS. G. BLUNT,