I took this command, and they are many of them so useful they cannot be immediately dispensed with. They have been called out by the Governor or some of the local militia commanders according to orders from General Schofield, with a kind of understanding they are not to be paid, and as far as possible are to be maintained at the expense of the disloyal neighbors. The general plan seems to work well,but there are a great many poor men in this kind of service very willing to work for nothing who have not the clothes to work with.
General Schofield telegraphed yesterday that his advance had driven the rebels out of Pineville. They must therefore be out of the southwest corner, and it seems to me the enemy must go beyond Boston Mountains. General Schofield, however, still apprehends a stand and a fight, and orders forward tow more regiments from Springfield. I have cautioned the general not to be led off into a barren wilderness. If, as I think, the enemy must go beyond the mountains, he had better make a detour through the Indian country and back to Springfield with his main force. He has now about 15,000 men.
The detachment from Helena is arriving at Pilot Knob. When I arrived here there were only two field pieces and some 2,000 poorly organized troops at Pilot Knob to resist McBride's advance. The draft of artillery from Helena was especially necessary to make Pilot Knob tenable.
I shall soon be ready to move down from Pilot Knob against McBride, who it is said has about 5,000.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
SAML. R. CURTIS,
HDQRS. DEPT. OF THE MISSOURI, Numbers 7.
Saint Louis, Mo., October 12, 1862.
The combined forces of Missouri and Kansas, as an army corps in field, now commanded by Brigadier General J. M. Schofield, will be denominated the Army of the Frontier.
By command of Major-General Curtis:
H. Z. CURTIS,
Washington City, October 13, 1862.
Honorable CALEB B. SMITH,
Secretary of the Interior, Washington City:
SIR: The Secretary of War instructs me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of September 16, transmitting a copy of a letter from Mr. B. F. Lushbaugh, United States agent for the Pawnee Indians, asking for authority to arm this tribe and also to raise a volunteer regiment in the Territory of Nebraska.
In reply, you are respectfully informed that, your communication having been referred to the general-in-chief, he is of the opinion that the arming of these Indians without further proof of their friendly character would be of doubtful policy, even if no other objection existed; and that if the Territory of Nebraska can raise more than her quota of volunteers they should be received into the service of the United States