General Price, be assigned there speedily to organize for our own defense, and that General Van Dorn be taken away from us. We protest against him as our commander in the name of our people, and we appeal to you, who alone can relieve and protect us.
3rd. We ask that all the supplies, arms, ammunition, public works, machinery, and materials of every character taken from Little Rock and Fort Smith may be ordered back from Napoleon or Vicksburg to Little Rock, to await the orders of your general of the department.
4th. That the telegraph wire from Little Rock to Fort Smith be required to be again put upon the poles and the line immediately reconstructed.
5th. We also hope and pray that any of the troops who may not yet have left Arkansas may be ordered to remain there, and that all those from Arkansas, Texas, and Missouri already in Tennessee may be ordered back as soon as may be possible consistent with your judgment of public interest.
6th. We earnestly pray that you will order forward a goodly supply of arms, ammunition, and military stores by way of the Arkansas and White Rivers before the Mississippi is closed against us; and, in conclusion, we will express, as we feel, a respectful reliance and confidence that in our present strait and with the palpable disastrous prospects ahead of us, we will not appeal in vain to your foresight and justice in behalf of a feeble State against the injustice and impolicy on so many important points of stripping us, who are the weak, to arm, strengthen, and defend the strong. A vast deal could also be said upon the public policy and the political features of this system which impoverishes and disarms Arkansas and the west of the Mississippi, but we prefer to confine ourselves to the direct rights and the decided and immediate interests of our own State.
We are, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. W. JOHNSON,
CHAS. B. MITCHELL,
G. D. ROYSTON
T. B. HANLY.
FELIX I. BATSON.
HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DISTRICT,
Devall's Bluff, Ark., April 15, 1862.
Colonel LOUIS HEBERT.
Commanding First Brigade, First Division:
COLONEL: I am instructed by Major-General Van Dorn, commanding this district, to request that you will remain at this place until all the troops now here and the last of your own brigade have left, to superintend the shipment to Memphis of all the troops and stores now here or which may arrive with your brigade, and then proceed to Memphis and report to the general commanding this district.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, yours,
DABNEY H. MAURY,
HELENA, ARK., April 15, 1862.
Major General STERLING PRICE, Memphis, Tenn.:
GENERAL: My men are collecting rapidly, and when my train, which is at Des Arc, is sent around I will be ready for an organization and