to the poison of the Governor's proclamation and a refutation of his statement that the Government had sacrificed the States west of the Mississippi River. General Hindman was therefore ordered to Little Rock to assume command, and was provided with all the ammunition, &c., that could be spared from this army. There were five or six regiments of troops already in Arkansas from Texas alone, and about fifteen regiments in the Confederate service on the march from that State to Little Rock to join them. Two gunboats were also sent up White and Arkansas Rivers. Already has General Hindman driven back the enemy, and from last accounts was in pursuit of them toward the northern portion of the State, having captured a considerable quantity of stores, &c.
These facts will be sufficient I think to set Governor Rector at rest, and to assure his people that the arteries of the Confederate Government do extend across the Mississippi River. I was a little surprised at this proclamation of the Governor, as I had previous to leaving Arkansas taken particular pains to explain to him the military necessity of the Army of the West joining General Beauregard at Corinth and the advantages that would accrue thereby to the Confederacy as a whole of which Arkansas would reap her share of course. He professed to understand them and gave his hearty concurrence to the measure. Why he has changed since in his views I can't imagine, unless the dung-hill policy of fighting at every States' threshold was too alluringly pressed upon him by shallow politicians, too weak to see beyond the door and too cramped in patriotism to go beyond it. I think the matter is now at rest, and that his proclamation is buried with the unwise things of the past and has left no sting behind.
I learned a day or two since that General Magruder had been ordered to the command of the Trans-Mississippi District, and immediately telegraphed to you not to send any one at present, as it would have a bad effect. General Price goes to-morrow to see you, and will explain all on the subject. I wish here to suggest to you, general, that the love of the people of Missouri is so strong for General Price, and his prestige as a commander there so great, that wisdom would seem to dictate that he be put at the head of affairs in the West. I see the alluring bait to my ambition-the fall of Saint Louis, the reclamation of a rich segment of our beloved South from the grip of the enemy, and the glory that might be mine, but I shut all this out from me because I think it is the best interest of the country to do so. I drop whatever glory there may be in it on the brow of General Price, than whom there is no one more worthy to wear it and than by whom I would rather see it worn.
Very truly, general, your friend and obedient servant.
EARL VAN DORN,
HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DISTRICT,
Little Rock, Ark., June 9, 1862
General S. COOPER, Adjutant-General:
GENERAL: Under ordinary circumstances I should address you through General Beauregard's headquarters, whose orders assigning me to this command are inclosed,* but situated as I am I trust this direct communication will be pardoned.
*Inclosures are copies of orders quoted in Hindman's report, p. 28.