War of the Rebellion: Serial 019 Page 0849 Chapter XXV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - CONFEDERATE.

Search Civil War Official Records

and the positive instructions of the Secretary of State to myself and of the Secretary of War to Commissioner Hubbard; I paid them their annuity and interest without the right to do so, by law and took the receipts to the superintendent, who refused to receive the money, while I have no receipt from him. And now to pay the Indian troops, and even to feed them a week I must disobey the orders of General Hindman.

The pay of these troops is many months in arrears, and I have solemnly and repeatedly promised it to them as soon as the money is received from Richmond. Sent for on the 21st of March, it is not yet here. The supplies of these troops have been very scanty, and they are, by the fault of General Van Dorn and others, without clothing or shoes. They have no forage for their animals and little medicine for their sick. The son of Noah disclosed his father's nakedness, but we show those Indians our own, and it seems to me that no effort is spared to alienate them and lose the whole country. Troops withdrawn; arms, ammunition, and supplies seized; moneys unreasonably delayed, seized on the way, and at last all ordered to be sent out of the country. In what can such singular and incredible proceedings end? I cannot conceive why it should be necessary to make us again depend on an officer at Fort Smith. There is no department where there is as much economy and as few abuses as this. I have endeavored with all my might to get rid of these army worms-speculators. Go and silver, absolutely indispensable in small quantities, is not supplied at all and my quartermaster and commissary have been nearly all the time without paper. The former has had to resort to the issued of notes of his own, and even the money to redeem these is now ordered away.

I do not know that such consequences are desired or intended, but I do know that the result of the change now ordered will be to meet particular interests and support abuses. Owing to the particular nature of the Indian service, the extent of our dealings on credit, and the want of knowledge of forms and business of ninety officers in a hundred, my whole time is already occupied and my energies squandered on vexations details; unprecedented difficulties continually spring up in my way, and I am constantly occupied in devising means to make up for and obviate the consequences of the wrongs of others. I cannot endure it any longer if the ordinary frauds and embarrassments of war are to be much more augmented. I do not suppose that the receipt of a mere acting quartermaster for funds or property turned over would be of any value as a voucher. I shall not make use of any of his "purchasing agents" nor be saddled with any of his contracts, especially with any for hay and beef, nor shall I permit him to act in this department without reporting to me.

General Hindman has already virtually deprived me of my command by permitting Major Pearce to send orders direct to my quartermaster, commissary, and ordnance officers.

And, finally, I shall not allow Major Pearce to enforce martial law in the Indian country "within 5 miles of Fort Smith." None is needed in this country and there shall be none, nor shall Major Pearce, without my authority, impress anything in this department. If he does, I will arrest him. I do not permit it to be done by any one-Indian or white. We would soon have an Indian war if I did.

I have the honor to be, with great respect, your obedient servant,

ALBERT PIKE,

Brigadier-General, Commanding Department of Indian Territory.

54 R R-VOL XIII