LITTLE ROCK, ARK., November 10, 1862.
Major General T. C. HINDMAN,
Commanding Corps d'Armee:
MY DEAR GENERAL: This move of Steele and Osterhaus from Ironton seems to change the whole programme. Whether they intend to invade or resist invasion I cannot tell. If the former, can you sustain yourself? If the latter, you certainly will not be able to attack them, as Steele and Osterhaus have at least 12,000 veteran troops, which, added to Schofield, will make them double our united strength. I am in great doubt what to do. The re-enforcement at Helena means probably the capture of the post to open the river when the water rises, and if the concentration at Springfield is confirmed and you think you can sustain yourself I will order McCulloch's division to Devall's Bluff. Write me fully your opinions, for I have great confidence in your judgment when you think maturely.
Colonel Johnson is just elected Senator-46 to 41-over Garland. He made a long speech to the Legislature, in which, I am told, he sustained you thoroughly and unconditionally. He had offered me his services, and I am going to send him to richmond for arms and money. He will leave here probably a week from to-day. I shall write by him fully to the President. Tell me at once if there are matters that you with represented.
As General Pike's resignation has been accepted, you had probably better released him from arrest as soon as he leaves the Indian country. Hereafter, I am informed, the military commandant in the Indian country is ex officio superintendent. Which will do better, Roane or Cooper? Answer this.
Colonel Johnson informs me that John Jumper is very much attached to Pike, and he fear that the late desertions from the Seminoles is on his (Pike's) account, though they say it is for the want of money promised and not paid. I suggest that it will be well to let Jumper pay his men. Do in this as you think best, but let the Indian troops be paid something. If the $750,000 sent you is not enough to pay all up to June 30 I will send more.
In regard to courts, order them and act on their proceedings; but I cannot call yours the Army of Missouri until it is certain you will go there. Whenever you start with a fair prospect of staying I will issue the order, giving you the name, with a God-speed.
I inclose a cadet's appointment for young Mitchell, son of the Senator. He has a military education and has served with credit. The farther would be greatly please if you will take him and assign him to duty near you, and as he has really been very active in aiding us in Richmond I will be much gratified if you will oblige him. He says, though your political opponent, he sustains you as a general, as Johnson does.
I am, general, yours, very truly,
THE. H. HOLMES,
P. S.-General Frost will leave here to-morrow or next day. He is, I believe, a good disciplinarian. Write to me what commands you have without generals. Two or three others are coming on, among them Hebert, Steele, and Scurry.
58 R R-VOL XIII