whose fire was rapid and continuous, until 7 of the Indians were killed. None of our troops were injured. Subsequently the Indians demanded the bodies of their slain, which were accorded to them, and here the unfortunate affair closes for the present.
The facts given above I received from Captain [J.] Wilcox, which he may have already detailed to you. I make no comment upon them, further than to observe that it seems to me so unfortunate an affair as the killing of so many men at the time might, with prudent foresight, have been avoided; and, thinking thus, and seeing a strong probability that similar occurrences may transpire, I have recommended Captain Wilcox to keep one of his lieutenants at the important place of Niobrara, who it would seem would be likely to act with a greater degree of caution and a deeper sense of responsibility than an enlisted man seems likely to do. This course I believe the captain had determined to adopt.
I have the honor to remain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. H. HEATH,
Major and Chief of Cavalry and District Inspector.
Brigadier-General McKEAN, Omaha, Nebr.
DECEMBER 2-7, 1863.- Scout from Waldron to Mount Ida, Caddo Gap, and Dallas, Ark.
Numbers 1.- Colonel James M. Johnson, First Arkansas Infantry (Union).
Numbers 2.- Lieutenant Colonel Owen A. Bassett, Second Kansas Cavalry.
Numbers 3.- Major John M. Harrell, Brooks' Arkansas Cavalry.
Numbers 1. Report of Colonel James M. Johnson, First Arkansas Infantry (Union).
HEADQUARTERS FIRST ARKANSAS INFANTRY,
Waldron, Ark., December 7, 1863.
GENERAL: I have the honor to make the following report:
I started with my available force (mounted), consisting of the Second Kansas Cavalry, under Colonel [O. A.] Bassett, numbering 250 strong; one company (C), First Arkansas Infantry, under Captain [J. R.] Vanderpool, and two pieces of Rabb's battery, commanded by Sergt. George B. Sink. I took up the line of march at sunrise on the 2nd instant, and proceeded in the direction of Mount Ida, stopping a few hours on the evening of the 2nd to rest our stock We kept on, making no halt of consequence until we reached Mount Ida. We brought up there on the morning of the 4th instant, at 7 o'clock. Charging into town with my advance, found nothing there, but ascertained there was a small body of rebels left there the evening before. I halted my command in Mount Ida, and sent out small scouts in different directions, but could hear of nothing within striking distance.
On the following morning I inspected the stock of the battery and cavalry, and found that the battery horses were so much fatigued that they would not make Arkadelphia, the point I started for. I took them and the worn-out horses of the cavalry and returned to Waldron.
49 R R - VOL XXII, PT I