HEADQUARTERS, Helena, Ark., December 26, 1862.
Major H. Z. CURTIS, Assistant Adjutant-General:
MAJOR: Last Thursday week, McCulloch was ordered with 8,000 Arkansas and Texas troops to Vicksburg from his camp at Brownsville, Ark. He started and got as far as Little Rock, when he was turned back by orders from Hindman and Holmes to go to the relief of Hindman, who was being pursued by Blunt and Herron, and threatened by others. Deserters heard that Schofield was also moving toward Little Rock. There are from 5,000 to 10,000 troops at Post Arkansas, with eight guns, of which four are large and four are field pieces, all en barbette. Hindman has not to exceeded 12,000 men, and they are said to be in bad condition. Some forces have lately arrived at Little Rock from Texas, making about 4,000 at that point. General Hawes is camped about 1 miles from Devall's Bluff, on a lake, with three regiments of cavalry and four pieces of artillery (two 6-pounders rifled and two 6-pounders smooth-bore). One regiment, seven days ago, crossed the White River in small boats to this side, which I will take care of; it may come within 30 miles of here. An express came from Vicksburg to Holmes to send all the troops he could spare to that point; but never have been sent, unless it has been within the last seven days. The rebel force in Arkansas has a line of communication between napoleon, Ark., and Grenada, Miss. This information comes from sources that are undoubtedly reliable.
I am, major, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. A. GORMAN,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE FRONTIER,
Rhea's Mills, Ark., December 26, 1862.
Major General SAMUEL R. CURTIS,
Commanding Department of the Missouri:
GENERAL: Your telegram of the 23rd, informing me of the movements of rebel troops from Little Rock, is received. I have the same advices from below, from spies and deserters. McCulloch's forces probably reached Van Buren yesterday. Whether they propose to act on the offensive or defensive, I am not advised. It was to guard against this combination of rebel forces, that in my telegram of the 12th instant I requested a force sent to menace Little Rock. I shall move upon Van Buren to-morrow morning with all of my best troops, leaving my transportation this side of the mountains.
I have been somewhat surprised at receiving telegrams from General Schofield, now en route from Saint Louis, giving directions relative to the movements of this army. I am in command of the Army of the Frontier, and until General Schofield arrives and assumes command by general orders, I shall direct its movements.
JAS. G. BLUNT,
Commanding Army of the Frontier.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI,
Saint Louis, December 26, 1862.
Colonel J. T. K. HAYWARD, Hannibal, Mo.:
COLONEL: Yours of the 23rd, to General Fisk, is before me. We have got to move very prudently here in Missouri, to avoid new issues and