and are making for the river. We are hauling them in and putting them under every day. This country is in a terrible condition. Families, both Union and secesh, are fleeing for safety to our lines. Union, however, are scarce in these parts. One of the devils that I took had the scalp of one of our soldiers in his pocket.
This brigade, well equipped and filled, will hold the Indian counties, and I am of the firm opinion that the Indians can be used in no other locality to so good an advantage; in fact, I believe that to divert them to any other field of operations than the Indian counties will tend to demoralize them to dissolution. Lieutenant-Colonel Wattles' resignation is returned as informal. Although serious changes are preferred against him, he is yet in command. I think that a plenty of forage can be had to sustain this brigade during the winter between here and Neosho and in the vicinity of Cowskin Prairie.
I should still like to raise a battalion of sharpshooters and have the Henry rifle. I can make it equal to two regiments, and a terror to the enemy, yet I am here and cannot figure for the thing. The weather is cold and freezing very hard; real winter has come at last. Please use the petition inclosed as best you may, and gumit together, as I have not these little conveniences. I send it simply to show you the feeling, amongst the Indian officers, not that I imagine it will have a feather's weight with the Secretary of War. "There must be a friend in court."
Well, excuse me for my tedious letter, and the next will be short and to the point.
I have the honor to be, your friend,
A. C. ELLITHORPE.
Houston, Mo., January 16, 1863.
Colonel N. P. CHIPMAN,
Chief of Staff, Saint Louis, Mo.:
COLONEL: I have communicated, by telegraph, with the general commanding, but am not yet quite prepared to give an official report of my operations for the last week. Lieutenant Brown, Third Iowa Cavalry, captured on a reconnaissance and paroled, came in last night. He was released on the North Fork of White River, near Indian Creek, 45 miles below Hartville. He reports the enemy over 6,000, without including losses. They marched several miles toward Houston, but, for some reason, headed their column south, and moved on toward Arkansas. They are to rendezvous at Batesville, where they are to be joined by Hindman, and make another raid to Springfield. They buried an officer near Barnett's farm, on Clark, 10 miles below Hartville, whom he has no doubt was Porter. He saw him after he was brought from the field. He was then insensible, and said to be mortally wounded. Brown was captured early in the morning, about 7 miles west of Hartville, at the beginning of the first fight, and was with them all the time during the engagement. Marmaduke had several conversations with him, and expressed great admiration of the manner the men fought, repeating that they "were perfect devils."
My whole command are now with me and in fine condition. I shall send my official report to-morrow.
Meantime, I am, colonel, very truly, your obedient servant,
FITZ HENRY WARREN,
4 R-VOL XXII, PT II