perform such duties is advancing upon a dangerous experiment, as well as inflicting a most intolerable outrage upon its most loyal subjects and devoted supporters.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Brigadier-General, Missouri State Militia.
P. S.- Since writing the above, a copy of the Lexington Union has been sent to me by some friend, and as it contains some articles that seem to have a bearing on the subject of the foregoing letter, I inclose it herewith.*
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI, Saint Louis, January 28, 1863.
Brigadier General WILLIS A. GORMAN,
Commanding District Eastern Arkansas:
GENERAL: I am in receipt of three letters of yours from Devall's Bluff, and also your telegram of the 22nd from Helena, via Memphis, saying you are busy sending force down the river. Everything seems to depend on the results at Vicksburg, so we must work, pray, and wait. I approve of your return to Helena, as it was consistent with my order from headquarters and my orders to you. Any further progress would have taken you so far away as to delay some of the troops in the down-river move, which now cannot be said of us. I hope you will retain ample force to hold Helena and the neighborhood. An order from the President authorizes General Grant to take temporary command of a portion of Eastern Arkansas, and I have written to Grant+ to know what he will include in such command. You will of course, obey his orders if he assumes command extended over Helena or any other part of my department in Arkansas, as he has orders to this effect,and I have desired he should have all needful power to secure the earliest possible success.
I am, general, very truly yours,
SAML. R. CURTIS,
SPRINGFIELD, MO., January 28, 1863.
I can build another boat at Forsyth in a few days, if deemed advisable. We should also have two or more at Yellville or some point below, if that route be chosen. It was my original intention to construct them, but the storms and bad roads, as reported by General Herron, rendered it, as I believed, too dangerous a packet at this season, yet we may still make that route practicable and safe, though I doubt whether there would be much gain of time unless we can rely upon supplies by the river when we reach Little Rock. It seems to me better to go north of White River to Battesville if we are to go directly to Little Rock, without reference to supplies after getting there. The best road is via Fayetteville and Clarksville. There will be no great difficulty in crossing the mountains from Fayetteville if Generals Davidson and Warren will move down where I can open communication with them when I reach Little Rock, and thus get supplies. If the river source fail there will
*No inclosure found.