HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI, Saint Louis, February 1, 1863.
His Excellency Gov. HAMILTON R. GAMBLE:
I am in receipt of yours of the 24th instant, conveying the preamble and resolutions of the honorable senate of the State of Missouri, stating that it has been represented that a conflict of opinion has arisen among the military forces at Chillicothe, Mo., growing out of the action of the provost-marshal at that place, threatening collision and bloodshed, and requesting me to investigate the causes of dissatisfaction, and if, necessary, to send a sufficient force there to enforce the [laws of the?] State of Missouri, has been duly received.
At the breaking out of the rebellion, Chillicothe was the headquarters of General Slack, a leader of the rebel forces, who field precipitately at the approach of my command on the 14th June, 1861, and finally fell at the battle of Pea Ridge, in Arkansas, an unfortunate victim of my pursuing forces. Some sympathizers remained near his old home, but they are generally sensible of the hopelessness of their cause in Missouri, and the loyal inhabitants are watchful and carefully enrolled to preserve the peace and suppress further outbreak. I had not heard of any recent difficulty or apprehension at that place, and have the honor to submit a statement, signed by about 250 of Enrolled Militia of the township, assuring me no such danger of conflict is known to them, and I am told these are all, or nearly all, of the Enrolled Militia of the place. The provost-marshal is one of the Enrolled Militia, and there is no other force in the vicinity. They are all equally interested in a watchful supervision of the neighborhood,and I am glad to find, generally,a hearty co-operation to sustain regulations designed and calculated to preserve the peace of the State.
As a further compliance with the wishes of the honorable senate of the State of Missouri, I shall instruct the commander of the district to make further examination, and specially notice the affairs of that vicinity,and if such danger can be ascertained, it will, if possible, be suppressed and the laws faithfully executed.
I have the honor to be, Your Excellency's obedient servant,
SAML. R. CURTIS,
SPRINGFIELD, MO., February 2, 1863.
I have everything ready for movement. If you still adhere to the Forsyth line, I might cross the river there,and move down the White River Valley to some point below Yellville - Mount Olive, perhaps- where I could easily draw supplies from Rolla, if necessary to wait for boats. The weather and roads are good. I only await your orders.
J. M. SCHOFIELD,
[DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI,] February 2, 1863.
General SCHOFIELD, Springfield:
I decide in favor of the route by Forsyth. Your must have ample arrangements for crossing before main force moves over. It might be well to have a small field-work or block-house to support they ferry crossing,