the Regular Army be ordered to report to me as mustering and disbursing officer.
An officer of the Ninth Kansas, while in my command, recently on a scout found some gold coin hidden near the premises of a rebel. The parties living there professed to know nothing of it. Captain Coleman and the lieutenant counted out the money-$540 in gold coin- to the provost- marshal(Lieutenant Moody), in whose charge it is. Hearing nothing of a legitimate owner, I design sending it forward, small though the sum is, to aid in paying the interest on the national debt. I do not permit it to be disbursed here for two reasons: there is a premium on it, and I prefer to have greenbacks circulated here. It is the first money taken in my command, and I shall forward it at the earliest safe opportunity to your headquarters.
By the last train the post quartermaster forwarded 42 bales of cotton. It was chiefly taken from rebels on the Arkansas River, and goes to the credit of the Government. Twelve bales are claimed by Mr. Powell. Colonel Harrison writes about his claim. The cotton was sent to the quartermaster of the post, Springfield. I desire that it be forwarded to your headquarters, Saint Louis, Mo. As to the right of the gentleman, Powell,to the 12 bales, I can say nothing, knowing of it but by hearsay and his own statements. The 30 are clearly contraband, and the 12 you can adjudicate when your get them to Saint Louis.
My horse stock suffers. Forage is almost entirely gone from this region. In the Arkansas Valley there is a little grass. I was in hopes of getting some boat- loads of corn, and taking them to subsist my stock there, but your orders to burn any makes it difficult for me to push my half starved stock down to Clarksville, merely to burn a boat.
General Blunt's instructions, while they do not order, seem to indicate that I should prepare to go forward. Your dispatches forbid it. I am waiting to cover my commissary train of 125 wagons. I intend having them unloaded at Fort Gibson. I cannot take one fourth of it. However, I shall manage somehow.
I am watching for Marmaduke. I have a reconnaissance at Huntsville, one on White River, one near Clarksville, one at Dutch Mills, and one at Dripping Springs.
I am, general, your obedient servant,
WM. A. PHILLIPS,
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE INDIAN TERRITORY,
Fort Smith, Ark., March 9, 1863.
Colonel M. LA. RUE HARRISON,
Commanding United States Forces, Fayetteville:
SIR: Your letter of 8th instant by flag of truce has been received. The subject- matter is one over which I have no control. Sergeant Major Thompson has never been under my jurisdiction. I have appointed Captain Crosby, adjutant- general, to confer with Lieutenant Stark.
Your obedient servant,