force again to Fayetteville; so, if your are threatened, or if you should need my support, it would be necessary for you to enter the Nation. If you get equipped and armed, and could march your force to join mine, we could demolish any force at Van Buren or Fort Smith. My line of supplies will now be by Grand [Neosho] River, and I could not leave the forces below here at Webber's or Fort Smith to get below. In fact, it would be ruinous to attempt to move the Indian force into Arkansas until they are drawn sufficiently far from the Arkansas River that they would not cross it.
I write this fully so that you will understand our mutual necessities. I thought, when I formerly wanted the aid of your command to take Fort Smith, that driving the enemy from that point when it was weak would relieve you, and permit me to perform a useful and inevitable duty in the Indian country. For the past, however, I have no repinings, and merely refer to it so that you will understand me.
If you get fully equipped, as you desired, I think our joint force sufficient to drive the enemy from Fort Smith, Ozark, and even Clarksville. In the mean time I shall try and break up the forces trying to be organized in front of me. The Arkansas River is up past fording. It will be impossible for me to move all of my force from the Nation, as I shall have to leave some to protect the people.
Keep me advised as to your condition. Send scouts (spies) on to the Arkansas River to learn if there is any attempt to mass a force, and inform me of what you learn.
How are your fortifications? Mine are progressing rapidly here.
As I have already written, if you are threatened, move westward and join me, informing parties in your rear of the movements.
Have you had communication with Colonel Weer?
Please send me some late papers if you have them.
WM. A. PHILLIPS,
CASSVILLE, MO., April 18, 1863.
Colonel WILLIAM F. CLOUD, Commanding:
I would state that, on the morning of the 15th instant, I sent a lady as a spy down in the section of country near Berryville, and she has just returned, making the following report:
She says she stopped on the night of the 16th 5 miles west of Berryville, and that, on the morning of the 17th instant, 100 men of Marmaduke's command passed the house where she had stopped-the same men whom Captain Humphrey fought. They said that they were going to Newton County, Missouri, but were to report back to their commander within twenty-one days, and that Colonel Congreve Jackson was 6 miles south of Berryville with 600 men, and that Marmaduke was at Pocahontas with a considerable force, which was confidentially told the lady of the house by the captain in command of the party; also that General Price was between Little Rock and Batesville, en route for Missouri, but was marching slowly, and foraging for his Missouri troops that were in behind. They asked a great many questions with regard to our strength, situation, &c., and then said they might not attack this place for several days. An officer told the lady of the house that we would not be here five days for all the re-enforcements that could get here with in that could get here within that time.
Major, Commanding Post.
15 R R-VOL XXII, PT II