many depredations, and who have as yet eluded our utmost vigilance. I have kept all my available men almost constantly in the saddle. Many I send out daily in disguise, both on horseback and in wagons, to represent farmers and movers, but as yet to no purpose. The stage has been stopped several times, and once the horses and mail carried off. I immediately sent detachments out in all directions, leaving the post almost deserted. I now furnish an escort to the mail going both ways, but my men and horses are fast giving out under the daily amount of work they have to perform. If the mail could be detained at this post over night, of the stages meet at Piney and Gasconade, it would obviate the necessity of sending two escorts with the stage in one direction. If this arrangement could be made, I hope you will take into consideration the importance of this place as a military post, the vast amount of labor to be performed by such a small force, and, if you have any troops at your disposal, I hope that you will send me a few at least to hold this place while I keep my men scouring the country for miles in all directions, hunting those thieves and meting summary justice to them.
Hoping this will meet with your favorable consideration, I have the honor to subscribe myself, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Major, Commanding Post.
UNITED STATES STEAMER CONESTOGA,
Off White River, May 3, 1863.
Major General B. M. PRENTISS,
Commanding United States Forces, Helena, Ark.:
SIR: I have understood that you are threatened with an attack at Helena. If it proves to be in force, and you consider it necessary, let me know, and I will re-enforce you with gunboats.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
THOS. O. SELFRIDGE,
HDQRS. OF THE ARMY, ADJT. General 'S OFFICE,
Washington, May 4, 1863.
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II. Brigadier General James Totten, U. S. Volunteers, will immediately return to his command in the Army of the Frontier.
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By command of Major-General Halleck:
E. D. TOWNSEND,
Washington, May 4, 1863-2 p.m.
Major-General CURTIS, Saint Louis, Mo.:
General Rosecrans asks for more troops. Your department is the only one which can possibly give him any at this time. Can any be spared for him?
H. W. HALLECK,