possible. It will have marched about 500 miles in about ten days, over very bad roads.
The Indian troops and Kansas troops have, against my orders, gone home, and the officer who took the responsibility is arrested. I never knew such an outrage on discipline as the act of Colonel Weer, dispersing most of a division of Kansas troops to go from the neighborhood of Springfield to their homes. I am getting them back as fast as possible. The Indians are doing all they can to hold their own country, but they are too far down southwest by neglect or disobedience of orders, which I am trying to remedy as fast as possible. I have but few volunteer troops in this region. The Missouri State Militia cannot be sent out of the State. The Enrolled Missouri Militia will not stay in the field during this season of corn-planting. They will not turn out quick enough to resist a raid, as was shown by the recent attack from Arkansas. If I had not retained some of the volunteers I had started to Rosecrans, the rebels would have rushed in and taken Pilot Knob and Cape Girardeau, if not this city. I am obliged to keep my force distributed to prevent the rebels from assembling recruits, and also to procure forage for horses.
As soon as General Vandever gets back to Pilot Knob with the portion of the Army of the Frontier, I will try to scrape up re-enforcements to send forward. The Governor is trying to change Enrolled Missouri Militia into provisional regiments, some of which are now collecting together, and giving some hope of success. But at present I have demands for troops coming from every neighborhood, and cannot send a man away till I get news of the returning troops, and what the militia will do. I send also with this letter a specimen of demands and reports of department commanders relating to the police force needed in different districts of Missouri.
The Union people cannot stay on their farms if we withdraw this police force. Besides this, a reserve must be held ready to resist such raids as Marmaduke has twice attempted. He has gained comparatively nothing so far, but Price is now on the Arkansas trying to raise new forces, and he will soon try to renew the effort to attack Missouri. A move from Helena against him should be made at the earliest possible moment, but I suppose your demands for Vicksburg prevent General Grant's notice of Price at this time; yet you cannot fail to perceive that Price's reported presence in Arkansas, and the movement of Marmaduke, ostensibly under his orders, tend to stimulate new movements throughout Missouri, which can only be restrained by considerable force and constant vigilance.
With greatest desire to do all I can in all directions, I remain, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
SAML. R. CURTIS,
[Inclosure Numbers 1.]
LOUISIANA, MO., April 1, 1863.
Major General SAMUEL R. CURTIS,
Commanding Western Department:
DEAR SIR: Some few weeks since I had the honor to communicate to you the notice for a public meeting to be held in Bowling Green on the first Monday of March last and to make some suggestions in regard to it. Though my letter and suggestions were only such as any loyal man ought to have communicated, I was gratified to learn that my