embarrassed for want of troops. I have not only insufficient to support Colonel Phillips in his efforts to hold the Indian country and Western Arkansas, but have not half the number of troops required to defend the border from guerrilla raids and to do escort duty. After furnishing escort for a supply train and paymaster, just for Colonel Phillips' command, I have not a mounted man at Fort Scott or within 25 miles of that post. The post is garrisoned by only about 200 infantry at Fort Leavenworth and one-half of a squadron of cavalry. All the other troops, about 500 mounted men, are in Jackson, Cass, or Bates County, Missouri, where rebel guerrillas are every day becoming more numerous. They have all crossed the river from the north side, and are concentrating in the frontier counties, between Kansas City and Fort Scott. Many are returning from the south, and their numbers are swelling daily. They are also making raids into the southwestern portion of Kansas, and a general state of alarm exists among the settlers, and as a last resort, for the protection of the loyal people of this State, which has furnished 30 per cent, more men than any other State to enter the service, I have been compelled to authorize the sheriffs of the border counties to raise a posse from among the few that remain at home for the protection of their laws and property. I shall furnish them such arms as I have and direct them to co-operate with the regular forces. This is the only way that loyal people can be protected until I can have troops furnished me.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAS. G. BLUNT,
OFFICE KANSAS CITY AND SANTA FE MAIL COMPANY,
Kansas City, Mo., May 14, 1863
Major General JAMES G. BLUNT:
SIR: The late raid upon the Santa Fe road, of which you are doubtless advised and by which this company h ave lost some valuable stock and travelers' money and other valuables, furnished evidence that without suitable protection from the military authorities, by way of sufficient guards at different points between this city and Council Grove, Kans., the United States mails, which we have contracted to carry according to schedule received from Post-Office Department at Washington are liable to be much delayed, if not entirely lost, as well as life and property of citizens and travelers upon the route endangered, and the mail contractors made liable to loss of such stock as may be placed upon the road for the transportation of said mails. We were assured at the Department for the transportation of said mails. We were assured at the Department that the military commander of this district would furnish requisite protection when needed. We have, therefore, taken the liberty of addressing you, to request that, if this portion of the mail route be within your jurisdiction it may be rendered safe from the incursions of these bands of armed men known to exist for the avowed purpose of plunder, which incursions are both easy and profitable to them from the necessarily exposed condition of the stock of this company at different stations. To this end we petition you as military commander of this district to dispose such a force as is in your judgment necessary at points upon the line.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
M. COTTRELL & CO.,
Proprietors Kansas City and Santa Fe Mail and Stage Company,
Per D. W. WELLS.