COLUMBUS, KY., June 20, 1863.
I sent last night a steamer to Hickman, to convey the detachment of the Twenty-fourth Missouri Volunteers, and Company D, Thirteenth Wisconsin Volunteers, being the entire garrison, about 190 men, to New Madrid, in accordance with orders from the General-in-Chief.
Your communication of the 15th, to the commanding officer at Island 10,* has been sent me, with his reply. There is but an aggregate of 86 men on the island, to defend it and guard a contraband colony of 1,000 souls, which will render it difficult to reduce the small garrison. The gunboat New Era is at Island Numbers 10, which can, and will, be sent to New Madrid in case of an attack, and I will always be ready to give, as I have done heretofore, all possible assistance from my district, provided I am not menaced or attacked.
SAINT LOUIS, MO., June 20, 1863.
Brigadier-General ASBOTH, Columbus, Ky.:
Thanks for your co-operation. I have sent a small detachment to New Madrid, and will send another in a few days. This, with the gunboat, will, I believe, make all secure. Colonel Harding, who goes in command, is instructed to help you in case of need.
J. M. SCHOFIELD,
HEADQUARTERS INDIAN BRIGADE,
Fort Blunt, C. N., June 20, 1863.
SIR: I have had no mail, dispatch, or communication for two weeks. I have sent messengers to the colored regiment, but cannot hear of it. I have heard nothing of my train. Having repulsed the enemy on this side of the river, south of me, I sent this morning a heavy force, with howitzers, under Major Foreman, to clear out the west side of Grand River and go up to meet and cover the approaching train, nearly due. I have sent messengers, and also employed spies, to go to Fayetteville and open communications with the United States forces you informed me were there, but neither messengers nor spies have returned. Colonel Cooper's headquarters--probably Steele's also--are over the river, about 3 or 4 miles distant. The smoke of their camp fires is visible. They had a large train from Texas yesterday. The river is very deep fording--scarcely fordable.
WM. A. PHILLIPS,
Washington, June 22, 1863.
General JOHN M. SCHOFIELD:
MY DEAR SIR: Your dispatch, asking, in substance, whether, in case Missouri shall adopt gradual emancipation, the General Government will protect slave-owners in that species of property during the short
*See Schofield to Pennock, p. 319.