War of the Rebellion: Serial 033 Page 0517 Chapter XXXIV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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SPRINGFIELD, MO., September 8, 1863.

Major-General SCHOFIELD:

I just hear from Captain Gilstrap, in command of the troops at Cassville, that Captain Gardner, of the Second Kansas Cavalry, with orders to Colonel Cloud to fall back on Fayetteville and send Catherwood and the militia to this post, was captured near Mud town, having 1 man killed and 23 taken prisoners. They were all paroled, and are at Cassville. I sent Colonel Harrison, with a battalion of his regiment and a section of the First Arkansas Battery, yesterday to Fayetteville. I hope to set things right there. These things are all the fruit of Colonel Cloud's desertion from this district, in violation of orders. Will you send orders to the First Arkansas Infantry and the battalions of the Sixth and Eighth Cavalry, under Catherwood, to march to this post with all possible haste? The Second Kansas, with Cloud, anybody may have. I shall only have continuous trouble with them. If you want them put through, send them back, and the job shall be attended to. Lots of guerrillas in the northern part of district, and in the south of Central District, where General Brown seems to have no troops. The Sedalia mail has been lately attacked, and 4 men of the Eighteenth Iowa, on recruiting service, were taken on Friday last, 2 of whom were killed. I hope a more efficient officer than Colonel Phelps will be sent to Warren, with positive instructions to attend to things in that direction. He seldom hunted guerrillas while in this district, and I don't believe he will do better where he is.

JOHN MCNEIL,

Brigadier-General.

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF SOUTHWESTERN MISSOURI,

Springfield, Mo., September 8, 1863.

Colonel CLOUD, Commanding Arkansas Expedition:

COLONEL: I just learn that Captain Gardner, of your regiment, with orders for you to march back to Fayetteville, was captured at Mud Town, and, with 23 men, is now a paroled prisoner.

Since you passed down, a train has been attacked on the same road, and several men killed and wounded. Thus you see that by exceeding your first orders and absolutely violating your last, you have left a district where there was plenty of business to go to one where you had no business at all.

You will get duplicate copies of your orders, the originals of which I suppose were captured with Captain Gardner. Upon receipt of this, you will move back to Fayetteville, where you will turn over the command to Colonel Harrison, and report in person at this post.

The battalions of the Sixth and Eighth Missouri State Militia Cavalry will be moved as rapidly as possible to this post.

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

[JOHN MCNEIL,]

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF SOUTHWESTERN MISSOURI,

Springfield, Mo., September 8, 1863.

Colonel M. LA RUE HARRISON,

Commanding First Arkansas Cavalry, in the Field:

COLONEL: I last night sent your orders to change your course to Cassville. You will reach there by rapid marches, and, when there, you