There is no point in the district that, in my judgment, would be safe with a less number of troops than now stationed at it, except at Camp Weld, near this city. There is now stationed at this place Companies A, G, and I, First Colorado Cavalry; one section of First Colorado Battery, or Captain McLain's company Colorado Volunteers (true relation hardly known), and half of Company G, Third Colorado Volunteers. I have kept more troops here than was demanded for immediate protection, first, because it is central, and I could from time to time, as necessity seemed to require, re-enforce the places that were threatened; second, because I have had to do a great deal of escort duty from this place, by direction of the War Department and Department of the Missouri, and under the circumstances I think this has all been necessary.
The Overland Stage Company has applied to me for additional protection between where their line enters the mountains and Fort Bridger, a distance of between 300 and 400 miles. On this route Fort Halleck is located, where Company B, Ninth Kansas Cavalry, has been stationed, but it is now relieved and ordered to Leavenworth, Kans.
I have directed Lieutenant-Colonel Collins, at your suggestion, to divide his command between the Overland Stage Line and the line of the Pacific Telegraph Company, which would afford them each ample protection, but no more than ample, in my opinion.
I have had to send another company to Fort Lyon, in consequence of the threatening attitude of the Kiowa and Comanche Indians, below that post on the Arkansas River, the Santa Fe route.
The civil officers of Conejos and Costilla Counties have all resigned, and there is only the United States commissioner and deputy United States marshal to carry on the affairs of Government there.
The commissioner has urged me to proclaim martial law in those counties, but, deeming this not best, I have assured him that he should have all needful protection and aid in the enforcement of the laws of the United States, and have instructed Lieutenant Colonel S. F. Tappan, commanding at Fort Garland, accordingly.
The Indians who committed the theft and robbery in the neighborhoods of Laramie and Halleck are now in camp at the Conejos agency, 50 miles from Fort Garland. I have thought it best not to irritate them, as they are the same who were represented at Washington last winter, and Governor Evans and Dr. Steck (Superintendents, respectively, of Indian Affairs in Colorado and New Mexico), and Indian Agents Whiteley and Head are to have a council and make a treaty with them on the 1st of October next; but if they refuse to indemnity the stage company and Mr. Richard, then, of course, we shall try to make them; otherwise they will steal and rob the country over, and so interfere with the stage company's stock that they could not run, and the mails would cease.
Whoever represented that a regiment could be spared from this district could not have known whereof he represented, or did not care about the safety of Colorado; perhaps wanted the job of transporting the troops to Utah.
Colorado, in my judgment, is not of second importance to any State or Territory to the General Government. If protected and kept quiet, she will yield twenty millions of gold this year, and double yearly for years to come, and, in view of the national debt, I think this important, very!
I hope the major-general commanding will not think that I have any sinister design in keeping troops here that ought to be elsewhere. If a special inspector (an officer on the commanding general's staff) could be sent out here (one who would agree to endure the fatigue of travel