War of the Rebellion: Serial 033 Page 0569 Chapter XXXIV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION.

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Milwaukee, Wis., September 22, 1863.

Honorable E. M. STANTON,

Secretary of War, Washington, D. C.:

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 16th instant, inclosing copies of papers from the Department of the Interior, in relation to a military force which it is desired be stationed at the new reservation of the Winnebago and Sioux Indians on the Upper Missouri. In relation to the force asked for, I will instruct General Sully, who will have troops to spare for the purpose as soon as he returns from his expedition. He was at last dates 250 miles above the reservation, and just gained a decided victory over the hostile Sioux, killing over 100, and taking many prisoners, and capturing and destroying the camps, supplies, &c., of the enemy. Until his return I shall not have any force for the purpose indicated by the letter of the Secretary of the Interior, nor is it believed that such a force will be needed whilst General Sully is interposed between this Indian reservation and the hostile Sioux, to protect reserve Indians against hostilities of other tribes. That such a force will be necessary, however, at this reservation for other reasons, is plain enough from the official report of General Sully, a coy of which is herewith transmitted.* If the War Department desires it, I will direct General Sully, when he returns from his campaign, to post the force at the reservation asked for by the Secretary of the Interior.

The ordnance and ordnance stores desired are not in the department, nor at my command. The difficulty of supplying the force asked to be posted at this agency is fully set forth in the letter of the Secretary of the Interior in relation to supplying the Indians at the same place, and this difficulty will be greatly increased if cavalry be stationed there. I will, however, endeavor to post the troops and supply them, as requested by the Interior Department, if the War Department desire it.

I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,


Major-General, Commanding.


Milwaukee, Wis., September 23, 1863.

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief, Washington:

GENERAL: I have the honor to transmit, inclosed, a letter from General Sibley, dated Saint Paul, September 16, in which the reports the application for peace, unconditionally, of nearly the whole of the Sioux bands north and east of the Missouri River. I have directed him to send Hatch's battalion forthwith to Pembina, and open the communications with these Indians which he suggests, and in the manner in which he proposes. Such understandings with them will probably be made as will preclude all apprehension from them hereafter, and in the spring such treaties as may be deemed judicious can be made by the proper officers of the Government. I would only suggest in this view, and I do so with all urgency, that no purchase of lands be hereafter made, and no money annuities, under my circumstances, be accorded. Such conditions only exhibit (in the eyes of the Indians) weakness on the part of the Government, and lead necessarily to the very hostilities they are intended to prevent. They stimulate the cupidity of unscrupulous men, both traders and others, and finally lead to that system of


*See Part I, p.555.