derstood that General Blunt is interested in the prospective profits, if not in the investment. This is doubtless so.
I have been so crowded with delayed business since my return, that I have not been able to write you as to final disposition of the troops of my district for the winter; besides, I wished to see Colonel Weer before writing you, and he has just got in. I, however, recommend that the Sixth Kansas, which is in a bad condition at Fort Smith, as Colonel Du Bois has doubtless reported to you, be ordered to me, and the Fifteenth, which is now ready for the field, be ordered to relieve it at Fort Smith. The latter regiment should be kept together for drill and discipline. It has the best, but most outbreaking, material of the State. I cannot keep it together here. I ask to have the Sixth sent here, at the earnest solicitation of its field officers.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
THOMAS EWING, JR.,
P. S.-I thank you for the extension of my district. It is a public mark of approval, which gratifies and strengthens me.
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF SOUTHWESTERN MISSOURI,
Springfield, Mo., November 3, 1863.
Commanding Department of the Missouri, Saint Louis:
General McNeil arrived at Fort Smith on the 31st instant [ultimo]. The cavalry he had has returned to Cassville. I have not learned where the infantry and artillery are. The line between here is down. Brooks, with his force, is reported at Yellville, re-enforced by about 800 men, making about 1,600 in all, and contemplating an advance into this State by Marshfield, &c. I am sending out scouts in that direction, and will get his movements soon. Has the detachment of the Eleventh Missouri Cavalry, at Kansas City, left for this place; if so, when did it leave? I have appointed Lieutenant-Colonel Bishop chief of cavalry,and he will report by letter.
[JOHN B. SANBORN,]
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI,
Saint Louis, November 3, 1863.
Brigadier General THOMAS EWING, Jr.,
Commanding District of the Border, Kansas City, Mo.:
GENERAL: Now that the border counties of Missouri are free from guerrillas, and are likely to remain so during the winter at least, it appears to me that the loyal people of those counties might be permitted with safety to return to their homes. If they return now they will be able to gather their corn and some other crops, and make themselves comfortable for the winter. If this policy be adopted, I think the test of loyalty should be rather liberal than severe, the object being to permit those, and only those, to return who will hereafter be faithful to the Government. Under the reign of terror which has so long existed on the border, active loyalty could not be expected. All who return should be enrolled, and their names registered at the nearest military