insulting. He was also kind enough to compliment me on the manner and matter with which I sustained myself and those persons General Blunt saw fit to assail.
One thing only remains, in my opinion, to be done, and that seems to be demanded by every consideration; it is the placing of General Blunt where the belongs. Having sown the wind, let him reap the whirlwind. The time has passed for temporizing with the defiers of regulations, law, and common decency. A stern example should be sternly made. I shall remain here till this letter has time to reach you. If you desire any action, and wish my service, a telegram will notify me, and I will do my duty.
Having about finished my business for the State, I now proffer my services to you. If proper, I should like to have you place me upon your staff on the receipt of this, and I will remain with you at least till we see the end of this Blunt business.
If you think it wise to abstain from any action at present, I will assent; but my voice now is distinctly and emphatically for war to the knife.
Believe me, general, most respectfully and truly, yours,
Lexington, December 12, 1863.
General E. B. BROWN,
Commanding Central District of Missouri:
MY DEAR GENERAL: I have this moment received a letter from Colonel McFerran, at Warrensburg, inclosing yours of the 7th instant, in regard to arming the citizens of this district. I have been much interested on this subject, and when last in Saint Louis brought the matter to the notice of the Governor, who authorized me to place arms in the hands of all who would organize for the protection of their neighborhoods against the thieving bands which are disturbing the peace of the country. I have exerted myself to effect this object, but have thus far had no success.
The people, more particularly of the western portion of this and the other counties of the district, are afraid to do anything which will bring them into additional peril, and all that they seem to desire is to be permitted to live. Their spirit is broken, and they appear bereft of every manly feeling. Nor is this to be wondered at. They have been oppressed and plundered until they are utterly discouraged in doing anything. The truth is, that the larger part of the population really have no property to protect, and they very reasonably (I think) conclude that their heaving arms would subject them to additional danger, not only from bushwhackers and guerrillas, but from the troops from Kansas and the border counties, who make almost daily incursions into this and other counties, and against whom they could offer no effectual opposition. The outrages committed by these troops upon the people of this county, even since La Fayette has been disconnected from General Ewing's command, are absolutely horrible to relate; and so long as this plundering of the country is to be sanctioned by the officers in command, as has been he case, there can be no peace or quiet to the country, and separated as the people are, it is impossible for them to resist large and organized bodies of troops. Why this is permitted by General Schofield I cannot imagine, unless he has arrived at the conclusion, which seems to prevail extensively elsewhere, that there are no loyal which seems to prevail extensively elsewhere, that there are no loyal people in Missouri, and that their lives and property are not worth protecting.