dition of the Arkansas and Missouri frontiers was almost an insurmountable obstacle to invasion, whilst the force left at the control of the district commander was nearly equal to the whole effective force in the rest of the Trans-Mississippi Department, and, if not adequate for defense, was all that could be placed at his disposal. The abandonment of the State of Arkansas has not been contemplated by the department commander, and he trusts its necessity may never arise. Should the enemy, massing a large column, push up the valley of the Red River, it will be necessary to concentrate all the available troops of the department and meet him there. Thus the valley of the Arkansas may be endangered or even temporarily occupied. I would urge the Executive to prepare for such an emergency either by calling out the military or organizing for its defense a State force without the conscript limit of age.
The machinery referred to by you was removed from Camden, because the exposed position of that point left it within easy reach of a force from the Mississippi. The means at my disposal will not admit of troops being maintained at every pint within the department. Machinery and material of vital importance to it must be removed to safe points in the interior. Disregard of this principle has already seriously impaired our resources.
In conclusion, I would assure the Governor of Arkansas that I have the interests of his State at heart; that I am not biased by local influences, but shall labor faithfully with the limited means at my disposal to preserve the integrity of this department.
I am, with much respect, Your Excellency's most obedient servant,
E. KIRBY SMITH,
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS,
In the Field, near Cotton Plant, July 11, 1863-6.30 a.m.
General STERLING PRICE,
GENERAL: Lieutenant-General Holmes directs me to say he will leave to-day for Augusta. Any communications for him to-day will be sent to Augusta; after to-day to Des Arc.
If successful in crossing Parsons' brigade at Des Arc, you will encamp it there in the most convenient and salubrious position, and await further orders from General Holmes. If you are not successful in accomplishing the ferriage to Surrounded Hill, you will march by the route followed by Generals Fagan and McRae.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JOHN W. HINSDALE,
CAMP SIX MILES ABOVE GAINESVILLE, ARK.,
July 11, 1863.
Brigadier General J. S. MARMADUKE:
GENERAL: I have fallen back from my position at Brown's Ferry, in consequence of the scarcity of forage and supplies. While there, the regiment foraged in Missouri, but the reoccupation of Bloomfield by a heavy force rendered it extremely hazardous to send parties over the river for supplies. The forces of the enemy formerly in occupation of