Regiment, is in about the same condition as Washita. No drill, no discipline, and of poor military appearance. They have never been drilled in battalion drill but once. Colonel Bass, if one judges from the fruits of his labors, is an officer of no competency. Captain [W. H.] Wooten, post quartermaster and acting assistant commissary of subsistence, is attentive to duty, and, though not perfectly conversant with the papers of his office, is, I think, an efficient officer. His expenditures are extravagant.
Brigadier General Smith P. Bankhead's brigade, composed of Gurley's Texas regiment cavalry, Hardeman's Texas regiment cavalry, and Krumbhaar's battery, is in poor condition as a brigade. The discipline of the two regiments is quite poor. Their drill is far below what it should be. Gurley's regiment, commanded by the senior captain, presented a very poor appearance. I called on the three senior captains to drill the regiment in battalion drill, and each of them in turn admitted his incompetency to do so; finally the senior captain made the attempt, and failed most signally. Colonel Hardeman's regiment was better than Gurley's, but very deficient in all things. The drill was poor, discipline poor, arms badly kept, and military appearance not good. Krumbhaar's, battery was in very good order; discipline good; drill very good; military appearance fair. The caissons and carriages were not kept clean, but the ammunition was well packed and the boxes free from anything foreign to their proper contents. The clothing of these men I found to be much better than any I had seen. Captain [E. A.] Burke, brigade quartermaster, displays energy and efficiency; his papers were in good condition and returns up to date. He had quite a supply of clothing (at least one suit per man) on hand not issued. His disbursements were not as extravagant as other quartermasters.
Brigadier General D. H. Cooper's brigade, of First and Second Creek Regiments, Seminole Battalion, Chickasaw Battalion, Pickens' company Chickasaws, Cherokee regiment, De Morse's Texas regiment, and Wells' battalion Texas cavalry was poorly drilled, armed, and disciplined. The desertions from De Morse's regiment have been very numerous. The Texas regiments are well mounted and better armed than the Indians. Many of the latter have flint-lock rifles, and nearly all of them have the common sporting rifle. The majority of the Indians are poorly mounted on Indian ponies. They are almost entirely ignorant of drill, and I believe that, acting with white troops, subject to the same rules, and compelled to fight by the same tactics, they are of but little use, while as auxiliaries they might be effective against the enemy by allowing them to fight according to their own ideas of war. It is almost impossible to obtain a correct report of their strength, owing to their irregular habits and ignorance of forms. Scarcely any discipline is maintained among them.
The Government is feeding so-called "indigent Indians" in immense numbers. In this, great fraud has been practiced; for instance, I am told by the commissary of General Steele (Captain [A. H.] Cline) that Colonel Tandy Walker, commanding First Choctaw Regiment, who, of course, draws his pay as any other colonel, drew rations for his family and some 10 or 15 negroes belonging to him as "indigent Indians." Drawing $210 month as a colonel and owning 10 negroes, he and his family cannot be "indigent," nor are his negroes "Indians." Major L. D. [S. J.] Lee, chief commissary of subsistence, is attentive to duty and understands his business perfectly. His returns are all up to date. Major A. S. Cabell, chief quartermaster, seems to be attentive to duty and to understand his business; but, b inspection, I find that he has a