War of the Rebellion: Serial 033 Page 1075 Chapter XXXIV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - CONFEDERATE.

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HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT,

Shreveport, La., November 22, 1863.

His Excellency SAMUEL GARLAND,

Principal Chief [Choctaw Nation]:

SIR: I am instructed by the lieutenant-general commanding to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 7th instant, relative to the arming and equipping of the militia called out by you.

The commanding general thinks that the best and only way of avoiding complication and irregularity in the equipment of these troops is to form regiments regularly and muster them into the service for the war. He thinks you have misconstructed his letter written heretofore on this subject. The organizations for home defense and special service, composed of men over forty-five and under eighteen years of age, are to be called into the service by the commander of the Indian Department when in his estimation their services are required for the public safety.

There is a supply of ammunition at Bonham, Tex., which can be gotten by requisition on General Steele. An order has been given Colonel Thomas for all the arms at that point, and also funds have been furnished him for the purchase of more. If, when your organization is made out, you send up the names of the officers you wish appointed, their appointments subject to the President's approval, will be sent. When the militia are called into the Confederate service by the commander of the Indian Department, all dispositions necessary for their subsistence will be made by him.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. CUNNINGHAM,

Lieutenant and Aide-de-Camp.

HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT,

Shreveport, La., November 22, 1863.

Brigadier General WILLIAM STEELE,

Commanding District of Western Louisiana [Indian Territory]:

GENERAL: The lieutenant-general commanding directs me to say that Governor Garland, principal chief of the Choctaw Nation, has been notified that he would be supplied with ammunition from Bonham on requisition upon you. This ammunition is needed for his militia. The lieutenant-general commanding has recommended Governor Garland to organize his Indians, between eighteen and forty-five years of age, into regiments, and have them mustered into the Confederate service for the war. Those under and over these ages, respectively, he is recommended to organize for home defense and special service. These will be called out by you whenever their services may be necessary for the safety of your department. It will be necessary to provide for their subsistence.

The lieutenant-general commanding thinks that these Indians can best be managed by having them in the service. The commanding general thinks it would be well to put yourself in communication with Governor Garland, so that they may be a good understanding between you and him on this subject.

I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. CUNNINGHAM,

Lieutenant and Aide-de-Camp.