HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF THE INDIAN TERRITORY,
Doaksville, December 5, 1863.
Brigadier General R. M. GANO:
GENERAL: Your letter of the 3rd instant was received last night. In reference to the stragglers through the country, I wish all of them arrested, and, when you have a party sufficient to guarantee it, send a guard with them to the nearest command of General Holmes' troops, at least such as claim to belong to Shelby's, or any other command serving in that army. Make a detail of one man, as you propose, to go to get clothing for each company. Dr. Hart arrived yesterday from Fort Smith. He reports the enemy's force at between 5,000 and 6,000. They have sent back the train which arrived on the 13th ultimo; consequently I infer that they do not contemplated an immediate advance with the whole force. They may, however, make raids, as they have a large cavalry force. Dr. Hart has been in charge of our hospital at Fort Smith. The re-enforcements brought by General McNeil he states at 1,000 or 1,200, and the force that moved out to attack us on James' Fork at 4,000. The force at Waldron he does not know exactly. The First Arkansas Infantry he knows is there. A negro regiment had been sent out, as well as a portion of the Second Kansas, but whether these last remain he does not know.
HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT,
Shreveport, La., December 6, 1863.
Lieutenant General T. H. HOLMES:
GENERAL: Several communications of recent date from General Steele have been received, stating that the enemy, with about three regiments of cavalry and a battery, have advanced below Waldron, and were on what was known as the Line road, between Texas and Arkansas. General Blunt has also recently received a small re-enforcement. General Steele is of the opinion that they meditate a cavalry aid. Under the circumstances, General Smith directs me to call your attention to their movements, that you may take such steps to co-operate with General Steele as will defeat the designs of the enemy.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
C. S. WEST,
Captain and Assistant Adjutant-General.
HDQRS. SECOND Brigadier, FIRST DIV., ARMY OF TEXAS,
Camp Garland, near Lanesport, December 6, 1863.
Commanding Department of Arkansas, &c.:
DEAR SIR: I send you, per courier, a communication from General Steele on the subject of re-enforcements.
My scout went several days since to within 8 miles of Waldron, and learned that the enemy's force there was about 1,500; 800 blacks and 700 whites. I learned last night that they were re-enforcing there with the troops from Gibson, Van Bureau, and Fort Smith, with a very heavy wagon train (nearly 300 wagons). This looks like preparations for a
69 R-VOL XXII, PT II