War of the Rebellion: Serial 033 Page 1108 MO., ARK., KANS., IND. T., AND DEPT. N. W. Chapter XXXIV

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Colonel Wells) there is not a soldier within our limits except our own, while the enemy is stationed but a short distance from us, with a large and heavy force. Is there no remedy for our distressed condition? Will not our father, the President, aid and effectually assist his distressed and sinking children? We know he will. General Cooper has done all he can for the protection and defense of our country. We know he feels a deep interest in our welfare, and were the proper means placed in his hands, our country would be ably defended beyond a doubt; and as to a commander for this department, he is decidedly our choice and preference. Thus much we have thought proper to transmit to our father, the President, with entire confidence that our wants in the premises thus sent will meet his approbation, and be completely met and satisfied.

Affectionately, yours, &c.,

MOTY KANARD ET AL.

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF THE INDIAN TERRITORY,

Doaksville, December 21, 1863.

Colonel S. S. ANDERSON,

Assistant Adjutant-General:

COLONEL: I received yesterday the order relieving me from command in the Indian country, complimentary in terms, but the effect of which is utterly destroyed by the accompanying letter, putting me in a subordinate position in the same command from which I have asked to be relieved. The slanders that have been industriously circulated through the Indian country and Northern Texas not only make it extremely disagreeable for me to serve here, but it impairs my usefulness. I think it only justice to me that I should not be required to serve in this region until I am cleared of the imputations referred to, particularly as serving in a subordinate capacity where I have been in command carries the idea that I have not given satisfaction, and have been superseded in consequence. The order relieving me will be seen by few, the fact that I am superseded will be patent to every one. The belief expressed that General Cooper will be found to be the senior is an additional reason for wishing to quit the country. I cannot serve under him, as I may be required at any time to do. You have doubtless seen the article in the Houston Telegraph of the 5th instant, referring to matters here, and intimating that there has been complicity with the enemy. I have written to the editor for the name of the writer, with a view to a trial. This letter purports to come from the troops I am to be assigned to, and makes another reason why I should not take this command at present. I think I have lost enough already by accepting a command from a sense of duty, after it had been declined by several officers to whom it had been offered before me. Notwithstanding the fact that all the property I owned at the beginning of this war was at the North, and that I resigned from the army and cast my lot with the South, I am looked upon with suspicion as a Yankee, and am told that people will not believe that I am not a brother of the Federal general of the same name, that being one of the reports circulated. I had hoped to be able to quit this country and to have a short time to arrange the records of the district in such a manner that they would have formed my defense.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

WM. STEELE,

Brigadier-General.