and as the treaty reads that requisitions for criminals shall be made, when the civil authority is suspended, "through the chief military officer in command of such State or Territory " that I am the only one empowered to make such requisitions.
The only doubt existing in my mind regarding it arises from the fact that my immediate commander, Major-General Banks, commanding the Department of the Gulf, at New Orleans, may decide that he alone can make requisitions under the treaty as commander of the department and that I cannot make them.
Considering our great distance from New Orleans, and greater from Washington, I am more than anxious that no collision of authority here should cause inconvenience to the public service during the time which would elapse for the proper reference of a case, and my inclinations, as well as my duty, urge me to avoid any by using all means within my power, and by waiving all questions which can be waived without a culpable neglect of my official obligations; but I hope you will secure from the War Department, or from our military superiors, such instructions and orders as may settle matters which may arise in question, and as may avoid the danger of confusing the ideas of the powers in Mexico, with whom we are in communication and thereby causing them to refuse action which they might otherwise be willing to take.
In the case of the man Hamilton whether you or I are decided to be right, or are sustained in the opposite opinions we entertain on this matter, he is in our hands. I have received him into custody, in accordance with your request, and in the same spirit will try him according to law, and punish him according to his findings and sentence.
In conclusion, I will say that in this case, as in my others that may arise, my feelings of satisfaction will amount to almost delight to bring to a merited punishment any and all persons who may be convicted of having been engaged among the band of cut-throats and assassins who have persecuted to death, and driven from their homes and from the domains their country has given them, the loyal men of Texas.
I have the honor to remain, with great respect, your obedient servant,
N. J. T. DANA,
HEADQUARTERS UNITED STATES, FORCES,
Fort Esperanza, Tex., December 15, 1863.
Brigadier General CHARLES P. STONE,
Chief of Staff:
GENERAL: The First Indiana Battery, belonging to the First Division, Thirteenth Corps, is a fine battery and I am anxious to have it sent here if possible. I learn that two sections of it were sent up to Donaldsonville. The remaining section, I suppose is at Algiers. I shall also be very glad to have the First Wisconsin Battery, consisting of four 30-pounder Parrotts, sent out, or, if a battery of 20-pounder Parrotts can be had, they would be preferable on the score of easier transportation. In reducing the works of Quintana and Velasco, some heavy guns will very likely be required. The First Wisconsin is a good battery, and has seen a good deal of service; has good guns and good horses.
The last information I have in regard to the force of the enemy is that he has about 3,000 men on the Caney River. I should mention, if I have not already done, so, that we cannot go up Matagorda Bay