the only people in the department who misappreciate my motives and falsify my acts. I have always accused myself of an undue partiality for the District of Louisiana. I have incurred the ill-will of the district commanders of both Texas and Arkansas in my efforts to sustain you, to increase your command, and to insure the success of your military operations. I have, feeling the importance of your command, stripped the other districts of troops, and you have now under your orders more than one-half of the effective force of the department (exclusive of State troops). I should not notice this attack, but that it comes from a paper printed at your headquarters. I shall not let it influence my feelings or affect the cordial relations existing between us, but I consider it due to both of us that it should be brought to your attention.
I have written to the Department asking the promotion of Green, Bagby, Randal, Major, and Speight. I have spoken to the Texas delegation, and they promise to support the application. I inclose you a copy of the letter.*
E. KIRBY SMITH.
HEADQUARTERS FIRST DIVISION, ARMY OF TEXAS,
Santa Gertrudes, Tex., November 8, 1863.
Captain EDMUND P. TURNER,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Houston:
SIR: I find from orders just received that the general, in anticipation of what has occurred, required me to fall back to Roma. I have explained in a previous letter why I did not think it prudent to risk the train by the River road, and I now submit a few considerations, to which I ask the special attention of the general commanding. It is perfectly apparent that, if I had been left with but one company at Fort Brown, I would have been sacrificed.
The revolt of Vidal has given me an important lesson, and satisfies me that I can trust no one by my own people. To attempt to hold Roma with one company is too much risk, and will only invite attack. The men on both sides of the Rio Grande will soon be in the saddle, and, under the direction of the United States officers, will destroy this country.
I propose that no cotton shall pass the river below Eagle Pass, and think a determined effort should be made to hold that position and insure the safety of the cotton trains en route. After it crosses, it will be in the State of Nuevo Leon, whose government is friendly, and will do all that is possible to foster and protect the trade, while the contrary will be the case in Tamaulipas, and I have no doubt but that the transit of goods from Matamoras on the Mexican side of the river will be prohibited; it must then go to Monterey, and from thence, so long as Vidaurri is in power, we will receive its benefit. I have issued an order here to run all cotton to Eagle Pass, which, if approved of, you will have published in the Houston papers.
There are immense stocks of horses between the Rio Grande and Nueces, which will be taken by the enemy.
I shall remount the Thirty-third Regiment from this vicinity, and, if the public necessity will not permit an effort to defend this part of the country, then I should be authorized to remove all the horses to the