know how it was settled. General Ellet gave the boat a clearance, or something of that nature.
I was ordered with my command aboard the Autocrat and John Raines, on the 24th, but objected to taking my men aboard on account of small-pox, quite prevalent on the boats. The steamer Welcome was then detained for us until my transportation was aboard the marine boats, when we dropped down to Bruinsburg.
Messrs. Hamilton and Hutchinson rather objected to paying the men anything; said it was Clemens' business. Clemens said he would pay what General Ellet should order. I told the general that the men had been informed by me that they would get extra pay, and were expecting $1,000 or $1,200. General Ellet ordered his assistant adjutant-general to pay me $708, which I receipted for and turned over to the regiment treasurer the same day. I informed General Ellet, Mr. Clemens, and the rest of the cotton speculators present that my men should not soil and wear out their clothes at that rate. If they did extra work they should be paid for it, and we were not called on to handle any more private cotton. It was all called C. S. A. and abandoned.
I received the following order arriving at Bruinsburg the same day:
HEADQUARTERS MISSISSIPPI MARINE BRIGADE,
Flag-ship Autocrat, Bruinsburg, Miss., February 24, 1864.
COLONEL; You will detail one company and four of your poorest teams for the purpose of hauling forage to-morrow.
You will proceed with the remaining teams and six companies to the Valentine place and Confederate cotton, according to verbal instructions. Your men will be supplied with two days' rations, and will move off by sunrise to-morrow morning.
By order of Brigadier General A. W. Ellet:
P. F. HOWELL,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
February 25, went out to the Valentine place, 14 miles; found about 65 bales of C. S. A. cotton had been rolled out of a shed down into a deep gulch. The marines had got out 21 bales, I believe, before we got there; 16 bales remained whole, which I had taken out; the balance, the bagging had been taken off. It was all done by order of Mrs. Valentine. She said to save her buildings and corn as the cotton was ordered to be burned. Went to another shed; found about 131 bales all marked C. S. A on the inside of one end of each bale that I examined and M. S. on the outside. Saw General Ellet, and he ordered me to send in the train when loaded, his cavalry to guard it. I was to leave 12 men at the cotton pile as guards, and march back to Mrs. Valentine's house, 3 miles, and camp.
A small squad of men visited the cotton, in the night but were frightened away. I also, by General Ellet's order, brought in 34 bales of Mrs. Valentine's cotton, which he told me to take in lieu of the Confederate cotton she had unbaled. Afterward I was ordered to bring in all the Valentine cotton remaining in that shed and another one. Told the general I had told them by his order that we had taken 34 bales in place of that scattered on the ground, and would take no more; they could have the loose cotton. He said he had made different arrangements. He would take it all. The loose cotton was to be rebated on the halves, upon certain other conditions as to time. Took 33 bales out of one shed; could not well get the other. When returning, Mrs. Valentine inquired if we had got