of the occupying army, but extended to various men and bands who used their cloak of loyalty as a disguise to gratify the spirit of plunder and personal aggrandizement. So general had this become, and of such and aggravated character, that there existed a necessity for a stringent and summary disposition of the offenders whenever and wherever they were caught. An opportunity for such measures soon followed in the cases I have above cited, and examples were promptly made which have been attended with the most gratifying effect, restoring peace and quiet and safety to all alike, and bringing men back to a proper observance and reverence for the laws. The examples thus made have saved to a section of Missouri, already devastated by a civil war attended with barbarities and atrocities unparalleled, further scenes of robbery, rapine, and arson, and effusion of blood, which fully atones for the irregularity and justifies the summary method by which they were effected.
Maddox's company at Knobnoster was an independent company, formed without authority, ostensibly for the protection of the citizens of Knobnoster and vicinity, but as the evidence which was elicited at the trial of Maddox, Chester, and others shows that the men, while under the immediate command of Maddox, who assumed to be their leader, at other times roamed through the country robbing the houses of unoffending and peaceable citizens, taking the wearing apparel of women and children, burning dwellings, stealing horses, and murdering men. Maddox's company was known as Company Q, and as such were the terror of the county of Johnson. Some 20 of this Company Q and those that consorted and acted in concert with them have been arrested. Some have been tried before aa military commission, and the record in their cases awaits the action of higher authority, while others are yet to be tried. Those whose cases have been investigated have had a fair and impartial trial, with every opportunity to make a legitimate defense before a legally constituted military commission. Others have been released upon preliminary investigation without a formal trial.
I am, very truly, your obedient servant,
E. B. BROWN,
Brigadier-General of Volunteers.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI,
Saint Louis, Mo., February 10, 1864.
The major-general commanding desires you to present his thanks, in a complimentary order, to Captain Turner and the men under his command for their gallant and good conduct in the attack upon the rebels in Searcy County, Ark.
O. D. GREENE,
FORT SMITH, February 10, 1864.
Honorable E. M. STANTON:
What I wrote from Leavenworth concerning Fort Gibson and this place I find fully realized. My department should include western counties of Arkansas, to properly garrison and support Fort Smith,