Fifth. There are a number of vacancies for which recommendations were sent up to the War Department. Although two months have elapsed no response has come. We want instructions as to whether fresh nominations shall be sent up.
Sixth. When a vacancy occurs, I recommend that authority be given to assign some party to it to fulfill the duties. Should the party be appointed or commissioned, his muster to date from the beginning of his period of service.
Seventh. A mustering officer ought to be with the command. There [are] at least 200 private soldiers not mustered. They could not draw pay in January, many of them having six or eight months' pay on the December rolls, and their families suffering.
Eighth. I urge that the command be fairly supplied, as equally as other troops. They do at least as hard and faithful service. I have maintained them far in front for a long time, even when other troops fall back. They do not complain much, but it is wrong. I have sent appeal after appeal, but had to take what was sent. The Indian command has never been properly supplied with food and clothing. Their arduous duty has been severe on clothing, and much of that sent has been of poor quality.
Ninth. I suggest the necessity of examining some of the medical officers of this command. We have some excellent gentlemen; one or two who are not properly competent. All might be examined, or I would not hesitate, if so directed, to order those most poorly qualified to report for examination.
Tenth. I recommend that the Third, a twelve-company regiment, be mustered as mounted riflemen on Government stock. The soldiers ought to be either all cavalry or all infantry. When first in the service they were nearly all mounted on their own horses; the Third were all mounted, the Second three-fourths mounted, and the Creeks about one-half mounted. Partially mounted on poor stock is bad. Details ought to be made by companies or squads with their officers. Where there are only two white men you can depend on in a company, broken details of the men with horses are hard to manage. The Creeks have the healthiest ponies, and can march best. I thought at first that they would not be of any value as infantry. In the last expedition, where they did nearly 400 miles marching, they did remarkably well.
Eleventh. The announcement from you that the Indian would not be mustered out has done a great deal of good to the command.
Twelfth. I would recommend the change of the disbursing officer, assistant quartermaster, and assistant commissary at least once a year. I find that a great many promises have been made these Indians by General Hunter and General Lane and the Secretary of the Interior, and a great many other persons, which they look to be carried out, and which the orders I receive render it impossible to carry out. Some bad and designing men appeal to them not to go out of certain limits. I have made the best of them in carrying out my orders, but, if there is any fixed policy, I would respectfully request to know it.
Thirteenth. There are some 200 or 300 deserters from the three regiments scattered in the mountains as guerrillas-Union guerrillas, or loose "pins." I propose arresting them all, having them court-martialed, and set to work the fortifications, but I must have white troops to catch them. The desperate characters I shall