EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT COLORADO TERRITORY, Denver, July 18, 1864.
Colonel J. M. CHIVINGTON,
Commanding District of Colorado:
SIR: I am informed authoritatively that the Ute Indians, or a band of them, are preparing to make an attack upon the settlements at Conejos, in the San Luis Valley. Agent Head requests that the camp there be strengthened to at least twenty men,which I hope you will be able to do.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Governor of Colorado Territory.
HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF WEST MISSISSIPPI, New Orleans, La., July 19, 1864.,
Major C. T. CHRISTENSEN,
SIR: I have the honor to call the attention of the major-general commanding to the following statement of facts in reference to affairs at Vicksburg and Natchez, Miss., a part of which I witnessed, and all of which, nearly, I find in the report of Colonel D. B. Sackett, Inspector-General, U. S. Army.
First. After the return of Major General W. T. Sherman's expedition to Meridian, Miss.,it was found that a great many horses and mules were scattered through the army that were properly the property of the United States, but were used and claimed by officers and soldiers, many having bought them from the negroes for a few dollars, the negroes having stolen them from the plantations. To prevent this fraud General McPherson issued an order that no horse or mule should be sold south of Cairo, as it was found that the system then in operation was causing the property of loyal citizens and officers to be stolen. The lack of forage in the department caused him to order all condemned horses and mules to be carried up the river.
Second. On the 15th of March, 1864, General Thomas, by order of the Secretary of War, ordered that a number of condemned animals in transit from Natchez to Saint Louis be unloaded at Vicksburg and turned over to the depot quartermaster, and on the 16th of March, by Special Orders, No. 37, by order of the Secretary of War, he ordered the depot quartermaster at Vicksburg to sell at auction all condemned horses and mules, together with all farming implements in his possession which could be disposed of without detriment to the service. General McPherson on the 16th ordered that all the animals to be sold should be first properly inspected and branded, and that no animal temporarily disabled, which could be recruited with proper care, should be sold, at the same time directing that five days' notice should be given before the sale. In spite of this order, General Thomas, through Captain Carncross, assistant adjutant-general, on the 18th of March ordered that the sale should take place on the morning of the 19th, stating that "any further delay would defeat the object in view." On the protest of the depot quartermaster, who stated that the animals had not yet been condemned and branded, the sale was postponed until Monday 21, and on Saturday and Sunday the inspector-general of the Seventeenth Army Corps inspected and condemned 1,038 horses and 492 mules. Colonel Sackett states that it would be utterly impossible
17 R R-VOL XLI, PT II