STATE OF MINNESOTA, EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT,
Saint Paul, August 13, 1864.
Brigadier General H. H. SIBLEY,
Commanding District of Minnesota, Saint Paul, Minn.:
GENERAL: I respectfully inclose copy of a communication from Colonel B. F. Smith, of Mankato, stating that the savages have attacked the settlements in the vicinity of Vernon, Blue Earth County, and that they have murdered several citizens. I am confident, general, that you will adopt the most vigilant measures for the slaughter of these miscreants and the protection of our frontier settlements. I shall immediately direct Colonel Smith to organize a company or two of mounted minute men to be used promptly on behalf of the State in all cases of emergency, and to act when called upon in concert with the forces under your command. He will be instructed to communicate freely with your officers upon the frontier posts, and to afford them the best possible assistance in case of necessity, and I request that you will instruct your said officers to recognize, consult, and act in concert with the said Colonel Smith, as the representative of the State government and the commandant of its military forces along the frontier of Minnesota south of the Minnesota River. Colonel Smith will be directed to form squads of mounted minute men in New Ulm, Vernon, Blue Earth City, and Winnebago City, in addition to a company at Mankato, and the names of the respective officers will be communicated to you. Any suggestions that you may have to make in relation to my duty in this matter will be thankfully received.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Governor of Minnesota.
MANKATO, August 12, 1864.
Governor S. MILLER,
Commander-in-Chief of Minnesota Militia:
GOVERNOR: About 12 o'clock last night a messenger arrived at my house with a line from Major E. P. Evans, of Garden City, stating that Mr. Root, of Vernon, was killed by Indians and his son shot through the shoulder. He called out what men he could and sent here for more. Major Evans has just come to this place (4 p.m.) and reports one man found murdered (Esquire Charles Mack, of Willow Creek) and some five others are missing. One woman and five children were found who had fled and secreted themselves in high grass. Others are still missing. Seven Indians have been seen, I believe, at one time. They have taken eighteen horses in this settlement, but they may have done much damage farther west. How many are murdered or taken prisoners cannot now be told, nor the number of Indians that may be in the raid. One Indian claimed, in a conversation with one of the citizens, that they were 500 strong and would overrun the whole country, but that is not to be relied on. It is, however, a very serious affair and calls for prompt action. We can only meet them in small force, and that without any proper organization, and must, therefore, do the best we can until relief can be had. I sent a messenger this morning to Fort Ridgely with all the reliable information I was in possession of. Our people do not appear to be excited, but all feel that quite a serious raid