On Thursday I inspected the new posts at Shanyuska and Jackson, and seeing everything working well returned here to-day. Inclosed you will find a rough sketch* of the line south of Fort Ridgely, which I think is now sufficiently strong to repel even a larger raiding force. On this line I am desirous to keep our own troops and have an understanding with Colonel Smith that the militia should form a second line of defense, with patrols inside of our lines. The inclosed communication from Captain Slaughter shows that there is some little trouble in the upper country. I shall send a few men to re-enforce his lines somewhat, and the moment I hear from Lieutenant McGrade I shall be able to know what force I can spare to send up. All this moment it seems to me that there is no danger of any considerable number of Indians crossing the Minnesota yet, though they may change their field of operations if they find that we are prepared for them below. The only party of Indians that has actually been seen was on Wednesday evening at about 10 o'clock, when eight or ten made their appearance in front of the Coal Mine Station, on Big Cottonwood, and were followed by half a dozen men, who lost sight of them in the darkness and could not track them in the morning. On the same day one Indian was seen near the old patrol road on the Little Cottonwood by an old settler, a reliable man, who says he was within forty paces of him, but seemed to be unarmed and ran away from him, hiding in the tall grass.
In conclusion, I wish to assure the commanding general that nothing shall be left undone that can prevent the perpetration of depredations, and if they should occur again, in spite of my best efforts, I hope to be able to report the complete destruction of the perpetrators.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
HDQRS. COMPANY E, SECOND CAV. MINNESOTA VOLS.,
Manannah, August 17, 1864.
Lieutenant Colonel WILLIAM PFAENDER,
Commanding Second Sub-District of Minn., Fort Ridgely Minn.:
COLONEL: A messenger came into Paynesville on the 13th with a report that hostile Indians had been depredating in the neighborhood of Norway Lake. Sergeant Jones immediately started for that point with three men of his detachment and the messenger. During the afternoon of the same day I also received information that the Indians had been shooting cattle in the vicinity of Norway Lake. I immediately started with four men from my detachment and Scout Myrick, provided with three days' rations, and camped within twelve miles of the lake that night. Started at daylight next morning, and had proceeded but a short distance when he came upon the camp of families fleeing from the lake. We were here shown an ox and cow that had been wounded, and after careful examination were satisfied that it has been done with rifle-ball. A few hours after I fell in with Sergeant Jones and party. They had found the cow (missed by the settler the same day; the other cattle came home wounded) dead, and a portion carried off, and had also found the trail of three Indians on the beach of a small lake, and also the camp-fire and a portion of the meat left lying on the ground, together with a portion of the hide; everything indicating the presence of Indians. The cattle had been grazing about two miles from the set-