of most of Arkansas on the Federal line of march were compelled to seek the rear of our retreating armies, and our own people, en masse with Creeks and the population ofthe Northern Choctaw counties, were driven to take temporary refuge on Red River an in Texas, where they at present abide.
The destitute condition ofthe people had been represented to the authorities of the Confederate Government,and I am gratified to be able to state that measures had been taken to supply them with provisions, independent ofthe ordinance of convention to supply the destitute, passed May 30, 1863. The principal commissioner, Captain J. L. Martin, who was appointed under that ordinance, was also appointed issuing agent under an order from General Steele, making provision for supporting the destitute with rations at the expense of the General Government. I have received no official report from the commissioner, and am only able to say in this connection that rations have been furnished him for distribution among needy Cherokee families, which have at short intervals of time been received and issued under his direction. During the last winter th Cherokee delegate to the Confederate Congress, Mr. E. C. Boudinot, succeeded in obtaining an appropriation or loan of $100,000 fromthe Confederate Government to supply the most pressing necessities of indigent Cherokees. Forty- five thousand dollars of this amount has been received by the commissioner on part ofthe nation who is now engaged in making purchases of such articles as their immediate wants require. It is expected that they will soon be at hand and ready for distribution.l It is expected that they will soon be at hand and ready for distribution. It lies within your province to take such action in this matter as you wisdom may judge best, for th uniform and best allotment of these articles among the actually and literally destitute, to which state many of the people have been reduced. The act of the general convention, entitled an ordinance to increase the military fore in the Indian Territory, placed,with certain exceptions, all Cherokee male citizens between the ages of eighteen and forty in the service ofthe Confederate States for the them of two and three years. It is not necessary to inform you that it is of the most urgent consequence for affecting the re- establishment of our national rights that the war should be prosecuted with the greatest vigor, and that the whole of the population capable of bering arms should take part in the common struggle. I therefore. recommend, for the purpose of increasing our effective military force to the utmost, that an act e passed putting all Cherokee male citizens between the ages of eighteen and forty- five fit for duty,and not already enlisted for the war, in the Confederate service for that period, with such future provisions for fully carrying into effect such a law as in your judgment may seem best. The ordinance of the general mass convention establishing this government, held at Tahlequah, August 21, 1862, reaffirmed and adopted the constitution and laws previously in operation, and it lies within your province to make any amendments or additions to the same in the proper mode as you may deem expedient. I am, however, aware that the interruptions to which your present session is exposed, and the consequent necessity of dispatch, to which I respectfully urge upon your notice, will not allow you perhaps to excise the requisite deliberation, except upon the most material subjects of legislative action affecting the immediate welfare of your constituent.
A general council, to which all the Indian tribes are invited, has been called to meet on the 20th this month at Choteau's Trading House. Three delegates have been appointed to represent the Cherokee people,