trade will be seized and confiscated, and the parties engaged in the traffic visited with the extremest rigor of the law. It is the desire of the Government that private cotton shall, as far as possible, be removed east of the pearl River. The existence of large deposits of cotton contiguous to the lines of the enemy is a constant temptation to them to organize raids which spread devastation and ruin throughout your district. Interest then, no less than patriotic feeling, indicates the wisdom and prudence of removing the source and cause of calamity from your midst. To all owners of cotton who desire to carry out, in this disposition of their property, the views of the Government, I am instructed to afford every aid and facility in the way of transportation and protection in my power. Should you decline to avail yourselves of these aids the cotton will, when in danger of falling into the hands of an advancing enemy, be invariably burned.
In the earnest hope, fellow-citizens, that we may be able, zealously and efficiently, to co-operate with each other in repelling and crippling the resources of the common enemy,
I am, respectfully, your fellow-citizen,
GEO. B. HODGE,
Brigadier-General Commanding District South of the Homochitto.
SHREVEPORT, August 26, 1864.
I left Saint Louis August 2; was detained by low water several days. Arrived at Mouth of White River day after Empress was fired into; detained there until two other boats arrived. Then we were convoyed by a monitor and two gun-boats fifty miles below Gaines' Landing. I then concluded to go to New Orleans and get off on wa up. Left New Orleans August 16 at 2 a. m.; was left in middle of Mississippi River, on two planks and a paddle, above Lake Providence. I joined secret society in Saint Louis. I do not think you can rely on much aid from Illinois, &c., in case you march into Missouri, yet the order in Missouri will aid you and fully post you up should you go to Missouri. Many of the militia companies are entirely under the control of said order, and I am fully satisfied there has never been or will be a better time to redeem Missouri than the present. The militia are armed, and I am fully satisfied thousands of them will join your army as soon as you come within any reasonable distance of them. There are several thousand that may join you from Illinois and Iowa, yet full dependence cannot be placed. It is not know how many members the order has in Missouri. I do not believe they exceeded when I left over 15,000 or 20,000, yet they all have their influence and control the militia as far as possible. I would say it seems to be the opinion of all parties that with a respectable force (from 15,000 to 20,000 men) you could take or redeem the State. I never knew public opinion to change as fast as it has for the past year in favor of peace. Editor of New Orleans Picayune said he saw a dispatch from Yankees at Mobile Bay to Naval Department, New Orleans, in which they state they attacked Fort Morgan, and that our guns reserved fire until land force got within 300 yards of fort, when we opened fire and killed 3,800 besides the wounded. I believe the above to be true. If not true, then little dependence can be placed in positive assertions. The boat I came on was so watched or guarded that I could fetch nothing from off the boat