HEADQUARTERS CAVALRY DIVISION,
Fort Scott, October 27, 1864-daylight.
Commanding Department of Kansas, at Shanghai:
GENERAL: General McNeil's brigade moved yesterday after your command. General Sanborn is now upon the Lamar road, and will push until he strikes the enemy's trail and will follow it up as fast as he can. He has been directed to report often. My two other brigades are moving to join you, but from the exhausted condition of the animals this must be slow. My artillery particularly cannot go farther as it is, and not being able to obtain fresh horses, I have taken the best horses for four pieces and leave the rest behind. Escaped prisoners state Price blew up his ammunition train yesterday, and has but one gun left. In reference to the prisoners captured in the late engagements, the misunderstanding doubtless originated from some of your staff officers not comprehending your orders. The Missouri troops felt hurt in not being allowed any participation in guarding the prisoners, and this feeling was increased by a Colonel Ritchie, who in the most violent manner began to seize hold of officers of my staff and declare they were arrested by your orders. In this manner he arrested your provost-marshal, and as no remonstrance of mine had any effect on his conduct, I directed General Sanborn to keep him quiet until I could report to you. I repaired to your quarters, but found you had left, and I then requested Major McKenny, your aide-de-camp, to report the facts to you, which he promised to do. A number of persons have since informed me that Colonel Ritchie's mind is so weak that he is not fit to be intrusted with any business of importance. I trust this explanation will be satisfactory. Your arrangement for Captain Hall, provost-marshal, to take charge of the prisoners and escort them to Leavenworth, shall be strictly carried out, and i will see that he is furnished a sufficient guard, of both Kansas and Missouri troops, if he desires it. I have heard of no imputations or reflections upon the Kansas troops, and my desire is that the Missouri troops should serve with them in perfect harmony. I was informed last night that General Rosecrans left Little Santa Fe yesterday morning to overtake us. I have not been able to hear of him since. From the effects of a severe fall and exhaustion from my late arduous service, I am unable to move this morning, and I forward the certificate of my medical director to that effect, with the request that as soon as I can do so I may be permitted to return to Saint Louis, where I can obtain proper care and attention. I shall direct the different brigades of my command to report to your directly, and wishing you, general, every success, I remain,
Very truly, yours,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE BORDER,
Camp at Coon Creek, October 27, 1864-5.30 p. m.
DEAR GENERAL: Yours of this morning is duly received and am glad to hear you have pushed forward your troops. Price destroyed a large amount of transportation, and strewed the way with his material of every kind, which he could not burn. Straggling rebels are being taken, and