HDQRS. DIST. OF MINNESOTA, DEPT. OF THE NORTHWEST,
Saint Paul, Minn., November 15, 1864.
Major General JOHN POPE,
Commanding Department of the Northwest, Milwaukee, Wis.:
GENERAL: I have the honor to inform you that in consequence of the murders committed by individual Chippewas during the past season, and the alarm thereby produced among the people resident in the counties in this State bordering upon the country occupied by that tribe on the east of the Mississippi, manifested by their frequent and urgent applications for military protection, I have deemed it advisable to order forty men of the Second Minnesota Cavalry to Chengwatona, in Pine County, under the command of a commissioned officer, and the rest of the company under the captain to Princeton, in Sherburne County, under the command of a commissioned officer, and the rest of the company under the captain to Princeton, in Sherburne County. The settlers on the east side of the Saint Croix River, in the Military District of Wisconsin, are very desirous that a force be posted at some point on Apple River, but as Chengwatona is near the line dividing the two districts, I do not consider it necessary that the station on Apple River be established, at least for the present.
I am, general, with high respect, your obedient servant,
H. H. SIBLEY,
NEW ORLEANS, LA., November 16, 1864.
Major General H. W. HALLECK,
Chief of Staff:
The copy of General Sherman's dispatch,* dated 3rd and transmitted from headquarters of the Army on the 5th, also copy of your dispatch to Generals Reynolds and Steele, have been received. The directions given in the latter in relation to Price have already been anticipated, and it is hoped that Steele will be able to carry them into effect, unless Price diverges so far west as to be beyond reach. The arrangements necessary on my part to meet General Sherman's views are now being made, so far as they can be done while Magruder is still threatening Steele's line or watching for an opportunity to cross the Mississippi. That the latter, in accordance with Jeff. Davis' orders, is still his design, appears evident from all reports received; but he is watched closely and cannot well succeed. It is desirable that I should know when Sherman's operations will commence, in order that my own arrangements may be timed accordingly. At the present low state of water in the Mississippi I do not think it would be safe to leave it to be guarded solely by gun-boats and local garrisons, as General Sherman suggests. The troops sent to Missouri during the recent emergency were ordered by me to return to Memphis in anticipation of Beauregard's movements threatening the posts on the eastern bank of the Mississippi. These troops have now been ordered to Nashville, and for the purpose of replacing them and forming a reserve force others should be sent to Memphis from the west. Re-enforcements should also be sent to the Department of Arkansas, many regiments having recently gone home to be mustered out of service. One of my objects in going to Arkansas was to satisfy myself as to the expediency of abandoning Fort Smith and its dependencies. I have
*See Vol. XXXIX, Part III, p. 613.