War of the Rebellion: Serial 086 Page 0740 LOUISIANA AND THE TRANS-MISSISSIPPI. Chapter LIII.

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PINE BLUFF, ARK., December 1, 1864.

Major-General STEELE:

Four boats started down the river at 9 a.m. to-day. I thought it best to send Colonel Erskine,with twenty-five cavalry, on board, with orders to disembark at Arkansas Post and come up on the north side.

POWELL CLAYTON,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

ROLLA, MO., December 1, 1864-9.50 a.m.

Major-General ROSECRANS,

Commanding Department of the Missouri:

Shall I assume command? I am the ranking officer in the district.

Very respectfully,

E. C. CATHERWOOD,

Colonel Thirteenth Missouri Cavalry Volunteers.

SAINT LOUIS, December 1, 1864. (Sent 10.20 a.m. 2nd.)

Colonel JOHN E. PHELPS,

Springfield, Mo.:

I think if you can get to Batesville you will not have much trouble with your stock from there. The canebrake alone will subsist the horses on easy marches,and I judge that Izard County has a great deal of forage in it. You can move on two or three lines to or near Batesville. We had much rather you would go that way and clean up the country, but if the march cannot be made without much loss in stock the route should be changed. When will you be ready to leave? I expect to have all your officers relieved him time to go with you.

JOHN B. SANBORN,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

SAINT JOSEPH, MO., December 1, 1864.

Brigadier-General FISK:

Reliable information on yesterday states a band of guerrillas to have been doing some damage near Richfield. If Colonel Harding could be stationed at the U. S.arsenal in Clay County he would be only fifteen miles below Kansas City,and on the river five miles from Liberty. Liberty arsenal is only eight miles from Richfield. You know the guerrillas for the last two years have done all their crossing at Richfield and at different points ten miles below. Colonel Harding says his men are so insubordinate that he desires them away from towns, if possible. Colonel Harding thinks if his men were thus stationed he could be of great service against guerrillas.

Yours, &c.,

J. M. BASSETT,

Colonel and Acting Provost-Marshal.

[Indorsement.]

I think the foregoing advisable, and it would be of great assistance to me not take the men out of the district until the question of their exchange is definitely settled.

HARDING,

Colonel Forty-third.