The foregoing proclamation, owing to the irregularity of communication with the seat of Government, was not received until too late for the general observance of the day appointed. The commanding general therefore directs that the 16th day of December next be set apart for the objects specified; that on that day all Government workshops be closed and labor suspended, and that, as far as practicable, all military duties cease. The troops are recommended to assemble at their respective places of worship, and the citizens of the department invited to unite in the religious observance of the day.
By command of General E. Kirby Smith:
S. S. ANDERSON,
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS,
Lewisville, November 24, 1864.
Brigadier General W. R. BOGGS,
Chief of Staff:
GENERAL: I have the honor to forward the following extracts from a letter received to-day from Colonel Brooks, commanding Arkansas troops north of the Arkansas River, dated Camp on Fourche La Fave, November 13, 1864:
At daylight on the morning of the 4th of November, while skirmishing in front of Lewisville, Colonel Brooks' scouts brought in the information of the approach of General Curtis, with a force estimated at 3,000 men. Scouting parties reported soon to have seen Curtis' column, and the salute for a major-general soon announced his arrival. For the information of Major-General Magruder, I will state that Curtis' force, composed of two divisions, commanded by Major-General Blunt and Colonel Benteen, after a short rest at Fayetteville, moved on after General Price. I inclose an order issued by Curtis at Cross Hollows. A force of cavalry, supposed to be 3,000 strong, passed up from Little Rock to Fort Smith on the 8th instant.
The above is from Colonel Brooks; and I also inclose copies of letters from Captain Marston and General Maxey relative to re-enforcing the garrison at Fort Smith, they evidently supposing that the cavalry came from Fayetteville and not from Little Rock. In this opinion I do not agree with them. Colonel White writes on the 14th from the river that nearly all the troops at the mouth of White River have gone to Devall's Bluff, en route to Little Rock. Doctor Barry writes to the same effect on the 16th from Lake Jefferson, near the mouth of White River. General Canby was wounded on his way to Little Rock, and it is presumed is now at Vicksburg or Memphis under treatment. There is a report that he is dead. The enemy have thus been largely re-enforced at all points of their line, and may still make an advance, the roads being yet in good condition and the weather clear. Curtis' command and the cavalry re-enforcements sent to Fort Smith are now added to the forces before stationed on their right flank, and Canby's re-enforcements, consisting of the troops originally at the mouth of White River and those lately brought up the Mississippi River, are now at Little Rock and Devall's Bluff, thereby increasing greatly their force in the center. The only point that I have not heard of being re-enforced is Pine Bluff. To resist an advance of the enemy I have now at Camden one brigade of infantry of Parsons' division, and a few cavalry at Princeton and on the roads leading to Camden. Steele's brigade of cavalry is now to be employed toward the river in protecting cotton and driving off "jayhawkers" and "graybacks." One brigade of Parsons' division infantry is at Washington, and Churchill's division of