HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ARKANSAS, Little Rock, Ark., April 1, 1865-11. 15 a. m.
Commanding, Mouth of White River:
Please inform Major-General Pope that the dispatch of 27th ultimo form Saint Louis is received this morning indicating repair of line between Fort Smith and Saint Louis; also that Major-General Reynolds left Pine bluff for you post at 5 o'clock this morning. Brooks is reported to have crossed the Arkansas River between Illinois Bayou and Piney with a force of 500 or more men. There are three steamers up the river, two of them at Forts Smith and Gibson, the other supposed to be above Dardanelle, and is safe, no doubt.
HDQRS. SECOND DIVISION, SEVENTH ARMY CORPS, AND U. S. FORCES AT DEVALL'S BLUFF, ARK., April 1, 1865.
Lieutenant J. K. WHITSON,
Ninth Kansas Cavalry:
SIR: The brigadier-general commanding directs that you assume charge of the outposts on Lower Surrounded Hill, taking up your quarters with the picket reserve until further orders. You will lose no time in thoroughly reconnoitering and making yourself familiar with every foot of land guarded and the means and route of approach, making as complete a map of the hill as your facilities enable, for the information of these headquarters. The commanding general desires you also to make such disposition of the troops sent to report to you as in your judgment seems best to properly guard and protect the hill against the incursions of bushwhackers and horse thieves, constructing with as little delay as possible suitable shelters, block-houses, &c., for the guard as seems to you necessary. For this purpose tools can be obtained of the residents of the neighborhood. The utmost vigilance on the part of all the detail will be required, and under no circumstances must discipline be relaxed. Slight offenses will be corrected and merit rewarded on the spot. You are referred to existing orders concerning the duty on outpost and scouting, and improve every opportunity to impress upon the men the necessity of their observance. You are authorized to pass through the lines and forward to the provost-marshal's office such persons as seek permission and can satisfy you of their loyalty, giving to each individual a written permit, which must be delivered to the provost-marshal here. If at any time you obtain reliable information of the presence of guerrillas, jayhawkers, &c., in your vicinity, and a delay of sufficient time to inform these headquarters would make a search for them useless, you are authorized to detach a portion of the guard to scout the country within a few miles of your lines, always taking every precaution against surprise. The discretion herein authorized must be exercised only in cases that promise almost certain success, and it is preferred that you should accompany and command all such scouts in person, leaving always one officer fully instructed with the guard behind. An occasional visit among the people on the upper hill will enable you to judge with tolerable accuracy to what extent they can be relied upon for information. A close watch will also be keep by you upon the persons employed as well as the principals engaged in growing