Since the outbreak of the rebellion to the present time over seventy steam-boats owned in Saint Louis have been destroyed by fire alone. Of this number only nine have been fired by rebels in arms, and there can be little doubt but the greater portion of the balance were fired by the above or similar emissaries of the rebel government.
By direction of Major-General Dodge:
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. H. BAKER,
Colonel and Provost-Marshal-General, Dept. of the Missouri.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI,
Saint Louis, April 26, 1865.
Respectfully forwarded to the Assistant Secretary of War, Washington, D. C.
I consider it important that these parties be brought to justice, and would suggest that good detectives be sent to Richmond and Mobile to arrest the parties named as in the rebel service and obtain further evidence. There is no doubt of the guilt of the parties. They were in the habit of burning boats, store-houses, &c., taking to Richmond papers with full account of burning, there filing affidavits, and on that receiving their pay. They then came into our lines and squandered the money, which brought them to our to our notice, and on making arrests the entire modus operadi was divulged. We have a large amount of testimony in the case, but desire to obtain more proof before we go to trial, and, if possible, get all the parties.
G. M. DODGE,
WAR DEPARTMENT, BUREAU OF MILITARY JUSTICE,
May 16, 1865.
Respectfully returned to the Secretary of War.
It appears from the within report of Colonel J. H. Baker, provost-marshal-general, Department of the Missouri, that two members of the conspiracy engaged in destroying Government boats and property on the Mississippi River, principally in 1863, have confessed that they were employed by the rebel authorities and that they were paid at Richmond by the rebel Secretary of State, and that in one instance one of them was personally engaged and contracted with by Davis himself to destroy valuable property in the use of our Government. The confession of Frazor to this effect is fully detailed by Colonel Baker, and would appear to be most conclusive.
Colonel Baker presents a lists of names of the parties connected with this conspiracy (by which, as he estimates, some sixty boats were consumed and in some cases lives of soldiers, &c., were destroyed), and urges that the commanding officers of the various departments be ordered to ascertain which, if any, of the individuals named are within their jurisdiction and to arrest such as are found and send them to Saint Louis for trial. Major-General Dodge further advises, in his indorsement, that detectives be sent to Richmond and Mobile to arrest parties supposed to be cormorant there, and to obtain further evidence. These recommendations are concurred in.
The subject is regarded as one of great importance, especially as illustrating the fact that Davis and other leaders of the rebellion have been the principals in this and other similar detestable and treasonable