and, I think, reliable traders locate the hostile tribes nearly as follows: The remnant of Minnesota hostile Indians have 500 lodges on Turtle Mountain and about 200 lodges near Devil's Lake. The surrounding tribes are not very friendly to these Minnesota Indians, and they are, therefore, surrounded with danger. Poor and perishing, some of them straggle down to the settlements to steal and commit murder on their old reservation in this State. Near these hostile Minnesota Indians and on the south side of the Mouse River are the hostile Yanktonnais and tribes, said to be about 2,500 lodges. These lodges are also scattered in various bands, extending over a wide country 200 or 300 miles in diameter. They are also divided in council. It is my desire that you force may strike these hostile bands, so as to destroy or drive them still farther from our settlements. As they are in a very remote and cold locality, you will not have much time to operate there before winter, and not being prepared to remain, you will have to fall back to Fort Rice or Abercrombie, with a view of safety from the rigors of the season. Most likely we will next year establish a post at Devil's Lake, and I would desire to do so this year, but it is probably too late in the season to do so. If you reach Devil's Lake I desire that you will examine the country and locations with a view to such an establishment, and give me your best judgment as to its best position. Only small bands of hostile Indians have come down on this State, but they create great trepidation, and I am obliged to present all possible resistance and remedy to prevent a great stampede on the part of the frontier settlements. I hope you will leave ample force to guard the frontier settlements of Iowa [and] Dakota, and take most of the remaining forces to Fort Rice, and try to have large preparations made there for their comfort during the winter. If possible large corps of turnips and potatoes should be raised as a protection against scurvy a for food. I wrote you on this subject, and also directed that ample provisions of hay should be secured for wintering stock. I expect that Forts Rice, Wadsworth, and Abercrombie will be one great stronghold in the face of all great Indian nations the extend around the northwest from Lake Superior to the Black Hills. You will please acknowledge the receipt of this through this point, and send a copy of your letter through by mail to my headquarters at Milwaukee. In the same communication give me information as to your approximate force, your time of starting, and your probable arrival at Fort Rice and Devil's Lake, if you should get that far.
I have the honor to be, general, your obedient servant,
S. R. CURTIS,
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF, No. 150.
New Orleans, La., June 6, 1865.
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3. Captain F. J. Crawford, commissary of subsistence of volunteers, is hereby relieved from duty as post commissary at Port Hudson, and will turn over to Captain J. E. Howard, commissary of subsistence of volunteers, his successor, all public property, stores, and funds in his hands.
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By order of Major General E. R. S. Canby:
C. H. DYER,
Captain and Assistant Adjutant-General.