Government will allow me to keep General Connor in the field with not to exceed 2,000 men of his present force, leaving the forces You have designated to garrison posts on the plains, I will settle these Indian difficulties before spring satisfactorily to the Government, and bring about a peace that will be lasting. I may do it in a month or two, or it may take longer. The additional expense to the Government will be the pay of that number of troops for the time detained. All the stores, forage, &c., to support them are here and en route. As soon as we settle with them we can send these troops in and take 2,000 more from our posts in addition and muster them out. General Connor left Powder River with sixty day's supplies, and I am satisfied if we will allow him time he will settle the matter before he returns. Should he come back by our orders without settling the matter, the entire Indian tribes will be down on our lines, and we will have our hands full, and more too. The forces for Utah I will soon have on the road, and when Connor gets back he can go right there.
G. M. DODGE,
GELENA, ILL., September 1, 1865.
His Excellency A. JOHNSON,
Seven weeks' absence from Washington and free intercourse with all parties and classes of people has convinced me that there is but one opinion as to the duty of the United States toward Mexico, or rather the usurpers in that country. All agree that, besides a yielding of the long-proclaimed Monroe doctrine, non-intervention in Mexican affairs will lead to an expensive and bloody war hereafter or a yielding of territory now possessed by us. To let the Empire of Maximilian be established on our frontier is permit an enemy to establish himself who will require a large standing army to watch. Military stations will be at points remote from supplies, and therefore expensive to keep. The trade of an empire will be lost to our commerce, and Americans, instead of being the most favored people of the world throughout the length and breadth of this continent, will be scoffed and laughed at by their adjoining neighbors both north and south-the people of the British Provinces and Mexico. Previous communications have given my views on our duty in the matter here spoken of, so that it is not necessary that I should treat the subject at any length now. Conversations with You have convinced me that You think about it as I do, otherwise I should never have taken the liberty of writing in this manner. I have had the opportunity of mingling intimately with all classes of community than the Executive can possibly have, and my object is to give You the benefit of what I have heard expressed. I would have no hesitation in recommending that notice be given the French that foreign troops must be withdrawn from the continent, and the people left free to govern themselves in their own way. I would openly sell on credit to the Government of Mexico all the ammunition and clothing they want, and aid them with officers to command troops. In fine, I would take such measures as would secure the supremacy of the republican government in Mexico. I hope You will excuse me for the free manner in which I address You. I but speak my honest convictions, and then with the full belief that a terrible strife in this country is to be averted by prompt action in this matter with Mexico.
U. S. GRANT,