My intentions have been in the above distribution of troops, as far as it has been done since I have had command, to afford protection as much as possible to the settlements in the district, and at the same time keep up scouting parties where hostile Indians were most likely to be found. As the enemy is contiually moving, it is impossible to determine where he can in the future be met with. This valley is, however, the old home of the leading hostile Indians, and it is evident that in this vicinity they have their headquarters more than at any other given point. As they have been pretty closely pressed in this section of late, they resorted to their old schemes ofmakign a raid at a distance for revenge and plunder and to draw troops away from here. That the colonel commanding may become thoroughly acquainted with the position of affairs, I respectfully and earnestly urge that he visit this post at as early a day as pracitcable, and that at least one company of the Sixth be ordered here at once. The detachment at at Orleans Bar is barely sufficient for a guard to the town, but should be replaced by a company at least fifty men strong. Were the detachments of Captain Gibbs' company recalled from Camp Gilmore and the Gold Bluffs, and a company of about the same strength stationed at Camp Gilmore, from which small details could be made for each of the Gold Bluff settlements, the Indians would be pretty thoroughly checkmated from Arcata north.
The Indians will dislike very much to return to the interior without committing depredations somewhere on the coast, and they may pay a visit to the Eal River settelements. For the information of the colonel commanding, I inclose a rough outline map of the district. *
In readiness to assist the district commander by every means in my power, I remain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
S. G. WHIPPLE,
Lieutenant Colonel First Battalion Mountaineers, California Vols., Commanding at Fort Gaston.
HEADQUARTERS DISTRIrtk Vancouver, Wash. Ter., February 20, 1864.
Hdqrs. Department of the Pacific, San Francisco, Cal.:
COLONEL: I have to request authority from the general commanding to place (throughout the coming season until late in October) troops in the field as follows: From Fort Boise qest and westerly, two companies of Oregon cavalry (A and E), under command of Captain George B. Currey. From Fort Dalles, southeasterly, two companies of the same regiment (D and G), under the command of Captain J. M. Drake, of that regiment. The murders and depredations of the Snake Indians have rendered these expeditions necessary to protect the large mining population in their intentions to explore, prospect, and mine in that whole region, extending from the Grande Ronde and The Dalles to thue California line. The miners have found silver as well as gold in the region of the Owyhee, southwest of Fort Boise. There will be a large rush of people in that direction under the belief that it is a second Nevada. The Snake Indians were very trouble some in that quarter last autumn. There is reason to fear that many of the most inveterate have left the vicinity of Fort Hall, and moved westerly to that great region so little known between Snake River and the Cascade Mountains. Last fall just before winter set in, about the middlek of November, the Snakes ran off