WAR DEPARTMENT, ADJUTANT-GENERAL'S OFFICE.
December 17, 1864.
Commanding, San Francisco, Cal.:
Leave granted Captains Jordan and Wood. Major Van Voast has been ordered East to command his regiment; leave therefore not granted in his case.
E. D. TOWNSEND,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE PACIFIC.
San Francisco., December 17, 1864.
ADJUTANT-GENERAL OF THE ARMY,
Washington City, D. C.:
SIR: In forwarding the application of Brigadier-General Connor of October 14 for a leave of absence for sixty days, I am constrained to notice the remark of the general "that the present quiet which reigns throughout his district is due to his policy. " A reference to the correspondence between him and the headquarters of this department, a copy of which was transmitted with my letter of August 17, to the Adjutant-General of the Army will show, I think, that the general is mistaken, and that had he been allowed to pursue "his policy" this department would have been involved in war with the Mormons. General Connor bears the reputation of being an excellent soldier, and his ready acquiescence in the instructions I had to give him, checking the policy he desired to follow, shows his reputation is merited; but I think it only right and prudent that it be well understood to what the quiet his district now enjoys is due, lest by an approval of his policy trouble may come.
This application was detained to wait the return of General Connor from his trip to Colorado, where he had gone with the object of inaugurating a winter campaign against the Indians in General Curtis' department, which he was about to set on foot under some instructions he had received direct from Major-General Halleck. I do not think these instructions required General Connor to leave his district and to go and take command of forces so far away from this department, and that they do not contemplate the carrying on systematically of operations against Indians east of the Rocky Mountains by troops from this coast; that the protectioin to the overland route beyond the limits of this command was to be temporary and was not, as General Halleck says, intended to transfer troops or change commands. The general has now reorted his return, and states that in consequence of the severity of the storms and lack of forage for the animals of the command he had halted the two companies he expected to take with him at Fort Bridger; that he "found but few available troops in the vicinity of Denver to co-operate with his small command, even could the latter reach the scene of the difficulties, nor could be discover a very zealous disposition, even had the ability existed, to co-operate with his forces; that it was apparent to him that to attempt to transport his command across the mountains at this season of the year would result not only in much hardship to the men, but in rendering two-thirds of the horses entirely unfit for service after reaching the Platte plains. " As therefore