condition of the blacks- daily incrasing in numbers and daily diminishing in thei9r resources- must be alleviated both for their own welfare and the great cause itself.
No corect census has yet been thaken but I estimate the number of blacks now on land in npossession of our forces to be at least 9,000, which is peobably a low estimate.
Very respectfuully, your obedient servant,
T. W. SHERMAN,
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF CENTRAL MISSOURI,
Jefferson City, February 10, 1862.
Captain N. H. McLEAN:
I return heewith the statement of Colonel Julius White, Thirty- seventh Illinois Regiment, conmcerning the conduct of his regiment and partly of himself in the abduction of two negro boys belonging to Doctor Moore, of Syracuse. I inclose also the sworn statement of DOctor Moore in reply to COlonel White. THere is no doubt that the negroes are with Colonel White's regiment and that the material facts are as stated in Doctor Moore's affidavit. Colonel WHite's regiment is at Lebanon under GeneraL Curtis' command and I no longer therfore have cotntrol over it. I therfore regere tehrse papers to the general commanding the department for such action as he deems proper to take.
I will merely state in ths connction that some severe example shoud be made of regimental and company commednders in relation to the indiscriminate plundering which more and more every day is disgracing themarch of our troops. I have given ordrs to the commandiers of columns on the march to Saint Charles to keep mounted patrols on the flanks and rear of their reespective columns with orders to shoot any one detected in plundering or outraging the people of the country. I trust sicerely that some server an publisdc example will be made upon the first opportunity. It is nearly impossible without stratagem to fix such acts upon individuals or to prevent their occurrence whcn officers and men are alike concerned in them either actively or passively.
ia am, catptain, resepctfully, your obedient servant,
HDQRS. OF THE ARMY, ADJUTANT- GENERAL'S OFFIACE,
Washington, Febraury 12, 1862.
Brigadier General THOMAS WI. . SHERMAN, U. S. ARMY,
Commanding, &c., Port Royal, S. C.
SIR: The general-in- chief directs that you send about 300 or 400 contrabands to Key West to be employed on the public works there.
I am, &c.,