them to come in and settle on the reserve upon the False Washita River near Fort Cobb.
As I shall be absent from this post some six weeks or more, it is not likely that I shall be able to give you frequent advice of my movements. There are no mails in the Indian country and I shall have to employ expresses when I desire to send on letters.
We shall have no difficulty with the Creeks, Seminoles, Choctaws, and Chickasaws, either in effecting treaties or raising troops. The greatest trouble will be in regard to arms. Not one in ten of either of the tribes has a gun at all, and most of the guns are indifferent double-barreled. I do not know whether the Bureau of Indian Affairs is a part of the Department of State, and of course whether this is properly addressed to you. I do not address the Commissioner because I understand he is on his way hither. The suggestions I wish to make are important and I venture to hope that you will give them their proper direction. I have already spoken of arms for the Indians. Those arms, if possible, should be the plain muzzle-loading rifle, large bore, with molds for conical bullets hollowed at the truncated end, which I suppose to be the minie-ball. Revolvers, I am aware, cannot be had, and an Indian would not pick up a musket if it lay in the road.
Our river is falling and will soon be low, when steam-boats will not be able to get above Little Rock, if even there. To embody the Indians and, collecting them together, keep them long without arms would disgust them, and they would scatter over the country like partridges and never be got together again. The arms should, therefore, be sent here with all speed.
No funds have been remitted to me, nor have I any power to procure or draw for any, for my expenses or for those of the councils I must hold. It has always been customary for the Indians to be fed at such councils, and they will expect it. I have borrowed $300 of Mr. Charles B. Johnson, giving him a draft on the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for incidental expenses, and if I have a council at Fort Washita shall contract with him to feed the Indians. I have seen Elias Rector, late superintendent of Indian affairs at Fort Smith, and William Quesenbury, appointed agent for the Creeks by the Government at Washington, but who did not accept, and Samuel M. Rutherford, agent for the Seminoles, who forwards his resignation immediately; and have written to Matthew Leeper, agent for the Wichitas and other Reserve Indians; and have formally requested each to continue to exercise the powers of his office under the Confederate States. They are all citizens of Arkansas and Texas and have readily consented to do so.
If we have declared a protectorate over these tribes and extended our laws over them we have, I suppose, continued in force there the whole system. Even if we have not we cannot dispense with the superintendent and agents. I shall also see Mr. Crawford, agent for the Cherokees, and request him to continue to act, as I have requested Colonel Cooper to do as agent for the Choctaws and Chiskasaws. Unless all this were done there would be vast discontent and confusion, and I therefore earnestly request that my action may be immediately confirmed and these officers assured that they shall be continued, and that their compensation shall be the same as under the United States and date from thignation of each or of his acceptance of office under the Confederate States. And I also strenuously urge that no changes be made in these offices. The