Today in History:

1076 Series I Volume XLI-II Serial 84 - Price's Missouri Expedition Part II


he has information that a heavy column is preparing in Little Rock for a movement toward Monticello and Southeastern Arkansas, supposed to be a cotton-stealing expedition.

I remain, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brigadier-General and Chief of Staff.

Mount Elba, August 22, 1864.

Major EWING,

Assistant Adjutant-General:

Officer in charge of pickets reports everything quiet in front. I have sent a scouting party in charge of a lieutenant in the direction of Pine Bluff, which will not report, however, before to-morrow evening. The distance from this point to the approaches to Monticello, being so great I am fearful it will be impossible for me to furnish information with sufficient rapidity to General Dockery to make it entirely safe if my scouts are his only reliance in his front. The directions in this particular from the major-general commanding division were not constructed to mean that I should regularly picket the approaches to Moticello, and hence have only a scouting party for that purpose. Citizens in this neighborhood report that the force in Pine Bluff and neighborhood amounts of all arms to 1,800 men - three regiments of cavalry, balance infantry and artillery. Clayton with the cavalry regiments on the north of Arkansas River, five miles from Pine Bluff. They also report the command dying very rapidly. Have heard nothing from Little impossible to procure it on this [side]. I think I can procure two or three days' [forage] within four or five miles on south side. The pontoon bridge was finished yesterday and is in good condition. I desire especially to call the attention of the major-general commanding to the sick of this brigade present in camp. There are a large number who could be made fit for duty in two or three days. The surgeon informs me if quinine was furnished the command all men who are suffering simply with chills (and that comprehends nine-tenths of the cases) can accompany the proposed expedition and be cured on the march. The surgeons are entirely destitute of quinine. I have in the guard-house nine men captured from a raft on the Mississippi on their way to Vicksburg. They are from Missouri, and some of them known to members of this command. One of the men (Bayley) is known to be a bad character; the rest were regarded as Southern men when members of this command knew them; six of them would make soldiers for the infantry. Two others captured on the river report themselves as belonging to the secret service; would do for the same arm of the service. I would like very much to be rid of them. I send up a field return this morning showing large increase in the command in last few days. I am preparing everything for active service as fast as limited means will allow. If horseshoes could be furnished we could do well. Major King informed me that a large supply was on the way up from Camden. If you have any knowledge of forces on this side of Saline I would like very much to know how they are disposed.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,