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"again have to ask the militia of Southern Kansas to aid in checking rebel approaches." Some field-works had been erected on the eastern border of Kansas, and I directed these to be armed and others immediately constructed, making the towns of Lawrence, Olathe, Paola, and Fort Scott much more secure against raids, and therefore allowing me to use volunteers and militia that would otherwise be needed to guard these places against bushwhackers. I also sent orders to General Blunt to stop his pursuit of Indiaus and come with all possible speed with such troops as could be spared to Council Grove, so as to be available against rebel invasion. The Second Colorado Regiment, stationed in the edge of Missouri, headquarters at Kansas City, had been ordered to report to me, but at the request of General Rosecrans, and in view of their convenient location, I allowed them to remain where they were. The Fifteenth, Sixteenth, and Eleventh Kansas Regiments Volunteer Cavalry and fractions of the Third Wisconsin were distributed in Southeast Kansas, convenient for concentration at any time and place. The battalion of Colonel Drake, 100-days' men, whose time was nearly out, and a portion of a new negro battery, all amounting to about 4,000 men, was all the available volunteers that I could command. Fortunately I had a large number of mountain howitzers attached to my cavalry regiments, and also three or four batteries of field guns, which were ordered forward and in readiness, so that, in view of the coming crisis, I had upward of thirty pieces of artillery ready for any field and so equipped as to move with the usual rapidity of cavalry. Heavy siege guns were distributed and well arranged at Fort Leavenworth, Leavenworth, Lawrence, Olathe, Paola, and Fort Scott. These preparatory arrangements were in full progress when I received your dispatch of the 24th of September, directing me that all my available force not required against Western Indians should be thrown south on the Fort Scott routes, and adding "large re-enforcements have been sent to the Arkansas to cut off the enemy's retreat." My reply to you, dated the 26th of September, informing you that "my main dependence must be on militia if Price's force come westward," was predicated on the well-founded supposition that I could not draw troops from the remote districts of my command (Upper Arkansas, Colorado, or Nebraska) in time to meet the probable crisis arising from Price's march. Fortunately I had, through the active exertions of Governor Carney, secured and distributed arms and equipments for a large portion of the militia. But another difficulty presented itself. The whole country was engaged in the great National and State political campaign, the very crisis of which seemed to culminate with Price's progress through Missouri. Motives, measures, and men were all distrusted. The Senators, Governor, and people, commanding, composing, and controlling this militia reserve were all fiercely engaged in this political strife. No time for using the militia could be more unfavorable. The ballot-box, not the bayonet, was the weapon sought by the militia, and it required the greatest exertions to draw attention of officers and men from the political to the military necessities of the hour. The work of organizing, arming, and mobilizing an army in thirty days under these circumstances was therefore a most difficult and perplexing duty, requiring the exercise of responsibilities which I hope will receive the approval or indulgence of my superiors, to whom I reported by telegraph almost daily. The enemy steadily advanced from his crossing of the Arkansas on the 8th of September, moving northeast through the State, striking the rich valley of Black River, where he increased and improved his forces by devastating that region 30 R R-VOL XLI, PT I

of country. Following up that valley through Pocahontas, he entered Missouri near the southeast corner, and moved north through the Iron Mountain defiles, meeting no resistance until he reached the vicinity of Pilot Knob, Mo. Here, on the 28th [27th] of September, he met a gal lant resistance by General Ewing, who repulsed his attack on the fort at Pilot Knob, but subsequently evacuated and fell back, allowing Price to move on to Franklin and Washington, striking the Missouri River at the latter place. This intelligence of the progress of the enemy came to me through Major-General Rosecrans, commander of the Department of the Missouri, General Thayer, who commanded at Fort Smith, Ark, and also from scouts sent out by Colonel Blair, who commanded at Fort Scott, keeping me fully informed. During the period to which I have referred I was annoyed by a rebel approach under General Gano, who came within seventy miles of my southern line with a large force and captured a large train at Cabin Creek belonging to General Steele's department. The Indians on the plains also continued to occupy my troops on the overland routes and alarm the people throughout the Territories and western portion of Kansas. As the enemy at Washington, on the Missouri, had reached the turning point of his northern movement (crossing the Missouri not being rational), leaving most of our Federal forces in his rear and right flank, his movement westward toward my department seemed inevita ble. General Rosecrans was re-enforced by troops under General Mower, General Smith, and 100-days' regiments from Illinois, but all these being on the other side of Price the greater the number the more certain and expeditious would be the movement toward my department. The crisis as to the direction of the enemy's movement occurred about the 2d of October, and I telegraphed Colonel Ford, who occupied the district of Kansas City (and therefore my front, in view of the approach of the enemy), to send forward scouts and keep in constant intercourse with General Brown, whose district extended down the Missouri, on the south side of the Missouri River. On the same day I was informed that General Fisk had moved from the north side with a considerable force, to save Jefferson City from the enemy. On the 4th I received the following dispatch from General Brown:

Major-General CURTIS:

JEFFERSON CITY, October 4, 1864—2.50 p, m.

The rebels are on the road between me and Saint Louis, and have cut off all communications. They attacked Hermann last evening and had three pieces of artillery, They have captured railroad train and three locomotives. It is said they also captured four steam ferry-boats. If you support me it must be by direct movement down the river as quickly as possible. Am doing all I can to be ready to defend the place, but the situation is bad. I want infantry and artillery. The rebels have a large force. The appearances are that the enemy are moving up the river.


At 3.55 p. m. he added that General Fisk's command are moving to my support. When he arrives I shall have 6,000 men and eight small pieces of artillery. I telegraphed this intelligence through various routes to General Rosecrans, but lines being down, could get no intelligence through. I took the liberty to suggest to General Brown that

Price should be checked at the Gasconade River. Bridges and boats on the Gasconade and Osage should be beyond all possible use to him. Destroying an eastern span of railroad bridge may be necessary. River too low, and boats too scarce for my movements. Rains will raise streams and Price must be captured. Do not allow your force to be captured. If too small better fall back, but stand as long as you can safely.

On the 5th of October, learning that Price had crossed the Gasconade, I wrote the Governor of Kansas, urging the immediate call of the militia, which letter was subsequently made part of his proclamation and will be set out in this report.


General Fisk advised me of his junction with General Brown at Jefferson City on the 5th of October, and also desired me to send him a battery. On the 6th he reported his advance in skirmishing had met with some loss, and the enemy was coming forward. General Rosecrans telegraphed as follows:

Maj. Gen. S. R. CURTIS:


Saint Louis, October 6, 1864.

You will wish to know our latest [news]. Ewing blew up Pilot Knob and made good [his] retreat to Rolla with his battery, losing only killed, wounded, and " stragglers by the way. Price was reported crossing the Gasconade yesterday on the old stage road to Jefferson City. McNeil and Sanborn finding their aim moved [with] their mounted force to Jefferson City and will hurt Price directly.*


Col. Chester Harding, with 450 men, arrived from Saint Joseph on steamer West Wind, and I directed Maj. S. S. Curtis to take the steamboat Benton and assist in the effort to get this force forward, reconnoiter the country, and bring away stores from Lexington. All boats were directed to protect their pilot-houses and engineer rooms, and these boats were especially guarded and directed to move with great caution if they proceeded below Kansas City, which they did. This movement was retarded by low water, and rebel force in front checked their farther progress at Glasgow, where Colonel Harding took the command and tried to hold the position. Meantime, the enemy moving west of Glasgow, Major Curtis with the Benton and a few soldiers and the crew fought their way back, reporting the position and progress of Price's army. The report of Major Curtis, marked A, shows the thrilling incidents of this expedition, when several of the enemy were killed and wounded and we saved the boat and crew with only one man wounded. On the 7th I received the following from General Fisk:

JEFFERSON CITY, October 7, 1864.

Major-General CURTIS: We have fought the enemy sharply from the Moreau bridge on the Bolton Ferry road, doing them considerable damage. Our loss as yet inconsiderable. We are withdrawing into the trenches; a large force investing; no news of re-enforcements. Will give them the best fight we can and may God give us victory.


On the 8th I wrote Governor Carney urging the proclamation calling out the militia. He had personally urged the reasonable probability that the force under General Rosecrans would be sufficient to overwhelm Price before he could reach us, and very earnestly hoped that the great expense and inconvenience of a general call of the Kansas people might be averted. But the advance of Price continued, leaving

*As sent by Rosecrans this last clause reads-Will hurt Price decidedly.
+ See p. 530.

Jefferson City on his flank without any great efforts to take the gallant troops that held it, and on the 9th of October the Governor of Kansas issued his proclamation, which I immediately promulgated in the following General Orders:

No. 53.

Fort Leavenworth, October 9, 1864.

Governor Carney has issued a proclamation calling out the militia of the State as follows:


"Topeka, October 8, 1864.

"The State is in peril. Price and his rebel hosts threaten it with invasion. Kansas must be ready to hurl them back at any cost. The necessity is urgent. The extent of that necessity the subjoined communications from Major-General Curtis to me will establish:

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'Fort Leavenworth, October 5, 1864.

His Excellency Governor THOMAS CARNEY:

The rebel forces under General Price have made a farther advance westward, crossing the Gasconade, and are now at the railroad bridge on the Osage, abont fifteen miles below Jefferson City. Large Federal forces about Saint Louis and below tend to drive him toward Kansas. Other motives also will induce his fiendish followers to seek spoils and vengeance in this State. To prevent this and join in efforts to expel these invaders from the country I desire that you will call out the entire militia force, with their best arms and ammunition, for a period of thirty days. Each man should be provided with two blankets or a buffalo robe for comfort and a haversack for carrying provisions. No change of clothing is necessary. I want this force assembled on the border, mainly at Olathe, as soon as possible. For that purpose let farmers' teams with provisions and forage be employed to hurry them forward. I will do all in my power to provide provisions and public transportation, but hope every man will be as self-sustaining as possible and ready to join me in privations, hardships, and dangers to aid our comrades in Missouri in destroying these rebel forces before they again desolate the fair fields of Kansas. It is necessary to suspend business and labor until we are assured our property and earnings are not within the grasp of unscrupulous marauders and murderers.

'Confidently believing, Governor, that Your Excellency and all loyal citizens will concert with me in the propriety of this very important demand and give me your hearty co-operation and assistance,

'I have the honor to be, your very obedient servant,

'Governor CARNEY:

'S. R. CURTIS, 'Major-General, Commanding Department.'

'The line is now cut this side Sedalia. This indicates a rebel move by somebody west or south. Hurry up the militia.


'Governor CARNEY:

'FORT LEAVENWORTH, October 8, 1864.

'I request that you issue the call. Let the militia turn out. If not needed they will, of course, be discharged. Their call and collection would enable us at least to give an impetus to Price's departure. In your prompt responses to my requests heretofore I am sure we have saved the State from desolation; let us do it now. The enemy is now near Sedalia, and a fight is expected there to-night. They have burned Syracuse, La Mine, and Otterville depots to-day. You see they seem moving steadily westward. Delay is ruinous.


"Kansans, rally! You will do so, as you have always promptly done when your soil has been invaded. The call this time will come to you louder and stronger because you know the foe will seek to glut his vengeance upon you. Meet him, then, at the threshold and strike boldly; strike as one man against him. Let all

business be suspended. The work to be done now is to protect the State against marauder and murderer. Until this is accomplished we must lead a soldier's life and do a soldier's duty. Men of Kansas, rally! One blow, one earnest, united blow will foil the invader and save you. Who will falter? Who is not ready to meet the peril? Who will not defend his home and the State? To arms then! To arms, and the tented field until the rebel foe shall be baffled and beaten back!



"N. B.-Major-General Deitzler will lead the brave men of Kansas and issue the necessary orders. Commanding officers of brigades and battalions will see that their respective commands are in readiness for immediate service. "THOMAS CARNEY,



In pursuance of this call of the Governor, the militia of Kansas will turn out and rendezvous immediately as follows:

No.- -.

Topeka, Kans., October 9, 1864.

In pursuance of the proclamation of the Commander-in-Chief of the 8th instant, the militia of Kansas will turn out and rendezvous immediately at the points indicated below: Doniphan, Brown, Nemaha, and Marshall Counties, at Atchison, under Brig. Gen. Byron Sherry; Atchison, Leavenworth, Jefferson, Jackson, Pottawatomie, Riley, Davis, Wabaunsee, Shawnee, Douglas, and Johnson Counties, at Olathe, under Brig. Gen. M. S. Grant; Wyandotte, at Wyandotte, under Maj. E. S. Hubbard; Miami, Ösage, Franklin, Morris, and Lyon Counties, at Paola, under Brig. Gen. W. H. M. Fishback; Linn, Anderson, and Coffey Counties, at Mound City, under Brig. Gen. S. N. Wood; Bourbon, Allen, and Woodson Counties, at Fort Scott. Commanders of brigades and regiments will promptly prepare their respective commands for active service for thirty days, unless sooner discharged, and see that each man is supplied with two blankets, a tin cup, knife and fork, and a haversack, and also a coffee pot and frying pan for every five men. Let each regiment and detachment bring its own transportation and all the rations possible, but there must be no delay on any account. The General Government will undoubtedly pay all proper charges for such transportation and supplies, and will furnish rations and forage as far and as soon as possible, at the points indicated in this order. Let each man come with such arms as are at hand and a full supply of ammunition. As this campaign will be a short one, no change of clothing will be necessary. Until further orders the headquarters of the militia will be at Olathe, to which point all returns and communications will be sent.

By order of George W. Deitzler, major-general Kansas State Militia:

JOHN T. MORTON, Assistant Adjutant-General.

All Federal officers in this department will aid in giving circulation and success to this effort to concentrate troops for immediate service. Quartermasters and commissaries will aid to the utmost of their abilities to have requisite provisions accuTulated as fast as possible. An earnest and united movement should animate officers and men, volunteer and militia. Let business and personal strife be suspended, partisan discussions and political animosities avoided, and instead of impatience, fault-finding, and detraction, too common among raw recruits, let every man display the fortitude, patience, and endurance which distinguish the patriotic soldier engaged in the defense of his home and his country. The sooner this call is met the Tore certain will be its success; and the general earnestly appeals to soldiers and citizens to unite all their moral and physical energies in this effort to stifle the fiendish hordes that again threaten the people of Kansas and the peace of our country. By command of Major-General Curtis:

C. S. CHARLOT, Assistant Adjutant-General.

Some defects in the militia law had on former occasions troubled officers in the enforcement of their calls. There was also a large colored population, and many of certain ages that were exempt from the militia organization. I therefore determined to strengthen the force and effect of the Governor's call by proclaiming martial law in Kansas

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