Today in History:

25 Series I Volume L-I Serial 105 - Pacific Part I


AUGUST 15-22, 1861. -Expedition from Fort Crook to the Pitt River, Cal., with skirmish (19th) near Kellogg's Lake, Cal.

Report of Lieutenant John Feilner, First U. S. Dragoons.

FORT CROOK, CAL., August 25, 1861.

Captain R. C. DRUM,

Assistant Adjutant-General, U. S. Army, San Francisco, Cal.:

CAPTAIN: I have the honor to inclose Lieutenant Feilner's report. As I have but twenty-eight horses now in the company altogether, it is impossible to do anything with these Indians this fall. In case that I get horses to fill up company complement, I will go over with the company when the first snow falls.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Second Lieutenant, First Dragoons, Commanding.

FORT CROOK, CAL., August 23, 1861.

SIR: In compliance with Post Order, No. -, headquarters Fort Crook, Cal., August 14, 1861, I left this post August 15, 1861, with two Dragoons, and Mr. Pugh as guide, in a northeast direction to retake that cattle taken by the various Indian tribes east and north of this post, and punish those Indians. The first day, August 15, I marched into Big or Round Valley ana encamped on the eastern side, on Sage Hen Creek. Thirty miles; plenty of wood, grass and water. August 16, marched east. About noon I saw several Indian spies to the right and left on the mountains. I sent two parties in pursuit. The mountains being very rocky and brushy, the Indians easily kept out of shot range and escaped. We encamped in Mercer's Valley, east side. This valley is well watered by a number of springs, forming a considerable creek, which takes, after leaving the valley on the northwest side, an almost westerly course, emptying into Sage Hen Creek, then into Pitt River, in Big or Round Valley. Twenty-five miles. August 17, started ina northeast direction, across the mountains; found all along abundance of grass, wood, and water (sprongs), and plenty signs of Indians. About 11 a. m. came in sight of a large valley extending northwest to southeast. On the west side, by a spring and plenty of grass, we found tracks of about fifteen head of cattle; also ponies' tracks. Taking a north-northeast course toward the South Fork of Pitt River, we tracked them until evening, when we lost them in the rocky country. The valley last spoken of is poorly supplied with water and grass. We encamped on South Fork of Pitt River. Thirty miles; plently of wood, water, and grass.

August 18, found cattle trail again; also another where about 200 head must have passed. Followed in a southeast direction across the moutains, and came, after about there hours' travel, to a little flat with plenty of grass and a little spring. Here we found that the Indians had camped and butchered about twenty-five head of cattle. About forty or fifty horses must have been in camp at this place, and it seems that the breef was taken away on pack animals in diffrent directions, some toward Willow Creek, emptying in Susan River; some toward Smoke Creek, emptying into Lower Mud Lake. About twenty head of cattle were driven by about twenty or twenty-five horsemen toward the