Today in History:

111 Series I Volume XXXIV-III Serial 63 - Red River Campaign Part III


you our desire to give you all the assistance in our power in your position as commander of North Missouri. We may congratulate you and ourselves that the district you now command, and of which we are residents, has so far fared well compared with many portions of our war-devastated State. We sincerely trust we may hereafter escape the ravages of war as we have heretofore done, but desire to state to you that we have grave apprehensions that such will not be the case, especially if there shall be any further letting up of military power, which alone has saved us. More or less troops have been in this section for two years past until quite recently. The rebellious spirit of the people seemed to be subdued, and the military force has been gradually withdrawn, but this giving up of the rebellion and its objects was only apparent, as is now evidenced by the increased and daily increasing boldness of rebels and Southern sympathizers.

Our immediate section is much troubled with marauders; but few of the people stand out against them, a large number either being too much intimidated to oppose them, even in the giving of information, while by far too many evidently regard these outlaws as aiders of the Southern cause, and of course opponents of the Federal Government. This is evidenced in the fact that Union men, and men who have abandoned the Southern cause and evidenced a willingness to aid the Federal Government, are nine cases in ten the sufferers at the hands of these brigands. We cordially indorse the sentiments uttered in your telegraphic dispatch to the assistant provost-marshal at this place. That is the basis we have been striving to get people on for months past, but, we regret to say, with but little success. We are satisfied, general, as matters now stand, that unconditional unionism, such as we profess, will continue to grow weaker as the rebel spirit grows bolder, until it will not be safe for a free, outspoken defender of our Government to reside here.

Another fact we desire to call your attention to. Large numbers of people are moving from the south to the north side od the river. Of these there is an unusual number of women, children, and aged men. They are doubtless the families of men who are in the Southern Army, who have found the south side, where Federal troops are abundant and active, too hot for them, and hence their migration. In time their husbands, sons, brothers, and fathers (rebel soldiers) will follow them, and we may yet witness the scenes enacted in the border, southwestern, and southeastern counties. It is believed not a few of the men of these families are now on the north side of the river.

We submit the facts and our impressions, leaving the remedy to your superior judgment. We beg to add, in conclusion, that we believe the public peace and safety would be conserved by stationing at this place a company or part of a company of good soldiers commanded by active and efficient officers. Tendering you our well wishes for your success in the cause in which you are engaged, we subscribe ourselves,

Your obedient servants,