Part 7 out of 9
could be best subserved by the formation of two distinct
Indian brigades. To this idea General Smith, when appealed to,
subscribed; but General Steele was dubious about the propriety of
putting Stand Watie in charge of one of the brigades. "He appears to
exercise," said Steele, "no restraint over his men in keeping them
together, and his requisitions upon the depots seem to be made with
utter disregard of the numbers present or even on his rolls."
General Smith conceived it would be possible, by organizing the
Indians into their own brigades and satisfying them that way, to draw
off the white contingent and make of it a separate brigade, still
operating, however, within the Indian country. To Cooper, the thought
of a separate white brigade was most unwelcome. The Indians could be
an effective force only in close conjunction with white troops. The
separation of whites and Indians would inevitably mean, although not
at present intended, the isolation of the latter and, perhaps, their
The various proposals and counter-proposals all converged in an
opposition to Steele. His presence in the Indian country seemed to
block the advancement of everybody. Cooper resented his authority
over himself and Stand Watie interpreted his waiting policy as due to
inertness and ineptitude. So small a hold did the Federals really have
on the Indian country that if Steele would only exert himself it could
[Footnote 887: _Official Records_, vol. 22, part ii, 1055-1056.]
[Footnote 888:--Ibid., 1065.]
broken. But Steele was neither aggressive nor venturesome. His task
was truly beyond him. Discouraged, he asked to be relieved and he
was relieved, Brigadier-general Samuel B. Maxey being chosen as his
successor. Again Cooper had been passed over, notwithstanding
that his Indian friends had done everything they could for him. They
had made allegations against Steele; in order that a major-generalship
might be secured for Cooper and brigadier-generalships for some of
themselves. Boudinot was believed by Steele to be at the bottom
of the whole scheme; but it had been in process of concoction for a
long time and Steele had few friends. General Smith was the stanchest
of that few and even Holmes was not among them.
Obviously, with things in such a chaotic state, military operations
in the Indian country, during the autumn and early winter were almost
negligible. Steele expected that the Federals would attempt a
drive from Fort Smith to the Red River and he collected what forces he
could for that contingency. Little reliance was to be placed upon the
Cherokees since they were intent upon recovering Fort Gibson; but the
Choctaws through whose country the hostile force would proceed, were
the drive made, aroused themselves as in the first days of the war.
They recruited their regiments anew
[Footnote 889: Special Orders, no. 214, December 11, 1863, _Official
Records_, vol. xxii, part ii, 1094.]
[Footnote 890: Steele to S. Cooper, December 19, 1863, Ibid.,
[Footnote 891: Boudinot to Davis, December 21, 1863, Ibid.,
[Footnote 892: Steele contended that between the very natural fear
that the Indians entertained that the white troops were going to be
withdrawn from their country and Magruder's determination to get those
same white troops, it was impossible to make any move upon military
principles [Steele to Anderson, November 9, 1863, Ibid.,
1064-1065]. Steele refused to recognize Magruder's right to interfere
with his command [Steele to Cooper, November 8, 1863, Ibid.,
and they organized a militia; but the drive was never made.
The only military activity anywhere was in the Cherokee country and it
was almost too insignificant for mention. Towards the end of November,
the Federal force there was greatly reduced in numbers, the white and
negro contingents being called away to Fort Smith. The Indian
Home Guards under Phillips were alone in occupation. With a detachment
of the Third Indian, Watie had one lone skirmish, although about one
half of Phillips's brigade was out scouting. The skirmish occurred
on Barren Fork, a tributary of the Illinois, on the eighteenth of
December. Late in November, Watie had planned a daring cavalry
raid into the Neosho Valley. The skirmish on Barren Fork arrested
him in his course somewhat; but, as the Federals, satisfied with a
rather petty success, did not pursue him, he went on and succeeded in
entering southwest Missouri. The raid did little damage and was only
another of the disjointed individual undertakings that Steele deplored
but that the Confederates were being more and more compelled to make.
[Footnote 893: Steele to Gov. Samuel Garland, Nov. 30, 1863,
_Official Records_, vol. xxii, part ii, 1082. Col. McCurtain
of the Choctaw militia reported to Cooper that he expected to have
fifteen hundred Choctaws assembled by December first [Steele to Cano,
December 2, 1863, Ibid., 1085]. The Second Choctaw regiment
continued scattered and out of ammunition [Steele to Cooper, December
22, 1863, Ibid., 1109]. The Seminole battalion was ordered to
report to Bourland for frontier defence [Duval to Cooper, December 20,
1863, Ibid., 1102].]
[Footnote 894: Britton, _Civil War on the Borde_, vol. ii, 236.]
[Footnote 895: _Official Records_, vol. xxii, part i, 781-782.]
[Footnote 896:--Ibid., part ii, 722, 746, 752.]
XIII. ASPECTS, CHIEFLY MILITARY, 1864-1865
The assignment of General Maxey to the command of Indian Territory
invigorated Confederate administration north of the Red River, the
only part of the country in undisputed occupancy. Close upon the
assumption of his new duties, came a project for sweeping
reforms, involving army reorganization, camps of instruction for the
Indian soldiery, a more general enlistment, virtually conscription, of
Indians--this upon the theory that "Whosoever is not for us is against
us"--the selection of more competent and reliable staff officers, and
the adoption of such a plan of offensive operations as would mean the
retaking of Forts Smith and Gibson. To Maxey, thoroughly familiar
with the geography of the region, the surrender of those two places
appeared as a gross error in military technique; for the Arkansas
River was a natural line of defence, the Red was not. "If the Indian
Territory gives way," argued he, "the granary of the Trans-Mississippi
Department, the breadstuffs, and beef of this and the Arkansas army
are gone, the left flank of Holmes' army is turned, and with it not
only the meat and bread, but the salt and iron of what is left of the
[Footnote 897: Maxey to Anderson, January 12, 1864, _Official
Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 856-858.]
[Footnote 898: To this list might be added the proper fitting out of
the troops, which was one of the first things that Maxey called to
Smith's attention [Ibid., vol. xxii, part ii, 1112-1113].]
[Footnote 899: This idea met with Smith's full approval [Ibid.,
vol. xxxiv, part ii, 918].]
Army reorganization was an immense proposition and was bound to be a
difficult undertaking under the most favorable of auspices, yet it
stood as fundamental to everything else. Upon what lines ought it to
proceed? One possibility was, the formation of the two brigades, with
Stand Watie and Cooper individually in command, which had already been
suggested to General Smith and favored by him; but which had recently
been found incompatible with his latest recommendation that all the
Indian troops should be commanded, _in toto_, by Cooper. One
feature of great importance in its favor it had in that it did not
ostensibly run counter to the Indian understanding of their treaties
that white troops should be always associated with Indian in the
guaranteed protection of the Indian country, which was all very well
but scarcely enough to balance an insuperable objection, which Cooper,
when consulted, pointed out. The Indians had a strong aversion
to any military consolidation that involved the elimination of their
separate tribal characters. They had allied themselves with the
Confederacy as nations and as nations they wished to fight. Moreover,
due regard ought always to be given, argued Cooper, to their tribal
prejudices, their preferences, call them what one will, and to their
historical neighborhood alliances. Choctaws and Chickasaws might well
stay together and Creeks and Seminoles; but woe betide the contrivance
that should attempt the amalgamation of Choctaws and Cherokees.
[Footnote 900: This is given upon the authority of Maxey [_Official
Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 857]. It seems slightly at variance
with Smith's own official statements. Smith would appear to have
entertained a deep distrust of Cooper, whose promotion he did not
regard as either "wise or necessary" [Ibid., vol. xxii, part
[Footnote 901: Cooper to T.M. Scott, January, 1864 [Ibid., vol.
xxxiv, part ii, 859-862].]
[Illustration: FACSIMILE OF MONTHLY INSPECTION REPORT OF THE FIRST
CREEK REGIMENT OF MOUNTED VOLUNTEERS.]
It seems a little strange that the Indians should so emphasize their
national individualism at this particular time, inasmuch as six of
them, the Choctaw, Chickasaw, Cherokee, Creek, Seminole, and Caddo,
professing to be still in strict alliance with the Southern States,
had formed an Indian confederacy, had collectively re-asserted their
allegiance, pledged their continued support, and made reciprocal
demands. All these things they had done in a joint, or general,
council, which had been held at Armstrong Academy the previous
November. Resolutions of the council, embodying the collective pledges
and demands, were even at this very moment under consideration by
President Davis and were having not a little to do with his attitude
toward the whole Maxey programme.
In the matter of army reorganization, Smith was prepared to concede
to Maxey a large discretion. The brigading that would most
comfortably fit in with the nationalistic feelings of the Indians and,
at the same time, accord, in spirit, with treaty obligations and also
make it possible for Cooper to have a supreme command of the Indian
forces in the field was that which Cooper himself advocated, the same
that Boudinot took occasion, at this juncture, to urge upon President
Davis. It was a plan for three distinct Indian brigades, a
Cherokee, a Creek-Seminole, and a Choctaw-Chickasaw. Maxey thought "it
would be a fine recruiting order," yet, notwithstanding, he gave
[Footnote 902: _Official Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 917.]
[Footnote 903: Boudinot to Davis, January 4, 1864 [Ibid., vol.
liii, supplement, 920-921]. Boudinot also suggested other things, some
good, some bad. He suggested, for instance, that Indian Territory be
attached to Missouri and Price put in command. Seddon doubted if Price
would care for the place [Ibid., 921].]
[Footnote 904:--Ibid., vol. xxxiv, part ii, 858.]
preference for the two brigade plan. The promotion of Cooper,
implicit in the three brigade plan, was not at all pleasing to General
Smith; for he thought of it as reflecting upon Steele, whom he loyally
described as having "labored conscientiously and faithfully in
the discharge of his duties." With Steele removed from the
scene--and he was soon removed for he had been retained in the
Indian country only that Maxey might have for a brief season the
benefit of his experience--the case was altered and Boudinot
again pressed his point, obtaining, finally, the assurance of
the War Department that so soon as the number of Indian regiments
justified the organization of three brigades they should be
The formation of brigades was only one of the Indian demands that had
emanated from the general council. Another was, the establishment of
Indian Territory as a military department, an arrangement altogether
inadvisable and for better reasons than the one reason that Davis
offered when he addressed the united nations through their principal
chiefs on the twenty-second of February. Davis's reason was that
[Footnote 905: Maxey to Smith, January 15, 1864, _Official
Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 875.]
[Footnote 906:--Ibid., vol. xxii, part ii, 1101-1102.]
[Footnote 907:--Ibid., vol. xxxiv, part ii, 845, 848.]
[Footnote 908: So Smith explained [Ibid., 845], when Steele
objected to staying in the Indian Territory in a subordinate capacity
[Ibid., vol. xxii, part ii, 1108]. Steele was transferred to
the District of Texas [Ibid., vol. xxxiv, part ii, 961]. The
withdrawal of Steele left Cooper the ranking officer and the person on
whom such a command, if created, would fall [Ibid., vol. liii,
[Footnote 909: Boudinot to Davis, February 11, 1864, Ibid.,
[Footnote 910: Seddon to Davis, February 22, 1864, Ibid.,
[Footnote 911: Richardson, _Messages and Papers of the
Confederacy_, vol. i, 477-479; _Official Records_, vol. xxxiv,
part iii, 824-825. Davis addressed the chiefs and not the delegation
that had brought the resolutions [Ibid., vol. liii, supplement,
1030-1031]. John Jumper, Seminole principal chief, was a member of the
as a separate department Indian Territory could not count upon the
protection of the forces belonging to the Trans-Mississippi Department
that was assured to her while she remained one of its integral parts.
A distinct military district she should certainly be.
When Davis wrote, the ambition of Cooper had, in a measure, been
satisfied; for he had been put in command of all "the Indian troops in
the Trans-Mississippi Department on the borders of Arkansas." It
was by no means all he wanted or all that he felt himself entitled to
and he soon let it be known that such was the state of affairs. He
tried to presume upon the fact that his commission as superintendent
of Indian affairs had issued from the government, although never
actually delivered to him, and, in virtue of it, he was in military
command. The quietus came from General Smith, who informed Cooper
that his new command and he himself were under Maxey.
It was hoped that prospective Indian brigades would be a powerful
incentive to Indian enlistment and so they proved. Moreover, much
was expected in that direction from the reassembling of the general
council at Armstrong Academy, and much had to be; for the times were
critical. Maxey's position was not likely to be a sinecure. As a
friend wrote him,
Northern Texas and the Indian Department have been neglected
so long that they have become the most difficult and the most
responsible commands in the Trans-Mississippi Department. I
tremble for you. A great name is in store for you or you fall into
the rank of failures; the latter may be your
[Footnote 912: _Official Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 848;
Special Orders of the Adjutant and Inspector General's Office, 1864,
_Confederate Records_, no. 7, p. 15.]
[Footnote 913: Cooper to Davis, February 29, 1864, _Official
Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 1007.]
[Footnote 914:--Ibid., 1008.]
fate, and might be the fate of any man, even after an entire and
perfect devotion of all one's time and talent, for want of
the proper means. In military matters these things are never
considered. Success is the only criterion--a good rule, upon the
whole, though in many instances it works great injustice. Good
and deserving men fall, and accidental heroes rise in the scale,
kicking their less fortunate brothers from the platform.
With a view to strengthening the Indian alliance and accomplishing
all that was necessary to make it effective, Commissioner Scott was
ordered by Seddon to attend the meeting of the general council.
Unfortunately, he did not arrive at Armstrong Academy in time, most
unfortunately, in fact, since he was expected to bring funds with
him and funds were sadly needed. Maxey attended and delivered an
address that rallied the Indians in spite of themselves. In
council meeting they had many things to consider, whether or no they
should insist upon confining their operations henceforth to their own
country. Some were for making a raid into Kansas, some for forming an
alliance with the Indians of the Plains, who, during this year
of 1864, were to prove a veritable thorn in the flesh to Kansas and
Colorado. As regarded some of the work of the general council,
Samuel Garland, the principal chief of the Choctaws, proved a huge
[Footnote 915: S.A. Roberts to Maxey, February 1, 1864, _Official
Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 936-937.]
[Footnote 916: Seddon to Scott, January 6, 1864, Ibid.,
[Footnote 917: Moty Kanard, late principal chief of the Creek
Nation, spoke of it as a _noble_ address and begged for a copy
[Footnote 918: Vore to Maxey, January 29, 1864, Ibid., 928;
Maxey to Anderson, February 9, 1864, Ibid., 958; same to same,
February 7, 1864, Ibid., vol. liii, supplement, 963-966.]
[Footnote 919: Inasmuch as the alliance with the Indians of the Plains
was never fully consummated and inasmuch as these Indians harassed and
devastated the frontier states for reasons quite foreign to the causes
of the Civil War, the subject of their depredations and outrages is
not considered as within the scope of the present volume.]
and Cooper was forced, so he said, to "put the members of the grand
council to work on" him. It was Cooper's wish, evidently, that
the council would "insist under the Indian compact that all Choctaw
troops shall be put at once in the field as regular Confederate troops
for the redemption and defense of the whole Indian Territory." The
obstinacy of the Choctaw principal chief had to be overcome in order
"to bring out the Third Choctaw Regiment speedily and on the proper
basis." In general, the council reiterated its recommendations of
November previous and so Boudinot informed President Davis, it
being with him the opportunity he coveted of urging, as already noted,
the promotion of Cooper to a major-generalship.
In January and so anterior to most of the foregoing incidents, the
shaking of the political dice in Washington, D.C., had brought again
into existence the old Department of Kansas, Curtis in command.
Its limits were peculiar for they included Indian Territory and
the military post of Fort Smith as well as Kansas and the territories
of Nebraska and Colorado. The status of Fort Smith was a question for
the future to decide; but, in the meantime, it was to be a bone of
contention between Curtis and his colleague, Frederick Steele, in
command of the sister Department of
[Footnote 920: Cooper to Maxey, February, 1864, _Official
Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 959. The report reached Phillips
that the Choctaws wanted a confederacy quite independent of the
southern [Ibid., part i, 107].]
[Footnote 921: Although Davis's address of February 22 could well,
in point of chronology, have been an answer to the applications and
recommendations of the second session of the general council, it
has been dealt with in connection with those of the first session,
notwithstanding that Boudinot made his appeal less than a fortnight
before Davis wrote. In his address, Davis specifically mentioned the
work of the first session and made no reference whatsoever to that of
[Footnote 922: _Official Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 10.]
[Footnote 923: Ewing wanted the command of Indian Territory,
Arkansas; for Steele had control over all Federal forces within the
political and geographical boundaries of the state that gave the name
to his department except the Fort Smith garrison. The termination
of Schofield's career in Missouri was another result of political
dice-throwing, so also was the call for Blunt to repair to the
national capital for a conference.
But politics had nothing whatever to do with an event more notable
still. With the first of February began one of the most remarkable
expeditions that had yet been undertaken in the Indian country. It
was an expedition conducted by Colonel William A. Phillips and it was
remarkable because, while it professed to have for its object the
cleaning out of Indian Territory, its incidents were as much
diplomatic and pacific as military. Its course was only feebly
obstructed and might have been extended into northern Texas had
Moonlight of the Fourteenth Kansas Cavalry chosen to cooeperate.
As it was, the course was southward almost to Fort Washita.
Phillips carried with him copies of President Lincoln's Amnesty
Proclamation and he distributed them freely. His interpretation
of the proclamation was his own and perhaps not strictly warranted by
the phraseology but justice and generosity debarred his seeing why
magnanimity and forgiveness should not be extended betimes to the poor
deluded red man as much as to the deliberately rebellious white. To
various prominent chiefs
[Footnote 924: _Official Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 167,
[Footnote 925:--Ibid., 188.]
[Footnote 926: Lane, Wilder, and Dole, requested that Blunt be
summoned to Washington [Ibid., 52].]
[Footnote 927: See Phillips's address to his soldiers, January 30,
1864, Ibid., 190.]
[Footnote 928: Phillips to Curtis, February 16, 1864, Ibid.,
part i, 106-108.]
[Footnote 929: Richardson, _Messages and Papers of the
Presidents_, vol. vi, 213-215.]
of secessionist persuasion he sent messages of encouragement and
good-will. More sanguine than circumstances really justified, he
returned to report that, for some of the tribes at least, the war was
virtually over. What his peace mission may have accomplished, the
future would reveal; but there was no doubting what his raid had done.
It had produced consternation among the weaker elements. The Creeks,
the Seminoles, and the Chickasaws had widely dispersed, some into the
fastnesses of the mountains. Only the Choctaws continued obdurate
and defiant. It was strange that Phillips should have arrived at
conclusions so sweeping; for his course had led him within
hearing range of the general council in session at Armstrong Academy
and there the division of sentiment was not so much along tribal lines
as along individual. Strong personalities triumphed; for, as Maxey so
truly divined, the Indian nations were after all aristocracies. The
minority really ruled. At Armstrong Academy, in spite of tendencies
toward an isolation that, in effect, would have been neutrality and,
on the part of a few, toward a definite retracing of steps, the
southern Indians renewed their pledges of loyalty to the Confederacy.
Phillips's olive branch was in their hands and they threw it aside.
Months before they might have been secured for the North but not now.
For them the hour of wavering was past. Maxey's vigor was stimulating.
[Footnote 930: To Governor Colbert of the Chickasaw Nation
[_Official Records_, vol. xxxiv, part i, 109-110], to the Council
of the Choctaw Nation [Ibid., 110], to John Jumper of the
Seminole Nation [Ibid., 111], to McIntosh, possibly D.N.
[Ibid., part ii, 997]. For Maxey's comments upon Phillips and
his letters, see Maxey to Smith, February 26, 1864, Ibid.,
[Footnote 931: Phillips to Curtis, February 24, 1864, Ibid.,
part i, 108-109.]
[Footnote 932: For the itinerary of the course, see Ibid.,
The explanation of Phillips's whole proceeding during the month of
February is to be found in his genuine friendship for the Indian,
which eventually profited him much, it is true, but, from this time
henceforth, was lifelong. He stood in somewhat of a contrast to Blunt,
whom General Steele thought unprincipled and who in Southern
parlance was "an old land speculator," and to Curtis, who was
soon to show himself, as far as the Indians were concerned, in his
true colors. While Phillips was absent from Fort Gibson, Curtis
arrived there. He was making a reconnoissance of his command and, as
he passed over one reservation after another, he doubtless coveted the
Indian land for white settlement and justified to himself a scheme
of forfeiture as a way of penalizing the red men for their
defection. Phillips was not encouraged to repeat his peace
Blunt's journey to Washington had results, complimentary and
gratifying to his vanity because publicly vindicatory. On the
twenty-seventh of February he was restored to his old command or, to
be exact, ordered "to resume command of so much of the District of the
Frontier as is included within the boundaries of the Department of
Kansas." His headquarters were at Fort Smith and immediately
began the controversy between him and Thayer, although scornfully
unacknowledged by Thayer, as to the status of Fort Smith. Thayer
refused to admit that there could be any issue between them for
the law in the case was clear. What Blunt and Curtis really wanted was
to get hold of the
[Footnote 933: F. Steele to S. Breck, March 27, 1864, _Official
Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 751.]
[Footnote 934: T.M. Scott to Maxey, April 12, 1864, Ibid., part
[Footnote 935: This matter is very much generalized here for the
reason that it properly belongs in the volume on reconstruction that
is yet to come.]
[Footnote 936: February 23, 1864, _Official Records_, vol. xxxiv,
part ii, 408.]
[Footnote 937: John M. Thayer to Charles A. Dana, March 15, 1864,
western counties of Arkansas so as to round out the Department of
Kansas. To them it was absurd that Fort Smith should be within their
jurisdiction and its environs within Steele and Thayer's. The upshot
of the quarrel was, the reorganization of the frontier departments on
the seventeenth of April which gave Fort Smith and Indian Territory to
the Department of Arkansas and sent Blunt back to Leavenworth.
His removal from Fort Smith, especially as Curtis had intended, had
no change in department limits been made, to transfer Blunt's
headquarters to Fort Gibson, was an immense relief to Phillips.
Blunt and Phillips had long since ceased to have harmonious views with
respect to Indian Territory. During his short term of power, Blunt had
managed so to deplete Phillips's forces that two of the three Indian
regiments were practically all that now remained to him since one, the
Second Indian Home Guards, had been permanently stationed at Mackey's
Salt Works on the plea that its colonel, John Ritchie, was Phillips's
ranking officer and it was not expedient that he and Phillips "should
operate together." Blunt had detached also a part of the Third
Indian and had placed it at Scullyville as an outpost to Fort Smith.
There were to be no more advances southward for Phillips. Instead
of making them he was to occupy himself with the completion of the
fortifications at Fort Gibson.
[Footnote 938: Thayer to Grant, March 11, 1864, _Official
Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 566.]
[Footnote 939:--Ibid., part iii, 192, 196.]
[Footnote 940:--Ibid., part ii, 651. Blunt would have preferred
Scullyville [Ibid., part iii, 13].]
[Footnote 941: Blunt to Curtis, March 30, 1864, Ibid., part ii,
[Footnote 942: Blunt to Phillips, April 3, 1864, Ibid., part
iii, 32; Phillips to Curtis, April 5, 1864, Ibid., 52-53.]
[Footnote 943: Curtis had ordered the completion of the fortifications
which might be taken to imply that he too was not favoring a forward
Among the southern Indians, Maxey's reconstruction policy was all this
time having its effect. It was revitalizing the Indian alliance with
the Confederacy, but army conditions were yet a long way from being
satisfactory. In March Price relieved Holmes in command of the
District of Arkansas. A vigorous campaign was in prospect and
Price asked for all the help the department commander could afford
him. The District of Indian Territory had forces and of all the
disposable Price asked the loan. Maxey, unlike his predecessors, was
more than willing to cooeperate but one difficulty, which he would fain
have ignored himself--for he was not an Albert Pike--he was compelled
to report. The Indians had to be free, absolutely free, to go or to
stay. The choice of cooeperating was theirs but theirs also the
power to refuse to cooeperate, if they so desired, and no questions
asked. The day had passed when Arkansans or Texans could decide the
matter arbitrarily. Watie was expected to prefer to continue the
irregular warfare that he and Adair, his colonel of scouts, had so
successfully been waging for a goodly time now. Formerly, they
had waged it to Steele's great annoyance; but Maxey felt no
repugnance to the services of Quantrill, so, of course, had nothing to
say in disparagement of the work of Watie. It was the kind of work, he
frankly admitted he thought the Indians best adapted to. The Choctaws
under Tandy Walker were found quite willing to cross the line and
they did excellent service in the Camden campaign, which, both in the
cannonade near Prairie d'Ane on the thirteenth of April and in the
Battle of Poison Spring on the
[Footnote 944: _Official Records_, vol. xxxiv, part ii, 1034,
[Footnote 945: Maxey to Smith, April 3, 1864, Ibid., part iii,
[Footnote 946: For Steele's opposition to Adair's predatory movements,
see _Confederate Records_, chap. 2, nos. 267, 268.]
eighteenth of April, offered a thorough test of what Indians could do
when well disciplined, well officered, and well considered. The Indian
reinforcement of Marmaduke was ungrudgingly given and ungrudgingly
commended. The Camden campaign was short and, when about over,
Maxey was released from duty with Price's army. His own district
demanded attention and the Indians recrossed the line.
Price's call for help had come before Maxey had taken more than the
most preliminary of steps towards the reorganization of his forces and
not much was he able to do until near the end of June. Two brigades
had been formed without difficulty and Cooper had secured his
division; but after that had come protracted delay. The nature of the
delay made it a not altogether bad thing since the days that passed
were days of stirring events. In the case of Stand Watie's First
Brigade no less than of Tandy Walker's Second were the events
distinguished by measurable success. The Indians were generally
in high good humor; for even small successes, when coupled with
appreciation of effort expended, will produce that. One adventure of
Watie's, most timely and a little out of the ordinary, had been very
exhilarating. It was the seizure of a supply boat on the Arkansas at
Pheasant Bluff, not far from the mouth of the Canadian up which the
boat was towed until its commissary stores had been extracted. The
boat was the Williams, bound for Fort Gibson.
[Footnote 947: Williamson to Maxey, April 28, 1864, _Official
Records_, vol. xxxiv, part i, 845.]
[Footnote 948: It had not been Smith's intention that he should go
out of his own district, where his services were indispensable, until
Price's need should be found to be really urgent [Boggs to Maxey,
April 12, 1864, Ibid., part iii, 760-761].]
[Footnote 949: --Ibid., part i, 1011-1013; part iv, 686-687.]
It was under the inspiration of such recent victories that the
southern Indians took up for consideration the matter of reenlistment,
the expiration "of the present term of service" being near at hand.
Parts of the Second Brigade took action first and, on the twenty-third
of June, the First Choctaw Regiment unanimously reenlisted for the
war. Cooper was present at the meeting "by previous request."
Resolutions were drawn up and adopted that reflected the new
enthusiasm. Other Choctaw regiments were to be prevailed upon to
follow suit and the leading men of the tribe, inclusive of Chief
Garland who was not present, were to be informed that the First
Choctaw demanded of them, in their legislative and administrative
capacities "such co-operation as will force all able-bodied free
citizens of the Choctaw Nation, between the ages of eighteen and
forty-five years, and fitted for military service, to at once join the
army and aid in the common defense of the Choctaw Nation, and give
such other cooeperation to the Confederate military authorities as will
effectually relieve our country from Federal rule and ruin."
The First Brigade was not behindhand except in point of time by a few
days. All Cherokee military units were summoned to Watie's camp
on Limestone Prairie. The assemblage began its work on the
twenty-seventh of June, made it short and decisive and indicated it in
a single resolution:
Whereas, the final issue of the present struggle between the North
and South involves the destiny of the Indian Territory alike with
that of the Confederate States: Therefore,
_Resolved_, That we, the Cherokee Troops, C.S. Army, do
[Footnote 950: _Official Records_, vol. xxxiv, part iv, 694.]
[Footnote 951: --Ibid., 695.]
[Footnote 952: Stand Watie to Cooper, June 27, 1864, Ibid.,
part i, 1013.]
unanimously re-enlist as soldiers for the war, be it long or
No action was taken on the policy of conscription; but, in July, the
Cherokee National Council met and, to it, Chief Watie proposed the
enactment of a conscription law.
As a corollary to reorganization, the three brigade plan was now put
tentatively into operation. It was, in truth, "a fine recruiting
order," and Commissioner Scott, when making his annual rounds in
August, was able to report to Secretary Seddon,
It is proposed to organize them into three brigades, to be called
the Cherokee, Choctaw, and Creek Brigades; the Cherokee Brigade,
composed of Cherokees, Chickasaws, and Osages, has already been
organized; the Creek Brigade, composed of Creeks and Seminoles, is
about being so, and the Choctaws anticipate no difficulty in
being able to raise the number of men required to complete the
organization of the Choctaw Brigade.
Behind all this virility was General Maxey. Without him, it is safe to
say, the war for the Indians would have ended in the preceding winter.
In military achievements, others might equal or excel him but in
rulings that endeared him to the Indians and in
[Footnote 953: _Official Records_, vol. xli, part ii, 1013.]
[Footnote 954: --Ibid., 1046-1047. The general council of the
confederated tribes had recommended an increase in the armed force of
Indian Territory and that it was felt could best be obtained, in these
days of wavering faith, only by conscription. The general council
was expected to meet again, July 20, at Chouteau's Trading House
[Ibid., 1047]. In October, the Chickasaws resorted to
conscription. For the text of the conscription act, see Ibid.,
vol. liii, supplement, 1024-1025.]
[Footnote 955:--Ibid., vol. xli, part ii, 1078. For additional
facts concerning the progress of reorganization, see Portlock to
Marston, August 5, 1864, _Confederate Records_, chap. 2, no. 259,
p. 37; Portlock to Captain E. Walworth, August 27, 1864, Ibid.,
[Footnote 956: The most significant of Maxey's rulings was that on
official precedence. His position was that no race or color line
should be drawn in determining (cont.)]
propaganda work he had no peer. At Fort Towson, his headquarters,
he had set up a printing press, from which issued many and many a
document, the purpose of each and every one the same. The following
quotation from one of Maxey's letters illustrates the purpose and, at
the same time, exhibits the methods and the temper of the man behind
it. The matter he was discussing when writing was the Camden campaign,
in connection with which, he said,
... In the address of General Smith the soldiers of Arkansas,
Missouri, Texas, and Louisiana are specially named. The soldiers
from this Territory bore an humbler part in the campaign, and
although they did not do a great deal, yet a fair share of the
killed, wounded, captured, and captured property and cannon can be
credited to them. I had a number of General Smith's address struck
off for circulation here, and knowing the omission would be
noticed and felt, I inserted after Louisiana, "and of the
Indian Territory," which I hope will not meet General Smith's
I would suggest that want of transportation in this Territory will
cripple movements very much....
During my absence General Cooper urged General McCulloch to help
him in this particular; General M. replies he can do "absolutely
nothing." I am not disposed to complain about anything, but I do
think this thing ought to be understood and regulated. Supplies
of breadstuffs and forage, as well as clothing, sugar, etc., all
having to be drawn from beyond the limits of this Territory, a
more than ordinary supply of transportation is necessary. To that
for the troops must be added that made necessary by the destitute
thrown on the hands of the Government and who must be taken care
of. I do not expect General Smith to investigate and study the
[Footnote 956: (cont.) the relative rank of officers [Maxey to Cooper,
June 29, 1864, _Official Records_, vol. xxxiv, part iv, 698-699]
and he held that Confederate law recognized no distinction between
Indian and white officers of the same rank. Charles de Morse, a Texan,
with whom General Steele had had several differences, took great
exception to Maxey's decision. Race prejudice was strong in him. Had
there been many like him, the Indians, with any sense of dignity,
could never have continued long identified with the Confederate cause.
For De Morse's letter of protest, see Ibid., 699-700.]
characteristics of command here so closely as I have. He hasn't
the time, nor is it necessary. In my opinion no effort should be
spared to hold this country. Its loss would work a more permanent
injury than the loss of any State in the Confederacy. States can
be recovered--the Indian Territory, once gone, never. Whites, when
exiled by a cruel foe, find friends amongst their race; Indians
have nowhere to go. Let the enemy once occupy the country to Red
River and the Indians give way to despair. I doubt whether many of
the highest officials in our Government have ever closely studied
this subject. It is the great barrier to the empire State of the
South from her foe now and in peace. Let Federalism reach the Red
River, the effects will not stop there. The doctrine of _uti
possidetis_ may yet play an important part.
I believe from what I have heard that Mr. Davis has a fair
knowledge of this subject, and I think from conversations with
General Smith he has, but his whole time being occupied with his
immense department--an empire--I trust he will pardon me when I
say that no effort of commissaries, quartermasters, or anybody
else should be spared to hold this country, and I only regret that
it has not fallen into abler hands than mine....
Military reorganization for the Indian troops had, in reality,
come too late. Confederate warfare all along the frontier, in the
summer and autumn of 1864, was little more than a series of raids,
of which Price's Missouri was the greatest. For raiding, the best of
organization was never needed. Watie, Shelby, Price were all men of
the same stamp. Watie was the greatest of Indian raiders and his mere
name became almost as much of a terror as Quantrill's with which it
was frequently found associated, rightly or wrongly. Around Fort Smith
in July and farther north in August the Indian raided to good effect.
Usually, when he raided in the upper part of his own country, Federal
[Footnote 957: Maxey to Boggs, May 11, 1864, _Official Records_,
vol. xxxiv, part iii, 820.]
[Footnote 958: For progress reached in reorganization by October,
see orders issued by direction of Maxey, Ibid., vol. liii,
supply trains were his objective, but not always. The refugees were
coming back from Kansas and their new home beginnings were mercilessly
preyed upon by their Confederate fellow tribesmen, who felt for the
owners a vindictive hatred that knew no relenting.
Watie's last great raid was another Cabin Creek affair that reversed
the failure of two years before. It occurred in September and was
undertaken by Watie and Gano together, the former waiving rank in
favor of the latter for the time being. A brilliant thing, it
was, so Maxey, and Smith's adjutant after him, reported. The
booty taken was great in amount and as much as possible of it utilized
on the spot. Maxey regretted that the Choctaws were not on hand
also to be fitted out with much-needed clothing. It was in
contemplation that Watie should make a raid into Kansas to serve as
a diversion, while Price was raiding Missouri. The Kansans had
probably much to be thankful for that circumstances hindered his
penetrating far, since, at Cabin Creek, some of his men, becoming
intoxicated, committed horrible excesses and "slaughtered
Had the force at Fort Gibson been at all adequate to the needs of the
country it was supposed to defend, such raids as Watie's would have
been an utter impossibility. Thanks to Federal indifference and
mismanagement, however, the safety of Indian Territory was
[Footnote 959: Cooper to T.M. Scott, October 1, 1864, _Official
Records_, vol. xli, part i, 783; Watie to T.B. Heiston, October 3,
1864, Ibid., 785.]
[Footnote 960:--Ibid., 793, 794. Cooper described it "as
brilliant as any one of the war" [Ibid., 783] and Maxey
confessed that he had long thought that movements of the raiding kind
were the most valuable for his district [Ibid., 777].]
[Footnote 961: Maxey to Boggs, October 9, 1864, Ibid., part
[Footnote 962: Cooper to Bell, October 6, 1864, Ibid.,
[Footnote 963: Curtis Johnson to W.H. Morris, September 20, 1864
[Ibid., part i, 774].]
of less consequence now than it had been before. The incorporation
with the Department of Arkansas and the consequent separation from
that of Kansas had been anything but a wise move. The relations of the
Indian country with the state in which its exiles had found refuge
were necessarily of the closest and particularly so at this time when
their return from exile was under way and almost over. For reasons
not exactly creditable to the government, when all was known, Colonel
Phillips had been removed from command at Fort Gibson. At the time of
Watie's raid, Colonel C.W. Adams was the incumbent of the post; but,
following it, came Colonel S.H. Wattles and things went rapidly
from bad to worse. The grossest corruption prevailed and, in the
midst of plenty, there was positive want. Throughout the winter,
cattle-driving was indulged in, army men, government agents, and
civilians all participating. It was only the ex-refugee that faced
starvation. All other folk grew rich. Exploitation had succeeded
neglect and Indian Territory presented the spectacle of one of the
greatest scandals of the time; but its full story is not for recital
Great as Maxey's services to Indian Territory had been and yet were,
he was not without his traducers and Cooper was chief among them, his
[Footnote 964: _Official Records_, vol. xli, part iii, 301.
Wattles was not at Fort Gibson a month before he was told to be
prepared to move even his Indian Brigade to Fort Smith [Ibid.,
part iv, 130]. The necessity for executing the order never arose,
although all the winter there was talk off and on of abandoning Fort
Gibson entirely, sometimes also there was talk of abandoning Fort
Smith. So weak had the two places been for a long time that Cooper
insisted there was no good reason why the Confederates should not
attempt to seize them. It is interesting that Thayer notified Wattles
to be prepared to move just when there was the greatest prospect of a
Confederate Indian raid into Kansas.]
ambition being still unsatisfied. In November, at a meeting of the
general council for the confederated tribes, Maxey spoke in his
own defence and spoke eloquently; for his cause was righteous. General
Smith was his friend in the sense that he had been Steele's;
but there soon came a time when even the department commander was
powerless to defend him further. Early in 1865, Cooper journeyed to
Richmond. What he did there can be inferred from the fact that
orders were soon issued for him to relieve Maxey. He assumed
command of the district he had so long coveted and had sacrificed
honor to get, March first, General Smith disapproving of the
whole procedure. "The change," said he, "has not the concurrence of my
judgment, and I believe will not result beneficially."
But Smith was mistaken in his prognostications. The change was not
just but it did work beneficially. Cooper knew how to manage the
Indians, none better, and the time was fast approaching when they
would need managing, if ever. As the absolute certainty of Confederate
defeat gradually dawned upon them, they became almost desperate.
They had to be handled very carefully lest they break out beyond all
[Footnote 965: _Official Records_, vol. xli, part iv, 1035-1037;
vol. liii, supplement, 1027.]
[Footnote 966: In July, 1864, orders issued from Richmond for the
retirement of Maxey and the elevation of Cooper [Ibid., part
ii, 1019]; but Smith held them in abeyance [Ibid., part
iii, 971]; for he believed that Maxey's "removal, besides being an
injustice to him, would be a misfortune to the department." The
suppression of the orders failed to meet the approval of the
authorities at Richmond and some time subsequent to the first of
October Smith was informed that the orders were "imperative and must
be carried into effect" [Ibid.,].]
[Footnote 967: _Official Records_, vol. xlviii, part i, 1382.]
[Footnote 968:--Ibid., 1403.]
[Footnote 969:--Ibid., 1408.]
[Footnote 971: The evidence for this is chiefly in Cooper's own letter
book. One published letter is especially valuable in this connection.
It is from Cooper (cont.)]
Phillips was again in charge of their northern compatriots and,
at Fort Gibson, he, too, was handling Indians carefully. It was in a
final desperate sort of a way that a league with the Indians of the
Plains was again considered advisable and held for debate at the
coming meeting of the general council. To effect it, when decided
upon, the services of Albert Pike were solicited. No other could
be trusted as he. Apparently he never served or agreed to serve
and no alliance was needed; for the war was at an end. On the
twenty-sixth of May, General E. Kirby Smith entered into a convention
with Major-general E.R.S. Canby, commanding the Military Division
of West Mississippi, by which he agreed to surrender the
Trans-Mississippi Department and everything appertaining to it.
The Indians had made an alliance with the Southern Confederacy in
vain. The promises of Pike, of Cooper, and of many another government
agent had all come to naught.
[Footnote 971: (cont.) confidentially to Anderson, May 15, 1865.
_Official Records_, vol. xlviii, part ii, 1306.]
[Footnote 972: For Phillips's own account of his reinstallment,
see his letter to Herron, January 16, 1865, Ibid., part i,
[Footnote 973: Smith to Pike, April 8, 1864, Ibid., part ii,
1266-1269. It was necessary to have someone else beside Throckmorton,
who was a Texan, serve; because the Indians of the Plains had a deep
distrust of Texas and of all Texans [Smith to Cooper, April 8, 1864,
Ibid., 1270-1271; and Smith to Throckmorton, April 8, 1864,
[Footnote 974: Smith issued him a commission however. See
[Footnote 975:--Ibid., 604-606.]
December 30, 1862.
SIR: My letters, in respectful terms, addressed to your Adjutant
General, when I re-assumed command of the Indian Country, late in
October, have not been fortunate enough to be honored with a reply.
This will reach you through another medium, and so that others besides
yourself shall know its contents. I am no longer an officer under
you, but a private citizen, and _free_, so far as any citizen of
Arkansas can call himself free while he lives in this State; and
I will see whether you are as impervious to _all_ other
considerations, as you are to all sense of courtesy and justice.
You were sent out to Arkansas with certain _positive_ orders,
which you were _immediately_ to enforce. You _knew_
that "Gen Hindman never was the commanding General of the Trans.
Mississippi Department," and was not sent there by the War Department;
and that, _therefore_ and _of course_, all his orders were
illegal, for want of power. You _knew_ that he never had any
right to interfere with my command in the Department of Indian
Territory, to take away my troops and ordnance, or to send me
_any_ orders whatever; and that _therefore_ I was
_wholly_ in the right, in all my controversy with him. You
_knew_, also, that in stripping the Indian Country of troops,
artillery, arms and ammunition, he had been guilty of multiplied
outrages, contrary to the will and policy of the President, forbidden
by the Secretary of War for the future, and hostile to the interests
of the Confederacy.
I had been advised by the Secretary of War, on the 14th of July,
before _you_ were unfortunately thought of [in] connection with
the Trans. Mississippi Department, that Gen. Magruder was assigned to
the command of it; and that although I would be under his command,
it was not doubted that my relations with him would be pleasant and
harmonious, and that I would have such latitude in command of the
Indian country, as might be necessary for me to
[Footnote 976: Scottish Rite Temple, Pike _Papers_.]
act to the best advantage in its defence. And by the same letter I was
advised, that it was regretted I had met with so many embarrassments
in procuring supplies; and that an order had been issued from the
Adjutant and Inspector General's Office, to prevent the pursuing of
such courses as I had complained of, in the seizure of what I had
procured; and the Secretary said it was to be hoped that neither I nor
any other officer would hereafter have cause to complain of supplies
being diverted from their legitimate destination. And that Gen.
Magruder might fully understand my position, &c., a copy of my letter
of 8th June, to General Hindman, stating in detail the plundering
process to which the Indian Service had before then been subjected,
was furnished to the former officer. Three several copies of this
letter were sent me, that it might be certain to reach me.
I do not repeat the substance of that letter, for _your_ benefit.
You have known it, no doubt, ever since you left Richmond. You told me
in August, that the War Department was fully informed in regard to the
matters between myself and Generals Van Dorn and Hindman. You spoke
it in the way of a taunt, and as if the Department justified them
and condemned me. You _meant_ me so to understand it. You are a
_very_ ingenious person; inasmuch as you _knew_ the exact
contrary to be true. When I afterwards received the Secretary's
letter, I remembered your remark, and did not doubt, and do not now
doubt, that when you were substituted for Gen. Magruder, you received
the same instructions that had been given _him_ and were yourself
furnished with a copy of the same letter, for the same purpose.
At all events, you were sent out to put an end to his outrages, and to
avert, if you could, the mischiefs about to spring from them. But when
you reached Little Rock, you found him there, and you found that the
troops, artillery, ammunition and stores that had reached and were on
their way there from the Indian Country, under his unrighteous orders,
_and which it was your duty to restore to me_, were too valuable
to be parted with, if that could be in any way avoided. Probably you
foresaw that you might, by and by need to seize money and supplies
procured by me. Twenty-six pieces of artillery, a supply of fixed
ammunition and other trifles, on hand, with $1,350,000 in money, and
over 6,000 suits of clothing in prospect, were the bait Hindman had to
tempt you withal; and for it you
sold your soul, as Faust sold his to Mephistopheles. Your Lieutenant
became your master; you found it convenient to believe his version
of every thing, and to justify him in every thing, and you ended in
making all his devilments your own, and adopting the whole infernal
spawn and brood, with additions of your own to the family.
You told me in August, that you had been prepared to judge me
favorably, until you read my address to the Indians on resigning my
command, but after that, you could not judge me fairly. I did not in
the least doubt the _fact_; but I did _not_ believe the
_reason_. What, moreover, had _you_ to _judge_ in
regard to _me_? You were not sent to _judge_ any body.
Hindman was the criminal you _were_ to operate upon.
And, if you were sent, or had otherwise any right, to judge _me_,
you administered the sort of justice that is in vogue in hell. Before
you _saw me, you heard him_. You adopted all his views, and never
asked me a question in regard to our controversy, or as to my own
action, or the condition of things in the Indian Country. I had been
infamously and assiduously slandered, from the moment when I began to
resist his illegal, impolitic and outrageous attempts to deprive the
Indian Department of every thing, to make it a mere appanage of, and
appendix to, North-Western Arkansas, to take the Indians again out
of their own country, and to compel me to unite in that insane and
miserable "expedition into Missouri," which was projected and planned
by Folly, mis-managed and misconducted by Imbecility and ended, as I
knew it would, in disaster and disgrace. Lies of all varieties were
ingeniously and laboriously invented at and about Head Quarters, and
despatches, by special and _fit_ agents, to be industriously
circulated throughout the Indian Country and Texas, as well as
Arkansas. The Indians were told that I had carried away into Texas the
gold and silver belonging to _them_; while the Texans were made
to believe that I was paying _their_ moneys to the Indians. It
was reported, in Bonham, Texas, by officers sent from Hindman's Head
Quarters, that I was defaulter to the amount of $125,000 and at last
there crawled out from the sewer under the throne, and sneaked about
the Indian Country and Texas, the damnable lie, that an Indian had
been taken, bearing letters from me to the Northern Indians, or, to
the enemy in Kansas; or, as another version had it, from Gen. James H.
Lane to me; and
three months ago it was whispered about that I was a member of the
secret disloyal organization in Northern Texas. Such lies could have
been counted by scores. Most of them are dead and rotten; but some
still live, by means of assiduous nursing. And all these lies, and
more either you or Hindman sent to the President at Richmond.
I say, sir, you never _inquired_ into _any_ thing. You
never wished to _hear_ any thing, whatever from _me_. You
disobeyed the orders with which you were sent as a public curse and
calamity into Arkansas, as if the State were not already sufficiently
infested by Hindman. Is it true that he has lately, upon his single
order, and without the ceremony of even a _mock_ trial, caused
three men "suspected of disloyalty" to be shot; and that, two of them
being proven to him to be true Southern men, he sent a reprieve,
which, either setting out too late, or lagging on the way, reached the
scene of murder after their blood had bathed the desecrated soil of
Arkansas? It has come to me so, from officers direct from Fort Smith.
At any rate, he has put to death nine or ten persons, without any
legal trial. Who is _he_, that he should do these things in this
nineteenth century? And who are _you_, sir, that you should
suffer, and by suffering, _approve_ and adopt them? How many
_more_ murders will suffice to awaken public vengeance?
Was the Star Chamber any worse than Hindman's Military Commissions,
that are ordered to preserve no records? Were the _Lettres de
Cachet_ of Louis XV, any greater outrage on the personal liberty of
_French subjects_, than Hindman's arrests and committal to the
Penitentiary of _suspected_ persons? Was Tristan l'Hermite any
more the minister of tyranny, than his Provost Marshals? or Caligula,
Caesar Borgia or Colonel Kirke any more cruel and remorseless than he,
that you have sustained all his acts, and made all his atrocities your
own? Take care, sir! You are not so high, that you may not be reached
by the arm of justice. The President is above you both, and God is
above him, and _sometimes_ interferes in human affairs.
Unless the late Secretary of War, through the President, sent an
official falsehood to the Congress of the Confederate States, you
were sent to Arkansas with _positive_ and _unconditional_
instructions, that, if Gen. Hindman _had_ declared Martial Law in
Arkansas, and adopted oppressive police regulations under it, _you
should rescind the_
_declarations of Martial Law, and the Regulations adopted to carry
it into effect_. You have not done so. You have not only _not_
rescinded _any_ thing; but you have, by a General Order, long
ago, continued in force all orders of General Hindman, not specially
revoked by you. That order could have no retroactive effect, to make
_his_ orders _to have been valid_ in the _past_. It
could only put them in force for the _future_; and you thereby
made them _your_ orders, as fully as if you had re-issued them.
In so doing, you became the enemy of your country, if not of the Human
race, and outlawed yourself.
You have _yourself_ established a tariff of prices exclusively on
articles produced by the farmers, including the sweet potatoes raised
by old women and superannuated negroes. You leave the Jews and
extortioners, some of the former of whom go about in uniforms,
claiming to be _officers_ and your agents to charge these same
venders of produce, whatever infamous prices they please for wares
they need to purchase with the pittances received according to your
scale of prices, for the vegetables that supply your and other tables.
You pretend, I learn, that the President gave you discretionary power,
in regard to Martial Law, and the Regulations in question. I do not
believe it; for, if he did, then he and the Secretary intentionally
deceived Congress by the equivalent of a lie. Do you pretend that the
President paltered with Congress in a double sense? I put you face
to face. Is it _your_ act, in _defiance_ of orders, that
continues Martial Law in force in Arkansas, stifles freedom of speech,
muzzles the Press, tramples on all the rights at once of the People of
that State, and makes the State itself only a congregation of Helots,
incompetent to be represented in Congress? Is it merely a contest
between you and Phelps, _which_ of the two shall be Military
Governor? If it _is_ your act, then justice ought at once to be
done upon you, lest the President, winking at the outrage, and not
stripping from your back your uniform of Lieutenant General, should
deserve to be impeached, as your accomplice.
Or, do you dare assert that it is _his_ act, because he gave you
discretionary power on the subject, after informing Congress that
Hindman never was Commanding General of the Department, and that you
had been ordered to rescind his declaration of Martial Law,--nay,
after publicly proclaiming that _no_ General had any power to
declare Martial Law? All the Confederacy thanked and applauded
him for so striking at the root of an immense outrage and abuse and
an unexpected public course; but if he has authorized or sanctions
_your_ course, he is unworthy longer to be President. If he has
not, you have defied his orders and justified men in judging yourself
authorized and him guilty; and so you are unworthy longer to be
When I saw you in August, you were greatly exercised on the subject of
my printed address to the Indians, publication of which in Little Rock
you had suppressed, _as if it could do any harm in Arkansas_. You
suppressed it, because it exposed those whose acts were losing the
Indian Country. You wanted to keep what had been taken from _me_,
and to escape damnation for the probable _consequences_ of the
acts, the _profit_ of which you were reluctant to part with. I do
not wonder the letter troubled you; for it told _the truth_, and
condemned and denounced in advance _more_ unjustifiable courses
of conduct that you were about to pursue.
You pretended that it had produced a great "ferment" among the
Indians; and that even many of the Chickasaws had in consequence
of it, left the service. It had produced _no_ ferment, and
_none_ of the Chickasaws had left us. On the contrary, the
Indians were quieted by it, the Creeks re-organized, in numbers, two
regiments, and the Chickasaws five companies. That was its purpose,
and such was its effect.
But to _you_, its enormity consisted in its exposure of the
conduct of two Major Generals. I told the Indians _plainly_, that
it was not _my_ fault or the fault of the Government, but of
these two Generals, that moneys, clothing, arms and ammunition,
procured for them, had not reached them; that troops raised for
service among them had never entered their country; and that, finally,
troops, artillery and ammunition were carried out of it. This
censure of my _superiors_, in vindication of the President and
Government, shocked your tender sensibilities. You were ready to
follow in their footsteps, and already _had_ the plunder; and you
told me that "the act of the officer was the act of the Government."
Did you really _mean_, that the Indians should have been led or
left to suppose that these acts were the acts of the Government?
That would have been _almost_ as great an infamy, as it was to
_take_ the supplies, and so give them cause and reason to believe
the robbery the act of the Government, _and thus excite them to
revolt_. Moreover, when I told you that the act of
the officer was _not_, in the case in question, the act of the
Government; that, if I had permitted the Indians to suppose so,
they would long have left us; and that, to quiet them, I had been
compelled, for three months and more than a hundred times, to explain
to them what had become of their supplies, and how and by whom
they have been seized, you admitted that "that was right for local
explanation." As there could be no objection to telling all, what I
had often told part, that _they_ might tell the rest; and as it
was no more a crime to _print_ than to _say_ it; I have
the right to believe and I _do_ believe that your _real_
objection to its publication was that it exposed _to our own people
the actual_ conduct of other Generals, and the _intended_
conduct of yourself. Have _you_ left the Indians to believe that
the late seizure and appropriation, by _yourself_, of their
clothing and moneys, is the act of the Government? If you have, you
ought to be shot as a Traitor, for provoking them to revolt, and
giving aid and comfort to the enemy.
But you told me, that when you first read my letter, you held up your
hands, and exclaimed, "What! is the man a Traitor?" And you said that
not one of my friends in Little Rock, and I had, you said, a great
many, pretended to justify the letter. You have never found a friend
of mine, or an indifferent person, silly enough to think, like you,
that it savored of treason. It is only rarely one meets a man so
scantily furnished with sense as to misunderstand and pervert what is
written in plain English. I was vindicating myself, and still more
the Government, and persuading the Indians to remain loyal,
notwithstanding the wrongs they had endured. I, too, was an officer;
and _my_ acts _had_ been the acts of the Government.
_My_ promises to them were _its_ promises. The procuring of
supplies by _me_, was _its_ act; and when, reaching or not
reaching the frontier, the supplies were like the unlucky traveler,
who journeyed from Jerusalem to Jericho, _then_ the Government
_ceased_ to act, and unlicensed outrage took its place. And,
further, _my_ act was the act of the Government, when I told the
Indians _why_ they had not received their supplies and money, and
vindicated that Government at the expense of those who were guilty of
the act; and who having done it and reaped the profit, should not be
heard to object that all the world should know what they did, nor be
allowed to escape the responsibility of _all_ the consequences.
If to tell the Indians that other Generals had wrongfully stopped
their supplies, in any degree _resembled_ Treason, that could
only be so, because it _was_ treason to _do_ the act. It
cannot be wrong to make known what it was right and proper to do. The
truth is, that the acts done were outrages, which it was desirable for
the doers to conceal from the Indians. I refused to become a party to
those outrages, by concealing them. I would not agree in advance to
be _silent_, when _you_ should repeat and improve on those
outrages, and consummate what had been so felicitously begun.
I do not doubt that there are assassins wearing uniforms, who are
knaves enough to _pretend_ to read my letter as you do, and to
see in it the desire of a disappointed man to be revenged, even by the
ruin of his country. Power always has its pimps and catamites. These
would no doubt gladly have made my letter the means of murdering me
by that devilish engine of Military despotism, a Military commission,
that is _ordered_ to preserve no records. You, I think really
look upon it with alarm. It is, no doubt, _very_ desirable to
_you_, that the blame of losing the Indian Country, which, if not
already a fact accomplished, is a fact inevitable, should be made to
fall upon me. You, as the pliant and useful implement of Gen. Hindman,
are the cause of this loss; and you know I can prove it. You and he
have left nothing _undone_, that _could_ be done, to lose
it. And you may rest assured, that whether I live or die, you shall
not escape one jot or tittle of the deep damnation to which you are
richly entitled for causing a loss so irretrievable, so astounding, so
unnecessary and so _fatal_, and one which it will be impossible
to excuse as owing to ignorance and stupidity. No degree of
_these_ misfortunes, can be pleaded in bar of judgment.
_You_ will have _forced_ the Indians to go to the North for
protection. _You_ will have _given away_ their country to
the enemy. _You_ will have turned their arms against us. You will
have done this by disobeying the orders of your Government, continuing
the courses it condemned, and to put an end to which it sent you out
here; by falsifying its pledges and promises, taking for others' uses
the moneys which it sent out to pay the Indians, robbing them of the
clothing sent by it to cover their nakedness, and thus thrusting aside
all the considerations of common honesty, of justice, of humanity, and
even of policy, expediency and common sense.
When Mr. C.B. Johnson agreed, in September to loan your Quartermaster
at Little Rock, $350,000 of the money he was
conveying to Major Quesenbury, the Quartermaster of the Department of
Indian Territory, _you promised_ him that it should be repaid to
Major Quesenbury as soon as you should receive funds, and before he
would have disposed of the remaining million. _You got the money by
means of that promise; and you did not keep the promise_. On the
contrary, by an order that reached Fort Smith three hours before Mr.
Johnson did, you compelled Major Quesenbury, the moment he received
the money, to turn every dollar of it, over to a _Commissary_ at
Fort Smith; _and it was used to supply the needs of Gen. Hindman's
troops_; when the Seminoles, fourteen months in the service have
never been paid a dollar; and the Chickasaw and Choctaw Battalion, and
Chilly McIntosh's Creeks, each corps a year and more in the service,
have received only $45,000 each, and no clothing. Was this violation
of your promise, the act of the Government?
To replace the clothing I had procured for the Indians in December,
1861, and which, with near 1,000 tents, fell into the hands of the
troops of Generals Price and Van Dorn, I sent an agent, in June, to
Richmond, who went to Georgia, and there procured some 6,500 suits,
with about 3,000 shirts and 3,000 pairs of drawers, and some two or
three hundred tents. These supplies were at Monroe early in September;
and the Indians were informed that they and the moneys had been
procured and were on the way. The good news went all over their
country, as if on the wings of the wind; and universal content and
rejoicing were the consequences.
The clothing reached Fort Smith; and its issue to Gen. Hindman's
people commenced immediately. I sent a Quartermaster for it and he was
retained there. If _any_ of it has ever reached the Indians, it
has been only recently, and but a small portion of it.
You pretend to believe that the Indians were in a "ferment" and
discontented; and you took this very opportune occasion to stop all
the moneys due their troops and for debts in their country and take
and appropriate to the use of other troops the clothing promised
to and procured for _them_. The clothing and the money were
_theirs_; and you were in possession of an order from the
War Department, forbidding you to divert any supplies from their
legitimate destination; an order which was issued, _as you knew_,
in consequence of _my_ complaints, and to prevent moneys and
supplies for the _Indians_ being stopped: _and yet you stopped
You borrow part of the money, and then seize the rest, like a
_genteel_ highwayman, who first borrows all he can of a traveler,
on promise of punctual re-payment; and then claps a pistol to his
head, and orders him to "stand and deliver" the rest. And you did even
more than this.
For you promised the Acting Commissioner of Indian Affairs, when he
was at Little Rock, about the 1st of October, on his way to the Indian
Country, to give the Indians assurances of the good faith of the
Government--_you promised him_, I say, _that the clothing in
question should go to the Indians_. He told the Chickasaws and
Seminoles, at least, of this promise. You broke it. You did _not_
send them the clothing. You placed the Commissioner and the Government
in an admirable attitude before the Indians; and the consequence has
been, I understand, the disbanding of the Chickasaws, and the failure
of the Seminole troops to re-organize. The consequence will be far
more serious yet. Indians cannot be deceived, and promises made them
shamelessly broken, with impunity.
While _you_ were thus stopping their clothing, and robbing the
half-naked Indians to clothe other troops, the Federals were sending
home the Choctaws whom they had taken prisoners, after clothing
them comfortably and putting money in their pockets. No one need be
astonished, when _all_ the Indians shall have turned their arms
Why did you and Gen. Hindman not procure by your own exertions what
you need for your troops? He reached Little Rock on the 31st of May.
You came here in August. I sent my agents to Richmond, for money and
clothing, in June and July. I never asked either of _you_ for
_any_ thing. I could procure for _my_ command all I wanted.
You and he were Major Generals; I, only a Brigadier; and Brigadiers
are plenty as blackberries in season. It is to be supposed that if I
could procure money, clothing and supplies for _Indians_, you and
he could do so for white troops. Both of you come blundering out
to Arkansas with nothing, and supply yourselves with what _I_
procure. Some officers would be ashamed _so_ to supply
deficiencies caused by their own want of foresight, energy or sense.
_You_ do not even know you need an Engineer, until one of mine
comes by, with $20,000 in his hands for Engineer Service in the
Indian Territory, some of which belongs to _me_ for advances
made, and with stationery and instruments procured by _me_, for
_my_ Department, in Richmond, a year ago; and _then_ you
find out that there are such things as Engineers, and that you need
one; and you seize on Engineer, money, and stationery. You even take,
notwithstanding Paragraph VI, of General Orders No. 50, the stationery
procured by me for the Adjutant General's Office of my Department, by
purchase in Richmond in December, 1861; for the want of which I had
been compelled to permit my own private stock to be used for months.
I no longer wonder that you do these things. When you told me that you
could not judge me fairly, because I told the Indians that others had
done them injustice, you confessed much more than you intended. It
was a pregnant sentence you uttered. By it you judged and convicted
yourself, and pronounced _your own sentence_, when you uttered
The Federal authorities were proposing to the Indians _at the very
time when you stopped their clothing and money_, that, if they
would return to the old Union, they should not be asked to take up
arms, their annuities should be paid them in money, the negroes taken
from them be restored, all losses and damage sustained by them be paid
for, and they be allowed to retain, as so much clear profit, what had
been paid them by the Confederate States. It was a liberal offer and
a great temptation, to come at the moment when you and Hindman were
felicitously completing your operations, and when there were no
breadstuffs in their country, and they and their women and children
were starving and half-naked. You chose an admirable opportunity to
rob, to disappoint, to outrage and exasperate them, and make your own
Government fraudulent and contemptible in their eyes. If any human
action _can_ deserve it, the hounds of hell ought to hunt your
soul and Hindman's for it through all eternity.
Instead of co-operating with the Federal authorities, and doing all
that he and you _could_ do to induce the Indians to listen to
and accept their propositions, _he_ had better have expelled the
enemy from Arkansas or "have perished in the attempt;" and you
had better have marched on Helena, before its fortifications were
finished, and purged the eastern part of the State of the enemy's
presence. If you had succeeded as admirably in that, as you have in
the Indian Country, you would have merited the eternal gratitude of
Arkansas, instead of its execrations; and the laurel, instead of a
halter. I said that you and your Lieutenant had left _nothing_
undone. I repeat it. Take another _small_ example. Until I left
the command, at the end of July, the Indian troops had regularly had
their half rations of coffee. As soon as I was got rid of, an order
from Gen. Hindman took all the remaining coffee, some 3,000 lbs.,
to Fort Smith. Even in this small matter, he could not forego an
opportunity of injuring and disappointing them.
You asked me, in August, what was the need of any white troops at all,
in the Indian Country; and you said that the few mounted troops, I
had, if kept in the Northern part of the Cherokee Country, would have
been enough to repel any Federal force that ever would have entered
it. As you and Hindman never allowed any ammunition procured by me, to
reach the Indian Country, if you could prevent it, whether I obtained
it at Richmond or Corinth, or in Texas, and as you approve of his
course in taking out of that country all that was to be found in it, I
am entitled to suppose that you regarded ammunition for the Indians
as little necessary, as troops to protect them in conformity to the
pledge of honor of the Government. One thing, however, is to be said
to the credit of your next in command. When he has ordered anything
to be seized, he has never denied having done so, or tried to cast
responsibility on an inferior. After you had written to me that you
had ordered Col. Darnell to seize, at Dallas, Texas, ammunition
furnished by me, you denied to him, I understand, that you had given
the order. Is it so? and _did_ he refuse to trust the order in
your hands, or even to let you see it, but would show it to Gen.
Probably you know by this time, if you are capable of learning
_any_ thing, whether any white troops are needed in the Indian
Country. The brilliant result of Gen. Hindman's profound calculations
and masterly strategy, and of his long-contemplated invasion of
Missouri, is before the country; and the disgraceful rout at Fort
Wayne, with the manoeuvres and results on the Arkansas, are pregnant
commentaries on the abuse lavished on me, for not taking "the line of
the Arkansas," or making Head Quarters on Spring River, with a force
too small to effect any thing any where.
I have not spoken of your Martial Law and Provost Marshals
in the Indian Country, and your seizure of salt-works there, or, in
detail, of your seizure of ammunition procured by me in Texas, and on
its way to the Indian troops, of the withdrawal of all white troops
and artillery from their country, of the retention for other troops
of the mountain howitzers procured by me for Col. Waitie, and the
ammunition sent me, for them and for small arms, from Richmond. This
letter is but a part of the indictment I will prefer bye and bye, when
the laws are no longer silent, and the constitution and even public
opinion no longer lie paralyzed under the brutal heel of
Military Power; and when the results of your _im_policy and
_mis_management shall have been fully developed.
But I have a word or two to say as to myself. From the time when I
entered the Indian Country, in May, 1861, to make Treaties, until the
beginning of June, 1862, when Gen. Hindman, in the plentitude of his
self-conceit and folly, assumed absolute control of the Military and
other affairs of the Department of Indian Territory, and commenced
plundering it of troops, artillery and ammunition, dictating Military
operations, and making the Indian country an appanage of Northwestern
Arkansas, there was profound peace throughout its whole extent. Even
with the wild Camanches and Kiowas, I had secured friendly relations.
An unarmed man could travel in safety and alone, from Kansas to Red
River, and from the Arkansas line to the Wichita Mountains. The Texan
frontier had not been as perfectly undisturbed for years. We had
fifty-five hundred Indians in service, under arms, and they were as
loyal as our own people, little as had been done by any one save
myself to keep them so, and much as had been done by others to
alienate them. They referred all their difficulties to me for
decision, and looked to me alone to see justice done them and the
faith of Treaties preserved.
Most of the time without moneys (those sent out to that Department
generally failing to reach it) I had managed to keep the white and
Indian troops better fed than any other portion of the troops of
the Confederacy any where. I had 26 pieces of artillery, two of the
batteries as perfectly equipped and well manned as any, any where. I
had on hand and on the way, an ample supply of ammunition, after
being once plundered. While in command, _I had procured, first and
last_, 36,000 pounds of rifle and cannon powder. If you would like
to know, sir, how I effected this, in the face
of all manner of discouragements and difficulties, it is no secret. My
disbursing officers can tell you who supplied them with funds for many
weeks, and whose means purchased horses for the artillery. Ask the
Chickasaws and Seminoles who purchased the only shoes they had
received--four hundred pairs, at five dollars each, procured and paid
for by _me_, in Bonham, and which I sent up to them after I was
taken "in personal custody" in November.
_You_ dare pretend, sir, that _I_ might be disloyal, or
even in thought couple the word Treason with _my_ name. What
_peculiar_ merit is it in _you_ to serve on our side in this
war? You were bred a soldier, and your only chance for distinction
lay in obtaining promotion in the army, and in the army of the
Confederacy. You _were_ Major, or something of the sort, in the
old army, and you _are_ a Lieutenant General. Your reward I
think, for what you have done or not done, is sufficient.
I was a private citizen, over fifty years of age, and neither needing
nor desiring military rank or civil honors. I accepted the office of
Commissioner, at the President's _solicitation_. I took that of
Brigadier General, with all the odium that I knew would follow it, and
fall on me as the Leader of a force of Indians, knowing there would be
little glory to be reaped, and wanting no promotion, simply and solely
to see _my_ pledges to the Indians carried out, to keep them
loyal to us, to save their country to the Confederacy, and to preserve
the Western frontier of Arkansas and the Northern frontier of Texas
from devastation and desolation.
What has been my _reward_? All my efforts have been rendered
nugatory, and my attempts even to _collect_ and _form_ an
army frustrated, by the continual plundering of my supplies and means
by other Generals, and your and their deliberate efforts to disgust
and alienate the Indians. Once before this, an armed force was sent to
arrest me. You all disobeyed the President's orders, and treated me as
a criminal for endeavoring to have them carried out. The whole
country swarms with slanders against me; and at last, because I felt
constrained reluctantly to re-assume command, after learning that the
President would not accept my resignation, I am taken from Tishomingo
to Washington, a prisoner, under an armed guard, it having been deemed
necessary, for the sake of effect, to send two hundred and fifty men
into the Indian Country to arrest me. _The Senatorial election was
I had, unaided and alone, _secured_ to the Confederacy a
magnificent country, equal in extent, fertility, beauty and resources
to any of our States--nay, superior to any. I had secured the means,
in men and arms, of keeping it. I knew how only it could be defended.
I asked no aid of any of you. I only asked to be let alone. Verily, I
have my reward also, as Hastings had his, for winning India for the
It is _your_ day _now_. You sit above the laws and domineer
over the constitution. "Order reigns in Warsaw." But bye and bye,
there will be a _just_ jury empannelled, who will hear _all_
the testimony and decide impartially--no less a jury than the People
of the Confederate States; and for their verdict as to myself, I and
my children will be content to wait; as also for the sure and stern
sentence and universal malediction, that will fall like a great wave
of God's just anger on you and the murderous miscreant by whose malign
promptings you are making yourself accursed.
Whether I am respectfully yours, you will be able to determine from
the contents of this letter.
ALBERT PIKE, _Citizen of Arkansas_.
THEOPHILUS H. HOLMES, Major General &c.
I. ALPHABETICAL LIST OF SOURCES.
ABEL, ANNIE HELOISE, editor. The official correspondence of James S.
Calhoun (Washington, D.C., 1915).
AMERICAN ANNUAL CYCLOPEDIA, 1861-1865 (New York).
BISHOP, ALBERT WEBB. Loyalty on the frontier, or sketches of union men
of the southwest (St. Louis, 1863).
CENTRAL SUPERINTENDENCY RECORDS. The Central Superintendency,
embracing much of the territory included in the old St. Louis
Superintendency, was established in 1851 under an act of congress,
approved February 27 of that year. Its headquarters were at St.
Louis from the date of its founding to 1859, at St. Joseph
from that time to July, 1865, at Atchison, from July, 1865 to
1869, and at Lawrence, from 1869 to 1878.
In February of 1878, J.H. Hammond, who was then in charge of the
superintendency, reported upon its records to the Commissioner of
Indian Affairs. He spoke of the existence of "eight cases
containing _Books, Records, Papers_," and he enclosed with
his report schedules of the contents of certain boxes labelled
A,B,C,D,E,F,H,L. Of Box A, the schedule appertaining gave this
information: "Old Records, Files, Memoranda, etc., Miscellaneous
Papers accumulated prior to 1869, when Enoch Hoag became
Sup'tCent.Sup'tcy." More particularly, Box A contained "One Bundle Old
Treaties of various years, three (bundles) of Agency Accounts," and,
for the period of 1830-1833, it contained "One Bundle Ancient Maps,"
and one of "Old Bills and Papers."
The collection as a whole, undoubtedly sent into the United States
Indian Office as Hammond reported upon it, has long since been
irretrievably broken up and its parts distributed. Knowing this the
[Footnote 977: 9 _United States Statutes at Large_, p. 586, sec.
2; Indian Office _Letter Book_, no. 44, p. 259.]
[Footnote 978: Greenwood to Robinson, November 21, 1859, Ibid.,
no. 62, p. 272.]
[Footnote 979: Dole to Murphy, June 23, 1865, Ibid., no. 77, p.
[Footnote 980: Parker to Hoag, May 26, 1869, Ibid., no. 90, p.
[Footnote 981: Dr. William Nicholson, who succeeded Enoch Hoag as
superintendent, was ordered to deliver the records to Hammond [Hoyt
to Nicholson, telegram, January 15, 1878, Office of Indian Affairs,
_Correspondence of the Civilization Division_]. Hammond forwarded
the records to Washington, D.C., February 11, 1878.]
investigator is fain to deplore the advent of "efficiency" methods
into the government service. Such efficiency, when interpreted by the
ordinary clerk, has ever meant confusion where once was order and a
dislocation that can never be made good. From the break-up, in the
instance under consideration, the following books have been recovered:
Letter Book, July 25, 1853 to May 10, 1861.
" November 1, 1859 to February 5, 1863.
" February, 1863.
" "Letters to Commissioner of Indian Affairs," May 23, 1855
to October 31, 1859.
" "Letters to Commissioner," "Records," February 14, 1863
to June 6, 1868.
" "District of Nebraska, Letters to Commissioner," June 6,
1868 to April 10, 1871.
" April 12, 1871 to February 21, 1874.
" "Letters to Commissioner," February 21, 1874 to October
" "Letters to Commissioner," October 25, 1875 to January
" "Letters to Agents," October 4, 1858 to December 12, 1867.
" "Letters Sent to Agents, District of Nebraska," December
12, 1867 to August 22, 1871.
Account Book of Central Superintendency, being Abstract of
Disbursements, 1853 to 1865.
CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA. "Jefferson Davis Papers."
These papers, miscellaneous in character and now located in the
Archives Division of the Adjutant General's Office of the United
States War Department, seem to have belonged personally to President
Davis or to have been retained by him. Among them is Albert Pike's
Report of the Indian negotiations conducted by him in 1861.
---- Journal of the Congress, 1861-1865.
United States Senate _Executive Documents_, 58th congress, second
session, no. 234.
Private Laws of the Confederate States of America, First Congress
Private Laws of the Confederate States of America, Second Congress
Provisional and Permanent Constitutions of the Confederate States and
Acts and Resolutions of the First Session of the Provisional Congress
Public Laws of the Confederate States of America, 1863-1864 (Richmond,
Statutes at Large of the Confederate States of America, First
Congress, edited by J.M. Matthews (Richmond, 1862).
Statutes at Large of the Provisional Government of the Confederate
States of America from February 8, 1861 to February 18, 1862, together
with the Constitution for the Provisional Government and the Permanent
Constitution of the Confederate States, and the
Treaties Concluded by the Confederate States with the Indian Tribes,
edited by J.M. Matthews (Richmond, 1864).
Statutes at Large of the Confederate States, commencing First Session
of the First Congress and including First Session of the Second
Congress, edited by J.M. Matthews (Richmond, 1864).
Statutes at Large of the Confederate States of America, Second
Congress (Richmond, 1864).
CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA. Papers of the Adjutant and Inspector
Special Orders (Richmond, 1862).
General Orders, January, 1862 to December, 1863 (Columbia, 1863).
General Orders for 1863 (Richmond, 1864).
Special Orders (Richmond, 1864).
General Orders, January 1, to June 30, 1864, compiled by R.C.
Gilchrist (Columbia, 1864).
---- "Pickett Papers."
State papers of the Southern Confederacy now lodged in the Library
of Congress. Had Pike continued to prosecute his mission under the
auspices of the State Department, these papers would undoubtedly have
contained much of value for the present work, but as it is they yield
only an occasional document and that of very incidental importance.
The papers used were found in packages 81, 86, 88, 93, 95, 106, 107,
109, 113, 118. The "Pickett Papers" were originally in the hands of
Secretary Benjamin. After coming into the possession of the United
States government, they were at first confided to the care of the
Treasury Department and were handed over later, by direction of the
president, to the Library of Congress. The fact of their being in the
charge of the Treasury Department explains the circumstance of its
possession of the original treaty made by Pike with the Comanches, and
the fact that that manuscript turned up long after the main body of
"Pickett Papers" had been transferred to the Congressional Library
suggests the possibility that detached Confederate records may yet
repose in the recesses of the Treasury archives. Between the dates of
their consignment and their transfer, they must have become to some
degree disintegrated. The War Department borrowed some of the Pickett
Papers for inclusion in the _Official Records of the War of the
---- Records, or Archives.
Among these, which are to-day in the War Department in charge of the
Chief Clerk of the Adjutant-general's Office, are the following:
Chap. 2, no. 258, Letter Book, Brig. Gen. D.H. Cooper, C.S.A., Ex
officio Indian Agent, etc., May 10-27, 1865 (File Mark, W. 236).
It is a mere fragment. Its wrapper bears the following endorsement:
War Department, Archive Office, Chap. 2, No. 258.
Chap. 2, no. 270, Letter Book, Col. and Brig. Gen. Win. Steele's
The contents are,
a. A few letters dealing with Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico, March to
July, 1862, pp. 7-22. These letters emanated from the
authority of William Steele, Colonel of the Seventh Regiment of Texas
b. Letters dealing with matters in the Department of Indian Territory,
January 8, 1863 to May 18, 1863, pp. 27-254. Pages 1-6, 23-26, and 47
and 48 are missing.
The list of the whole, as given, is,
Letters Sent--Col. and Brig. Gen. Wm. Steele's command--Mch. 7, 1862
to May 18, 1863, viz.,
1. 7th Regt Texas M. Vols. Mch. 7 to June 20/62
2. Dept. New Mexico, June 24/62
3. Forces of Arizona, July 12, 1862.
4. Dept of Indian Territory, Jan. 8-12, 1863
5. 1st Div. 1st. Corps Trans-Miss. Dept., Jan. 13-20, 1863.
6. Dept. of Indian Territory, Jan. 21 to May 18, 1863.
Chap. 2, no. 268, Letters Sent, Department of Indian Territory, from
May 19, 1863 to September 27, 1863.
This is another William Steele letter book, but is not quite complete.
In point of time covered, it succeeds no. 270 and is itself succeeded
by no. 267.
Chap. 2, no. 267, Letters Sent, September 28, 1863 to June 17, 1864.
Pages 3 to 6, inclusive, are missing and there are no letters after
Chap. 2, no. 259, Inspector General's Letters and Reports, from April
23, 1864, to May 15, 1865.
The cover has this as title: Letter Book A: Insp't Gen'l's
Office--Dis't of Indian Ter'y From April 23rd, 1864 to May 15, 1865.
On the inside of the front cover, appears this in pencil: "Received
from Gen'l M.J. Wright, Oct. 16/79." Some pages at the beginning of
the book have been cut out. Between pages 145 and 196, are reports,
variously signed, some by E.E. Portlock, some by N.W. Battle, and some
by James Patteson.
Chap. 2, no. 260, District of the Indian Territory, Inspector
General's Letter Book, April 23, 1864 to January 7, 1865.
"Received from Gen'l M.J. Wright, Oct. 16/79." From a comparison of
nos. 259 and 260, it is seen that no. 259 is a rough letter and report
book and that no. 260 is a finished product. The 1864 material in no.
259 is duplicated by that in no. 260.
Chap. 7, no. 36. Indian Treaties.
Chap. 7, no. 48. Regulations adopted by the War Department, on the
15th of April 1862, for carrying into effect the Acts of Congress of
the Confederate States, Relating to Indian Affairs, etc. (Richmond,
On page 1, is to be found, "Regulations for Carrying into effect, the
Act of Congress of the Confederate States, approved May 21, 1861,
entitled An Act for the protection of certain Indian Tribes, and of
other Acts relating to Indian Affairs."
FORT SMITH PAPERS. See Abel, _The American Indian as Slaveholder and
Secessionist_, p. 361.
GREELEY, HORACE. The American conflict (Hartford, 1864-1867), 2 vols.
INDIAN BRIGADE, Inspection Reports of, for 1864 and 1865. These were
loaned for perusal by Luke F. Parsons, who was brigade inspector under
Colonel William A. Phillips.
KAPPLER, CHARLES J., compiler and editor. Indian Affairs: Laws and
Treaties. United States Senate Documents, 58th congress, second
session, no. 319, 2 vols. Supplementary volume, United States Senate
Documents, 62nd congress, second session, no. 719.
LEEPER PAPERS. See Abel, _The American Indian as Slaveholder and
Secessionist_, pp. 360, 362.
LINCOLN, ABRAHAM. Complete Works, edited by John G. Nicolay and John
Hay (New York, 1890), 10 vols.
MCPHERSON, EDWARD. Political History of the United States of America
during the Great Rebellion (Washington, D.C., 1864).
MISSIONARY HERALD, containing the proceeding of the American Board for
Foreign Missions (Boston), vols. 56, 57, 60.
MOORE, FRANK, editor. Rebellion Record: Diary of American Events (New
York, 1868), 11 vols. and a supplementary volume for 1861-1864.
PHILLIPS, WILLIAM ADDISON. Conquest of Kansas by Missouri and her
allies (Boston, 1856).
"PIKE PAPERS." On subjects other than Indian, extant manuscripts
written and received by Albert Pike are exceedingly numerous. One
collection of his personal papers is in the possession of Mr. Fred
Allsopp of Little Rock; but the largest proportion of those of more
general interest, as also of more special, is in the Scottish Rite
Temple, Washington, D.C., under the care of Mr. W.L. Boyden. Three
things only deserve particular mention; viz.,
a. Autobiography of General Albert Pike. A bound typewritten
manuscript, "from stenographic notes, furnished by himself."
b. Confederate States, a/c's with. These papers are in a small
file-box and are chiefly receipts from John Crawford, Matthew Leefer,
Douglas H. Cooper, John Jumper, and
others for money advanced to them and vouchers for purchases made by
Pike. There are three personal letters in the box: D.H. Cooper to
Pike, July 28, 1873; William Quesenbury to Pike, August 10, 1873;
William Quesenbury to Pike, August 11, 1873. All three letters have
to do with a certain $5000 seemingly unaccounted for, a subject in
controversy between Pike and Cooper, reflecting upon the latter's
integrity. One of the papers is an itemized account of the money Pike
expended for the Indians, money "placed in his hands to be disbursed
among the Indian Tribes under Treaty stipulations in January, A.D.
1862." It contains an enclosure, the receipt signed by Edward Cross,
depositary, showing that Pike restored to the Confederate Treasury the
unexpended balance, $19,263 10/100 specie, $49,980 55/100, treasury
notes. The receipt is dated Little Rock, March 13, 1863.
c. Choctaw Case. Two packages of papers come under this heading. One
is of manuscript matter mainly, the other of printed matter solely.
In the latter is the _Memorial of P.P. Pitchlynn_, House
Miscellaneous Documents, no. 89, 43d congress, first session, and on
it Pike has inscribed, "Written by me, Albert Pike."
RICHARDSON, JAMES D., editor. Compilation of the messages and
papers of the Confederacy, including the diplomatic correspondence
(Nashville, 1905), 2 vols.
---- Compilation of the messages and papers of the presidents,
1789-1897 (Washington, 1896-1899), 10 vols.
United States of America. Commissioner of Indian Affairs,
_Reports_, 1861, 1862, 1863, 1864, 1865.
---- Congressional Globe, 37th and 38th congresses, 1861-1865.
---- Department of the Interior, Files.
The files run in two distinct series. One series has its material
arranged in boxes, the other, in bundles. The former comprises letters
from the Commissioner of Indian Affairs only, and has been examined to
the extent here given,
No. 9, January 1, 1861 to December 1, 1861.
" 10, December 1, 1861 to November 1, 1862.
" 11, November 1, 1862 to July 1, 1863.
" 12, July 1, 1863 to June 15, 1864.
" 13, June 15, 1864 to April 1, 1865.
The latter were difficult of discovery. After an exhausting search,
however, they were located on a top-most shelf, under the roof, in
the file-room off from the gallery in the Patent Office building.
The bundles are small and each is bandaged as were the Indian Office
files, originally. The bandage, or wrapper, is labelled according to
the contents. For example, one bundle is labelled, "No. 1, 1849-1864,
War;" another, "No. 24, 1852-1868, Exec." In the first are letters
from the War Department, in the second, from the White House. Some of
the letters are from a
given department by reference only. A great number of the bundles have
nothing but a number to distinguish them,
No. 53, January to June, 1865.
" 54, July to August, 1865.
" 55, September to December, 1865.
" 56, January to December, 1866.
United States of America. Department of the Interior, Letter Books,
"Records of Letters Sent."
No. 3, July 22, 1857 to January 3, 1862.
" 4, January 3, 1862 to June 30, 1864.
" 5. July 1, 1864 to December 12, 1865.
" 6, December 14, 1865 to September 22, 1865.
---- Department of the Interior, Letter Press Books, "Letters, Indian
No. 3, August 20, 1858 to March 5, 1862.
" 4, March 5, 1862 to July 1, 1863.
" 5. July 1, 1863 to June 22, 1864.
" 6, June 22, 1864 to April 11, 1865.
Department of the Interior, Register Books, "Register of Letters
Received," Corresponding to the two series of files, are two series
of registers. One series is a register of letters received from the
Indian Office and each volume is labelled "Commissioner of Indian
Affairs." The particular volume used for the present work covers the
period from December 5, 1860 to January 6, 1866. It will be found
cited as "D," that being a designation given to it by Mr. Rapp, the
person at present in charge of the records. The second series is a
register of letters received from persons other than the Commissioner
of Indian Affairs. Each volume is labelled, "Indians."
"Indians," No. 3, January 8, 1856 to October 27, 1861.
'' 4, January 2, 1862 to December 27, 1865.
---- Office of Indian Affairs, Consolidated Files. During the last few
years and since the time when most of this investigation was made, the
various files of the Indian Office have been consolidated and, in many
cases, hopelessly muddled. It has been thought best to refer in the
text, wherever possible, to the old separate files, inasmuch as all
letter books and registers were kept with the separate filing in view.
---- Office of Indian Affairs,
Central Superintendency, boxes 1860-1862, 1863-1868; Southern
Superintendency, boxes 1859-1862, 1863-1864, 1865, 1866; Cherokee,
1859-1865, 1865-1867, 1867-1869, 1869-1870; Chickasaw, 1854-1868;
Choctaw, 1859-1866; Creek, 1860-1869; Delaware, 1855-1861, 1862-1866;
Kansas, 1855-1862, 1863-1868; Kickapoo, 1855-1865; Kiowa, 1864-1868;
Miscellaneous, 1858-1863, 1864-1867, 1868-1869; Osage River,
Otoe, 1856-1862, 1863-1869; Ottawa, 1863-1872; Pottawatomie,
1855-1861, 1862-1865; Sac and Fox, 1862-1866; Seminole, 1858-1869;
Wichita, 1860-1861, 1862-1871.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. Office of Indian Affairs, Irregularly-Shaped
This was a collection made for the convenience of the Indian Office.
The name itself is a sufficient explanation.
---- Office of Indian Affairs, John Ross Papers.
These were evidently part of the evidence furnished at the Fort Smith
---- Office of Indian Affairs, Land Files.
Central Superintendency, box 10, 1852-1869; Southern Superintendency,
1855-1870; Cherokee, box 21, 1850-1869; Choctaw, box 38, 1846-1873;
Creek, box 45, 1846-1873; Dead Letters, box 51; Freedmen in Indian
Territory, 2 boxes; Indian Talks, Councils, &c., box 3, 1856-1864, box
4, 1865-1866; Kansas, box 80, 1863-1865; Kickapoo, box 86, 1857-1868;
Miscellaneous, box 103, 1860-1870; Neosho, box 117, 1833-1865; New
York, box 130, 1860-1874; Osage, box 143, 1831-1873; Osage River, box
146, 1860-1866; Shawnee, box 190, 1860-1865; Special Cases, box 111,
"Invasion of Indian Territory by White Settlers;" Treaties, box 2,
1853-1863, box 3, 1864-1866.
---- Office of Indian Affairs, Special Files.
No. 87, "Claims of Loyal Seminoles."
" 106, "Claims of Delawares for Depredations, 1863."
" 134, "Claims of Choctaws and Chickasaws."