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CHAPTER V

HALLECK

IN

N sending General Hunter to relieve Frémont CHAP. V.

the President did not intend that he should remain in charge of the Department of the West. Out of its vast extent the Department of Kansas was created a few days afterward, embracing the Nov. 9, 1861. State of Kansas, the Indian Territory west of Arkansas, and the Territories of Nebraska, Colorado, and Dakota, with headquarters at Fort Leavenworth, and Hunter was transferred to its command. General Halleck was assigned to the Department of the Missouri, embracing the States of Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Arkansas, and that portion of Kentucky west of the Cumberland River, to become the more permanent successor of Frémont. By this division the Government had a III., P. 567. special object in view, namely, to organize a column which should march southward along the Western frontier, and by such a march bring about several results, each of them important in itself and of cumulative influence upon the general plan of Western operations then in contemplation. It would protect the State of Kansas. It would serve to hold or repossess the Indian Territory. It would, by a comparatively short route, reach and

VOL. V. -6

W. R. Vol.

81

CHAP. V.

enter the northeastern corner of the State of Texas, where it might perhaps encourage the overawed and suppressed Union sentiment; or, in the alternative, effect a junction with an expedition to be sent by sea, and thus hold the Lone Star State to her Federal allegiance. But all this would be contingent upon unchecked success.

It was known that such an enterprise would encounter serious obstacles. The Confederate Government had, among its earliest movements, reached out boldly to secure the Indian Territory. Under shelter of the Arkansas insurrection General Albert Pike, with flatteries and promises, secured a nominal adhesion of the principal Indian chiefs to the Confederacy. It was, perhaps, not unknown to him that, with the usual fickleness of savage policy, some of them were making equally ardent and equally untrustworthy protestations on the other side. On the whole, the rebellion had the better prospect of retaining their support, since for the moment it was in practical possession of the Indian Territory, with four regiments of Indians organized as the nucleus of a Confederate army. This, however, was the highest stage of its success. No strong Confederate forces made their appearance ; no Confederate battles were won; the promised annuities did not arrive from the Confederate Treasury; and the faith and coöperation of the Indians began to wane.

As elsewhere in the South, loyalty to the Union was not wholly extinguished. A loyal Creek chief, Hopoeithleyohola, raised the banner of revolt against secession, gathered something over two thousand adherents, and fought several battles during the months of No

vember and December, 1861. It required all the chap. V. available Indian forces in Confederate pay to suppress and hold in check this armed demonstration in favor of the flag which, for half a century, had brought to the red men the voice of friendship and stated instalments of money and goods to redeem the promise of old and solemn treaties.

In addition to the danger in its intended pathway the proposed expedition encountered fatal obstacles in its very organization. Among the earliest calls for troops President Lincoln had given Senator James H. Lane authority to raise a brigade in Kansas. The regiments composing it contained much of that free and reckless fighting material of the frontier, which had been educated by the Missouri border ruffians to guerrilla methods. The necessity of defending the Kansas border against secession bushwhackers from Missouri kept these regiments at home and continued their predatory habits; and in their rapid forays Halleok to they often failed to discriminate between friend and foe. Halleck, the new commander of the Department of the West, several times had occasion to complain of their mischief. He protested against 1861. W.R. Lane's appointment as brigadier-general. He not pp. 449, 456. only disavowed the lawlessness committed by Lane's men, but issued orders to drive them from his department; or, if caught, to disarm them and hold them prisoners. “They are no better," he wrote, " than a band of robbers; they cross the line, rob, steal, plunder, and burn whatever they can lay their hands upon. They disgrace the name and uniform of American soldiers and are driving 1862. w 'R. good Union men into the ranks of the secession

Dec. 19,

1861, with Lincoln Endorse

ment, Dec. 27,

Halleck to
Thomas,
Jan. 18,

Vol. VIII.,

p. 507.

*

Halleck to

p. 509.

CHAP. V. army.” President Lincoln saw that a substratum of

personal prejudice lay under this somewhat harsh condemnation, which extended not merely to Lane's soldiers, but to the entire separate Texas expedition

as well. Halleck complained of “movements havMoClellan, ing been governed by political expediency, and in 1862. W.R. many cases directed by politicians in order to

subserve particular interests." Lane was, indeed, chargeable with a selfish ambition in this proposed movement, and soon endeavored even to supplant Hunter.

Lincoln, recognizing Lane's great energy and influence in Kansas, had intended to make it tributary to the Union cause, but he had no idea of giving him the superior direction or management. His letters show with what prudence, but also with what firmness, he interfered to regulate this distant personal entanglement. “It is my wish,” he wrote, January 31, 1862, “that the expedition commonly called the ‘ Lane Expedition shall be, as much as has been promised at the Adjutant-General's office, under the supervision of General McClellan, and not any more. I have not intended, and do not now intend, that it shall be a great, exhausting affair, but a snug, sober column of 10,000 or 15,000. General Lane has been told by me many times that

he is under the command of General Hunter, and Secretary assented to it as often as told. It was the distinct 1862. wo'r. agreement between him and me, when I appointed

him, that he was to be under Hunter.” All Lane's efforts to set aside Hunter proved fruitless. Under date of February 10, 1862, Lincoln repeated his decision: "My wish has been and is to avail the Government of the services of both General Hunter

Lincoln to

Jan. 31,

Vol. VIII.,

p. 638.

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Lincoln to
Hunter

Vol. VIII.,

p. 551.

and General Lane, and, so far as possible, to person- CHAP. V. ally oblige both. General Hunter is the senior officer, and must command when they serve together; though, in so far as he can, consistently with the public service and his own honor, oblige General Lane he will also oblige me. If they cannot come to an amicable understanding, General Lane must and Lane, report to General Hunter for duty, according to 1862. W.'R. the rules, or decline the service." Naturally after this Lane lost his interest in the expedition, of which he had caused himself to be proclaimed the real leader and hero. Halleck's decided aversion to the whole scheme already rendered it practically useless, and other causes soon assisted to divert the forces gathered for the purpose to different destinations. It came officially to an end when, on March 11, 1862, Hunter's department was once more consolidated with Halleck's.

Henry Wager Halleck was born in Westernville, Oneida County, New York, January 15, 1815. He was educated at Union College, and entered the military academy at West Point, where he was graduated third in a class of thirty-one, and was made second lieutenant of engineers July 1, 1839. While yet a cadet he was employed at the academy as assistant professor of engineering. From the first he devoted himself with constant industry to the more serious studies of his profession. He had attained a first lieutenancy when the Mexican war broke out, and was sent to the Pacific coast. А variety of valuable services in the military and naval operations prosecuted there secured him the brevet of captain from May 1, 1847. On the conquest of California by the United States forces, he

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