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27th Iowa Top Banner

History of Buchanan County, Iowa 1842 to 1881
Transcribed by Tommy Joe Fulton and Peggy Hoehne

page 205


MESSRS. EDITORS: - The masterly retreat of the Red river expedition is completed, and the army is safe. After the battle of the Old Oaks, on the eighteenth, the enemy concluded to let us depart in peace. . . The summary of the results of the expedition, which I sent you some time since, needs no particular amendment, except the addition of the loss of the boats mentioned in my last, and of about two hundred men lost on the march from Alexandria, and at Old Oaks. A senseless plan was most miserably executed. What business thirty thousand men had in that country at the present juncture, no one knows. But for the probability of capturing cotton and sugar, it is certain they would never have been sent there. General Banks' policy has always been to scatter his men all over the country. If cotton-traders are permitted, encouraged, and assisted, the inference is plain that General Banks is largely in the cotton business. If he is not, he has taken such a course as to induce the belief, and must suffer accordingly. The strictures of the northern press upon his operations are heartily endorsed by the army. General Canby assumes his command with the full confidence of the army in his integrity and military ability.

Some of both companies C and H are sick, but I believe none dangerously.

H. C. H.