« ПретходнаНастави »
offences not expressly embraced in the existing articles, will be enacted. I have had a conversation on the subject with the chairman of the committee of the Senate, and understand from him that he had given it his attention, and did not consider legislation necessary, as the right to punish in such cases necessarily resulted from the condition of things when an army is prosecuting hostilities in an enemy's country.
Your expedition is a matter of deep anxiety to all, and certainly to none more than myself. Every possible effort, so far as I know, has been made in each branch of this department, to carry out fully and promptly all the arrangements which devolved upon it in the way of preparation and outfit. The difficulties have been more than were anticipated, but they have been met with energy. The time for preparations on so large a scale was short, and the arrangements multifarious; the execution of some depended on the prior execution of others. Delays to some extent were unavoidable; but I trust none have occurred which will result in a serious detriment to the service; none which any one well acquainted with our condition and what was required to be done, would not have expected. We are expecting daily information from you, and calculate that the next we receive will apprise us that you have embarked and are on your way to the point of your destination. The account you give of the frequency and violence of the "terrible northers" is to me a source of deep anxiety. They are, in my judgment, the most formidable enemy you will have to encounter. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. L. MARCY.
Major General WINFIELD SCOTT,
WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, February 22, 1847.
SIR: I have received your letter of the 28th ultimo, (No. 8,), with the enclosures, numbered from 1 to 6, inclusive, in relation to the arrest of Colonel W. S. Harney. These papers have been submitted to the President, and I am directed by him to say that he regrets the occurrence. Recognizing, as he does to the fullest extent, your rights as commanding general in the field, and disposed to sustain you in the ample exercise of them, he is not at liberty, as commander-in-chief, to overlook the consideration that the officers under you have their rights, which it is equally his duty
In the case as you have presented it, he does not discover a sufficient cause for the order depriving Colonel Harney of the command which appropriately belonged to him, and devolving it upon his inferior in rank. Without intending to approve of the conduct of Colonel Harney in disobeying your orders, the President deems it proper to apprise you of his opinion that Colonel Harney had
good cause to complain of that order, as derogatory to his rights, and he hopes that the matter has been reconsidered by you, and that the colonel has been restored to his appropriate command. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. L. MARCY,
Major General WINFIELD SCOTT,
Commanding the army of the U. States in Mexico.
HEAD-QUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Brassos San Iago, February 4, 1847.
SIR: No mail has arrived from New Orleans since I had the honor to address you the 28th ultimo. Two steamers are now due from that place. Neither may be expected to return in several weeks, as all will be needed, probably, to take troops, &c., south. This despatch will go to-day by a return schooner.
Though many ships, doubtless, must now be nearly up to receive the troops waiting here and at Tampico, not one has arrived. The Saint Louis, from Philadelphia, freighted with boats of debarkation, &c., is off this bar, and we know nothing of the near approach of any ship with ordnance, ordnance stores, and other siege materials.
I am becoming exceedingly anxious for the arrival of all the vessels that are due. The season for operations on the coast is already short, and I am personally wanted at Tampico and Lobos. I cannot, however, leave here without some certainty as to the near approach of essentials.
The 1st Pennsylvania regiment of volunteers, the Louisiana volunteers, and a part of the New York volunteers, had passed this place before my general order (No. 6) of the 30th ultimo. At that date, I intended to take with me four regiments of the new volunteers only, leaving the remainder for Major General Taylor. The three mentioned, being up, in whole or in part, were ordered to Lobos; and wishing, as far as practicable, to keep regiments of the same State together, the 2d Pennsylvania was designated (in orders No. 6) to follow, making the four regiments. This regiment, and the 2d Mississippi, were then known to be at New Orleans, where they have been detained, I learn, by an unusual degree of sickness. When the latter comes up, it will go, under that order, to join the 1st Mississippi regiment with Major General Taylor.
But a fifth-the South Carolina regiment-has, by some mistake at New Orleans, sailed, I learn, direct from Mobile for Lobos. This I do not now regret, as information received yesterday makes it necessary that the expedition I am to conduct shall be augmented to the utmost within my power.
I reported in my despatch to you of the 24th ultimo, that my
confidential letters to Major Generals Taylor and Butler from Camargo, had been improperly opened and made public at Monterey before they had reached those generals; and I added, that it was believed there generally the substance of those letters had been, by Mexicans, promptly communicated to the enemy at San Luis de Potosi.
It is now believed, on the authority of a letter not official, that my despatches to the same generals, (of the 3d ultimo,) being sent off by the latter at Saltillo, to the former, then marching towards Victoria, by 2d Lieutenant Richey, 5th infantry, and ten mounted. men, were met by a party of the enemy, about the 11th ultimo, and the detachment all captured or killed. If Lieutenant Richey (reported as being slain) had not time to destroy the despatches about his person, (which is highly improbable,) General Santa Anna, at San Luis de Potosi, had them, no doubt, in four days. after their capture. It is, consequently, more than possible that, before this time, the greater part of the Mexican army lately assembled at San Luis de Potosi has reached Vera Cruz, or its vicinity. Major General Taylor's mind has no doubt, ere this, arrived at the same conclusion; and I shall write to suggest to him, at his own discretion, the advantage of manoeuvring offensively in the direction of San Luis de Potosi, after being partially reinforced with some of the new regiments of volunteers. The suggestion would be unnecessary but for the intimations he has received to stand on the defensive.
Another painful rumor, generally credited, reached me yesterday-the capture, at Encarnacion, some 60 miles in advance of Saltillo, of Majors Bolen and Gaines, and about 80 men of the Arkansas and Kentucky mounted volunteers. The private letter, from a highly intelligent officer at Saltillo, represents that not a shot was fired by either party.
I shall esteem myself happy if, contrary to present hopes, I shall soon be able to contradict both, or either of these painful rumors.
To elucidate my position, acts, and expectations, I enclose, herewith, copies of many papers. Letters from Major General Patterson, Commodore Connor, Brevet Brigadier General Worth, Colonel Harney, Commander Saunders, of the United States ship St. Mary's, and Captain Hetzell, senior of the quartermaster's department at this place, together with letters from me to each of those officers, except Commodore Connor, to whom I have not written directly
since December 27.
I also put under cover my letter to the commanding officer at Matamoras, respecting a seizure of certain goods, now in charge of the military authority there. Please see, in connexion, the letter to me from Brevet Brigadier General Worth. By whom the goods were originally seized, for whose benefit, or under what pretext, I have not had time to inquire; but the marshal of Texas, with a lawyer, has called upon me to revoke my order in the case, so as to enable him (the marshal) to get a colorable possession of the property. Believing that there was something mysterious, if not wrong, in the pursuit; that the goods had never been within
the limits of Texas, and that the whole case had been placed before the Secretary of the Treasury, I would not revoke the instructions I had given. The property, of course, will be held, so far as I am concerned, until the Secretary of the Treasury, or the government, shall decide the question.
It will be seen by the papers, including the proceedings of the general court martial in the case, that Colonel Harney, after his trial, and under my renewed order directing him to proceed to Monterey, &c., addressed a letter, in a proper tone of submission, to Brevet Brigadier General Worth; and that, thereupon, contrary to my original intention, I gave that general instructions to place the colonel in command of the regular dragoons (parts of the 1st and 2d regiments) of the expedition.
Colonel Curtis's Ohio regiment of volunteers, at Matamoras, heretofore mentioned in some of my letters, I have finally determined to leave under the orders of Major General Taylor, according to his wish, and that of Major General Butler; and because a sufficient number of the new volunteers are likely to be up before the arrival of the transports to take the troops now ready to embark with me.
I hope in a day or two, by arrivals here, to receive such information of supplies in arrear as to allow me to proceed with 350 men, on board the steamer Massachusetts, to Tampico, &c.
I have the honor to remain, sir, with high respect, your most obedient servant,
P. S. Another detachment of the New York volunteers, under the command of Captain Shaw, has just been reported to me as on board the ship Isabel, off this bar. The detachment took on board water for thirty-five days only, and has now a supply for nine days, with rations for about twenty, having consumed a large part of both water and provisions at anchor before sailing. Of course I should land the detachment at once, but that a part of the regiment is already at or near Lobos, equally, I suppose, short of water. Little or none can be obtained there. This is quite an embarrassment, considering our deficiency in lighters here, and at the mouth of the Rio Grande. All the transports from the Mississippi and Mobile, were ordered by me to take water for seventy days at least.
Commodore Connor to Major General Scott.
U. S. FRIGATE RARITAN, Anton Lizardo, January 11, 1847. SIR: Your esteemed favor of the 23d ultimo was received two days since, by the United States ship Albany, from Pensacola.
I had received, some days previously, communications from the Navy Department, apprizing me of your being about to take command of the army in Mexico, and of the joint operations contemplated against the enemy. In the prosecution of these measures, you may rely on the cordial co-operation of the naval forces under my command.
In consequence of some apprehensions being entertained of an attack from Mexican privateers, supposed to be fitting out in the Island of Cuba, I despatched the St. Mary's some days since to the Brassos, for the protection of the transports before that place. Commander Saunders is directed to perform any service you may require of him; and as I attach little credit to the report concerning the privateers, the St. Mary's might be withdrawn from the Brassos, without much risk to the transports, to carry your despatches to me, or to Tampico, should you wish to communicate with that place. I would employ steamboats for the purpose of communicating with you, but unfortunately, with the exception of the Princeton, (and she is in very bad condition, and scarcely fit to keep the sea,) I have no steamer that is capable of making the passage to the Brassos with certainty or safety at this season of the year.
My information from the shore, in regard to the movements of the enemy, has not of late been either so full or so exact as could be desired. From a source, however, which I believe may be relied upon, I learn that there are now about one thousand men in the castle; and in the town, eighteen hundred effective men, independent of the town militia, who do not amount to one thousand men. The provisions in the town or castle seldom or never exceed a supply for three or four days. In this matter all accounts concur. I am not aware of there being any regular force of any consequence between Vera Cruz and Mexico. There possiby may be a regiment or more at Xalapa, and also at La Puebla, and the city of Mexico; but this I think doubtful, as great exertions have been made by Santa Anna to assemble the whole regular force of the country at San Luis. The national guards, or such numbers as can. be armed, have in some instances garrisoned the towns, from which the troops of the line have been withdrawn. Such, it is believed, has been the case in most, if not all of those above mentioned. I am, therefore, of opinion, little opposition is to be expected from anything like a regular army in your descent on the coast, or from any other force than that within the city of Vera Cruz. Nor do I believe it in the power of the Mexican government to assemble a force in a reasonable time in the neighborhood of the city sufficient for its protection.
No neutral vessels are permitted to enter or depart from the har