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.