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Re: Pea Ridge
In Response To: Re: Pea Ridge ()

Do you have the actual wording of Hindmanís telegraph order?

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Hindman's Copybook of Telegraphs, May 31st to October 9th, 1862, Army of the Southwest, Dept. of the Trans Mississippi. Peter W. Alexander papers, Columbia University Library, New York.

Little Rock, June 1st, 1862

Captain Tom McSwine
Pine Bluff

You will proceed immediately to this place with your company. Give the same order to Captains {Fountain P.} Yell, {Samuel} Gibson, and Bragg.

T. C. Hindman Maj-Genl Comdg.

Little Rock, June 3rd, 1862

F. P. Yell
Pine Bluff

I ordered the companies at or near Pine Bluff to this place. When they come I will get facts and act.

T. C. Hindman Maj-Genl Comdg.

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I would like to know what Captain Yell had reported to General Hindman that Gen. Hindman needed to get the facts and act upon? It sort of sounded serious.

While Morgan's Battalion was officially organized at Little Rock from these companies, In the hindsight of history there seems in fact to be a defacto battalion of these 4 companies already existing at Pine Bluff/Sulphur Springs prior to June 1st, somewhat under the command of captain Tom McSwine, since these orders were sent through him to the other company commanders. It is clear in this hindsight that the order to McSwine of June 3rd was to in fact bring these companies to Little Rock for an "Official" organization as a Battalion under Asa Morgan's command.

It may have been that Captain Yell's report to Hindman that Hindman needed to "get the facts" may have in fact been a dispute between McSwine and Yell over this order and McSwine's authority. But I have no proof of that without other communications.

The gap in time of McSwine recieving the order on the 1st and Yell still being in Pine Bluff on the 3rd could be the result of not being able to transport all of the men at one time on steamboats. The fact that Hindman repeated/confirmed the order to Yell that he (Hindman) had ordered all the companies to Little Rock is another reason I believe that there may have been a dispute between McSwine and Yell over these orders. And why I believe that Yell was the last company to leave for Little Rock. And wasn't about to before recieving a "personal invitation" to come.

Just my $.02 worth.

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