I don't know if you have given further thought to the nature of Cochran's militia company (July 30, 1864 - Feb. 24, 1865), but I've recently come across some information in the Official Records of the Civil War that make me believe it might have reported to and taken orders from Col. J.B. Rogers, commander of the 2nd Regiment State Militia Cavalry in Cape Girardeau. Below are excepts from some letters I found written by Rogers in which he seems to be directing the company and even raising the idea of disbanding it. Do you think this idea make sense? If it does, would Cochran's unit have been a "PEM" or "PEMM" company commanded by a "MSM" regiment? I'd be grateful for your point of view. Also thanks very much for recently posting Albert Martin's narrative in its entirety.
Colonel Rogers's letters don't mention the unit he was with at the time, but it seems to be aforementioned 2nd Regiment State Militia Cavalry, judging from a records I found for him in the state adjutant general's database.
(From Official Records: Series 1, Vol. 4, Part 4 (Price’s Expedition) Pages 865-867)
Cape Girardeau, Mo., December 15, 1864.
Brigadier General THOMAS EWING,
Commanding Saint Louis District:
GENERAL: I take the liberty of writing you fully upon affairs as I find them in my sub-district. I have outposts at Dallas, Bloomfield, Commerce, Charleston, New Madrid, and Caruthersville, which is about thirty miles below New Madrid on the river, and although I should not have advised placing an outpost there since I cannot see what good it will accomplish, still, as we have now built a stockade, thus rendering it perfectly secure, and the inhabitants have been led, to commit themselves so as to render their lives and property unsafe, I think I would maintain it. ...
I have at Dallas one company of Volunteer Missouri Militia, and Dallas is an outpost; there is no earthly use in holding if Bloomfield and Patterson are held. The Union men there are mostly in the army, and no force could come up the country without it being known at Bloomfield or Patterson. Hence, I would recommend that the outposts of Dallas be abandoned and the troops there be sent to Bloomfield-or what would be perhaps better, be brought here, where they could be the more easily foraged....
Lieutenant-Colonel Hiller thinks that there are Union men at Dallas, but thinks the outposts unnecessary, but suggests that a small force of mounted men be left there to prevent smuggling from above, say one officer and twenty men. I think his suggestion a good one; this force would act as a picket and could move readily if threatened.
I am, general, very respectfully,
J. B. ROGERS
(From Page 906 of the same OR citation)
CAPE GIRARDEAU, December 21, 1864.
I sent fifty men under command of Major Robbins, and at Bloomfield will be joined by fifty more, and I have detailed fifty from Dallas to join him at Poplar Bluff. He will proceed to ---, and else he may have a chance to strike Reves, Bowles, or any of the thieving crew. He has fifteen days' rations, with orders to seize what he may want, and to stay as long as he may think he can do any good. Snow fell last night, and all were eager to get after Reves, and I let them go.
J. B. ROGERS,