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[593] a Rebel flag of truce, asking permission to bury their dead; which, he said, must be referred to Gen. Sigel, from whom he, the next hour, forwarded the permission required.1 White drew in a part of his pickets, stationed them between the village and the bloody field of yesterday's conflict, and the Rebels quietly buried their dead. He did not venture to remain through the night, but fell back upon Sigel, who reached Springfield by a forced march of thirty miles, on the evening of the 27th. Asboth came up with another division on the 30th; and Lane, with the Kansas brigade, was not long behind him. But Hunter, McKinstry, and Pope, with their respective divisions, were still struggling with the badness of the roads from thirty to forty miles back. Pope arrived November 1st, having marched seventy miles in two days; and McKinstry came in just behind him.

On the morning of Nov. 2d, a messenger brought to Springfield an order from Gen. Scott2 removing Fremont from his command, and directing him to turn it over to Gen. Hunter, who had not yet arrived. This was sad news to the great bulk of the army, which had been collected and equipped with such effort; which had driven the Rebels almost out of Missouri without loss; and which confidently expected to meet and beat them within the State, and to chase the fragments of their army through Little Rock, and, ultimately, to New Orleans. Hunter not having yet arrived, and the enemy being reported in force at Wilson's Creek, it was determined in council to march out and give him battle next morning; but Hunter came up that night, and the command was turned over to him by Fremont.

It does not seem that their advices of the Rebels' proximity were well-founded. Pollard asserts that they were then at Pineville, some fifty miles from Springfield; but adds that Gen. Price had made preparations to receive Fremont, determined not to abandon Missouri without a battle. It must therefore be regarded as a national misfortune that the order superseding Gen. Fremont arrived at this time; for it is not possible that his army-superior in numbers and in equipment to the Rebels, and inspired by enthusiastic devotion to its chief-could have been beaten.

Gen. Fremont departed for St. Louis early next morning, accompanied by his Body-Guard as a special escort. That Guard, it is sad to say, though enlisted for three years, and composed of the very best material, were mustered out of service, by order of Gen. McClellan, soon afterward.

That Gen. Fremont-placed in so important a command, and frantically entreated for reenforcements from so many sides at once-committed some errors of judgment, is very probable. It may be he should have divined earlier than he did that Price would not strike at Jefferson City or Booneville, which he seemed to threaten, but would take the safer course of swooping down on Lexington, so much further west. It may be that he should have foreseen that the ferry-boats at Lexington, instead of being kept out of the reach of the Rebels, would be allowed to fall into their hands; and that neither Davis,

1 Sigel was then forty miles distant.

2 Scott was himself retired the day before.

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