CUMBERLAND, MD., June 11, 1861.
SIR: Your dispatches, by hand of Jerome Closson, were delivered to me by him this morning, shortly after my arrival. At this time I have only to say that your instructions shall be carried out to the best of my ability. It gives me pleasure to add that my command has been most kindly and hospitably received by the citizens of Cumberland, who appear from their demonstrations to be most loyal and Union. I may also say that I reached this point by way of Grafton, and along my route through Virginia was met with a feeling of good-will amounting to enthusiasm. Although my march was considerably in advance of General McClellan’s troops, and through what is called a disaffected region, there was not a single act of hostility to disturb my progress or interrupt communication with General Morris’ command at Grafton.
By every available opportunity I will forward you reports of the positions and strength of my detachments and the condition of my regiment. At this time I have over eight hundred effective men, keen for the contest, uniformed and very perfectly equipped for the field. If there is impropriety in the remark, general, I hope you will excuse it, but I cannot help concluding with an earnest expression of the hope that you will not forget me when you advance upon Harper’s Ferry and Richmond, if such be your aim. Through special favor of General Scott (God bless him) we are in the East and under your command, probably the only stranger regiment in a division of gallant soldiers. I hail from a State which, since Buena Vista, has been under a cloud of slander. Do not, I beg you, withhold from us the only chance we may ever have to show the people of the East that Indiana has as much courage as loyalty, and can and will fight to the last man to crush out treason and vindicate her lost honor. General, I will go to the duty you have assigned me, confidently relying upon your generosity and judgment.
I have the honor to be, most respectfully, your servant,
Colonel Eleventh Indiana Regiment.
The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies. Series I, Vol. II. With additions and corrections. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1902.