ALS, McClernand Papers, IHi. O. R., I, iii, 144-45. Brig. Gen. John A. McClernand of Ill. had just arrived at Cairo with 2,000 new troops. He was also serving his sixth term as U. S. Representative. Born in Ky. in 1812, he lived in Shawneetown, Ill., from 1813 to 1851, where he was a lawyer, newspaper editor, and Democratic politician. He began a second political career after moving to Springfield in 1856. Although his previous military service was limited to three months as a private in the Black Hawk War of 1832, he resigned his seat in Congress on Oct. 28, 1861, to retain his commission as brig. gen. of vols. Victor Hicken, "From Vandalia to Vicksburg: The Political and Military Career of John A. McClernand" (unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Illinois, 1955). It was intended that McClernand would move his troops to Cairo without superseding the previous commander, Col. Richard J. Oglesby, 8th Ill. Maj. Joseph H. Eaton to McClernand, Sept. 2, 1861. Copy, DNA, RG 393, Western Dept., Letters Sent (Press). O. R., I, iii, 143.
Camp Girardeau Mo|
Sept 1st 1861|
The undersigned being instructed from the western Department of the Army to take command of all the troops in South East Missouri, the command of this Post will be relinquished in your favor.
You will therefore take command at once making your reports to Genl Fremont at St Louis from my departure untill otherwise instucted—
It has been enjined upon me to see that the work of fortifying be pushed vigorously forward. You will see therfore that the of