[ASP, Mil. Aff., v.6, p. 765]
Fort Mitchell, Alabama, December 4, 1834.
I have the honor to enclose herewith an article of agreement and a bond, to furnish the emigrating Creek Indians with rations, &c., from this place to Memphis, Tennessee.
The lowest bid was J. C. Troitley; he was not a responsible man, and could not give any security. Henry was the next, but finding the prospect so dull, and believing the number would be small and corn so high, he declined giving bonds, unless I would insure him a certain number would emigrate this fall, which I could not comply with. Alexander Roberson was the next lowest, and consented to take the contract, but he thought the number would be larger than it will be. Corn cannot be purchased on the road between this and Montgomery short of one dollar, and more frequently one dollar and twenty-five cents per bushel; the new settlers are moving in the nation so rapidly that the market for corn and beef is very high. I shall endeavor to get along as economical as possible, but it is so late in the fall, the frost has destroyed the grass for horses, and my issues to Indian horses must necessarily be much greater than it would have been six weeks ago. There is no other way now than to tie them up at night, and give each Indian a gallon of corn for his horse; but every economical step on my part shall be used. I have apprised William Armstrong of the probable number that will emigrate this fall.
We shall have in all six or seven hundred, and more cannot be had this fall; the weather is getting so cold they are unwilling to attempt the journey. One month ago many more could have been started, but the time has passed for the present season. So soon as we get started I will inform you.
With respect, I have the honor to be your obedient servant,
JOHN PAGE, Captain and Disbursing Agent.
Brig Gen. George Gibson, Commissary General of Subsistence, Washington.