War of the Rebellion: Serial 108 Page 0679 Chapter LXIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.- CONFEDERATE.

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that has to be supplied from the adjoining country. From tis point the wagons are now hauling 70 miles, 140 going and returning, from beyond the Central Railroad. All the animals have been sent back except those actually necessary. Colonel Corley informs me that the corn brgouth by railroad has been delivered to Major PAGE, General Pendleton's quatermaster, under the supposition that the distributed it according to the wants of the artillery. I have directed him to inquire if that was done. Please let me know the number of horses belonging to the artillery of your corps, where you can best station them, and what arrangments you can for their support. If requisitions be made on the corps quatermaster for salt, he may obtain it in small quantities from the corps commissary, if any can be had. The artillery officers must attend closely to their horses, seeing that they have every possible attention and comfort, and if nothing better can be done, turned our duting the day, that they may browse on the stubble, twigs, &c. Life at least can be preserved with other forage that can be procured.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. E. LEE,

[25.] General.

ENGINEER BUREAU,

Richmond, Va., February 9, 1863.

Honorable JAMES A. SEDDON,

Secretary of War:

SIR: At your request I make the following communication on the subject of salve labor impressed in the State of Virginia to work on the fortifications. The probabilities are decided, unless the succeeding two months should prove excessively, that this bureau will not be called upon to issue hereafter any very onerous requisitions for labor. The great importance of not interfering more than is absolutely necessary with farming operations, in view of the vital necessity of liberal commissary supplies, is perfectly evident and fully appreciated by this bureau. But it is equally clear that the hitherto heavy calls for labor were absolutely required to place the defenses of Richmond in a satisfactory state by the opening of the spring campaing, a mahe greatest importance by General R. E. Lee. It is proposed in future to make such calls as light as possible, and so distributed as to fall on no section with undue severity, but rather in such a way as to gandually equalize the service rendered by the various counties of the State. Suggestion in regard to procuring labor from other osurces have been made, and are under consideration. Assurances need scarcely be given that this bureau will gladly avail itslef of every resource to procure labor in such a manner as will least burdensome to the community.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. F. GILMER,

[25.] Colonel of Engineers and Chief of Bureau.

WAR DEPARTMENT, C. S. A.,

Richmond, February 9, 1863.

General R. E. LEE,

General, Commanding, &c.:

SIR: The Commissary-General has made arrangements to proceed with the command of about fifty wagons to remove the wheat from the