War of the Rebellion: Serial 129 Page 0049 CONFEDERATE AUTHORITIES.

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seeking to avoid duty (and these will dodge you by leaving the country and other ways) there large numbers who were as brave and patriotic as any who went into service.

Let me mention one class of cases, by no means unusual, where there were several members of a family, all willing to go, but agreed among themselves that one should remain to attend to the business of all. Those who went have fallen in battle or linger in hospitals. Another class, whose large business demanded their attention at home, and who have contributed largely, liberally, and profusely to the support of the Army and soldiers' families by selling produce at the lowest prices, an so on, and so on. I tell you that the wholesale denunciation of men who employed substitutes is wrong and unjust. I fully agree that the law ought to be repealed, and these men ought now to be brought into the service, but I do insist, not only on their own accounts, but for the good of the service, they ought not to be force into the ranks of the old organizations. In the case of the Georgia State Guard, all the men promptly responded to the call of the Governor, and have made as good and uncomplaining soldiers as any in the field. I seriously fear the consequences of this policy in Georgia. The very men who were eager and enthusiastic to form themselves into new companies for the war now arranging to test the question before the courts, and will resort to every method to defeat what they regard as harsh and unjust rule upon them.

They dread the jeers and sneers which they must encounter from the Army more than they do the bullets of the Yankees, and their pride revolts as the idea of being forced into the ranks under men their inferiors in every respect, save in the length of service and experience in the field.

Whether you respect this feeling or not, the question cannot be avoided, of the effect upon the strength and efficiency of the Army. You not only want soldiers, but you want them cheerful, content, and satisfied. If may even nbut still batter now than not at all.

Your friend,

HOWELL COBB.

[Indorsement.]

FEBRUARY 1, 1864.

Respectfully submitted to the President for his consideration.

I do not concur in General Cobb's views, but respect for his judgment induces me to submit his letter.

J. A. SEDDON,

Secretary of War.

RICHMOND, January 27, 1864.

THE SENATE:

I submit to the Senate herewith the nomination of A. R. Lawton, of Georgia, to be Quartermaster-General, with the rank of brigadier-general, to take rank from the 13th day of April, 1861, and deem it proper to communicate the reasons which induce this course.

On the passage of the act of the 20th of March last, entitled "An act to amend an act for the establishment and organization of the general staff for the Army of the Confederate States of America," inquiry was made to aid in the selection of the most competent person then made

4 R R-SERIES IV, VOL III