RICHMOND, September 23, 1864.
Major J. B. FERGUSON,
Quartermaster, Manchester, England:
SIR: I have just written to Mr. Thomas Sharp fully upon the subject of machinery for the manufacture of blankets. He has been directed to confer with you, and you will please do all you can to arrange for its purchase. You must exercise your discretion in connection with making available the process of extracting wool from rags. It is has proved a success in England it will be of great practical value here. It may even be of service in the manufacture of cloth.
I inclose for your information and action, should circumstances permit, requisitions for articles needed by the field transportation branch of this department and by the Signal Corps, for the wants of which I am expected to provide. As time goes on and you see that the estimate referred to in my last communication is in a fair way to be responded, to you will endeavor to provide the article called for, and in the event of making shipments you will be particular to advise this office respecting the same, and in a manner that will enable it to identify the supplies, and so control their destination from Wilmington.
In referring as I did in my previous communication to the advantage of purchasing all gray cloth instead of part blue, I included material for soldiers as well as officers.
The necessities of officers are so great that there is no necessity to purchase the first quality of cloth. The question has become one rather of quantity, due regard being had to wearing properties. The same is to some extent true of stationery. if any material economy can be effected and so the quantity of purchase increased by buying a plan but serviceable article, it had better be done. A further saving as to stationary may be effected by purchasing letter paper, full note size.
A few thousand yards of officers' cloth-say 5,000-and a limited quantity of stationary, each of superior quality, might be sent in for special purposes. Some water-proof material will be acceptable, and there is no article more serviceable to the Army for fall and winter wear than the flannel or worsted shirts, or the material for their manufacture.
The water-proof material must be postponed to an abundant supply of woolen goods, as also must the inclosed requisition. *
A. R. LAWTON,
STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA, EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT,
Raleigh, September 23, 1864.
His Excellency Governor M. L. BONHAM,
Columbia, S. C.:
DEAR SIR: The Legislature of the various States will soon be in session. It will become them to take such steps in aid of the common cause as the perilous and straightened condition of the country demands. The great evil of desertion must be broken up, if possible; provision must be made to feed the poor, and the feeble and desponding must be encouraged and inspired with hope; and, beyond all
* Not found.