of the business. Neither would it comport with justice or sound policy.
It is a little remarkable to me that the entire importing operations of this State, which have been so successful and so beneficial to the cause, seems to have met with little else than downright opposition rather than encouragement from the Confederate Government. In its very inception Mr. Mason, our commissioner in England, laid the strong hand on my agents, and positively forbade them putting a bond on the market for five months after they landed in England. Then came vexatious and irritating quarantine delays at Wilmington (enforced by the military, not the civil authorities), though our foreign depot was, at great cost and inconvenience, made at Bermuda instead of Nassau to avoid this. Then seizures of my coal at Wilmington occurred, and the denial of facilities to get it from the mines, &c. It was not until after my decided remonstrance to you in November that I met with anything else than an evident hostility in the operations of my steamers. And now, if the regulations in regard to private-runners are enforced, I think highly probable that this line will be stopped entirely, as the profits will scarcely justify the risks. A great deal of this, I am aware, is attributable to the want of discretion on the part of subordinate officers, as well as the want of foresight displayed in the opposition of every industrial interest of the country by army officers, yet I have had it to contend with.
After this statement I leave it with you to say whether the regulations referred to shall be enforced. If they are, I shall certainly countermand the sailing of the two other steamers now expected, and would suggest for the benefit of the Department that it would be much better to purchase than to seize an interest in the property of strangers who are engaged in bringing in indispensable supplies through a most vigorous and dangerous blockade.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Z. B. VANCE.
[JANUARY 7, 1864. -For Polk to Watts, in relation to the raising of State troops to support the Confederate forces in the defense of Alabama, see Series I, VOL. XXXII, Part II, p. 529.]
[JANUARY 8, 1864. -For Davis to Vance, in relation to peace negotiations with the enemy, see Series I, Vol LI, Part II, p. 808.]
ADJT. AND INST. GENERAL'S OFFICE, Numbers 3. Richmond, January 9, 1864.
I. The following acts of Congress and regulation are published for the information of all person concerned therein:
AN ACT to prevent the enlistment or enrollment of substitutes in the military service of the Confederate States.
The Congress of Confederate States of America do enact, That no person liable to military service shall hereafter be permitted or allowed to furnish a substitute for such service, not shall substitute be received, enlisted on enrolled in the military service of the Confederate States.
Approved December 28, 1863.