[Inclosure Numbers 2.]
FORT MOULTRIE, December 18, 1860.
F. C. HUMPHREYS, Esq.,
Military Storekeeper, Charleston Arsenal:
DEAR SIR: I have received your note of this date, begging me to return to the arsenal the forty musket which I obtained yesterday (in accordance with an order from the Ordnance Department, issued some time since), because of a threatened violent demonstration on the part of some persons of Charleston. you state that Colonel Huger, of the Ordnance (as General Schnierle asserts to you), assured the governor that no arms should be removed form the arsenal, and that as the above assurance of Colonel Huger was made subsequent to the receipt of the order for the issue of these muskets to me, you have pledge you word that they shall be returned to the arsenal to-morrow. If Colonel Huger made this pledge to the governor of this State, I presume he must have acted by the authority of the Government; but of this I have no direct knowledge. All I know is that an order was given to issue forty muskets to me, that I actually required them to protect the property of the Government against a mob, and that I have them in my possession. To give them back now, without proper authority, would subject me to blame if any loss should occur which might be prevented by keeping them. I am willing to refer the matter to Washington. I am sorry to be obliged to disappoint you and will call to assure you so to-morrow at 12 o'clock, a which time I shall be happy to meet General Schnierle, if he is disposed to see me.
Very truly, yours,
J. G. FOSTER,
Captain of Engineers.
FORT MOULTRIE, S. C., December 19, 1860.
Colonel R. E. DE RUSSY,
Commanding Corps of Engineers, U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.:
COLONEL: I have the honor to inform you that I had an interview to-day with General Schnierle (general of division in this vicinity) and several other prominent citizens of Charleston, in relation to the little excitement attending the issue of forty muskets to me at he arsenal on the 17th instant.
The main facts connected with this were communicated in my letter of yesterday.
The interview to-day was satisfactory to me, as I saw that the action of General Schnierle had arise from his great desire to allay the temporary excitement among some of citizens. Although I declined to return the muskets until I was directed by the Government so to do, yet I proposed at once to refer the matter to Washington, and accordingly telegraphed to Captain Maynadier, Ordnance Corps, to inquire whether the muskets should be return to the arsenal or not. Up to this time I have received no answer. The reasons for my doing so are there: General Schnierle asserted that Colonel Huger had assured the governor of this State that no arms should be removed from the arsenal, and Captain Humphreys, military storekeeper, felt himself placed in a peculiar position from having acted contrary to the colonel's assurance, while on the other hand neither Captain Humphreys or myself had been income by Colonel Huger that he had made such assurance; nighter had we any positive written testimony of the fact. To solve the question,
7 R R