War of the Rebellion: Serial 026 Page 0422 NORTH CAROLINA AND S. E. VIRGINIA. Chapter XXX.

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explain any part of the printed instructions not distinct to me." I believe I have a perfectly distinct understanding of them. The questions I proposed to you were made for the purpose of ascertaining how you understood them, with a sincere desire to obviate all misunderstanding between us in carrying them out, and if we disagreed to ask the decision of the proper authority.

The grounds I have taken with the Government are briefly these:

1st. That Norfolk is not a blockaded port; that it lacks the fundamental condition of a blockade - hostile possession.

2nd. That if it were a blockaded port the traffic allowed under the regulations concerning coastwise intercourse is in violation of the laws of blockade recognized by civilized States. No nation can shut out neutrals from intercourse with a blockaded port and allow intercourse with it to its own people.

3rd. That Norfolk not being a hostile possession, but held as a military occupation, we are free to allow so much traffic as is necessary for military purposes and to prevent those whom we have subjected to our power from suffering by hunger or cold - a duty dictated by the commonest principles of humanity, and that it is on those conditions only that the traffic allowed under the regulations can be justified.

I do not state these views with the desire or expectation of influencing your own, but to advise you frankly of the grounds I have taken I deem this frankness due to the relations between us.

I have instructed the provost-marshal at Norfolk to issue no permits for vessels with return cargoes or to vessels desirous of exporting domestic or other products until the decision of the Government is known.

UNITED STATES FLAG-SHIP MINNESOTA,

Off Newport News, October 10, 1862.

General JOHN A. DIX, U. S. A.,

Commanding Seventh Army Corps, Fortress Monroe, Va.:

GENERAL: The steamer John A. Warner passed up this morning under a flag of truce and in charge of an army officer, who was recognized by the boarding officer from this ship. I will feel obliged to you if the officers in charge of steamers on this duty would exhibit written authority to me from your headquarters, as they generally do.

Very respectfully, yours,

S. P. LEE,

Actg. Rear-Admiral, Commanding N. Atlantic Blockading Squadron.

UNITED STATES FLAG-SHIP MINNESOTA,

Off Newport News, October 10, 1862.

Major General JOHN A. DIX, U. S. A.,

Commanding Seventh Army Corps, Fort Monroe, Va.:

GENERAL: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt to-night of your communication of the 9th instant.

The words "no traffic," to which you refer, related to such unauthorized traffic as in the case in hand - that of the schooner Marblehead - but did not revoke my previous instructions to respect the permits of the Treasury, War, and Navy Departments. I have seen but one duly authorized permit, viz, that given by the War Department, at the in