remarkably fine, and nothing is needed so much as proper food to complete its efficiency.
I inclose a rough draught of orders or regulations intended for promoting the efficiency of our department in the field, and request that you may give this your consideration. After mature reflection, I am convinced that many evils now existing will be corrected by its adoption. This paper has been submitted to General Lee,m and meets with his unqualified approval. Should you deem it unnecessary to incorporate it in the medical regulations, the general is still desirous of having its requirements adopted for the guidance of this army, and has instructed me to furnish him with the number and names of medical officers who are to constitute the members of the staff corps of the medical department of the Army of Northern Virginia. When this is accomplished, and additional number of about forty medical officers will be required, and I would respectfully request that the same number, if available, be ordered to report to me with as little delay as practicable.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Surgeon, and Medical Director Army of Northern Virginia.
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE NORTHERN VIRGINIA, January 10, 18623.
Hon. JAMES A. SEDDON,
Secretary of War, Richmond, Va.:
SIR: I have the honor to represent to you the absolute necessity that exists, in my opinion, to increase our armies, if we desire to oppose effectual resistance to the vast numbers that the enemy is now precipitating upon us. It has occurred to me that the people are not fully aware of their danger, nor of the importance of making every exertion to put fresh troops in the field at once; and that if the facts were presented by those whose position best enables then to know the urgency of the case, they and the State authorities would be stimulated to make greater efforts. I trust, therefore, that it may not be deemed improper by the Department to communicate these facts to the Governors of the several States, that they may give efficient aid to the enrolling officers within their limits, and arouse the people to a since of the vital importance of the subject.
The success with which our efforts have been crowned, under the blessing of God, should not betray our people into the dangerous delusion that the armies now in the field are sufficient to bring this war to a successful and speedy termination. While the spirit of our soldiers is unabated, their ranks have been greatly thinned by the casualties of battle and the diseases of the camp. Losses in battle are rendered much heavier by reason of our being compelled to encounter the enemy with inferior numbers; so that every man who remains out of service increases the dangers to which brave men, who have so well borne the burden of the war, are exposed.
The great increase of the enemy's forces will augment the disparity of numbers to such a degree that victory, if attained, can only be achieved by a terrible expenditure of the most precious blood of the country. This blood will be upon the heads of the thousands of able-bodied men who remain at home in safety and ease, while their noble fortitude the hardships and privations of the march and camp. Justice to