troops showed marks of neglect in many important points. This army is in a high of efficiency, well clad and armed, and marked with every evidence of good discipline, high courage, and capacity for endurance. There is vast improvement in this army since I inspected it last June at Tupelo; and while great credit is due to the high soldierly qualities of the eminent officers by whom he is surrounded, much is also due to the peculiar talents for organization of the commander, General Bragg, and to his laborious attention to the details of his command. This is not an opinion, but the testimony of all with whom I came in contact. The army lacks no physical element of success.
Attention is called to the two tri-monthly reports of March 10 and 20, furnished me by the assistant adjutant-general, marked B.* That of March 20 shows an aggregate of 97,090 men, and an effective total of 49,447 men, of which 15,616 are cavalry. The great accession to the numbers of the army is attributed by Generals Johnston and Bragg to the energy and vigorous system of Brigadier-General Pillow and the conscript bureau conducted by him. The fear was expressed that, if his operations were discontinued, the strength of the army would begin to decline. General Bragg estimated the recruits sent forward by him [Pillow] at 10,000 and by the enrolling officers at 19 men. He stated that 1,200 men had been obtained in Chattanooga alone. He made some caustic remarks on the camps of instructions, and asked for a vigorous inspection of them.
In the office of Colonel Brent, assistant adjutant-general, I found a large number of reports of the battles of Murfreesborough, furnished by brigadier-generals and their subordinates. On inquiry, Colonel Brent did not seem aware that it was proper and necessary, to complete the record, that these should be sent to their final depository-the Adjutant General's Office, at Richmond. I called General Bragg's attention to this fact, and requested Colonel Ewell to see that they were forwarded.
The camps were clean and well laid, and the tents made comfortable with much chimneys. The camps will be shifted at the approach of warm weather. There is little sickness; what does exist is chiefly ague and diarrhea.
Particular attention is called to the report of Colonel Oladowski, chief of ordnance, marked Exhibit C. Its information is valuable. It shows, 41,673 small-arms in the hands of the army, and 4,206 in depot, from which deduct 600 recently issued. Forty rounds of ammunition are kept in cartridge-boxes, and 60 in wagons with the brigades. There are 125 field pieces of all kinds. Their loss is generally ascribed to the shortness of the scabbards. Complaint was made of certain cartridges for Enfield rifles as being too large, and fouling the guns. Colonel Oladowski says these are being rapidly replaced by others. He says they were made at Atlanta, but Major Wright, of the Atlanta Arsenal, told me that they were made at Selma. He showed me the report of a board experimenting with them, which pronounced the Atlanta cartridge not too large, not well greased. This he attributes to the smooth surface of the ball permitting the absorption of the grease by the paper. Captain Finnie, at the Augusta Arsenal, confirmed this statement, and recommended the grooved ball. Deficiency of bees-wax in the lubricator is also a great disadvantage.
The transportation of the army is in tolerable condition, when the
*See return of March 10, p. 680; return of March 20, p. 718.