Parties are at work upon the bridge at Bayou Ramos; the track is nearly cleared, and, from the scattered parts of the demolished locomotives, a few skillful mechanics have made a new one, which is now running between here and Bayou Ramos.
I have the honor to be, sir, your obedient servant,
FRANK H. PECK,
Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding U. S. Forces at Brashear City, La.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF,
New Orleans, August 4, 1863.
Respectfully referred to Brigadier-General Weitzel for his information; to be returned.
The naval forces ought to prevent any of the depredations by the enemy mentioned in this report. Railroad communication will be open with Brushear in the course of next week, and them better arrangements can be made by me.
HDQRS. UNITED STATES FORCES,
Fort Hudson, La., July 30, 1863.
The commanding general of this post has been informed of the abuse of colored soldiers, and disregard of their authority as sentinels, on the part of some of the other troops of this command, and on the part of some persons not in the military service. He takes this opportunity to correct certain erroneous impression, and to announce to all concerned that this course of conduct must cease at once and entirely.
The Government having decided upon the employment of colored troops, it is the imperative duty of all officers and soldiers to acquiesce full and promptly in this decision, for which their are in no wise responsible. The colored soldier employed as such is entitled to respect and consideration, and to the protection and support of his military superiors, particularly when performing any duty which has been imposed upon him.
While engaged in carrying out the orders he has received, he is but the agent or instrument of his commanding officer. Any opposition to him or abuse of him while so engaged is not disobedience of his orders nor contempt of his authority, but is nothing less than disobedience of the orders and contempt of the authority of the commanding general, neither of which will be tolerated under any circumstances in this command. Abuse of the colored soldiers, or opposition to him in the discharge of his duty in this command, will be punished with unrelating severity, not only for the protection of the colored soldier, who is justly entitled to it, and shall have it, but because such conduct is grossly insubordinate to lawful authority.
All discussions of the subject of employing colored soldiers, all remarks disparaging them, and any course of conduct tending to create ill-feeling between the colored troops and other troops of this command, are most strictly prohibited.
All soldiers of this command are exhorted to the prompt, cheerful, soldierlike performance of military duties. The exhibition of high soldierly qualities by them in the camp, on the march, and on the battle-