support, I am directed to say that you will make such orders and regulations as you may deem necessary to remedy the evil.
In regard to the support of the suffering families thrown upon your hands, the Secretary of War directs that you retain in your hands, or assume control over, all such plantations, houses, funds, and sources of revenue as you may deem most suitable for that purpose.
In regard to the complaints against the conduct of Mr. Jones, I am directed to say that you are authorized to assume control over any person, whatever be his official position in your department, whose course of conduct you deem prejudicial to the public service.
The employees of the civil departments of the Government should be permitted to exercise their official functions and to perform the duties assigned to them so long as they conform to the orders and regulations issued by you; but when they do not conform, you have full authority to remove them from your command.
In other words, general, your military department is composed of States in rebellion, whose inhabitants are in arms against the Government - it is a theater of actual war - and all civil authorities of whatever character in that department must act in subordination to the general commanding. You will, therefore, enforce the laws of war against all classes of persons and all kinds of property within your command. Of course, all property used and all moneys expended under your orders must be expended and accounted for in accordance with law and regulations.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. W. HALLECK,
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF, October 26, 1863.
(On board steamer McClellan, Mississippi River-5 p. m.)
Honorable E. M. STANTON,
Secretary of War, Washington, D. C.:
SIR: The number of black troops in this department is steadily increasing. I hope within a month or six weeks to add from 5,000 to 10,000 to their number. We are greatly in need of competent officers. If you can send me from 100 to 300 (chiefly company officers), I think I can give them employment. If the Ordnance Department be in such condition as to increase the number of muskets in this department, they will be of immediate service.
To-day (26th) at 12 m. we sailed for the Rio Grande. If a landing is effected, as I hope, at the Brazxos Santiago, occupying the line of the river, we shall immediately effect and lodgment at Matagord, and seize an interior position. This will inevitably give us a large accession to our negro troops. Officers and arms will be immediately indispensable. I hope you will give favorable consideration to both these suggestions.
I have the honor to be, with much respect, your obedient servant,
N. P. BANKS,
HDQRS. THIRTEENTH ARMY CORPS, Numbers 49.
Steamer McClellan, New Orleans, October 26, 1863.
I. The undersigned assumes command of the Thirteenth Army Corps, and will, at the same time, for the present retain the personal command of the [Second] division.