War of the Rebellion: Serial 042 Page 0088 W. FLA.,S. ALA.,S. MISS.,LA.,TEX.,N. MEX. Chapter XXXVIII.

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COMMANDANT'S OFFICE,

Shreveport, La., June 28, 1863.

Lieutenant General E. KIRBY SMITH,

Commanding Trans-Mississippi Department:

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of this date.

Agreeably to your request, I will direct Lieutenant-Commander [C. M.] Fauntleroy to proceed to Houston, Tex., and confer with Major-General Magruder in relation to the vessel at the Rio Grande, which it is proposed to purchase and turn over to the Confederate States Navy Department. If the vessel be received, I will direct Lieutenant-Commander Fauntleroy to take command of the vessel; otherwise, to return to his present command.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

THOMAS W. BENT,

Commanding, C. S. Navy, in Charge Navy Dept. Western Louisiana.

HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT,

Shreveport, La., June 29, 1863.

General S. COOPER,

Adjutant and Inspector General, Richmond, Va.:

I am fully informed that an English vessel, with stores, under contract from the War Department, has arrived at Matamoras. This vessel, carrying six Whitworth guns, can be purchased. Will authority be given Captain Bent, commanding officer of the navy here, to order the necessary detail of officers and men, and to commission the vessel as a cruiser?

E. KIRBY SMITH,

Lieutenant-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT,

Shreveport, La., June 29, 1863.

General S. COOPER, Adjutant-General:

GENERAL: I have the honor to inclose a copy of a correspondence with Major-General Magruder upon the subject of the impressment of cotton, and also concerning the purchase of a vessel of war arrived in the Rio Grande.* I trust the course I have taken in these matters will meet with the approval of the War Department.

Captain Fauntleroy, C. S. Navy, has been directed to consult with General Magruder, and then to inspect the vessel thoroughly, with a view to her fitness for war purposes and preliminary to the purchase. Should he report favorably, and the purchase be consummated, she will sail from the Rio Grande under command of Captain Fauntleroy. It is desirable that the crew of the Missouri be transferred to her, and that she be commissioned as a cruiser before sailing, and I request that the necessary authority be given by the Navy Department. If this is acted on without delay, so as to enable her to sail at once as a cruiser, advantageous results may follow.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. KIRBY SMITH,

Lieutenant-General.

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*Such of the inclosures as were duplicates of those transmitted June 23 are here omitted.

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