War of the Rebellion: Serial 042 Page 0419 Chapter XXXVIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-CONFEDERATE.

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[Indorsement Numbers 2.]

DECEMBER 20, 1863.

QUARTERMASTER-GENERAL:

The contract with Barriere & Bros. has been annulled, or has long since expired, has it not?

J. A. SEDDON.

[Indorsement Numbers 3.]

QUARTERMASTER-GENERAL'S OFFICE,

Richmond, December 22, 1863.

Respectfully returned to the Secretary of War.

The contract referred to within with Barriere & Bros. has long since expired.

It was executed December 16, 1862, and the supplies it called for were to have been delivered within two months thereafter. Nothing has ever been received under the contract, nor has there been any extension of time for this fulfillment.

General Johnston was advised to this effect.

A. R. LAWTON,

Quartermaster-General.

HDQRS. DIST. OF TEXAS, NEW MEXICO, AND ARIZONA,

Houston, November 16, 1863.

Brigadier General H. P. BEE,

Santa Gertrudes:

GENERAL: I am instructed by General Magruder to direct you to keep communication between Texas and Mexico open, in order that he may be able to communicate with our consular agent, Mr. [Charles J.] Helm, at Havana. He will probably send forward some communications to him in a few days. He relies upon your judgment as to the selection of the best route.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

STEPHEN D. YANCEY,

Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.

HEADQUARTERS FIRST DIVISION, ARMY OF TEXAS,

Camp on San Fernando, November 16, 1863.

Captain EDMUND P. TURNER,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Houston:

SIR: Since writing my last dispatch, I have, after most serious consideration of my situation and the best means of preparing to meet the enemy, concluded not to proceed to the Rio Grande with my small command, numbering to-day about 300 men. I respectfully submit the following as the result of my reflections:

From Saluria to Corpus [Christi] to be occupied by Hobby's regiment, with two companies of cavalry for picket duty on the islands. My headquarters to be at a point near this place, being nearly equidistant between Corpus [Christi] and Laredo, the shortest line between the Gulf and the Rio Grande; concentrate every available soldier and citizen at this camp, ready to move to repel attack from the coast or from the direction of Brownsville.

Four companies of the Thirty-third Regiment, under Major Benavides, to hold Ringgold Barracks until the cotton is crossed over, and to force