the purchase of army stores of all kinds, and to meet existing liabilities heretofore accrued.
All Government officers, agents, and contractors engaged in he purchase or removal of cotton in or through Texas will, without delay, authority under which they act; the amount of cotton purchased by them, and from whom; the disposition made of it, and the amount of cotton and transportation in their possession and under their control; and all parties having control of cotton, or cotton transportation belonging to the Government, will be governed by his instructions.
In future, all applications for the making of contracts based on cotton, or for exemptions from impressment in the District of Texas, &c., will, in every instance, be first presented to Lieutenant-General Hutchins for his approval. And all military officers in the District of Texas, &c., are prohibited from making such contracts or granting such exemptions, except upon application to Lieutenant-Colonel Hutchins, and his approval.
All cotton now or hereafter in transit, not exempted as above directed, will be liable at any time to be impressed under the directions of Lieutenant-Colonel Hutchins, to meet and relieve the immediate military necessities of this department, and the district commanders will issue all the necessary orders, and render all the military assistance required, to carry such orders into prompt execution.
Lieutenant-Colonel Hutchins will make his reports through Lieutenant Colonel W. A. Broadwell to department headquarters.
By command of Lieutenant General E. Kirby Smith:
GUY M. BRYAN,
Major, and Assistant Adjutant-General.
HDQRS. DIST. OF TEX., N. MEX., AND ARIZ., Numbers 327.
Houston, Tex., December 1, 1863.
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VI. In conformity to the above, Lieutenant Colonel W. J. Hutchins is assigned to duty as chief of the Texas cotton bureau.
All officers and agents engaged in the purchase or removal of cotton in this district will report to Lieutenant-Colonel Hutchins, and be governed by instructions from him.
Those who have contracts based upon the exportation of cotton will present them for revision, and those who hold permits to export cotton will submit them for ratification or cancelment, as this cotton bureau may determine.
Lieutenant-Colonel Hutchins will exercise his discretion in executing any order upon the subject of cotton previously issued from these headquarters.
All transportation employed by the cotton bureau is exempted from impressment, and will not be collected by officers of this district.
By command of Major General J. Bankhead Magruder:
W. A. ALSTON,
Captain, and Assistant Adjutant-General.