War of the Rebellion: Serial 042 Page 0536 W. FLA., S. ALA., S. MISS., LA., TEX., N. MEX. Chapter XXXVIII.

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cipally made by officers of the Treasury Department, and they did not feel themselves properly controlled by military order.

As well as I can learn Mr. Block has purchased about 14,000 bales in Arkansas; Major [A. W.] McKee, through his various agents, viz:


Dr. C. G. Young, in the Washita country................ 20,000

Lane & Belknap, in the vicinity of this place......... 25,000

Francis Webb, in Natchitoches Parish.................. 12,500

M. M. Rhorer, in Rapides............................... 10,000

Thomas D. Miller, in Saint Landry and Avoyelles....... 3,000

Major Simeon Hart, quartermaster, under instructions

from War Department................................... 15,997

Mr. Sampson, your agent............................... 250


Total [including Block's purchase of 14,000 bales]... 100,747

In my plans originally submitted to the lieutenant-general, it was recommended that purchases should be continued under the existing arrangements in sections of country where the cottons were not exposed to loss, and that those crops located at points east of this, liable to capture or destruction, should be removed to places deemed, safe for their deposit to such an extent as transportation could be had, and the balance if it could not be destroyed should be transferred to foreigners, and the value obtained, so that the enemy would be prevented from getting it by the protection afforded in the flags of other nations and such terms as neutrals could make with the Federal authorities.

Two efficient quartermasters, Captains [W. W.] Barrett and [N. A.] Birge, were put to work getting up transportation. They have acted with great energy, and succeeded in securing three hundred and fifty wagons, and have removed over 7,000 bales to the banks of the Sabine River costing the Government the established rates of freight fixed in the quartermaster's department, some 40 miles distant from this, were sheds are being constructed to protect the cotton from the weather, pillage and waste, with arrangements made to transport 5,000 bales by flat-boats to Orange, and thence by railroad to Houston.

In order to meet matured obligations of the Government due in that place in cotton, Major McKee sent to Niblett's Bluff about 1,600 bales which were turned over to Major B. Bloomfield chief quartermaster District of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona General Magruder having urged repeatedly the transfer from Louisiana to his district of cotton required to pay the debts already contracted, and purchase further, supplies from Mexico.

There had been conflict in the management of cotton business in Texas, which gave rise to numerous and grievous complaints, and some disaffection among the people and depreciation of Confederate States money. In the month of September, General Smith ordered me to proceed to Texas and establish at Houston a branch bureau for that State, placing Colonel A. W. Terrell at its head, who had agreed to accept the position as chief. But this gentleman found the whole cotton question in such a chaotic and unsatisfactory condition that the declined after six weeks' discussion of its merits, any connection with the office which had been tendered him. Subsequently an office was established at Houston, with Lieutenant Colonel W. J. Hutchins as chief of work under a military order, which is designed to serve a character in the absence of any specific law defining the principles of the bureau or any regulations to govern his actions in the capacity of chief.

The inclosed printed papers may indicate to you the general plans and purposes of the Texas office.* The power vested in its chief, as also


*Not found.