12th of June, 1863, when these bids were opened in presence of the council of administration.
Mr. John M. Lamb was found to have offered the highest sum ($53. 20 per day) for the privilege of supplying the army with newspapers and periodicals. He was accordingly sent for, nd agreed to the following conditions, viz: That he would supply all papers called for within the army by the various commands composing it, ordered by commanders, or the news agents belonging to the corps, divisions, and brigades, respectively, at 5 cents per copy, periodicals and illustrated papers excepted.
The difficulties attendant upon the supply of the army during its movements necessarily interfered with all plans, but the necessity of making money enough to meet the monthly payment to the medical director has proved a sufficient stimulus to Mr. Lamb to bring his papers into camp whenever it has been possible.
Thus far, the system has worked far better than any that has preceded it, the agents being obliged to furnish the papers called for and at fixed rates. The only complaints made to me are by newspaper agents and proprietors, who, by canvassing the troops themselves, have been able, heretofore to make large individual profits.
At present, officers who desire the latest news by telegraph take Washington and Baltimore papers, while the rank and file, who want more local news, take Philadelphia of New York papers, according to the States from which they hail. The newsboys inform me that they make the most money on the Baltimore Clipper and Washington Chronicle.
All of which is respectfully submitted.
M. R. PATRICK.
HDQRS. MID. DEPT., 8TH ARMY CORPS, Numbers 43.
Baltimore, August 10, 1863.
During the temporary absence of Major-General Schenck the undersigned, in pursuance of instructions from the War Department, assumes command of the Middle Department, the Eighth Army Corps.
W. W. MORRIS,
Brevet Brigadier-General, U. S. Army, Commanding.
HDQRS. DEPT. OF WEST VIRGINIA. Numbers 2.
Clarksburg, W. Va., August 10, 1863
I. The Department of West Virginia has been extended, by order of the War Department so as to include all the State of Maryland west of the Monocacy River, and that portion of Virginia in the vicinity of Harper's Ferry.
II. Commanding officers will make out and forward to these headquarters on the 5th, 15th, and 25th of each month, respectively, consolidated by the Army Regulations will be furnished as soon after the expiration of the month as practicable.
By order of Brigadier-General Kelley: