ances for difference of locations and other circumstances. They will require from their subordinates monthly reports, showing the quality of supplies purchased or manufactured by them: what thereof has been issued, and the residue on hand. A summary of these, together with a similar statement of his own operations, will be forwarded monthly by the chief officer to the Quartermaster-General, and the same will be accompanied by general remarks, showing of what supplies, either manufactured or in the raw material, he may have an excess beyond his future wants, so that it may be transferred elsewhere when needed. The average cost of each article of supply will also be stated.
Third. Quartermasters stationed at the various posts within either of said purchasing districts will be the subordinate purchasing officers therein, and before buying supplies or contracting therefor they will confer with the principal officer and conform to such general or specific instructions as he may give respecting the price, quantity or quality of the supplies to be bought.
Fourth. Main depots of supplies will be established at Richmond and Staunton, Va.: Releigh, N. C.; Columbus and Atlanta, Ga.; Huntsville and Montgomery, Ala.; Jackson, Miss.;Alexandria, La.,; Little Rock, Ark.; Knoxville, Tenn.; San Antonio, Tex.; or elsewhere, as may hereafter be indicated. These will not be subject to the orders of commanding generals, but will be under the exclusive control of the quartermaster-General, and issues therefrom will be made only on requisitions approved by him.
Minor depots may be established by the principal purchasing officers at such other points within their districts as the necessities of the service may require, and their locations will be reported from time to time to this office.
Fifth. The chief quartermaster of each separate army will draw supplies, as far as practicable, from the established depots of stores, and will make purchases thereof in the military department within which the army operates only when circumstances render that course absolutely necessary. He will then, whether acting in person or through subordinates, confer, if possible, with the principal purchasing-officer of the district in which he may be, and use every precaution to avoid competition.
Sixth. Forage and fuel purchased in the vicinity of an army are excepted from the above restriction. These can be best provided on the spot to the extent that the country affords them, and by the field quartermasters, and the chief quartermaster will be careful to see that the same are procured and paid for in accordance with the instructions issued by the War Department. Forage should always be drawn, when circumstances permit, from regions in advance of our armies and those most exposed to the enemy. Field quartermasters may also purchase, under the direction of the commanding officer, supplies of any character issued by this department from a region of country occupied temporarily by the forces of the Confederate States, and where no system of purchase is in operation.
Seventh. When special agents shall be sent out by the Quartermaster-General to obtain supplies, they will be instructed to report to the principal officer of the district in which they may go, and confer with him to avoid competition.
Eighth. All officers of this department will endeavor to avoid competing in prices with commissaries in the purchase of corn, or with ordnance officers in the purchase of hides, leather, harness, &c.