trict running around the western and northern boundary of my department, within which persons of the description I have named are to be found. My application, which I now respectfully repeat, had reference to that strip of country and to conscripts within it which could not otherwise be reached.
Hoping I may have the pleasure of receiving your answer by the messenger who is the bearer of this,
I remain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
P. S. - The course of events has been such in this department as to allow of the uprising of a feeling of discontent and lawlessness in certain parts of it, which has become threatening. Of the unsound and rebellious condition of the pine-land counties in Eastern Mississippi you have been advised. The same state of things is growing up throughout the river counties in Mississippi, especially in the northwest. I have to-day also had a paymaster, sent out by the War Department to pay certain claims against the Government in the counties of North Alabama, call at my quarters to inform me that he found things in that part of the State such as to make it impossible for him with safety to perform the work assigned him. Similar information comes to me from several other parties extending through this country. Now one of two things has to be done; either I must distribute the force I have combined in the army in the field, or so much of it as may be necessary to maintain order throughout the department, or I must be authorized to raise a force for that purpose out of material exempted by law from field service and organize that for such a duty. Your authority alone is necessary to enable me to accomplish the latter, as there is plenty of material at hand to enable me to do it, and I beg leave to add that the existing pressure demands immediate decision in this connection. I beg leave to call your attention to an indorsement made on a paper sent the War Department by the Alabama delegation concerning the defense of North Alabama, which I send to the Adjutant-General by the messenger who takes this. The change of boundary thus suggested, or something approaching it, is indispensable to successful operations and administration in that region. I trust we shall have the Department to act on it as early as possible.
The officer who left this letter will see the honorable Secretary Monday morning (April 11), which he says General Polk directed, to make fuller verbal communication in explanation of the subjects mentioned within.
R. G. H. KEAN,
Chief of Bureau of War.
APRIL 11, 1864.
To the CONSCRIPTION BUREAU:
Will you consider the inclosed letter and let me have your views upon General Polk's request at your earliest convenience, that I may have the advantage of them in answering the general's application?
J. A. SEDDON,