HDQRS. DIST. TEXAS, NEW MEXICO, AND ARIZONA,
Rugeley's, December 7, 1863.
To the Planters and Farmers of Texas:
The major-general hereby calls upon the planters of Brazoria, Matagorda, and Fort Bend Counties to place all of their able-bodied male slaves, except one, at the disposal of the Government to work upon fortifications. Those of Matagorda and Brazoria Counties west of the San Bernard River will send their slaves to Hawkins' Landing on the Caney. Planters living in Fort Bend and Brazoria Counties east of the San Bernard will send theirs to Brazoria. Negroes within a circuit of 10 miles of Rugeley's, being assigned to Mr. Dance, assistant military engineer, and those furnished by planters for hauling corn to Elliott's Ferry, are not included in the foregoing. Planters of Grimes, Walker, Polk, Tyler, Jasper, Newton, and all other counties south and east of these, between the Brazos and Sabine Rivers, except Fort Bend and Brazoria, will send their slaves to Houston. Planters of Gonzales, De Witt, Victoria, Calhoun, Jackson, Lavaca, Wharton, Colorado, and Austin Counties, west of the Brazos, will send their slaves to Gonzales. Planters of Burnet, Travis, Bastrop, Fayette, Washington, Brazos, Madison, Houston, Angelina, San Augustine, Sabine, and all others east and north of the same and between the Colorado, Red Rivere, and Louisiana State line will send their slaves to Austin. Planters west and south of the Colorado not embraced in the foregoing will send their slaves to San Antonio. Slaves working at Sabine Pass or at any other point, under Government orders, will not be moved unless by special orders.
Lieutenant Colonel A. M. Lea, at Gonzales; Major Kellersberg, at Austin; Major Wilson, at Houston; Captain Schleicher, at San Antonio; Lieutenant Thompson, at Hawkins' Landing, and a quartermaster or his agent at Brazoria (or if there is none, one will be appointed for the purpose by Captain Wiggins), will provide the slaves at the several depots with rations, fuel, and quarters, and will employ a local physician for their treatment in sicknes and will provide generally in the best possible manner for their care and comfort. In the absence of either of the above-mentioned officers from their posts the post quartermaster at such posts will provide for the negroes as above ordered.
The foregoing calls is for able-bodied male slaves between the ages of sixteen and fifty years. Owners of slave will, to the extent of their ability, furnish their slaves with intrenching tools, such as axes, spades, shovels, hoes, picks, grubbing hoes, & c.
By order of Major General J. B. Magruder:
EDMUND P. TURNER,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF OBSERVATION,
Camp Wharton, January 8, 1864.
Captain E. P. TURNER,
Asst. Adjt. General, District of Texas, & c.:
SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of two communications dated January 5, 1864. The communication* from Captain
* Not found.