HDQRS. DEPT. OF S. C., GA., AND FLA., Numbers --.
is announced as chief commissary of this department, and as the organ of communication and requisition with the several State commissaries appointed under the circular of the Bureau of Subsistence, dated April 15, 1863.
II. To guard against unnecessary delays, brigade commissaries in Georgia and Florida, under the orders of district commanders, may make requisitions directly on the chief State commissaries in their respective districts, without previous reference to the chief commissary of this department, but copies of all such requisitions will be forwarded to him without delay.
III. All army depot commissaries will forward semi-monthly to the chief commissary of this department a statement of all subsistence supplies on hand and such other papers as may be required by that officer for this information and aid in the discharge of his duties.
HDQRS. DEPT. OF S. CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA,
Savannah, Ga., January 26, 1864.
General S. COOPER,
Adjutant and Inspector General, Richmond, Va.:
GENERAL: Your letter of the 17th instant has been received, and in reply I beg leave to say that the orders in the case of Brigadier-General Evans had already been published, and the release of that officer from arrest directed at the date of your communication, as will be seen by General Orders, Numbers 126, series 1863, Department of South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, herewith, another copy of which, with the proceedings, having been forwarded on the 15th instant.
I cannot but regret that in connection with General Evans I am debarred a privilege which has been repeatedly allowed to be exercised in the course of this war by other commanders of the armies of the Confederate States, my juniors as well as seniors.
The board of examiners provided for in the act approved October 13, 1862, I did not order, for various reasons, including my inability to appoint at this time 3 officers of suitable rank without serious inconvenience to the service; the delay that hitherto has invariably attended final action on the decisions of all such boards held in the department, and my indisposition to subject an officer who had twice served in battle under my orders in the first year of the war with merit, indeed, distinction, to the humiliation involved by such an examination.
Knowing, however, that he had become a disturbing element in his brigade, that some of the superior officers in its occupied relations toward him of such fierce personal hostility as to create inextinguishable discord, that the confidence in him of a large number of the officers and men of the brigade had become materially impaired, and that the state of discipline and instruction into which the brigade under his command had fallen was bad, I was forced to be unwilling to intrust the command again to his hands, and accordingly the course I adopted.
35 R R-VOL XXXV, PT I