it had been issued on the 4th of January, 1864, gave to Major Allen the following instructions:
OFFICE CHIEF COMMISSARY, Savannah, Ga., January 4, 1864.
Major A. M. ALLEN:
I send you herewith copy of order from General Beauregard, the same as sent you through Major Morgan. You will not obey this order, as it is an invasion of the jurisdiction assigned to me by the Secretary of War which I cannot tolerate.
J. L. LOCKE,
Commissary of Subsistence.
Accordingly, when Major Morgan appeared at Columbus on or about the 6th day of January, 1864, and presented the order, Major Allen indorsed a copy of Major Locke's instruction, quoted above, on the back of it, and added over his own official signature, "In consequence of the above order from my chief, I cannot execute this order," and did maintain his position of disobedience.
And now as to the propriety of the order and the motive and spirit which have inspired the anomalous conduct of Major Locke, upon which chance has enabled me to shed some light. It so happened that on or about the 21st December, 1863, Major Allen, commissary of subsistence at Columbus, informed Major Locke that he had in store some 150 barrels "fine stall-fed beef," which "ought to be used soon," and that he would therefore sent it to Major Robertson, at Savannah, unless otherwise ordered, but suggested if not needed for "immediate use (by Major R.) it my be well to forward to Bragg's army." On the 23rd December, Major Locke wrote to Major A.in reply:
I have written to Major Cummings, at Atlanta, to telegraph you if he can get the 150 barrels pickled beef forward in season. If he can, if not, send it to Major Robertson, at Savannah.
This was his disposition of this valuable meat until iformed by Major Allen the same day by telegraph that Major Morgan was at Columbus with "urgent demands" for some of it" to feed a brigade at Charleston," when suddenly he telegraphed that his beef could not be sent to Charleston, "with General Bragg's army at our (their) doors." This,when but a moment before he left authorized to direct that in a certain event all this beef could be diverted from that army to Savannah, where already he had accumulated meat supplies fourteen times as large as that in depot at Charleston, for a force more than three times as large as that dependent on the Savannah depot, and actually under fire of the enemy. On the 24th December (the next day), it seems he telegraphed and wrote to Major Allen, directing the meat in question to be sent Major Cummings, at Atlanta, without having, it would appear, received any requisition in the interval for the met from that quarter. Nevertheless, it is apparent that on the 6th day of January, when Major Morgan presented the order of these headquarters, applied for and was refused the meat, it had not yet been sent forward to Atlanta, and Major Locke, in his official report to these headquarters, reports 67,000 pounds of salt beef in reserve at Columbus on the 1st day of January. From the foregoing it must be apparent that Colonel Northrop, in his indorsement on the copy of the order in question, submitted by the War Office, has been led into inaccurate statements. It is not the fact,as he alleges, that Major Allen originally (that is, on December 23) refused to deliver these troops to Major Morgan,