the same shall be filled; but, as far as practicable, will be allowed to choose between the two arms of the service and particular company or regiment.
3. Should the number of absentees of a somewhat permanent character in any light battery of 4 guns reduce the effective strength below 84 privates, or for a 6-gun battery below 125 privates, reduction will not take place until a special detailed report is made to these headquarters, with a return of the company, showing the names of all absentees, the length of their absence, and, as far as practicable, the cause of absence or nature of employment of all detached absentees.
III. In making transfers a pro-rata distribution must be made of all privates who are borne on the rolls of the several companies of a regiment, but who are known to be disabled or absent by reason of chronic sickness and unfit for service. This should be effected in each command in a spirit of harmony and regard for the god of the service, to which end a board of three officers, including at least one field officer, should be appointed by the commander of the regiment, brigade, or military district, to arrange for a proper basis of equalization, subject to the supervision of the regimental or brigade commander and approval of the district commander.
The same board will further taken into consideration and report to these headquarters to what extent it may be practicable in each or any regiment to distribute equally among the several companies thereof men detached for twelve months past as artisans in arsenals or in any workshops, and detailed in staff offices or employment.
IV. District commanders will be given thirty days from the receipt of this order to carry it into execution, and at the expiration of that time the number of transfers from each company will be given. Should all the companies in any district be filled to the maximum, a list of those men who are not transferred belonging to companies having over the maximum will be sent to these headquarter-each one making a selection of some company-to the end that, if all the companies int he department have the maximum prescribed by law, the excess may be turned over to the commandants of conscripts of the States from which they come for assignment.
By command of General Beauregard:
Chief of Staff.
HDQRS. DEPT. OF S. CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA,
Charleston, S. C., January 21, 1863.
General SAMUEL COOPER,
Adjutant and Inspector General, Richmond, Va.:
GENERAL: In three weeks the time of service of the South Carolina reserve regiments will have expired and a material reduction of my forces will take place. Unless otherwise directed, I shall construe the circular from your office, of the 8th instant, to authorize me to send officers to these regiments before the expiration of their time of service, to enroll all person subject to conscription, as there must be material loss of time if those troops must pass through the camp of instruction at Columbia before I can again have their services.
G. T. BEAUREGARD,