HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH, Numbers 57.
Hilton Head, S. C., May 1, 1864.
1. Pursuant to orders from the lieutenant-general commanding the armies of the United States, the undersigned hereby assumes command of the Department of the South.
2. All orders and regulations established by Major General Q. A. Gillmore, and now in operation, will remain in force till otherwise ordered.
3. Captain W. L. M. Burger is announced as the assistant adjutant-general of the department. All communications of an official nature for these headquarters will be addressed to him.
JNO. P. HATCH,
WASHINGTON, D. C., May 1, 1864.
Commanding Dept. of the South, South Carolina:
GENERAL: Obeying instructions from the War Department, dated February 14, 1864, I have the honor to inform you that a number of copies of the President's amnesty proclamation, dated December 8, 1863, together with copies of General Orders, Numbers 66, from War Department, dated February 18, 1864, in pamphlet form, attached, have been ordered to be forwarded to you for circulation among the rebel armies and inhabitants in your front. The Secretary of War directs that, upon receiving the proclamation and orders, you will sue such means as you have, such as sending scout and cavalry expeditions for this work, and that this distribution be made in such numbers that they cannot be suppressed.
One hundred thousand copies have been ordered to be forwarded which will be sent to my address in your care. You will please open official communications sent to me, sign the receipt, and forward them to the Adjutant-General of the Army. I have also the honor to inform you that reports of operations and successes in this distribution will be called for by the Adjutant-General of the Army from time to time.
I have the honor to be, general, most respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. A. ALGER,
Colonel Fifth Michigan Cavalry, Special Commissioner.
File and send word to post-office that all letters addressed to Colonel R. A. Alger will be sent to these headquarters.
JNO. P. HATCH.
HDQRS. DISTRICT OF FLORIDA, DEPT. OF THE SOUTH,
Jacksonville, Fla., May 1, 1864.
Major General PATTON ANDERSON,
Commanding C. S. Forces, East Florida:
GENERAL: I regret to be obliged to call your attention to a violation of the flag of truce sent to my lines yesterday afternoon. During the time my officer was in conference with yours, my picket was charged upon and one man captured (Allen Vankirk, Company H, Seventy-fifth Ohio Volunteers.)