revocation of General Orders, Numbers 29, from these headquarters, which establishes a system of free schools for the white children in this city and provides for the support of the same from the civil fund. Several paragraphs in the communication above referred to lead me to think that the major-general commanding must have failed to receive a communication written by me on the 6th instant and forwarded to your office about that date, fully setting forth the status of the public schools of this city. I have, therefore, the honor to inclose a copy of this communication, to which I would respectfully refer. * One paragraph of the general's letter read as follows, viz, "Both soldierly honor and simple justice require that, during our military occupation of this department, no unjust distinctions as to privileges and favors be made against a loyal man resident therein," &c., a principle in which I fully concur; and by reference to my letter of the 6th it will be seen that I have there stated: "Therefore I do not think that the education of the colored children can for the rest of the season be put upon a better basis than it now is, under which the colored children seem to be considerably better provided for, in proportion to the numbers, than the white are now. " That is to say, that the colored children were better provided for in an educational point of view before the publication of General Orders, Numbers 29, than the white children were after its publication, which is literally true, and it was that 'simple justice" might be done, so far as the facilities of education were concerned, that General Orders, Numbers 29, was published. The reasons why no improvements can be made in the colored schools before the expiration of the present term will appear from that portion of my letter of the 6th instant which immediately precedes the portion quoted. Another paragraph from the letter of the major-general commanding reads as follows, viz: "I consider the general order referred to as unjust toward the blacks, in that it directs the mayor of Savannah ex officio to act in the matter of educating white children alone. * * * The mayor of Savannah is bound to act and is expected to act with equal solicitude for the welfare and improvement of all classes of residents of the city. "
And, further, I would state that I regard the principles enunciated above as true, but would state in reply what I, in effect, stated in my previous communication, that General Saxton having taken control of the education of the colored children of Eastern Georgia, under, I presume, proper instructions, and having sent a superintendent and teachers here for the same, the matter of the education of that class of children has been entirely taken out of my hands, as there cannot be two heads to one system. If the education of the colored children of this district is relinquished to my charge, every endeavor will be made by me to place these schools on the same footing as those of the white children, and they will be supported by the civil fund equally with the white schools. As I have previously had occasion to state, I would also beg leave again to state that as far as my official acts are concerned there is no distinction made on account of color. I would therefore respectfully recommend, in order to avoid all future misunderstanding, and in order to encourage the educational interest in the children in this city, that General Saxton relinquish to me the control of the education of colored children and that all divided responsibility be removed.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Brevet Major-General, Commanding.
*See May 6, p. 418.