War of the Rebellion: Serial 102 Page 0682 LOUISIANA AND THE TRANS-MISSISSIPPI. Chapter LX.

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far as Alexandria. They will doubtless be ready at the mouth of the river by the time you reach there.


Lieutenant-Colonel and Assistant Adjutant-General.


New Orleans, May 30, 1865.


Port Hudson, La.:

Forward the following dispatch immediately, and acknowledge receipt:

Captain FITZHUGH, U. S. Navy,

U. S. Steamer Ouachita, mouth of Red River:

Dispatch of the 28th received. Besides two tin-clads for the Red River I should like to have one iron-clad to go up the Washita. Can that be done?


Major-General, Commanding.


Saint Louis, Mo., May 30, 1865.

Lieutenant General U. S. GRANT,

General-in-Chief U. S. Army:

GENERAL: A very singular question has arisen in this State to which I desire to invite the attention of the Government. An ordinance of the late constitutional State convention of Missouri vacated all the civil offices in the State and conferred upon the Governor the power to fill them by his own appointment. In accordance with this ordinance he has by original appointments and by reappointments filled all the offices thus vacated. In some cases the present incumbents, having been elected at the last general election, assert that the vacating ordinance is unconstitutional and therefore refuse to surrender their offices or their records to the new appointees. If the supreme court of the State were intact there would be no doubt as to the legal mode of procedure in these cases, but unfortunately the offices of the supreme judges were also vacated by this ordinance, and there seems to be no judicial tribunal to which the decisions on these cases can be referred. The governor of the State is, therefore, left to enforce this ordinance and to install his new appointees into office in the manner which seems to him most judicious. He has called on the military commanders of U. S. Troops in Missouri to send a force under his direction to dispossess the old State officers and install the new. I have thus far declined to furnish this force. First, because I do not think it necessary to do so in a State like Missouri, which has a loyal State executive and a majority of over 40,000 loyal voters; second, because I do not feel authorized to furnish U. S. troops for such purpose until the civil posse and the militia of the State have been called out and have proved unable to execute these processes; third, because where a State is in the condition of Missouri with a loyal executive, a large and organized militia force and a very large majority of office-holders loyal men, it is abundantly able to enforce its own laws and ordinances, and has no right to call upon U. S. troops before using its own civil