War of the Rebellion: Serial 106 Page 0078 OPERATIONS ON THE PACIFIC COAST. Chapter LXII.

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from Libertad; Fort Yuma, in latitude 32 deg. 43' 32. 3'' north, longitude 114 deg. 32' 51. 61'' west; Tucson, in latitude 32 deg. 12' 54. 5'' north, longitude 110 deg. 52' 55'' west. Should the route, however, continue via Fort Yum, there is an item of expense at that post which I respectfully urge claims serious consideration, and that is the ferriage. The stores for this Territory, as well as those for Fort Yuma, are landed on the California instead of the Arizona side of the river, a course, in my humble opinion, that is not at all necessary, for it is well known the Government has reserved land on this side of the Colorado where steamers could always land freight, thus saving the ferriage our trains have to pay to cross to the side of the fort. I understand the ferriage per wagon each way is $4. If the stores must be landed on the Yuma side the ferriage for one train would pay for a ferry-boat to belong to the Government. But there is another item in regard to this ferriage-for example, a train arrives at Fort Yuma from this place. They require repairs for wagons and shoeing for mules. When the water is high they have to return to this side, go down the river to another ferry, cross there and have repairs, &c., made at workshops, recross, ascend the river, and again cross to Fort Yuma, thus making five crossings in one trip. This is not always the case, but it occasionally happens. On my way here in May I had to have animals crossed and recrossed actually seven times. Take this business of transporting freight by way of the Colorado and Fort Yuma, and it is my opinion, given from a sense of duty, that if any merchant or private citizen conducted his business in such a manner he would be looked upon as a fit subject for a commission of lunacy, not fit to manage his own affairs. Indeed, when the subject is thoroughly examined, I hope one of these days that it will be seen that Fort Yuma is not necessary as a military post at all, especially if this Territory is to be garrisoned. There cannot, I think, be any necessity for it on account of Indians, or if there be, a very small garrison would suffice. If I have in anything that I have herein said gone beyond what my position would strictly warrant my only apology is a sincere, strong, earnest desire to economize the public funds and means, especially necessary now that our country calls so loudly upon every patriot to do his utmost in its defense. If I cannot fight for it in the field I may try to stop a leak in a treasury around which so many hungry vampires hover. In all the allusions to cost of fright, the gross wight and not the net is considered. In estimating the cost of the ration here I find that I overlooked the fact that it is the nest and not the gross weight that should be had in view; therefore, the rations costs in reality very nearly what Captain Davis estimates, viz, 50 cents. For as the gross weight of the ration (3. 0471 pounds) exceeds the net weight (2. 3912 pounds), so will the ft weight exceed that on the gross (i. e., 10. 21 cents), which adds 2. 80 cents to the estimate I made of its cost, raising it to 49. 30 cents.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Major, First Cavalry California Volunteers, Commanding.

[Inclosure A.] OFFICE OF CHIEF COMMISSARY, COLUMN FROM CALIFORNIA, Tucson, Ariz. Ter., June 26, 1862.

Lieutenant B. C. CUTLER,

Actg. Asst. Adjt. General, Headquarters Column from California:

SIR: I have the honor to report, for the information of the commanding general, that the following proposal was made to me in Magdalena,