this is the region reported exhausted by the large command of cavalry in that country during the early portion of the winter. I understand it is accounted for in this way: Each household is allowed a certain quantity for twelve months by Colonel Corley's schedule. At the expiration of, say, six months for example, Major Mason ascertains that only one-fourth has been used, which in "justice, equity, and necessity" makes one-fourth available for the starving horses of the Army of Northern Virginia, charged with the defense of the inalienable rights and property of the aforesaid husehold, and at the expiration of a fractional part of the ensuing six months another examination will disclose another quantity availablek for the Government. These facts show, first, that Colonel Corley's schedule for maintenance of household is too liberal, and should be changed. In this connection I beg to urge that in no case should persons not connected with the army, and who are amply compensated for all that is taken, be allowed more subsist ence per day than the noble veterans who are periling their lives in the cause and at every sacrifice are enduring hardship and exposure in the ranks. Second, the amount on hand throughout Virginia should be periodically examined in order that whatever is on hand above the pro rata allowance for the unexpired period of time may be made immediately availablek for the troops in the field. Third, it isk believed that the extensive iron manufacturing companies have much more grain as well as long forage allowed for the maintencance of their works than comports with a correct idea of the "justice, equity, and necessity" of the case. I will instance one: Joseph R. Anderson & Co. in the counties of Augusta, Rockbridge, and Botetourt, and doubtless many more counties. Under the same class of allowances or exemptions I will include the large amount of grain allowed the railroads, and will instance one: The Virginia Central Railroad, which has a large amount set a Part by the War Department in Albemarle and other counties. I for one shall not be surprised if a faithful application of the principles and practrice embodied in this communiclation diclosed the fact that had it been done during the winter, the cavalry of this army need not have dispersed on account of no forage, nor the capital of the Confederacy in consequence thereof been seriously threatened by the enemy's cavalry. These matters of vital intfederacy are worthy the serious consideration of the Department of War, whence these examptions directly emanate, and require its careful and faithful investigation. They are earnestly commenced to its notice in a spirit of fervent patriotism and zeal for the cause. The careful husbanding and diligent application of the resources of the country are not only wise measures, but are the imperative duty of the authorities immediately charged with the maintenance and sustenance of the army in the field.
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. E. B. STUART,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF NORTHERN VIRIGNIA,
April 15, 1864.
Respectfully referred to Colonel Corley for statement of allowance of corn to be retained by huseholders, &c.
R. E. LEE,