To insure promptness the orders to General Maury were telegraphed by the Secretary of War immediately after the agreement was made with General Grant.
THOMAS L. BAYNE,
HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY,
Washington, D. C., February 17, 1865.
Lieutenant-General GRANT, City Point:
GENERAL: I am directed by the Secretary of War to forward to you the inclosed letter of General Beall, and to say that General Vance has been released on parole to assist General Beall, and also that three officers have been sent to the prison deports as agreed upon. It will be seen from this letter that all the proceeds of the rebel cotton are devoted to supplying the rebel prisoners with new clothing, shoes, and blankets. Not a cent is expended for provisions. The result is that we feed their prisoners permit the rebel Government to send cotton within our lines, free of all charge, to purchase and carry back the means of fitting out their own men for the field. Under these circumstances the Secretary of War is not disposed to sanction the admission of any more cotton on the same terms.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. W. HALLECK,
Major-General and Chief of Staff.
NEW YORK CITY, February 10, 1865.
Honorable SECRETARY OF WAR, Richmond, Va.:
I have the honor to report that 830 of the 1,000 bales of cotton which were to be sent to this city, sold, and the proceeds to be expended to supply prisoners [of] war, under the late agreement made between General Grant and Colonel R. Ould, arrived here on the 24th of January. The remaining 170 bales, on account of the incapacity of the vessel, the U. S. transport Atlanta, to bring them, were left with the U. S. quartermaster at Fort Morgan, Ala., and are daily looked for. The cotton reached this place in very bad condition and the bill of lading shows that it was received in this condition. It had all to be repicked and rebaled and was sold at public auction on the 8th; averaged 82 48/100 cents per pound, which is considered by the best judges to have been a remarkably good sale. The long delay in the arrival of the cotton has caused it to bring far less than was expected at the time of the agreement. The waste in transporting the cotton, which was in a very bad condition, was considerable. The proceeds of the cotton will furnish but a small portion of the actual wants of the prisoners, and some arrangement should at once be made to send an additional quantity of cotton under the agreement, and I would respectfully suggest that it be sent from a convenient point, and that the delay be as little as possible. I have purchased 16, 983 blankets, 16,216 jackets and coats, 19,888 pair of pants, 19,000 overshirts, 5,948 pair of drawers, 10,140 pair of socks, 17,000 pair of shoes, and have since that 4th instant been sending the supplies to the different prisons daily. I take pleasure in stating that the U. S. officers in Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and this city have treated me with courtesy and given every facility in their
16 R R-SERIES II, VOL VIII.