War of the Rebellion: Serial 121 Page 0323 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION AND CONFEDERATE.

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HDQRS. SEVENTY-FOURTH U. S. COLORED TROOPS,

Ship Island, Miss., March 1, 1865.

Brigadier General W. HOFFMAN, Commissary-General of Prisoners:

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following inspection report of the condition of the prisoners of war at this station for the week ending the month of February, 1865:

Conduct - good. Cleanliness - good. Clothing - good, considering the cold weather abated. Bedding - straw. State of quarters - tents rotten. State of mess - houses - none. State of kitchen - good. Food, quality of - good. Food, quantity of - plenty. Water - good. Sinks - good. Police of grounds - good. Drainage - good. Police of hospital - good. Attendance of sick - good. Hospital diet - good. General health of prisoners - good. Vigilance of guard - excelent.

The tents now occupied by the prisoners are so rotten that a norther tears them down by the dozen. Can the prison fund be used for ordering lumber, &c., to build barracks?

Respectfully referred to the Commissary-General of Prisoners.

ERNEST W. HOLMSTEDT,

Colonel Seventy-fourth U. S. Colored Troops,

Commanding Ship Island, Miss.

[First indersement.]

OFFICE COMMISSARY-GENERAL OF PRISONERS,

Washington, D. C., March 28, 1865.

Respectfully returned to Colonel E. W. Holmstedt, commanding Ship Island, whose attention is called to paragragh IX of the circular from this office of 20th of April, 1864, and to the "directions" printed on this formf, and he will furnish without delay the plans and estimates for the barracks which he reports as necessary. Much time would have been saved if he had been governed by these orders before asking authority to build barracks.

By order of Brigadier General W. Hoffman, Commissary-General of Prisoners:

W. T. HARTZ,

Captain and Assistant Adjutant-General.

[Second indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS, Ship Island, April 18, 1865.

Respectfully returned, explaining why the question wihtin was asked.

Captain M. R. Marston, First U. S. Infantry, commissary of prisoners at New Orleans, arrived at this post November 24, 1864, with a plan for the construction of prisoners' barracks as proposed by General W. Hoffman, Commissary-General of Prisoners. I was requested to submit a plan of my own, which done, was told to await further orders.

ERNEST W. HOLMSTEDT,

Colonel, Commanding Post.

HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE CUMBERLAND,

OFFICE PROVOST-MARSHAL-GENERAL,

Eastport, March 1, 1865.

General W. D. WHIPPLE,

Assistant Adjutant-General and Chief of Staff:

I have the honor to inclose my report of the trip to Dixie. I send it by a special messenger and have directed him to wait for dispatches in return. Will you have the kindness to present the matter to the