The committee do not suppose there will be any necessity for resorting to the power to send for persons and papers conferred by the resolution, as it is not the intention fo the committee to ask for information which, in the judgment of the Department, ought not to be made public. You will oblige me, therefore, by furnishing at your earliest convenience the information which the committee is required to procure and report to the House, so far as you can do so without detriment to the public service.
Very respectfully, yours, &c.,
Chairman Committee on Military Affairs.
THIRTY-SIXTH CONGRESS, SECOND SESSION.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, December 31, 1860.
On motion of Mr. Stanton-
Resolved, That the standing Committee on Military Affairs be instructed to inquire and report to the House how, to whom, na at what price the public arms distributed since the 1st day of January, A. D. 1860, have been disposed of, and also into he condition of the forts, arsenals, dock-yards, &c., of the country; whether they are supplied with adquater garrisons, and whether any further legislation is required to enable the President to afford adequate protection to the public property; and that the committee have power to send for persons and papers and leave to report at any time.
J. W. FORNEY,
Memorandum for the Secretary.
Mr. Stanton says the committed desires no information which the Secretary may deem improper to be made public.
Shall the statements of the defensive condition fo Forts Sumter, Pickens, &c., and the strength of their garrisons, be communicated?
R. B. I[RWIN].
Numbers Be very particular in suppressing all that relates to 'Sumter, Pickens, &c."
Forts Sumter, Pickens, Taylor, and Jefferson withheld, after consulting General Totten and Colonel Cooper.
January 23, 1861.
ORDNANCE OFFICE, Washington, January 8, 1861.
Honorable JOSEPH HOLT,
Secretary of War:
SIR; In reply to that portion of the information called for by the resolution of the House of Representatives instructing the Committee on Military Affairs to "inquire into the sale and distribution of arms for the last year," &c., and in compliance with the request made to you by the Honorable B. Stanton, chairman of said committee, under date of 31st