War of the Rebellion: Serial 122 Page 0044 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.

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information desired by your committee respecting the recent distribution of arms to arsenals in the Southern States.

Refereeing to your remark touching the delay in answering your former inquiries, I beg to observe that there has been no such delay beyond that necessarily involved in the preparation of the information called for by the respective bureaus, a work upon which, generally speaking, only a very limited force could be advantageously employed. You will notice, for example, that the last report called for in response to your letter of the 8th instant-that of the Chief of Ordnance-did not reach me until yesterday afternoon.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Secretary of War.


ORDNANCE OFFICE, Washington, D. C., January 21, 1861.

Honorable JOSEPH HOLT,

Secretary of War:

SIR: In compliance with the request in the letter from the Honorable B. Stanton of 18th instant, referred by you to this office, I have the honor to transmit herewith the following papers:

First. Copy of directions from the Secretary of War, dated December 30 [29], 1859, for the transfer of arms to Southern arsenals.

Second. Copies of three orders for supplies form this office, dated January 30, 1860, these orders being the necessary action for carrying into effect the previous direction of the Secretary of War, December 30 [29], 1859.

Third. A statement of arms issued on account of the quotas due the States for 1861 in advance, the date of the orders directing the issue, and States to which issued.*

Mr. Stanton's letter is herewith returned.

Very respectfully, &c.,


Colonel of Ordnance.

[inclosure Numbers 1.]

WAR DEPARTMENT, December 29, 1859.

The Colonel of Ordnance will give the requisite orders for supplying the arsenals at Fayetteville, N. C.; Charleston, S. C.; Augusta, Ga.; Mount Vernon, Ala., and Baton Rouge, La., with the following arms, in additional to those on hand at those arsenals, viz: 65,000 percussion muskets (caliber .69) and 40,000 altered to percussion (caliber .69) from Springfield Armory; also 6,000 percussion rifles (caliber .54) from Watertown Arsenal and 4,000 percussion rifles (caliber .54) from Watervliet Arsenal. These orders will be given from time to time as may be most suitable for economy and convenience of transportation. The distribution to the five first-named arsenals will be in proportion to their respective means of proper storage.


Secretary of War.


*Copy of this statement not found.