In compliance with that desire I have to report: In my letter of the 3rd instant it was stated that I had suggested the propriety of obtaining from abroad some small-arms and rifled cannon, not that I had made any formal report on the subject. The circumstances attending that suggestion were as follows:
In the latter part of April last, between the 23rd, and 27th, I had a conversation with General Scott in relation to procuring with dispatch additional supplies of small-arms and field artillery, which it was then though might be obtained from abroad by sending an agent to purchase them. I suggested 100,000 rifled muskets and eight batteries (forty-eight pieces) of rifled cannon. The person who was then thought of as the agent was Mr. D. Tyler, of Connecticut, now General Tyler, who was then here and about to return home, but who staid over until something more definite on the subject should be determined. I accordingly mentioned to you at your office the suggestion above referred to, to which you replied in substance that you considered it preferable to obtain the articles at home rather than abroad. In the multiplicity of public affairs then and since pressing on you it is not to be wondered at if this conversation should have escaped your memory. A short time after I was sent for by General Scott, whom I found with the Assistant Secretary of State, when my views on this same subject were asked for, and as my previous suggestions seemed to be considered rather too liberal in regard to the quantity of arms, &c., I stated that I might and would so modify it as to include 50,000 muskets and eight batteries. I have not since learned whether any measures have been taken to carry out either suggestion.
JAS. W. RIPLEY.
WASHINGTON, June 11, 1861.
The Government has already accepted ten regiments from the State of Indiana. I think at least six more ought to be received from that State, two to be those of Colonel James W. McMillan and Colonel William L. Brown, and the other four to be designated by the Governor of the State of Indiana, and to be received into the volunteer service of the United States according to the "plan of organization" in the General Orders of the War Department, Numbers 15. When they report to Major-General McClellan in condition to pass muster according to that order, and with the approval of the Secretary of War, to be indorsed hereon, and a copy left in his Department, I direct that the whole six, or any smaller number of said regiments, be received.
Washington, June 11, 1861.
Honorable SIMON CAMERON,
Secretary of War:
SIR: The present condition of our supplies of sabers, swords, and pistols renders it necessary that measures should be taken to increase our stock in time to admit of manufacture before its exhaustion. I therefore propose to order 15,000 cavalry, and artillery sabers, 7,000 non-commissioned officers', musicians', and and artillerymen's swords; 4,800 swords for staff, mounted, and foot officers, and 5,000 Colt pistols; each kind of swords and sabers in due proportion to the probable requirements of the service.