War of the Rebellion: Serial 124 Page 0683 UNION AUTHORITIES.

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colored men in the free States which I had established at Buffalo, N. Y. This organization consisted of salaried agents in most of the large cities, and sub-agents paid a recruiting free for the men procured by them. It was then my intention to retire from this work. In reply you requested me to retain it for the service of the War Department and offered to make me recruiting commissioner for the United States with liberty to make and execute my own plans and audit the accounts of my agents. Funds were to be placed at my disposal from the secret service fund of the Department. I accepted the offer and reported to you in person for duty on the 13th of June, and was directed to proceed to Philadelphia and superintend the raising of colored troops in Pennsylvania.

This duty has been successfully performed. One colored regiment (Third U. S. Colored Volunteer) of 800 men was raised in four weeks and the Sixth U. S. Colored Volunteers has four companies of eighty men each.

Of late the draft has interfered with recruiting, but when that is filled and colored men have no chance to be paid as substitutes, I think recruiting here will be resumed with spirit.

On the 13th of June when I applied to you for funds I was informed that you had decided to draw on the fund for recruiting, &c., of the volunteer army, and I was directed to apply to Major Vincent for information as to the manner of accounting for such funds. From him I received information that civilians could not be paid as recruiting agents of the War Department and that it would be necessary to give my agents commissions in the volunteer regiments and afterward detail them for service under my orders.

I also found it necessary to acquaint myself with the details of the recruiting service to enable me to decide in what manner I could connect my mode of recruiting with that authorized by the War Department.

It soon became apparent to me that my agents to be efficient must be as heretofore under my exclusive control, and I took measures to raise a fund by subscriptions in our large cities to defray such expenses of recruiting in the Southern States as could not legally be paid by the War Departmeave been very successful. Fifty thousand dollars has been pledged for this purpose in New England, and I have encouragement that all that will be wanted can be procured in other cities, including New York and Philadelphia. This fund will be sufficient for all purposes except the payment of the recruiting fee of $2 per man, authorized by law to be paid to any person who will bring an acceptable recruit to a station. The payment of this trifling sum to colored men of ability will encourage them to devote themselves to the work, and their advocacy of this service will create a general impression on their race favorable to the service. Many of them will venture within the enemy's lines, prompted by hatred of slavery and the desire to earn money, and we may reasonably expect soon to demoralize the slave population everywhere within the enemy's lines. The recruiting fee will be found a powerful instrument in our hands.

On the 10th instant, having funds in my possession, I notified you that I was ready for recruiting in the Southern States, and the next morning proceeded to Baltimore to confer with Colonel Birney. A fortnight earlier I had, with his consent, placed one of my agents under his direction and advanced him funds from my private means (his own being exhausted) to aid to the work. I was much pleased to