War of the Rebellion: Serial 124 Page 0926 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.

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of the Government those who are incapable of private and public service. It is indispensable that the Government should decide immediately what is to be done with these two different classes of charities, both of which are increasing in magnitude and importance. If the property which is now applied in a very great degree to the aggrandizement of individual fortunes cannot be applied to the support of these people, appropriations must be made directly by the Government for this purpose. I wait with solicitude your instructions upon this subject.

You must pardon my renewed reference to this question on the ground of its pressing importance.

I have the honor to be, with much respect, your obedient servant,

N. P. BANKS,

Major-General, Commanding.

[Inclosure.]

OFFICE CHIEF COMMISSARY OF SUBSISTENCE,

New Orleans, October 24, 1863.

Major General N. P. BANKS,

Commanding Department of the Gulf:

GENERAL: When you assumed command of the Department of the Gulf in December, 1862, the number of destitute poor thrown immediately upon you for support, and which have been subsisted upon provisions supplied by your order from the commissary department under my charge, was as follows, to wit:

Besides the inmates of eight orphan asylums and institutions for the maintenance of the indigent-since increased to twelve- numbering about 1,600, and the entire colored population of the State so far as it was thrown out of occupation and support by the disorder of the times and the flight of the employes as the army advanced, and the cupidity, avarice, and robbery of overseer and others, unrestrained by the former order of things, and many of whom were too young or too old to aid themselves in the least, whilst others for the time could find no employment, amounting to at least, in the aggregate, from 20,000 to 25,000 persons; besides all these, there were in the city of New Orleans alone, fed by the subsistence department as above:

For ten days in December, 1862-11,006 families,

continually, at a cost of......................... $14,857.70

For the month of January, 1863-10,082 families,

continually, at a cost of......................... 49,141.29

For the month of February, 1863-10,805 families,

continually, at a cost of......................... 39,041.67

For the month of March, 1863-8,972 families,

continually, at a cost of......................... 39,758.59

For the month of April, 1863-7,009 families,

continually, at a cost of......................... 27,678.04

For the month of May, 1863-7,448 families,

continually, at a cost of......................... 41,409.40

For the month of May, 1863-7.620 families,

continually, at a cost of......................... 28,959.99

For the month of July, 1863-7,737 families,

continually, at a cost of......................... 35,953.57

For the month of August, 1863-7,822 families,

continually, at a cost of......................... 37,436.42

For the month of September, 1863-5,600 families,

continually, at a cost of......................... 30,005.31

Report of October 17, 1863, for October-5,917

families, and the cost will be at least........... 30,000.00

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Total cost for ten and a half months.............. 374,241.98