looked to the receipt and immediate expenditure of it under the direction of the Secretary of War. The act says:
Any person drafted and notified to appear, as aforesaid, may, on or before the day fixed for his appearance, furnish an acceptable substitute to take his place in the draft; or he may pay to such person as the Secretary of War may authorize to receive in such sum, not exceeding $300, as the Secretary may determine for the procreation of such substitutes.
The terms and intention of the act seem to me to be that the money should be received and immediately disbursed under the orders of the Secretary of War. In accordance with this view a part of the fund has been dising substitutes, and statements to the Secretary of the Treasury.
The labor of my office will be much reduced by transferring the money to the Treasury Department, and my only wish is that it may not be diverted from the "procuration of substitutes" (recruits), for which it has already been pledged by this Bureau.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAMES B. FRY,
WAR DEPT., PROVOST-MARSHAL-GENERAL'S OFFICE, Washington, D. C., December 15, 1863.
Honorable EDWIN M. STANTON,
Secretary of War:
SIR: The following extract from the report of the Secretary of the Treasury gives, I think, an erroneous impression on the subject of commutation money arising from the draft:
The important and responsible duty of securing and keeping, under the direction of the President and War Department, commutation money from drafted citizens has been assumed by the collectors of internal revenue at the instance of the Secretary of War.
In the judgment of the Secretary of the Treasury this money should be paid directly into the Treasury and drawn out upon requisitions for the purposes to which it is appropriated by Congress. The Secretary of War thought, however, that the other mode of collection and disbursements would be less burdensome to drafted men and more convenient for the payment of substitutes. His wishes were promptly complied with and the whole matter is now submitted to Congress.
The money is received by collectors of internal revenue, but the "important and responsible duty of securing and keeping" it has not been imposed upon them. On the contrary they are not permitted to keep it any longer than is absolutely necessary. It is deposited to my credit and kept in the designated depositories of the U. S. Treasury Department, and is regularly and officially reported to the Secretary of the Treasury, and after deposit is in no manner under the control of collectors of internal revenue. "In the judgment of the Secretary of the Treasury this money should be paid directly into the Treasury and drawn out upon requisition for the purposes to which it was appropriated by Congress." It passes now as directly as possible into the custody of the officers of the Treasury Department and is drawn out by check as money is required to procure recruits ('substitutes"). In the interview had between the Secretary of the Treasury and yourself to arrange for the receipt and deposit of this fund before it commeSecretary of the Treasury to say that if the money passed directly into the Treasury it could not be drawn out without further legislation, and to obviate this difficulty and carry out the intention of Congress,