SPRINGFIELD, ILL., January 25, 1864.
Hon. E. M. STANTON,
Secretary of War:
On the 8th instant my adjutant-general, by my order, telegraphed Colonel Fry, Provost-Marshal-General, inquiring if 145,100 three- years" men was the total calls made on this State, to which no satisfactory reply has been received. On the 14th [15th] instant I telegraphed to you requesting that our veteran regiments be recruited and reorganized under my orders, which I fear has been overlooked. I respectfully insist I am entitled to definite and specific answers to these dispatches.
Governor of Illinois.
WAR DEPARTMENT, ADJUTANT-GENERAL'S OFFICE, Washington, D. C., January 25, 1864.
Brigadier General WILLIAM BIRNEY, U. S. Volunteers,
Mustering and Recruiting Officer for Colored Troops, Bryantown, Md.:
GENERAL: I am instructed to say that you are hereby authorized and directed to recruit and muster into service another colored regiment in the State of Maryland. The regiment will be mustered into service for three years or during the war, and will be known and designated as the Thirtieth Regiment U. S. Colored Troops.
I have the honor to be, &c.,
C. W. FOSTER,
EXECUTIVE MANSION, Washington, January 25, 1864.
The oath in the proclamation may be administered by the Military Governor, the military commander of the department, and by all persons designated by them for that purpose. Loyal as well as disloyal should take the oath, because it does not hurt them, clears all question as to the right to vote, and swells the aggregate number who take it, which is an important object.* This is the President's reply to your questions of the 14th. I intend to start for Nashville in the morning. Will go directly through, stopping a few hours in Cincinnati, where a dispatch will reach me.
WAR DEPT., ADJUTANT-GENERAL'S OFFICE, No. 11.
Washington, January 26, 1864.
The following instructions from the Secretary of War are furnished for your information and guidance:
The authority heretofore given to military commanders to order the discharge of enlisted men for disability is hereby revoked, and hereafter all discharges of regulars (except rejected recruits, whose cases
*To this point the original is in the handwriting of President Lincoln.