Secretary of War in relation to orders issued by me with reference to the recruiting of colored troops is Missouri, with the indorsement of Brigadier General E. R. S. Canby thereon.*
In accordance with the wishes of the Department I have issued an order revoking my Order Numbers 8, dated Vicksburg, March 11, 1864.
The system of recruiting in Missouri upon the basis adopted by Major-General Schofield has not, in my opinion, operated as successfully as under the orders issued by me. This was manifest in my recent inspection of the colored troops at Port Hudson. The Second and Third Missouri Regiments, raised by provost-marshals, report a vast increase over the First Missouri Regiment in the number of discharges on account of disability, and the mortality has been much greater in those regiments. Altogether, I am satisfied the men in those regiments are much inferior to those raised under my directions.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
ORDERS Numbers 17.] NATCHEZ, MISS., April 26, 1864.
I. So much of Orders Nos. 7 and 16, current series, as designates the regiments of African troops as U. S. cavalry, artillery, or infantry (colored) is changed. Hereafter they will be called regiments of U. S. colored cavalry, colored artillery, or colored infantry.
All the regiments enumerated in the above-named orders will retain their numbers given therein except the heavy and light artillery, which will hereafter be reported as regiments of U. S. colored artillery (heavy), or U. S. colored artillery (light), and will be numbered as follows:
Batteries A, B, C, and D, Second Regiment U. S. Light Artillery (Colored) as Batteries C. D. E. and F, Second Regiment U. S. Colored Artillery (Light).
The Second Regiment U. S. Colored Artillery (Heavy) a the Third Regiment.
The Third Regiment U. S. Colored Artillery (Heavy) as the Fourth Regiment.
The Fourth Regiment U. S. Colored Artillery (Heavy) as the Fifth Regiment.
The Fifth Regiment U. S. Colored Artillery (Heavy) as the Sixth Regiment.
The Sixth Regiment U. S. Artillery (Heavy) as the Seventh Regiment.
The Seventh Regiment U. S. Colored Artillery (Heavy), now being raised at Paducah, Ky., as the Eighth Regiment.
The commanders of colored troops will at once make the proper notifications of the changes in the designation of these regiments.
II. Orders Numbers 8, dated Vicksburg, Miss., March 11, 1864, are hereby revoked.
By order of the Secretary of War:
* See March 23, p. 196.