of if at the maximum, about 12,000 men. This division could have permanently its quartermaster's supply, ammunition, and ambulance train, and its pontoon train. The headquarters, both of brigade and division, should be permanent, and located within the geographical limits in which its command was raised, which might form military geographical departments. When it should be necessary to bring divisions together to form an army they would be at once in effective condition and as many divisions as may be would then make an army for a given purpose. It will be seen by these means that the staff departments at Washington would be responsible for nothing but the food, ammunition, and transportation of the forces in the field. By this arrangement, also, camps of paroled prisoners might be entirely avoided, because prisoners on parole could be sent to the home of their regiment. This, also, will abolish that organization which I believe the best judgment of military men has found not adapted to the wants of our country, to wit, army corps, which indeed now are scarcely larger than the divisions herein contemplated. To effect the proposed organization now with the armies in the field it might be best to ascertain the effective strength of each regiment in each State, and to consolidate them into the effective battalions according to districts, and filling up the home battalions at once by tment, according to the military district from which the consolidated regiment come.
I have thus, my dear general, sketched to you very imperfectly and crudely my idea of organization of the Army to render it most effective. That I have omitted much of detail, and that there are many imperfections in the system proposed which would require elaboration, cannot fail to be seen. I have not dealt with the general staff organization of the Army or the general officers and their staffs, which much need reorganizing, because these require separate consideration. I have been obliged, for want of timese observations to a phonographic writer, which of itself entails many faults of style,and arrangement, but if I have succeeded in calling attention to some method of remedying the present state of things, which leaves our Army so shorn of efficiency which the bravery of its troops and the gallantry of its officers would under proper organization give to it, I have not spent the hour devoted to this letter in vain. That something must be done is most clear, and my suggestions may at least have the effect of evoking some better scheme.
Very truly, yours,
BENJ. F. BUTLER,
WAR DEPT., PROV. March GENERAL'S OFFICE, Numbers 41.
Washington, D. C., December 8, 1864.
Reliable information has been received that a large number of evil-disposed persons, consisting of rebel sympathizers, secessionists, marauders, and other outlaws, who have collected in Canada with a view to enter the commercial cities of the North, and particularly those on the Canadian frontier, with the ostensible purpose of seeking employment, but who are, in reality, intent upon the destruction of life and property, will shortly arrive in the United States.
All officers of this Bureau are instructed to place all persons suspected to be of this class under strict surveillance, and to arrest such as evidently belong to it.