directing me to forward a copy of any official correspondence I may have had with His Excellency Governor Smith, of Rhode Island, in reference to the enlistment and raising of troops in the State of Rhode Island.
I would respectfully state that I have not had, at any time, any correspondence with His Excellency the Governor of Rhode Island upon this particular subject, because nothing has arisen which would make any such correspondence necessary. I infer, however, that the Provost-Marshal-General refers to a correspondence which passed between His Excellency Governor Smith and myself some month or two ago upon another matter. This correspondence I have the honor to forward-the letters of His Excellency the Governor in original and copies of my replies.
I have also the honor to forward a letter to the Provost-Marshal- General which I wrote before I received the final communication of His Excellency, in which he is pleased to say that my third communication has relieved him from the unpleasant necessity of forwarding my letters to the Honorable Secretary of War. This letter covers the ground of the case, and is, I trust, sufficient explanatory.
I have the honor to be, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Lieutenant Colonel 13th V. R. C., Actg. Asst. Prov. March General
February 3, 1865.
A true copy.
N. L. JEFFRIES,
Colonel, Veteran Reserve Corps.
STATE OF RHODE ISLAND,
OFFICE ACTG. ASST. PROVOST-MARSHAL-GENERAL,
Providence, December 26, 1864.
Brigadier General JAMES B. FRY,
Provost-Marshal-General, Washington, D. C.:
GENERAL: I have the honor to forward, for the information of the Provost-Marshal-General, the inclosed letters of His Excellency the Honorable James Y. Smith, Governor of Rhode Island, and one from Colonel Bailey, his aide-de-camp or military secretary.
I would respectfully say that since my assumption of the duties of acting assistant provost-marshal-general of this State it has always been my endeavor to conduct my communications and official business with the Governor in as conciliatory a manner as possible, with a view to prevent any differences of opinion and of action which would or might result prejudicially to the interest of the service.
Sometimes I have done this at what I considered a sacrifice of some degree of personal and official dignity.
Instead of being able to conduct my business with the adjutant- general of the State in all matters relating to credits and the enlistment of volunteers, I am compelled to transact all business with the Executive department of the State government. The adjutant-general is ignored entirely by His Excellency, and the actual correspondence relating to my official duties is assumed by His Excellency himself or by his personal aide, Colonel Bailey. In all matters of detail I am compelled to transact all my business with Colonel Bailey.