War of the Rebellion: Serial 125 Page 1147 UNION AUTHORITIES.

Search Civil War Official Records

furnished by each district was to be determined by these enrollments; that is, as the number enrolled in any one district was to the whole number enrolled in the United States, should be its quota to the whole number of men to be raised.

It was not contemplated that this enrollment should be confined to men liable to duty, as is sions of the act. True, in drafting the drafts were to be made from these rolls, but the draft was to be for one and a half the number required, and a board was constituted to determine who of those drafted were liable to service, clearly showing that it was expected that men not liable to duty, as well as those that were, should be included. It was merely a census of the men between the ages of twenty and forty-five, upon which the quotas of men for service were to be obtained. Other methods of distributing quotas were suggested in Congress, such as the whole population; enough for my purpose now that the method established by Congress was as I have stated it, and unless there should be more in one district than another laboring under physical infirmity, alienage, or other disqualifying qualities, then the law was agreeable. In pursuance of this provision of law enrollments were made, or at least ordered by you. I have reason to believe that enrolling officers and provost-marshals often neglected or mistook their instructions and left out of the enrollment the manifestly halt, blind, and lame, or the alien, under the impression that the only object of the enrollment was to get men from whom to draft, and losing sight of its being a basis of quotas. Be that as it may, after the first enrollment had been made under instructions exactly conformable to law, and an assignment of quotas thereon by calculations that have never been called in question, the Governor of this State in behalf of the inhabitants of this city and some other districts, earnestly protested against injustice, and assuring the President and Secretary of War as well as yourself that so glaring was the injustice done these districts that it would be impossible to enforce the draft. The Government- not you specially, as I understand it-yielded to these importunities and abandoned the enrollment for these districts and based their quota upon some other calculation or some corrected enrollment not provided for by law, and from this departure from the strict letter of the law has arisen, I think, nearly all the irregularities in your Bureau, for which, if my information is correct, you are not responsible-certainly not alone responsible-and for which the citizens of New York ought to be the last persons to complain.

I am not discussing the question of whether the method for ascertaining quotas fixed by Congress operated unfairly on New York or not, or whether the enrollment made under your orders was faithfully made. it may be that New York contained a greater portions of the country, and thus the legal method or assigning quotas was unfair toward this city. But for this Congress, not you, should be blamed. Or it may be that the enrolling officers were not faithful in the discharge of their duty. But they are appointed from the districts, and upon the recommendations of members of Congress or citizens of the district, and you can hardly be responsible for their shortcomings.

The law of February, 1864, provided for some amendments of the enrollments made under the original act, and I contend that there