War of the Rebellion: Serial 126 Page 0634 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.

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duty, had secured exemption by paying $300 each, making a total of $15,686,400, which the law required should be used in procuring substitutes. The method of employing this money for this purpose was such as to provide men at the earliest practicable day.

The object being, as under the draft, to procure recruits (substitutes) for the ranks of the organizations then in the field, detailed instructions were issued as soon as the business connected with the draft permitted in any district for the payment of various bounties, reward, and premiums.

In addition to these inducements the spur of an impending draft, made effective by the remembrance of its enforcement during the past summer, was deemed necessary to stimulate recruiting. Accordingly, on the 17th of October the President issued a proclamation, as follows:*

The 5th of January was fixed as the day of draft in order to give Congress time to amend the enrollment act. The plan referred to above had essentially but two objects: First, to offer a large bounty to the man presenting himself as a recruit, this bounty being divided into installments and distributed through the period of his enlistment; second, to secure the services of active and reliable men as recruiting agents, who, liberally remunerated by the premium allowed for each man they presented, would devote themselves wholly to the business, be under the control of the Government, and held responsible for their behavior.

A dread of the draft on the part of some, and a commendable pride in having their localities escape compulsory service on the part of others, resulted in defeating these two main objects. To fill their respective quotas and avoid the draft, towns, counties, and States offered bounties and premiums so greatly in excess of those offered by the Government as to make the latter of inappreciable effect, especially as the local bounties were generally paid in full at the time of enlistment.

In the anxiety of towns and lations and wholesome restraints upon fraud and abuse were, in some instances, pronounced by the public to be unnecessary and vexations obstacles to success in recruiting, and were consequently defeated or disregarded.

Such was the case in relation to the rule requiring that recruiting agents should be limited in number and under the control of and responsible to the Government, and should have the monopoly of the business. It was urged upon the Bureau that the interest of the people in raising men was destroyed or restrained by a rule which permitted only certain authorized agents to receive premiums for presenting recruits and prevented the people at large from doing so. As the amount of local bounties and premiums (or "hand money," as it was termed) increased, and the pecuniary inducements to volunteering officered by the Government became more insignificant in comparison with those provided by the States and subordinate localities, and as the impending and dreaded draft could only be avoided by the action of the people in procuring volunteers, it seemed best to conform to the popular demand and remove the restriction as to recruiting agents.

The opportunities for fraud and gain in connection with the increase of local bounties grew rapidly, and with the business open

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*See General Orders, Numbers 340, Adjutant-General's Office, October 19, 1863, Vol. III, this series, p. 892.

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