VOLUNTEERING--THE MANNER OF PROCURING RECRUITS.
Various means were resorted to when the different calls were announced to encourage recruiting. Large posters, setting forth the inducements offered to enter the service, were displayed throughout the district, and patriotic appeals were made through the columns of the newspapers.
Letters were written to prominent citizens urging them to give the matter their attention.
Deputies and special agents were sent among the people to exhort them to renewed efforts. But the most effective mode of recruiting was the announcement of the call for troops and the assignment of the quotas to the respective sub-districts, followed with a notice that unless the quota was raised by volunteering a draft would be made.
This being done, in most instances draft committees were formed in each of the sub-districts, a local bounty offered, and the business of furnishing substitutes prior to draft and procuring recruits to the credit of the respective sub-districts was pushed forward with spirit and energy for the purpose of filling the quotas of the sub-districts so as to avoid the draft.
The experience of this office shows conclusively that bounties paid in hand at the time the recruit entered the service operated as the greatest stimulant to volunteering. But I would here state that it is all important to the service that men should be restrained from deserting by making bounties payable in installments, one installment payable at the termination of the term of service.
The premium of $25 and $15 paid to any person who would present an acceptable recruit, which was authorized by circular letter dated War Department, Adjutant-General's Office, October 24, 1863, was, in my judgment, a judicious arrangement.
These premiums afforded to persons a fair compensation for services rendered, and energetic men were induced to engage in procuring recruits.
I would respectfully state that in the spring of 1864 recruiting was successfully prosecuted in this district by this means.
It has also been found advantageous to recruiting to send recruiting parties into the district when a draft is pending.
These parties formed a nucleus, and by the co-operation of those who were liable to draft they were enabled to recruit successfully.
THE MANNER OF EXAMINING RECRUITS.
The Board of Enrollment was guided in the examination of recruits by the regulations for the recruiting service.
It was found necessary, however, from circumstances, developed by the progress of the war to exercise the greatest amount of caution and throw every safeguard it was possible around this branch of the service in order to prevent improper and fraudulent enlistments.
To this end it was to practice of the Board of Enrollment when the recruit was presented to put him on oath and subject him to a close examination, with the view of learning his history before having him stripped for a medical examination.
If the man proved to be acceptable in all other respects, he was then stripped, and the examining surgeon gave him a most careful medical examination, in the presence of the Board of Enrollment only, in the daytime, in a large and well-lighted room, where he was required