War of the Rebellion: Serial 126 Page 0961 UNION AUTHORITIES.

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ROLLING-MILL.

Almost immediately on your arrival at Chattanooga in January, 1864, and even before the railroads in the Military Division of the Mississippi were formally placed in your charge, you advised the building of a Government rolling-mill at that point for the purpose of rerolling the large amount of old and damaged rails that would necessarily come into our possession if the contemplated military movements in that quarter should prove successful. General Grant, appreciating the importance of having an abundant supply of railroad iron, gave his order on the 17th of February for the mill to be built. Steps were at once taken to prepare the necessary materials, all of which were gotten out and the work on the building done by the Construction Corps. The mill was completed and went into operation about the last of March, 1865, which was as soon as the necessary machinery could be manufactured and transported from the North and set up at the works. The following is a statement of the total cost of the mill and buildings connected therewith, together with the railroad leading to it from the Nashville and Chattanooga Railroad. This statement gives the cost of all labor, but it is proper to say that much of this is not strictly chargeable to this work. We were compelled to keep a large force of mechanics and laborers on hand all the time so as to be prepared for any emergency that might arise, and it was only at times when this whole force was not required on the more important work of constructing and maintaining the many railroad lines in and coming into our possession that a portion of the force was detailed for work on the rolling-mill. Actually, the labor on the mill cost the Government nothing.

Cost of rolling-mill building, including engine and boiler house, coal-bin, trestle, tanks, wells, &c.

MATERIAL AND LABOR.

Main building, engine and boiler house, 198,500 feet lumber, B. M., at $30................................................. $5,955.00

253,000 shingles, at $7................................ 1,771.00

87 kegs nails, at $10.................................. 870.00

6 tons of strap bolts and suspension rods.............. 900.00

200,000 bricks, at $16................................. 3,200.00

2,500 bushels lime, at 40 cents........................ 1,000.00

Glass and painting..................................... 500.00

Hauling stone, masonry, and blacksmithing.............. 6,000.00

Labor - hauling timber, framing, raising, &c., from April 1, 1864, to April 1, 1865....................................... 39,957.00

Coal-bin, including trestle-work, 75,000 feet lumber, B. M., at $30.................................................... 2,250.00

Labor on coal-bin, including bolts and spikes.......... 4,915.00

Excavation of well, including cost of powder........... 7,430.00

Walling well, tank frame, &c........................... 700.00

Building furnaces and stacks, setting up machinery, &c., including superintendence, to March 31, 1865, as per report of Mr. Yardley................................................ 40,905.81

18,000 rations, at 50 cents............................ 9,000.00

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125,857.81

Cost of machinery.

Mr. Yardley's estimate of machinery....................$100,000.00

Add 20 per cent. for transportation.................... 20,000.00

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120,000.00

61 R R - SERIES III, VOL V