Whereas, by the acts and means aforesaid, war exists between the Confederate States and the Government of the United States and the States and Territories thereof, except the States of Maryland, North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas, Missouri, and Delaware, and the Territories of Arizona and New Mexico, and the Indian Territory south of Kansas: Therefore,
SECTION 1. The Congress of the Confederate States of America do enact, That the President of the Confederate States is hereby authorized to use the whole land and naval force of the Confederate States to meet the war thus commenced, and to issue to private armed vessels commissions of letters of marque and general reprisal in such form as he shall think proper, under the seal of the Confederate States, against the vessels, goods, and effects of the Government of the United States, and of the citizens or inhabitants of the States and Territories thereof, except the States and Territories hereinbefore named: provided, however, That property of the enemy (unless it be contraband of war) laden of board a neutral vessel shall not be subject to seizure under this act: And provided further, That vessels of the citizens or inhabitants of the United States now in the ports of the Confederate States, except such as have been since the 5th of April last, or may hereafter be, in the service of the Government of the United States, shall be allowed thirty days after the publication of this act to leave said ports and reach their destination, and such vessels and their cargoes, excepting articles contraband off war, shall not be subject to capture under this act during said period unless they shall have previously reached the destination for which they were bound on leaving said ports.
SEC. 2. That thhe Confederate States shall be, and he is hereby, authorized and empowered to revoke and annual at please all letters of marque and reprisal which he may at any time grant pursuant to this act.
SEC. 3. That all persons applying for letters of marque and reprisal, pursuant to this act, shall state in writing the name and a suitable description of the tonnage and force of the vessel, and the name and place of residence of each owner concerned therein and the intended number of the crew, which statement shall be signed by the person or persons making such application and filed with the Secretary of State, or shall be delivered to any other officer or person who shall be employed to deliver out such commissions, to be by him transmitted to the Secretary of State.
SEC. 4. That before any commission or letters of marque and reprisal shall be issued as aforesaid, the owner or owners of the ship or vessel for which the same shall be requested, and the commander thereof for the time being, shall give bond to the Confederate States, with at least two responsible sureties not interested in such vessel, in the penal sum of $5,000, or if such vessel be provided with more than 150 men, then in the penal sum of $10,000, with condition that the owners, officers, and crew who shall be employed on board such commissioned vessel shall and will observe the laws of the Confederate States and the instructions which shall be given them according to law for the regulation of their conduct, and will satisfy all damages and injuries which shall be done or committed contrary to the tenor thereof by such vessels during her commission, and to deliver up the same when revoked by the President of the Confederate States.
SEC. 5. That all captures and prizes of vessels and property shall be forfeited and shall accrue to the owners, officers, and crews of the