respecting their duties, more especially those relating to the police of camps, and to insist that proper hygienic regulations be rigidly enforced. It is believed that the suggestions of the medical directors have not been acted on in very many instances, or, if they have, the effort was of a spasmodic character, and soon ceased, and thus much opprobrium cast on the Medical Department which it does not deserve. This neglect of duty is not with the department, but rests with those officers of the regiments who have failed to carry out and adopt the proper measures and suggestions to insure the health of the troops. The Adjutant-General was requested September 1, from this office, to issue to the generals in the field and order to enforce rigid rules of police in their camps, in the hope of diminishing the sickness then so prevalent; and it is now respectfully suggested to the War Department that orders be published to the different commanding generals that cleanliness of the men should be attended to. Daily ablutions should never be omitted, especially of face, neck, chest, and arms. Bathing should be used whenever the opportunity permits.
Much attention should be paid to the food of the soldier, and to effect this desirable end each company should have a proper mess, and the men of the company not permitted to form messes of from four to six men, as by the latter process the food is not well cooked, which is of essential importance. It is the duty of the surgeon of a regiment to insist that these hygienic rules be enforced, and captains of companies should attend to the comforts of the men. It was suggested to the late Secretary War that biscuit or hard bread should from the common article of diet in camp life, as it is easily preserved, and that, if possible, fresh bread should be furnished the troops. When straw or hay is used for bedding it should be renewed as frequently as possible. The straw should be well beaten and thoroughly aired every day. Great cleanliness should be maintained in and around the tents, and these should be struck every three of four days for the purpose of purification. This will go far to preserve the health and efficiency of the command. All garbage should be daily removed, and sinks established and the men of the command be compelled to use them. A camp, whenever possible, should be removed to a new situation, and at a convenient distance, so as to obviate the poisonous emancipations produced by the prolonged sojourn of a large number of men and animals. To insure the carrying out of these instructions the inspecting generals of armies should make frequent and rigid inspections, and allpromptly reported to the Adjutant-General.
The attention of the War Department is likewise called to the sending from Manassas of 400, 500, and 600 sick men by one train of cars. Under such circumstances it is impossible to give the proper care and attention to so large a number of invalids. The number of sick men should not exceed 100 at a time, except in extraordinary cases. In some instances, instead of sending the given number of sick men, as the medical officer who was to receive them was induced to believe would be sent him, the number was largely increased, which necessarily produced much annoyance and distress both to the medical attendant and his patients. The medical director at Manassas, having been directed to prevent, if possible, the occurrence of this evil, reports that by means of a guard this will in future not occur.
In conclusion, I would state that while there has perhaps been much sickness which could have been avoided, yet the experience of all military life shows that new troops, whether regulars or volunteers,