framed in the shops of the company at Tallahassee, transported to the Suwannee River, and put up without delay. In relation to the time of completion I would further say that, cut off as we are by the blockade from the possibility of getting iron from Savannah to Fernandina by water, that portion of the connection in the State of Georgia would have to be laid first, thus giving us an abundance of time to prepare our portion of the work and even to bed the cross-ties. The amount of iron required to lay our portion of the road would be about 1,500 to 1,600 tons at seventy tons per mile. This could be laid, if required, in one month. The preparation of the road bed for the iron will about exhaust the now crippled resources of the company, cut off as they are by the blockade from their usual revenue from the transportation of cotton to the coast. Upon the military necessity of the work where can be no difference of opinion. Its point of divergence from our system of roads is nearly midway between the Apalachicola and Fernandina, on the Atlantic Coast, making both east and west equally accessible by rail, and giving us a direct communication with Savannah and all the Northern routes from which Florida has heretofore been cut off. In point of economy I believe it will also be advantageous to the Confederacy. As things are now, a line of wagons will have to be established by Government between the nearest point on the Savannah, Albany and Gulf Railroad and Monticello, in this State, a distance of about twenty miles, and although the first outlay will not be so great, still in the end the balance will undoubtedly be in favor of ironing the Georgia connection. In conveying troops to a threatened point on the coast the railroad might save millions, while the delay in marching twenty miles across the border would be disastrous. I therefore think in petitioning Government for aid in this matter you are only doing the Confederate cause justice in the State of Florida in forwarding the railroad interests of which State you have already done so much. With the hope that the petition may be successful I respectfully submit the above.
C. H. LATROBE,
Act of the General Assembly of South Carolina.
AN ACT to amend and suspend certain portions of the militia and patrol laws of this State.
I. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives, now met and sitting in General Assembly, and by the authority of the same, That all free white malees of sixteen and sixty shall be liable to perform ordinary military duty during the existence of the war between the Confederate States and the United States of America, except the persons exempt from all militia service.
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Passed December 7, 1861.
[DECEMBER 9, 1861. -For Milton to Davis, in relation to military affairs in Florida, see Series I, VOL. VI, p. 341.]