War of the Rebellion: Serial 127 Page 1055 CONFEDERATE AUTHORITIES.

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for the delivery of niter produced within the limits of the Confederate States; to inspect the niter caves and other natural deposits of nitriferous earth, and to report the probable annual supply from these sources, and the extent and economy, or otherwise, with which they are now being worked by private enterprise; to establish niter beds in the vicinity of the principal cities and towns of the Confederacy, and to contract for the necessary grounds, sheds, &c., and for the offal and other materials used in the preparation of niter beds; to diffuse information and to stimulate enterprise in the production of an article essential to the successful prosecution of the war. The superintendent will make reports, at stated periods, to the Chief of Ordnance, to be submitted to the Secretary of War, for the information of Congress. This organization to be continued at the discretion of the President.

Approved April 11, 1862.

JOINT RESOLUTION of thanks to be patriotic women of the count contributions furnished by them to the Army.

Resolved by the Congress of the Confederate States of America, That the thanks of the Congress of the Confederate States are eminently due, and are hereby tendered, to the patriotic women of the Confederacy for the energy, zeal, and untiring devotion which they have manifested in furnishing voluntary contributions to our soldiers in the field and in the various military hospitals throughout the country.

Approved April 11, 1862.

CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA, WAR DEPARTMENT,

Richmond, April 11, 1862.

His Excellency JEFFERSON DAVIS,

President Confederate States of America:

SIR: In response to the resolution of the House of Representatives requesting the President to communicate what steps have been taken to carry out the act for connecting the Richmond and Danville and the North Carolina railroads, and for the connection of the railroad from Selma, in Alabama, to Meridian, in Mississippi, I have the honor to inform Your Excellency that the surveys of the former have been made and the report of the engineer will probably be received to-morrow, and that an agent has been sent south to examine and report what steps should be taken to complete the latter connection.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

GEO. W. RANDOLPH,

Secretary of War.

CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA, WAR DEPARTMENT,

Richmond, April 11, 1862.

Captain JOHN N. MAFFITT, C. S. Navy:

SIR: You are authorized to take the entire control of all vessels loaded with arms and munitions of war for the Confederate States which you may meet in your intended trip, and to bring them into such ports as you may select with their cargoes, or to transship such cargoes in other vessels. You will in all cases destroy such arms and