War of the Rebellion: Serial 128 Page 0098 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.

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officers. We cannot hope to rival the enemy in numbers, and unless we can surpass him in organization and discipline the odds against us will be fearfully great. The vast amount of stragglers which now paralyze our Army and defeat all attempts to re-enforce it is mainly due to the inefficiency of the regimental and company officers. Unless we apply a speedy remedy great disasters to our arms may be expected, and therefore, at the risk of being deemed importunate, I must earnestly beg that power of appointment on the President in necessary cases may be passed through Congress if possible.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

GEO. W. RANDOLPH,

Secretary of War.

GENERAL ORDERS,

ADJT. AND INSP. GENERAL'S OFFICE, No. 72.

Richmond, September 29, 1862.

I. The President having approved an act of Congress requiring the Secretary of War "to transfer any private or non-commissioned officer who may be in a regiment from a State of this Confederacy other than his own to a regiment from his own State, whenever such private or non-commissioned officer may apply for such transfer, and whenever such transfer can be made without injury to the public service, and that the Secretary of War shall make regulations to facilitate such transfer, provided that this act shall not apply to any person who has enlisted as a substitute," it is ordered that all such applications for transfers as are contemplated by the foregoing act shall be addressed to the general commanding the army in which the applicant is serving, and shall be granted by him, without reference to the War Department, whether the transfer is within his own military department or not, provided the written consent of the commandant of the company to which the transfer is sought to be made shall first be given, and the transfer can be made without injury to the public service. I an all cases in which the commanding general shall think proper to refuse such application he shall indorse the reasons for such refusal of forward the application to the Department.

II. Paragraph II, General Orders, No. 31, current series; paragraph IX, General Orders, No. 38, current series, and clause 3, paragraph I, General Orders, No. 58, current series, are hereby revoked.

III. The ration issued to hospitals will not hereafter be subject to the reduction authorized April 28, 1862, but will remain as prescribed by paragraph 1107, General Regulations.

IV. For the prompt relief of the sick and wounded of posts and generals hospitals, not including those in the city of Richmond, it is ordered:

1. That the commandant of the post shall cause to be established a board, a consist of two or more medical officers at each post or general hospital, for the examination of all soldiers who may be considered fit subjects for furlough or discharge.

2. That in the absence of any regularly appointed officer the senior surgeon of the post or general hospital will act as commandant of the post.

3. That a certificate of disability, with a recommendation for furlough, signed in due form by trd and approved by the senior surgeon of the post, shall entitle the soldier to furlough, to be granted by the commandant of the post.