War of the Rebellion: Serial 128 Page 0169 CONFEDERATE AUTHORITIES.

Search Civil War Official Records

JACKSON, November 3, 1862.

Lieut. Gen. J. C. PEMBERTON,

Headquarters, Jackson, Miss.:

SIR: I have learned to my utter surprise that the cargoes of the schooners Marquez and Confidence have been released by other than military authority and sold by the owner, who has received his money. I also learn that parties claiming to be Government officers have granted written permits and made agreements with parties to trade between our lines and New Orleans, and some of the vessels lately seized have been acting under that authority. Without assuming to judge whether or not these clearly unlawful acts were justified by the exigencies of the case, it is quite clear that parties have assumed powers and authority which should only have been exercised by the commanding gnd this to be the cause of great complaint among our best citizens. In order to ascertain the legal status of these seizures I have consulted Hon. W. P. Harris and Colonel D. C. Glenn, distinguished lawyers and prominent citizens of Mississippi. They are clear on all these points, viz: All vessels trading under enemy's license or bringing cargoes from ports of enemy are liable to capture generally, even after they enter our ports; the goods and vessels liable to condemnation as prize of war; neutrals not exempt if concerned in bringing cargoes from enemy's ports. Confederate vessels owned by citizens are liable to capture. The fact that they came from enemy's port with goods sufficient to justify.

I leave for Camp Moore this morning, and leave this for your consideration until a further investigation will enable me to make an official report. It does seem to me that to more effectually correct and develop the knowledge of many irregularities in this department you will have to reorganize with officers of your own selection. ;

Very respectfully,

F. H. HATCH.

CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA, WAR DEPARTMENT,

Richmond, November 5, 1862.

Colonel L. B. NORTHROP,

Commissary-General:

SIR: In reply to letter of 3d instant, you are respectfully informed that the Department is now engaged in selecting a superintendent of railroad transportation to whose supervision questions of the kind presented by you will be committed.

Your obedient servant,

GEO. W. RANDOLPH,

Secretary of War.

HEADQUARTERS CAMP OF INSTRUCTION,

Decatur, Ga., November 6, 1862.

Hon. GEORGE W. RANDOLPH,

Secretary of War, Richmond:

SIR: I have the honor to transmit herewith a copy of a communication received from the adjutant and inspector general of this State, and also a copy of my reply to the same. Having seen the order of General Cooper, as published in the papers of Richmond and generally