War of the Rebellion: Serial 128 Page 0305 CONFEDERATE AUTHORITIES.

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to the Quartermaster's Department, to which it properly belonged, because it is a duty especially devolved upon it by the Regulations, as will be perceived by a reference, under the head of "Army Transportation," to paragraphs 985 to 996, inclusive.

This order further charges the Quartermasters' Department with "the safe and speedy delivery" of these stores, and makes it responsible for the same, although by the terms of the previous order (No. 98) the control of all railroad transportation and the agents and employees connected with it had been transferred to an officer unconnected with this department and in no sense responsible to it.

As stated in my former letter, all payments for railroad transportation are provided for in the estimates of the Quartermaster's Department, and all accounts therefor are audited and paid by it while the power of contracting with the railroad companies and fixing the schedules of their compensation belongs to an officer who is not required even to inform the department of the terms of the contracts he may make. It seems evident that with this divided control over the same subject unity is scarcely attainable. I beg leave to observe further that by the Regulations all officers charged with the disbursement of money or the custody of public property in connection with military transportation are held responsible for the same, and required to give "good and sufficient bonds fully to account" therefor. To change the system of official responsibility and accountability prescribed by the Regulations involves a policy as to the property of which grave be entertained.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,




Richmond, January 8, 1863.

SIR: Your attention is called to the great necessity which now exists for strenuous exertions in securing men to fill up the commands of the Army within a reasonable time. You are therefore desired to detail from your command such suitable officers and men as can be spared to proceed at once to those sections of the country in which their regiments were raised, for the purpose of gathering conscripts and conducting them to their commands, without passing them through camps of instructions in the ordinary manner.

Every encouragement will be offered by the officer thus detailed consistent with the law and the regulations of the service, and by kind treatment and arguments addressed to the patriotism and sense of duty of citizens to induce them to enter the service of their country. Such persons as are liable to conscription will be allowed to join any particular company and regiment requiring recruits in the command in which the officer may be serving. In like manner such persons as are within the conscript age and may come forward and offer themselves for service will be allowed to volunteer, and will receive all the benefits which are secured by law to volunteers. Recruits thus obtained, however, must in all cases enter companies already in service, and cannot be organized into new companies and regiments.

The officers and men detailed by this authority will be governed, generally, by the acts of conscription and exemption and the regulations in connection therewith, published in General Orders, No. 82, of