War of the Rebellion: Serial 128 Page 0412 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.

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extensively prevailing on the part of some subordinate enrolling officers in the State; and I have felt the honor of the State as well as the public interest to be concerned in this correction.

Earnestly inviting the assistance and suggestions of the honorable Representatives from North Carolina in this matter, and repeating that I am ready to act at once on any suggestion compatible with the orders I have received, but not at liberty in the meantime to abandon the practical control of the conscription in that State, which it is essential should be supervised by a commandant for the State at large of sufficient rank to exercise command,

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


Brigadier-General and Superintendent.


Richmond, February 27, 1863.

J. B. JONES, Esq.,

Conscript Bureau:

SIR: The President has referred your letter of the 19th instant to this Department. In reply you are respectfully informed that it is not deemed judicious, unless in the last extremity, to resort to the means of supply suggested. The patriotic motives that dictated the suggestion are, however, appreciated and acknowledged.

Your obedient servant,


Secretary of War.



Richmond, Va., February 27, 1863.

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It is the decision and instruction of the War Department that where the Government has or has had, until his death or honorable discharge, the services of a substitute not otherwise liable to military service, the enrolling officers cannot go behind these facts to refuse the exemption of the principal on the ground of mere irregularity in the original acceptance of the substitute. In cases, however, presenting indications that the irregularity was purposed and had its origin in motives of fraud or collusion to evade the requirements of law or orders in reference to the character of the substitute offered, they will grant only a temporary exemption of the principal and report all the facts through the commandant of conscripts of the State for the final decision of the War Department through this Bureau.

In all cases, whether the exemption be recognized or not, irregularities in the acceptance of substitutes will be reported by the enrolling officers in order that the names of officers committing them may be laid before the War Department from this Bureau.

There is another class of cases in which the party claiming exemption produces the signature of the company commander only as accepting a substitution, which, in all cases of companies forming