War of the Rebellion: Serial 128 Page 0414 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.

Search Civil War Official Records

[FEBRUARY 28, 1863. -For act of the General Assembly of Virginia, transferring the State troops and rangers to the Confederate Government, see Series I, VOL. LI, Part II, p. 686.]

CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA, SUBSISTENCE DEPT.,

Richmond, Va., March 2, 1863.

Hon. JAMES A. SEDDON,

Secretary of War:

SIR: The intervention of commanding officers with the ration is unauthorized and unadvisable for many reasons; but under existing circumstances it is mischievous.

The subsistence of the different divisions of the Army should be, if possible, from the productions of the districts wherein they respectively operate; more especially is this necessary in the present condition of transportation. Such directions were given from the War Department on the 28th April, 1862.

The condition of the country requires that the ration must necessarily vary in different localities. It is not to be expected, and it is not the fact that commanding generals are most competent judges of the subsistence resources of the country, and should not be permitted to issue any order respecting rations whatever. If they think the best is not done, let them say so to the Secretary of War, who can inform himself and act; but any further action by commanding officers only tends to render the Army dissatisfied or cause a toad rapid consumption of supplies.

Privation is to be looked for, and encouragement is all that the generals can beneficially do, beyond calling the attention of the Secretary of War to existing things.

There are other difficulties attending the settlement of officers' accounts, which the Auditor will settle according to regulations of the Secretary of War.

Reference is again made to the indorsement of this Bureau on a paper submitting ration orders of the Army of the West.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

L. B. NORTHROP,

Commissary-General of Subsistence.

[Inclosure.]

CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA, SUBSISTENCE DEPT.,

[Inclosure.]

CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA, SUBSISTENCE DEPT.,

Richmond, Va., April 28, 1862.

Henceforth the ration will be a pound of beef or half a pound of bacon or pork, and the ration of flour or meal will not exceed a pound and a half of either.

Commissaries are again instructed to save all the tallow they can, to be used in place of lard.

L. B. NORTHROP,

Commissary-General of Subsistence.

Approved.

G. W. RANDOLPH,

Secretary of War.