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Journal of the Congress of the Confederate States of America, 1861-1865 (Volume 4) online

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The Senate adjourned.

SECRET SESSION.

The President pro tempore laid before the Senate a communication
from the Secretary of the Treasury, transmitting an estimate of an
approjniation required for redemption of the public debt; which was

read.

(h'dti't'd. That it 1h> referred to th(> ( "onunittee on l^inance.

On motion l)y Mr. (iraham.

The Senate resolved into open leuislative sessio

EXKCITIVK ,*<ESS10N.

Mr. Sparrow, from the C'onunittee on Military Atiairs, to whom
were referred the nominations of E. P. Alexander, to be brio:adier-
jjenei-al; Thomas 11. Carter. Hilary J'. Jones, and Melancthon Smith,
to be colonels; James Hearino-. Frank Hu.oer. C. M. Braxton. W. J.
Peirram, D. (i. Mcintosh, AV. T. Poatruc, K. A. Hardaway. Charles
Kichardson, L. Hoxton. and S. V. Wiriiams, to be lieutenant-colonels;
W. E. (\itshaw. T. C. Jordan, M. B. Miller, Uol>. M. Stril)linir.
R. C. ^I. Pajre, David Watson, Josci)h McCJraw. M. Johnson, (ieori^e
Ward. V. Maurin, M. N. Moorman. R. P. Chew. \V. H. Caskie. J. 11.
Pratt, and R. Cobb, to l>e majors; Stephen Elliott, to be bripidier-
generul; Edward J. Black andW. P. A. Murray, to be aids-de-camp,
with the rank of tirst lieutenants, reported, with the recommendation
that all of said nominations be continued.

The Senate proceeded to consider said report: and in concurrence
therewith, it was

Brsn/nd. That the Senate advise and consent to their a]ipomtment,
agfreeablv to the nominations of the President.

The Senate resumed the consideration of the nomination of B. L.
Braselman, to be second lieutenant of artillery in the Provisional .Vrmy
of the Confederate States; and

Mr. Graham submitted the foUowinu- resolution for consideration:

AVw/r((/, That the Sei-retarv of the Senate inform the President that the nomina-
tion of B. L. Rrasehnan made to the Senate at the last session of the last Conarress f<^r
the office of second lieutenant of artillery, not having been contirmed or rejeote(i
at the last session of the last Conirress. the Senate now decline to act npon sai<f
nomination, and that in the case of this an.l all other nominations similarly sitnated.
the Senate is ready to receive new nonnnations to till the same.

The Senate proceeded to consider the saivl resolution; and
On motion by Mr. Walker, to amend the same by substitutinor
therefor the following-:

Whereas in the judgment of the Senate, the most judicious and proper practice in
reference to nominations made hv the President during the session is that all nonn-
nations which arc not contirnie.i or rejected during the session at which thev are
made shall not he acted on at any succeeding session without heing again made by

the Presi<lent: and , . , , , i- «»; • .i

Whereas, sucli practice may well be adopted without tiiereby disalhrming the



May 28, 1>'64.1 SENATE. . 101

constitutional power of the Senate l)y f)rder entered on its Journal to postpone nomi-
nations made durinj^ the session for further consideration to the ensuing session, and
at such ensuing session to confirin or reject the same: Therefore,

Rexulrei!, That the ('oiiniiitU'e on Rules he instructed to report a rule providing
that nominations not confirmed or rejected at the session at which they are made,
shall not l)e acted on at any succeeding session without heing again made })y the
President.

Resolved, That all iKjminations made at the last or any preceding session and
postponed by order of the Senate to this sessi<jn, be Liid on the table and tlie Presi-
dent informed that the Senate, having ado])ted the rule mentioned in the preceding
resolution, decline acting upon them.

On niotioii l>v ^Ir. Jeinison, to ani(>nd the ainendrnent proposed b}'
Mr. Walker by strikiiij^ out the preain})le thereto,

It was determined in the Me^-ativ'e.

On the qtiestion to agree to the amendment proposed ])y Mr. Walker
to the resolution ,

It was determined in the affirmative, \ ^j

' ( JNays i

On motion by Mr. Orr,

The yeas and nays beini^ desired In' one-tifth of the Senators present,

Those who voted in the affirmative are,

Messrs. Barnwell, Ilaynes, Meiuy, Hill, Jemisoii, Johnson of Geor-
gia, Orr, Semmes, Sparrow, ^^'alker, and Watson.

Those who voted in the negative are,

Messrs. Caperton, Graham, Hunter, Johnson of Arkansas, Johnson
of Mis.souri, Mitchel, and Oldham.

On the question to agree to the resolution as amended,

It was determined in the affirmative, i ^r u

On motion by ]Mr. Semmes,

The yeas and nays being desired by one-Iifth of the Senators present,

Those who voted in the affirmative are,

Messrs. Barnwell, Caperton, Graham, Hill, Hunter, Jemison, John-
son of Georgia, Johnson of Missouri, and ^^^alker.

Those who voted in the negative are,

Messrs. Henry, Johnson of Arkansas, Mitchel, Oldham, Orr,
Semmes, Sparrow, and Watson.

On motion by Mr. Henry, to reconsider the vote last mentioned,

It was determined in the negative.

So the resolution as amended was agreed to.

The Senate resumed the consideration of the motion submitted by
Mr. Graham on the 25th instant, to lay on the table the resolutions
submitted by Mr. Hill, from the Committee on the Judiciary', in rela-
tion to nominations continued or postponed for further consideration
from one session of the Senate to another; and

Ofdered^ That the resolutions be laid on the table.

On motion by Mr, Orr,

The Senate resolved into secret legislative session.



102 JOURNAL OF THE [May 30, 1864.

MONDAY, May 80, 1864.

OPEN SESSION.

Mr. Johnson of Arkansas (by leave) introduced

A joint resolution (S. 9) of thanks to Gen. E. Kirb\' Smith and the
officers and sokliers of his command:

which was road the first and second times and i-eferred to the Coumiit-
tee on Military Affairs.

Mr. Sparrow (by h'ave) introduced (he foUowing- bills; which were
severally load the tirstand second times and referred to the Committee
on Military Athiirs:

S. 54. A bill to oruanize the liuht artillery of the Confederate
States of America; and

S. 55. A bill to authorize the formation of new commands, to be
composed of supiM'numerary officers who may resij^n to join such com-
mands, and to limit and restrict the appointment of officers in certain
cases.

Mr. Caperton (1)V leave) introduced

A bill (S. 50) to authorize tlu> appointment of oraduates of military
institutions as cadets in the Provisional Ainiy of tb.e Confcnlerate States
of America;

which was read the first and second times and referred to tho Coumiit-
tee on ^lilitary Afiairs.

Mr. Brown, from the Conmiittec on Naval Afiairs, to whom was
referred the bill (S. 53) to amend the several acts in relation to a vol-
unteer navy, reported it without amendment.

The Senate proceeded, as in Counnittee of the Whole, to the con-
sideration of the said bill: and no amendment being proposed, it was
reported to the Senate.

Onh'i'dl^ That it be engrossed and read a third time.

The said bill was read the third time.

JRexolved^ That it pass, and that the title thereof be as aforesaid.

Ordrveil^ That the Secretary request the concurrence of the House
of Representatives therein.

Mr. Hill, from the Conunitteeonthe Judiciary, to whom was recom-
mitted the l)ill (11. Iv. S) to auth()i'izc> the judge of the district court
for the northern tli strict of (leorgia to change the place of holding
said court, reported it with amendments.

The Senate proceeded, as in Counnittee of the Whole, to the con-
sideration of the said bill; and the reported amendments having been
agreed to, the bill was reported to the Senate and (he amendments
were concurred in.

Ordrred^ That the anuudmcnts be engrossetl and the bill read a
third time.
• The said bill as amended was read the thiid time.

R(. sol red. That it pass with anuMidments.

On n)otion ])y jNlr. Hill, the title was amended to read: "An act to
authoii/e the judges of tlu^ district courts of the Confederate States
to api)oint an(l chajige the times and ])Iaces of holding the courts in
their respective districts."

(>rdi r<il^ That the Secretary recjuesl tiie concurrence of the House
of Representatives in the amendments.



May ;w, isiM.] SENATE. 103

The Senate resumed the consideration of the resolution submitted
bv iVIr. Johnson of JNIissouri on the '26th instant, to rescind tlie reso-
lution passed by the two Houses fixing Tuesday, the olst instant, as
the day for the adjournment of the present session of Cono-ress; and

On motion by Mr. Sparrow,

Ordered., That the further consideration of the resolution l>e post-
poned until to-morrow\

On motion by Mr. Johnson of Arkansas, the vote on ag-reeing to the
motion to postpone the further considei'ation of the resolution until
to-morrow w^as reconsidered.

The Senate resumed the consideration of said motion; and

On the question to agree thereto,

It was determined in the negative.

On motion by j\Ir. J^arnwell,

Ordered., That the resolution lie upon the ta])le.

The Senate proceeded, as in Committee of the Whole, to the con-
sideration of the bill (S. 38) for the payment of commissioners appointed
under the act entitled "An act to suspend the privilege of the writ of
habeas corpus in certain cases,'' and to confer certain powers upon
said commissioners.

On motion by Mr. Orr. to amend the l)ill l)y striking out of th'e tirst
section the words

the com])ensation of the judges of the miUtary courts while engaged in the perform-
ance of their dutie.«, and tliat their assistants shall be allowed the pay of judge-advo-
cate of the said courts,

and inserting in lieu thereof the words

a-: compensation for such service the sum of ten dollars per day while actually engaged
in the performance of their duties, and that their assistants shall be allowed the sum
of seven dollars per day while actually engaged in the performance of their duty.

It was determined in the negative.

The amendments reported from the Committee on the Judiciarj^
having been agreed to.

On motion by Mr. Barnwell, further to amend th(^ bill by striking
out of the tirst section the following proviso:

Prorhh'fJ, That not more than one commissioner shall be appointed in any one
State, and that not more than one assistant shall be emj>loyed for that purpose.

It was determined in the affirmative.

On motion by Mr. Graham, to amend the bill ])v inserting the fol-
lownng independent section:

Sec. — . And it is hereby declared that nothing containechin the said act entitled
"An act to suspend the privilege of the writ of hal^eas corpus in certain cases," shall
be construed to alter the law of arrest and commitment; and that no i)erson shall be
arrested and detained by virtue thereof in any of the cases enumerated therein unless
charged on oath with some one of the offenses mentioned in the same, or unless in
cases of exigent arrest without warrant, in which latter instance the party ari-ested
shall be detained by reason of said arrest, only until such oath can be conveniently
made and proper process of law sued out,

A question was" raised b}^ Mr. Sparrow, whether, \mder the twen-
tieth clause of the ninth section of the tirst article of the Constitution,
the amendment was in order; and

The President pro tempore, under the sixth rule of the Senate, took
the sense of the Senate thereon; and

On the question,

Is the proposed amendment in order?



104 JOURNAL OF THE [May 30, 1864.

It was determined in the neg-ative.

So it was decided by the Senate that the amendment was not in
order.

No further amendment being proposed, the bill was reported to the
Senate and the amendments were concurred in.

Ordered. That the bill be engrossed and read a third time.

The said ])ill was read the third time.

Mesolred^ That it pass, and that the title thereof be as aforesaid.

Ordered^ That the Secretary request the concurrence of the House
of Representatives therein.

On motion by Mr. Orr,

Ordered^ That the petition of Margaret A. Rice, on the tiles of the
Senate, be referred to the C/ommittee on Finance.

On motion by Mi". Hill,

The Senate resolved into secret legislative session.

The doors having ])een opened.

On motion l>y Mr. Maxwell, that the Senate take a recess until 3
o'clock p. m..

It was determined in the negative.

On motion by Mr. Walker, that the Senate proceed to the consid-
eration of the resolution sul)mitted by Mr. Johnson of Missouri on
the 20th instant, to rescind the resolution passed by the two Houses
fixing Tuesday, the 8Lst instant, as the dav for the adjournment of the
present session of Congress,

It was determined in the negative.

On motion l)y Mi". Orr,

The Senate took a recess until half past 2 o'clock p. m.

HALF PAST 2 o'clock P. M.

A message from the House of Representatives, 4)y Mr. Dalton:

Mr. Presidmt: The House of Kepresentatives have passed a l>ill (H. R. 125) to
establish certain post routes therein named; in which they request the concurrence
of the Senate.

They have agreed to the amendments of the Senate to the bill (H. R. 52) to amend
an act of this Congress entitled "An act to provide for holding elections of Repre-
sentatives in the Ccjugres.-i of the (!on federate States in the State of Tennessee."

And they have passed the following resolution; in which they request the concur-
rence of the Senate:

"AV.so/irr/, That the joint resolution fixing the time for the adjournnjent of the Sen-
ate and House of Representatives on the thirty-Hrst day of May, eighteen hundred
and sixty-four, be, and is hereby, rescinded, and tliat the President of the Senate and
the Speakcrof the llou.-jcof Representatives adjourn their respective Houses at twelve
o'clock meridian on Tuesday, Juni' seventh."

The Speaker of the House of Representatives having signed sundry enrolled bills
and an enrolled joint resolution, I am directed to bring them to the Senate for the
signature of their President.

The Senate proceeded to consider the lesolution of the House of
Represenlatives extending the time for the adjournment of the present
session of Congress; and

AV.sv>/vv'^/, That they concur therein.

Oi'dvi'iit^ That the Secretary inform the House of Representatives
thereof.

Th(> bill (H. R. 125) received this day from the House of Represent-
atives for concurrence was read the tirst and second times and referred
to the Committee on Post-Otfices and I'ost-Roads.



May 30, 1864.] SENATE. 105

The following message was received from the President of the Con-
federate States, Vj}' Mr. B. N. Harrison, his Secretar}':

Richmond, Va., May 28, 1864.
To the Senate and House of Representatives:

I herewith transmit for your information a communication from the Secretary of
War, covering copies of several reports of military operations, together w ith a copy
of a letter from Gen. R. E. J^ee, in which he expresses his disapproval of the pub-
lication of such reports, -and to which 1 invite your special attention.

JEFFERSON DAVIS.

The message was read.

Ordered^ That it be referred to the Committee on Militar}" Affairs.

The following message was received from the President of the Con-
federate States, by Mr. B. N. Harrison, his Secretary:

Richmond, Va., May SO, 1864.
To the Senate and House of Representatives:

I herewith transmit for your consideration a communication from the Secretary of
the Treasury, submitting an estimate of an additional sum required for the support
of the Government.

JEFFERSON DAVIS.

The message was read.

Ordered^ That it be referred to the Committee on Finance,

The following message was received from the President of the Con-
federate States, by Mr. B. N. Harrison, his Secretary:

Richmond, Va., May 30, 1864.
To tlte Senate and House of Representatives:

I herewith transmit for your consideration communications from the proper offi-
cers suVjmitting estimates of the amounts required to carry out the provisions of the
act approved May 1:5, 1864, authorizing additional compensation to certain officers
and employees in the civil and legislative departments of the Government.

JEFFERSON DAVIS.

The message was read.

Ordered^ That it be referred to the Committee on Finance.

The following message was received from the President of the Con-
federate States, by Mr. B. N. Harrison, his Secretar} :
To the Senate and House of Representatives of the Confederate States of America:

A bill "to provide and organize a general staff for armies in the field, to serve dur-
ing the war," was passed by your predecessors and submitted for my approval at the
close of the last session.

I was unable to approve it, and now desire to state iny objections to it, as well as
my views on this imp(jrtant subject, in the hope that, \)y a comparison of opinion,
some measure may be framed equally aci'eptable to the legislative and executive
departments of the Government.

I believe it to be established by the experience of Europe, as well as our own, that
it is impracticable to organize and administer armies with effiiiency without the aid
of a general staff, permanent in its character, traiiu*<l in its duties, aspiring to promo-
tion in its own corps, and responsible to the head of the <lei)artment. Such a staff
should be composed of a small body of otlirers whose eilucation, experience, activity,
and special adaptation to their duties reniler them i)eculiarly competent to perform
functions on which an army de[)ends for its capacity to act with vigor. In Europe,
years of varied education in ttie schools, tiie cantonment, and the field, fit the staff
officer for his position, and a long experience in the lower grades is required before
he is deemed competent to duty in a more important sphere. We are forced to make
experimental apiiointinents of officers unprepared by any previous training, and who
can oidy accjuire in actual service that experience which nuist serve in place of well-
grounded instruction. It is scarcely poss'l)le to make this experience supply the
defect of previous military education otherwise than by the organization of the offi-
cers into one corps, responsible to one head, who can assign them to positions inde-
pendent of the movements of general officers, and who, by judiciously varying the
field or character of their duties, can gi\e them larger opportunities for instruction,
and ])revent their views being narrowed 1o the routine and usages of a single com-
mander, himself, perhaps, without military eilucation.



106 JOURNAL OF THE [May 30, 1864.

Hope of promotion, founded on their own merit and length of good service, is as
necessary to the officers of the general staff as to those of the line, furnishing the best
stimulus known to honorable exertion and zealous discharge of duty. This stimulus
can not exist unless the staff be organized into one corps, responsible to one chief,
who, thus becoming intimately acquainted with the capacity and merits of each, is
able properly to distribute the duties so as to secure the services of the right man in
the right place, and afford to each an opportunity for distinction. If otherwise, each
staff officer Ijecomes dependent upon the particular commander with whom he is
serving. No means of comparison exist between the relative merits of the officers.
Each looks for promotion to the favor of his genei'al, and rises in grade not by his
own relative merit, but by the ])atronage of his commander. A gallant and able
ccjmmander, whose own jiromotion is exceptionably rapid by reason of his special
merits, is thus enal)led to lift to higher grades the officers of his staff to whom he
has become attached l)y companionship in the field, although these officers maj"^ be
far inferior in merit and length of service to others whose duties have connected
them with generals lens distinguished. Promotion thus becomes with the staff a
matter of hazard, dependent, not on the merit of the officer himself, but of the
general with whom he serves, and heartburnings, jealousy, and discontent are the
natural results of so false a system.

Again, if tlie general staff is not formed into corps there will not be the "esprit"
necessary in all military organizations, and tliere can not be the cointelligence among
the officers thereof which secures the certain and rai)id communication of all infor-
mation thiough the different parts of an army. There will also be embarrassment in
their tenure of ottice and assignment to duty, as when a general officer dies, or is
relieved from his command, there remain no duties to be performed by the staff
which had l)ecn authorized for liim especially. However valuable or meritorious
the officers may be they are disj)lace<l i>y the staff chosen by the successor of their
commander. Nothing remains but to deitrive tluMu of their commissions without
fault of their own, or to keep them in service as supernumei-aries, and thus to add to
the nund»er of officers already in excess of the wants of tlie Army.

Again, an f)rganization of a general staff should possess flexibility, so that the proper
number and class of staff officers can be sent where needed. If an inflexibie rule of
assignment be fixed by legislation, some connnands will be cund)ered with unneces-
sary officers, while others will be deficient in the nund)er indispensable to jierforni
the nece.s.*ary duties. Legislation would sureU' be considered unwise if it allotted by
inflexible rule the numljer of troops to be used in each military department, yet it
would be scarcely more objectionabU' than the assignment of the s^ame specified
mimber of staff oflici'rs to each conunander according to his grade, thus applying a
general rule to a series of cases each re(|uiring special treatment.

The inspecting duties in an army ought not, in my judgment, to be separated from
those of the adjutants. The erroneous impression prevails that an inspecting depart-
ment, independent of the general staff, is a^stablished in most of the armies of
Europe. Tlie n-verse is the fact, and the duties of inspection are so intimately con-
nected with the other duties of the general staff that they can be projierly jterformed
by it alone. The objei-tions to the separation are manifold. In the first place, offi-
cers having no other than ins[>ecting duties must fre<|uently be uneni]iloyi'd evi'u in
war, while in jK-ace their iluties will occupy but very little time. Next, it is to lie
observed that where the adjutants and inspectors form one cor) >s the duties of the
adjutant make him familiar with the details of the service where reform and disci-
pline are most needed, and thus render him more competent to effective inspection
when assigned to that duty than lie could be if exclusively employed as insi^ector.
Tjastly, the duties of an insjiector are such as not to render the officer who performs
them acce])tal)le to his brother officers, if his duty lie i>roperly ])erformed. it is not
to be wondered at that an officer, whose duties may not bi> inappropriately described
as those of a detective, should, if his duty be rigidly i>erformed, incur somewhat of
the odium of an informer, and when these <inties constitut(> the sole service of an
officer i»ermanently attache<l to an army he nmst become eitlu'r so lax in their |ier-
formance as to render liim useless, or his professional pride and self-respect are
woundeil, and his relations with his brother officers unfavorably affected by the dis-
trust anil dislike resulting from his official reports. When, however, an assistant
adjutant and insi)ector general is from time to time assigiu'd to the making of neces-
sary insp(>ctioTis at various ))oints, this temporary discharge of an unpleasant duty
becomes but an incident in his ])rofessional career, and does not affect his relations
with his brother officers.

Having stated these as the general ]>rinciples which, in my judgment, siiould
govern legislation on the subject, the objections to the l>ill ]>assed at the last session
can be more easily understoo<l, and I proceed to state them briefly:

L The first section of the bill authorizes a general conunanding armies or a sepa-



May 30, 1864.] SENATE. 107

rate army to assign to duty one of the general officers under his command as chief
of staff, one of the l)rigadier-generals under his connnand as inspector-general, and
one otlier brigadier as chief quartermaster; one officer below the rank of brigadier as
chief commissary, and one as cliief of ordnance.

This power of assignment is given without reference to, or consultation with, the
War Department or the Executive, and might be exercised in contravention of the
views and judgment of both. Leaving out of view the question whether it is in



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