I herewith transmit a communication from the Secretary of War with the report of the Chief of the Commissariat of the Army.
Richmond, February 15, 1862.
To the Honorable President of the Congress.
In response to the resolution of the Congress adopted on the 10th instant, I herewith transmit communications from all the respective Departments, except the War Department.
I am informed by the Secretary of War that so great is the press of important business on his Department, that he has not had time, as yet, to prepare the list of officers as desired, but will do so at his earliest opportunity.
To the Congress of the Confederate States.
Gentlemen: I deem it my duty to return for your reconsideration, with my objections, "An Act regulating furloughs and discharges in certain cases." I am unable to sign this act, as my judgment does not approve it, and I respectfully submit to you my reasons for withholding my signature.
By the terms of the act any sick or invalid soldier now out of camp, whether in hospital or not, shall be entitled to furlough or discharge on the ground of bodily disability, upon the certificate of any surgeon of the Confederate States, or of any surgeon of a hospital where the soldier is treated, whether such surgeon be in the Army or not. My objections to both as to the principles of this act and the practical difficulties which will embarrass its execution:
1st. I cannot but regard it as extremely unwise to grant control over any soldier, to the extent of discharging him from service, to any body of men not employed in the service of the Government, over whom it exercises no control, and who present to it no