Page:A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Confederacy, Including the Diplomatic Correspondence, 1861-1865, Volume I.djvu/243

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213
First Congress.

quires that in all cases elections shall be held to fill the lowest grade, while another gives power to promote from the ranks to any vacant office a private who may have distinguished himself conspicuously. I would be glad to have the intent of Congress on this point stated in an amendment to the bill. Third. Under the fourth section of the act of the 11th of December, 1861, it was declared that all troops revolunteering or reƫnlisting shall, at the expiration of their present term of service, have the power to reorganize themselves into companies and elect their company officers, and that said companies should have the right to reorganize themselves into battalions or regiments, and elect their field officers, &c. By the second section of the act just passed, 16th of April, 1862, it is prohibited to include in the organization of such new companies and regiments as may be completed within thirty days "any persons now in the service." It is submitted whether bare justice to the men who first entered the military service, and who have again voluntarily enrolled themselves to serve for the war, does not require that the Government should carry out the understanding under which they reƫnlisted, by permitting them to serve in organizations more acceptable to them than those in which they are now embraced. I should regret to see men now for the first time brought into the service under the stringency of the law vested with the right of choosing their association, while the same privilege is denied to those who have distinguished themselves by the alacrity with which they have volunteered.

Jefferson Davis.


Executive Department, April 17, 1862.

To the Senate and House of Representatives.

I herewith transmit for the information of Congress a communication from the Secretary of the Navy, covering estimates for the amount required by the Navy Department for specified purposes.

I recommend that an appropriation be made of the sums and for the objects mentioned.

Jefferson Davis.


Executive Department, April 17, 1862.

To the House of Representatives.

I herewith transmit a communication from the Secretary of