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From the Thu., Jun. 02, 1864 issue

    CIRCULAR No. 2.—

  • I. General Orders No. 26, Adjutant and Inspector General's office, March 1st, 1864, is herewith made a part of this circular, and commandants of conscripts are enjoined to proceed to the rapid and vigorous execution of its provisions, under the instructions and interpretation herein prescribed.
  • II. Under the terms of the 8th section of the act of Congress published in General Orders No. 25 Adjutant and Inspector General's office, and the terms of Circular No 65, of the Bureau, last series, commandants will proceed to organize the service in their respective States. In addition to the organization therein provided for, and in further pursuance of paragraph II, of the said General Orders No 25, commandants will forthwith organize in each county a Board, to consist of not more than three of the most reliable and intelligent citizens, between the ages of 45 and 50 years, and who have been enrolled and detailed for the service. These Boards will be charged with aiding the local enrolling officer in obtaining information concerning all applications for exemption and detail for agricultural or other industrial pursuits, and also in furnishing all other information which may be needed in the duties imposed upon the enrolling officers.
    The local and Congressional enrolling officer will be required to supervise the action of these Boards, and promptly report to the commandant unfitness or delinquencies on the part of the persons detailed for them. So long as the duties are properly performed, the persons so employed will he exempted from other service. Care will be used in the beginning to select proper men; and in view of the grave duties herein devolved upon the enrolling officer, he will, at his discretion, require the written opinion of the Board on claims for exemption or applications for detail, and may call on them for special information concerning matters pertinent to the service. In every case referred by the local or Congressional district enrolling officer to the commandants, an opinion as to the merit must be endorsed or accompany the case, and the like rule will be rigidly observed by commandants in referring to this Bureau.
  • III. Commandants will order the immediate enrollment and examination of all persons within the prescribed ages, who are found in the employment of any department of the Government, and who are not specially exempted by the act of Congress; and such as are found fit for service in the field, may be detailed until the 10th day of April next, provided an application is made according to the terms of the 6th paragraph of General Orders No 26, herein cited.
  • IV. Commandants of conscripts will forthwith transmit to this Bureau recommendations for physicians to be employed in accordance with paragraph IX, General Order. No 26, herein cited. Much complaint reaches this Bureau concerning irregularities in the medical examinations. Loose or irregular examinations must not be permitted, and commandants will promptly report any well ascertained delinquency in the matter.
  • V. Forms for consolidated reports by the commandants of conscripts will be forwarded; also, forms for the records of the congressional district and local enrolling officers. These records must be accurately kept, and the reports based on them must be in a clear and intelligible form, or they will be returned for revision and correction.
  • VI. Persons and classes enumerated in the 1st, 2d, 3d, 4th, 5th, and 6th articles of section 10th, except those referred to in the latter clause of the 4th article of the said 10th section of the act of Congress recited, shall be exempted. All other person referred to in said act shall be detailed.
    1. Persons who shall be determined by the Board of Examination to be incapable of performing active service in the field, and any of the duties mentioned in the 8th section of the said act of Congress, from causes of a permanent nature, shall be exempted from military service by the said board, who shall grant certificates thereof, which shall specify the causes of the incapacity, reciting in full the nature and degree of the disease or other incapacity, and the probable duration of the disability caused by it; and the parties shall not be subject to future examination, unless specially ordered by the Board of the Congressional District in which such parties reside, or by the commandant of conscripts for the State, or by this Bureau.
  • 2. When, in the opinion of enrolling officers, the causes for which exemption was granted to a person, after examination by the medical board, have ceased to exist, they will make a report to the Board, stating the name of the person, when enrolled, when examined, and the disease or other cause of disability, with the reasons for believing it to have disappeared, and that the person is capable of performing active service in the field, or some of the duties mentioned in the said 8th section of the act aforesaid.
    The Examining Board will then order the party to be brought before it for a re-examination.—When a person is re-examined by the Board, his former certificate shall be surrendered and cancelled. If again found unfit for duty, a new certificate of exemption shall be, issued to him.
    3. Every certificate of exemption granted by a Board of Examination shall be approved by the Congressional district enrolling officer, who shall protect the person exempted from molestation by the officers of conscription, and from re-examination, unless the Board of Examination, or the Commandant of Conscripts, or the Bureau of Conscription shall order the same.
    1. Application for exemption under the 3d and 6th articles of the 10th section of the act aforesaid, shall be made to the enrolling officer of the county in which the applicant resides, who will thoroughly investigate the case, and if satisfied, by competent evidence, that exemption should be allowed, shall issue a certificate thereof, which must be submitted to the enrolling officer of the Congressional district for his approval.
    2. Applications for exemptions under the fifth article of the 10th section of the act aforesaid shall be made to the commandant of conscripts for the State, who will grant the certificate of exemption authorized by law, to continue during compliance with the conditions prescribed by said act. Exemption, except for the President, Treasurer, Auditor, and Superintendent, shall not be allowed to any officers and employees of a railroad company, unless the President or Superintendent shall certify, on oath, that the parties applied for are to the efficient operation of such railroad; that the number of persons exempted on said railroad shall not exceed one for each mile thereof in actual use for military transportation, that the exempts for such road shall be reported by name and description once a month to the commandants of conscripts for the State through which such road passes, or to the Bureau of Conscription, together with the names and descriptive list of any who may leave the employment of the railroad company, or who may cease to be indispensable to the efficient operation of the said road.
    3. The exemption of overseers or agriculturalists on each farm or plantation upon which there are now, and were on the 1st day of January last, fifteen able bodied hands between the ages of sixteen and fifty, will be allowed for the space of twelve months, and the certificate of exemption shall be granted by the officer taking the bond required by law, upon being informed by the commandant for that State that the bond is approved.
    4. The bond required to be given upon the exemption of an overseer or agriculturist, under the 4th article of section 10th of the said act, shall be taken by the enrolling officer of the county or district in which such party resides, with the advice and assistance of the temporary Board aforesaid. It shall be payable to the Confederate States of America, in a penalty double the estimated value of the products to be delivered to the Government, and conditioned for the faithful performance of the requirements of the 4th article of the 10th section of the said act. The value of the said products shall be assessed by the enrolling officer, who shall take the said bond, with the assistance of the said temporary Board, according to the market value thereof at the time and place of assessment.
    The said bond may be secured by a deposit of the amount of the penalty thereof in notes issued from the Treasury Department of the Confederate States, with any of the depositaries of the said Treasury, or by personal security, the nature of the security to be at the option of the principal obligor in the said bond. Should the person so exempted elect to give personal security, the sureties leaders by him shall justify their sufficiency under oath before some justice of the peace, but shall not be accepted unless the enrolling officer taking the said bond, under the advice of the said temporary Board, shall deem them sufficient. Such bonds shall, after due execution, he transmitted to the commandant of conscripts for the State, for file in this office, to be surrendered to the obligors when the conditions thereof are fully complied with; and the receipt of any quartermaster or commissary, specifying that the amount of produce required by the bond has been duly delivered and accepted, will entitle the person to have the bond cancelled; and copies of such receipts should be forwarded to the commandant of conscripts, to be by him forwarded to the Quartermaster General or the Commissary General, through this Bureau.
    Persons entitled to exemption as provided for in paragraph XII, General Orders No 26, A and I G O, current series, will, on application, receive certificates thereof from the congressional enrolling officer, on producing satisfactorily evidence that they have complied with the requirement of the law.
    Certificates of exemption for officers of the Confederate and State Governments will be given by the commandants for the States.
    1. All other applications for exemption shall be made in writing to the enrolling officer of the county or district in which the applicant resides; shall be supported by his affidavit and other sworn testimony, and dealt with according to the provisions of paragraph III, of General Orders No 26, A and I G O, current series.
    2. Every application for exemption should be carefully, minutely, and thoroughly investigated by the local enrolling officer, with the aid of the temporary board to be organized under the 2d clause of paragraph II. of this circular, and be thereafter transmitted to the commandants of conscripts for the State, with a report of facts, and their respective opinions on the merits of the application.
    The report of facts should be somewhat in detail, setting forth in regular order the facts developed in the investigation, giving briefly the reasons for the opinion expressed, and instead of being put in the form of an endorsement, will be made on a separate sheet of paper.
    The investigation should not be confined to an examination of the application and the papers that accompany it, or merely into the truth of the statements therein made, but should be directed with a view of ascertaining all the facts and circumstances of the case, and the exact condition of the parties with relation therein.
    Agricultural Details.
    1. The officers of conscription will give the most careful attention to the provisions of paragraph IV G O No 26, A and I G O, current series, in connection with the last clause of the 4th article of the 10th section of the act of Congress cited.
    This paragraph embraces the whole system of details provided by law to maintain the industrial productions of the country, in view of the public defence.
    2. The investigation of every case presented must be the most precise and accurate which can be obtained by the enrolling officer, (with the cooperation of the temporary boards,) and all action must be in direct view of the necessities indicated. Commandants will institute such modes of inquiry and report as will furnish the fullest testimony.
    The policy of the law is to enforce the largest amount of production in every case in which the detail is made. The schedule of terms hereto appended will, it is believed, meet a majority of the cases that are likely to be presented. Where it is doubtful whether the case is covered by the classification, commandants will in general decide by reference to the plain intent of the law, or refer the matter to this bureau, with full testimony and opinion. In all details there must be satisfactory evidence of the necessity, as expressed in General Orders No 26, current series.
    3. Where there are two or more farms contiguous, or within five miles of each other, measuring from the homesteads, having on each five or more hands, amounting in the aggregate to fifteen hands, or where one person has two or more plantations within five miles of each other, having an aggregate of fifteen or more hands, there may be detailed one person as overseer or manager of the two or more farms; Provided, there is on neither of the farms a white male adult declared by the enrolling officer and the temporary board capable of managing the farms with a reasonable efficiency, not liable to military duty; and provided the person detailed was, on the first day of January, 1864, either owner, manager or overseer residing on one of the farms; and provided the owners of said farms shall execute a joint and several bond, on the terms prescribed for the owners of fifteen hands, except that such persons shall not be a lowed the privilege of commutation provided in the 4th article of the 10th section of the act recited.
    4. Where details are allowed to persons having less than fifteen, and five, or more than five hands, they shall enter into like obligation as prescribed for the owner of fifteen or more hands, except that for each hand less than fifteen, down to five, there shall be supplied five pounds less meal, thus; each of fourteen hands, ninety five; thirteen hands, ninety; twelve hands, eighty-five; * * * * six hands, fifty-five; five hands, fifty pounds.
    5. Where details are allowed to persons having less than five hands, they shall enter into like obligations to sell all their surplus productions to the Government.
    6. All details herein prescribed to be allowed are subject to revocation by the commandant of conscripts, on the report of the enrolling officer that the person detailed is not habitually, industriously, and in good faith engaged in the occupation for which the detail is granted. Enrolling officers are required to be unusually vigilant in supervising such details. Omission in this duty will constitute grave dereliction.
    7. Enrolling officers are required to exercise the utmost caution in recommending details in the classes enumerated. It is by no means intended to grant them indiscriminately, but to limit them as much as is consistent with the public good. All pertinent circumstances will be carefully inquired into. Among these are fitness for the field; ability or aptitude for the purposes of the detail; condition of the family; whether any, or how many, are in the military service; public good, justice, equity or necessity, &c.
    Applications for detail, such as are not required for the service of any of the military bureaus, or for service IX any of the departments of the Government, including service with contractors, will be made, accompanied by a descriptive list, to the enrolling officer of the appropriate county or district, and be supported by the affidavit of the applicant and other testimony under oath.
    The enrolling officer will institute a minute and searching investigation into all the circumstances of the case, the results of which will be act forth on a separate sheet of paper.
    The district enrolling officer may, if he approves the application, grant a detail for sixty days, and forward the papers, through the commandant, to the Bureau for its action.
    If the application is refused, the reason in full will be endorsed; and, in case of appeal, the papers forwarded to this Bureau, through the same channels.
    If the persons for whose detail application is made are engaged in performing the duties on account of which details are asked, they will be allowed to remain until final action. If otherwise, they should be sent to camps of instruction.
    Applications for the detail of persons between forty-five and fifty years of age, for service in any of the military bureaus or in any of the departments of the Government, will be made, accompanied by a descriptive list, to the local or district enrolling officer; and it must act forth the nature of the duties to be performed, the necessity for the detail, and the period for which it is required.
    The district enrolling officer, after investigation, made and reported as directed in preceding paragraph, may, if he approve the application, grant a detail for a period not exceeding sixty days, and forward the papers to the commandant for his action.
    An appeal from the action of the enrolling officers and the commandant, may be taken to this Bureau.
    1. Applications for the detail for service in any of the military bureaus, or for any of the departments of the Government (including contractors,) of artisans, mechanics, of persons of scientific skill, to perform indispensable duties, should be made, with descriptive list, to the enrolling officer. The skill of the party, the duties to be performed, and why his services are indispensable, and the period for which the detail is required, must be dis ly act forth.
    Application, for the employees of contractors must in addition, contain a certificate from the officer contracted with, or the head of the department, that the services of the particular parties are required for the performance of indispensable Government work.—The district enrolling officer may grant the detail for sixty days, and forward the papers, through the commandant (each expressing his opinion,) to this bureau, for its action.
    If the application is refused, reasons in full will be endorsed, and in case of appeal, papers forwarded to this bureau.
    If the parties applied for are at work, they will be allowed to remain until action is taken. If otherwise, they shall be sent to the camps of instruction.
    Applications for the detail of contractors themselves must also contain the certificate of the head of the bureau required by the 11th section of the act.
  • XVI. All other applications for exemption or detail, not otherwise provided, will be made to the enrolling officer, and forwarded through the proper channels.
  • XVII. Great care should be exercised in exempting or detailing able-bodied men between eighteen and forty-five.
    No case should be acted on until after minute and thorough investigation as to the alleged private or public necessity, advantage, convenience, justice, or equity, and as to whether persons not liable to service in the field may not be obtained.
    1. Examining boards, in addition to the lists directed in paragraph VIII, General Orders No 26, A and I G O, current series, will furnish district enrolling officers with lists of men in their districts found fit for military service, but unfit for service in the field, specifying in each case what duties they are capable of performing. Congressional District officers to furnish similar lists to county enrolling officers, the object being to enable persons needing detailed men to see who are the subjects of detail, and to choose from them.
    2. Enrolling officers will forward to the commandant of conscripts, monthly, a report of all persons enrolled by them, and the action taken in each case.
    These reports will be consolidated by the commandant, with reference to the distinctions made in the act of Congress, and the regulations for its enforcement in duplicate, one copy of which will be forwarded to this bureau and one kept on file in the office of the commandant.
    1. Commandants of conscripts will proceed to enrol all persons between the ages of seventeen and eighteen and forty-five and fifty years, in execution of General Orders No 33, A and I G O, current series; which is herewith made a part of this Circular:
    Adjutant and Insp'r Gen'ls Office,
    Richmond, Va, March 15, 1864.
    General Orders, No 33.—
    1. The Bureau of Conscription will proceed to enrol all persons between the ages of seventeen and eighteen years, and between the ages of forty-five and fifty years, under the 5th section of the Act of Congress to organize forces to serve during the war.
    2. Persons liable to enrollment will present themselves to the enrolling officer in the States east of the Mississippi river within thirty days from the day when the notion shall be given in the district or county by the enrolling officer for persons of this class to appear for enrollment. The failure to comply with this notice will subject the defaulter to a liability to be called into the general service with the class of persons between 18 and 45, unless he shall have a valid excuse therefore, to be judged of by the Bureau of Conscription.
    3. Any person liable to enrollment under this act may join any company for local defence which has been formed under General Orders No 88, issued 26th June, 1863, for the war, or any other company for local defence which has been accepted into the service, and which, by the terms of its enlistment, is liable to serve any where within the State; or persons of this class may form new companies for local defence and special service, under General Orders No 86, 1863, for the war, and select their own officers.
    By order, S COOPER,
    Adj't and Insp'r General.
    2. Commandants will keep a separate and distinct roll of persons between the ages of seventeen and eighteen and forty-five and fifty.
    3. Commandants of conscripts will assign to duty, as a supporting force for conscription service, such persons as may be recommended by the examining boards as unfit for the field, but as competent for this service; and when as many as sixty-four such persons are so assigned they will be organized into a company, elect their officers, and return the muster rolls to the commandants; and if there be not a sufficient number to form a company is each Congressional District, then the commandant may
    assign a sufficient number of percent between 45 and 50 years of age, so as to complete a company for each Congressional District. A competent officer, of the rank of Colonel, will be assigned by this bureau to organize such companies into a regiment, if there be the requisite number of companies; or into a battalion, if there be less than ten companies; or into two battalion, if deemed preferable.
    1. Commandants will always bear in mind that General Orders No 25, is not only the basis but forms a large portion of these instructions. They will habitually recur to its provisions to aid in the application of the other provisions of this circular.
    2. Commandants will, of course, refer cases of difficulty to this Bureau; but references which bear on their face that they are rather to avoid due responsibility of labor, will be returned without remarks.
    3. The duty of the commandants of conscripts is in accordance with these instructions, to maintain and invigorate the industrial production of the Confederacy, and supply its armies with men. This duty must be performed, or our struggle for independence and liberty will fail.
    By order of Col. J. S. Preston, Supt.
    my 14—t2
    C. H. DUFFIELD, A. A. Gen.