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call your attention to a few facts I shall draw from NOTES ON OUR ARMY. these sources, as well as to the contrasts I wish to No. IV.

present between them and the similar estimates for

the British service, for 1843. "An Army is a collection of armed men, obliged to obey

The gross estimate to pay, clothe and subone man."– Locke.

sist our whole Army, including officers, with TO THE Hon. Thomas H. Benton.

7,870 rank and file, for the year commenHaying been so fortunate as to secure a copy of cing the 1st July, 1844, is*


335,67 the “ Army Register” for 1844, I shall be enabled Cost per Soldier in our service, 1 year,

Cost of our Staff for the same year,

520,249,00 in my future calculations and estimates to use

Or a little under one-fifth of the whole figures from official sources, which will be more accurate in details than I could otherwise make cost of the Army. them. It is impossible for one who has no access

Cost per soldier in our service, 1 year, deducting the Staff,

$269,44 to official records, to calculate, with accuracy, pay and allowances of officers of our Army, par- Estimates for the British service for the ticularly in the Staff, unless he be skilled in the year commencing 1st April, 1843, for the science of abstruse mathematics, and the moral same purposes, with a force of 88,660 rank

and file, t

$23,862,995,00 binding force of certificates of honor, which ac

Cost per soldier in the British service

269,15 counting officers have decided to be matters of Cost of Staff, British service, same year, 854,455,00 form. I mean to implicate no one by this remark, or about one twenty-eighth of the whole por would I accuse any one of criminal deception; cost of the Army ! but I have so frequently heard it remarked by those

Cost per soldier, 1 year, in the British serwho are the recipients of these almost incompre- vice, deducting the Staff,

259,50 hensible and inexplicable allowances, that“ it would

From these estimates and results no one can renerer do for the Army to be paid in round sums, sist the conclusion, that our Staff is enormously or by salaries, as we now receive the greater part large and expensive, compared with the line of our of our pay in lieu of allowances which Congress Army. Including all the branches of our service, cannot understand, and a reduction would certainly it appears that we pay, per soldier, $335,67 a year. follow if the gross amount were presented to Deducting the cost of our Staff, it is reduced to view,"that I am almost convinced they feel ashamed $269,44,-showing that an increase of $66,23, per of the truth, and this conviction is strengthened by soldier, per annum, or a little under twenty-five per the knowledge that I should be, if placed under cent is added to the cost of our soldier for the supsimilar circumstances. The remark applies, un port of a Staff. In the British service, we find doubtedly, with much force to a large number of the cost of the soldier is $269,15. Deducting the the officers of our Army, or, rather, those who Staff, it is reduced to $259,50. Showing an inhave the titles of officers, but who have no more crease of only $9,65, or less than four per cent on connection with the Army in a military point of the cost of the soldier to support their Staff. riew, and no more feeling in common with it, than It will be difficult, I conceive, to find any good have the clerks in the different executive depart-reason to show the necessity of maintaining a ments of the government. But when we come to Staff in our service at a cost of one-fifth of the apply it to the military branch of the service, a whole expense of the Army, when in the British difference in feeling and principle will be found. I service it only costs one twenty-eighth. am convinced a large majority of the officers of These results show one of two things, either that branch of the service would express very dif- that our Staff is unnecessarily large and expenferent views if called on, and I must confess I sive, or that it requires six times the expense to should feel mortified to hear of one who would pre- get the same Staff duties performed in our service fer the present mode of pay for the sole reason that it does in the British. In either case it is that he was now deceiving Congress, and if the time that a corrective was applied, and if the whole fact were known, his allowances would be reduced. number of our Staff officers are required to do the Yet I have never heard any other reason advanced same duties one-sixth of them would do in the in favor of the present absurd and inconvenient British service, the government cannot too soon method of paying the officers of our Army for their supply their places by those who would be more services. No other servants or agents of the go- willing and more competent to discharge those duvernment are paid in the same way,—the plan ties and at a much less expense to the country. having been long since abolished in the Navy; and We now have a greater number of officers in I know of no reason whiy it should not be in the our Staff, with an Army of a little over seven Array

thousand, than we had when our Army exceeded Another document, containing the estimates for twelve thousand—from 1838 to 1842. our service for the year commencing the 1st of

* 28th Congress, 1st Session, House Doc.-No. 6. July, 1844, has fallen into my hands, and I must + United Service Journal for March, 1843.

This increase has been made by the appointment Colonels; one of them is stationed in Philadelphia of Brevet Second Lieutenants to most of these as chief of the clothing branch of the QuarterStaff corps, in open violation of law, and without master's department, a sort of Tailor General to the slightest necessity for their services, when the Army. He supervises the purchase and issue they really might have been advantageously dispo- of all articles of clothing and camp and garrison sed of in supplying the places of some of the nu- equipage, but it must not be inferred that he dirties merous officers legally detached on Staff duties. his hands by receiving and issuing these articles An act of Congress of the 29th of April, 1812, himself; that would be beneath a Colonel in the allowed the appointment of Brevet Second Lieu- Army. He is a link in the chain by which it is tenants from the graduates of the Military Aca- effected; but all small matters are either left updemy, when there were no vacancies in the Army, done by him, or done by another; he even declines and provided for their promotion when vacancies condescending so far as to sign an invoice of prooccurred; but it also “provided, that there shall perty forwarded, and contents himself with the renot be more than one supernumerary officer to any flection that a letter accompanying it, from so great one company at the same time.” Yet, year after a man, is all sufficient. The Quartermaster Genyear, we see an open violation of this proviso, eral approves requisitions for supplies, forwards which has never been repealed, by the appointment them to this supervisor, or Tailor General, and he of supernumerary Brevets to these different Staff orders a Military Storekeeper to comply with them. corps of the Army, which are already overstocked This storekeeper prepares the supplies, makes inwith officers, and which have no companies to which voices, and turns them over to a third person, a such officers can be attached as the law requires. Captain and assistant Quartermaster, who forwards

I must again pay my respects to the Quarter- them to their destination. This is all a very permaster's department of our Army, which I hope fect arrangement, and the results prove it; for our will not consider itself as slighted in being so long supplies, notwithstanding all this circumlocation, overlooked, after the assiduous attention which was are generally very good and punctually furnished; paid it in my last. In 1814, when we had an Ar- but it may puzzle some to account for the necessity my of 60,000 rank and file, and a portion of of this long method of doing a short thing. This them in the field, our organization allowed fifty having one officer to inspect, one to procure and officers in the Quartermaster's department. In issue, and another to transport, when one of them 1844, when our Army is scarcely to exceed 7,000 could do it all as well. Several good reasons may rank and file, we have an organized Quartermas- be given, and I will venture two or three : I canter's department, with thirty-seven officers; that not flatter myself they are correct, for I confess is, with one-ninth of the force, we have three- my ignorance of the reasons which operate in fafourths of the Staff. According 10 this ratio, if vor of performing the duties of this " scientific our whole Army is disbanded, it will appear that at corps” in the peculiar way in which they are done, least thirty officers will be necessary in the Quar- but I have the charity to suppose there are reasons, termaster's department. Then, what a fine time and I only hope I have discovered the true ones. they would have; all would do what two-thirds The Secretary of War, previous to the present now do-nothing,—or at least so near notbing, that incumbent, has told us the staff must be in proportheir occupation at public business is scarcely suf- tion to the extent of country over which the Arficient to prevent ennui, and their only trouble is my is spread, “ and, reasoning from analogy, which

, to find ways and means for spending their pay. however, does not always lead to certainty." I Again, in 1815, when our Army was reduced to a infer, that supplies to be sent thousands of miles, force of fourteen regiments, or equal to that, we require more officers and more rank to secure their were allowed eight officers in the Quartermaster's safety than those which are sent hundreds, and in department. Now, with the same number of re- the direct ratio of the distance. This appears to giments, we have thirty-seven.

me a natural inference, but for fear it may not be If more be necessary to prove the position which correct and may not apply to all cases, I will offer I have assumed, the unnecessary size and expense another which has been suggested to me. In vierof this department, it can be readily found by refer- ing many of the beautiful and admirable esperience to the positions and duties of those holding ments in electricity, a mere utilitarian would be appointments in it.

led at onee to inquire the use of a long and circuiFirst, we have the chief of the bureau, a Briga- tous conductor by which an observer, near the madier General, who distinguished himself in the chine, receives the same shoek he would by touchfield before assuming the arduous and responsible ing the discharger with his hand. This, however, duties which he has long continued to perform with would not show him one of the most singular and so much ability, and for which his devotion to bu- remarkable properties of the fluid, its instantanésiness so peculiarly fit him. All acknowledge the ous passage, through space, by the intervention of importance of his office and the success which at- a conductor. And thus it is with this department. tends his administration of it. We next have two. We are struck with the beautiful arrangement by

which duties can be divided and subdivided with-official business, and so much spare time in that out loss and with little delay. It is true, we might enterprising land might be so disposed of as to remove nine-tenths of its officers and secure the secure a subaltern's independence and possibly his same eficiency and, possibly, a slight saving of happiness, both of which are out of his reach so time in the execution of their duties; but then we long as an aspiration for military renown confines should destroy all the beauties of the system ; there him to his profession. A Captain in Baltimore is would be nothing to admire and wonder at, -no- similarly situated, except that he is nominally the thing to create astonishment in the minds of unso- Quartermaster at Fort McHenry, three miles off. phisticated beholders. If we destroy any one of Another Captain is reported at Sackett's Harbor, these links in the chain, it becomes necessary to N. Y., when it is known he is in Brownville, unite the two nearest each other, or the current is N. Y., at his private residence, and visits the post destroyed, but when the union is perfected, we per- occasionally, much to the annoyance of the comceive no difference in the result ; and so would it manding officers. One again is at Baton Rouge, be with the Quartermaster's department: strike La., where there are duties which probably occupy out any link, particularly one of those which has him half an hour a day. Another at Buffalo, N. become oxidized from long rest, unite the two next Y., under similar circumstances. One more at and a connection will be formed as perfect as the Fort Monroe, where all bis duties would be wilfirst.

lingly performed by a subaltern for one-tenth the I will suggest but one more reason, although compensation. In Savannah, Geo., there is a Capseveral additional ones might be given equally as tain without any earthly necessity for his presence, strong as the foregoing. A large number of the or occupation for his time. And so I might go officers of this department are men of families through the whole list of these Captains, by name, and extensive connections in our eastern cities, without finding any absolute necessity for more and it would be uncomfortable for them to join than three or four at farthest out of the twentytheir companies and do duty at military posts re- eight in the department. The worst feature of the mote from society, and if required to go there to whole business is the fact that twenty of these reside, they would have to live in a style far be- gentlemen have their names at the heads of comDeath what they are accustomed to, besides losing panies, supplying a place which ought to be filled about twenty-five per cent on their pay which they by some efficient and useful man. One of them is now receive under the head of " commutation." kept in Washington City as a clerk in the bureau, Omitting the tailoring department in the city of where the law establishes the number allowed and Philadelphia, which employs one Colonel, one Cap-contemplated no such evasion as this,-an evasion tain, and one Military Storekeeper, we find one it must be regarded. A second is temporarily reColonel in New-York, nominally; he owns a fine ported on the same duty. Of the whole thirty-eight farın on Long Island, or thereabouts, and has a clerk officers in the department, including two storeto do his duties. For several months past he has keepers, not more than six are necessary for the attended Congress to legislate for the country economical and efficient discharge of the duties perand bimself. One Lieutenant Colonel and one Cap- taining to it, and they would not require, and should tain enjoy themselves in the city of Detroit, for not receive such pay and emoluments as are now what purpose I have been unable to ascertain. A allowed to the eight field officers, whose positions Lieutenant Colonel and Captain again in St. Au- are perfect sinecures, and are so considered in the gustine where there are neither purchases nor Army. issues to make. One Major in St. Louis, and a And what is the consequence of clothing these Captain at Jefferson Barracks, within an hour's officers with high military rank, when they are ride. One Major and one Captain are " settling considered in foreign services below the lowest accounts at the Treasury.” One Major in New grade of commissioned officers of the line? A conOrleans. One Captain commands this company at tinual wrangle about rank and command. Put an Plattsburg, N. Y., and receives $34 per month for army in the field with one of these colonels of doing duties which Lieutenants do at many posts teamsters, wagons, carts and mules, and just so for nothing; this is paying rather high for the soon as the officers senior to him in the line are out honor the government derives from being served of the way, he is for assuming the military comby such dignitaries. Another Captain is to be mand, although he is ignorant of the first princifound in the city of Boston, and the nearest troops ples of the recruits' drill. These, and many other to him are at Portsmouth, N. H., where a Lieu- absurdities, which have crept into our military tenant does the duty of Quartermaster without legislation, would, in case of active service in the compensation. Many subalterns would be happy to field, paralyze the efforts of any General in the secure the position of this Boston Captain at one world, and destroy the esprit du corps and discithird the compensation which he receives. I would pline of the best troops ever known. not even decline such a position myself, as I am I must apologize for being compelled to leave confident thirty minutes a day would suffice for all'this “most essential part of the Army proper,” as it was styled, ironically, of course, by our late the encroachments of the Staff. They are not Secretary, but I hope, as my acquaintance has been unmindful of the ancient proverb of the bad an intimate and very agreeable one, I may be able bird,' and have felt how inespedient and perhaps at some future day to renew it under more favora- suicidal it may be for one portion of our small ble auspices.

military establishment, to set itself in array against With due modesty and consideration, and with the faults of another and expose its imperfections a full knowledge of my presumption, in approach to the public eye. Ordinary evils could be paing so princely an establishment, I must beg leave tiently borne ;-a moderate degree of inequality to introduce myself to the “Ordnance Depart- might be overlooked ;-a temporary neglect could ment," and—“hope I don't intrude." It has man- be endured in silence; but, when these evils beaged by some efficient means to give itself an come accumulative, engendering others until their existence and a gradual increase up to its present' name is legion,' forbearance ceases to be a virsize, thirty-five officers, since our peace organiza- tue and whatever may be the consequences, an tion in 1821, when an Ordnance department was not effort at self-vindication seems to be called for, thought necessary. Our law-givers then ignorantly and the truth must be told. supposed that Ordnance duties could in ours, as in “We have seen that by the arrangement now foreign services, be performed by the artillery; but existing in our military establishment, each adminthat idea is now exploded, and in this country it is istrative department is governed by its head situated discovered that scientific (?) men are necessary to in an office called a Burean, at Washington, in perform the mechanical duties of constructing and convenient proximity to the war office, and enjoypreparing ordnance and ordnance stores, and that ing all reasonable facilities for a free intercourse any ignoramus may use them. Next we shall hear with the Secretary of the War Department. This of the scientific mechanic who makes astronomical functionary, frequently changed and therefore uninstruments with which the ignorant philosopher informed and inexperienced in the details and retakes his observations.

quirements of the service, must necessarily call I will delay entering upon the details of the for his information upon the chiefs of the Bureaus; abuses and unnecessary expenses of this depart- and there being no one to question or gainsay them, ment, and its growing arrogance and unimportance it is not surprising that the statements of the said until a future letter. I must beg leave, however, chiefs are received as conclusive facts, undenied to quote here, as a sort of preface, a few remarks and undeniable. Orders are issued accordingly, by an officer of great intelligence and long service. and thus is the Army governed. It requires but a Some of his happiest hours have been passed at modicum of diplomatic tact, a small share of that their delightful arsenals, and in the performance of soft unction which is so plentifully distilled at court, their very light and agreeable duties at a time when for these Bureau chiefs to acquit themselves sucofficers of the line occasionally shared the loaves cessfully on such an arena before the unfledged and fishes, after years of hard service at remote potentate of the war office, and when a measure and cheerless military garrisons. Such temporary is to be carried, that Bureau chief must be a sorry relief is now unknown to us, all such details having apprentice in the courtier's art who could not, with been converted into permanent appointments for all these means and appliances to boot, color his the favored few. He has taken but a slight glance case as he chose and carry his point. In such a at ordnance life, but I hope to present it in such contest, it is easy to see that 'Oily. Gammon will lights as to render it entirely unnecessary for any always be an overmatch for the modest . Mowbray. one to visit an arsenal" to convince him of the And so it has been for years with the Army deabuses which cry loud for correction, and which partments at Washington. are saddled upon the shoulders of the poor unof- "As an illustration of these truths let us look at fending Army. It has no sooner finished a contest the Ordnance Department. Here is a corps of of seven years, without a parallel in history for officers, set apart and invested with rank and its privations and 'hardships, and in which these emoluments, perquisites and privileges,-claiming silk-stocking and boudoir gentlemen took no part, military command when prerogative tempts them, at least after entering the Ordnance department, but disdaining military privations and avoiding marthan it is held up to the execration of the country lial hardships when war is the word. Sachs by these very men, who lived in their carpeted corps is now paid and fed and pampered, for what parlors within princely government edifices, whilst great purpose think you? To take care of the their neglected and abused comrades were wading arms boxed up and stored away in the arsenals, and, in the swamps and morasses, and parching with peradventure, to overlook the artizans who may be the fevers of a tropical clime.

employed to repair them. The duties now perMy worthy friend and valued correspondent says: formed by this corps of officials, aggrandized by “ It is not with an invidious feeling, nor even in a Army rank and endowed with the highest of Army spirit of idle querulousness, that the Line of the emoluments, can all be as well performed by offiArmy are prompted to step forth in opposition to'cers of the artillery, and by so much might the treasury be lightened of its load. The Ordnance ! comely and neat, with large drops in her ears, her A corps, formerly supposed to consist only of the arms bare, according to the custom of Flanders, maimed and the decrepit,--the places in which and her waist a little too embonpoint, diminished by were rarely sought by men conscious of full woollen petticoat of blue, striped with white. On

a very tight corset whose bright red glared upon a powers,-now basking in the sunshine of court such days, she indulged in the coquetry of wearing favor—dandled in the lap of luxury,-has become a shoe on a foot, which wanted neither diminutivethe envy of the hardiest, and its happy votaries, ness nor beauty. So every one who passed her fancying themselves the primary branch of the asked, “who is that pretty creature with the little

child by her side ?" system, and claiming for their corps the appella

And I, with the vanity of a boy of six years, tion of scientific !-are ready to kick away


was delighted and proud of the flattering attention ladder by which they rose, and set up for them- bestowed on my conductress; yes, the days on selves an exclasive caste. Such consequences which we walked out together were to me real fesare natural enough, and officers are scarcely to be tivals, anticipated and longed for with the greatest blamed for seeking places in a corps favored by in- impatience.

It must be confessed however, that to the attracdulgences, enjoying sumptuous quarters, performing tion which the gratification of a childish vanity light and easy duties, and suffering no hardships. afforded, was added a second not less lively. Every If any one suspect this account to be too highly Sunday, the termination of our walk was ihe smoky colored, let him once visit an arsenal ;--let him chamber of a blind old dame, the mother of a there contrast the ample accommodations and ex- comely lad whose modest deportment greatly be

came him. pensive finish of all their quarters with the stinted

As soon as we arrived, there were two kisses apartments allotted to the Line of the Army. Let for Trea, and some little dainty for me. Methinks bim compare the ease and opulence of ordnance I still see the two lovers retreating into the emlife with the constraint, the privation, the remote brasure of a window lighted with small green panes and cheerless stations to which the infantry and of glass, and drawing their straw chairs as near to artillery are doomed, --and he will no longer won

each other as possible. They chatted together der that men, even of high and chivalric spirit, plans radiant with joy, such as

long in a low tone, forming plans without end

we dream of should yield their martial hardihood to the blan- when we are young—and which a happy carelessdishments of luxury, and, satisfied with the tinsel ness, a sweet confidence in the future, present to show of military rank, prefer the parlor to the the fancy, embellished with pure and delightful field. But these seductive influences lead to a

images. train of evils which the Conscript Fathers of our

In the mean time the good old dame would relate

to me some story. I must live to be very old, beRepublic are called upon to correct. The remedy fore I can forget her, with her grey locks, confined must be applied by the power which is paramount by her white cap, her eyes dim and immovable, to the Executive Departments of the Government. her looks full of kindness, and her arms thin and The official functionaries of those Departments are sunburnt emerging from beneath a large red kerindeed placed as guardians and censors of the agents tastic legends, of diabolical adventures and touch

chief. She told of wonderful apparitions, of fanpoder their charge, but 'Quis custodiet ipsos custo

ing traditions; when she approached the catastrodes? There is no recourse but to the Representa-sphe, she would straighten her bended form, her tives of the people. Let the pure and searching eye voice would assume a firmer tone, and her long of simple honesty come to the scrutiny, and there hands, upraised in the air, would fall again on her will be some hope that partiality, favoritism and knees.

Seated before her on a little stool, I would listen extravagance will at length be made to yield to

motionless, with fixed eyes and flushed cheeks, the spirit of economy and justice.” Nous Verrons. scarcely daring to draw my breath. When she


ceased, my sorrow was inexpressible, and I would have given the world to hear her continue.

Among other curious legends, that of “the shepherd's clock” produced upon me a powerful impres

sion. THE LEGEND OF THE SHEPHERD'S CLOCK.. “My child," said the good woman, “there was “ In the southern cross-aisle of the church, near the chapel once at Cambray a beautiful church, such a one of the crucifix, may be seen a clock which is the admira- as you do not look upon now-a-days. Nothing tion of the curious.”—[ Le Glay, Recherches sur l église mé- handsomer was ever seen ; one might have passed

a whole year, yes a whole year in examining all tropolitaine de Cambrai, Ch. vii.

the wonderful things that were there. But the I remember, that in my childhood, my nurse was most precious of all, (it is only a voice down stairs a young Fleming, named Trea, a joyous girl with that you hear my child,) was the clock. The clock large blue eyes, white teeth and fresh and rosy that I have often spent whole hours in admiring cheeks. When Trea was decked out in her “Sun- when I was no larger than you, and was going to day's best," it was a real pleasure to see her, so school with my little basket on my arm and had,

* Translated for the S. L. Messenger from “ Chroniques alas! two good eyes. ft Traditions Surnaturelles de la Flandre-par Mr. S. Henry

That beautiful clock was higher, oh! a great deal Berthoud."

higher than this room. It was made like a little

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