The Salmon P. Chase Papers - Vol. 3

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Buford next wrote from the field on February 13, 1863, enlisting support for his appointment as major general and reminding Chase of his desire to see Federal civil authority reinstated over territory seized from the Confederates. Buford to Chase, Feb. 13, 1863 ( Chase Papers, Hist. Soc. of Pa.).

FROM WILLIAM SPRAGUE

Letter in clerk's hand on letterhead stationery, signed by Sprague. Chase Papers, Library of Congress (micro 23:0352).

State of Rhode Island.

Executive Department, Providence October 14 1862

Sir,

Mr. Harris Hoyt a union man of Texas has made a proposition to the Government, as I understand, to go to Texas for the purpose of bringing away a portion of his family now there, relieving his union friends, and at the same time getting important information for the benefit of our Government. He has letters from the President and others, vouching for his good faith. He has proposed to some of our dealers, among whom is Col. Reynolds known to the Treasury Department, to put a few goods on board his vessel, which he will exchange with his union friends for cotton. They desire to procure for Mr. Hoyt a document from the Secretary of the Navy which would enable him to pass the blockading squadron uninterrupted.1

It is of course important to the Government, to get the information which Mr. Hoyt would be able to procure from them, and there can be no objection raised to relieving the union men of Texas. The importance of getting out cotton when it can be done without giving aid and comfort to the enemy, you are well aware. Every bale we can procure helps to keep down the price of cotton, and keeps bread in the mouths of our people; far more advantage to us than the equivalent given for it, and especially if it can be conferred to those who are sympathisers of the Government. I shall esteem any aid you can give Mr. Hoyt an advantage to our whole people, as it will also be to those directly interested. As matters now stand the benefit of all these operations is conferred almost exclusively to foreigners--those interested in arming and breaking up the country.

Again hoping you will aid these parties in this matter,

I am Very Respectfully

Your obedient servant

WM SPRAGUE

To Hon. S. P. Chase Secretary of the Treasury Washington, D.C.

-297-

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