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  • “ [72] after the army is organized, shall be made by selection from the army.”

Under the first act, S. Cooper, R. E. Lee, and myself, were brigadiers-general on the 16th of May, when the fourth was approved; and under the third ranked relatively, as we had done in the United States army before secession, when I was brigadier-general, General Cooper colonel, and General Lee lieutenant-colonel in that army. The passage of the fourth act made us generals, and, according to military rule, without affecting this relative rank. It also abolished the grade of brigadier-general in the army to which we belonged. General Cooper, General Lee, and myself, had no commissions if we were not generals. If we were generals, executive action could not give our commissions new dates. The order of rank established by law was-first, J. E. Johnston (brigadier-general U. S. A.); second, S. Cooper (colonel U. S. A.); third, A. S. Johnston (colonel U. S. A.); fourth, R. E. Lee (lieutenant-colonel U. S. A.); G. T. Beauregard (captain U. S. A.). The change in the legal arrangement was made by my removal from the first place on the list to the fourth.

Information of these nominations, and their confirmation, came to me at the same time. On receiving it, I wrote to the President such a statement as the preceding, and also expressed my sense of the wrong done me. But, in order that sense of injury might not betray me into the use of language improper from an officer to the President, I laid aside the letter for two days, and then examined it dispassionately, I believe; and was confident that what it

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