deny the colored men the same pay which the whites received was not only unjust in itself, but was without the authority of law. But, as the evil was a practical one, it should be remedied at once; and he recommended to the Legislature that an appropriation of money be made to supply the deficiency in the payment of our colored troops, so that it would correspond with the pay received by the whites; which recommendation was received with favor by the Legislature, and an act was passed in accordance with the recommendation.
The pay of white volunteers was thirteen dollars a month in money, and three dollars a month for clothing.
The colored troops had been allowed the same amount for clothing, but only seven dollars a month in money.
The Legislature was in session seven days. It met on the 11th of November, and was prorogued on the 18th; during which time it passed the following acts and resolves:—
An act to make up the deficiencies in the Fifty-fourth and Fifty-fifth Regiments.
This act authorized the Governor
to appoint paymasters to proceed to South Carolina
to pay the men, and the Treasurer
of the Commonwealth
to borrow such sums of money, from time to time, as may be necessary to carry the act into effect.
An act to promote enlistments and recruiting.
This act prohibited any person from recruiting except under authority from the Governor
, or the Government
of the United States
; and provided that any person who should entice or solicit men to leave the Commonwealth
to enter military service elsewhere, should be subject to a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars, or imprisonment not exceeding six months.
An act to provide for the payment of bounties for volunteers.
This provided, 1st, That the Governor
might offer to pay a bounty of $325 to each volunteer who should enlist for three years or the war, and should duly be mustered into the service of the United States
and credited to the quota of the Commonwealth
2d, Said bounty to be paid to volunteers already in the service who should re-enlist and be credited to the quota of Massachusetts
3d, It also provided that volunteers thus enlisting might elect, in lieu of the bounty of $325, a bounty