to the States.
There was scarcely any gun powder save 60,000 pounds, mainly old cannon powder, at Norfolk
And there were practically no arms for cavalry, no fixed ammunition nor percussion caps
, no accoutrements—cartridge boxes, knapsacks, haversacks, etc.—no saddles and bridles, no artillery harness, no adequate stores of shoes, nor of horse-shoes
, nor provision of the many minor articles of equipment required by an army in the field.
Of special machinery for ordinance use there was none save that for the manufacture of small arms at Harper's Ferry
This was saved, though somewhat damaged by fire, when the armory was abandoned by the U. S. officers in charge; this machinery was removed to Richmond, Va.
, and Fayetteville, N. C.
, where it was set up and operated.
At first, all arms and ordinance supplies of the United States
were claimed by the several seceding States, in which they were found, and no little delay was caused by the necessity for negotiating their transfer to the custody of the Confederacy
The first steps towards provision for ordnance needs were taken by the Confederate government while it was still at Montgomery
, Ala. Col.
) Josiah Gorgas
, who had been an ordnance officer in the U. S. army, was commissioned as Chief
of the Ordnance Bureau, and near the end of February, 1861, Capt.
) Raphael Semmes
was sent to New York and Maj. (afterwards Lieut.-Col.
) Caleb Huse
with instructions to buy arms, gun powder and munitions.
For a few weeks the supplies bought by Capt. Semmes
came South through the as yet unbroken channels of commerce, but naturally this very soon ceased, before any important results had been attained.
found no very large supplies upon the European
market, and for the most part, had to make contract for future delivery; but by December, 1861, he had sent over many thousand stand of modern rifled muskets, which, with other supplies, were got safely through the Federal
blockade, and thereafter he remained at his post up to the close of the war, his shipments being of incalculable value all through 1862, ‘63 and ‘64.
Originally furnished with a credit of £ 10,000 only, he very soon made contracts to the extent of nearly fifty times that sum.