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Confederate Congress.


Wednesday, January 18, 1865.

Prayer by the Rev. Dr. Read, of the Presbyterian Church.

On resolution, by Mr. Walker, of Alabama, the privileges of the floor of the Senate were extended to Captain Raphael Semmes during his stay in the city.

Mr. Sparrow offered a resolution calling upon the President to communicate to the Senate information asked for in a resolution of the Senate of last November as to the number of persons in each State exempted from military service by reason of being claimed as State officers; and, also, information in response to resolutions of November 9th as to the number of exemptions and details for express, telegraph and railroad companies. Agreed to.

Senate bill for the re-organization of companies, battalions and regiments was, on motion, by Mr. Sparrow, postponed till half-past 12 o'clock P. M. to-day.

Mr. Oldham introduced a bill, which was referred to the Committee on Commerce, to amend the act of last February imposing regulations on the foreign commerce of the Confederate States.

Mr. Maxwell, of Florida, offered a resolution that the Committee on the Judiciary inquire into the expediency of authorizing the pay due to prisoners in the hands of the enemy to be drawn by parties properly authorized to draw the same.

Mr. Burnett, of Kentucky, offered a resolution, which was agreed to, calling upon the President to furnish to the Senate the amount and kind of subsistence and clothing furnished to officers on duty in the city of Richmond for the last twelve months, with a table showing the names of the officers supplied and the duties to which they are assigned.

A message was received from the House of Representatives announcing the death of the Hon. Simpson H. Morgan, of Texas.

After appropriate remarks by Messrs. Henry, Semmes and Wigfall, the following resolutions, offered by Mr. Wigfall, were adopted, and the Senate adjourned.

‘ "Resolved, That the Senate has received, with deep sensibility, the message from the House of Representatives announcing the death of the Hon. Simpson H. Morgan, late a Representative from Texas.

"Resolved, That the Secretary of the Senate be directed to communicate a copy of the foregoing resolution.

"Resolved, That, in token of respect for the memory of the deceased, the Senate do now adjourn."

House of Representatives.

The House met at 11 o'clock. Prayer by Rev. Mr. Patterson, of the Episcopal Church.

Mr. Cluskey, of Tennessee, by leave, introduced the following:

‘ "Resolved, That the Committee on Elections inquire and report upon the expediency of declaring vacant the seats of members who have absented themselves from the sessions of Congress without leave, and who have announced their intention not to return to their duties." Adopted.

’ The House took up for consideration the bill to provide for the laying of an export duty of five cents in specie on every pound of cotton and tobacco.

Mr. Marshall had moved to recommit the bill to the Committee on Ways and Means, with instructions to report a bill to seize all the cotton and tobacco in the Confederacy on Government account, and to provide just compensation therefore to owners at the present market value.

Mr. Hilton objected to the motion, and hoped the gentleman would withdraw it. There was now afloat in the Confederacy over $2,000,000,000, and to buy all the tobacco alone would increase it to $2,500,000,000. To add the cotton to this would add still more to it. Far better adopt the committee bill and tax the commodities, payable in specie.

Mr. Baldwin, of Virginia, was glad the gentleman from Kentucky had declined to accede to the request to withdraw his motion to recommend, with instructions. We need new men and new measures in the conduct of this war.--New men, he hoped, we would have; and he looked upon this movement as a promise of a new class of measures. As the representative of a people who had furnished as much food to the army as any in the Confederacy, he would agree that his people be taxed in kind two -tenths, three-tenths, five-tenths, in the shape of a direct tax. The people of Virginia are still willing to contribute of their whole resources, as they have heretofore done, and he hoped the rest of the States would do the same. He was one of those who believed that, if the States are united in purpose, they are safe against all odds. And it is time to know if the States are ready to come forward and pledge all they have, and all they are, to the support of the common cause. The question now is, whether the cotton shall become the property of the Confederate Government or the property of the enemy; and who would hesitate in the choice?

Mr. Parkins said that he had referred to the Committee on Ways and Means a resolution making cotton a basis of credit to the Government; and if the gentleman had been as zealous in the committee as in the House he would have known it.

Mr. Baldwin said he had not seen it, but was glad of it. Mr. Lester, of Georgia, said that, at the beginning of the war, the Georgia statesmen had urged this policy.

Mr. Lyon, of Alabama, said that he would go as far as the gentleman in his policy.

Mr. Baldwin said he was glad to find such uniform feeling in the House.

The morning hour having expired, the House went into secret session.


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