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Confederate Congress.
first session.

Senate. Monday, March 31, 1862.
On motion of Mr. Sparrow it was:

Resolved, That the Secretary of War be requested to inform the Senate whether any of the surgeons or as instant surgeons now in the Confederate service give any portion of their time to private practice, and if so, has the same been done by the authority or sanction of the War Department.

A bill from the House of Representatives, to enable the States their quotes of the war tax to pay the same into the Treasury, was passed.

A bill recommended by the Secretary of the Treasury to increase the clerical force of the Treasury Department, was passel.

Mr. Hill, of Ga., presented a report from the Judiciary Committee adverse to omitting the heads of Departments to and privileges of the Senate.

A bill to reorganize the C. S. Navy, and provide for the appointment of four Commodores, was passed.

The House resolutions, authorizing the appointment of a joint committee of one from each State, in both branches of Congress, to report a bill embodying the Presidents recommendation of a conscript system, and also to develop the mineral resources of the Confederacy, and to establish foundries, ordnance establishments, &c., was taken up and read.

Mr. Clarke, of Mo. said this conscript system had already been referred to the Senate committee, with the President's recommendation on the subject. He asked if the committee were considering the subject, and if it was likely to report at an early day.

Mr. Sparrow, of La., chairman of the committee, reported that the committee were engaged upon the subject, and would report by bill at an early day.

Mr. Clarke said the committee provided for in the House resolution would be unwieldy and slow in its action, on account of its numbers--13 from each body--16 in all He therefore bored for the present to lay the resolution on the table, in the meanwhile to wait for the report of the Military Committee.

Mr. Sparrow thought it better to act upon the resolution now. It covers a great many other important subjects, upon all of which the Congress ought to act speedily. Still the question should be inquired into whether it is expedient, or whether our form of government permits this kind of joint action upon great measures.

Mr. Clark said that under these circumstances and considerations he would withdraw his motion to lay on the table.

Mr. Burnett, of Kentucky, renewed the motion, and thought the adoption of this resolution would not expedite the action of Congress; it was more calculated to retard. He believed these special committees were the curses of legislation. He never knew any good to some of them or of large committees.

Mr. Brown, of Mist., thought the appointment of a special committee, such as called for, would be a reflection of imputation upon the Military Committee, and for this reason he was opposed to it.

Mr. Hill, of Ga., said in his opinion it was wrong to appoint a committee of this size, for the simple reason that it could not act with expedition. He, however, thought it involved a matter of such vital importance as to warrant immediate action. He suggested a modification of the resolution so as to refer the matter to be considered by both Military Committees or the Senate and House of Representatives combined into one joint committee.

The resolution was laid over indefinitely, and the Senate went into secret session.

House of Representatives. Monday, March 31, 1862.
The House met at 12 o'clock, and was opened with prayer by Rev. Dr. Moore. Journal of Saturday read.

The Chair announced the appointment of the following gentlemen on the Military Committee, under the resolution passed on Saturday to increase that committee from "nine" to "thirteen," viz: Kentucky, Eli M. Bruce; Louisiana, Mr. Villers; Texas, Mr. Wilcox; Florida, Mr. Hilton; Mr. Chambers, of Miss, in place of Mr. Davis, of Miss, from further service on the committee.

Mr. Dargan presented a memorial from citizens of Mobile, which he asked to have referred to the committee on Military Affairs. It was so referred.

Mr. Foster, of Ala. introduced a bill entitled an act to encourage the manufacture of iron and copper and the production of ore. He asked the reference of the bill to the Committee on Naval Affairs, and that be printed. Agreed to.

Also, the following resolution:

Resolved, That the Secretary of War be requested to report to this House the amount of army clothing, camp equipage, ordnance, and ordnance stores, subsistence stores, and the number and appraised value of cavalry and archery horses, lost, destroyed, or captured by the enemy since the beginning of the war; and also the aggregate cost of subsistence supplies heretofore purchased, and the quantities of the several kinds thereof now in store.

Mr. Johns. of Tenn., opposed the resolution, on the grounds of an inadequate clerical force in the War Department. It would impose labor upon that Department without any special object to be accomplished.

Mr. Foster thought that the information asked for in the resolution was important, and should be in possession of the House.

Mr. Smith, of Va., was not opposed to enlist upon the Departments for information, when that information related to matters requiring immediate legislation.

Mr. Atking moved to lay the resolution on the table, and the vote being taken the motion was agreed to.

A massage was received from the Senate announcing that body had agreed to the following bills, previously passed by the House, viz: A bill to authorize the President to increase his personal staff; a bill to authorize the States assuming the payment of their quota of the war tax to pay in the same.

Mr. Moore, of Ky., moved a suspension of the rule requiring the call of the States, with a view to a call of the committees. Not agreed to.

Mr. Curry, of Ala., offered a resolution, that hereafter the House meet at 11 o'clock A. M., and called the question.

The ayes and noes were demanded on the resolution, and resulted, ayes 47, noes 36 So the resolution was agreed to.

Mr. Royston, of Ark, presented a communication on the subject of mail routes; which, without reading, was referred to the Committee on Post Offices and Post-Roads.

Mr. Holt, of Ga., asked the unanimous consent of the House to report an important bill from the Committee on Ways and Means. Objected to.

Mr. Bruce, of Ky, offered a resolution that when the House adjourns on Monday, the 7th day of April, 1862, it adjourn to meet again on Tuesday, the 8th day of April, 1862

The Chair decided that the resolution was not in order.

Mr. Macken, of Ky, presented a memorial on claims; which, without being read, was referred to the Committee on Claims.

Mr. Crockett, of Ky., offered the following resolution; which was agreed to:

Whereas. the President of the United States, in his late message to Congress, recommended to the border slave States of this Confederacy now in the military occupation of the United States, the adoption of a system of gradual emancipation; and whereas, the so called Union citizens of said States may attempt to carry into execution the recommendation of the President — to counteract which.

Resolved, That the Committee on the Judiciary be instructed to inquire into the expediency of prohibiting by law the importation of slaves, for merchandize or other wise, into any of the other States of this Confederacy from any State or States that may adopt a system of gradual emancipation.

Mr. Chambers, of Miss., presented a letter and an account, which, without reading, he asked to be referred to the Committee on Claims.

Mr. Clapp, of Miss., offered a series of joint resolutions with reference to the prosecution of the war and other matters, which he presented as a substitute for the series of resolutions offered by Mr. Foote several days since. Laid on the table.

Mr. Smith, of N. C., gave notice that he should move to take up the report of the Committee on Elections, in the contested election cats between A. H. Garland and J. B. Johnson, of Ark., to morrow at 1 o'clock.

Mr. Mills of S. C., submitted a communication from the Quartermaster-General, which he moved to have printed and referred to the Military Committee. Motion agreed to.

Also, a communication from the Chief of Ordnance in reference to an increase of pay of Chief Armorer. Referred.

Also, a resolution that the Committees on Military and Naval Affairs have the privilege of reporting at any time during the sessions. Upon this resolution a point of order was raised, which was sustained by the Chair.

Mr. Atking, of Tenn., offered a resolution that the Speaker call the States for memorials, resolutions, &c, on Monday of each week, and on another day, during the continuance of the present session. Not agreed to.

Mr. Foote offered the following resolution:

Resolved, That the President be requested, if he shall deem it compatible with the public interest, to direct the Secretary of War to send to this House a copy of the official report of Gen. A. Sidney Johnston, to the interrogatories propounded to him by the order of the President touching the recent military disasters at Fort Donelson and elsewhere. Also, a copy of Brig. Gen. Gidson J. Pillow's supplementary report in regard to the Fort Donelson affair, with the attendant documents. Agreed to.

Also, a resolution, as follows:

Resolved, That the President be requested to direct the Secretary of War to respond to the interrogatories heretofore propounded by the House, so his immediate predecessor in office, touching the recent military disasters at Fort Henry and Fort Donelson, and the surrender of the city of Nokesville into the hands of the enemy, if he shall deem it compatible with the public interest that said interrogatories shall be answered.

Mr. Foot stated that it was now nearly three weeks since these interrogatories were propounded to the late Secretary of War, and no answer to them had been received. In the President knew of any reason why they should not be answered, of course the House was prepared to acquiesce. The resolution was agreed to.

Mr. Foote also submitted the following resolution:

Resolved, That a committee be appointed by the Speaker of this House to consist of five members, charged with the duty of inquiring into alleged accuses in the medical department of the army, the defects in the system, if such exist, and failures in the administration of the department.

Agreed to.

Also, a resolution in reference to the printing of the Journal of the Provisional Congress, and the acts of its last session. This resolution was discussed at some length by Messrs. Dupre, Holt, and Conrad; when, the question being called upon if, Mr. Foote, with the consent of the House, withdrew it.

Mr. Currin, of Tenn., presented two designs for a Confederate flag; which were referred to the Committee on Flag and Seal.

Mr. Herbert, of Texas, moved a reconsideration of the vote by which the bill offered by him on Friday last, to authorize the Secretary of War to receive into the Confederate service a regiment for the protection of the frontier of Texas, was referred to the Committee on Military Affairs. The motion to reconsider was agreed to; but the bill no being at hand, its consideration was postponed.

Mr. Staples, of Va., offered the following resolution, which was adopted by the House.

Resolved, That the Committee on Military Affairs inquire into the expediency of reporting a bill authorising the appointment of a special commission, to proceed to the counties constituting the military district lately under the command of Brigadier Generals Floyd and who, and hear proof of claims against the Government for provisions and scores, clothing and other articles furnished the armies of the Confederate States.

Mr. Lyons, of Va., offered a resolution that the Senate be requested to return to this House the resolution fixing the time for adjournment. Laid on the table.

Mr. then moved that the House go into secrets session, and the Doorkeeper was ordered to clear the floor.

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