Page images
PDF
EPUB

Jast Annnal Message.

The Navy.

Prizes,

national defence, and to keep ap and supply the requisite military force.

“The Report of the Secretary of the Navy presents a comprehensive and satisfactory exbibit of the affairs of that department and of the naval service. It is a subject of congratulation and laudable pride to our countrymen, that a navy of such vast proportions has been organized in so brief a period and conducted with so much efficiency and success.

“The general exbibits of the Navy, including vessels under construction, on the first of December, 1864, sbows a total of 671 vessels, carrying 4,610 guns, and 510,396 tons-being an actual increase during the year over and above all losses by shipwreck or in battle, of 83 vessels, 167 guns, and 42,427 tons. The total number at this time in the naval service, including officers, is about 51,000. There have been captured by the Navy during the year, 324 vessels, and the whole number of naval captures since hostilities commenced is 1,379, of which 267 are steamers. The gross proceeds arising from the sale of condemned prize property, thus far reported, amount to $14,396,250 51.

“A large amount of such proceeds is still under adjudication and yet to be reported. The total expenditures of the Navy Department, of every description, including the cost of the immense squadrons that have been called into existence, from the 4th of March, 1861, to the 1st of November, 1864, are $238,647,262 35. Your favorable consideration is invited to the various recommendations of the Secretary of the Navy, especially in regard to a navy yard and suitable estabishment for the construction and repair of iron vessels, and the machinery and armature for our ships, to which reference was made in my last annual message.

" Your attention is also invited to the views expressed in the report in relation to the legislation of Congress at its last session in respect to prizes on our inland waters.

"I cordially concur in the recommendation of the Secretary

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

as to the propriety of creating the new rank of Vice-admiral in our naval service.

“Your attention is invited to the report of the PostmasterGeneral, for a detailed account of the operations and financial condition of the Post-Office Department. The postal revenuez for the year ending June 30, 1864, amounted to $12,438,253 78. and the expenditures to $12,644,786 20; the excess of expenditures over receipts being $206,532 42.

“ The views presented by the Postmaster-General on the subject of special grants by the Government in aid of the establishment of new lines of ocean mail steamships, and the policy he recommends for the development of increased commercial intercourse with adjacent and neighboring countries, should receive the careful consideration of Congress.

"It is of noteworthy interest that the steady expansion of population, improvement and governmental institutions over the new and unoccupied portions of our country have scarcely been checked, much less impeded or destroyed by our great civil war, which, at first glance, would seem to have absorbed almost the entire energies of the Nation.

" The organization and admission of the State of Nevada has been completed in conformity with law, and thus our excellent system is firmly established in the mountains which once seemed a barren and uninhabitable waste between the Atlantic States and those which have grown up on the coast of the Pacific Ocean.

“ The Territories of the Union are generally in a condition of prosperity and growth. Idaho and Montana, by reason of their great distance and the interruption of communication with them by Indian hostilities, have been only partially organized; but it is understood that those difficulties are about to disappear, which will permit their governments, like those of the others, to go into speedy and full operation.

"As intimately connected with and promotive of this mate. rial growth of the Nation, I ask the attention of Congress to

Annual Message.

Public Lands.

Pacific Railways and Telegraph.

the valuable information and important recommendation relating to the public lands, Indian affairs, the Pacific Railroad, and mineral discoveries contained in the report of the Secretary of the Interior, which is herewith transmitted, and which report also embraces the subjects of the patents, pensions, and other topics of public interest pertaining to bis Department.

“The quantity of public land disposed of during the five quarters ending on the 30th of September last, was 4,221,342 acres, of which 1,538,614 acres were entered under the Homestead law. The remainder was located with military land warrants, agricultural script certified to States for railroads, and sold for cash. The cash received from sales and location fees was $1,019,446. The income from sales during the fiscal year ending June 30, 1864, was $678,007 21, against $136,077 95, received during the preceding year. The aggregate number of acres surveyed during the year has been equal to the quantity disposed of, and there are open to settlement about 133,000,000 acres of surveyed land.

"The great enterprise of connecting the Atlantic with the Pacific States by railways and telegraph lines has been entered upon with a vigor that gives assurance of success, notwithstanding the embarrassments arising from the prevailing bigh prices of materials and labor. The route of the main line of the road has been definitely located for one hundred miles westward from the initial point at Omaha City, Nebraska, and a preliminary location of the Pacific Railroad of California has been made from Sacramento eastward to the great bend of Mucker river, in Nevada. Numerous discoveries of gold, silver and cinnabar mines have been added to the many heretofore known, and the country occupied by the Sierra Nevada and Rocky Mountains and the subordinate ranges now teens with enterprising labor which is richly remunerative. It is believed that the products of the mines of precious

Last Annual Message.

The Indian System.

Pensions.

metals in that region have, during the year reached, if not exceeded, $100,000,000 in value.

“It was recommended in my last annual message, that our Indian system be remoddled. Congress, at its last session, acting upon the recommendation, did provide for reorganizing the system in California, and it is believed that under the present organization the management of the Indians there will be attended with reasonable success. Much yet remains to be done to provide for the proper government of the Indians in other parts of the country, to render it secure for the advancing settler and to provide for the welfare of the Indian. The Secretary reiterates his recommendations, and to them the attention of Congress is invited.

“The liberal provisions made by Congress for paying pensions to invalid soldiers and sailors of the Republic, and to the widows, orphans and dependent mothers of those who have fallen in battle, or died of disease contracted, or of wounds received in the service of their country, have been diligently administered.

“There have been added to the pension rolls during the year ending the thirtieth day of June last, the names of 16,770 invalid soldiers, and of 271 disabled seamen, making the present number of army invalid pensioners 22,767, and of navy invalid pensioners 712. Of widows, orphans and mothers, 22,198 bave been placed on the army pension rolls, and 248 on the navy rolls.

“The present number of Army pensioners of this class is 25,433, and of Navy pensioners 793. At the beginning of the year, the number of revolutionary pensioners was 1,430 Only twelve of them were soldiers, of whom seven have since died. The remainder are those who, under the law, receive pensions because of relationship to revolutionary soldiers.

“During the year ending the thirtieth of June, 1864, $4,504,616 92 have been paid to pensioners of all classes.

“I cheerfully commend to your continued patronage thu

Last Annual Message.

Agricultural Department.

The Rebellion

benevolent institutions of the District of Columbia, which have hitherto been established or fostered by Congress, and respectfully refer for information concerning them, and in relation to the Wasbington Aqueduct, the Capitol, and other matters of local interest to the report of the Secretary.

"The Agricultural Department, under the supervision of its present energetic and faithful head, is rapidly commending itself to the great and vital interest it was intended to advance. It is peculiarly the People's Department, in which they feel more directly concerned than in any her, I commend it to the continued attention and fostering care of Congress.

“ The war continues. Since the last annual message, all the important lines and positions then occupied by our forces l'ave been maintained, and our armies have steadily advanced, thus liberating the regions left in the rear, so that Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, and parts of other States have again produced reasonably fair crops.

“ The most remarkable feature in the military operations of the year, is General Sherman's attempted march of three hundred miles directly through insurgent regions. It tends to show a great increase of our relative strength, that our General-in-chief should feel able to confront and hold in check every active force of the enemy, and yet to detach a wellappointed, large army to move on such an expedition. The result not being yet known, conjecture in regard to it is not here indulged.

'Important movements bave also occurred during the year to the effect of moulding society for ductility in the Union. Although short of complete success, it is much in the rigbt direction that twelve thousand citizens in each of the States of Arkansas and Louisiana, bave organized loyal State governments with free Constitutions, and are earnestly struggling to maintain and administer them.

"The movement in the same direction, more extensive,

« PreviousContinue »