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Before 1860 general orders, circulars, and other directives were sometimes copied. The letters fall into the following distinct time periods. These letters have been reproduced as NARA Microfilm Publication M472, Letters Sent by the Secretary of the Navy to the President and Executive Agencies, 1821-1886. Letters Sent Relating to the Naval Asylum, Navy Hospitals, and the Navy Hospital Fund. Property was acquired in 1826 in Philadelphia for the site of the Naval Asylum, and a building was constructed and opened for occupancy in 1833. 369), transferred all pension business previously handled by the Navy Department to the Office of the Commissioner of Pensions. A brief description is given of the content of each letter. These letters have been reproduced as NARA Microfilm Publication M124, Miscellaneous Letters Received by the Secretary of the Navy, 1801-1884. Letters Received From Commissioned Officers Below the Rank of Commander and From Warrant Officers ("Officers Letters"). After 1865 the Office of Detail, a division of the Bureau of Navigation, handled many of the matters concerning duty assignments and leave for commissioned officers and received the letters from officers on these subjects. Most combined muster rolls and payrolls are for vessels and date between 18, although there are a few dated as late as 1842. Usually, marines and supernumeraries are on separate rolls. There are very few muster or payrolls for the Mexican War period. There is also information concerning places and dates of departures and returns. There is a name index to vessels in the first volume. The second volume nearly duplicates information in the first volume. Monthly Returns of Navy and Marine Corps Officers and Civilians at Shore Establishments. The returns for Bay Point, Port Royal, Beaufort, Baltimore, and Jefferson Barracks for April 1845-June 1866 are bound in one volume with the February 1866-December 1872 returns for Mound City.
Some letters deal with such wartime matters as security at navy yards, joint operations with the Army, distribution of prize money, and treatment of foreigners captured in neutral vessels violating the blockade. 1798-1801--These letters, which amount to over half of the content of the volume, include requests for supplies, powder, ordnance, and the use of Army troops to relieve marine guards on naval vessels and at various towns where French prisoners of war were being held. The volume includes six letters dated from 1843 to 1858. For registers of the letters from 1823 through 1840, see entry 1. 426), prohibited the importation of slaves into the United States after January 1, 1808, and provided that U. naval vessels could seize and bring into port any vessels carrying slaves destined for the United States. 532), authorized the President to make regulations and arrangements for the "safe keeping, support, and removal, beyond the limits of the United States" of Africans seized from slave vessels bound for the United States. Most of the letters were to the commandants of navy yards at Boston, Philadelphia, Washington, Norfolk, and Pensacola; the commandant of the naval station at Baltimore; the Commandant of the Marine Corps, and the Governor of the Naval Asylum; and they authorized the admission of officers, seamen, and marines to Navy hospitals and the Naval Asylum. The letters are also registered in the volumes described in entry 1. A memorandum to four Navy Department bureaus; two letters to the Presidents of the Argentine Naval Commission and the Fare River Shipbuilding Company of Quincy, MA, respectively; and six endorsements to the Office of Naval Intelligence. There are also post-1860 reports of services performed by chaplains. There are name and some subject indexes in the volumes. Both payrolls and muster rolls were signed by the commanding officer and by the purser of the ship or station. With the date of their expirations of service annexed. Filed with the muster rolls and payrolls are lists of officers and crews, receipt rolls, accounts, registers of allotments, reports and returns of officers and crews, and various types of abstracts. There are returns for Baltimore, Bay Point, Beaufort, Boston, Jefferson Barracks, League Island, Mare Island, Mound City, New London, New York, Norfolk, Pensacola, Philadelphia, Port Royal, Portsmouth (NH), and Washington, DC. Arranged for the most part in five overlapping chronological periods and thereunder alphabetically by name of vessel. Register of Bills of Exchange Drawn Upon the Secretary of the Navy ("Bill Books").
Registers to parts of the letters described in entries 3-4, 6-10, 12-13, 15-18, and 20-25. Letters are numbered sequentially within each volume.
This index has been reproduced as part of roll 8 of NARA Microfilm Publication M209, Miscellaneous Letters Sent ("General Letter Books"), 1798-1886. Miscellaneous Letters Sent ("General Letter Books"). The staff of the National Archives and Records Administration has prepared a comprehensive name and subject card index for volumes 1-36. The letters were addressed to merchants, inventors, contractors, accountants, families of naval personnel, former naval officers, civilian employees of the Navy Department, U. Army officials, state officials, applicants for appointments, and a wide range of other non-U. Navy correspondents for the entire period covered by these volumes. There is no index in the second volume (September 1803-June 1821). 610), authorized the Treasurer of the United States to disburse money appropriated for the Navy Department by warrant from the Secretary of the Treasury. Arranged chronologically with some overlapping between the two volumes. There are also a letter of September 16, 1805, discussing U. relations with Spain and plans for offensive and defensive war with that country and a letter of December 22, 1806, proposing that the President withdraw Gen. More than half of the letters and reports were addressed to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the President of the Senate, and the Chairmen of the House and Senate Committees on Naval Affairs and concern such matters as changes in the organization of the Department, increases in rank for naval officers, and pay increases for naval officers and civilian employees. Included are a number of letters to Naval Constructor Josiah Fox and Capt. Most of the letters prior to 1812 were addressed to Capt. There are also press copies of letters to the board for the period January-November 1833 (see entry 16). Many of the letters for 18 were sent to the commanding officer of the Home Squadron in the Gulf of Mexico and concern the prosecution of the war with Mexico. They relate to duty assignments, examinations of officers, promotions, and other personnel matters. Most of the letters from captains commanding at sea consist of despatches or reports concerning shipboard discipline, requests for transfer, desertions, discharges, repair and supply of vessels, arrivals and departures of vessels, and financial matters. In four volumes there are name and subject indexes, which include a brief description of the content of each letter. The series also includes resolutions passed by the House of Representatives and Senate requesting the Secretary of the Navy to prepare reports on naval matters or to make available proceedings of general courts-martial; lists of officers appointed to the Navy; copies of reports, charts, and other documents received from naval officers who commanded exploring expeditions; and other records pertaining to the Navy Department. Other subjects include the placement of advertisements for supplies and equipment, work performed at navy yards, civilian employees at the yards, vessels used in the coast survey, construction of lighthouses, and claims made against the Navy Department. There are name or name and subject indexes in the volumes except those for the years 1882-86. These letters not only greatly exceed in number the letters sent by the Secretary of the Navy to the President and other agencies of the executive branch during this period, but they also reveal more about the Navy Department's daily contacts with the President and executive agencies. Arranged by class of vessel and thereunder by vessel. The title "naval general order" was most frequently used between 18. Arranged by type of directive and thereunder for the most part chronologically. Many of the rolls in this series have the Subject File marking "NA," and were probably segregated from that series because of their size. Arranged for the most part alphabetically by name of navy yard and thereunder chronologically. The lists include regular and acting Navy officers, Marine Corps officers, and clerks. In the last volume there are some entries for January-March 1835 arranged by navy yard. Entries give date, warrant number, name of person in whose favor drawn, amount broken down by appropriation item, and total amount.
The earliest volumes include letters to some naval officials. This series contains letters transmitting documents, letters requesting assistance or information, and letters sent in reply to inquiries. Most of these letters requested that the Secretary of the Treasury furnish these warrants to the Treasurer. A typewritten name and subject index prepared by the Office of Naval Records and Library and a register arranged by subject are in the first volume (July 1798-September 1820). There are also reports of surveys and experiments and of major naval engagements addressed to chairmen of other permanent congressional committees, including the House Committees on Ways and Means and on Appropriations, the Senate Committees on Finance and on Foreign Relations and the House and Senate Committees on Claims. Thomas Tingey, both at the Washington Navy Yard, regarding construction plans for the gunboats. Thomas Tingey who was in charge of the Washington Navy Yard. schooner Grampus, who was ordered to Havana, Cuba, to give testimony concerning slaves captured on the Amistad. Enclosures usually were not copied but sometimes are among the letters received (entry 315). Press Copies of Letters Sent to the Board of Navy Commissioners. During the Civil War period, letters and telegrams regarding the blockade of Southern ports, belligerent rights, "suspicious" or Confederate vessels, contraband, prisoners of war, and prize vessels were addressed to the flag officers commanding the squadrons along the Atlantic coast and the squadrons from the cape of Florida to the Gulf of Mexico. Most of these telegrams were sent through the War Department Telegraph Office by the Secretary of the Navy and his bureau chiefs to naval officers, including commandants of navy yards and the Superintendent of the U. A few were sent to private citizens on unofficial matters and to Members of Congress regarding midshipmen candidates. Detailed reports of unusual occurrences or disputes between officers and foreign officials are included, frequently accompanied by letters from subordinate officers, U. and foreign diplomatic officials, foreign military personnel, and private individuals. The other volume, July 1832-April 1836, has a name index. agents for captured Africans on the African coast and from officers of the American Colonization Society concerning the slave trade and conditions at the reception agencies at Shebro Island, Cape Mesurado, Sierra Leone, and Monrovia; reports from U. marshals along the eastern coast of the United States concerning captured Africans received in their districts; reports from U. district attorneys regarding provisions made for Africans in southern states; and reports from the Fourth Auditor of the Treasury, Navy agents, and foreign bankers concerning the sale of captured slave vessels. The action taken by the Secretary is frequently noted, and sometimes petitions or other enclosures and letters of reply by the Secretary are also included. Some of the letters were written in response to requests of the Secretary for the Board's comments on proposals for vessel improvements and inventions submitted to him by Navy officers and private individuals. The majority of the letters predating the Civil War were received from offices of the Treasury Department, including letters forwarded by the Secretary of the Treasury from the Coast Survey Office, and relate to audit and revision of Navy agents' and pursers' accounts, allowances of pay and rations for naval officers, and the detail of officers to the Coast Survey. citizens and their property, forwarded despatches received from State Department officials stationed abroad, and requested that naval officers perform diplomatic functions such as securing ratification of treaties. The volume relating to third-rate vessels is for January 1889-November 1890, and that relating to fourth-rate vessels is for July-December 1890. The general orders issued before 1863 were unnumbered and usually not printed, but beginning in 1863 they were numbered continuously within series (with the exception of a small number of unnumbered orders and general orders for the period 1866-97) and printed. Entries for individual directives give date, subject, and, when applicable, number. A few rolls still remain in the Subject File (see entry 502). These are chiefly payrolls, with some lists and a few muster rolls. Some just record the names and positions of Navy and Marine Corps officers and of passengers, if any. Entries give warrant number, date, name of person to whom issued, often the purpose, and amount broken down by Navy and Marine Corps appropriation items.
1813-14--Many of the letters are concerned with the problems of delivering cannons to the naval vessels fighting on the Great Lakes. There are two volumes numbered 32, the second being a corrected version of the first. There are name indexes in volumes 2, 5-7, and 12-17 and name and subject indexes in volumes 1, 3, 4, and 8-11. There are no letters for the period August 12, 1829-December 31, 1835; presumably they were copied in a volume 2, which is missing. The volume has a name and subject index, arranged alphabetically by initial letter of surname, position title, or subject, which contains a brief description of the content of each letter. These letters relate to the same subjects as the letters described in entry 15. The letters sent have been reproduced as NARA Microfilm Publication M480, Letters Sent by the Secretary of the Navy to Chiefs of Navy Bureaus, 1842-1886. "Confidential" and Other Letters, Telegrams, and Cablegrams Sent to Commanding Officers of Squadrons and Vessels. For earlier letters to commanding officers of squadrons and vessels, see entry 3; for confidential letters to them, March 1861-October 1876, see entry 25. Generally, the letters are addressed to commanders of squadrons or ships or naval attachés in foreign locations. 52), corrections to codes and war portfolios, visits of foreigners to naval vessels and yards, the disposition of German cruisers held at Philadelphia and interned personnel, war mobilization plans, the Navy's 1918 shipbuilding program, and the sending of cipher messages and confidential publications. "Confidential" Communications Sent Relating to World War I. The communications concern the general conduct of World War I, including such matters as the preparation of merchant vessels to receive armed guards, operation of the armed guard vessels, construction of submarines and development of antisubmarine devices, installation of sound detection devices on naval vessels, vessel collisions, intelligence work in the Far East, oil shipments to Great Britain, and the return of disabled soldiers to the United States on naval transports. Press Copies of Communications Sent Concerning the Construction of Battleships for the Argentine Naval Commission. A number of letters contain reports from lieutenants and passed midshipmen who led or participated in exploring and relief expeditions during the period 1839-84; other such letters are among those described in entry 40. Hunter from Trieste on the movements of the combined fleet of Sardinia and Naples and the Austrian Army in June 1848 and a letter of April 23, 1850, from Lt. Page describing conditions in China after the death of Emperor Kaou Kwang. There are reports from officers assigned to special duty, including, Comdr. Henry Glass, and others who sought to preserve peace between white miners and Indians in the vicinity of Sitka, AK, 1879-82. Often the index entries include descriptions of the contents of individual letters. There is an incomplete calendar of the letters from captains relating to South America, 1825-34, in the Subject File (see entry 502). Arranged chronologically with some overlapping between volumes. The correspondence that these memorandums accompanied is interspersed among the general correspondence of Record Groups 24, 38, 80, and 19. Additional Marine Corps muster rolls are in Records of the U. The muster and payrolls, except the unbound ones, are available on NARA Microfilm Publication T829, Miscellaneous Records of the Office of Naval Records and Library. Muster Rolls and Payrolls for Shore Establishments. Usually, if there is only one volume for a yard or station, there are muster rolls and payrolls bound together. Payrolls of persons employed by the Bureau of Equipment and Recruiting on Jeanette, 1879 and n.d. Some lists for the Civil War period were prepared at a later date by the Treasury Department to fill gaps in the records.
1815-24--These letters pertain to various subjects, including a military survey of the coast of North Carolina, the detail of Army officers as members of courts-martial convened to try Marine Corps officers, and the transport of Army officers on naval vessels. Later letters to the Secretary of War are among those described in entry 20. Arranged alphabetically by initial letter of surname or occasionally position of addressee. A typewritten name and subject index prepared by the Office of Naval Records and Library is in volume 1, and name indexes prepared contemporaneously by the Secretary's office are in the other volumes. Volume 18 has both a name and a name and subject index. 206), provided for the construction of not more than 15 gunboats. Name indexes in volumes 1-7 are arranged alphabetically by initial letter of surname. Each volume includes name and subject index and an additional index for the second volume (volume 3) has been inserted in the volume. For the period covered by this series there are no handwritten copies except for a few inserted in this volume. The communications in these volumes frequently contain orders detailing routes to be followed, ports to be entered, and passengers to be taken on board and instructions regarding the conduct of officers newly assigned to the command of squadrons and the extension of courtesies to American and foreign dignitaries. The messages relate for the most part to operations during the Spanish-American War and the Philippine Insurrection and to operations in response to the political situation in various parts of Latin America and other parts of the world. Scientific matters are the subjects of letters received from officers assigned to the Depot of Charts and Instruments, the Naval Observatory, and the Nautical Almanac Office during the 1830s, 1840s, and 1850s. Also, lieutenants who traveled to various parts of Europe submitted lengthy reports of their observations of foreign naval vessels and shipyards upon their return to the country. Alexander Murray, commander of a special squadron to Russia in 1866-67; Comdr. There are also letters from the first Superintendent of the U. Naval Academy, Franklin Buchanan, 1845-47; and from commanders who served as commandants of midshipmen (cadets) at the Academy. From 1805 to 1841, there are letters from captains commanding at sea, at navy yards, and at naval stations. There are name and subject indexes in the individual volumes. Directives, 1798-1913 The application of the term "directives" to general orders and circulars issued by the Navy Department is of recent origin. If there is more than one volume, usually the muster rolls and payrolls are bound in separate volumes. In addition to the officers and crews assigned to the yard or station, other naval personnel who were temporarily there or who were unassigned were sometimes carried on the rolls. Payrolls of persons employed by the Bureau of Steam Engineering on Jeanette, 1879. Payrolls of mechanics and laborers, 1869-70 and n.d. There are indexes to names of vessels in most of the volumes.
Letters dated from March 1798 to September 1868 are bound in volumes entitled "Letters to Officers, Ships of War." Letters dated 1798-1800 are addressed to all categories of U. For the period 1861-68, letters sent to officers commanding squadrons or flotillas are not included, if they relate to squadron operations. Each index is arranged in alphabetical sections for the most part by position of addressee, but there are also entries for subjects of letters, including persons. There are indexes in each volume arranged by position (President and Cabinet Secretaries, Commissioners), most of which give a brief description of the content of each letter. Most of the entries are duplicates of those in entry 32, but are in a briefer format. Entries are for letters referred to Navy Department bureaus, the Marine Corps, the Secretary of War, the Treasury Department, and the Pension Office. Entries give the date and an abstract of the content of each letter. Members of Congress transmitted inquiries from constituents and sent letters of introduction or recommendation on their behalf. They prescribed policy in such matters as uniform dress, pay, other financial matters, and recruitment and discharge; gave instructions concerning the performance of duties; announced deaths of and tributes to high-ranking naval officers and other prominent persons, convening and proceedings of courts-martial, examinations for promotions, appointments, meetings and findings of boards; and transmitted honors and awards, commissions, acts of Congress, and Presidential messages. The first volume covers the period May 1845-July 1851; and the second volume, January 1849-December 1856. In the third volume, there are separate sections for letters from each official.