Слике страница
PDF
ePub

sergeants, ten corporals, two musicians, two cooks, thirty-eight firstclass and thirty-eight second-class privates: Provided, That the President may, in his discretion, increase the number of sergeants in any company of engineers to twelve, the number of corporals to eighteen, the number of first-class privates to sixty-four, and the number of second-class privates to sixty-four, but the total number of enlisted men authorized for the whole Army shall not, at any time, be exceeded: And provided, That officers detailed from the Corps of Engineers to · serve as battalion adjutants and battalion quartermasters and commissaries shall, while so serving, receive the pay and allowances herein authorized for battalion staff officers of infantry regiments.

[merged small][ocr errors]

SEC. 22. That the Corps of Engineers shall consist of one Chief of Engineers with the rank of brigadier-general, seven colonels, fourteen lieutenant-colonels, twenty-eight majors, forty captains, forty first lieutenants, and thirty second lieutenants. The enlisted force provided in section eleven of this act and the officers serving therewith shall constitute a part of the line of the Army: Provided, That the Chief of Engineers shall be selected as now provided by law, and hereafter vacancies in the Corps of Engineers in all other grades above that of second lieutenant shall be filled, as far as possible, by promotion according to seniority from the Corps of Engineers: And provided also, That vacancies remaining in the grades of first and second lieutenant may be filled by transfer of officers of the Regular Army, subject to such professional examination as may be approved by the Secretary of War. Vacancies in the grade of second lieutenant not filled by transfer shall be left for future promotions from the Corps of Cadets at the United States Military Academy.

[blocks in formation]

Sec. 27. That each position vacated by officers of the line, transferred to any department of the staff for tours of service under this act, shall be filled by promotion in the line until the total number detailed equals the number authorized for duty in each staff department. Thereafter vacancies caused by details from the line to the staff shall be filled by officers returning from tours of staff duty. If under the operation of this act the number of officers returned to any particular arm of the service at any time exceeds the number authorized by law in any grade, promotions to that grade shall cease until the number has been reduced to that authorized.

S. Doc. 229 -34

X.—THE ORDNANCE DEPARTMENT.

THE ORDNANCE DEPARTMENT.

May 27, 1775, Congress appointed a committee to consider ways and means to supply the colonies with ammunition and military stores, and the British Government having prohibited the exportation of arms and ammunition to any of the plantations the Congress authorized the exportation of produce in all vessels importing munitions of war.

While, July 16, 1776, a Commissioner of Artillery Stores was appointed (April 11, 1777, styled Commissioner-General of Military Stores) the business of procuring arms and ammunition was conducted by a secret committee and the Board of War.

The act of April 2, 1794, authorized the President to appoint an officer whose duty, under the Department of War, was to superintend the receiving, safe-keeping, and distribution of military stores.

The Ordnance Department was first established under the act of May 14, 1812. It was not provided for in the reduction of the Army March 3, 1815; but the act of April 24, 1816, provided that it be continued as organized under the act of February 8, 1815.

By the act of March 2, 1821, the Ordnance Department, as an independent bureau, was abolished and merged in the artillery. The President was authorized to select such artillery officers as might be necessary to perform ordnance duties, and to each regiment of that arm one super numerary captain was attached for ordnance duty. The provision of that law making the artillery officers subject only to the orders of the War Department while on ordnance duty was almost tantamount to preserving the independence of the bureau, and must be regarded as a manifestation by Congress of a want of contidence in the success of the scheme. The law was passed in the interests of economy, simplicity of organization, and thoroughness of instruction. Mr. Secretary Calhoun, who strongly advocated the measure, said:

By uniting the three corps of the ordnance, light artillery, and artillery in one, appointing one general staff at the head of it, and making its officers pass in rotation through the three services, the organization of the Army will be rendered more simple and the instruction of the officers much more complete.

Experience, however, proved that neither interest was at all subserved. After eleven years' trial the experiment proved a failure, and was so acknowledged by the ablest generals of the Army and the most distinguished public men of the country, including Mr. Calhoun himself. Accordingly the Department was reorganized on an independent footing by the act of April 5, 1832.

Commissary of Artillery Stores.
Aug. 17, 1775.--Mr. Ezekiel Cheever.
July 16, 1776.- Benjamin Flower, esq. (Pennsylvania), for the flying camp.
Jan. 18, 1777.- Maj. Samuel French.

« ПретходнаНастави »