position, including the most eminent clergymen of the State, addressed them in several counties, urging them to furnish the supply wanted.
No one who witnessed can ever forget the result. Contribution was universal, and supplies of food, sufficient to meet the wants of the army at the time, were at once sent to the depots on the road, until they were packed and groaned under their weight; and I affirm that at the time of the evacuation of Richmond, the difficulty of delivering supplies sufficient for the support of the Army of Northern Virginia under General Lee was solved and surmounted for I know that abundant supplies were in reach of transportation on the Richmond and Danville railroad, being massed in Danville, Charlotte, and at other points; and from the increased motive power above referred to, they could have been delivered as fast as they were required. Moreover, sufficient means—not in Confederate currency, but in specie—just before the evacuation of Richmond, had been furnished me by Mr. Trenholm, Secretary of the Treasury, to meet the exigency and pay all pressing demands on the company. At the time of the evacuation of that city, there were ample supplies in it, as well as on the railroad west of Amelia Courthouse, to have been delivered at the latter place for the retreating army, if its numbers had been double what they were. No orders were ever given to any officers or employee of the Richmond and Danville railroad to transport any supplies to Amelia Courthouse for General Lee's army, nor did I ever hear that any such orders were sent to the Commissary Department on the occasion of the evacuation of Richmond, until after the surrender of the army. On Saturday, the day before the evacuation of the city, I was officially informed by the Quartermaster-General (Lawton), by direction of President Davis, that the Government had no purpose to evacuate the city at that time, and no reason to expect it, and that I could leave Richmond for a fortnight or more, if I desired to do so, without feeling any apprehension of its being evacuated in the meantime. This information was given me in answer to a communication that I wrote to President Davis on Friday night, asking full information of the purpose of the Government, in order that I might meet the responsibilities of my position. He not only directed the Secretary of War to give me all the information possessed by the War Department, but to procure any information that I might ask for from General Lee himself. Being assured that there was no reason to apprehend an evacuation of the city, I