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liams, and sub-assistant J. S. Ruth, and Captain Hammond, the allow. ance may take effect from January 1, 1849, when their preparations for the work were made. Very respectfully, yours,
A. D. BACHE,
Superintendent U. S. Coast Survey. Hon. W. M. MEREDITH,
Secretary of the Treasury.
Octol er 24, 1848. Sir: The United States revenue brig C. W. Lawrence, under your command, being fully equipped and ready, you will proceed to sea, and with all prudent despatch, stopping first at San Diego, on the Pacific coast, on your way to Oregon, where you will enter upon your duties as an officer of the revenue.
Your own experience, and the laws which are placed in your possession, will render any detailed explanation of those legitimate duties un. necessary.
You will, however, enter and examine all the different harbors which are now, or which may be, under the jurisdiction of the United States, and exercise the greatest vigilance in the prevention and detection of illicit trade, and in bringing offenders against the revenue service to justice.
At present you will consider the collector of the customs for the district of Oregon as the superintendent to whom your reports and accounts are to be rendered.
Should you, however, be officially notified of the extension of the rev. enue laws over California, and the appoiutment of a collector of customs for that district-that being the point where the greatest annount of commerce will most probably be directed--you will transfer your accounts to that collector, and make the point of his location your principal rendezvous for supplies.
When the funds now placed in your possession, and for which you have furnished surelies, shall have been exhausted, and when you shall have deposited with said collector or collectors your accounts in the prescribed form, accompanied by the requisite vouchers showing that said money has been faithfully disbursed, you will present all future accounts, duly authenticated, to said collectors for settlement as they become due.
You will report regularly to this department, and transmit the usual transcripts from the journals, and study the most rigid economy in your expenditures. Should vacancies occur among the officers by casualties or resignations, you will make temporary provision from the officers next in grade, reporting the same forth with to this department. Incidental to the duties before enumerated will be those of the protection of the commercial interests of the country, particularly in relieving the distresses of merchant vessels when such reliet may be necessary, and in making such exainination of the various harbors you may visit as your means will permit, and as will not interfere with your legitimate duties. All information on these points is highly important, and will be transmitted to the
superintendent of the coast survey through this department. The department has directed the commencement of the survey of the western coast by the superintendent of the coast survey, and one or more assistants of this work will speedily be despatched for this purpose. To these officers you will afford every facility in your power, by conveying them to such points as they may indicate, and by such assistance with your vessel, boats, and crew, as they may desire, and as may not seriously in. terfere with your revenue duties. They will, of course, be expected to bear, their proportion of the expenses of the mess while on board of your vessel. Should letter bags from the other departments of the government be confided to your care, you will receive and deliver them as directed. In the event of your determination to locate your family permanently on the west coast, you will at the expiration of twelve months have permission to absent yourself from the vessel, for a period not to exceed three months, to attend to their removal.
You will be permitted to employ the services of a pilot until you shall become familiar with the different harbors, at the rate of compensation prescribed by the regulations, viz : fifty dollars per month and ration per diem.
In consideration of the peculiar character of your cruising grounds, the absence of marine hospitals, and the exposure of yourself, officers, and crew to casualties, you will be permitted to employ a medical practitioner, provided his compensation shall not exceed that allowed to a pilot.
It only now remains to commit you to the care of Him who controls the elements, and to wish you a safe and prosperous voyage. I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. J. WALKER,
Secretary of the Treasury. Capt. Alex. V. FRASER,
United States Revenue Service,
Commanding U.S. Revenue Brig C. W. Lawrence.
December 28, 1848. Sir: This department deeming it expedient to send a special messenger to Oregon with official despatches relating to the revenue service, you are hereby directed to proceed without delay to the port of San Francisco, California, where you will obtain such information as may be necessary to enable you to report yourself at the earliest practicable date to Captain Fraser, of the revenue cutter Cornelius W. Lawrence.
It is important that you should immediately communicate to Captain Fraser all the information which you may be able to obtain at San Francisco in relation to the desertion of seamen, and the best means of preventing desertion; also, such information of a general nature connected with our commercial interest as you may obtain in your incidental inquiries. In view of the expected adoption by Congress, during its present session, of laws for the protection of our revenue on the coast of California, it is desirable that you should avail yourself of the opportunity which your visit to San Francisco may offer to acquire such useful knowledge on the sub. ject as will facilitate the future operations of the revenue cutter stationed
on the coast of Oregon. You will remain no longer at San Francisco, or any other point in California which it may be found necessary to touch at, ihan will be requisite for the prompt discharge of your duty; when you will proceed to Astoria, and await further orders from Captain Fraser, to whom you will report yourself.
In consideration of the probable delay and expense arising from the great number of passengers now assembled at the isthmus of Panama and pressing towards that point, and the uncertainty of obtaining any speedy conveyance on the Pacific side, you are at liberty to choose such other route as you may ascertain to be most advantageous and reliable. Your actual expenses to Oregon, not exceeding the usual cost of passage and incidental charges, will be paid, but no compensation in addition to your salary can be allowed you by this department. Respectfully,
R. J. WALKER,
Secretary of the Treasury. Lieut. JOHN Ross Brown,
United States Revenue Marine,
U. S. REVENUE BRIG LAWRENCE,
San Francisco, Nov. 1, 1849. Sir: I have barely time before the departure of the steamer to an. nounce my arrival at this port, in thirty days from the Sandwich islands, and find the presence of the vessel very necessary for the proper enforcement of the revenue laws.
All the particulars shall be communicated by the next mail from this place; and have the honor to subscribe myself, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
ALEX. V. FRASER, Captain. Hon. WM. M. MEREDITH,
Secretary of the Treasury, Washington, D. C.
UNITED STATES REVENUE BRIG LAWRENCE,
San Francisco, November 6, 1849. SIR: I had the honor on the 1st instant, per steamer of that date, to report to you merely the arrival of this vessel under my command from the Sandwich islands, where I landed the despatches for the United States commissioner. I regret to inform you that I was compelled to leave Third Lieutenant R. H. Bowlin at Honolulu, who had been suffering during a great portion of the voyage from rheumatism, contracted while serving upon our southern Atlantic coast, and which was greatly aggravated by exposure on board a small vessel during such a passage as we have ex. perienced. He was desirous of keeping the deck, notwithstanding the severity of his disease; and I judged it prudent to submit his case to Dr. Addison, of the United States ship St. Mary's, at Valparaiso, who gave, as his opinion, that the winter months in Chili or California would jeopard his recovery. Under these circumstances, and actuated by a de. sire that he should recover his health, and be ready at the earliest possible time to resume his duties, I left him, at his own solicitation, at the before.
mentioned place. His case, as with all others in the same service, is peculiarly hard and unjust. The law makes no provision for the employment of a medical officer on board of the revenue vessels, although the officers and men contribute to the hospital fund. Consuls refuse to receive them, because their perquisites are not increased by their presence; and, as in the case of three seamen left at Valparaiso, and three at the Sand. wich islands, they have been obliged to supply themselves with medical advice and maintenance from their own scanty earnings; while in the merchant service, as well as in the navy, seamen are provided for. I have directed Lieutenant Bowlin, as well as the men who were left, to present to me, on the coast, triplicate bills for their reasonable expenses, which I shall have the honor of presenting to the honorable Secretary, not doubting the liberality and justice of his decision.
Subsequent to the date of my last communication, I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the letters from the department of April 14, 1849, relative to clothing procured from the navy agent at Norfolk for the use of the crew; and of the 25th July, 1849, relative to the contract for ship chandlery for the New York station in the years 1847-'48. To the first of these communications I have only to state, that I reported the fact, with the amount, to the department prior to leaving Norfolk; and that the amount, one hundred and forty-six dollars and seventy two cents, ($146 72,) was at that time credited in my accounts, as subsequently has been that received from Mr. Parks, consul at Rio de Janeiro, and that from the navy agent at the same place.
In reply to the latter inquiry, I have to state that every communication received at the revenue bureau, from my connexion with it in April, 1843, until July 1, prior to my departure, was left upon file, bound, indexed, and registered; and that, what was not known prior to my arrival at the department, a full index and register of all papers issued and received was constructed by me, from the burning of the Treasury buildings, in 1833, until the above named period.
The inquiry appears to convey a suspicion of neglect, or of intentional error. I do recollect distinctly, that on one occasion there was but one bid received, and that through the eustom house at New York, from C. A. Secor & Co.; that it was referred to the honorable Secretary of the Treasury; and that he, at my suggestion, took the responsibility of delaying the opening of it for two days, in consequence of the uncertainty of the mails during the winter season; that none other was received ; and that this one was accepted, because, on comparison with those received from other stations, from New Orleans to Maine, the prices were found to be fair and reasonable. Lieutenant Pierce, fortunately on board of this vessel, was at the department at the time. AU bids were first received by the Secretary, endorsed and opened in the presence of the chief clerk and the officer who was my assistant. If there be any person at the department who can place his hand upon the records as I could have done, the facts of this case will require no time to develop themselves, as all cases of doubt were referred by me to the Secretary in writing. I recollect, likewise, that in numerous cases bidders had offered so low as to defy all competition.
I am likewise in receipt of the new regulations for the government of the service, the provisions of which, from my own interpretation, must go into effect at the end of the present month. On this subject, however, 1 shall confer with the new collector, who has not yet arrived, but who is expected daily.
If it is the expectation of the department to maintain a supervision over the interests of the revenue, under the restrictions thereby conveyed, it will be disappointed. It will only be necessary to state that the services of a steward are worth $150, and seaman $100 per month; and that the present pay of an officer will not furnish him with the absolute necessaries of life. No medical officer is allowed; and at this place a physician would charge from $50 to $100 for a single visit afloat. I have taken the responsibility of serving to the officers, as well as to my own mess, the proper ration, charging the same. It is the only means in our reach for support.
Congress having refused to extend the naval laws over the service, I have neither the power to arrest nor punish deserters. The officers have intimated to me their intention to resign; to which course they will be impelled by the most urgent necessity, in order to support themselves. Pork is $50, beef $30, flour $35 per barrel; sugar 25 cents, potatoes 40 cents, butter $1 50 per pound; and we are compelled to do our own washing on board.
There is no question that a great amount of illicit trade is prosecuted in this bay, and that the most vigilant measures are necessary to prevent it. I shall remain at my post until fairly starved out, trusting that the department may make some provision for our maintenance, and to secure to us, in this climate, medical treatment. At present, I rely entirely upon the kindness of Commodore Jones, who has done all in his power to assist us.
November 25.-Since writing the above, the new collector has arrived, to whom, as the proper officer, I have made known my views upon the prevention of smuggling on this coast, which will be communicated to you. In addition, I would merely state that the revenue boatmen at this port receive one hundred dollars per month, and can scarcely live.
Lieutenant Chaddock, upon whom all my reliance was placed, has been compelled, in self-defence, to resign his commission; and I am left with three officers, and not a seaman among them. Awaiting some action of the department, I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
ALEX. V. FRASER, Captain. Ho9. SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY,
UNITED STATES REVENUE BRIG LAWRENCE,
San Francisco, November 25, 1849. Sır: I have the honor to transmit a copy of the resignation of J. S. S. Chaddock, esq., first lieutenant in the United States revenue marine, the reasons for which are therein expressed. I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
ALEX. V. FRASER, Captain, Hon. WM. W. MEREDITH,
Secretary of the Treasury, Washington.