In order to increase the armies now in the field, volunteer infantry, cavalry, and artillery may be enlisted, at any time within ninety days from this date, in the respective States, under the regulations hereinafter mentioned. The volunteers so enlisted, and such of the three years' troops now in the field as may re-enlist in accordance with the provisions of this order, will constitute a force to be designated "Veteran Volunteers." The regulations for enlisting this force are as follows:
I..The period of service for the enlistments and re-enlistments above mentioned shall be for three years or during the war.
II..All able-bodied men, between the ages of eighteen and forty-five years, who have heretofore been enlisted, and have served for not less than nine months, and can pass the examination required by the mustering regulations of the United States, may be enlisted under this order as Veteran Volunteers, in accordance with the provisions hereinafter set forth.
III..Every volunteer enlisted and mustered into service as a Veteran under this order shall be enlisted to receive from the United States one month's pay in advance and a bounty and premium of four hundred and two ($402) dollars, to be paid as follow:
|1.||Upon being mustered into service, he shall be paid one month's pay in advance ...||$13 00|
|First instalment of bounty ...||25 00|
|Premium ...||2 00|
|Total payment on muster ...||40 00|
|2.||At the first regular pay day, or two months after muster-in, an additional instalment of bounty will be paid...||$50 00|
|3.||At the first regular pay day after six months' service he shall be paid an additional instalment of bounty ...||50 00|
|4.||At the first regular pay day after the end of the first year's service an additional instalment of bounty will be paid ...||50 00|
|5.||At the first regular pay day after eighteen months' service an additional instalment of bounty will be paid ...||50 00|
|6.||At the first regular pay day after two years' service an additional instalment of bounty will be paid ...||50 00|
|7.||At the first regular pay day after two and a half years' service an additional instalment of bounty will be paid ...||50 00|
|8.||At the expiration of three years' service the remainder of the bounty will be paid ..||75 00|
IV..If the government shall not require these troops for the full period of three years, and they shall be mustered honorably out of service before the expiration of their term of enlistment, they shall receive, upon being mustered out, the whole amount of bounty remaining unpaid, the same as if the full term had been served. The legal heirs of volunteers who die in service shall be entitled to receive the whole bounty remaining unpaid at the time of the soldier's death.
V..Veteran Volunteers enlisted under this order will be permitted at their option to enter old regiments now in the field; but their service will continue for the full term of their own enlistment, notwithstanding the expiration of the term for which the regiment was original enlisted. New organizations will be officered only by persons who have been in service, and have shown themselves properly qualified for command. As a badge of honorable distinction, "service chevrons" will be furnished by the War Department, to be worn by the Veteran Volunteers.
VI..Officers of regiments whose terms have expired will be authorized, on proper application, and approval of their respective Governors, to raise companies and regiments within the period of sixty days; and if the company or regiment authorized to be raised shall be filled up and mustered into service within the said period of sixty days, the offiers may be recommissioned of the date of their original commissions, and for the time engaged in recruiting they will be entitled to receive the pay belonging to their rank.
VII..Volunteers or militia now in service whose terms of service will expire within ninety days, and who shall then have been in service at least nine months, shall be entitled to the aforesaid bounty and premium of $402, provided they re-enlist before the expiration of their present term for three years or or the war; and said bounty and premiums shall be paid in the manner herein provided for other troops re-entering the service. The new term will commence from date of re-enlistment.
VIII..After the expiration of ninety days from this date, volunteers service in three years' organizations, who may re-enlist for three years or the war, shall be entitled to the aforesaid bounty and premium of $402, to be paid in the manner herein provided for other troops re-entering the service. The new term will commence from date of re-enlistment.
IX..Officers in service whose regiments or companies may re-enlist, in accordance with the provisions of this order, before the expiration of their present term, shall have their commissions continued, so as to preserve their date of rank as fixed by their original muster into United States service.
X..As soon after the expiration of their original term of enlistment as the exigencies of the service will permit, a furlough of thirty days will be granted to men who may re-enlist in accordance with the provisions of this order.
XI..Volunteers enlisted under this order will be credited as three years' men in the quotas of their respective states. Instructions for the appointment of recruiting officers and for enlisting Veteran Volunteers will be immediately issued to the Governors of States.BY ORDER OF THE SECRETARY OF WAR:
I..All able-bodied men, between the ages of eighteen and forty-five years, who have heretofore been enlisted and have served for not less than nine months, have been honorably discharged, and can pass the examination required by the Mustering Regulations of the United States, may be enlisted in any Regiment they choose, new or old; and, when mustered into the United States service, will be entitled to all the benefits provided by General Orders No. 191, for Recruiting "Veteran Volunteers."
A Regiment, Battalion, or Company shall bear the title of "Veteran" only in case at least one-half its numbers, at the time of muster into United States service, are "Veteran Volunteers."
II..The benefits provided by General Orders 191, for Veteran Volunteers, will be extended to men who re-enlisted prior to the promulgation of that order, provided they have fulfilled the conditions therein set forth.
I..To carry out the provisions of paragraphs 8 and 9, General Orders No. 191, current series, from this office, in reference to volunteers who may come within the limit for re-enlistment as Veteran Volunteers, as fixed by General Orders No. 365, current series, the following regulations are established:
1. The [m]uster-out or discharge of all men who may re-enlist, and their re-enlistments and consequent re-musters, will be under the immediate supervision and direction of the Commissaries and Assistant Commissaries of Musters for the respective Armies and Departments. The said officers will make all musters out of and re-musters into the service.
2. All men who desire to take advantage of the benefits of the Veteran Volunteer order, by re-enlistment under it, will be regularly mustered out of service on the prescribed muster-out rolls. The discharges prescribed by paragraph 79, Mustering Regulations, will be furnished in all cases. A remark will be made on the muster-out rolls, over the signature of the Commissary or Assistant Commissary of Musters, as follows: "Discharged by virtue of re-enlistment as a Veteran Volunteer, under the provisions of General Orders No. 191, series of 1863, from the War Department."
3. Simultaneously with the muster-out and discharge, but of the date next following it, the Veteran Volunteers will be formally re-mustered into the United States service "for three years or during the war." This will be done on the prescribed muster-in rolls, (muster and descriptive roll of recruits.) These rolls will be made out from the re-enlistments and descriptive lists of the men.--(See section 4 of this paragraph.) The following remark will be made on the muster-in rolls, over the signature of the Commissary or Assistant Commissary of Musters: "Re-mustered as Veteran Volunteers, under G.O. 191, War Department, series of 1863."
4. Regimental Commanders, under the direction of Commanders of Brigades, will select and appoint a recruiting officer for their respective commands, and charge him with the re-enlistment of the Veterans thereof. The re-enlistments will be made in duplicate, and on the blank for "Volunteer Enlistment." A descriptive roll of the men will be made at the same time. The duplicate re-enlistments and descriptive roll will be forwarded, or taken, by the recruiting officer to the Commissary or Assistant Commissary of Muster who may be in charge of the musters for the organization to which the men belong. The mustering officer will countersign the re-enlistment papers, and file the descriptive roll with the records of his office. One copy of the re-enlistment will be delivered by the mustering officer to the Paymaster, to assist him in the examination and verification of the account; this copy will be forwarded, with the said accounts, to the proper accounting officer of the Treasury. The second copy of the re-enlistment will be returned by the mustering officer to the Regimental Commander, and by him forwarded to the Adjutant General of the Army, with the Monthly Recruiting Return required by par. 919 Army Regulations, from Superintendents of Regimental Recruiting Service.
5. The Pay Department of the Army is hereby charged with all payments (final dues under original enlistments, advance pay, bounties and premiums) of the volunteers discharged and re-mustered as directed in this order. The final payments under the original enlistments will be made on the muster-out roll.
The amount of the "total payment on Muster," (re-muster,) par. II, G.O. 324, A.G.O., current series, will be made under the rules set forth in General Orders No. 163. The consolidated receipt rolls,. referred to in the said order, will be certified to by the Commissary or Assistant Commissary of Musters charged with the re-muster of the Veteran Volunteers into service. The payments on discharge, and those due on re-muster, will be made at the same time, and in full, immediately after the men are re-mustered into the service.
II..Commanders of Armies and Departments are hereby charged with the faithful execution of this order, and will issue such instructions under it as in their opinion will best secure the object in view. Troops to be discharged and re-mustered as Veterans will be reported by the proper commanders, through Army or Department Headquarters, to the Paymaster General. The reports will be made at a date such as will avoid delay in the payments being made.
I..It is hereby ordered that volunteers now in service, re-enlisting as veteran volungeers under General Orders 191 from this office, shall have a furlough of at least thirty days previous to the expiration of their original enlistment. This privilege will be secured to the volunteers either by ordering all so re-enlisted, with their officers, to report in their respective States, through the governors, to the superintendent of the recruiting service, for furlough and reorganization, or by granting furloughs to the men individually.
II..Mustering officers shall make the following stipulation on the muster-in rolls of veteran volunteers now in service re-enlisting as above:
"To have a furlough of at least thirty days in their States before expiration of original term."
III..Commanding Generals of Departments and Armies are hereby authorized to grant the aforesaid furloughs, within the limit of time fixed in compliance with this order, as the demands of the service will best permit, reporting their action to the Adjutant General of the Army
IV..In going to and from their respective States and homes the veteran volunteers furloughed, as herein provided, will be furnished with transportation by the Quartermaster's department.
V..When the three-fourths of a regiment or company re-enlist, the volunteers so enlisted may be furloughed in a body, for at least thirty days as aforesaid, to go home with their officers to their respective States and districts to reorganize and recruit, and the individuals of the companies or regiments who do not re-enlist shall be assigned to duty in other companies and regiments until the expiration of their term of service.
The commanding general directs that you send to these headquarters, in the course of to-morrow, if possible, a statement showing the number of men that will re-enlist in your command, under the provisions of General Orders, Nos. 191, 305, and 376, of the present year, from the War Department, upon the condition that the men so re-enlisting are at once allowed the furlough of at least thirty days provided for in the last-mentioned order. The statement will be arranged by regiments and show the number of men that will re-enlist in each regiment, as well as the number that will not re-enlist or do not come within the provisions of the orders applicable to the subject.
No man can re-enlist at this time who has more than a year to serve.
By command of Major-General Meade:S. WILLIAMS, Assistant Adjutant-General.
SIR: I have the honor herewith to transmit a copy of an order issued by me, designed to carry out, in this army, the orders and instructions of the War Department relative to the re-enlistment of veteran volunteers.
It is not in my power, at the present moment, to say what number of men have re-enlisted or agreed to re-enlist prior to this date, but I place the number, approximately, at 10,000 infantry and 2,500 cavalry.
I do not consider that a greater number of men can be spared at present, although it is hoped that a considerable number will yet re-enlist; and, if so, they can be furloughed when the men about to leave return to duty.
Under the discretion left to me in General Orders, No. 376, of the 21st ultimo, from the War Department, I have directed that individual furloughs be given, believing that this would be more acceptable to the men generally than an order to report to the superintendents of the recruiting service, in their respective States, for furloughs and reorganization. When, however, three-fourths of a regiment or company re-enlist, the men will be allowed to go home in a body with their officers, and to take their arms with them.
The period of the furlough has been fixed at thirty-five days, so as to allow the men, as far as practicable, thirty days within the limits of their States.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
GEO. G. MEADE,
SPECIAL ORDERS, No. 329.
HDQRS. ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, December 21, 1863.
1. With the exception hereinafter indicated, corps and other independent commanders are now authorized to grant individual furloughs for thirty-five days, which must cover the entire period of the soldier's absence from his company and regiment, to such men of their respective commands as may have, up to this date, re-enlisted, or having, since the issue of the circular from these headquarters dated December 17, 1863, signified their intention to do so, shall at once re-enlist as veteran volunteers, under the provisions of General Orders, Nos. 191, 305, and 376, from the War Department.
2. When three-fourths of the men of a regiment or company re-enlist, such portion of the regiment or company will be allowed [page 574] to go home in a body, and take with it its arms and equipments. In all other cases, the arms and equipments of the men granted furloughs will be turned in, before leaving camp, to the division ordnance officer, by whom they will be transferred to the officer in charge of the ordnance depot, to be held subject to his call on the return of the men to duty. Three-fourths of a veteran regiment will be understood to mean three-fourths of the men belonging to it who are within the limits of this army, and not to include those absent as prisoners of war, in general hospitals, &c. When there are men in a veteran organization who do not come within the limits for re-enlistment, all men who have joined the army since July 1, 1863, excepted, and are yet willing to re-enlist, they will be permitted to go on furlough with the regiment, in case it goes in a body, and those only will be left behind who are within the limits and yet refuse to re-enlist, and the aforesaid men who have recently joined. The men willing to re-enlist will, of course, not be discharged and remustered till they come within the limits; that is, have less that one year to serve, but they will be required to affirm, in writing, their intention to re-enlist, and such affirmation must be witnessed by two commissioned officers, and filed with the muster-rolls of the company to which they belong.
3. Furloughs will not be granted in cases where three-fourths of a regiment or a company have agreed to re-enlist under the foregoing provisions until after corps commanders shall have sent to these headquarters, for the orders of the commanding general thereon, a statement showing the strength present with the army of such regiment or company, and the number of men who have re-enlisted or can re-enlist under the orders and instructions of the War Department.
4. When an organization may be broken up for the time being by the departure of the men going on furlough, corps commanders will transfer, temporarily, the officers and men who remain to other regiments and companies from the same State, or organize them into a battalion, as may be thought best.
5. Every furlough granted under this order will have an indorsement showing that the holder, as a veteran volunteer, is entitled to transportation to and from his home, as provided for by Paragraph 4, of General Orders, No. 376, from the War Department. Corps commanders will make requisitions upon the chief quartermaster for transportation for the men of their commands who may be granted furloughs, and the chief quartermaster will make the necessary arrangements with the proper officer of his department at Washington to have all such men promptly forwarded to their homes.
6. The necessities of the service will not admit of the granting of furloughs at present to a larger number of men than are embraced in this order. But the men not herein included, who may be entitled to re-enlist as veterans, will be granted a similar furlough on the return to duty of the men now furloughed.
7. Corps and other independent commanders will report at the earliest moment practicable the number of men who have re-enlisted or may re-enlist in their respective commands, and who may receive furloughs under the provisions of this order.
By command of Major-General Meade:S. WILLIAMS