THE NATIONAL TRIBUNE.
fj)lit atimjai nhnnt.
GEORGE E. LEMON & CO.,
Editors and Proprietors.
- "Washington, D. 0., October, 1877.
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jfBr Communications, subscriptions, and letters upon all
business matters relating to tfie Natioiial Tribune should
GEORGE E. LEMON & CO.,
Editors and Proprietors,
P. O. Drawer 325. 916 F St., Washington, D. C.
Unheralded, without previous announcement
of any sort, a new candidate for public favor in
troduces itself into the journalistic world. There
is a necessity for its existence. It is intended to
.fill a vacancy in journalism that should not have
been left unfilled so long. Its life will depend
upon it3 sustenance. "When the motives which
impel its publication no longer exist, and the
objects toward which its devotion is to be di
rected are accomplished, it will remain then to
be seen whether there is need for it longer.
Seldom is a periodical established with a well
defined object; with an actual, expressed motive.
The purposes of newspapers are often intention
ally concealed; and a pretense may often cover
a variety of objects far from the one expressed.
But, in the publication of this paper, the inten
tion is, to advocate, particularly, five great
I. -The passage of a law by Congress equaliz
ing the bounties paid to soldiers of the late war.
H. The passage of an act by Congress, 'under
which the pension of a wounded, injured, dis
eased soldier, or the family of a dead soldier,
may begin from the time of death, or the date
of discharge on account of disability.
HC. The extension of the pension laws, so as
to include soldiers of the Mexican war.
IV. Putting on pension-rolls ail survivqrs . of
the war of 1812, and all vidows of such, married
prior to 1850, regardless of the period of service
of the soldier.
Y. Action by Congress to remedy innumer
able defects (in die pension laws, wjiich will be
pointed out from time to time, particularly the
repeal of section 4717 p.f the Revised Statutes.
These objects' are of direct and personal in
terest, not only tq is, but to Qyery pensioner in
the United Stakes;. to every soldier who fought
under the Union flag; to every widow and every
child of a soldier ; and generally, to every soldier's
friend. The amount of influence to be exerted
by these pages will depend entirely upon the cir
culation this paper receives. The subscription
price has been placed low, so that it is within the
reach of all. Let those who receive this copy
circulate it among their friends, particularly
among the soldiers of their locality. Our in
terests and the interests of soldiors are mutual.
By helping us, you help yourselves. Do not
allow yourselves to be drawn into the support of
irresponsible advertising sheets, but concentrate
your energies here, where they will be directly
applied to the purpose' you and we wish to ac
compiish. A strong effort will be made during the ap
proaching session of Congress to bring about
such legislation as we ask above. In order to
aid tliis effort, it was thought best, among some
of the friends of the soldiers in Washington, to
issue monthly such a paper as this, that in its
columns might be recorded what is necessary to
be done, the progress that is made, and the rea
sons why its accomplishment is wise and just.
Let every comrade lend us a hand. The near
approach of Congress makes it essential that,
whatever is to be done, be done immediately.
Let us hear from you quickly.
THE PENSION OFFICE.
Under the management of Commissioner Beni
ley, the Pension OffieeSasreached a degree of
efficiency unknown to the administration of any
previous Commissioner. His ripe judgment, ster
ling integrity, and excellent abilities, combined
with a faculty of dispatching business with method
and rapidity, give him eminent fitness for the
position he holds, and it is for the interest of the
pensioners, as well as for the interest of the Gov
ernment, that he be retained in office. We take
pleasure in saying that Commissioner Bentley
enjoys the warmest confidence and regard of both
the President and the Secretary of the Interior.
Congress should, however, make provision for
the increase of his salary, which is, proportion
ately, very much smaller than that of any other
officer of the Government of his official rank and
responsibilities. The Auditors of the Treasury
receive four thousand dollars per annum. The
Commissioner of Customs receives forty-five hun
dred. The Commissioner of Internal Revenue
receives six thousand. The Comptrollers of the
Treasury receive five thousand. The Comptroller
of the Currency receives the" same amount, while
the Commissioner of Pensions, whose office de
mands abilities and responsibility equal to all of
the above, and greater than most of them, only
receives thirty-five hundred dollars. Commis
sioner Bentley disburses thirty million dollars a
year more than any other single bureau officer
under the Government. He, has agents under him
who receive, three and, in some instances, four
times as much salaryTiHie receives ; and yet he
is responsible for their' good conduct and official
.efficiency. . ,, .
T7 -T : '
Soldiers, don't subscribe to any fund, or pay
t money to any person under the pretense of aid
ing in the passage of the Tjourity bill, Nomoney
tis needed, and those who'iask for it are swindlers.
Subscribe for The National Tribune, dhd.ch'cii
late it among those who jhave influence. ,T
WHAT EQUALIZATION WILL COST.
1 The only argument that is brought against the
passage of the bill to equalize the bounties of the
soldiers of the late war is, that it will take more
money 'from the Treasury than the Government
can spare. But this argument has been met
again and again by the testimony of men who
know, and by statistics from the official records
of the War Department! Some of the enemies
of the measure have asserted that three or four
hundred million dollars would be needed to ad
just the bounties of soldiers with the fairness that
should be given to all, but this is absurd.
Adjutant General Townscnd, who is more
competent to give an opinion on this subject
than any other man, because he was in charge
of the Adjutant General's Office in Washington
throughout the war, and superintended the rec
ords of enlistments, gave as his testimony before
the Committee on Military Affairs of the House
of Representatives, in 1874, that, as nearly as he
could calculate, from the records of the depart
ment, the aggregate amount of money necessary
in order to equalize bounties under the bill pro
posed, would not be much more than twenty
At the beginning of the late war, the accounts
of the army, and the payments made of bounty
and pay to soldiers, were kept as if the war were
to last only sixty days or so, at which time it was
supposed the accounts could be easily examined
and adjusted. A defective system, once started,
was hard to change, so that the war was closed
before the book-keeping of the department be
came anywhere near as accurate and methodical
as it should have been at its commencement.
Then the work of classification became one of
enormous proportions, and even now cannot bo
accomplishedat all satisfactorily. Had'thfcsysenr
of records been more perfect, we could have told
exactly how much this equalization measure
would cost, but in the confusion, it can only bo
approximated, using the best data that can be
obtained, as General Townsend has doue. "
The following table will show the number of
troops called for, and the number actually ob
tained at each of the calls during the war:
Date of call. l! Period of service. BSSSS.
April 15, 1861..-. -75,000 3 months. ' 93,320
May 3, 1861 , 42,034
May 3, 1861, regulars.!. '22,714 . -vearq 714.231
May 3, 1861, seamen. 18,000 3 j ears. "Vi
July 22. 25, 1861.. 500,000 J
May and June, 1862 .v. .' 3 months. 15,007
July 2, 1862 300,000 3 years. 431,958
August 4, 1802 300,000 9 months. 87,fS3
Juno 15, 1863. 100,000 6 months. 16,361
October 17, 1863 300,000 3 years.) 374907
February 1, 1864 200,000 3 years.
March 14, 1864 200.000 3 years. 2S4.021
April 231861 .V.... u l 85,000 ' 100 days. 83,f52
July 18, 1864 .'.... . 509,000 1, 2, and 3 years. 334,-S32
December 19, 1804 ,"... , 300,000 1, 2, and 3 years. 204,r3
Totals 2,942,748 2,6401
Aggrogato number obtained, reduced to throe years' standard,
Prom this J table, it will seen, that the total
number o troops serving at different times in the
Union army during the late war was two million
six hundred and ninety thousand four hundred
and one. This includes those men who served
for three, six, and nine months, and those who
enlisted for two or three years,- or the war.
Thus, for the purpose of calculation, it is esti
mated, that from April, 1861, to April, 1865, a
period pf iour years, tEP million forty-two thou
sand one hundreds andf fifty men were called to
serve three years. s As some enlisted early and
, others towards the close of the war, the question
arises : How many enlisted men actually served
three, years? Xtis.the opinion of prominent
army officers, that not less than one half of the
entire army served for this length of time, and
they 'give, as the average forco of the army, from
J, the beginning to the end.of the war, one million
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