NA, ENG 1/16/1863

Engineer Bureau
Richmond Jany 16th 1863
Hon. Jas. A. Seddon
Secy of War
   Authority has recently been granted Capt. E. T. D. Myers, Engr Corps, P. A. C. S. Chief Eng of the Piedmont RR Co to take possession of 50 pr cent of the unlaid iron belonging to the Western N. C. R. R. {52 lb T-rail}, the Raleigh & Gaston R. R. {T-rail of unknown weight}, the Atlantic & N. C. R. R. {60 lb T-rail}, and the Va. Central R. R. {various sizes and types of rail} -- also authority to take possession of all the iron of the Clarkesville & Keysville Road {Roanoke Valley RR; 50 lb T-rail}, the Port Walthall R. R. {a branch of the Richmond & Petersburg RR; T and U rail of 51 to 60 lbs}, and the {Richmond &} York River Road {52 lb T-rail} beyond the Paminkey. 
   The govt difficulty in possessing suitable agents for the collection of the iron at the present time, and even if the the services were secured, the obstacles that will naturally be thrown in their way, in the performance of their duty, suggests that, the aid of the Government should be extended to the Piedmont RR Company & its Chief Engineer. This road is being built to augment the transportation facilities of the Confederacy, a question of vital importance, appertaining naturally to the Quartermaster Dept., and I therefore respectfully recommend that the Quartermaster Genl. be requested to direct such affairs of his Department as may be most conveniently located for each of the above impressments of iron, to undertake without delay its collection and provide promptly all necessary transportation.  
Very Respy &c
J. F. Gilmer
Col. & Chf Engr Bu
Capt. E. T. D. Myers, when addressed in Danville, Va., on being communicated with, will designate by return mail, the point of delivery preferred in each case, whether Danville, Va. or Greensboro, N. C.
J. F. G.