NA, ENG 11/21/1863

Engineer Bureau
November 21st 1863
Col. C. F. M. Garnett, Com &C
   Your letters of the 16th & 19th insts relating, the 1st to the Florida & Georgia connection, and the 2d to the removal of iron from the Alabama & Florida RR Co {of Florida} have been received and laid before the Hon Secretary of War.
   Mr. Seddon desires you to write to Maj. John Screven, Prest of the Savannah, Albany & Gulf RR, impressing upon him that the Govt relied upon {him?} to construct the connection between Lawton and Live Oak and was under the impression that he had given assurances of his willingness to enter upon the undertaking. Mr. Seddon desires further that you should make the following offer to Major Screven which may prove acceptable. The Government to furnish the iron and Major S's Company to lay the track and run the road upon the following conditions viz: that it (the Company) will devote fifty (50) per cent yearly of its gross earnings on the connection, so long as the war may last, to purchasing the iron furnished by the Govt and at the rates paid for it by the Govt. At the termination of the War all the iron thus paid for by the Company will of course belong to it, but the remainder will belong to the Government and may be removed unless the Company desires then to purchase it from the Govt.
   If the foregoing proposition is not accepted by Major Screven, please write him to make to you a clear statement of the terms which would prove acceptable.
   Your recommendations contained in letter of 19th inst. that 5 miles of the Ala & Fla RR be allowed to remain in place is approved by the Hon Secretary of War.
Very Respy Your Obt Servt
A. L. Rives
Lt Col & Actg Chf of Bureau