Robert E. Lee

Joseph G. Totten

U.S. Mil. Academy West Point

Feby 14, 1854


I have the honour to acknowledge receipt of the letter of the Dept. of the 14th Inst.
Requesting me to deposit the sum of $34.12 with the Asst. Treas. New York to meet that amount
overdrawn on account of Forage of Artillery & Cavalry Horses.

Before doing so I think it proper to make the following Extracts from a letter of Lieut. R. S. Smith, 4th Arty. A.A. Grm. To the 3rd Auditor, under date of December 15, 1853 on that subject in reply to suspension of vouchers for 3rd Quarter 1852, viz:

“3rd Quarter 1852 $2034.12.” Forage issued in that quarter to [“]67 Artillery & Cavalry Horses, referred to Engineer Branch” x x “I cannot however understand how the sum of $2034.12 is arrived at, as a calculation based on my vouchers for the purchase & issue of the forage of 67 horses in that quarter, shows the money value to be $1448.54. Hay then cost 55 cts & oats $1.50 for 100 lbs.”

The calculation has again been made as follows.

67 horse for 92 days—10 lbs hay each per day = 61.640 lbs @ 55 per 100 lbs$339.02
67    ”       ”  92    ”       12 lbs Oats  ”     ”    ”    = 73.968 lbs @ 1.50       “1109.52

Difference between amount actually expended & amount charged $585.58—Copies of the
above mentioned vouchers showing the price of Forage in that Quarter, are herewith transmittedthe
originals or in the 3rd Auditor’s Office.

The charge made against “Engineer Branch” is at the rate of $10.12 for Horse for Month whereas from the vouchers it appears it should be about $7.21 per Horse per Month. Waiting your further instructions

I remain Very resply. Yr. obt Srvt.Signed/ R. E. Lee Br. Col:
Supt: Mil: Acady

Superintendent’s Daily Correspondence
United States Military Academy

Superintendent’s Letter Book No. 3, p. 91. Addressed “Genl. J. G. Totten Chief Engineer Washington City D.C.”