Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Stealing the Public Money

courtesy ohiohistoryteachers.org
 The Covington Journal  of December 21, 1861 reports the following information.

The world has never witnessed such a plundering of public money as has been going on in the United States since the commencement of the war. We believe the facts justify the assertion that at least twenty-five percent of the money contributed by people has been stolen. All branches of the service are reeking with corruption.


IN CHARTERING VESSELS
A man named Morgan, a brother-in-law of the Secretary of the Navy, made $85,000 in two or three months time in chartering vessels for the government.


IN PURCHASING ARMS
"The government (we quote from a report to Congress, as furnished by telegraph) has been the victim or more than one conspiracy, and remarkable combinations have been formed to rob the Treasury. The profits from the sale of arms to the government have been enormous."


IN ARMY SUPPLIES
"The committee examined into army supplies and say, in the Western department especially, requisitions have supplied the place of contracts. The committee say, in the purchase of cattle there have been gross mismanagements, and in the purchase of horses and wagons in New York, they find great irregularities."


COMMISSIONER OF PUBLIC BUILDINGS
The committee also say a man by the name of Wood, enjoying the confidence of the President, was appointed Commissioner of Public Buildings, a place requiring not only great business capacity, but unflinching integrity; and that Wood, from his own declarations, made himself an instrument for plundering the Government.


FORTIFICATIONS
The committee next approached the subject of fortifications at St. Louis, the circumstances surrounding this work being of the most extraordinary character, and marked by extravagance, recklessness, insubordination and fraud. 


HORSE AND MULE CONTRACTS
The committee found that the most astounding and unblushing frauds had been perpetrated in the purchase of horses and mules.


The committee informs the public that this is only the beginning of the developments!



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