|Proceedings of A Conference with Virginia Railroad
Companies held at Richmond, Virginia, September 29, 1864
| At a Conference held on the 29th of
September, 1864, at the Office of the Board of Public Works of Virginia,
in the Capitol at Richmond, between the Representatives of Virginia
Railroad Companies and Lieutenant Colonel F. W. Sims, Chief of the
Railroad Bureau of the Quartermaster's Department of the Confederate
States, for the purpose of considering the propriety of increasing the
rates of compensation aid for Government transportation on Virginia
Present: Lieutenant Colonel F. W. Sims, Assistant Quartermaster,
representing the Government and the following Railroad Companies:
| Richmond & Danville Railroad Company -- By
C. G. Talcott, General Superintendent
| Virginia Central Railroad Company -- By H.
D. Whitcomb, General Superintendent
| Petersburg Railroad Company -- By C. O.
Sanford, Esq., President
| South-Side Railroad Company -- By H. D.
Bird, Esq., General Superintendent
| Richmond & Petersburg Railroad Company --
By Charles Ellis, Esq. President
| Richmond, Fredericksburg & Potomac
Railroad Company -- By P. V. Daniel, Jr., President
| On motion,
| C. O. Sanford, Esq., was appointed
Chairman, and H. D. Whitcomb, Esq., Secretary.
| The object of the meeting having been
fully discussed by Colonel Sims and the Representatives of the different
Companies, and tabular statistics having been presented by each Company,
exhibiting among other things its gross receipts and current expenses,
its receipts from the transportation of troops and Government freight
separately stated, and the estimated depreciation of its roadway and
equipments; after consideration, it was
| Resolved, That a committee,
consisting of Lieutenant Colonel Sims and Messrs. P. V. Daniel, jr., C.
G. Talcott, and H. D. Bird, be appointed, to whom shall be referred the
papers presented at this meeting, and who shall report to an adjourned
meeting, to be held at the same place on the 5th of October, such rates
of compensation for Government transportation, and such regulations
concerning the performance of such transportation as they may deem just
| On Wednesday, the 5th of October, the
conference having reassembled according to adjournment, the Committee
appointed at the former meeting, made the following report:
| The Committee, to whom was referred the
subject of increased rates of fare and tolls on Government
transportation, and the statistical statements furnished by the several
Railroad Companies here represented, having carefully considered the
same, respectfully report and recommend the following rates:
| All vouchers given for transportation of
men shall be charged for at the rate of ten cents per mile per man,
except for men carried over the Richmond & Petersburg Railroad, on which
two dollars per man shall, for special reasons, be paid for all
| 1st Class -- powder and fixed ammunition
-- $2.62 1/2 per 100 lbs per 100 miles.
| 2d Class -- all articles not enumerated in
any other class -- $1.75 per 100 lbs per 100 miles.
| 3d Class -- live stock -- $210 per car
load per 100 miles.
| +++ Six head or less of horses, mules, or
cattle, shall constitute a half car load, and be charged as such.
| 4th Class -- hay, fodder, shucks and
straw, (compressed in bales,) bran and mill offal, and coal -- $175 per
car load per 100 miles.
| +++ Quartermasters shall express on their
vouchers the number of bales transported, and each bale shall be
estimated to weigh 600 lbs.
| 5th Class -- camp and garrison equipage of
troops in motion, mounted guns, caissons, forges, battery wagons,
ambulances, and other government vehicles -- $135 per car load per 100
| +++ Any single vehicle (except a
four-horse wagon) will be charged as half a car load.
| 6th Class -- wood, lumber, stone and
bricks, (to be loaded and unloaded by Government,) t be $115 per car
load per 100 miles.
| +++ No train specially ordered for
transportation of above articles, shall consist of less than twelve
cars; and, when it is detained by the Government in such service over
ten hours, the usual rates of detention shall be charged.
| Rule 1st -- For all articles carried less
than fifty miles, the rates shall be to-thirds that for 100 miles; 50
miles and less than 100 miles, the charge shall be for 100 miles; over
100 miles, the rates shall be pro rata per mile by 100 rates'
| Rule 2d -- Extra or special trains,
ordered by proper military authority, to be paid for at the rate of
$5.25 per mile for the locomotive and one car; and for every additional
car seventy cents per mile for freight cars, and $1.05 for passenger
cars -- to be charged one way.
| Rule 3d -- When a military officer, having
proper authority, orders a train to be held in readiness for the
transportation of troops or things, the proper charge shall be for the
locomotive $100 per day, and $8 per day for each car, including the
services of conductor, engineer, firemen, and train hands, while so
held, and no charge to be less than for one day.
| Rule 4th -- When trains of one road pass
over another, carrying troops or things for Government, the road owning
the train shall receive as compensation one-half of its earnings, to be
paid by the Government, and the Company owning the track the other half.
When cars alone are furnished, the Company owning the cars shall receive
as compensation one-fourth of the earnings of said cars, or, if the
engine alone is furnished, the Company owning the engine shall receive
one-fourth of said earnings.
| Rule 5th -- The Government should in all
cases state by what train -- passenger of freight -- the transportation
is to be performed; and, when it is by passenger trains, fifty per
centum additional to the foregoing rates shall be charged.
| Rule 6th -- For the transportation of the
bodies of soldiers that are killed in battle, or die in service, each
road shall adopt its own rules and rates of charge.
| Rule 7th -- All communications and
requisitions pertaining to transportation shall be made in writing daily
by Quartermasters to the proper officers of the roads over which said
transportation is required.
| The committee submit the following, and
recommend its adoption:
| Resolved, That the rates of
transportation for troops and freights, and the rules of charge
regulating the same, as set forth in this report, be, and the same is
hereby, adopted, to take effect on the 1st of September, 1864; and that
on the 18th day of January next a similar Convention of the
representatives of the Virginia Railroad Companies be held in this city,
to confer with the Chief of the Bureau for Railroad Transportation as to
any modifications of these rates, which may at that time be deemed
necessary or proper.
| They also recommend the adoption of the
| 1. That each railroad package for
transportation shall be weighed at the time they are delivered to the
Railroad Company. Weighing to be done by the Quartermaster of the post
or his Assistant in presence of the Railroad Agent. Packages shall be in
proper shipping condition according to commercial usage.
| 2. Scales shall be tested by both officers
before the weighing commences.
| 3. Packages shall be marked or remarked
plainly with the weight, and any other marks on the box shall be marked
across the figures, but not obliterated.
| 4. The freight bills shall be made out by
the Quartermaster or his Assistant to agree with the last marks on the
| 5. When the goods have arrived at the
point of destination the post Quartermaster shall at once reweigh all
packages in presence of the Railroad Agent, and do all that was required
by the foregoing rules -- such as testing scales, &v. -- so far as may
| 6. If any packages are found to be short
in weight, the Quartermaster shall classify such as were manifestly
transported properly, but from natural wastage are short in weight. Upon
all such no deduction shall be made, nor any charge for damages, to be
paid by the Railroad Company.
| 7. On all packages, which have been broken
open and goods lost, the Quartermaster shall first make a deduction from
the gross weight of the package for what he may judge to be the natural
wastage, and then charge the Company with the weight of the goods lost.
| 8. If at the point of shipment the goods
from any cause are not weighed, the Quartermaster shall mark across the
freight bill the words "not weighed," in which case the Railroad Company
shall not be held responsible or charged damages for loss of weight,
unless the Quartermaster adduce proof that the loss occurred after the
freights were receipted for and before their arrival at their point of
| 9. Whenever freights are required by the
Government officer in charge of them to be carried in cars, which are
not owned by the Company over whose road they are carried, and are
insecure, without the consent of the Company liable for their
transportation no losses of such freights shall be charged against such
Company, unless such losses are the result of culpable neglect or
misconduct of such Company or of its officers or employees.
| 10. When Government freight is consigned
to a point on a road where there is no depot, the Agent of the road
delivering the article shall make affidavit to their safe delivery, or
otherwise as the case may be, which, in the case of his inability to
procure a receipt from the proper Government officer, will constitute a
| 11. When, by reason of a movement of the
army, a large force is congregated near a depot sufficient for ordinary
business, but not adequate to the great addition, the Government officer
to whom they are consigned must receive them promptly, a the Railroad
Company will not be responsible beyond what can be stored in their
| On motion,
| The foregoing resolutions were unanimously
| On motion,
| The secretary was instructed to have 300
copies of the foregoing proceedings printed at the expense of the
Railroad Companies represented.
| And then the meeting adjourned.
|C. O. Sanford, Chairman
|H. D. Whitcomb, Secretary