NA, A&F 9/2/1862

Marion ???? Sept 2 1862
O M Avery Prest
Alaba & Florida RR of Florida
Pollard Alaba
D Sir
   The copy of your letter to the Hon G W Randolph Secy of War of the 7th of August has this day reached me owing to my absence. In that portion of your letter, in which you say "While influences caused ??? Road ??? the R?? ??? and Mr. Tate is (unwittingly of course) allowing himself to be used as an instrument to complete, am distrusting, you do me great injustice and your statement as said is I am concerned in without the slightest foundation in truth. I told you in our interview at the time of the seizure, I had never been in Mobile in my life, had not a cent of interest there had never spoken to a citizen of Mobile on the subject in my life. Under these circumstance I cannot see why you insist in this way & saying I have been acting under Mobiles influence. I have acted from what I believed to be my duty to my country without being influenced by any one. I relaid 38 miles of Iron instead of 28 as you state, only 14 miles of the Cahaba Road {Cahaba, Marion & Greensboro RR} could be obtained under any circumstances. The Iron at Atlanta belonged to the State of Geo. and could not be taken. The Iron near Granada had been laid down in side & other tracks before I could get them. ??? the only Iron obtainable was yours, & 14 miles of the Cahaba Road & 6 miles, or less of Eufaula Iron {Montgomery & Eufaula RR}. The Cahaba Iron was too light as I was satisfied by the trial of 4 miles of it & was ??? fed as is proved by the Supt report in which he says it can handle the straightlaid by the ??? ??? in ??ging. I have had a conversation with Genl Bragg within the last week upon the subject of your compensation. He instructs me to say to you he has referred the whole matter to the War department.
Very Respy
Sam Tate
Milt Supt M&S Rd