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We have prepared during the year many blue prints of the first and second day's fight for distribution.
A map and tracing showing the ground of Gen. Lew Wallace's march and the second day's fight were made, and several blue prints struck and colored.
Negotiations for the purchase of several pieces of land have been made and will be submitted for your approval. It was necessary to prepare tracings, descriptions, and abstracts for these various tracts, and this has been done.
BUILDINGS AND QUARTERS.
Nothing has been done on this score during the year, except a few necessary repairs to old houses already standing.
On the 6th day of June, 1902, the State of Ohio dedicated their 34 monuments with suitable ceremonies. They were transferred by the governor of the State to the United States and, under your instructions dated May 26, 1902, were received by me on behalf of the Government.
The expenditures since last report are as follows:
420. 28 1, 463. 17 2, 852. 85 3, 386. 07
737.67 7, 738. 14 7, 446. 43 1,860.33 10, 152. 17
521.86 1, 970.83
51, 408. 90 The balance to the credit of the commission on this date is $74,101.56.
Photographs of the mortuary and the division headquarters monuments accompany this report. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
CORNELIUS CADLE, Chairman. The SECRETARY OF WAR,
Washington, D. C.
COMMISSIONERS OF THE VICKSBURG NATIONAL
VICKSBURG, Miss., July 5, 1902. SIR: The commissioners of the Vicksburg National Military Park have the honor to submit their fourth annual report, for the year ending June 30, 1902.
One formal meeting for business and three informal conferences have been held during the year, at each of which all the commissioners were present.
Treasury checks in payment of land conveyed for the park have been received and delivered to five separate grantors, thereby completing payment for all the land in the park, the purchase of which has been authorized by the honorable Secretary of War.
The park area as outlined in the second annual report, and as later increased by the addition of the small Henry L. Mayer tract, has now been conveyed to the United States, and payment therefor made to the respective grantors, with the exception of the Sarah J. Mosby tract. The purchase of this tract is necessary for the satisfactory completion of the park area; and the topographical survey brought to light the fact that about two acres additional to the amount theretofore included in that proposed purchase are needed to include two Union battery redoubts, mounting one and two guns respectively. The positions of these two redoubts are indicated by the letters A and B in red on the print of sheet No. 6, topographical survey of the Vicksburg National Military Park, transmitted to the department with this report. It is also probable that an additional acre of land, or thereabouts, should be purchased and added to the north Federal wing at the point marked C in red on print of sheet No. 1 of said topographical survey, also transmitted with this report.
At the date of the last (third) annual report the commissioners expected that construction work on the inside park roadway (Confederate avenue) would soon be commenced. That expectation was disappointed, and the work has been much delayed. A contract has now been signed with Robert Nicholson for grading the
first section of that avenue, on the terms of his bid opened in the office of the commission May 1, 1901, and in accordance with the specifications prepared by the park engineer after the resurvey and relocation of the
By the terms of this contract Mr. Nicholson will complete the grading of that section on or before September 1, 1902.
Proposals for the completion as an earth road of the second section of Confederate avenue were opened in the office of the commission July 2, 1902. But two proposals for the work were received, and as the price named in each seemed higher than the conditions of the work warrant, the proposals were transmitted to the Department with a recommendation that both be rejected, and that proposals be invited for the completion as an earth road of sections 2 and 3 combined, being the whole of that avenue except the first section. The circular letter inviting proposals for that work can be sent from the office immediately after receiving the approval of the Department, and can be sent to over 100 contractors and contracting firms engaged in that kind of work.
A circular letter inviting proposals for the erection of three metallic viaducts on Confederate avenue were sent from the office July 3, 1902, to 33 contractors and contracting firms engaged in that kind of work.
Proposals for the restoration of the “Shirley House” were opened in the office of the commission June 21, 1902. Seven proposals for the work were received and forwarded to the Department, with the recommendation that the proposal of Mr. C. E. Nackey, being the lowest, be accepted, provided he can make an acceptable bond for the completion of the work. The recommendation was approved by the Department, and the contract with Mr. Mackey for the work will be signed and forwarded when he makes the required bond.
The topographical survey of the park, executed by Mr. E. E. Betts, park engineer, by direction of the honorable Secretary of War, was approved March 22, 1902.
During the year $3,031.38 have been expended in cutting underbrush on the park area, and 736 acres have been cleared. The allotment authorized for that work during the present fiscal year will complete the clearing of the park area, and will also permit a second cutting of undergrowth on a part of that area.
The work of locating Union avenue will soon be commenced by the park engineer, and the alignment and profile of that avenue will be forwarded to the Department as soon as possible. The commissioners earnestly desire and expect that the work of road construction will go forward rapidly during the present fiscal year.
The governor of Mississippi, by proclamation dated January 25, 1902, ceded jurisdiction to the United States over four tracts of land (aggregating 9.62 acres), thereby completing the jurisdiction of the United States over all the land purchased and conveyed for the park.
Since the date of the last annual report State commissions from Missouri, Ohio, Wisconsin, Texas, and Illinois have visited the park to cooperate with the commissioners in locating the positions of their respective regiments and batteries on the lines of investment and defense. Liberal appropriations for State monuments on the park have been made by the legislatures of New York, Ohio, and lowa.
The commissioners respectfully submit the following estimate for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1904: For continuing the work of establishing the Vicksburg National Military Park; for the compensation of three civilian commissioners and the secretary and historian; for clerical and other services, labor, iron gun carriages, the mounting of siege guns, monuments and historical tablets, maps, surveys, roads, bridges, restoration of earthworks, purchase and transportation of supplies and material—these and other necessary expenses, $50,000.