General John B. Hood's General Field Order No. 14
- August 12, 1864
In the Field, August 12, 1864
I. The lawless seizure and destruction of private property by
straggling soldiers in the rear and on the flanks of this army has
become intolerable. It must come to an end. It is believed to be
chargeable to worthless men, especially from mounted commands, who
are odious alike to the citizen and the well-disposed soldier.
Citizens and soldiers are, therefore, called upon to arrest and
forward to the provost-marshal-general all persons guilty of wanton
destruction or illegal seizure of property, that examples may be
immediately made. The laws of war justify the execution of such
offenders, and those laws shall govern.
II. Officers are held responsible that their men conduct themselves
properly. In any cases where it is shown that an officer, high or
low, has permitted or failed to take proper steps to prevent such
depredations as those complained of herein, he shall be deprived of
III. Hereafter all cavalry horses must be branded. Division and
brigade commanders will determine the manner so as to best designate
the commands to which they belong. No purchase or exchange of horses
will be permitted except by authority of the company and regimental
commanders. In each case of such purchase or exchange the soldier
must receive a written statement of the transaction. Any soldier
otherwise introducing a horse into any command will be immediately
arrested. General, field, and company officers are expected, and,
are earnestly requested, to give this matter their attention.
Officers failing must be arrested. In procuring forage, the least
possible damage must be done the farmer. Too much attention cannot
be given this. At best, he is compelled to suffer.
IV. Citizens are warned not to purchase from or exchange horses with
soldiers, except when the authority for the transaction is
previously had from the company and regimental commanders. Otherwise
they may lose their property and will fail to receive the support of
the military authorities.
By command of General Hood:
Major and Assistant Adjutant-General.