In its first five months the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands was completely inactive in Florida. An assistant commissioner - that is, state head of the Bureau - was appointed early enough, but he had charge also of Georgia and South Carolina, and he limited both his interests and his activities to the Palmetto State. He was General Rufus Saxton, an ardent abolitionist and a long-time protege of Salmon P. Chase. During most of the war he had been in charge of the Sea Islands Experiment with free Negro labor. In the early months of the Freedmen’s Bureau he used his office as assistant commissioner to continue his work on the Sea Islands, but did little more, assigning only three men to do the work of the Bureau on the mainland of South Carolina, only two for all Georgia, and none at all for Florida.
Bentley, George R.
"The Political Activity of the Freedmen’s Bureau in Florida,"
Florida Historical Quarterly: Vol. 28:
1, Article 5.
Available at: https://stars.library.ucf.edu/fhq/vol28/iss1/5