The question of traffic at Norfolk was discussed in Cabinet. General Dix has, I see, made some headway. Stanton wanted to transfer the whole subject of permits for army supplies and intercourse to General Dix. Chase thought there should be leave granted for return cargoes also. I requested, if there was to be a modification of the blockade, that it should be distinctly understood and announced to what extent. If traffic was to be authorized, it should be publicly known. Let us not have the shame, demoralization, and wrong of making a measure of this kind a cover for favoritism. No distinct conclusion was arrived at.
SOURCE: Gideon Welles, Diary of Gideon Welles, Secretary of the Navy Under Lincoln and Johnson, Vol. 1: 1861 – March 30, 1864, p. 175