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day and at night having cut wooden paddles from tree started. Toward morning came across a boat which they endeavored to avoid by hiding in bushes. To their horror, however, boat came alongside, but-subsequent joy-turned out to be Lieutenants Agey and Logan and two Sergeants Rhodes, who escaped a previous Tuesday in disguise of rebel soldiers and having around waists a bag with flour, dried peaches, &c., and files, salt in boots, and they subsequently escaped in boat. The two boats then kept together safely 600 miles by night with oars muffled with cypress moss. On the 11th reached Hawkinsville, where three small deserted steamers were tied up. Passed by without observation. On trip where persons (were) observed ou bank, cheered for Davis and said were messengers from Davis. On the 17th reached Wolf Island, in Altamaha Sound. Next day reached Sapelo Island; found deserted. On the 18th went aboard steamer Wamsutta which next day transferred to steamer Florida at Saint Simon's Sound. Put aboard steamer Massachusetts, which brought us to Fort Monroe. They report Lieutenant Bliss, of Fifty-eighth Illinois (Second Michigan Battery], on May 1, was wantonly murdered by the rebel guard.
J. ROBLEY DUNGLISON.
SAINT LOUIS, MO., July 7, 1862. Hon. E. M. STANTON:
Hundreds of Missouri troops taken prisoners at Shiloh and paroled are now at Cairo in suffering condition. Be good enough to order them here.
H. R. GAMBLE.
Washington, July 7, 1862. Hon. WILLIAM A. BUCKINGHAM, Governor of Connecticut.
SIR: In reply to your letter of the 19th ultimo I have respectfully to inform you that the Government is making no exchanges of prisoners at present and that separate cases will not be taken up. I am, &c.,
Washington, July 7, 1862. Col. G. LOOMIS, U. 8. Army, Fort Columbus, N. Y.:
Send 100 of the prisoners arriving at Fort Columbus to Fort Warren and the rest to Fort Delaware.
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,
Camp near Harrison's Landing, Va., July 7, 1862. Maj. Gen. JOHN A. Dix, Commanding Fort Monroe.
GENERAL: The general commanding refers to your discretion the inclosed letter from Charles M. Hubbard and others, prisoners confined at Fort Wool, and directs that you cause all of those referred to in the letter who can be discharged with safety to the public service to be conveyed to some suitable point whence they may return to their homes. You will cause them to be provided with necessary subsistence during their return. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
THOMAS M. KEY,
Colonel and Aide-de-Camp. (Inclosurs. ]
FORT Wool, July 1, 1862. General MCCLELLAN:
We propose to present to your consideration the following facts: There are now about 100 citizens of Virginia who have in no way been connected with the present war confined at this place. They were taken from their homes or arrested by bands of armed men, separated from their families, and are here imprisoned and not even informed of the charges if any there be on which they were arrested. They know not on what evidence they were arrested nor have they been confronted with their accusers. They are denied all intercourse with the world and are here confined with the same hard fare alike for the sick and well, good and bad huddled together without respect for their rights or person. When taken from their homes they were assured by the officers who arrested them that they would be detained but a few hours and then would be restored to their homes and families. They were then induced to leave home without a change of clothes and are now (covered with] vermin of this prison house, without a change of clothing. They are without funds with which they can procure the necessaries or comforts with which to promote cleanliness or preserve health. Their families are without any protection, surrounded by slaves and camp followers, from the unprincipled and violent hands of whom every species of wrong may be anticipated. From the rumors that reach us through the citizens who have been most recently sent here many of us believe that our slaves have left us; that our household furniture has been wantonly destroyed; that the provision designed for the use of our families during the present year has been forcibly taken from them, and that our growing crops have been wasted and destroyed, and that our homes except for the presence of loved wives and children are barren deserts.
Much more might with truth and propriety be said, but surely this is enough of the sad picture which has resulted from our effort to remain at our homes and protect those who are dependent on us, when we believed that our property and persons would not be violated by those who were seeking to restore a humane and liberal Government. Our friends advised us that it was best that we should remain at home. Our reason and judgment approved the advice and your proclamation inviting the citizens to remain at home and assuring them protection confirmed us in the propriety of that course. Alas! alas! How vain were our expectations! How we have been disappointed! Why are we here? We know that we are here and can well imagine the sufferings of all who are dear to us. How long shall this continue? We cannot believe that you have caused us to be imprisoned in violation of the assurances of your proclamation. We cannot realize that the Government of the United States thus refuses us our liberty, wastes our property and places our persons on this island of rock that we may by cruelty and oppression be taught to hate the Government under which we were born.
As citizens of Virginia we ask that we may be at once released from this prison.
CHARLES M. HUBBARD, of James City,
Committee in behalf of the whole.
HEADQUARTERS, Fort Monroe, Va., July 7, 1862. Messrs. LITTLETON, PIERCE and HUBBARD,
Prisoners of State, Fort Wool. GENTLEMEN: I am directed by Major-General Dix to say in reply to your letter* of this date that he will forward any proper communication from you to Richmond by the first flag of truce; that he holds you under orders from General McClellan and does not know for whom you are held as hostages. If you are in want of any articles needful for your personal comfort he will be glad to supply them. A personal interview he cannot at present conveniently grant. By command of Major General Dix: Yours, respectfully,
Captain and Aide-de-Camp.
HEADQUARTERS SAINT LOUIS DISTRICT,
Saint Louis, Mo., July 7, 1862. Colonel FARRAR, Provost- Marshal-General.
Sir: Certain of the prisoners of war confined in McDowell's College having escaped in disguise as negroes you will immediately on receipt of this designate some one to call upon Colonel Tuttle and request him to exclude from the prison all negroes. A proper temporary provision will be made for their shelter elsewhere. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
SCHUYLER HAMILTON, Brig. Gen. of Vols., U. S. Army, Comdg. Saint Louis District.
(Copy to Colonel Tuttle, commanding Saint Louis District.)
SPECIAL ORDERS, HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF MISSOURI,
Saint Louis, July 7, 1862. From the report of Col. J. M. Glover of an investigation made by him in pursuance of orders from these headquarters of the circumstances under which one Colonel Best, a rebel spy, was executed by Major Tompkins, Thirteenth Cavalry, Missouri State Militia, and affidavits accompanying said report, it is evident that the said Colonel Best richly deserved his fate and would have received it at the hands of a military commission bad he been tried; yet his case does not appear to have been one of that class which requires the summary punishment inflicted upon members of
* Not found, but see petition of Messrs. Hubbard, Pierce, Timberlake and Edwards, July 4, p. 144.
10 R R-SERIES II, VOL IV
guerrilla bands when actually taken in arms engaged in their unlawful warfare. Best was undoubtedly a spy and was engaged in inciting insurrection, but the laws of war do not justify the punishment of even these crimes without trial, nor do they justify such treatment of guerrillas under any circumstances except where the formal process of law has failed to arrest the evil. When it becomes necessary to dispense with the form of trial and execute certain classes of outlaws upon the spot orders directing this course must be construed strictly and literally, and officers charged with the execution of such orders must be held to the most rigid accountability for going beyond the terms of the order. The commanding general is satisfied, however, that while Major Tompkins erred in this case he did so honestly believing that he was discharging with strict fidelity an important and disagreeable duty. The command.
. ing general therefore takes pleasure in honorably acquitting Major Tompkins of all intentional wrong and in restoring bim to his command. Major Tompkins will be immediately released from arrest and return to duty with his regiment. By order of Brigadier-General Schofield:
C. W. MARSH, Assistant Adjutant-General.
SPECIAL ORDERS, HDQRS. CENTRAL DIVISION OF THE Miss.,
Trenton, Tenn., July 7, 1862. It being proven to the satisfaction of the general commanding that Robert Masley, Samuel Baker, Gilbert Patterson, of Weakley County, Tenn., and Samuel Abbott, Letts and sons, and Doctor Gardner, of Gibson County, Tenn., have aided and abetted the Southern rebellion and encouraged the burning of the road bridge over the Big Obion; also that J. F. Penn, William M. Jones, A. O. Dunnell, A, Brickhouse, Freeman and Tom Johnson have aided the rebellion by subscriptions of money and in various other ways, it is hereby ordered that the above-named persons take the oath of allegiance to the United States and proceed to immediately rebuild the above-named bridge. And any of the abovenamed persons failing to obey this order in any particular will be arrested and sent to these headquarters. Capt. John Lynch, Company E, Sixth Illinois Cavalry, is charged with the execution of this order. By order of Brig. Gen. G. M, Dodge:
GEO. M. REEDER, Lieutenant and Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
SPECIAL ORDERS, HDQRS. CENTRAL DIVISION OF THE MISS.,
Trenton, Tenn., July 7, 1862. The provost-marshal will arrest and hold in confinement any person refusing to take the oath. He will arrest all soldiers and officers returning from the rebel army who do not come forward voluntarily and take the oath. He will ascertain what property if any that can be used by the U. S. forces any persons who are now in the rebel army may own and report the same from time to time to these headquarters. By order of Brig. Gen. G. M, Dodge:
GEO. M. REEDER, Lieutenant and Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
OFFICE COMMISSARY-GENERAL OF PRISONERS,
Detroit, July 7, 1862. General M. C. MEIGS,
Quartermaster-General U. 8. Army, Washington, D. O. GENERAL: I have the honor to inclose a requisition for clothing required for prisoners of war at Fort Delaware. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. HOFFMAN, Colonel Third Infantry, Commissary-General of Prisoners.
(Inclosure.] Estimates of clothing to be furnished to the commanding officer of Fort Delaware, Capt. A. A. Gibson, Second Artillery, for prisoners of war:
1,000 blouses (or any substitute), 1,000 pants, 1,000 shirts, 500 blankets, 500 pairs shoes, 500 caps (or any substitute).
W. HOFFMAN, Colonel Third Infantry, Commissarg-General of Prisoners.
HEADQUARTERS, Camp Douglas, Chicago, July 7, 1862. Col. WILLIAM HOFFMAN,
Commissary-General of Prisoners, Detroit, Mich. COLONEL: I forward the inclosed papers, viz: Order* from Secretary of War for unconditional release of William Pinckney Jones, Third Mississippi Regiment, now a prisoner of war at Camp Douglas. Letter from the Hon. Schuyler Colfax to "Friend Spencer," and letter from J. S. Wigmore to commanding officer Camp Douglas for your instructions in the premises. These papers were received by express from Mr. Wigmore. A doubt is expressed in Mr. Colfax's letter whether Mr. Jones can accept the release before an exchange is arranged for certain other prisoners of the same regiment. Mr. Jones can throw no light on the matter, and wishes to know clearly the obligations he will assume if set at liberty. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JOSEPH H. TUCKER,
Colonel, Commanding Post. (Inclosure.]
MIDDLEPORT, ILL., June 25, 1862. COMMANDING OFFICER, Camp Douglas.
DEAR SIR: I send the inclosed to your care as there might be some delay if sent to Mr. Jones, the prisoner whom this release is for, trusting to your kindness to have it handed to him with letter from Hon. S. Colfax regarding his fellow-prisoners' release. Mr. Colfax's letter, if you will please read it, says he will have to wait until the rest are discharged. I should like to have him come here until that time, but how he will know what day their release will come if absent here I know not. You will confer a lasting favor on now your unknown friend if you will prompt him in regard to this matter, as he doubtless wishes to return to his wife and children. With much respect, I am, dear sir,
J. S. WIGMORE.
* Not found.