Army and Navy for assistance, and in his name call upon him for the two companies. You will show the authority named to the officer, whether he does or does not rank the colonel commanding.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
GEO. L. HARTSUFF,
HEADQUARTERS TROOPS STATIONED AT KEY WEST,
May 2, 1861.
Captain T. A. M. CRAVEN, Commanding U. S. Steamer Crusader:
CAPTAIN: I have it from a reliable source that certain citizens of Tampa have threatened to burn the steamer Salvor and destroy the property of her owner, on the ground that he took cattle to the Tortugas for the use of the United States troops. It is absolutely essential to these keys that the communications with the mainland be uninterrupted, and I would respectfully suggest for your consideration the advantage of a military demonstration in the localities liable to be trouble-some, giving those people who are disposed to annoy an opportunity for a little serious reflection upon the fact that they receive no immunity from this quarter. I am not aware that they have reverted to the State or to individuals. Should this be so, and you should be obliged to act strongly, sacrificing them might produce the desired effect without further procedure. Should you desire material or additional men they will readily be furnished upon your requisition.
I am, captain, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,
WM. H. FRENCH,
Brevet Major, U. S. Army, Commanding.
FORT TAYLOR, May 4, 1861.
J. P. BALDWIN, Esq., Mayor, Key West City:
MY DEAR SIR: I proposed on yesterday to print an address to the citizens of the United States on Key West. The address was delayed, and I take the opportunity to say to you, in continuation of the conversation had a few days since, that from circumstances brought to my attention direct, and from reliable sources, it is my opinion that there will be a strong effort made to distress the inhabitants of this key. Isolated and shut up by the water of the Gulf, should what I hear prove correct, the distress would be extreme upon the inhabitants of the island. It is in your power to aid in avoiding this contingency, which, whether near or remote, will be terrible when it comes. I have served in Florida during the early wars, and remember the distress of the inhabitants of Saint Augustine, to whom the government had to furnish subsistence. It is probable that such may be the case on the key. The government determining to hold it will be responsible for its loyal citizens; and should the necessities referred to arise, it will be necessary to discriminate, and those who do not belong here should be so notified.
It is also essential that it should be generally known that the functions of the commanding officer on Key West, ex officio, embrace during the present crisis all the military, including citizens desirous to bear arms for the preservation of life and property. It will be necessary for me,