would suggest the advisability of ordering to the North the old soldiers of the company; but if it be not in the limits of your authority to do so, I respectfully recommend that that portion of the company which has been on duty here so long be ordered to Key West, in order that the men may avail themselves of the tropical fruits and vegetables to be procured at that place, and for the benefit otherwise to be derived from change of air.
I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF FLORIDA,
Fort Pickens, May 14, 1861.
Lieutenant Colonel E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General:
COLONEL: Since my letter of yesterday I have dispatches from Major French, commanding Key West, and among other reports that he has suspended the writ of habeas corpus at Key West. When I was there on my way to this place I left in the hands of Major French a proclamation, to be published when a contingency requiring it should arise. He considers that it has done so. I inclose his letter (A) to me and my answer (B).
The Water Witch, which was dispatched to Havana for sand bags, has returned with some, with which we can finish or defenses.
I was misinformed as to there being 10-inch sea-coast mortars at tortugas. There are none there or at Key West.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Major, Second Artillery, Colonel, Commanding.
HEADQUARTERS TROOPS OF KEY WEST,
May 8, 1861.
Captain GEORGE L. HARTSUFF,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Hdqrs. Department Florida:
CAPTAIN: I the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 2nd instant this 10 a. m. There have been no secession flags flying since my peremptory order on the subject. The military organization called the "Island Guards" has disbanded, in consequence of my directing the mayor to furnish me with the muster roll, which he did. The newspaper called the "Key of the Gulf" I suppressed, be cause it was uttering treasonable and threatening language against the judiciary and other United States officers. I directed the mayor to inform the editor (a Mr. Ward) that he was under military surveillance, and that the fact of his not being in the cells of this fort for treason was simply a matter as to expediency and proper point of time. To enable me to meet such cases with promptitude, I published on the 6th instant Colonel Brown's proclamation suspending the writ of habeas corpus. At this date I have not deemed it advisable to follow it with any restrictions upon the municipal authorities or the citizens of the town. As cases have arisen they were at once met, and I will continue this gradual enforcement of the power of the U. S. Government, thus allowing loyal citizens aid and support in their duties and pursuits.
I have the gratification to know that my course has the approval of the judicial officers here, and has given universal satisfaction to the