War of the Rebellion: Serial 006 Page 0670 OPERATIONS IN W. FLA., S. ALA., S. MISS., AND LA. Chapter XVI.

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Pensacola Observer, with a very laudatory editorial notice of him, and one not so very much so of me, in which I am accused, among other delinquencies, of being in cold blood a murdered of a such enemy.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Colonel, Commanding.



Fort Pickens, October 9, 1861.


Commanding Troops near Pensacola.

SIR: I observe this morning for the first time a yellow flag hoisted over a large building directly in front of my batteries. I also understand that officers' wives and children are in the adjoining buildings. I do not make war on the sick, women, or children. These buildings will necessarily be exposed to my fire should there be a bombardment, and, besides, they are subject under this flag to be used as a protection to any of your troops that may take shelter behind or before them. I therefore give you this notice, that the sick, the women, and the children may be removed, so that if fired on the responsibility may rest where it belongs.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Colonel, Commanding.


October 10, 1861.

SIR: I received late last evening your communication of that date with profound astonishment. The building on which you had for the first time observed a yellow flag has been well known to you and all your command, as well as to the United States Navy, as the military hospital of this station, and you could not help knowing that it is now used for that purpose.

Dealing with one who had been an old brother soldier of high reputation, I had hoped that our intercourse and conduct in the hostile attitude in which we are placed would be marked by all the courtesies and amenities of civilized warfare; but it seems from your communication that you claim the right to violate a hospital flag because it may be abused. Admit this principle, and we revert to a state of barbarism. The sick the women and the children, and prisoners must become the objects of vengeance; the white flag must be abolished; "booty and beauty," "rape un raping," must follow in the track of victorious commander. I decline you invitation to make these the object of war. Your hospital flag has been and shall be respected. In the affair of Tuesday night your hospital with its inmates was in our possession for at least one hour, and as far as I can learn my orders to scrupulously respect both were rigidly enforced.

Our hospital and the two adjacent building occupied by medical officers will continue to be used for legitimate purposes. Nothing has been or will be done to attract your fire. If, under circumstances, you should put your threat into execution, which would only be in accordance with the acts of some of your brother commanders of little experience in the customs of war, I shall take care the facts shall