My competitor, Mr. Baxter, who received not 500 votes in the district, was at Richmond while I was myself there, and it may be that his counsels prevailed in the matter, and the order for Brownlow's passport was induced by his arguments or persuasions. I certainly advised no such policy.
A word or two more. In one county of East Tennessee (Scott) the Stars and Stripes have been hoisted within a few days past. Our few friends there have been seized and taken into Kentucky by emissaries from the Lincoln camps, and these emissaries were guided and directed by a man who was recently discharged at Nashville by Mr. Benjamin's order, at the instance of Mr. Baxter and others, whose co-operation he was influential enough to secure. Will we never be done with such policy?
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
WM. G. SWAN.
KNOXVILLE, TENN., December 7, 1861.
Honorable JEFFERSON DAVIS,
President Confederate States of America:
SIR: The Confederate civil authorities here had Mr. Brownlow arrested last evening under a charge of treason. He is now in jail. It is understood that parties in this place are taking, or perhaps have already taken, measures to apply for executive clemency in his behalf, and turn him at large or transfer him under a military escort to the enemy's lines in Kentucky.
To this course we enter our most respectful but decided protest and remonstrance.
During the whole summer and fall the civil and military power of your Government has arrested, tried, convicted, and punished (in some cases capitally, in others with more leniency) the poor and insignificant dupes of Brownlow's treasonable teachings and example. A car load of these ignorant tories were sent this morning to Tuscaloosa, Ala.; and now the proposition to release the prime mover and instigator of all this rebellion against the South and Tennessee and send him an authorized emissary to the headquarters of the enemy, dignified with an escort of our Tennessee soldiery, has startled this community, embracing in the number citizens and most of the army here. The feeling of indignation at the bare effort for his release is much intensified by the fact, which, as it may not be fully known at Richmond, we take leave to bring to your attention, viz, that the prisoner, shortly before the burning of our railroad bridges and other acts of incendiarism and disloyalty, had left town and visited Blount and Sevier Counties, the residence of the malcontents who are known as the incendiaries, and the suspicion is widely entertained that he prompted and instigated that an other atrocities. This peregrination into the most disloyal and disaffected neighborhoods makes him the more familiar with the extent of the disaffection-their plans, purposes, &c.
A more dangerous and more capable emissary could not be found in the Southern Confederacy to stimulate invasion of Tennessee and advise and carry into effect kind of mischief. His arrival in Kentucky and Lincolndom generally would be hailed as a greater achievement than the capture of Zollicoffer and his brave troops.
We do not deem it necessary to enlarge further on the subject, but we earnestly advise against the proposed release and transportation to