lina. The letter explains itself, and I have merely to request an answer from you whether the acts complained of by the Governor have your sanction; and whether, as he desires to know, the negroes mentioned will be returned to their muster? I also beg leave to inclose a slip from the Raleigh Standard in relation to the prisoners recently paroled and released by me at Kinston and other places between here and Goldsborough, and request to know whether these men are compelled to perform the duties therein stated contrary to their parole of honor. Some time during the latter part of November Surgeon Hunt, post surgeon at Washington, N. C., while taking a ride outside of our lines, was fired upon by parties in ambush and killed immediately. His person was rifled, and, among other things, a watch was taken from him which his relatives are very anxious to obtain possession of. If it is within your power will you please have this watch returned?
I remain, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. G. FOSTER,
DEPARTMENT OF NORTH CAROLINA,
New Berne, N. C., December 29, 1862.
Major General J. G. FOSTER,
GENERAL: I have been informed that a portion of the forces of the enemies of the United States recently invaded the county of Washington and, among other depredations committed upon innocent citizens, they seized and carried away against their consent and against the consent of their owners a large number of slaves. From the home of Mr. M. Bowen they took away several of his negroes who had been faithful to him, and whom he protected and humanely supported. This outrage has not the defense attempted for the African slave trade, "that it brought uncivilized beings under the influence of Christianity and civilization." This robbery takes civilized beings from their families and homes; if deprives a kind master of his property and punishes slaves for their fidelity to him. I cannot believe the good people of North Carolina will justify such conduct. To the barbarous and willful burning of the town of Plymouth by the enemy your attention has already been called, and of that nothing more need be said. As the voice of civil authority outside of our lines has no longer any potency, I solicit your intervention with those commanding the forces of the so-called Confederate States, that we may ascertain by what rules this war is to be conducted, and whatever those negroes to whom I have referred to be delivered up to those to whom their services may be due.
I have the honor to be, &c.,
Military Governor, &c.