Barton might be directed to release Lieutenant Head for arrest. I saw Colonel Halpine personally in regard to it, and while he said my request was a very proper one, he deemed it only justice to Lieutenant Head as well as to the service that it should be brought to court-martial, "as," he said, "he considered any charges which could be preferred would be frivolous and vexatious." He directed me to send another officer there, and I sent Lieutenant Bruyn. On the 8th, no action having been had in the mater. I addressed a second communication to Colonel Halpine, asking that Colonel Barton might be directed to release him from arrest or prefer charges at once. On the 10th, he was released by Colonel Barton without any charges being preferred. I consider it a gratuitous indignity to the signal service, that the commandant by another such officer, and I would respectfully ask for instructions as to how to prevent a repetition of the indignity should a signal officer be placed at a post commanded by another such officer, and I would respectfully ask for instructions as to how to prevent such unwarrantable interference by subordinate commanders with signal officer and lines. I received a letter, dated June 2, from Lieutenant [Thomas H.] Carrique, acting signal officer, stationed on the U. S. S. Pawnee, inclosing copy of communication from Rear-Admiral DuPont authorizing the commander of the Pawnee to have his executive officer, Lieutenant [Francis M.] Brunce, instructed in the army code of signals. I inclosed the communication to Major-General Hunter with a communication of my own, stating that acting signal officers were pledged to divulge no part of the system or code to any person, excepting those properly authorized to be instructed.
My communication was returned with indorsement signed by command of Major-General Hunter, to the effect that the desire of the admiral, as expressed, could not be disregarded, and directing me to cause the officer on the Pawnee to instruct Lieutenant Bunce after he had signed the usual pledge of acting signal officers, and I gave such directions to Lieutenant Carriques. He reports that Lieutenant Bunce is progressing favorably in knowledge of the code, and he thinks he will make a fair signal officer. If it is not presumptuous on my part to do so, I would respectfully suggest that, in my opinion, very little credit will accrue to the signal service in this department from the instruction of officers of the navy, who will not make it a specialty, and acquire only a superficial knowledge of the system, not enough to be of practical value in most instances, and they do not hesitate to speak publicly of the numbers used in the presence of persons unauthorized to know them; and it must detract, at least, from the dignity of the code to have it made a subject of common chat among theirs must work discredit to the army signal any inefficiency of cannot know that a good signal officer can only be made by diligent study and practice, which we have not the power to compel a naval officer to give to the code. I have received a communication from your officer directing me to instruct officers in the cipher signals, and have them used exclusively in transmitting official messages. I am teaching it as rapidly as possible to the officers of the corps, but have not given any information, even of its existence, to any naval officers, as your orders do not include them, and, in my opinion, to instruct them in it would defeat its object. As some of our officers