That at the time I was informed that Mr. Blair sought the card as a means of getting to Richmond, Va.; but he was given no authority to speak or act for the Government, nor was I informed of anything he would say or do on his won account or otherwise. Afterward Mr. Blair told me that he had been to Richmond, and had seen Mr. Jefferson David; and he (Mr. B.) at the same time left with me a manuscript letter as follows, to wit:
RICHMOND, VA., January 12, 1865.
F. P. BLAIR, Esq.:
SIR: I have deemed it proper, and probably desirable to you, to give you in this form the substance of remarks by me, to be repeated by you to President Lincoln, &c.
I have no disposition to find obstacles in forms, and am willing, now as heretofore, to enter into negotiations for the restoration of peace; and am ready to send a commission, whenever I have reason to suppose it will be received, or to receive a commission, if the United States Government shall choose to send one. That not with-standing the rejection of our former offers, I would, if you could promise that a commissioner, minister, or other agent would be received, appoint one immediately, and renew the effort to enter into conference, with a view to secure peace to the tow countries.
Afterward, and with the view that it should be shown to Mr. Davis, I wrote and delivered to Mr Blair a letter, as follows, to wit:
WASHINGTON, January 18, 1865.
F. P. BLAIR, Edq.:
SIR: Your having shown me Mr. Davis' letter to you of the 12th instant, you may say to him that I have constantly been, as now, and shall continue ready to receive any agent whom he, or any other influential person now resisting the national authority, may informally send to me with the view of securing peace to the people of our one common country.
Afterward Mr. Blair dictated for and authorized me to make an entry on the back of my retained copy of the letter last above recited, which entry is as follows:
JANUARY 28, 1865.
To-day Mr. Blair tells me that on the 21st instant he delivered to Mr. Davis the original, of which the within is a copy, and left it with him; that at the time of delivering it Mr. Davis read it over twice in Mr. Blair's presence, at the close of which he (Mr. Blair) remarked that the part about "our one common country" related to the part of Mr. Davis' letter about "the two countries," to which Mr. David replied that he so understood it.
Afterward the Secretary of War placed in my hands the following telegram, indorsed by him as appears:
OFFICE U. S. MILITARY TELEGRAPH, WAR DEPARTMENT.
The following telegram received at Washington, January 29, 1865, from headquarters Army of the James, 6.30 p. m. January 29, 1865:
"Honorable EDWIN M. STANTON,
"Secretary of War:
"The following dispatch just received from Major-General Parke, who refers it to me for my action. I refer it to you in Lieutenant- General Grant's absence.
"E. O. C. ORD,