Kansas City, September 30, 1861.
Headquarters Western Department, Saint Louis, Mo.
SIR: I would respectfully ask some information in regard to the disposition to be made of prisoners released by the rebel forces. I am aware that the subject is one which has occupied the attention of the Government but am not aware that any conclusion has been arrived at n regard to their disposition. At the present time I find myself somewhat embarrassed by the great number of prisoners returning from Lexington, Mo., and especially so in regard to the officers. Two or rather one application has ben made to me by General Price and one to General Lane on the subject of the exchange of officers. In the case of the proposed exchange with General Lane I have referred the matter to him, but in regard to the proposed exchange for an officer of the rebel forces who is now here I have postponed any action until I will have received some information on the subject from higher authority.
I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,
S. D. STURGIS,
CHILLICOTHE, MO., October 1, 1861.
Captain CHAUNCEY McKEEVER,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Saint Louis, Mo.
SIR: Your polite communication of September 25 is just received. Your instructions in regard to military prisoners have been anticipated and acted upon. Those sent by me from Hannibal were sent in accordance with an order from the major-general commanding through his military secretary, Major Eaton. In regard to communications addressed to headquarters I have to say that the one returned by you was written under my direction and signed in my own name as commanding officer of the regiment. The signature of the adjutant was unknown to me and altogether gratuitous, neither adding to nor detracting from the import of the communication. I return the papers and letter addressed to Governor Robinson as you direct and respectfully ask your early attention to the business to which they pertain.
O. E. LEARNARD,
Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding First Regiment Kansas Volunteers.
HEADQUARTERS, WESTERN DEPARTMENT,
Saint Louis, October 4, 1861.
Brigadier General S. R. CURTIS,
Commanding, &c., Benton Barracks.
SIR: In obedience to General Orders, Numbers 69, War Department, Adjutant-General's Office, dated Washington, August 28, 1861, the major-general commanding directs that you discharge from the service forthwith all enlisted men in the volunteer service under your command who have been taken prisoners by the enemy and released on parole.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,