stay at home he infers hastily but kindly that I am in a condition of mind to accept whatever terms the Government might exact as the condition of my security. He has confounded an inference with a fact. It is a total miscounception of me when [he] says Iocure a perpetual safeguard for me. He admits that I never saud a word he. So that in the dark his ardent friendship for me induced the conclusion that I had made up my mind to take a safeguard without regard to its terms or conditions. I did not know what terms the Government would impose. Really wishing to remain if I could consistently with my principles and my honor I felt a strong desire to know what the Government would do or propose. The ten days were expiring and I wished to see and considered the stilulations. I had not a shadow a matter of is great moment. And when I returned the safeguard having ultimately resolved on my course I thought the negotiation was at an end, and in my opinion the relations between myself and the Governemtn were the same as before the negotiations were begun.
The commission will remember that the distinct understanding of the officers, Colonels Steele and Brown, was that a failure to come to terms would place me back in the position of an enemy to the Government. I had no doubt that when aI returned the safeguard I had the right to act as the enemy of the government. But I wished to the consideration of the commission whether I was to a prisoner. I was the open enemy of the Government and an officer in the army at war with the Government. Without my knowledge upon the voluntary my persons friend, the Government upon its own motion sought an interview with me proclaiming that I should have the privilege to pass in and out of its lines, and if no arrangement was made mutually satisfactory to the Government and myself that I shoud be where I was before the interview - an enemy still - the Government upon any military usage treat me as a criminal in such a state of facts even if I had been mean enought not to respond by my action to the magnanimity the Government extended to me?
In defining to the witness Colonel Hughes the nature of a parole of honor the president of the commission said it was a promise on honor made by a prisoners to some competent military officer authorized to take it. As far as I have been able to inform myself this definition is correct. The essential element of a parole is a promise given by one in the power of the Government by virtue of in consideration of which the Government by virtue or modify its exercise. I was not in the power of the Government at the time. The Government distinctly recognized that fact; but acting under the promptings of a high humanity it chose voluntarily to extend to me, and enemy, a kindness,