War of the Rebellion: Serial 114 Page 0511 EARLY EVENTS IN MISSOURI, ETC.

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Negotiations for Exchange of Prisoners between Generals Grant and Polk and their Subordinates.

UNION CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT SOUTHEAST MISSOURI,

Cairo, Ill., September 25, 1861.

Lieutenant Colonel E. P. WOOD, Commanding Fort Holt, Ky.:

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Take two leading secessioists from the neighborhood of Elliott's Mills prisoners to be held as hostages for the safety of William Mercer a Union man and Kentuckian, taken by the invaders of his State and carried to Columbus or elsewhere as a prisoner.

By order of Brigadier-General Grant:

JNO A. RAWLIS,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

HDQRS. FIRST DIVISION, WESTERN DEPARTMENT,

October 14, 1861.

COMMANDING OFFICER, Cairo and Bird's Point:

I have in my camp a number of prisoners of the Federal Army and am informed there are prisoners belonging to the Missouri State Troops in yours. I propose an exchange of these prisoners and for that purpose send Captain Polk, of the artillery, and Lieutenant Smith, of the infantry, both of the C. S. Army, with a flag of truce to deliver to you this communication and to know your pleasure in regard to my proposal.

The principles recognized in the exchange of prisoners effected on the 3rd of September between Brigadier-General Pillow, of the Confederate army, and Colonel Wallace, of the U. S. Army, are those I propose as the basic of that now contemplated.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

L. POLK,

Major-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF SOUTHEAST MISSOURI,

Cairo, October 14, 1861.

Major-General POLK, Columbus, Ky.

GENERAL: Yours of this date is just received. In regard to the exchange of prisoners proposed I can of my own accord make none. I recognize no Southern Confederacy myself but will communicate with higher authority for their views. Should I not be sustained I will find means of communicating with you.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

U. S. GRANT,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

BRIGADE HEADQUARTERS,

Camp Cairo, October 23, 1861.

Captain CHAUNCEY McKEEVER,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Saint Louis, Mo.

SIR: I am instructed by Brigadier-General McClernand, commanding at this post, to inclose, first, copy of his communication to the officer