several pieces of cannon. This last intelligence was given us by the flag of truce sent me yesterday in answer to one from me some days before, proposing an exchange of prisoners. The flag was borne by Buford (N. B.), whom you recollect as my classmate at West Point from Kentucky. He is colonel of the Twenty-seventh Illinois Regiment. He was very cordial and talked freely of the war in general.
They released all they had left having released others before receiving my proposal and I released to him those in my camp. I do not credit the story in regard to Thompson as I have been informed since hearing it that he was advised of the approach of the force that was said to have defeated him. * * *
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
COLUMBUS, KY., November 8, 1861.
I have a large number of wounded prisoners here without hospital conveniences for them. The enemy with flag of truce ask for them. Shall I give them? And on what terms shall I accept our wounded prisoners offered me?
RICHMOND, November 10, 1861.
Major General L. POLK:
Make full exchange if possible; if not exchnge on equal terms.
Adjutant and Inspector General.
RICHMOND, November 11, 1861.
Major General L. POLK, Columbus, Ky.:
Exchange your prisoners on the best equal terms you can get. An unconditional exchange preferred. If you cannot exchnge give up all that are seriously wounded after taking a strict parole.
J. P. BENJAMIN,
Acting Secretary of War.
COLUMBUS, Novebmer 16, 1861.
Your dispatch revoking order for Pillow's command received. I have exchanged prisoners under flag of truce with Grant giving him all his wounded for the whole of my wounded and well men leaving 100 stll in my hands whom I have sent to Memphis for safe-keeping; all of my wounded gone to their homes or to hospital in Memphis.
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