War of the Rebellion: Serial 114 Page 0592 PRISONERS OF WAR, ETC.

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paid by the city. Yesterday I addressed a letter to the mayor* ordering the payment to be discontinued. I think he will obey it. If he does not I shall arrest him and make a like order on the city comptroller who will obey.

I did not intend to trouble you with this mater until it was ended, but as I perceive by Colonel Marcy's+ letter that the condition of things has been represented to you by zealous persons as less favorable than it really is I have thought it best to mention now what I am doing. The city is perfectly quiet and perfectly under control by the police force alone. If there is an uprising on the Eastern Shore under the influence of the rebel organizations in Accomack and Northampton, or if the Confederate forces cross the Potomac we may have trouble. I shal endeavor to be ready for it whenever it comes. My regiments are for the most part new and I very much want a good brigadier-general. I have none as yet.

I think it very desirable that you should see the provost-marshal of this city. He is a very respectable citizen, is thoroughly acquainted with the condition of the city and I think can relieve you from much of the anxiety which it is natural you should feel from the representations of uneasy persons who I know have visited Washington and have communicated their apprehensions to members of the Government.

I had a very satisfactory interview with Secretary Seward to-day on these matters. Still I think it would be well for you to see the provost-marshal, and if you will name a day he will call on you in Washington.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX,

Major-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA,

Baltimore, Md., September 5, 1861.

Major General G. B. McCLELLAN,

Commanding Army of the Potomac.

GENERAL: Fort McHenry which has not sufficient space for the convenient accommodation of the number of men necessary to man its guns is crowded with prisoners. Beside our own criminals awaiting trial or under sentence we have eleven State prisoners. To this number six more will be added to-morrow. I do not think this a suitable place for them if we had ample room. It is too near the seat of war which may possibly be extended to us. It is also too near a great town in which there are multitudes who sympathize with them who are constantly applying for interviews and who must be admitted with the hazard of becoming the media of improper communications, or who go away with the feeling that they have been harshly treated because they have been denied access to their friends.

It is very desirable that an end should be put to these dangers on the one hand an annoyances on the other. If as is supposed Fort Lafayette is crowded may they not be provided for at Fort Delaware? There are several prisoners here who are under indictment. I concur in the correctness of the reasoning, but is there any impropriety if their safety requires it in taking them temporarily beyond the jurisdiction of the court by which they must be tried to the remanded when the court is ready for their trial? I confess I do not see that any principle

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*See Dix to Brown, p. 644.

+Not found.

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