Baltimore, December 23, 1861.
Honorable WILLIAMH. SEWARD, Secretary of State.
SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 19th instant* inclosing a letter from Honorable Andrew A. Lynch, a member of the senate of this State, and asking my opinion thereon.
Mr. Lynch requests that he may be released on parole in order that he may take his seat and be heard by his peers when his case shall come before them for their action. It is to be presumed if the senate of Maryland takes up his case and decides to inquire into his past conduct excepting so far as it is shown by its own journals that he will be allowed an opportunity of vindicating himself from any accusations which may be brought against him. But until a wish is expressed by the senate that he shall be allowed to take his seat I do not think the Government is called on to release him for the purpose. The recent election shows that during the June session of the Maryland Legislature his disloyal course was in direct opposition to the wishes and opinions of his constituents and they cannot be supposed to desire his restoration to his place. To his conduct and that of his associates in the Legislature more than to any other cause are no doubt due the repeated demonstrations of the Confederates against the State of Maryland and the aid their army has received from this quarter.
Under these circumstances I think Mr. Lynch has no claim to the clemency of the Government; at the same time if he will resign his seat in the senate and allow his constituents an opportunity of filling his place by one who will not misrepresent them I would advise his release on the further condition that he take the oath of allegiance; or I would even suggest his release on parole if he will resign, though I would not advise a discharge from arrest without taking the oath of allegiance in other cases.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servan
P. S. -Mr. Lynch's letter is herewith returned.
Baltimore, December 24, 1861.
Honorable WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.
SIR: The friends of Honorable Lawrence Sangston, late a member of the house of delegates of this State, are very desirous that he should be permitted to return home for thirty days on parole. His wife is in very bad health and has six helpless daughters. I recommend that the permission be granted.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JOHN A. DIX,
*Not found; but see Lynch's letter of December 16, p. 718.