therefore you will prmit no interference by the persons under your command with the relations of persons held to service under the laws of any State you will on the other hand so long as any State within which your military operations are conducted is under the control of such armed combinations refrain from surrendering to alleged mastes any pesons who may come within your lines. You will employ such persons in the service to which they may be best adapted, keeping an account of the labor by them prfomre, d of the value of it and of the expense of their maintenance. The question of their final disposition will be reserved for future determination.
Secretary of War.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF FLORIDA,
Fort Pickens, June 22, 1861.
Lieutenant Colonel E. D. TOWNSEND,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Washington, D. C.
COLONEL: * * * I shall not send the negroes back as I will never be voluntarily instrumental in returning a poor wretch to slavery but will hold them subject to orders.
* * * *
HEADQUARTERS SCHENCK'S BRIGADE,
Camp Upton, Va., July 6, 1861.
Captain JAMES B. FRY,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters Arlington.
SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 2nd instant with letters of Mrs. Caroline F. Noland and John G. England, referred from the headquarters of the Army, in relation to two slaves belonging to persons in Rockville, Md., which slaves are claimed to be in this camp. I am requested to give my attetnion to the matter of these slaves and if they are within the limits of my command to have them returned to their owners when demanded. And I am also reminded that the case of one of them was referred to me some days since when as would appear from one of the accompanying letters the order of the general commanding was not executed in consequence of the intereference of some of the soldiers. I return now all t he letters on the subject and have to make in reply this statement:
When the negroes are alleged to have taken refuge or been first seen within the limits of the First or Second Ohio Regiments I was not in command. That is indestood to relate to a time when thetroops were encamped within the Department of Washington. Afterward on the day when certain parties appeared in this camp with the letter of Assistant Adjutant-General Townsend of the 25th of June, referred to me from headquarters, Ihappened to be temporarily absent. Colonel McCook, of the First Ohio Regiment, the senior officer present, gave his immediate attention to the matter; and I refer to the inclosed statements from himself and Lieutenant-Colonel Parrott* to show that there was no such evasion of or refusal to execute the order of the