War of the Rebellion: Serial 115 Page 0126 PRISONERS OF WAR, ETC.

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nations of the accused. So many improper arrests were made by self-constituted authorities that there was a physical impossibility of keeping them. To inflict any cruelty on them would not be tolerated by the laws of war or peace, and the consequence is many dangerous men are set free. Judge Catron says the commissioners can put them under bond and the bond will be good against their property or the property of their sureties.

As you can well understand we would soon fill all the places of confinement in Louisville were we to arrest and imprison all who may be dangerous. Leaders and conspicuous men never should be arrested unless in strong cases, and then an examination should be had before a commissioner of the United States.

I expect you up this week.

Yours, truly,


Brigadier-General, Commanding.

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, November 4, 1861.

Major General JOHN E. WOOL, U. S. Army,

Fortress Monroe, Va.

GENERAL: I have this day received a note from Major General George B. McClellan stating that within the past few days orders have been sent from his headquarters to you to pass over our lines two or three loyal citizens under flags of truce and that at the time of issuing of these orders it was not known to him that the power to grant such passes was confined to the State Department. He desires me to approve his action which under the circumstances I have done. You will therefore please permit the persons holding passes from him to go over our lines as directed.

I have the honor to be, general, your obedient servant,


Acting Secretary.

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, November 4, 1861.

SETH C. HAWLEY, Esq., New York.

SIR: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 31st ultimo informing me of your inability to execute the orders of this Department of the 29th ultimo in consequence of the removal of the prisoners from the forts in New York Harbor to Fort Warren, in Boston, Mass., and suggesting if it is the wish of the Department that you should proceed to that point and make the investigation required that instructions to the commanding officer of Fort Warren similar to those to the commandants of the forts in New York be forwarded to you.

In reply I inclose herewith such instructions to Colonel Dimick together with a note to Robert Murray, esq., the U. S. marshal for the southern district of New York, requesting him to accompany you and to give you all the aid in his power in-prosecuting your investigations.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Acting Secretary.