WASHINGTON, October 30, 1861.
His Excellency ABRAHAM LINCOLN,
Presidnet of the United State.
RESPECTED SIR: I would be extremely gratified (having come from Baltimore this a. m. for the purpose) if you would devote a few moments of your much taken up time for my benefit in behalf of my husband, now confined in Fort Lafayette, N. Y., whose relcase has been ordered but not fully consummated owing to a very trifling circumstance which I am extremely anxious to state to Your Excellency. Fully aware as I am that your mind is now overtaxed almost beyond endurance and the very early hour at which I cll being unusual, still long, tedious suffering and privation from his want of occupation may apologize for the promptings of a wife to plead in behalf of her great trouble and distress and interview with Your Excellency for but a few moments previous to the press ast sbusiness hours.
Hoping my request of your clemency may be granted, I am, very esteemed sir, yours, respectfully, &c.,
MRS. CECILIA WILLIAMS.
I also send a letter of introduction from Major-General Dix to Hi Honor W. H. Seward, Secretary of State, showing his views from a knowledge of the case.
DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 30, 1861.
W. M. ADDISON, Esq., U. S. District Attorney, Baltimore, Md.
SIR: Application has been made to this Department for instructions to you tto draw the bond in the case of John Williams, a prisoner in Fort Lafayette, so as to make the sureties liable severally instead of jointly. If you see no grave objection to such procedure and if the sureties severally are responsible for the amounts pledged you are at liberty to accept the bond in that form.
I am, sir, your obedient servant,
F. W. SEWARD,
DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 31, 1861.
Major General JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore, Md.
GENERAL: In answer to your note of the 29th instant which was handed to me by Mrs. Williams I have to state that the U. S. district attorney, William M. Addison, esq., has been authorized to accept the sureties in the case of John Williams severally instead of jointly as you suggest.
I have the honor to be, general, your obedinet servant,
WILLIAM H. SEWARD.
OFFICE OF U. S. ATTORNEY, Baltimore, October 31, 1861.
Honorable WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.
SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 30th insstant in reference to the bond of John Williams, a prisoner in Fort Lafayette. In it you state that if I see no grave objection to making the sureties therein liable severally instead of jointly I am at liberty to accept a bond in that form. I presume the object of your