After some persuasion I agreed to go, especially as my own business was ruined and I wanted to go North to try and make arrangements to commence my business North. I had business in Boston with Fisher & Co., Tilton & Co., Abbot & Co, and J. T. & S. G. Thaver; in New York with Messrs. Charles M. Connelly & Co. and Buckley & Moore; in Philadelphia with Buckner, McCammon & Co., Mercer & Antels, Motz & Beam and Donan & Tait.
This business was purely of a peaceful nature. These were the only parties with whom I had any transactions. I received several letters and accounts and some moneys from these parties; also several letters I supposed of a peaceful and family nature left for me with the request that I would mail them in Nashville. I know nothing of the contents of these, but suppose the contents were not unfriendly to the United States Government as I could not believe that any one would betray my comfidence so far as to impose upon my kindness and make me the bearer of any treasonable correspondence.
I claim to be free from any act of hostility or any intention to violate any law of the United States Government either here or at home, and defy proof of any act of mine to justify my present imprisonment. What property I have is principally in the North, and two letters of mine - one in the hands of Fisher & Co., of Boston, and one in the hands of Buckner, McCammon & Co., of Philadelphia - can be produced wherein I requested them not to send me any money as I preferred its remaining where it was. I also proposed to Mr. Buckner, of the firm of Buckner, McCammon & Co., of Philadelphia, to start one of his sons in business with me and I would on my return home make my arrangements and move my family to Philadelphia. This proposition of mine was taken into consideration by Mr. Buckner. You can easily ascertain these proofs as they should have some bearing on my case.
I did receive some money for myself (which was taken from me) to pay off some debts in the event of my making arrangements to move my family North. Some portions of the moneys I had in my possession were drafts on Richmond merchants for collection there. I also had business on my return with Cincinnaty and Louisville tobacco houses.
I believe, sir, I have given you the whole truth in relation to my business North and feel confident if you would look into my case that your sense of justice and right would urge it upon you to procure my release. You are not only depriving me of my liberty but are causing a great deal of unhappiness to my wife and children. I have no relations to look after and befriend them.
FORT LAFAYETTE, September 17, 1861.
Honorable SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.
DEAR SIR: I understand I was arrested and imprisoned in this fortress on the charge of collecting money to carry South. If this is the only charge why cannot my liberty be restored, as I have given up the money? It is true I cannot afford to lose this money, but my business is fast going to ruin with no one to look after my interests. I have fifty hired hands with no one to look after and take care of them, to say nothing of my own family who are left in an unprotected situation. In collecting this money I was innocent of any intention to break the laws, as President Lincoln's proclamation was not promulgated till after I had