War of the Rebellion: Serial 115 Page 0679 SUSPECTED AND DISLOYAL PERSONS.

Search Civil War Official Records

South and by his temporary residence there. NOthing of this kind, however, unaccompanied by overt acts and no virulence of party feeling however insidious and dangerous should subject himto restraint at the hands of a just and liberal constitutional Government.

The other charges do not seem to be alluded to in these affidavits nor does the case find any evidence tending to sustain the fourth charge of the accusation. Reviewing the whole matter my opinion is that there is no sufficinet evidence accessible to the Government to warrant ordering Sargent to be put upon his trial for treason, conspiracy or any other offense, and that it does not appear that he is such an enemy to the Government as to demand his further detention as a prisoner of war. At the time his arrest awas first ordered the posture of public affairs was such that the proceeding summary as it was tended to strengthen the cause of the Government, and was approved by the great mass of our citiznes under the prevalent belief that the Administration was inpossession of some facts showing his complicity with treason. At that time hopes were cherished by a portion of our citizens that a political demonstration might be made at the polls which would paralyze the Administration in its efforts to subdue the rebellion and would commpel it to offer some ignoble and unjust concessions to the armed traitors. The loyalty of the people has disappointed all such hopes. The feeblee demonstration at the polls of hostility to the war policy of the Govenment showed the impracticability of this political diversionin favor of the rebels. Summary and severe measures seem to be no longer required and the Government may for the present safely rely upon the patriotims and devotion of the great mass of its citizens.

While the unhealthy political associations of Sargent and his Southern connections seem to justify the requirement from him as the condition of his release of a renewal of his oath of loyalis subjection for a period to such surveillance as may not be incompatible with his liberty his immediate release from imprisonment will be an act of clemency and justice likely to influence him favorably and to strengthen the Government in the respect and confidence of the people of Maine, and it may not be improper for me to pledge my own vigilance and that of the subaltern executive officers of the United States in this district that this act of clemency shall not be hereafter abused to the peril of the State.

I have the honor to be, with highest esteem, your obedient servant,

GEORGE F. TALBOT.

Attoreny of the United States for the District of Maine.

[Inclosure Numbers 1.]

WASHINGTON, October 22, 1861.

GEORGE F. TALBOT, Esq., U. S. District Attorney:

SIR: On my return from a visit to Maine I found on my table your letter of the 9th instant touching the case of Cyrus F. Sargent, now confined in Fort Lafayette. But for my absence it would have been answered before.

In answer to your inquiry as to my knowledge of the facts alleged in the information communicated, I have no authority but that which I gave at the time of submitting the facts in the paper which you have quoted. The allegations and the name of my informant were written by me on the same slip of paper and passed to Honorable Caleb B. Smith, Secretary of the Interior. I have not met Sargent for years, but in