in the novel language of the day a "political prisoner" or a "prisoner of state. " Until recently I have been held subject to the order of the Secretary of State but I now understand that I am specially in charge of the War Department. You therefore are responsible for my further detention. Under these circumstances it is proper I should place upon record in your office a statement of the wrongs done me and a demand for an instant and unconditional release.
On the night of the 12th of September, 1861, between 12 and 1 o'clock, I was made prisoner in my own house in Baltimore by a band of armed men, who although they showed no warrant or authority for their proceeding professed and I have no doubt truly to be acting under the orders of Mr. Seward, the Secretary of State. My house was searched from garret to cellar, my private papers ransacked and most of them as far as I can learn were carried off. I was kept for an hour or more a prisoner in my own parlor; armed men were stationed throughout my house and even at the door of my children's chamber while this search was proceeding. I will not comment further upon the indignities there put upon me. I was finally carrid off to Fort McHenry, leaving my house in possession of the mayrmidons who had invaded it and who refused to allow me to send for my wife's father or brother who were in the immediate neighborhood and to whom alone my family at such a moment could look for protection. I was detained at Fort McHenry during the following day and then transferred to Fortress Monroe. At this latter post I was confined a close prisoner with fourteen other gentleman for over ten days, none of us having been suffered to leave for an instant the two casemates which were there assigned us. So rigid was our imprisonment that the very windows and doors through which we could look out on the parade ground were closed and padlocked. I was then carried with my companions to Fort Lafayette. At this latter post no per had been made for our reception and no decent accommodations were at any time provided. I slept in the dark, cold gun battery in which I was quarterred upon a bag of straw until I procured bedding from New York, and during my whole stay I was compelled to pay for my meals as I could not have eaten the wretched rations offered me by the commanding officer. On the 1st of November last I was brought to this place on an overcrowded and filthy steamer which was insufficiently supplied even with the miserable pork and bread provided for our subsistence. But for the fact that I had brought my bedding with me I should have been forced like many of my companions to sleep for more than two weeks after my arrival here upon the floor and without a single blanket to cover me.
Such is a brief statement of the treatment to which I have been subjected. From the moment of my arrest down to this hour no charge of any short has been preferred against me and none can be alleged or established, for I have violated no law whatever, State or Federal. I was as you may perhaps be aware one of the editors of The Daily Exchange, a morning journal published in Baltimore. In that paper I had expressed my political opinions without reserve. I had a year ago advocated the adoption of some compromise by Congress which should stay then threatened rupture between the North and South. I had subsequently deprecated any attempt to coerce the South on the ground that it would only render the separation of the two sections inevitable and final. I asserted that war would leave the country in a worse condition than it found it, and it as it would moreover entail upon us an