FORT WARREN, MASS., Monday, December 2, 1861.
Honorable W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washingto, D. C:
I know not, my dear sir, whether a letter from a political prisoner at Fort Warren will ever reach your individual eyes no matter what the cause of complaint may be. The critical condition of my afflicted wife and the wreck of my financial affairs, however, compel me to write this letter whether you read it or not. If I were alone in the world with no suffering wife and helpless children depending upon me I should not trouble you with this letter, but I owe more to them than to myself and worthy of those in whose cause I write truth and candor shall mark my words
After midnight the 18th of September last Mrsshl Sneed with his posse came to my residence in Louisville, Ky., and arrested me under a writ issued by a justice of the peace of said city upon the oat of Sneed himself, directing hm to take me before the nearest judge having jurisdiction to try me for treason against the Untied States. Judge Catron, of the Supreme Court, was then in Louisville, but instead of my being taken before hmin conformity with thearrest I was hurried into Indian, thence to Fort Lafayette and finally to this place, where I now am. A writ of habveas corpus was issued by Judge Ctronin my behalf while Iwas in Indiana, but it was diregarded by the marshal and I was hurried on to the destiantionalready named. Marshal Sneed took me from my residence in summer clothes and without a cent of money, and in this conditin I was conveyed to New York, without a change of linen and without clothes warm enough to protect me against the cold days and nights that came upon us. My suffering was intense, but it could easily have been prevented by the marshal allowing me to take from home the necessary clothes or money to buy them.
If it was the intention to deal with me as other political prisoners have been delt with why the farce of a wre ordering me before the nearest judge for trial! When I arrived at Fort Lafayette September 25 I was compelled to sleep upon a bag of straw half a foot shourter than myself without a pillow or blanket until Icould secure endurable bedding from friends in New York. The food given me there was raw pork, tough beef ad bread (the bread was good) served upon a board table which the dirty cook swept with the same broom with which he brushed the floor. I had to endure this fare or pay $1 per day for sitting at the table of an officer of the garrioson. I preferred feeding uponthe miserable fare already named to contributing to the gain of the officer who I believed made ahandsome profit fromhis table, and had horrid food at the U. S . table for the purpose of driving prisoners to his. l But had it not been for some articles of food gotten from New York through friends there and at my own expense I could not have stood the fare at Fort Lafayette.
When I left Fort Lafayette I was crowded with some 800 other unfortuantes upon a boat utterly incapable of carrying so many persons. The same dirty cook who deserated the kitchen at Fort Lafayette fed me while on this boat upon hard crackers and raw pork delat out from preparation for the prisoners, and had it not been for the bankets brought with me I shouldhave been compelled to sleep upon the nakeed floor like many other prisoners who had not purchazsed their own bedding. But things are betterherenow and Ihaveno cause to complain of the officers or thefare, so marvelous is the improvement upon Fort Lafayette. Nor do I mean to blace Colonel Dimick nor any one here