I make this proposition, my dear sir, in that spirit which I believe would make more friends for our blessed Union than to keep individuals confined without an open charge or giving them a trial. Let all traitors be dealt with summarily.
Hoping the Government is strong enough to deal generously with humble individuals unless they stand charged openly with treason I submit this suggestion as helping to inspire that high prestige with our people which I so much desire to see in them.
THOS. E. HAMBLETON.
BALTIMORE, January 13, 1862.
Honorable WILLIAM H. SEWARD.
DEAR SIR: I have the pleasure of introducing to you Thomas E. Hambleton, esq., president of the Maryland Fire Insurance Company and one of the water commissioners of this city. He wishes to see you, as he informs me, on business. I have know Mr. Hambleton from an early period after I took command of this military department and have never had any ce sincerity of his loyalty to the Union and the Government of his county.
I am, very respectfully,
JOHN A. DIX.
OLD CAPITOL PRISON,
Washington, D. C., January 28, 1862.
General PORTER or Major E. J. ALLEN.
DEAR SIR: Having been a prisoner over four months I take the privilege of writing a few lines to you to solicit your sympathy, if not for myself for the sake of a distressed wife and nine children, one of which is a stranger to me it having been born since my imprisonment. If you are a father or husband and could see things in their true light I am sure you would give my case an impartial consideration and grant me a speedy release.
Located as my place was there are not twenty men in my county or the adjoining counties that would not have done the same as myself. Apart from that there are always some prejudiced persons ready to magnify things and make them as bad as possible which I have no doubt has been the case with me. I do not know who my accusers are nor do I know what the charges are, having never seen a list of the same. I have heard there were several. Some or the most of them are utterly false and I defy them to be proven. If I could have had trial I could have satisfied you of the same. There are portions of the charges I have denied.
There are many prominent State Rights men of my county and the adjoining counties who furnished men and means for the Southern cause, went to Virginia themselves, remained some time, came back, were arrested, sent to Fort Warren and other prisons; have since been released and are now at home. Others perhaps of more prominence came home, took the oath and are now at liberty. I cannot see that my case possibly could be worse than those referred to. One of them I understood kept a regular ferry and wagon for that purpose. He left the State; took, with him some of his negroes; left them South. He came home, was arrested, sent to Fort Warren, was released, and is now at home. All that I ask is that the same amnesty be granted me that has been granted others.