War of the Rebellion: Serial 115 Page 1245 SUSPECTED AND DISLOYAL PERSONS.

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from the sheriff of said county that Hopkins and others residing in and about North Branch were according to common report openly avowed secessionists; that he stopped at the public house kept by Isaiah Butler (one of Hopkins' associates and co-conspirators) to whom he was introduced under an assumed name, and that he was subsequently introduced to Hopkins by Butler. On the following day Mr. Whiting had an interview with Mr. H. C. Sherwood, a resident of the neighborhood, who stated that Hopkins, Butler, Wattles and others had raised a pole for the purpose of hoisting a secession flag thereon, and on being warned by Sherwood and others that such action would result in the destruction of their property they replied that they would murder the whole of the damned abolitionists there were in the settlement if interfered with, and hurrahed for Jeff. Davis, cursed the damned Lincolnites, &c. Mr. Whiting also states that on the 14th of November Private Calvin Hills, of Company H, Kellogg's cavalry regiment, statnioned at Saint Louis (then returning home on a furlough), passed Butler's tavern, whereupon Hopkins and Butler ran out and gave three cheers for Jeff. Davis; and that on the evening of the same day Hopkins was present at a meeting at Butler's tavern on which occasion Butler made a speech on the right of secession and avowed himself an advocate of the doctrine. Mr. Whiting further states that in conversation with Hopkins in relation to the Government and about the war Hopkins said it was no Government at all, and many other like expressions, and denounced the war as unjust and tyrannical; and that many good and loyal citizens denounced Hopkins as an "open and avowed secessionist, which I think is true. " A letter signed in cipher, dated North Branch, October 5, 1861, and directed to a citizen of Detroit, fell into the hands of Mr. Howard, the postmaster at that place, and was subsequently delivered to W. H. Barse, special agent, by whom it was forwarded to the Secretary of State. The letter is in the handwriting of Hopkins, and he has since admitted that it was written by him. It was addressed to R. M. C., esq. (said to mean Robert McClelland), and professes to relate to a secret league formed for the purpose of overthrowing the Federand it is filled with treasonable sentiments. Its references to individuals, &c., are only by initials, and among those referred to as members of the league or active in its interest are C---s S---t and Pres'nt P---, said to mean ex-President Pierce and Colonel Charles Stuart, of the Eleventh Regiment Michigan Volunteers. It speaks of the secrecy and success with which their operations have been carried on, and says. * The prisoner in his statement made after his confinement in Fort Lafayette claims that the letter was only intended for a sell and that his expectation was that it would be sent to one of the treason-shrieking presses and would be apt to quiet their howls. Letters and communications found among the prisoner's papers afford umistakable evidence that he is a very bad man and justify incredulity at least in relation to any of his statements in his own behalf, and also warrant the belief that to a man so faithless to good morals and social order the transition would be easy to that of disloyalty to his Government.

Isaiah Butler, of North Branch, Lapeer County, Mich., was arrested at that place on or about the 21st day of November, 1861, and was taken to Fort Lafayette by order of the Secretary of State. Butler was


*Letter omitted here. See p. 1248.