War of the Rebellion: Serial 115 Page 1417 SUSPECTED AND DISLOYAL PERSONS.

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sent on to prove the guilt of most of them. I merely suggest that before a discharge be made of any of the prisoners that means be taken to prove their guilt. We have no one to come forward as prosecutor and prosecute. * * *

Most respectfully, your obedient servant,


Colonel Fourteenth Regiment Virginia Militia.

CONGRESS HALL, January 25, 1862.

Honorable J. P. BENJAMIN.

DEAR SIR: A case of much difficulty has recently arisen in Arkansas, and one I fear without remedy, but its importanc demands that I should confer with you upon it. Some seventy-five men have been taken up and brought before the Confederate camp at little Rock for treason. Before an investigation the judge and attorney believe a case can not be made out against them and they must be discharged, or on trial acquitted. While every one believes and feels and almost knowns they are guilty yet the overt act can not be made out or proved. To urn them back upon the country thus would encourage them and their friends and dispirit all our own true and loyal citizens. The judge of the court suggests they had better be turned over to the military authorities. There is no law for this that I know of, and there can be no concert of action between the civil and military authorities that I know of, and besides this the civil law still prevails and not the martial. On consultation with the Attorney-General he suggests the War Departmenta alone can act on this matter. I called to-day to see you in relation to it but found your office closed, and I concluded to write to you so that you might give the matter its full and careful consideration due the subject; and I hope the magnitude of the subject will justify me in thus troubling you for it is of no small moment to our people in Arkansas. I should be glad to hear from you in full at an early day.

Yours, very truly, &c.,


NAVY DEPARTMENT, Richmond, January 28, 1862.

Honorable J. P. BENJAMIN, Secretary of War.

SIR: I have the honor to inclose herewith a copy of the parole of Mr. W. H. Ward, late a lieutenant in U. S. Navy, who resigned, was arrested and imprisoned for five months. Mr. Ward will take charge of any letters or dispatches you may have to forward to General Huger on the subject, and perform any other duty which you may require of him upon the subject of his exchange.

I am, respectfully, your obedient servant,


Secretary of the Navy.


FORT WARREN, Boston Harbor, January 20, 1862.

I, W. H. Ward, a prisoner at Fort Warren, do pledge my word of honor that I will proceed without any unreasonable delay to Fort Monroe, Va., and thence by flag of truce to Norfolk, and that I will do no act hostile to the United States or convey any correspondence or infor-