War of the Rebellion: Serial 116 Page 0034 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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Lynde, Seventh Infantry, in the most cowardly and disgraceful manner gave up his command consisting of the companies of regular troops to less than 400 of the enemy. I suppose you must have seen in the papers an account of this. I can describe the whole affair to you now; I have been forced to talk so much about it that I am perfectly disgusted with everything connected with the whole affair. In all the whole affair I have come out all right. As commander of a squadron of rifles I have gained a reputation among our own officers. The affair at Mesilla which was the first thing we were engaged in was my first experience of civilized warfare. Three men were killed dead and about six wounded in their first volley. Our officer was wounded, and the command of the squadron devolved on me. I was picked out to be shot but they did not hit me. They killed a horse just behind me. I will be at Leavenworth by the middle of October. I don't know what will be done with us. If you have any influence at Washington try and have me exchanged. I am anxious to be free and redeem myself from the disgrace thrown on us all by that infernal coward Lynde.

Your affectionate son,


FORT COLUMBUS, September 4, 1861.


GENERAL: I have received the whole of the prisoners of war upon this island. The officers are quartered in Fort Columbus and the men at the Castle. Will I be justified in allowing the officers the liberty of the island upon their parole? What shall be the tenor of their confinement? I request an early answer.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Colonel Fifty Infantry, Commanding.


Respectfully referred to the General-in-Chief. The Secretary of War is of opinion that the prisoners, officers, at Fort Columbus might have the privilege of taking exercise on Governor's Island during the day or part of the day on giving their word of honor not to attempt to escape.




Fort Monroe, Va., September 4, 1861.

Brigadier General BENJAMIN HUGER,

Commanding Forces, Norfolk.

GENERAL: I received your communication of the 3d* instant by a flag of truce and acknowledged it, but the vessle which brought it left here before my letter reached her. The twenty-five prisoners and a British subject, who came not prisoner with the flag, were received and forwarded to the interior. To-day I send by a flag of truce to your courtesy the Right Reverend Catholic Bishop Verot, of Georgia, accompanied by his priest and deacon and three children and three ladies.

I am, with respectful consideration, your obedient servant,




* Not found.