The propositions I made and aaabout which I informed the Department concerning the release of officers for seamen are not it seems acceptable.
The idea suggested in the twelfth paragraph of General Huger's letter that seamen captured on board unarmed vessels should be regarded as non-combatants and therefore should not be held as prisoners but on the contrary released at once strikes me as being just and humane and in full accord with the present demands of civilization.
It is certainly true that as the states a number of our seamen have been released, and not [to] be outdone in generosity might we not act likewise in regard to all those similarly situated belonging to the enemy?
If there be no objection on the part of the Department I will agree to receive Captain Shillinglaw for Mr. Dalton, and hereafter as mentioned by General Huger some other captain in place of Mr. Butt. Captain Shillinglaw I believe was sorely wounded at Bull Run and his health I am told is delicate. He is now on parole and passed here on his way north a few days ago.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
L. M. GOLDSBOROUGH,
Flag-Officer North Atlantic Blockading Squadron.
The suggestion that seamen taken on merchant vessels for running the blockade, &c., should be released and not treated as prisoners of war is I believe the general policy.
HDQRS. OF THE ARMY, ADJUTANT-GENERAL'S OFFICE,
Washington, January 10, 1862.
Colonel J. DIMICK, U. S. Army,
Commanding Fort Warren, Boston, Mass.
SIR: The following exchanges of prisoners having been proposed by General Huger are with the concurrence of the Navy Department assented to and the General-in-Chief directs that you release the prisoners named who are under your charge, sending them in the usual manner to General Wool at Fort Monroe to be forwarded to Norfolk, Va.: For lieutenatn Twentieth Indiana Regiment [Isaac W. Hart], already released on parole, Lieutenant G. W. Grimes, Seventh [Seventeenth] North Carolina Volunteers; for Captain Shillinglaw, Seventy-ninth New York, already released, Lieutenant Dalton, late U. S. Navy; for Captain Manson, Seventy-ninth New York, Captain Tansill, late U. S. Marine Corps; for Captain William Dickinson, Third U. S. Infantry, already released, Lieutenant J. R. F. Tattnall, late U. S. Marine Corps.
I am, sir, &c.,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF VIRGINIA,
Fort Monroe, January 10, 1862.
Major General BENJAMIN HUGER, Commanding at Norfolk.
GENERAL: In reply to your letter of the 2nd instant relating to Mr. Gallagher* I would remark that it is my intention to either release him
* No letter found "relating to Mr. Gallagher," but see Huger to Wool, January 2, p. 176.