War of the Rebellion: Serial 116 Page 0222 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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General Halleck in this respect desires they should be on the same footing as our own sick, leaving the matter of permitting visits in the hands of the medical officer.

I remain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brigadier General of Vols., U. S. Army, Commanding Saint Louis District.

WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, January 30, 1862.

Brigadier General M. C. MEIGS, Quartermaster-General.

SIR: As the Government is about taking measures if possible to relieve the wants and promote the comforts of our soldiers who are held as prisoners of war at Richmond and elsewhere in the South and to that end have appointed Rev. Bishop Ames and Honorable Hamilton Fish, with authority to make requisition upon Major General John E. Wool at Fortress Monroe for such clothing, medicines and other articles as they may deem necessary, you will therefore at once take such measures as may be necessary to establish a depot of clothing at Fortress Monroe under the charge of the assistant quartermaster at that post and supply the same with 2,000 complete suits of soldiers' clothing, including that already forwarded for the supply of the Union prisoners in the South.

You will also furnish and deposit with the said clothing a sufficient supply of combs, brushes, soap and such other articles as may be deemed necessary to the personal cleanliness and health of the said prisoners by the said Bishop Ames and the said Honorable Hamilton Fish.

And you will instruct the assistant quartermaster at Fortress Monroe to hold the said clothing and other articles subject to the order of Major General John E. Wool, commanding that post, and deliver the same upon his order therefor as from time to time the said Bishop Ames and the said Honorable Hamilton Fish may make requisitions upon him.


Secretary of War.

WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, January 30, 1862.

The Rev. Bishop AMES and Honorable HAMILTON FISH.

GENTLEMEN: Persons who have been in the military service of the United States as officers and soldiers are now held as prisoners in the city of Richmond, Va., and in other places in the South; some of them are sick, some wounded, many in a state of destitution and all objects of public sympathy and deep solicitude to this Government. You have been appointed to the humane and Christian duty of visiting these prisoners in the places where they are confined and to reliities, supply their wants and provide for their comfort according to your discretion. You are also to make or procure a list of all the prisoners so held in captivity, designating their names, the time and place where captured, the service to which they belonged, their present state and condition, their wants and necessities and all other particulars that may be interesting and proper for their families to know or useful to be known by this Government for the purpose of effecting their exchange or release.

Your message being purely an errand of mercy this Government expects and desires that you should not seek, obtain or report information or have communication on any subject not immediately relating