I and other persons similarly situated were treated during the term of our imprisonment.
I left New York on the 24the of October in command of the steamer Osceola, a transport belonging to the Sherman expedition. The steamer foundered in the gale of November 2. With the crew I landed in two boats at Georgetown. S. C. We were taken prisoners on landing by Captain Godbold, of the South Carolina troops. After remaining two days on North Island I was transfered to Charleston and my men to the Marion Court-House jail. While in the Charleston guard-house I had good quarters and could get anything that I ordered. The commanding officer was brutal in his treatment; the others were kind and gentlemanly. I was transfered to the jail about the 27th of November and put in a room three Federal officers. The others who belonged to our mess-Colonels Willcox, Woodruff, Neff, and Major Potter-were kept in their cells (the condemned) in the tower. Our fare consisted of meat (bone included) and three biscuits dayly; two ounces of coffee for five days and other small stores in proportion; the fuel was altogether insufficient to cook provisions, being one small stick of yellow pine for two days for the whole mess. Those of us who were nto in the condemned cells had the run of the yard from 9 a. m. to 4 p. m. ; those of our number who were in the condemned cells had not the use of the halls, nor were the rest of us allowed to go to visit the lower. When the fire occurred in Charleston we were locked in our cells and remained unvisited and without food until 5 o'clock of the next day. We all suffered from the smoke and confinement. It was so light the night that nothwithstanding the smoke I could read fine print. In cells next to ours were confined five murderes (condemned) who had the same privileges as ourselves, liberty of the yard, &c. They were offered their liberty if they would join the Southern army but they refused. Our treatment was severe, and when we were ordered to be transferred to Columbia we were told to expect still worse fare and greater privations. But in this we were happily disappointed.
We reached Columbia on the 1st of January and at once marched to the jail of that town. It is an ordinary brick building, three stories in height and twenty by forty feet. The outer windows are well barred and secured. The yard in the rear, surronded by a fence twenty feet high, is twenty by fifty feet. Confined in this building were, including myself, 310 Northern citizens. Thirty-two of our number, ranking as officers, had the lower floor and occupied its six rooms; the remaining 278 of our number occupied the other two stories, less two small rooms devoted to other purposes. Extreme ventilation was necessary for comfort. Our rations of meat and bread were double what they had been at Charleston, but we had no coffee or vegetables. Our treatment was good and the officers were kind and gentlemanly. While there $300 were sent me from New Orleans by a friend and $300 from New York.
Of these sums I was allowed to receive $100.
Among our prisoners was Captain Nichols, of the brig E. K. Eaton, who was taken prisoner by the privatter Sallie which it is well known had no commision. Captain Nichols has been very badly treated, being kept on low rations, being furnished with bread alone, which he was expected to trade off for bull beef. He intrused his sextant with an officer named McDowell, who was at times in charge of the jail, which he was so sell. He did so and never returned the proceeds to Captain Nichols. The same dishonest practice was exercised upon Colonel Corcoran in regard to a watch which he wished to dispose of for the benefit of himself and hi fellow-prisoners. Lieutenant Demp-