all who may be in any way connected with or following the army are especially charged and entreated to do whatever in them lies to bring this crime to its merited punishment.
By command of Major-General McDowell:
U. S. MARSHAL'S OFFICE, New York, May 17, 1862.
Honorable EDWIN M. STANTON,
Secretary of War, Washington, D. C.
SIR: Within the past few weeks several prisoners captured by U. S. cruisers on board vessels attempting to break the blocakde have been delivered into my custody and consigned by me to the care of Colonel Burke, commandant Fort Lafayette, which proceeding on my part you have been pleased in each instance to indorse with your approval.
I learn that among these prisoners there are many foreigners who owe no allegiance to this country, have no interest in remaining here when at liberty and have in many cases been deceived as to the true destination of the vessel on which they were captured. Their consuls having made frequent application at this office for their discharge, and considering that they are only an expense to the Government and would in most instances immediately leave the country never to return, I respectfully ask your authority to examine and release all prisoners of the class above described who are not subjects of the United States willing to give their parole of honor to hold no communication with the insurrectionary States and to commit no act hostile to the Government of the United States.
Soliciting the favor of your early reply, I have the honor to remain, sir, your most obedient servant,
U. S. Marshal.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF NORTH CAROLINA,
New Berne, May 17, 1862.
General TH. H. HOLMES,
Commanding Department of North Carolina, Goldsborough.
GENERAL: I was much gratified upon the receipt of your letter of the 15th instant, and will be glad to receive the U. S. prisoners now in North Carolina at Wilmington or at any point between Wilmington and the mouth of the Cape Fear River that you may designated. Or should your prefer it we will receive themat Washington, N. C. Upon the receipt of your answer to this I will have vessels in readiness to receive themat whichever point you name.
I shall to-morrow send a flag of truce with some citizens of this place who are desirous of leaving for the country, and I hope you will deem it advisable to allow the citizens of this place now within your lines to return to their homes if they desire to do so.
I have the honor to be, general, your obedient servant,
A. E. BURNSIDE,
Major-General, Commanding Department of North Carolina.