War of the Rebellion: Serial 116 Page 0620 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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there who are interfering with Union men there. You will therefore arrest five of the principal secessionists and inhabitants of Pass Christian, including the mayor. [Take] then to Ship Island and give them and their friends distinctly to know why they are arrested, and if any of my soldiers or a Union man are disturbed or injured at Pass Christian these men will be hanged on complaint being made. If they understand this thoroughly and you execute your threat, as you must do if occasion calls, you will have no further difficulty at Pass Christian.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, yours,



Saint Louis, June 1, 1862.

Colonel J. C. KELTON,

Asst. Adjt. General, Dept. of the Mississippi, Corinth, Miss.

COLONEL: I have the honor to inclose for the information of the major-general commanding a copy of an order* I have deemed it necessary to issue in consequence of the manifestation of a general design on the part of the incorrigible class of rebels throughout the State to engage in guerrilla warfare during the summer. Several of these criminals have been caught and are now on trial. Could speedy punishment follow their conviction a very wholesome effect would no doubt be produced; but the long delay occasioned by the necessity of sending the proceedings to the major-general commanding the department for his approval will deprive the State of the beneficial effect of a few summary examples which I have no doubt would put an end to these disturbances of the peace. I have thought to remedy the evil by turning criminals over to the civil courts in accordance with the late order defining the duties of the provost-marshal-general. But these courts are even more slow in their administration of justice than military commissions. There is no serious objection to this tardiness in most cases that arise, they being of crimes committed long ago and under circumstances very different from the present-circumstances such as to render capital punishment perhaps neither just nor necessary, although technically in accordance with the laws of war. But in cases like the present of an attempt to incite anew insurrection in a part of the country where peace has been almost completely restored extreme and speedy punishment alone can produce the desired effect. I respectfully request that you lay the matter before the major-general commanding for such action if any as he shall deem necessary.

I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,




Dayton, Ohio, June 1, 1862.

Captain J. A. EKIN,

Assistant Quartermaster, Indianapolis, Ind.

CAPTAIN: After seeing you last evening I was induced to believe I would lose time by remaining till Monday and I hurried off, leaving two or three little matters unsettled which I should have attended to.

On reflection I have thought it would be best to adhere to my former decision to use the hospital fund to pay only for the smaller purchases for the hospital, leaving the larger ones to be covered by


* See General Orders, Numbers 18, p. 607.