War of the Rebellion: Serial 116 Page 0659 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. -UNION.

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The general commanding desires to comply with so many of your requests as are permitted by the usages of war among civilized nations.

By order of Brigadier-General Finegan, commanding:

W. CALL,

Capatain and Assistant Adjutant-General.

WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, June 7, 1862.

Governor JOHNSON, Nashville, Tenn.:

The President has received your two dispatches of the 5th instant. He approves your proceeding of reprisal against the secessionists. In regard to the release of the rebel prisoners he holds the question as to the time when executive clemency shall be exercised under consideration. It has always been the design of the Government to leave the exercise of that clemency to your judgment and descretion whenever the period arrives that it can properly be exercised.

EDWIN M. STATON,

Secretary of War.

WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, June 7, 1862.

Colonel G. LOOMIS, Fort Columbus, N. Y.

SIR: Your communication of the 4th instant addressed to Adjutant-General Thomas in relation to release of prisoners at Fort Columbus was submitted by him to the Secretary of War, who directs me to state that these prisoners will probably all soon be released under a system of general exchange, and that none of them who exhibit satisfactory evidence that they will hereafter by loyal citizens and take the oath of allegiance will be forced wilthin the rebel lines against their will.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

P. H. WATSON,

Assistant Secretary of War.

WAR DEPARTMENT, ADJUTANT-GENERAL'S OFFICE,

Washington, June 7, 1862.

Major-General McDOWELL,

Commanding Department of the Rappahannock, Fredericksburg, Va.

SIR: The Secretary of War directs that the prisoners taken from Jackson's army be released on parole, man for man, for those released by Jackson of our forces.

I am, sir, &c.,

L. THOMAS,

Adjutant-General.

(Same to Major-General Wool, commanding Middle Department, Baltimore; Major General N. P. Banks, U. S. Volunteers, commanding Department of the Shenandoah, Winchester, Va. ; Brigadier-General Wadsworth, U. S. Volunteers, Military Governor District of Columbia.)