War of the Rebellion: Serial 116 Page 0749 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. -CONFEDERATE.

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November 30, 1861.

General S. COOPER, Adjutant and Inspector General.

SIR: I send inclosed copy of a note* received last evening from General Wool's headquarters. I felt authorized to inform General Wool my Government would allow clothing, blankets, &c., necessary comforts for their prisoners to be sent to them. As to the luxuries of tea, coffee, &c., I am not prepared to answer and refer his letter to the Secretary of War for instructions.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,


Major-General, Commanding.


Reply to General Huger that he can communicate to General Wool that prisoners are supplied with good and substantial food, but no objection will be made to the United States supplying them with the articles suggested. this permission will not apply to the prisoners kept in cells as hostages for our privateers. Inclose the two letters within to be forwarded by the flag of truce.

WAR DEPARTMENT, richmond, December 3, 1861.


Commanding Department of Norfolk.

SIR: I have had the honor to receive your letter of the 30th ultimo, inclosing a copy of letter from Asst. Adjut. General William D. Whipple, Fortress Monroe, inquiring whether certain articles would be allowed to be furnished by the United States to the prisoners of war in Richmond. You are authorized to reply to the major-general commanding at Forterss Monroe that all our prisoners are regularly supplied with a sufficiency of good and substantial food but that no objection will be made to the request that the articles suggested may be forwarded to them from the United States under flag of truce and upon the conditions previously stipulated by you. this permission, however, will not apply to those who are held confined in cells as hostages for our privateers captured by the enemy. You are respectfully requested to forward the within letters+ by the first flag of truce.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,


Secretary of War.


Richmond, December 5, 1861.

Honorable J. P. BENJAMIN, Secretary of War.

SIR: I beg leave to submit for your consideration that the obligation imposed upon this department to provide for the sustenance of prisoners of war is embarrassing in its practical operations and produces in some instances a direct conflict with the Commissary Department to which that duty would seem to more properly belong. An example is presented in the fact that this department in providing supplies for


*Omitted here; Whipple to Huger, November 29, p. 149.

+Not found.