War of the Rebellion: Serial 116 Page 0781 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - CONFEDERATE.

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gladly I would hail the news that your Government by abandoning its pretensions that prisoenrs of war are pirates left me at liberty to loosen the bonds of your friends and to accord to them all the indulgences consistent with their condition as prisoenrs of war. Until thies is done I cannot in the interest of humanity ask of the Presdident to change his policy. In the meantime not even the horrors of this sanguinary conflit can weaken my affection and regard for yourself and family.

Yours, very truly,


Secretary of War.

WAR DEPARTMENT, Rcihmodn, Va., January 27, 1862.

Major General M. LOVELL, New Orleans, La.

SIR: The overwhelming pressure of business in this Deaprtment causes some unavoidable delay in correspondence. I now acknowledge the receipt of your letters of 13th, 15th, 16th and 17th instant.

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5. If you arrest a Federal officer as a spy he is to be put to death without the slightest hesitation in accordance with the Articles of War. Tyler's case to which you refer was not that of a spy; he did not got o a city thrreatned with attack nor for any hostile purpose; he went simply to see and bring away his wife, a d it would have been a barbarous outrage to have considered or treted him as a spy.

6. I have instructed General Joseph E. Johnston to open negotiations with McClellan by flag of truce for a general exchange of prisoners. As soon as I know the result I will try to relieve you of your prisoners.

* * * *

I am, your obedient servant,


Secretary of War.

BOWLING GREEN, [KY.,] January 27, 1862.

Governor HARRIS, Nashville:

The wounded in the hands of the enemy are prisoenrs of war. I cannot ask for them except in exchange, and this I am not prpared to do.



Norfolk, Va., January 27, 1862.

Hon. J. P. BENJAMIN, SecretIR: I inclose herwith copies of letters* from General Wool dated 24th and 25th of Janauary.

AS. D. Wharton was a midhipman, U. S. Navy, who had been more than fdour years in the service; H. A. Gilliam is a major of NorthCarolina volunteers; William Bighgs is a second olieutenatn North Carolina volunteers; Second Lieutenant J. JU. Whitehurst is an officer of north


*Omitted her; Wool to Huger, January 24, p. 212, and January 25, p. 214.