ADJUTANT AND INSPECTOR-GENERAL'S OFFICE,
Richmond, October 13, 1862.
Brigadier General N. B. FORREST,
Commanding, Murfreesborough, Tenn.
GENERAL: At the request of Major General Samuel Jones, commanding, by telegraph, I have the honor of forwarding you with this a copy of the cartel* for the exchange of prisoners.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JASPER S. WHITING,
Major and Assistant Adjutant-General.
CASTLE THUNDER, October 13, 1862.
My Honorable PRESIDENT:
I say my, for I own no other; will no other own. I come to you, a poor weak woman whose future looks, oh, so cheerless. I come to you, the relict of him who has paid the penalty of his wrongdoing, if wrong he did, of which I know nothing. I come to you begging. I wish to go home. It was hinted an exchange. Oh, sir, exchange me, a Southern born, a South-adoring woman. No, no; rather let me remain here in my people's prison and die than exchange me for one of my own countrywomen. They say I might harm some one. Does a mother harm her child, a child her mother? The South is my mother. I will not harm her. Her glory is my pride. I look to her like a bleeding bird for succor. I have suffered. Oh, you can feel for the suffering; let me go home where I may seek some spot, and unnoticed pass the remainder of my dreary days. I will pray for you; do you no harm. There is nothing so ingenuous as fear but I fear nothing. I am protected here and my Holy Mother knows my heart, but I have ties in Maryland-interests there. Please let me go home.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
MRS. T. WEBSTER.
Secretary of War for inquiry and advice.
OCTOBER 17, 1862.
Referred to General Winder for inquiry and report.
G. W. RANDOLPH,
Secretary of War.
Respectfully returned to the Secretary of War with the report that it was decided by the Secretary some time since to release Mrs. Webster and send her home, but the Secretary having been told that Mrs. Webster would compromise many friends in Maryland, the Secretary directed she should be retained until further orders.
JNO H. WINDER,
Brigadier-General of Volunteers.
*Omitted here; see p. 266.