OFFICE COMMISSARY-GENERAL OF PRISONERS,
Washington, D. C., December 4, 1862.
Major PETER ZINN,
Commanding Camp Chase, Columbus, Ohio.
MAJOR: Your letter of the 28th has been received. Deserters from the rebel army cannot be considered as prisoners of war; but as spies may come in under that garb or it may be assumed as a ground for release, great caution must be observed that no imposition is practiced. You will refer to this office all cases where this claim is set up, with all the circumstances which are given to stain them in order that a decision may be made. All soldiers taken in arms whether recruits or conscripts are prisoners of war, and if they desire not to be exchanged but to be released on bond a special report should be made in each case with a recommendation for or against. Make a special report in all cases where prisoners have entered the rebel service in violation of their oath. Parole bonds do not seem to come within the meaning of the law requiring stamps and I presume no such stamp will be necessary.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Colonel Third Infantry, Commissary-General of Prisoners.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF VIRGINIA,
Fort Monroe, December 4, 1862.
Colonel W. HOFFMAN, Commissary-General of Prisoners.
COLONEL: I inclose to you to-day various papers with indorsements. Some of them are old references to me by General Thomas, but they can now be acted on by you. I must have the list of General Rosecrans' paroled prisoners before meeting with Mr. Ould. It will be worth the while if not otherwise speedily obtained to send a special agent for them. Have the Confederate prisoners, members of irregular organizations, been released and sent to Vicksburg?
Yours, very respectfully,
WM. H. LUDLOW,
Lieutenant-Colonel and Agent for Exchange of Prisoners.
ON BOARD TRANSPORT METROPOLITAN,
Off Vicksburg, Miss., December 4, 1862.
Major N. G. WATTS, C. S. Army,
Agent for Exchange of Prisoners:
In reply to your communication of the 3rd instant I beg leave to state that I have no personal knowledge of or participation in the detention from prisoners of war of any money or other property on the part of my Government except such as is authorized by the usages of war, but that the statement of any specific cases of a different nature which you may be pleased to make together with your note will be by me laid before the proper authorities for examination.
With great respect, I remain, your obedient servant,
W. W. BICKFORD,
Captain, U. S. Army, and Agent for Exchange of Prisoners.