All communications heretofore received from officers of the Southern Army have been courteous and kind in spirit and have been replied to in the same tone. I regret the necessity for any other class of correspondence.
On my part I shall carry on this war humanely, and do what I conceive to be my duty regardless of threats and most certainly without making any.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
U. S. GRANT,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF TENNESSEE, Murfreesborough, Tenn., December 15, 1862.
Major General W. S. ROSECRANS,
Commanding U. S. Forces, Nashville, Tenn.
GENERAL: Your communication in reference to an alleged error in the number of prisoners as compared with the lists furnished has been received.
I have the honor to inclose you copy* of a receipt given by your office who conducted the transfer. By it you will perceive that he attested the correctness of the number and certified accordingly. If any were permitted to escape their being turned over to him I am certainly not responsible for the loss.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
SAINT PAUL, December 15, 1862.
The PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:
Your order of the 6th instant for the execution of thirty-nine Indians just received by special messenger. They are imprisoned at Mankato, ninety miles distant, and the time fixed (19th) is too short for preparations for concentrating the troops necessary to protect the other Indians and preserve the peace. The excitement prevails in all sections of the State, and secret combinations exist embracing thousands of citizens pledged to execute all the Indians. Matters must be managed with great discretion and as much secrecy as possible to prevent a fearful collision between the U. S. forces and the citizens. I respectfully ask for authority to postpone execution one week from the 19th instant if I deem [it] necessary. Please reply at once. Your directions of 9th relative to Chakaydon received to-day by mail and will be obeyed.
H. H. SIBLEY,
OFFICE COMMISSARY-GENERAL OF PRISONERS, Washington, D. C., December 15, 1862.
Surg. L. A. EDWARDS,
U. S. Army General Hospital, Portsmouth Grove, R. I.
SIR: The paroled troops received at the general hospital, Portsmouth Grove, have been exchanged, and those fit for duty will be immediately ordered to join their respective regiments.