treason. The penitentiaries will be far more effectual than the gallows. Prosecute your best cases - not the weak and doubtful. It will not do for us to be habitually beaten. with these few hints I trust the matter to your own good judgment.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE CUMBERLAND,
Murfreesborough, January 19, 1863.
General JOSEPH E. JOHNSTON, C. S. Army.
GENERAL: I addressed you a letter yesterday in reference to abuses and outrages of flags of truce and the consequent suspension of official intercourse with General Bragg until reparation should be made for a very great outrage by the return of troops captured.
Sincerely desirous of conduction was according to the laws of humanity and civilization and not doubting that my feelings are responded to by yourself, who I have known through mutual friends and admirers in your earlier days, I am induced to address you at some length on two or three other matters of interest to humanity, premising that I have never practiced abuses nor allowed them to be practiced under my command.
1. The cartel requires that the prisoners captured by either party shall be delivered at Aiken's Landing or Vicksburg, or at such other points as may be agreed upon by the commanding generals of opposing armies. General Bragg in violation of this and without any previous notice to me on the subject marched the Hartsville prisoners, robbed of their overcoats and without rations, from Murfreesborough to our lines, they arriving at night in order to force the acceptance of them, thereby cheating us of what is justly due by the provisions of the cartel.
2. The Confederate cavalry are in the constant habit of disembarrassing themselves of the prisoners which they capture by paroling and releasing them whenever they find them, thereby forcing us to accept a delivery at any point which suits their convenience and after a delivery made in violation of the cartel to avoid recapture, in this way attempting to gain credit for prisoners which they probably might not be able to hold and certainly have not properly thus violating the agreement they forfeit their rights to the benefit of the capture; were it otherwise they would be permitted to claim the benefit of their own improper action.
3. No lists of these prisoners are ever furnished us. As I shall conformity thereto from the Confederate authorities no such persons can be regarded as prisoners of war, nor will credit be claimed or given for them in exchange, but when prisoners are lawfully taken, assembled, listed and paroled I shall be ready to select a convenient point at which to receive those you capture and deliver to you those whom we capture.
I have also to call your attention to the fact that at the recent battle at Murfreesborough our surgeons who fell temporarily into your hands were in several or all instances robbed of their horses and other private property and that some of them were carried off.
I also regret to state that the bodies of our wounded offices and soldiers were found stripped of their clothing - even the body of General Sill was robbed of its uniform.
The acts of injustice to our surgeons and inhumanity to the dead I am sure you must condemn and in future will be able to prevent. I regret to inform you also that the officers of the regular brigade report