War of the Rebellion: Serial 118 Page 0330 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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prisoners immediately upon their arrival. I omitted to mention that there is one company (B) of the Purnell Legion, numbering about eighty men all. About thirty-five of this number are permanently stationed at Camp Parole, from whom five men as picket guards are daily detached to ride about the country in the vicinity of the camp and the roads leading to it, arresting marauders and stragglers. The remainder of this company (B) are stationed at the town of Annapolis as a provost guard and they occupy as quarters a portion of the College Green Barracks. Yet it is obvious that one of the building would readily accommodate not only this guard but that portion of the general hospital guard which might remain at the barracks in case of the removal to Camp Parole of the main body.

I now desire to call your attention to the guards at Camp Parole. Commanding the detail of ninety men above mentioned as daily furnished are two officers, one acting as officer of the day at the camp and the other as officer of the guard. There are thirty infantry posts about the camp at which are nominally thirty sentinels, but great carelessness prevails among them while on post and their duty is very indifferently preformed and very often loyalty neglected. This is illustrated by the inmates of the camp constantly passing and repassing their posts in every direction for fuel to the forests and other purposes, and by the nuisances constantly committed everywhere outside the immediate camp limits by the prisoners in full view of the sentinels and without molestation by them. I invite your attention to accompanying papers* marked A, (2) (3) (4), from which it will be seen that if the orders given had been strictly enforced but little complaint could be justly made of the manner of performing the guard duty. But the guard is inefficient and not large enough to preform in a proper manner the duties required for even the present strength of the camp, which at times contains a far greater number of prisoners. An increase of the number of sentinels to at least fifty, with a permanent guard of at least 400 men stationed at the camp, properly officered and under efficient discipline, would the carrying out of the camp regulations even in a tolerable manner. To establish this I will refer to some of the daily practices at the camp by the prisoners-the constant habit of defecating all about the immediate vicinity; the constant passing of sentinel's posts whenever convenient; the stopping of the fuel wagons by the soldiers of one part of the camp when the fuel is designed for another part; the interference by soldiers with the delivery of the particular quantity of fuel designed for any company, regardless of the teamster of the cavalry patrol accompanying the team, they not infrequently tossing the back teamster in a blanket if he remonstrates; the destruction of wooden buildings by the soldiers for the purpose of using the boards whenever convenient; the seizing of the tents in camp which may be vacated by exchanged men leaving and doubling the canvas of their own by placing these tents over those occupied, and many other irregularities inconsistent with the first principles of order or discipline.

Discipline. - With regard to the general discipline of the came I have to inform you that it is extremely slack as the above fact will illustrate. There are no parades, except for morning and evening roll-calls. These are company parades and for the purpose of reporting absentees. It will be seen from the paper* marked B (1) that the whole camp is divided into six battalions, each embracing certain State's troops. One


* Not found.