War of the Rebellion: Serial 118 Page 0479 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. -UNION.

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you ask for. Will you franklin inform me if it be the intention of your authorities to put in force the offensive portion of the proclamation and message so often alluded to when the fortunes of war may place the greater number of our officers in your hands? Your officers are now in Fort Delaware ready for delivery and your reply will determine whether they are to come for exchange or to be returned to the West.

Please be clear, frank and explicit in your reply. Captain Mulford is instructed to bring it to me.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Lieutenant-Colonel and Agent for Exchange of Prisoners.

OLD CAPITOL PRISON, Washington, April 13, 1863.

Colonel W. HOFFMAN, Commissary-General of Prisoners.

SIR: Accompanying this note I send you rolls* of citizen prisoners in confinement at this portion. The charges are in a great measure taken from the commitments. My experience is (satisfactory to myself) that not much reliance can be placed thereon. I am but the custodian of the prisoners and am unable to furnish you with the authority for the arrest. My duties are to receive the prisoner when committed by proper authority and hold him until released by proper authority. There may be many who for special reasons should not be exchanged. I have on previous occasions made such selections. There are no charges on file other than the commitment at this prison. All other information is obtained by individual examination. My clerical assistance will not warrant me in saying such selections (exchanges) can be made in less than three days to prepare the rolls and at least five hours to make the necessary preparations previous to a release for exchange when the number of state prisoners is equal to the present, 201. Hoping this will be satisfactory,

I remain, your obedient servant,


Superintendent Old Capitol Prison.

WASHINGTON, D. C., April 13, 1863.

Brigadier General L. THOMAS, Adjutant-General U. S. Army.

GENERAL: It would appear from the recently published report of the Congressional Committee on the Conduct of the War that the immediate cause of my arrest and imprisonment on the 8th of February, 1862, was a document submitted to the honorable the Secretary of War by Major General George B. McClellan, then General-in-Chief of the Army, by him described as "the written result of the examination of a Leesburg refugee. " I have made application to Major-General McClellan for a copy of that document and for the name of the refugee, but have been informed in writing that he did not recollect the name of the refugee, and that the last time he saw the document was just previous to my arrest in the War Office. I respectfully request as a matter of justice to myself that I may be furnished from the War Department with a copy of the statement of this refugee, which seems to have produced such important impressions on the mind of Major-General McClellan.

Very respectfully, I am, general, your most obedient servant,




* Omitted.