CHARLESTON, S. C., April 24, 1863.
Honorable W. D. SIMPSON, Richmond, Va.
DEAR SIR: Will you permit me to call to your view a case of very great hardship and oppression and respectfully to ask your aid? Mr. Miles has been laboring in the same cause and I am sure will zealously co operate with you. Captain Daniel B. Vincent, a seaman of great experience and one of our most worthy and respected citizens, was captured together with the vessels under his command by the enemy's fleet off Bull's Bayou June, 1862, while attempting to run the blockade. From that time until now he has been kept a close prisoner in Fort Lafayette, and as his friends are informed for a great portion of the time in solitary confinement. The officers and crew captured with him have long since been released but his gentleman is still kept a prisoner. No other cause can be given for this but that he is thoroughly acquainted with the harbors and rivers of this and the adjoining States and would therefore be avery useful man to the Confederacy. Surely the seaman and citizens are entitled to ask from the Confederate Government some of the protection afforded the soldier, particularly when the former are made prisoners in the effort to discharge a duty to the public. I would respectfully ask that this case be brought to the notice of the President in behalf of a citizen of South Carolina.
I am, sir, with great respect, your obedient servant,
WILMOT G. DE SAUSSURE.
RICHMOND, April 28, 1863.
General J. E. JOHNSTON, Tullahoma:
If Major R. A. Howard has been released on parole and is within our lines he will be declared specially exchanged and one officer of equal rank sent to the enemy's lines. If he is held in custody by the enemy he cannot be exchanged until an interview is had with the Federal agent, which will be in a few days.
Adjutant and Inspector General.
C. S. SENATE, April 28, 1863.
I inclose you statement of the Seventeenth Texas Regiment. It shows now under General Holmes in Arkansas 1 lieutenant-colonel, 1 major, 4 captains, 8 lieutenants 1 assistant quartermaster, 1 assistant commissary of subsistence and 350 privates. Of those captured at the Post of Arkansas there are now here only 180 privates and there are no officers. All the regiments and companies captured at the Post of Arkansas are in much the same condition. The whole of these exchanged prisoners are anxious to be sent back to Arkansas. They are conscripts and men of families, and there being no law to break up these regiments or to assign them to other regiments or to make of them new organizations I trust you will not allow them or their legal rights and the law of the land to be so treated and so disregarded. We must look to you of the enforcement of the law and for fair play.
Most truly, yours,
R. W. JOHNSON.