After returning to the city I visited the jail, where there are about 700 prisoners of war. They occupy one-half the building, which is light and airy and well ventilated, and the prisoners are very comfortable without being crowded. The police is excellent. They are furnished with the fare of the prison, which is beef or bean soup, bread, coffee. Among these prisoners there are about seventy-five cases of diarrhea who require only a change of diet. A few of these cases who need more special care are provided for in a room in the jail, where they are attended by their fellow-prisoners.
Offers of various articles of food suitable for the sick have been tendered by the Ladies' Association of Baltimore, and I directed that such articles as were approved by the surgeon in charge should be received and used under his supervision and control. I directed also that when any of these prisoners became so ill as to require more careful treatment than could be given to them at the prison the fact should be reported to the medical director in order that the patient might be removed to a hospital.
To insure cleanliness among these prisoners I directed that they might be permitted to receive from the contributions that were offered a sufficient supply of underclothing-shirts, drawers, and socks-to be distributed by an officer designated by the provost-marshal to such men as were in actual want.
I then visited the only other hospital containing rebel prisoners and there was but one there. He was in the last stage of typhoid fever and it was not expected he would live through the day. Attendants were with him and he was receiving all the care which his case demanded.
Between the 13th and 19th of July about 900 (892) sick and wounded rebel prisoners were received in Baltimore and transferred to the hospital on Davis Island, N. Y., and 875 were received and transferred to the hospital at Chester, Pa. In almost every instance these men arrived in Baltimore at night, and it could not be otherwise than that there must be some cases of exposure and suffering, though as far as possible every preparation was made in anticipation of their arrival, and the same thing necessarily occurred with our own sick and wounded arriving from Gettysburg.
A detained report of the whole matter, of the reception and disposal of the sick and wounded, will be made to the Surgeon-General immediately by Medical Inspector W. H. Mussey.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Colonel Third Infantry and Commissary-General of Prisoners.
OFFICE COMMISSARY-GENERAL OF PRISONERS,
Washington, D. C., July 23, 1863.
Brigadier General O. B. WILLCOX, Commanding, Indianapolis, Ind.:
GENERAL: I have received a telegram from His Excellency Governor Morton, in which he informs me that the 800 exchanged men of Streight's brigade, at Camp Morton, are becoming demoralized for want of officers, and if their services are not required to guard prisoners it would be well to order them for duty elsewhere. On the 9th of June General Rosecrans asked for the men of Streight's brigade, and General Burnside was directed to send him all who could be spared. When these men were exchanged there were no other paroled men so classified that they could be exchanged, the rolls being made up of