I would recommend that he be sent to Johnson's Island, where he can be placed on a footing with other prisoners of war on that island, and if the Government orders the rebel officers to be subjected to special treatment corresponding to that which the rebels extend to Union prisoners in Richmond prisons General Lee will be in a right position for sharing it.
E. A. HITCHCOCK,
Major General of Vols., Commissioner for Exchange of Prisoners.
LIBBY PRISON, November 8, 1863.
Colonel OULD, Commissioner of Exchange:
COLONEL: I have received a second consignment of blankets and clothing from my Government for our soldiers prisoners here.
When I distributed the last consignment I was not permitted to take any officers with me as assistants, consequently the labor was heavy and the work was not so satisfactorily accomplished.
I have reason to think that many things have not been accounted for.
I wish very much to take with me in distributing the clothing, &c., now on hand about six officers as assistants. Two of them captains and four lieutenants, all acquainted with the business, all, if wished, on their parole time.
I hope this may be accorded to me.
I wish to call your attention to the condition of the prisoners on Belle Isle.
Many of them, about one-half I am told, have no shelter, and have not sufficient food; have no soap, and, in short, are in a most wretched condition, suffering very much every way.
I entreat you to see that their condition is improved so far as it may being your power.
I am informed that there are considerable bills of expense on the goods receive for the prisoners and have been called on for payment.
I am at a loss to know why there should be charges in such a case.
The inclosed note* was handed to me at Belle Isle.
I hope you will consider favorably the case of the writer.
Brigadier-General, U. S. Army.
WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, November 9, 1863.
Major General E. A. HITCHCOCK, Commissioner of Exchange:
GENERAL: You will please report what measures you have taken to ascertain the treatment of United States prisoners by the rebels at Richmond, and you are directed to take measures for precisely similar treatment toward all the prisoners held by the United States, in respect to food, clothing, medical treatment, and other necessaries.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Secretary of War.