headquarters to a point more in advance than Mobile, the place agreed upon by General Grant and myself.
In accordance with the wish expressed I have selected Jackson, Miss., and to make it permanent, require your sanction.
My military family will consist of Captain J. R. Curell, assistant agent; Major C. W. Gassett, assistant quartermaster; Major John R. Hicks, surgeon; Charles E. Smidy and Jack Cassary, Jr., secretaries.
I call your attention to the object of my former letter. Still anxious to carry out the views therein expressed, I should like to prove to you the humanity and general good of personal exchanges.
Should you agree with me in these views, for our prisoners in your hands captured in this department I will give you men of equal rank captured from you, thus preventing unnecessary suffering on the part of either, and restoring men to duty in their respective commands. I have now about 250 officers and men at convenient camps to carry out this object. This matter could be much better explained in a personal interview, time and place left with you to appoint.
I am desirous to see Mr. Porterfield and Mr. Rand on business disconnected from my department, and in no way connected with my Government, purely personal to them. I hand inclosed a letter from the Hon. Walker Brooke upon the subject of the recent visit of his wife to Vicksburg, tendering his thanks for your kind treatment, &c.
I am, general, most respectfully, yours,
N. G. WATTS,
Lieutenant-Colonel and Agent, C. S. Army.
[Inclosure No. 2.]
HEADQUARTERS SEVENTEENTH ARMY CORPS, Vicksburg, Miss., December 21, 1863.
Lieutenant Colonel N. G. WATTS, Agent for Exchange of Prisoners:
COLONEL: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 16th instant, in relation to the exchange of prisoners, &c., and to inform you that I have no authority to enter into any arrangements or making any exchange. The matter has been referred by me to my Government in relation to some prisoners in the hands of Lieutenant General E. Kirby Smith, Trans-Mississippi Department, and I am daily expecting an answer which will cover the whole case. As soon as the decision arrives I will communicate the result to you by flag of truce.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAS. B. McPHERESON,
HEADQUARTERS MILITARY PRISON, Camp Morton, Indianapolis, Ind., December 22, 1863.
Colonel WILLIAM HOFFMAN,
Commissary-General of Prisoners, Washington, D. C.:
COLONEL: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 17th instant, inclosing copies of your circular of regulations governing the issues of clothing to prisoners in hospitals, &c. I beg leave to state that the telegram from Colonel Ekin was sent without my knowledge, and that we keep constantly on hand shirts,