facts in behalf of our sick and disabled comrades: In this prison there is a large number of officers disabled from further military service, in consequence of wounds, amputations, and chronic diseases of all kinds, but most especially from chronic diarrhea. An early exchange of these men and their return home to their relatives and friends will not only relieve a vast amount of suffering, but preserve their lives, so valuable to their families. From the experience of the past few months we are warranted in asserting that the continuance of his class of men in prison will result in the death of many. Their only hope is in an early exchange. Doubtless the same state of things exists in all other prisons, both North and South. We would therefore most earnestly recommend, for the sake of humanity, that these men be selected as the first for exchange. We have thought proper to make this application in duplicate, one directed to yourself, the other to the Honorable Robert Ould, commissioner of exchange for the Confederate States. We sincerely hope that this application may receive immediate and favorable attention.
We are, respectfully, your obedient servant,
I. G. W. STEEDMAN, M. D.,
Colonel First Regiment Alabama Volunteers,
L. E. LOCKE, M. D.,
Captain, Fifty-third Alabama Cavalry.
J. F. SESSIONS, M. D.,
Captain Company K, Eighteenth Mississippi Regiment,
Physicians in Charge of Prison Hospital, Johnson's Island, Ohio.
Johnson's Island, Ohio, March 17, 1864.
Approved and respectfully forwarded.
Surgeon 128th Ohio Volunteer Infantry, in Charge.
OFFICE COMMISSARY-GENERAL OF PRISONERS,
Washington, D. C., March 24, 1864.
Respectfully submitted to the Secretary of War.
Colonel Third Infantry and Commissary-General of Prisoners.
WAR DEPARTMENT, March 29, 1864.
Respectfully referred to the commissioner for the exchange of prisoner for remark.
By order of the Secretary of War:
ED. R. S. CANBY,
Brigadier-General and Assistant Adjutant-General.
WASHINGTON, March 31, 1864.
I see no necessity for sending this communication to Mr. Ould, but the suggestion appears reasonable and I suggest that the class of persons described might be sent to General Butler with instructions to offer them for exchange under his existing orders, if he is in condition to act under them.
E. A. HITCHCOCK,
Major-General of Volunteers and Commissioner of Exchange.