there would be danger of the capture of prisoners at Andersonville, and if the exchange is renewed there would be difficulty in transporting them. It would be well to wait for further intelligence unless the danger of being able hereafter to remove the prisoners or to feed them where they are is imminent.
JANUARY 20, 1865.
Inform General Winder of the President's indorsement and instruct to exercise his discretion, applying, if circumstances materially alter and he feels at a loss, for further instructions. I incline to think it would be well if the prisoners could be distributed and not all kept at any one place.
J. A. S.
HEADQUARTERS PRISONS EAST OF THE MISSISSIPPI,
Columbia, S. C., December 31, 1864.
General S. COOPER, Adjutant-General:
GENERAL: There is one suggestion I would like to make, but as it might be misunderstood by some I will not embody it in my official communication, but give it in this semi-official form and present it for your consideration. If it has any merit and is found to be worthy of consideration you can then, if you think proper, present it attached to my official letter.
To me it appears, and it so appears to General Beauregard, that there is no place that can be considered as safe from the operations of the enemy. This being the case, the question arises whether it would not be better to parole at least the officers and such enlisted men whose term of service has expired. By this means we could get rid of a great number. I think the officers, perhaps, might be sent over the lines in the direction of the Potomac. If the enlisted men could not be sent in this way then send them to East Tennessee. I believe the rules of war authorize the party holding prisoners of war to parole them whenever they think proper to do so, provided the prisoner will accept the parole. I offer this suggestion for what it is worth. My sources of information are so limited that I may not clearly comprehend the condition of affairs. If you do not think well of the proposition please destroy this letter.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
JNO H. WINDER, Brigadier-General.
ADJT. AND INSP. GENERAL'S OFFICE,
Richmond, April 14, 1864. -
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VI. The following is substituted for paragraph V, General Orders, Numbers 35, current series, which is hereby revoked. Officer s of the Conscription Bureau will send to general commanding the army or department in which the commands captured last served such officers and men belonging to them as have themselves escaped capture. The general commanding will assign them temporarily to depleted organizations, or such other duty as he may direct.
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S. COOPER, Adjutant and Inspector General.
*Inadvertently omitted from proper place in chronological order.