War of the Rebellion: Serial 121 Page 0420 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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would be whelmed and the fence swept away. Although I felt confident that the ward would not be carried away, still, as it was obvious that the freshet was to be an extraordinary one, it would not do to imperil between 200 and 300 lives. Rafts were accordingly built to convey this number from the part of the camp isolated by water from the camp proper, and the removal was accomplished without any casualty. They were placed in six old barracks on the highest ground of the camp. These barracks are very old and nearly useless, having been kept standing through the winter only by means of props and braces outside. Their destructions will now be necessary, as it would not be safe again to occupy them as barracks. In consequence of the great reduction of the camp it will not be necessary to erect new ones in their places. The river continued to rise until the entire camp, except about an acre, was flooded. It even crossed the road and flooded the camp of the Nineteenth Veteran Reserve Corps on the opposite side. We were compelled to remove the sick of the camp to the Nineteenth Veteran Reserve Corps barracks. This was accomplished with great promptness; with no escape of prisoners, and, what is still more remarkable, with but slightly increased loss of life. I immediately took measures to rebuild the fence. It will be completed in a few days. About 2,700 feet were carried away. I shall sink the posts six feet and anchor them and build food gates across the lowest part. There was no loss of buildings and none of stores, except a very small quantity stolen by prisoners during their removal. No prisoners can pass over the Northern Central Railroad, as we are at present advised, within less time than two weeks.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Colonel 127th U. S. Colored Troops, Commanding Post.


Varina, Va., March 22, 1865.

Brigadier General JOHN A. RAWLINS,

Chief of Staff, Headquarters Armies, &c.:

GENERAL: I have the honor to inclose herein for your information an official copy of a letter addressed to me by Honorable R. Ould, Agent for Exchange, bearing date "Richmond, Va., August 10, 1864*", in which you will find embodied the agreement and basis for the exchange of prisoners of war now being carried on between the respective belligerents.

I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Lieutenant-Colonel and U. S. Assistant Agent for Exchange.

CITY POINT, VA., March 22, 1865.

Major General JOHN M. SCHOFIELD,

Commanding Department of North Carolina:

Your action thus far in the matter of exchanges is satisfactory and is approved. You will continue to receive and receipt for all Union prisoners of war delivered to you by the rebels, but you will make no deliveries in return. All deliveries of prisoners to the rebels will be made on the James River. An army commander is authorized to exchange, man for man, all prisoners captured on the ground, with



* See Vol. VII, this series, p. 578.