War of the Rebellion: Serial 121 Page 0424 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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OFFICE U. S. GRANT AGENT FOR EXCHANGE OF PRISONERS,

Varina, Va., March 23, 1865.

Brigadier General JOHN A. RAWLINS,

Chief of Staff, Headquarters Armies, &c.:

GENERAL: I have the honor [to] make the following statement in answer to that portion of your communication of the 22nd [21st] instant which relates to citizen prisoners. No specific agreement has been entered into between Judge Ould and myself in reference to citizen prisoners. The correspondence between Lieutenant-General Grant and General R. E. Lee is the basis upon which I understand the release of citizens confined in Southern prisons has been consummated. Mr. Ould whenever this subject has been under discussion has insisted upon certain stipulations in connection with the release of citizen prisoners which our authorities have always opposed, being in substance an agreement that "arrest of non-combatants should not be made except in cases where it might be found necessary to make temporary arrest, for the purpose of preventing parties giving information of military movements, and persons so arrested to be promptly released as soon, as the emergency requiring such arrest shall cease to exist". Our authorities declining to accept this proposition, and Mr. Ould being unwilling to yield the point, rendered it practically impossible for terms in behalf of this class of prisoners to be made. Since the correspondence of Lieutenant-General Grant and General Lee on this subject Mr. Ould informed me of his intention to release all citizen prisoners held by Confederate authorities and he hoped our authorities would do the same. He has since informed me that orders have been issued by him for the release of all our citizen prisoners held in the Confederacy, and that all those who were confined in Richmond and Salisbury have been delivered either here or at Wilmington.

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

JNO E. MULFORD,

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

OFFICE ASST. AGENT FOR EXCHANGE OF PRISONERS,

Varina, Va., March 23, 1865.

Aggregate of prisoners received and delivered at Savannah, Charleston, and in James River from November 1, 1864, to March 22, 1865, inclusive.

Federals received:

November and December, Savannah and Charleston........... 10,916

November to March 22, 1865, James River.................. 8,348

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Total.................................................... 19,348

To the above you will add our receipts at Wilmington, which I believe are about 8,000 men and 1,000 officers.

Confederates delivered:

November and December, Savannah and Charleston............ 3,137

November to March 22, 1865, James River................... 22,916

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Total..................................................... 26,053

JNO E. MULFORD,

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