War of the Rebellion: Serial 121 Page 0908 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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FORT MONROE, VA., May 10, 1866.

ADJUTANT-GENERAL U. S. ARMY, Washington, D. C.:

SIR: Inclosed I transmit special report of the health of state prisoner Jefferson Davis, made in compliance with telegraphic instructions from the Adjutant-General's Office.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

GEO. E. COOPER,

Surgeon, U. S. Army.

[Inclosure.]

FORT MONROE, VA., May 9, 1866.

ADJUTANT-GENERAL U. S. ARMY, Washington, D. C.:

SIR: In compliance with directions from the President of the United States to me, given through the office of the Adjutant-General, I have made a special examination of state prisoner Jefferson Davis, now in confinement at this post, and report the following to be the result of said examination:

He is considerably emaciated, the fatty tissue having almost disappeared leaving his skin much shriveled. His muscles are small, flaccid, and very soft, and he has but little muscular strength. He is quite weak and debilitated, consequently his gait is becoming uneven and irregular. His digestive organs at present are in comparatively good condition but become quickly deranged under anything but the most carefully prepared food. With a diet disagreeing with him dyspeptic symptoms promptly make their appearance, soon followed by vertigo, severe facial and cranial neuralgia, an erysipelatous inflammation of the posterior scalp and right side of nose, which quickly affects the right eye (the only sound one he now has) and extends through the nasal duct into the interior nose. His nervous system is greatly deranged, being much prostrated and excessively irritable. Slight noises, which are scarcely perceptible to a man in robust health cause him much pain, the description of the sensation being as of one flayed and having every sentient nerve exposed to the waves of sound. Want of sleep has been a great and almost the principal cause of his nervous excitability. This has been produced by the tramp of the creaking boots of the sentinels on post round the prison room and the relieval of the guard at the expiration of every two hours which almost invariably wakens him.

Prisoner Davis states that he has scarcely enjoyed over two hours of sleep unbroken at one time since his confinement. Means have been taken by placing matting on the floors for the sentinels to walk on to alleviate this source of disturbance, but which only partial success. His vital condition is low and he has but little recuperative force. Should he be attacked by any of the severe forms of disease to which the tide-water region of Virginia is subject, I, with reason, fear for the result.

A copy of this report I have furnished to the headquarters of the Military District of Fort Monroe, in compliance with orders from the major-general commanding.*

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

GEO. E. COOPER,

Surgeon, U. S. Army.

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*In the handwriting of General Townsend a copy of this paper is indorsed, as follows: "Original of report left with President May 12, 1866."

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