Home Store Products Research Design Strategy Support New
 Research US War Dept. Official Records HTML Ser. II, Vol. 1, Ch. 3.

THE
WAR OF THE REBELLION:
A COMPILATION OF THE
OFFICIAL RECORDS
OF THE
UNION AND CONFEDERATE ARMIES.

{p.563}

SERIES II, VOL I.
PRISONERS OF WAR, ETC.
–––
UNION POLICY OF REPRESSION IN MARYLAND.

–––

SUMMARY OF PRINCIPAL EVENTS.

Apr.20-26,1861.–Burning of the railroad bridges by order of the mayor, to prevent the passage of Union troops through Baltimore.
27, 1861.–Lieut. Gen. Winfield Scott, U. S. Army, announces the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus, by direction of President Lincoln.
May16, 1861.–The General-in-Chief empowers Bvt. Maj. Gen. George Cadwalader, U. S. Army, to arrest persons under certain circumstances.
26, 1861.–Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, of the U. S. Supreme Court, issues a writ of habeas corpus. His opinion in the matter of Prisoner John Merryman.
June24, 1861.–Maj. Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks, U. S. Army, is directed to “quietly seize” the Baltimore Police Commissioners.
27, 1861.–Arrest of George P. Kane, Marshal of Police of Baltimore.
July1, 1861.–Maj. Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks, U. S. Army, reports the arrest of the Baltimore Police Commissioners. His proclamation to the people of Baltimore.
29, 1861.–The Baltimore Police Commissioners from their prison memorialize Congress for redress.
Aug.1-12, 1861.–Police Commissioner Charles Howard addresses Secretary Simon Cameron and General Scott, protesting against alleged harsh treatment of the political prisoners in Fort Lafayette.
31, 1861.–Hon. Montgomery Blair recommends that certain Baltimore newspapers be suppressed.
Sept.12, 1861.–Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan, U. S. Army, after conference with the President and Secretary of War, orders the arrest of disloyal members of the Maryland Legislature.
20, 1861.–The prisoners are sent to Fort Lafayette. Governor Thomas H. Hicks, of Maryland, indorses the act of arrest.
30, 1861.–Ex-Marshal George P. Kane, from Fort Lafayette, writes to President Lincoln calling attention to his treatment.
Nov.1, 1861.–Maj. Gen. John A. Dix’s proclamation of his determination to protect the ballot box.
12, 1861.–Governor Hicks protests against the release of obnoxious members of the Maryland Legislature.
Dec.10, 1861.–The House Judiciary Committee reports back the police commissioners’ memorial, and asks to be discharged from its further consideration.
Nov.29, 1862.–Ex-Marshal George F. Kane, of Baltimore, after seventeen months’ imprisonment, arrives in Baltimore, and denounces Secretary of State William H. Seward in a newspaper card.

CONTENTS.

The Threatened Outbreak in Maryland-Political Arrests and the Causes Therefor.564
Arrest of the Mayor, Marshal and Police Commissioners of Baltimore by the Military Authorities.619
Arrest and Detention of Certain Members of the Maryland Legislature.667
NOTE.-For additional correspondence, etc., relating to miscellaneous political arrests and the treatment of suspected and disloyal persons, North and South, during the early days of the rebellion, see Volume II, this Series.-COMPILER.

{p.564}

The Threatened Outbreak in Maryland-Political Arrests and the Causes Therefor.

[For contemporaneous records covering military events in Maryland, including the Baltimore riots, the occupation of that city by the Union troops under General Butler, and the re-opening of communications between Washington and the North, see Series I, Vol. II.]

–––

WASHINGTON, April 18, 1861.

His Excellency THOMAS H. HICKS, Governor of Maryland.

SIR: The President is informed that threats are made and measures taken by unlawful combinations of misguided citizens of Maryland to prevent by force the transit of U. S. troops across Maryland on their way pursuant to orders to the defense of this capital. The information is from such sources and in such shape that the President thinks it his duty to make it known to you so that all loyal and patriotic citizens of your State may be warned in time and that you may be prepared to take immediate and effective measures against it.

Such an attempt could have only the most deplorable consequences; and it would be as agreeable to the President as it would be to yourself that it should be prevented or overcome by the loyal authorities and citizens of Maryland rather than averted by any other means.

I am, very respectfully, yours, &c.,

SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.

–––

BALTIMORE, April 19, 1861.

[The PRESIDENT.]

SIR: This will be presented to you by the Hon. H. Lennox Bond, George W. Dobbin and John C. Brune, esqs., who will proceed to Washington by an express train at my request in order to explain fully the fearful condition of affairs in this city. The people are exasperated to the highest degree by the passage of troops and the citizens are universally decided In the opinion that no more should be ordered to come.

The authorities of the city did their best to-day to protect both strangers and citizens and to prevent any collision but in vain; and but for their great efforts a fearful slaughter would have occurred.

Under these circumstances it is my solemn duty to inform you that it is not possible for more soldiers to pass through Baltimore unless they fight their way at every step.

I therefore hope and trust and most earnestly request that no more troops be permitted or ordered by the Government to pass through the city. If they should attempt it the responsibility for the blood shed will not rest upon me.

With great respect, your obedient servant,

GEO. WM. BROWN, Mayor.

{p.565}

[Appended to the foregoing.]

His Excellency ABRAHAM LINCOLN, President of the United States:

I have been in Baltimore since Tuesday evening last and co-operated with Mayor G. W. Brown in his untiring efforts to allay and prevent the excitement and suppress the fearful outbreak as indicated above and I fully concur in all that is said by him in the above communication.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

THOMAS H. HICKS, Governor of Maryland.

–––

STATE OF MARYLAND EXECUTIVE CHAMBER, Annapolis, April 20, 1861.

Hon. S. CAMERON.

SIR: Since I saw you in Washington last I have been in Baltimore City laboring in conjunction with the mayor of that city to preserve peace and order but I regret to say with little success. Up to yesterday there appeared promise but the outbreak came; the turbulent passions of the riotous element prevailed; fear for safety became reality; what they had endeavored to conceal but what was known to us was no longer concealed but made manifest; the rebellious element* had the control of things. ... They took possession of the armories, have the arms and ammunition, and I therefore think it prudent to decline (for the present) responding affirmatively to the requisition made by President Lincoln for four regiments of infantry.

With great respect, I am, your obedient servant,

THOS. H. HICKS.

* For reports of the attack of the mob on the U. S. troops passing through Baltimore April 19, 1861, here alluded to by Governor Hicks, see Series I, Vol II, pp. 7-21.

–––

WASHINGTON, April 20, 1861.

Governor HICKS:

I desire to consult with you and the mayor of Baltimore relative to preserving the peace of Maryland. Please come immediately by special train which you can take at Baltimore; or if necessary one can be sent from hence. Answer forthwith.

LINCOLN.

–––

BALTIMORE, Saturday, April 20, 1861-10 o’clock.

[General SCOTT.]

MY DEAR GENERAL: There has been no arrival from the North. Some one or more bridges have been destroyed; where it is not known; telegraph interrupted. Warford has sent by horses along the road to find where the trouble is. ... Depend upon it a vigorous and efficient plan of action must be decided on and carried out or we will have to give up the capital.

The communication with the South is perfect both by railroad and telegraph and we must have the same or we are gone. No arrivals {p.566} from Philadelphia or New York and no information. Rumor says the bridge across the Gunpowder is destroyed and also a bridge some six or eight miles out of the city. ... Let there be prompt action. ...

Yours, truly,

D. WILMOT.

–––

SATURDAY, April 20, 1861-11 o’clock.

[General SCOTT:]

Have just heard that the bridges between Ashland and Cockeysville and two or three nearer town are burned. Will advise the forces in Philadelphia and such as may be at Harrisburg to come upon this road as far as they can and protect the balance of the road and protect while temporarily repairing the bridges or so much as is necessary-the balance to come in force and well armed to within three miles of Baltimore and cross over to Washington [branch], and if in our possession as it should be to proceed by rail to Washington; if not to march by forced marches to Washington. ...

Yours,

D. WILMOT.

–––

HAGERSTOWN, April 22, 1861.

Governor T. H. HICKS, Annapolis:

Virginia troops searching houses in Maryland on Saturday near Harper’s Ferry for arms. I appealed to General Harper, commander, to recall them which he promised if Northern troops are forbidden. What is to be done with Southern? What steps shall I take?

EDWARD M. MOBLEY, Sheriff of Washington County.

–––

PHILADELPHIA, April 28, 1861.

Hon. SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.

DEAR SIR: Since I wrote my last of this date I have been informed that the Baltimoreans and Marylanders have destroyed the whole of the bridges on the Northern Central. This seems to have been a mere spite action and must convince the Government that those loyal to the Government in Maryland are in a vast minority. As soon as the capital is safe from attack it seems to me that the Government should at once turn on Baltimore and place it under martial law and require that it should pay all damages to the railroads it has destroyed and to their business.

...

Yours, truly,

J. EDGAR THOMSON, President Pennsylvania Central Railroad.

{p.567}

–––

HDQRS. THIRD BRIGADE, MASSACHUSETTS VOL. MILITIA, Annapolis, Md., April 23, 1861.

His Excellency THOMAS H. HICKS, Governor of the State of Maryland:

...

I have understood within the last hour that some apprehensions were entertained of an insurrection of the negro population of this neighborhood. I am anxious to convince all classes of persons that the forces under my command are not here in any way to interfere with or countenance any interference with the laws of the State. I am therefore ready to co-operate with your Excellency in suppressing most promptly and effectively any insurrection against the laws of Maryland.

I beg therefore that you announce publicly that any portion of the forces under my command is at your Excellency’s disposal to act immediately for the preservation and quietness of the peace of this community.

And I have the honor to be, your Excellency’s obedient servant,

B. F. BUTLER, General of the Third Brigade.

–––

THIRD BRIGADE U. S. MILITIA, Annapolis, Md., April 23, 1861.

His Excellency THOMAS H. HICKS, Governor of Maryland:

You are credibly informed that I have taken possession of the Annapolis and Elk Ridge Railroad. ... If the government of the State had taken possession of the railroad in any emergency I should have long waited before I entered upon it. But as I had the honor to inform your Excellency in regard to the insurrection against the laws of Maryland I am here armed to maintain those laws if your Excellency desires and the peace of the United States against all disorderly persons whatever. I am endeavoring to save and not to destroy; to obtain means of transportation so I can vacate the capital prior to the sitting of the Legislature and not be under the painful necessity of occupying your beautiful city while the Legislature is in session.

I have the honor to be, your Excellency’s obedient servant,

B. F. BUTLER, Brigadier-General.

–––

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, April 27, 1861.

The undersigned, General-in-Chief of the Army, has received from the President of the United States the following communication:

COMMANDING GENERAL ARMY OF THE UNITED STATES:

You are engaged in repressing an insurrection against the laws of the United States.

If at any point on or in the vicinity of the military line which is now used between the city of Philadelphia via Perryville, Annapolis City and Annapolis Junction you find resistance which renders it necessary to suspend the writ of habeas corpus for the public safety, you personally or through the officer in command at the point where resistance occurs are authorized to suspend that writ.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

{p.568}

In accordance with the foregoing warrant the undersigned devolves on Major-General Patterson, commanding the Department of Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland; Brigadier-General Butler, commanding the Department of Annapolis, and Colonel Mansfield, commanding the Washington Department, a like authority each within the limits of his command to execute in all proper cases the instructions of the President.

WINFIELD SCOTT.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, May 6, 1861.

Lieutenant-General SCOTT.

GENERAL: In obedience to your command, I have occupied the station at the Relay House, nine miles from Baltimore. ...

An officer has been detailed to examine the trains and stop all armed men, arms and munitions of war. Before, however, we established a full surveillance of the trains a squad of some ten or twelve men from Baltimore passed up the road to join the traitors at Harper’s Ferry.

... I learn that I am in the immediate neighborhood of the residence of Major-General Carroll, a gentleman who is most bitter in his hostility to the Government, who ordered out the troops [militia] under his command to oppose the passage of the U. S. troops across Baltimore. Two companies of cavalry alone responded to the call from this vicinity. They were commanded by Capt. William H. B. Dorsey and Capt. George R. Gaither, jr., both violent rebels who have more than once put themselves in a hostile attitude to the United States Government. They have conducted themselves with great violence and in fact are now in arms against the Union although nominally holding commissions from the governor of Maryland. Can anything be done with them I Might they not be arrested and at least restrained until we are certain what will be the disposition of Maryland? But this is a matter for your better judgment.

...

I trust my acts may meet your approbation whatever you may think of my suggestions.

Most truly, your obedient servant,

BENJ. F. BUTLER, Brigadier-General, Commanding.

–––

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, May 7, 1861.

Brig. Gen. B. F. BUTLER, Commanding, &c., Relay House.

GENERAL: The general-in-chief directs me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 6th instant and to say in reply that in regard to the arresting of persons who commit acts of hostility to the Government you are clothed with the same authority which has been conferred upon him and he has confidence in your discreet exercise of it.

In relation to the surveillance of trains passing into Virginia the general approves it.

...

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

{p.569}

–––

FREDERICK, May 8, 1861.

COMMANDING OFFICER, Relay House:

We are threatened with an invasion from Baltimore conjoined with traitors in our midst. We expect upward of 100 men from Baltimore to-night and their friends are preparing to meet them here. Send us 500 men by first train with power to arrest and disarm. Answer immediately.

M. NELSON, Judge of Court of Frederick County.

–––

Extract from report of Baltimore Police Commissioners of events the day following the Riot in Baltimore.

... The board were equally unanimous in their judgment that as good citizens it was their duty to the city and to the State of Maryland to adopt any measures whatsoever that might be necessary at such a juncture to prevent the immediate arrival in the city of further bodies of troops from the Eastern or Northern States, though the object of the latter might be solely to pass through the city. It was suggested that the most feasible if not the most practicable mode of thus stopping for a time the approach of such troops would be to obstruct the Philadelphia, Wilmington and Baltimore and the Northern Central Railroads by disabling some of the bridges on both roads. His honor the mayor stated to the board that his excellency the governor with whom he had a few minutes before been in consultation in the presence of several citizens concurred in these views; they were likewise those of the board and instructions were given for carrying them into effect. This was accordingly done. The injury thus done on the railroads amounted to but a few thousand dollars on each; subsequently as has been stated further and greater damage was done to other structures on the roads by parties in the country or others, but this was without the sanction or authority of the board and they have no accurate information on the subject.

...

CHARLES HOWARD, President.

–––

Extract from report of the Mayor of Baltimore.

[BALTIMORE, May 9 (?), 1861.]

To THE HONORABLE THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF MARYLAND:

In the report recently made to your honorable body by the board of police commissioners of the city of Baltimore it is stated that in the great emergency which existed in this city on the 19th ultimo it was suggested that the most feasible if not the only practicable mode of stopping for a time the approach of troops to Baltimore was to obstruct the Philadelphia, Wilmington and Baltimore and the Northern Central Railroads by disabling some of the bridges on both roads; and it is added that “his honor the mayor stated to the board that his excellency the governor with whom he had a few minutes before been in consultation in the presence of several citizens concurred in these views.”

As this concurrence has since been explicitly denied by his excellency Governor Hicks in an official communication addressed to the {p.570} Senate of Maryland on the 4th instant which I have just seen, it is due to myself that I should lay before you the grounds on which the statement was made to the board of police on which they as well as myself acted. I seriously regret that so grave a misunderstanding exists between the governor and myself on so important a subject.

On the evening of the 19th ultimo and after the collision had taken place I mentioned to Governor Hicks that I had begun to fear it might be necessary to burn the railroad bridges, but I did not then in consequence of intelligence which had been received think it would be; to which he replied that he had no authority to give such an order.

...

At about 12 p.m. the Hon. E. Louis Lowe and Marshal George P. Kane called at my house where Governor Hicks was passing the night and Marshal Kane informed me that a telegram had been received that other troops were to come to Baltimore over the Northern Central Railroad. There was also a report that troops were on their way who it was thought might even then be at Perryville on their way to Baltimore. Mr. Lowe, Marshal Kane, my brother, John Cumming Brown, and myself went immediately to the chamber of Governor Hicks and laid the matter before him. The point was pressed that if troops were suddenly to come to Baltimore with a determination to pass through a terrible collision and bloodshed would take place and the consequences to Baltimore would be fearful and that the only way to avert the calamity was to destroy the bridges. To this the governor replied, “It seems to be necessary,” or words to that effect.

He was then asked by me whether he gave his consent to the destruction of the bridges and he distinctly although apparently with great reluctance replied in the affirmative. I do not assert that I have given the precise language used by Governor Hicks but I am very clear that I have stated it with substantial correctness and that his assent was unequivocal and in answer to a question by me which elicited a distinct affirmative reply.

After this but before the interview was over two gentlemen came into the room both of them strangers to me but one was introduced as the brother of Governor Hicks and I am confident that the assent of the governor to the burning of the bridges was repeated in the presence of those gentlemen.

I went immediately from the chamber of the governor to the office of the marshal of police where Charles Howard, esq., the president of the board of police, was waiting and reported to him the assent of the governor to the destruction of the bridges.

Mr. Howard or some one else made a further inquiry as to what had been said by the governor whereupon Mr. Lowe, Marshal Kane and my brother John C. Brown, all declared that they were present at the interview and heard Governor Hicks give his assent.

The order to destroy the bridges was accordingly given and carried out in the manner already reported to your honorable body.

I refer to the accompanying statements of Colonel Kane and Mr. J. C. Brown* in confirmation of the correctness of my recollection of what occurred at the interview with Governor Hicks.

With great respect, your obedient servant,

GEO. WM. BROWN, Mayor.

* Statements omitted. Both confirm the mayor’s version. See Series I, Vol. II, pp. 11-15.

{p.571}

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, Federal Hill, Baltimore, May 15, 1861.

Lieutenant-General SCOTT:

... Thus the carrying off of some 400 or 500 stand of arms was accomplished by the police under the direction of the board of police. I found certain other arms being shipped apparently for improper purposes to a place called Snow Hill. I have sent out and brought in forty minie rifles. The remaining arms stored opposite the customhouse amounting to 2,700 stand I have caused to be seized and sent to Fort McHenry. I have caused Mr. Ross Winans to be arrested and sent to Annapolis; but for greater safety as I have no place of confinement save a jail I shall cause him to be removed to Fort McHenry, there to await the action of the civil authorities unless otherwise ordered. I have found several manufactories of arms, supplies and munitions of war for the rebels who are being constantly supplied from the city.

...

I have issued a proclamation a copy of which I inclose* and which I trust you will approve. It became necessary in my judgment in order to set right the thousand conflicting stories and rumors of the intentions of the Government as to Baltimore which were taken advantage of by the mob to incite insubordination and encourage a spirit of insurrection, and which showed itself upon our taking possession of the Government arms but was instantly suppressed upon a show of force.

...

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

BENJ. F. BUTLER, Brigadier-General, Commanding.

* Omitted here. See Series I, Vol. II, p. 50.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Fort McHenry, Md., May 16, 1861.

ASSISTANT ADJUTANT-GENERAL, Headquarters of the Army, Washington, D. C.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report for the information of the lieutenant-general commanding the army that by direction of Brig. Gen. B. F. Butler, commanding the Department of Annapolis, I yesterday received as a prisoner for safe-keeping Mr. Ross Winans of the city of Baltimore, charged with treason against the United States.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. W. MORRIS, Major Fourth Artillery, Commanding.

–––

WASHINGTON, May 16, 1861.

Bvt. Maj. Gen. G. CADWALADER, U. S. Army, Commanding Department of Annapolis, Baltimore, Md.

SIR: I have already by the direction of the general-in-chief addressed to you a letter and a telegram of yesterday’s date and have received your acknowledgment of the letter. Herewith you will receive a power* to arrest persons under certain circumstances and to hold them prisoners though they should be demanded by writs of habeas corpus.

{p.572}

This is a high and delicate trust and as you cannot fail to perceive to be executed with judgment and discretion. Nevertheless in times of civil strife errors if any should be on the side of safety to the country. This is the language of the general-in-chief himself, who desires an early report from you on the subject of the number of troops deemed necessary for your department.

I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

P. S.-The lieutenant-general desires me to add that he has just been instructed by highest authority to cause Mr. Ross Winans, of Baltimore, now a military prisoner at Fort McHenry to be liberated on condition of his written parole to this effect: “I solemnly give my parole of honor that I will not openly or covertly commit any act of hostility against the Government of the United States pending existing troubles or hostilities between the said Government and the Southern seceded States or any one of them.”

* Not found. But see closing paragraph of Cadwalader’s answer, following.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, Baltimore, May 16, 1861.

Lieut. Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

SIR: ... On receipt of your letter which gave me the first official [information] I had that Mr. Ross Winans was a military prisoner at Fort McHenry I sent an officer to read to him the condition of the written parole upon acceptance of which I was instructed to liberate him. The result was that Mr. Winans signed the parole and was immediately liberated. I inclose the parole* duly signed and witnessed.

...

The power to arrest persons under such circumstances and to hold them prisoners though they should be demanded by writs of habeas corpus is certainly a high and delicate trust. I will use every effort to execute it if necessary with prudence and discretion and with the best judgment I am capable of giving to the subject. As a matter of caution I would merely state that I did not receive any further power to arrest persons under circumstances than that which is contained in your letter of this date, as your letter seems to imply that I was to receive a power with instructions to accompany the letter. Awaiting your orders either by letter or telegraph,

I am, very respectfully, yours,

GEO. CADWALADER, Brevet Major-General, Commanding.

* See p. 689.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Philadelphia, Pa., May 21, 1861.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army.

COLONEL: In the absence of General Patterson I forward the accompanying report of the capture of parties engaged in the burning of bridges. I suggested to Colonel Dare that he should ascertain if the {p.573} civil authorities in the district where the offense was committed would take cognizance of these cases and hold the men by bail to appear in the future. If they would do so to turn them over, first (as I understand they are responsible persons) requiring them to take oath to commit no act of hostility against the United States. If the civil authorities will receive these men I think the effect of offering them will be a happy one.

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

F. J. PORTER, Assistant Adjutant-General.

[Inclosure.]

HEADQUARTERS CAMP SUSQUEHANNA, Perryville, Md., May 19, 1861.

Maj. F. J. PORTER, Assistant Adjutant-General.

MAJOR: I have the honor to report that last evening signal rockets were reported in direction of Aberdeen. I immediately proceeded to Havre de Grace (Lieutenant-Colonel Birney being absent) and finding they were not according to code agreed upon considered no re-enforcement necessary. I proceeded to Aberdeen to ascertain why the rockets had been fired and at that post they were reported as having been seen in the direction of Perrymansville. Taking a guard to that point I found all quiet.

Information having been given in relation to Capt. Benedict H. Kean, in command of Spesutia Rangers, William B. Michael and Thomas Wilson, Captain Hofmann, of Company E, First Regiment, Philadelphia City Guards, arrested them, the first as in command of forces hostile to United States and the two latter-named gentlemen as being engaged in destruction of bridges. The arrests were made quietly and every consideration shown to the gentlemen detained. They were taken to Perryville and lodged at my quarters. From representations made by Captain Kean and by other parties the Spesutia Rangers have not been engaged or intending to engage against the Government. His action in opposing the destruction of the bridges as represented by credible parties induced his release on parole of honor to appear if wanted. The others I believe to have been engaged in destruction of bridges and that the evidence will be ample to sustain the fact. I am now detaining them until I receive instructions from headquarters.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

CHAS. P. DARE, Commanding Post.

–––

HDQRS. Co. E, FIRST REGT., PHILADELPHIA CITY GUARDS, Bush River, Md., May 23, 1861.

Personally appeared before me in the service of the United States Alonzo Bowman, a resident of this place, who being duly sworn by me said that Benjamin Elliott, of Hall Cross Roads; Oliver Kenly, of Hall Cross Roads; Sidney Hall, near Perrymansville; Rush Dalam, of Perrymansville; Lewis Michael, of Bush River Neck; James Halloway, near Perrymansville; Augustus Hoffman, Perrymansville; Robert Smith, Sputer (Spesutia?); John Quin, Perrymansville; William Wilson, Perrymansville; William Michael and Eldridge Gallop, Perrymansville, {p.574} were to his positive knowledge actively engaged in the destruction of the railroad bridge at this place on 26th day of April, A. D. 1861.

In evidence of the above he has signed his name hereto.

ALONZO BOWMAN. HENRY SHAPLEY. O. B. CROSSMAN. J. W. HOFMANN, Capt. Comdg. Company F, First Regt. Philadelphia City Guards, 23d Regt. Pennsylvania Vols.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, Baltimore, May 27, 1861.

Lieut. Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Asst. Adjt. Gen., Hdqrs. of the Army, Washington, D. C.

COLONEL: On the 25th instant Mr. John Merryman was arrested near Cockeysville, to the northward of the city of Baltimore, by the order of Colonel Yohe acting under instructions from Maj. Gen. William H. Keim. I inclose a copy of the instructions given by Colonel Yohe to Captain Heckman under which the arrest was made and also a copy of the written statement made by Adjt. James Miltimore and Lieut. William H. Abel of the circumstances attending the arrest which was made on their arrival at Fort McHenry with the prisoner. You are aware that neither Colonel Yohe nor General Keim are within the limits of the department under my command. I do not know the address of Colonel Yohe. General Keim is I think in the neighborhood of Harrisburg.

I directed the officers named who brought the prisoner here to have more specific charges and specifications furnished against the accused with the names of witnesses by which it was expected to prove them and the nature of their testimony, which then it was my intention to forward to you for the instruction of the general-in-chief.

I regret to say that I have not as yet been furnished with this information. I was yesterday evening served with a writ of habeas corpus issued by the Hon. Roger B. Taney, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, commanding me to be and appear at the U. S. court-room in the city of Baltimore on Monday (this day), the 27th day of May, 1861, at 11 o’clock in the morning, and that I have with me the body of John Merryman of Baltimore County now in my custody, and that I certify and make known the day and cause of the capture and detention of the said John Merryman and that I do submit to and receive whatsoever the said court shall determine upon concerning me in this behalf.

I have the honor to inclose herewith a copy of said writ together with a copy of my reply thereto which will be handed to the court at 11 o’clock this day, the hour named in said writ.

Requesting to be furnished with further instructions as to the course I am to pursue in this case,

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, yours,

GEO. CADWALADER, Brevet Major-General, Commanding.

{p.575}

[Inclosure No. 1.]

HEADQUARTERS, May 21, 1861.

Captain HECKMAN, Company D.

SIR: I have been directed by Major-General Keim to seize the arms of the company near you and arrest the captain if in arms against the Government. You will be cautious in your movements and be well satisfied that the captain or any of them are spreading secession sentiments and using their influence in favor of the Southern Confederacy. By all means get the arms. Do not make it known until you are ready and be sure that you accomplish your purpose. If you think you need any assistance you can call upon Company E, at Cockeysville. If you arrest the captain take him to General Cadwalader’s department. Do not be precipitate. Act coolly and deliberately but determinedly.

Yours, &c.,

SAM’L YOHE, Colonel First Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

This is to certify that Mr. John Merryman was arrested by orders of Colonel Yohe as first lieutenant of a secession company who have in their possession arms belonging to the United States Government for the purpose of using the same against the Government. The prisoner acknowledged being lieutenant of said company in the presence of Adjutant Miltimore, of First Regiment of Pennsylvania Volunteers, and Lieutenant Abel, Company D, First Regiment. It can also be proven that the prisoner has been drilling with his company and has uttered and advanced secession doctrines. The prisoner was arrested on the morning of May 25 at his residence about two miles from Cockeysville.

JAMES MILTIMORE, Adjutant, WILLIAM H. ABEL, Lieutenant, First Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers.

[Inclosure No. 3.]

THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, District of Maryland, to wit:

To GEORGE CADWALADER, GREETING:

You are hereby commanded to be and appear before the Hon. Roger B. Taney, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, at the U. S. court room in the Masonic Hall in the city of Baltimore on Monday, the 27th day of May, 1861, at 11 o’clock in the morning, and that you have with you the body of John Merryman, of Baltimore County, and now in your custody, and that you certify and make known the day and cause of the capture and detention of the said John Merryman, and that you then and there do submit to and receive whatsoever the said court shall determine upon concerning you in this behalf according to law, and have you then and there this writ.

Witness, the Hon. R. B. Taney, Chief Justice of our Supreme Court, the first Monday in December, in the year of our Lord 1861.

[SEAL.]

THOS. SPICER, Circuit Clerk.

{p.576}

[Inclosure No. 4.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, Fort McHenry, May 26, 1861.

Hon. ROGER B. TANEY, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, Baltimore, Md.

SIR: The undersigned to whom the annexed writ of this date signed by Thomas Spicer, clerk of the Supreme Court of the United States, is directed most respectfully states that the arrest of Mr. John Merryman in the said writ named was not made with his knowledge or by his order or direction but was made by Col. Samuel Yohe acting under the orders of Maj. Gen. William H. Keim, both of said officers being in the military service of the United States but not within the limits of his command. The prisoner was brought to this post on the 25th instant by Adjt. James Miltimore and Lieut. William H. Abel by order of Colonel Yohe, and is charged with various acts of treason and with being publicly associated with and holding a commission as lieutenant in a company having in their possession arms belonging to the United States and avowing his purpose of armed hostility against the Government. He is also informed that it can be clearly established that the prisoner has made open and unreserved declarations of his association with this organized force; as being in avowed hostility to the Government and in readiness to co-operate with those engaged in the present rebellion against the Government of the United States.

He has further to inform you that he is duly authorized by the President of the United States in such cases to suspend the writ of habeas corpus for the public safety. This is a high and delicate trust and it has been enjoined upon him that it should be executed with judgment and discretion but he is nevertheless also instructed that in times of civil strife errors if any should be on the side of safety to the country. He most respectfully submits for your consideration that those who should co-operate in the present trying and painful position in which our country is placed should not by reason of any unnecessary want of confidence in each other increase our embarrassments. He therefore respectfully requests that you will postpone further action upon this case until he can receive instructions from the President of the United States when you shall hear further from him.

I have the honor to be, with high respect, your obedient servant,

GEO. CADWALADER, Brevet Major-General, U. S. Army, Commanding.

–––

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, May 28, 1861.

Bvt. Maj. Gen. G. CADWALADER, U. S. Army, Comdg. Department of Annapolis, Baltimore, Md.

GENERAL: Your letter of the 27th instant with inclosures reporting the arrest of John Merryman and the issue by Chief Justice Taney of a writ of habeas corpus in his case has been received.

The general-in-chief directs me to say under authority conferred upon him by the President of the United States and fully transferred to you that you will hold in secure confinement all persons implicated in treasonable practices unless you should become satisfied that the arrest in any particular case was made without sufficient evidence of guilt.

{p.577}

In returns to writs of habeas corpus by whomsoever issued you will most respectfully decline for the time to produce the prisoners but will say that when the present unhappy difficulties are at an end you will duly respond to the writs in question.

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

E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

–––

EX PARTE JOHN MERRYMAN.

Before the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, at chambers.

The application in this case for a writ of habeas corpus is made to me under the fourteenth section of the judiciary act of 1789 which renders effectual for the citizen the constitutional privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. That act gives to the courts of the United States as well as to each justice of the Supreme Court and to every district judge power to grant writs of habeas corpus for the purpose of an inquiry into the cause of commitment. The petition was presented to me at Washington under the impression that I would order the prisoner to be brought before me there, but as he was confined in Fort McHenry, at the city of Baltimore which is in my circuit, I resolved to hear it in the latter city, as obedience to the writ under such circumstances would not withdraw General Cadwalader who had him in charge from the limits of his military command.

The petition presents the following case: The petitioner resides in Maryland, in Baltimore County. While peaceably in his own house with his family, it was at 2 o’clock on the morning of the 25th of May, 1861, entered by an armed force professing to act under military orders. He was then compelled to rise from his bed, taken into custody and conveyed to Fort McHenry where he is imprisoned by the commanding officer without warrant from any lawful authority.

The commander of the fort, General George Cadwalader, by whom he is detained in confinement in his return to the writ does not deny any of the facts alleged in the petition. He states that the prisoner was arrested by order of General Keim, of Pennsylvania, and conducted as a prisoner to Fort McHenry by his order and placed in his (General Cadwalader’s) custody to be there detained by him as a prisoner.

A copy of the warrant or order under which the prisoner was arrested was demanded by his counsel and refused. And it is not alleged in the return that any specific act constituting an offense against the laws of the United States has been charged against him upon oath; but he appears to have been arrested upon general charges of treason and rebellion without proof and without giving the names of the witnesses or specifying the acts which in the judgment of the military officer constituted these crimes. And having the prisoner thus in custody upon these vague and unsupported accusations he refuses to obey the writ of habeas corpus upon the ground that he is duly authorized by the President to suspend it.

The case then is simply this: A military officer residing in Pennsylvania issues an order to arrest a citizen of Maryland upon vague and indefinite charges without any proof so far as appears. Under this order his house is entered in the night; he is seized as a prisoner and {p.578} conveyed to Fort McHenry and there kept in close confinement. And when a [writ of] habeas corpus is served on the commanding officer requiring him to produce the prisoner before a justice of the Supreme Court in order that he may examine into the legality of the imprisonment the answer of the officer is that he is authorized by the President to suspend the writ of habeas corpus at his discretion, and in the exercise of that discretion suspends it in this case and on that ground refuses obedience to the writ.

As the case comes before me therefore I understand that the President not only claims the right to suspend the writ of habeas corpus himself at his discretion but to delegate that discretionary power to a military officer, and to leave it to him to determine whether he will or will not obey judicial process that may be served upon him.

No official notice has been given to the courts of justice or to the public by proclamation or otherwise that the President claimed this power and had exercised it in the manner stated in the return. And I certainly listened to it with some surprise for I had supposed it to be one of those points of constitutional law upon which there was no difference of opinion and that it was admitted on all hands that the privilege of the writ could not be suspended except by act of Congress.

When the conspiracy of which Aaron Burr was the head became so formidable and was so extensively ramified as to justify in Mr. Jefferson’s opinion the suspension of the writ he claimed on his part no power to suspend it but communicated his opinion to Congress with all the proofs in his possession, in order that Congress might exercise its discretion upon the subject and determine whether the public safety required it. And in the debate which took place upon the subject no one suggested that Mr. Jefferson might exercise the power himself if in his opinion the public safety demanded it.

Having therefore regarded the question as too plain and too well settled to be open to dispute if the commanding officer had stated that upon his own responsibility and in the exercise of his own discretion he refused obedience to the writ I should have contented myself with referring to the clause in the Constitution and to the construction it received from every jurist and statesman of that day when the case of Burr was before them. But being thus officially notified that the privilege of the writ has been suspended under the orders and by the authority of the President and believing as I do that the President has exercised a power which he does not possess under the Constitution a proper respect for the high office he fills requires me to state plainly and fully the grounds of my opinion, in order to show that I have not ventured to question the legality of his act without a careful and deliberate examination of the whole subject.

The clause in the Constitution which authorizes the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus is in the ninth section of the first article.

This article is devoted to the legislative department of the United States and has not the slightest reference to the executive department. It begins by providing “that all legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.” And after prescribing the manner in which these two branches of the legislative department shall be chosen it proceeds to enumerate specifically the legislative powers which it thereby grants and legislative powers which it expressly prohibits, and at the conclusion of this specification a clause is inserted giving Congress “the power to make all laws which {p.579} may be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers and all other powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States or in any department or office thereof.”

The power of legislation granted by this latter clause is by its wording carefully confined to the specific objects before enumerated. But as this limitation was unavoidably somewhat indefinite it was deemed necessary to guard more effectually certain great cardinal principles essential to the liberty of the citizen and to the rights and equality of the States by denying to Congress in express terms any power of legislation over them. It was apprehended it seems that such legislation might be attempted under the pretext that it was necessary and proper to carry into execution the powers granted; and it was determined that there should be no room to doubt where rights of such vital importance were concerned, and accordingly this clause is immediately followed by an enumeration of certain subjects to which the powers of legislation shall not extend; and the great importance which the framers of the Constitution attached to the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus to protect the liberty of the citizen is proved by the fact that its suspension except in cases of invasion and rebellion is first in the list of prohibited powers; and even in these cases the power is denied and its exercise prohibited unless the public safety shall require it. It is true that in the cases mentioned Congress is of necessity the judge of whether the public safety does or does not require it; and its judgment is conclusive. But the introduction of these words is a standing admonition to the legislative body of the danger of suspending it and of the extreme caution they should exercise before they give the Government of the United States such power over the liberty of a citizen.

It is the second article of the Constitution that provides for the organization of the executive department and enumerates the powers conferred on it and prescribes its duties. And if the high power over the liberty of the citizens now claimed was intended to be conferred on the President it would undoubtedly be found in plain words in this article. But there is not a word in it that can furnish the slightest ground to justify the exercise of the power.

The article begins by declaring that the executive power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America to hold his office during the term of four years, and then proceeds to describe the mode of election and to specify in precise and plain words the powers delegated to him and the duties imposed upon him. And the short term for which he is elected and the narrow limits to which his power is confined show the jealousy and apprehensions of future danger which the framers of the Constitution felt in relation to that department of the Government and how carefully they withheld from it many of the powers belonging to the executive branch of the English Government which were considered as dangerous to the liberty of the subject, and conferred (and that in clear and specific terms) those powers only which were deemed essential to secure the successful operation of the Government.

He is elected as I have already said for the brief term of four years and is made personally responsible by impeachment for malfeasance in office. He is from necessity and the nature of his duties the commander-in-chief of the Army and Navy and of the militia when called into actual service. But no appropriation for the support of the Army can be made by Congress for a longer term than two years, so that it is in the power of the succeeding House of Representatives to withhold {p.580} the appropriation fonts support and thus disband it if in their judgment the President used or designed to use it for improper purposes. And although the militia when in actual service are under his command yet the appointment of the officers is reserved to the States as a security against the use of the military power for purposes dangerous to the liberties of the people or the rights of the States.

So too his powers in relation to the civil duties and authority necessarily conferred on him are carefully restricted as well as those belonging to his military character. He can not appoint the ordinary officers of Government nor make a treaty with a foreign nation or Indian tribe without the advice and consent of the Senate and can not appoint even inferior officers unless he is authorized by an act of Congress to do so. He is not empowered to arrest any one charged with an offense against the United States and whom he may from the evidence before him believe to be guilty; nor can he authorize any officer civil or military to exercise this power, for the fifth article of the amendments to the Constitution expressly provides that no person “shall be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law;” that is judicial process. And even if the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus was suspended by act of Congress and a party not subject to the rules and articles of war was afterwards arrested and imprisoned by regular judicial process he could not be detained in prison or brought to trial before a military tribunal, for the article in the amendments to the Constitution immediately following the one above referred to-that is the sixth article-provides that “in all criminal prosecutions the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.”

And the only power therefore which the President possesses where the “life, liberty or property” of a private citizen is concerned is the power and duty prescribed in the third section of the second article which requires “that he shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed.” He is not authorized to execute them himself or through agents or officers civil or military appointed by himself, hut he is to take care that they be faithfully carried into execution as they are expounded and adjudged by the coordinate branch of the Government to which that duty is assigned by the Constitution. It is thus made his duty to-come in aid of the judicial authority if it shall be resisted by a force too strong to be overcome without the assistance of the executive arm. But in exercising this power he acts in subordination to judicial authority, assisting it to execute its process and enforce its judgments.

With such provisions in the Constitution expressed in language too clear to be misunderstood by any one I can see no ground whatever for supposing that the President in any emergency or in any state of things can authorize the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or arrest a citizen except in aid of the judicial power. He certainly does not faithfully execute the laws if he takes upon himself legislative power by suspending the writ of habeas corpus-and the judicial power also by arresting and imprisoning a person without due process of law. Nor can any argument be drawn from the nature of sovereignty or the necessities of government for self-defense in times {p.581} of tumult and danger. The Government of the United States is one of delegated and limited powers. It derives its existence and authority altogether from the Constitution, and neither of its branches-executive, legislative or judicial-can exercise any of the powers of government beyond those specified and granted. For the tenth article of the amendments to the Constitution in express terms provides that “the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution nor prohibited by it to the States are reserved to the States respectively or to the people.”

Indeed the security against imprisonment by executive authority provided for in the fifth article of the amendments of the Constitution which I have before quoted is nothing more than a copy of a like provision in the English constitution which had been firmly established before the Declaration of Independence.

Blackstone in his Commentaries (1st vol., 137) states it in the following words:

To make imprisonment lawful it must he either by process from the courts of judicature or by warrant from some legal officer having authority to commit to prison.

And the people of the United Colonies who had themselves lived under its protection while they were British subjects were well aware of the necessity of this safeguard for their personal liberty. And no one can believe that in framing the Government-intending to guard still more efficiently the rights and the liberties of the citizen against executive encroachment and oppression-they would have conferred on the President a power which the history of England had proved to be dangerous and oppressive in the hands of the Crown and which the people of England had compelled it to surrender after a long and obstinate struggle on the part of the English executive to usurp and retain it.

The right of the subject to the benefit of the writ of habeas corpus it must be recollected was one of the great points in controversy during the long struggle in England between arbitrary government and free institutions, and must therefore have strongly attracted the attention of statesmen engaged in framing a new and as they supposed a freer government than the one which they had thrown off by the Revolution. For from the earliest history of the common law if a person was imprisoned-no matter by what authority-he had a right to the writ of habeas corpus to bring his case before the King’s Bench, and if no specific offense was charged against him in the warrant of commitment he was entitled to be forthwith discharged; and if an offense was charged which was bailable in its character the court was bound to set him at liberty on bail. And the most exciting contests between the Crown and the people of England from the time of Magna Charta were in relation to the privilege of this writ and they continued until the passage of the statute of 31st Charles II. commonly known as the great habeas corpus act. This statute put an end to the struggle and finally and firmly secured the liberty of the subject from the usurpation and oppression of the executive branch of the Government. It nevertheless conferred no new right upon the subject but only secured a right already existing; for although the right could not justly be denied there was often no effectual remedy against its violation. Until the statute of the 13th William III. the judges held their offices at the pleasure of the King, and the influence which he exercised over timid, time-serving and partisan judges often induced them upon some {p.582} pretext or other to refuse to discharge the party although he was entitled to it by law, or delayed their decisions from time to time so as to prolong the imprisonment of persons who were obnoxious to the King for their political opinions or had incurred his resentment in any other way.

The great and inestimable value of the habeas corpus act of the 31st Charles II. is that it contains provisions which compel courts and judges and all parties concerned to perform their duties promptly in the manner specified in the statute.

A passage in Blackstone’s Commentaries showing the ancient state of the law upon this subject and the abuses which were practiced through the power and influence of the Crown, and a short extract from Hallam’s Constitutional History stating the circumstances which gave rise to the passage of this statute, explain briefly but fully all that is material to this subject.

Blackstone in his Commentaries on the laws of England (3d vol., 133, 134) says:

To assert an absolute exemption from imprisonment in all cases is inconsistent with every idea of law and political society, and in the end would destroy all civil liberty by rendering its protection impossible.

But the glory of the English law consists in clearly defining the times, the causes and the extent-when, wherefore and to what degree the imprisonment of the subject maybe lawful. This it is which induces the absolute necessity of expressing upon every commitment the reason for which it is made that the court upon a habeas corpus may examine into its validity and according to the circumstances of the case may discharge, admit to bail or remand the prisoner.

And yet early in the reign of Charles I. the Court of King’s Bench relying on some arbitrary precedents (and those perhaps misunderstood) determined that they would not upon a habeas corpus either bail or deliver a prisoner though committed without any cause assigned in case he was committed by the special command of the King or by the Lords of the Privy Council. This drew on a parliamentary inquiry and produced the Petition of Rights-3 Charles I.-which recites this illegal judgment and enacts that no freeman hereafter shall be so imprisoned or detained. But when in the following year Mr. Selden and others were committed by the Lords of the Council in pursuance of his Majesty’s special command under a general charge of “notable contempts and stirring up sedition against the King and the Government,” the judges delayed for two terms (including also the long vacation) to deliver an opinion how far such a charge was bailable. And when at length they agreed that it was they however annexed a condition of finding sureties for their good behavior which still protracted their imprisonment; the chief justice, Sir Nicholas Hyde, at the same time declaring that “if they were again remanded for that cause perhaps the court would not afterward grant a habeas corpus being already acquainted with the cause of the imprisonment.” But this was heard with indignation and astonishment by every lawyer present, according to Mr. Selden’s own account of the matter whose resentment was not cooled at the distance of four and twenty years.

It is worthy of remark that the offenses charged against the prisoner in this case and relied on as a justification for his arrest and imprisonment in their nature and character and in the loose and vague manner in which they are stated bear a striking resemblance to those assigned in the warrant for the arrest of Mr. Selden. And yet even at that day the warrant was regarded as such a flagrant violation of the rights of the subject that the delay of the time-serving judges to set him at liberty upon the habeas corpus issued in his behalf excited universal indignation at the bar. The extract from Hallam’s Constitutional History is equally impressive and equally in point. It is in vol. 4, p. 14:

It is a very common mistake and not only among foreigners but many from whom some knowledge of our constitutional laws might be expected to suppose that this statute of Charles II. enlarged in a great degree our liberties and forms a sort of epoch in their history. But though a very beneficial enactment and eminently remedial in many cases of illegal imprisonment it introduced no new principle nor conferred any right upon the subject. From the earliest records of the English law {p.583} no freeman could be detained in prison except upon a criminal charge or conviction, or for a civil debt. In the former case it was always in his power to demand of the Court of King’s Bench a writ of habeas corpus ad subjiciendum directed to the person detaining him in custody, by which he was enjoined to bring up the body of the prisoner with the warrant of commitment that the court might judge of its sufficiency and remand the party, admit him to bail or discharge him according to the nature of the charge. This writ issued of right, and could not be refused by the court. It was not to bestow an immunity from arbitrary imprisonment which is abundantly provided for in Magna Charta (if indeed it was not more ancient) that the statute of Charles II. was enacted, but to cut off the abuses by which the government’s lust of power and servile subtlety of Crown lawyers had impaired so fundamental a privilege.

While the value set upon this writ, in England has been so great that the removal of the abuses which embarrassed its enjoyment have been looked upon as almost a new grant of liberty to the subject, it is not to be wondered at that the continuance of the writ thus made effective should have been the object of the most jealous care. Accordingly no power in England short of that of Parliament can suspend or authorize the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus. I quote again from Blackstone (1 Com., 136):

But the happiness of our constitution is that it is not left to the executive power to determine when the danger of the State is so great as to render this measure expedient. It is the Parliament only or legislative power that whenever it sees proper can authorize the Crown by suspending the habeas corpus for a short and limited time to imprison suspected persons without giving any reason for so doing.

And if the President of the United States may suspend the writ then the Constitution of the United States has conferred upon him more regal and absolute power over the liberty of the citizen than the people of England have thought it safe to intrust to the Crown-a power which the Queen of England cannot exercise at this day and which could not have been lawfully exercised by the sovereign even in the reign of Charles the First.

But I am not left to form my judgment upon this great question from analogies between the English Government and our own, or the commentaries of English jurists or the decisions of English courts, although upon this subject they are entitled to the highest respect and are justly regarded and received as authoritative by our courts of justice. To guide me to a right conclusion I have the Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States of the late Mr. Justice Story, not only one of the most eminent jurists of the age but for a long time one of the brightest ornaments of the Supreme Court of the United States, and also the clear and authoritative decision of that court itself given more than half a century since and conclusively establishing the principles I have above stated. Mr. Justice Story speaking in his Commentaries of the habeas corpus clause in the Constitution says:

It is obvious that cases of a peculiar emergency may arise which may justify, nay even require the temporary suspension of any right to the writ. But as it has frequently happened in foreign countries and even in England that the writ has upon various pretexts and occasions been suspended, whereby persons apprehended upon suspicion have suffered a long imprisonment sometimes from design and sometimes because they were forgotten, the right to suspend it is expressly confined to cases of rebellion or invasion where the public safety may require it. A very just and wholesome restraint, which cuts down at a blow a fruitful means of oppression capable of being abused in bad times to the worst of purposes. Hitherto no suspension of the writ has ever been authorized by Congress since the establishment of the Constitution. It would seem as the power is given to Congress to suspend the writ of habeas corpus in cases of rebellion or invasion that the right to judge whether the exigency had arisen must exclusively belong to that body. (3 Story’s Com. on the Constitution, sec. 1336.)

{p.584}

And Chief Justice Marshall in delivering the opinion of the Supreme Court in the case Ex parte Bollman and Swartwout uses this decisive language in 4 Cranch, 95:

It may be worthy of remark that this act (speaking of the one under which I am proceeding) was passed by the First Congress of the United States sitting under a Constitution which had declared “that the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus should not be suspended unless when in cases of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require it.” Acting under the immediate influence of this injunction they must have felt with peculiar force the obligation of providing efficient means by which this great constitutional privilege should receive life and activity, for if the means be not in existence the privilege itself would be lost although no law for its suspension should be enacted. Under the impression of this obligation they give to all the courts the power of awarding writs of habeas corpus.

And again in page 101:

If at any time the public safety should require the suspension of the powers vested by this act in the courts of the United States it is for the legislature to say so. That question depends on political considerations on which the legislature is to decide. Until the legislative will be expressed this court can only see its duty and must obey the laws.

I can add nothing to these clear and emphatic words of my great predecessor.

But the documents before me show that the military authority in this case has gone far beyond the mere suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. It has by force of arms thrust aside the judicial authorities and officers to whom the Constitution has confided the power and duty of interpreting and administering the laws and substituted a military government in its place to be administered and executed by military officers, for at the time these proceedings were had against John Merryman the district judge of Maryland-the commissioner appointed under the act of Congress-the district attorney and the marshal all resided in the city of Baltimore a few miles only from the home of the prisoner. Up to that time there had never been the slightest resistance or obstruction to the process of any court or judicial officer of the United States in Maryland except by the military authority. And if a military officer or any other person had reason to believe that the prisoner had committed any offense against the laws of the United States it was his duty to give information of the fact and the evidence to support it to the district attorney, and it would then have become the duty of that officer to bring the matter before the district judge or commissioner and if there was sufficient legal evidence to justify his arrest the judge or commissioner would have issued his warrant to the marshal to arrest him, and upon the hearing of the party would have held him to bail or committed him for trial according to the character of the offense as it appeared in the testimony, or would have discharged him immediately if there was not sufficient evidence to support the accusation. There was no danger of any obstruction or resistance to the action of the civil authorities and therefore no reason whatever for the interposition of the military. And yet under these circumstances a military officer stationed in Pennsylvania without giving any information to the district attorney and without any application to the judicial authorities assumes to himself the judicial power in the district of Maryland; undertakes to decide what constitutes the crime of treason or rebellion; what evidence (if indeed he required any) is sufficient to support the accusation and justify the commitment; and commits the party without having a hearing even before himself to close custody in a strongly-garrisoned fort to be there held it would seem during the pleasure of those who committed him.

{p.585}

The Constitution provides as I have before said that “no person shall be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law.” It declares that “the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated, and no warrant shall issue but upon probable cause supported by oath or affirmation and particularly describing the place to be-searched and the persons or things to be seized.” It provides that the party accused shall be entitled to a speedy trial in a court of justice.

And these great and fundamental laws which Congress itself could not suspend have been disregarded and suspended like the writ of habeas corpus by a military order supported by force of arms. Such is the case now before me; and I can only say that if the authority which the Constitution has confided to the judiciary department and judicial officers may thus upon any pretext or under any circumstances be usurped by the military power at its discretion the people of the United States are no longer living under a government of laws, but every citizen holds life, liberty and property at the will and pleasure of the army officer in whose military district he may happen to be found.

In such a case my duty was too plain to be mistaken. I have exercised all the power which the Constitution and laws confer on me but that power has been resisted by a force too strong for me to overcome. It is possible that the officer who had incurred this grave responsibility may have misunderstood his instructions and exceeded the authority intended to be given him. I shall therefore order all the proceedings in this case with my opinion to be filed and recorded in the circuit court of the United States for the district of Maryland and direct the clerk to transmit a copy under seal to the President of the United States. It will then remain for that high officer in fulfillment of his constitutional obligation to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed” to determine what measures he will take to cause the civil process of the United States to be respected and enforced.

R. B. TANEY, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, Fort McHenry, June 13, 1861.

The MAYOR OF THE CITY OF BALTIMORE.

SIR: I have the honor to transmit to you a copy of an order* issued to the troops of the United States in this city and the vicinity.

In pursuance of this authority no soldier will be permitted to leave his post or enter the city during this day without positive orders from the general in command except those who are voters under the constitution and laws of Maryland and whose rights as voters as I understand have been recognized in a communication addressed by you to my predecessor in command of this department.

I earnestly desire to co-operate with you in all measures that may tend to promote the peace of the city. The large police force wisely controlled I think if impartial and vigilant will have strength to suppress ordinary election tumults and preserve order. If they fail to do this or if any considerable portion of the people of Baltimore avail {p.586} themselves of the difficulties of the occasion to organize anarchy and overthrow all forms of government the responsibility for the results whatever they are will fall upon them.

I have the honor to be, most respectfully, your obedient servant,

NATH. P. BANKS.

* Omitted.

–––

WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, July 1, 1861.

Brig. Gen. J. K. F. MANSFIELD, U. S. Army.

SIR: Complaints are received at this department of arrests and searches in Maryland by troops from this District. You will please give directions to prevent such proceedings except for good cause and by your order and to have your own necessary orders for such arrests and searches executed by discreet officers from the native troops.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, July 13, 1861.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

SIR: I find it necessary to call the attention of the commander-in-chief to the condition of Fort McHenry considered merely as a place of confinement for arrested persons. Its limited dimensions make it insufficient for the secure possession of persons whose arrests and detention is indispensable to the public peace. I have discouraged arrests for the expression of political opinions or upon unimportant charges, and when they have been made I have promptly ordered a discharge unless important or positive testimony could be found against them; nevertheless arrests multiply to such extent as to endanger the safe-keeping of prisoners.

...

You will allow me to suggest that prisoners maybe divided into two classes-those who are detained for public safety and those who are to be tried for high crimes and misdemeanors. It is a delicate question whether persons held for trial can be even temporarily removed from the jurisdiction of the court, but is it not different with those detained for public safety alone and who are to be relieved when safety will permit? Of this class I judge the police commissioners to be. The charge against them is a negative one, an error of judgment or culpable inefficiency in the performance of official duty to which correct intention and incapacity would probably be a sufficient plea. (While I confidently assure the Government that their arrest prevented riot and that their detention is yet necessary I do not think that a trial for any positive crime can result in their conviction.) It admits of serious question whether Colonel Thomas, whose crime is that of piracy of the worst form and which was committed in the waters of the United States, perhaps in Maryland and perhaps in Virginia, must be detained and tried in this criminal district alone.

The same question arises in relation to the four prisoners arrested yesterday. They were armed and intended crime-piracy or treason-somewhere within the jurisdiction of the United States. Must they be held and tried in Baltimore alone? The condition of the public mind {p.587} may make it necessary that a trial to be impartial and just to the prisoners and the Government shall be postponed for some months. Must they be held here during the delay? Would not Fort Delaware considering the necessity of the case be sufficiently within the law of vicinage to justify their detention there? And if such-temporary imprisonment should not be within the law as it now exists ought not the attention of Congress to be called to this most important subject during the present session?

I submit these questions to the Government in view of the arrests that are likely to be made of persons who are engaged in commission of high crimes against the Government of the United States and the wholly insufficient accommodations that now exist at Fort McHenry for the safe-keeping of prisoners. It is proper that I should accompany this representation with an expression of my approval of the course pursued by the faithful commandant of the fort, Maj. W. W. Morris.

With great respect, your obedient servant,

N. P. BANKS, Major-General, Commanding Department of Annapolis.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, [Washington,] July 17, 1861.

Major-General BANKS, U. S. Army, Commanding Department of Annapolis, Baltimore, Md.

SIR: ... The general is aware of the difficulties attending the custody of prisoners at Fort McHenry but at present sees no remedy for them. He supposes the prisoners to have been of course disarmed and that force would be used to prevent their escape under all circumstances. A regiment of three-years’ men from Vermont will be ordered to report to you without delay.

I have the honor to be, sir, &c.,

E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

–––

Resolutions of the General Assembly of Maryland in relation to the arrest and imprisonment of Ross Winans, esq., &c.

BALTIMORE, MD., July 29, 1861.

Hon. JAMES A. PEARCE and Hon. ANTHONY KENNEDY, [Washington, D. C.]

GENTLEMEN: When I sent you the printed copies of the resolutions [of the General Assembly of Maryland] herewith inclosed I had not received the official copy which I now send to you with the concurrence of the president of the senate of Maryland.

Very respectfully,

E. G. KILBOURN, Speaker of the House of Delegates.

[Inclosure.]

Whereas, Ross Winans, a member of the house of delegates of Maryland from the city of Baltimore, on his way to his home from the discharge of his official duties on the 14th of May last was arbitrarily and illegally arrested on a public highway in the presence of the governor {p.588} of this State by an armed force under the orders of the Federal Government, and was forcibly imprisoned and held in custody thereafter at Annapolis and Fort McHenry without color of lawful process or right by the command and at the arbitrary will and pleasure of the President of the United States; and

Whereas, sundry other citizens of Maryland have been unlawfully dealt with in the same despotic and oppressive manner by the same usurped authority, and some of them have in fact been removed by force beyond the limits of the State of Maryland and the jurisdiction of her tribunals in utter violation of their rights as citizens and the rights of the State as a member of the Federal Union; and

Whereas, the unconstitutional and arbitrary proceedings of the Federal executive have not been confined to the violation of the personal rights and liberties of the citizens of Maryland but have been extended into every department of oppressive illegality, so that the property of no man is safe, the sanctity of no dwelling is respected and the sacredness of private correspondence no longer exists; and

Whereas, the senate and house of delegates of Maryland, recognizing the obligation of the State as far as in her lies to protect and defend her people against usurped and arbitrary power-however difficult the fulfillment of that high obligation may be rendered by disastrous circumstances-feel it due to her dignity and independence that history should not record the overthrow of public freedom for an instant within her borders without recording likewise the indignant expression of her resentment and remonstrance: Now therefore be it

Resolved, That the senate and house of delegates of Maryland in the name and on the behalf of the good people of the State do accordingly register this their earnest and unqualified protest against the oppressive and tyrannical assertion and exercise of military jurisdiction within the limits of Maryland over the persons and property of her citizens by the Government of the United States, and do solemnly declare the same to be subversive of the most sacred guarantees of the Constitution and in flagrant violation of the fundamental and most cherished principles of American free government.

Resolved further, That these resolutions be communicated by the president of the senate and the speaker of the house to Hon. James Alfred Pearce and Hon. Anthony Kennedy, Senators of Maryland in the Senate of the United States, with the request that they present the same to the Senate to be recorded among its proceedings in vindication of the right and in perpetual memory of the solemn remonstrance of this State against the manifold usurpations and oppressions of the Federal Government.*

By the house of delegates, June 20, 1861. Adopted by yeas and nays.

By order:

MILTON Y. KIDD, Chief Clerk.

By the senate, June 22, 1861. Adopted by yeas and nays.

By order:

WM. KILGOUR, Secretary of the Senate.

* Mr. Kennedy, a Senator from Maryland, presented the foregoing resolutions in the U. S. Senate in special session August 3, 1861. After some discussion, in which it was asserted by Senator Wilkinson that the resolutions were an insult to the Government, they were read, laid on the table and ordered to be printed.

{p.589}

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Port McHenry, Md., August 9, 1861.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army.

COLONEL: The man who is supposed to have shot one of the pickets south of the Relay House is in custody but there is no proof against him. The captain who made the examination has been here and the evidence which is purely circumstantial would not be sufficient I am satisfied to sustain an indictment by a grand jury. The soldier received a ball in his wrist and there was some apprehension that he would lose his hand. I have thought it best to hold the suspected person a few days longer with the hope-a faint one as I think-of procuring additional testimony. If I get none I propose to deliver him to the civil authorities unless the general-in-chief advises otherwise.

My own view of the proper course in regard to persons taken into custody by military force is not to hold them unless we have evidence sufficient to convict them before a court of competent jurisdiction. Whether in the condition of the judiciary in this portion of my department they should even with such evidence be surrendered for trial at this time is another question on which considerations of the public safety may have some influence. But if such evidence is absolutely wanting I suppose we should not hesitate either to release them or give them over to the prosecuting attorney to be disposed of as he may think proper.

I am, very respectfully, yours,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DIVISION OF THE POTOMAC, August 20, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Commanding, &c., Baltimore, Md.

GENERAL: ... Before many days some place will be designated where prisoners of this description can be sent for safe-keeping until everything is settled. When there is good reason to suppose that persons are giving aid and comfort to the enemy they should be arrested even when there is a want of positive proof of their guilt.

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

A. V. COLBURN, Assistant Adjutant-General.

–––

FORT MCHENRY, August 25, 1861.

Lieutenant-General SCOTT.

MY DEAR GENERAL: I inclose a letter addressed to me* by the Rev. A. Cleveland Coxe, rector of Grace Church in this city. He is a strong Union man and is therefore entitled to a respectful hearing. His letter is private, but it refers to you and therefore I take the liberty of sending it. There was an article in the Clipper (communicated) and another in the New York Herald (from a letter-writer or correspondent) complaining of my clemency in regard to the twenty-three State prisoners who passed through this city to Fort Monroe.

{p.590}

I exercised neither clemency nor rigor. I gave no orders except for their embarkation. They were under the charge and surveillance of Captain Way with instructions from the governor of Ohio to their treatment. They were on parole and allowed to visit some of their secession friends not-by me but by Captain Way. When they went to the boat 100 or 200 persons followed the carriages and some of them had the bad taste to shout for Jeff. Davis. There was no interference with them and a half dozen policemen kept order. I put a guard of twenty men under an officer in the boat to escort them to Fort Monroe as a measure of precaution. This is the whole story.

The deputy marshal told me this morning the city had not been so tranquil since April 19. I have adopted stringent measures to secure quiet but they are so ordered as to attract no notice. The regiments are well drilled to street-firing and in half an hour I can have 1,000 men in any part of the city; in forty minutes five times that number.

I beg you, general, not to change my regiments. They have a peculiar service to perform in case of an outbreak and every time a change is made I have to begin the work of preparation anew. The work on Federal Hill was commenced yesterday. The Seventeenth and Twenty-first Massachusetts and the Seventh Maine Regiments arrived to-day. I keep them all and send the Pennsylvania Fourth to you to-morrow; the Pennsylvania First from Annapolis shortly. I wish I could be allowed to keep it and send one of the Massachusetts regiments instead. Colonel Roberts, of the Pennsylvania First, was selected for his peculiar qualifications. He is just suited to Annapolis; very intelligent, gentlemanly and discreet. Everything is going on so well it is a pity to relieve him. I wrote to Major-General McClellan but he is I know very busy and I have not heard from him. I shall unless his former direction is changed send Colonel Roberts to Washington as soon as I can see those colonels who came in to-day and find a suitable substitute.

With the sincerest respect, I am, faithfully, yours,

JOHN A. DIX.

* shot found

–––

FORT MCHENRY, August 31, 1861.

Hon. M. BLAIR.

MY DEAR SIR: I have received the letter of the postmaster of Baltimore with your indorsement* in regard to the Exchange and other secessionist presses in that city. I presume you are not aware that an order for the suppression of these presses was made out in one of the Departments at Washington and in consequence of strong remonstrances from Union men in Baltimore was not issued. Under these circumstances it would not be proper for me to act without the authority of the Government. Any action by me without such authority would be improper for another reason that probably does not occur to you. The command of General McClellan has been extended over the State of Maryland. I am his subordinate and have corresponded with him on the subject. I cannot therefore act without his direction. But independently of this consideration I think a measure of so much gravity as the suppression of a newspaper by military force should carry with it the whole weight of the influence and authority of the Government especially when the publication is made almost under its eye.

{p.591}

There is no doubt that a majority of the Union men in Baltimore desire the suppression of all the opposition presses in the city but there are many-and among them some of the most discreet-who think differently. The city is now very quiet and under control though my force is smaller than I asked. There is a good deal of impatience among some of the Union men. They wish to have something done. The feeling is very much like that which prevailed in Washington before the movement against Manassas. It would not be difficult to get up a political Bull Run disaster in this State. If the Government will give me the number of regiments I ask and leave them with me when I have trained them to the special service they may have to perform I will respond for the quietude of this city. Should the time for action come I shall be ready. In the meantime preparation is going on. I am fortifying Federal Hill under a general plan of defense suggested by me and approved by General Scott. Two other works will be commenced the moment I can get an engineer from Washington. On the Eastern Shore there should be prompt and decisive action. I have urged it repeatedly and earnestly during the last three weeks.

Two well-disciplined regiments should march from Salisbury, the southern terminus of the Wilmington and Delaware Railroad, through Accomack and Northampton Counties and break up the rebel camps before they ripen into formidable organizations as they assuredly will if they are much longer undisturbed. No man is more strongly in favor of action than I am but I want it in the right place. We are in more danger on the Eastern Shore than in any other part of the State.

I am, dear sir, sincerely yours,

JOHN A. DIX.

* Not found.

[Indorsement.]

Referred to General McClellan. I believe the Exchange, Republican and South should be suppressed. They are open disunionists. The Sun is in sympathy but less diabolical.

M. B[LAIR].

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., September 4, 1861.

Maj. Gen. G. B. MCCLELLAN, Commanding Army of the Potomac.

GENERAL: No secession flag has to the knowledge of the police been exhibited in Baltimore for many weeks, except a small paper flag displayed by a child from an upper window. It was immediately removed by them. They have been instructed to arrest any person who makes a public demonstration by word or deed in favor of the Confederate Government and I have-prohibited the exhibition in shop windows of rebel envelopes and music. The informant of the Secretary of the Treasury does not appear to have mentioned special cases and you know how unreliable general statements are.

The old police when disbanded consisted of 416 persons. Twenty-seven are in our service. Several have been discharged. There are now about 350 left. The great part of them are obscure and inoffensive persons. Some of them are Union men. There are I am confident not over forty or fifty who would not take the oath of allegiance. There are some very mischievous, worthless fellows, but they are quiet. We only want a pretext for arresting them. They have up to this time been {p.592} paid by the city. Yesterday I addressed a letter to the mayor* ordering the payment to be discontinued. I think he will obey it. If he does not I shall arrest him and make a like order on the city comptroller who will obey.

I did not intend to trouble you with this matter until it was ended, but as I perceive by Colonel Marcy’s** letter that the condition of things has been represented to you by zealous persons as less favorable than it really is I have thought it best to mention now what I am doing. The city is perfectly quiet and perfectly under control by the police force alone. If there is an uprising on the Eastern Shore under the influence of the rebel organizations in Accomack and Northampton, or if the Confederate forces cross the Potomac we may have trouble. I shall endeavor to be ready for it whenever it comes. My regiments are for the most part new and I very much want a good brigadier-general. I have none as yet.

I think it very desirable that you should see the provost-marshal of this city. He is a very respectable citizen, is thoroughly acquainted with the condition of the city and I think can relieve you from much of the anxiety which it is natural you should feel from the representations of uneasy persons who I know have visited Washington and have communicated their apprehensions to members of the Government.

I had a very satisfactory interview with Secretary Seward to-day on these matters. Still I think it would be well for you to see the provost-marshal, and if you will name a day he will call on you in Washington.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

* See Dix to Brown, p. 644.

** Not found.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., September 5, 1861.

Maj. Gen. G. B. MCCLELLAN, Commanding Army of the Potomac.

GENERAL: Fort McHenry which has not sufficient space for the convenient accommodation of the number of men necessary to man its guns is crowded with prisoners. Beside our own criminals awaiting trial or under sentence we have eleven State prisoners. To this number six more will be added to-morrow. I do not think this a suitable place for them if we had ample room. It is too near the seat of war which may possibly be extended to us. It is also too near a great town in which there are multitudes who sympathize with them who are constantly applying for interviews and who must be admitted with the hazard of becoming the media of improper communications, or who go away with the feeling that they have been harshly treated because they have been denied access to their friends.

It is very desirable that an end should be put to these dangers on the one hand and annoyances on the other. If as is supposed Fort Lafayette is crowded may they not he provided for at Fort Delaware? There are several prisoners here who are under indictment. The Government decided that they should not be sent away. I concur in the correctness of the reasoning, but is there any impropriety if their safety requires it in taking them temporarily beyond the jurisdiction of the court by which they must be tried to be remanded when the court is ready for their trial? I confess I do not see that any principle {p.593} is violated. I certainly do not think them perfectly safe here considering the population by which they are surrounded and the opportunities for evading the vigilance of their guards.

...

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

[Indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, September 5, 1861.

Respectfully referred to the general commanding with a recommendation #hat the seventeen prisoners referred to by General Dix be transferred to some other place for safe-keeping; and I beg to repeat my suggestion that some other suitable place be selected for keeping prisoners of war that may be captured in future. For present purposes it seems to me that Fort Independence, Boston Harbor, or Fort Adams, Newport, might suffice.

GEO. B. MCCLELLAN, Major-General, U. S. Army.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., September 5, 1861.

Maj. Gen. G. B. MCCLELLAN, Commanding Army of the Potomac.

GENERAL: I have received a communication from the mayor * of Baltimore protesting against my order, but informing me that he shall offer no resistance to it and that he will “give public notice to the officers and men of-the city police that no further payments can be expected by them.”

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, yours,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

* Not found.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., September 8, 1861.

Maj. Gen. G. B. MCCLELLAN, Commanding Army of the Potomac.

GENERAL: I came to the city from Fort McHenry to-day to examine a quantity of articles, letters, &c., intended for the Confederate States, captured last evening by the police. Two parties of individuals were also taken with them.

...

I have all these persons in custody; what shall be done with them? I must again call your attention to the crowded state of Fort McHenry. Every room is full and we had about fifty prisoners last night in tents on the parade ground with hardly room left for the guard to parade. I understand that Fort Delaware could very promptly and economically be fitted up for 200 prisoners by simply flooring the casemates.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

{p.594}

[Indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, September 9, 1861.

Respectfully referred to the general-in-chief with the request that some place be immediately designated for the safe-keeping of the prisoners now at Baltimore.

GEO. B. MCCLELLAN, Major-General, U. S. Army.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., September 9, 1861.

Hon. GEORGE WILLIAM BROWN, Mayor of the City of Baltimore.

SIR: Your letter of the 5th instant* was duly received. I cannot without acquiescing in the violation of a principle assent to the payment of an arrearage to the members of the old city police as suggested in the last paragraph of your letter. It was the intention of my letter to prohibit any payment to them subsequently to the day on which it was written. You will please therefore to consider this as the further order referred to by you.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

* Not found.

–––

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, September 10, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, U. S. Army, Commanding, &c., Fort McHenry, Baltimore, Md.

SIR: Your letters of the 5th and 8th instant to Major-General McClellan on the subject of the prisoners confined in Fort McHenry have been referred to the general-in-chief who directs me to reply as follows: You will please send under a sufficient guard all the political prisoners and prisoners of war now at Fort McHenry except those indicted but including Marshal Kane by an inland route to New York, preferably by the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal. Some of the principal men among them will be sent to Fort Lafayette and delivered to Lieut. Col. Martin Burke; the remainder will be delivered to Col. Loomis, commanding at Governor’s Island. Directions will be sent from this office to those officers to receive them. ...

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

E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., September 12, 1861.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General, Washington, D. C.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that the requirements of your letter of the 10th instant have been carried out as follows:

Thirty political prisoners left Fort McHenry this day for Forts Columbus and Lafayette via the Delaware and Chesapeake Canal and Camden and Amboy Railroad under a guard of eighteen enlisted men {p.595} from the Twenty-first Regiment Indiana Volunteers, commanded by Capt. James Grimsley. Four prisoners are ordered to Fort Lafayette, viz: George P. Kane, late marshal of police of Baltimore City; Robert Drane, citizen of Fairfax County, Va.; Arthur Dawson, citizen of Fairfax County, Va.; Benjamin Eggleston, citizen of Washington, D. C. The other twenty-six have been sent to Fort Columbus. The only person of note among them is Col. John Pegram.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

BALTIMORE, September 15, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

DEAR GOVERNOR: I thank you in the name of every truly loyal man in Baltimore and in my own poor name too for your arrest of the traitors whom you have sent to Fortress Monroe. A great and a good work has been done. Rebellion has received a staggering blow. I hope General Banks will take care that the Legislature shall not sit at all. There are thin-skinned Union men enough who will seek to get a quorum for the sake of the $4 a day. General Kimmel is one of them. He told me a day or two ago he wanted to have a chance to pass his foolish resolutions. I bade him take up his musket rather and go to the field.

The arrest of W. Wilkins Glenn,* the proprietor of the Exchange, has given intense satisfaction. Beale Richardson and his writing editor Joice, of the Republican, are very violent and would grace the Tortugas. If the Exchange should go on a Doctor Palmer and a William H. Carpenter are the ostensible editors, and both write with bitterness. They too would do well at Tortugas. A Mr. Hodges here told me last evening that any amount of money could be raised to continue the Exchange, but, said he, “What’s the use? We can’t get it through the mails.” I still think they will try to keep it up just for a vent of their spleen and sinister designs. Our provost-marshal, Mr. Dodge, whom I have just left, is anxious to have it bought up by the Union men but that’s impossible. It is in debt some $40,000 and would be worth nothing to the Union cause because all its supporters are rebels who would instantly withdraw. My own judgment is that it should be suppressed out and out if it is continued. The South [newspaper] has stopped after trying to get up a Polignac revolution. May’s arrest* has caused infinite pleasure because of his hypocrisy and malignancy.

The effect of these arrests must determine very rapidly the status of the floating population who are ever on the watch for the stronger side. I have already heard of cases in our favor. We are determined to prevent any rebel voting if he will not take the oath of allegiance. It is to be done by a system of challenging. The new mayor has already surrendered the pistols retained by the old police and evinces a readiness to co-operate with the Federal authorities. His name is Blackburn. It is intimated that General Howard has taken the hint and will not accept the rebel nomination for Governor. If he does he should be sent at once to Fortress Monroe, and so too of Jarrett, the rebel nominee for comptroller. I hope the Government will not release a single one of these prisoners let the circumstances be what they may. The effect upon the public mind depends largely upon firmness at this juncture.

Faithfully, yours,

W. G. SNETHEN.

* See Vol. II, this series, for cases of Glenn and May.

{p.596}

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF VIRGINIA, Fort Monroe, September 15, 1861.

Hon. SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.

SIR: I received yesterday from Major-General Dix a letter accompanying fifteen prisoners arrested in Baltimore of which the following is an extract:

The direction of the Secretary of War is to keep them in close custody, suffering no one to communicate with them, and to convey them at once to Fortress Monroe there to remain in close custody until they shall be forwarded to their ultimate destination.

The prisoners Brown, May, Winans and others were landed at this post yesterday afternoon and have been placed in the casemates where they are strongly guarded. I have no other instructions or communications from the Government in regard to these prisoners than those contained in the above extract from a letter addressed to General Dix. Those instructions so far as the treatment of the prisoners while here is concerned may be susceptible of two constructions. Is it the intention of the Government that the prisoners shall neither receive nor send letters to their families and friends of a purely domestic and private character to be ascertained by inspection?

The crowded state of this fortress which from the great number of stores and supplies within it has obliged me to place these prisoners in very close quarters where they cannot obtain even the necessary conveniences of health and must suffer seriously for the want of air and ventilation, and to detail a strong guard for their safe-keeping which with the reduced force now at my disposal has necessarily interfered with other important duties of the men.

I would suggest that this fortress from its position and the sympathies that surround it is neither so secure nor commodious a place for the safe-keeping of these prisoners as points farther north. At the Rip Raps they could not be accommodated from the great number of prisoners waiting there for conveyance to the Tortugas.

I would be pleased to receive as soon as possible from the Government instructions in regard to these prisoners.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN E. WOOL, Major. General.

[First indorsement.]

WAR DEPARTMENT, September 16, 1861.

Will the Secretary of State be good enough to read the within and inform me of his views?

SIMON CAMERON.

[Second indorsement.]

I advise that these prisoners be sent to Fort Lafayette or Fort Hamilton as General Scott may designate; that they be allowed to receive no visitors nor to communicate on any other than purely personal or domestic matters by letters to be inspected.

W. H. S[EWARD].

[Third indorsement.]

Will General Scott please designate the fort?

SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.

{p.597}

–––

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, September 18, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN E. WOOL, U. S. Army, Commanding, &c., Fort Monroe, Va.

SIR: The general-in-chief directs that you send by the first suitable conveyance to Fort Lafayette, N. Y., the political prisoners mentioned in your letter to the Secretary of War of the 15th instant.

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

E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

–––

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, September 18, 1861.

Lieut. Col. MARTIN BURKE, U. S. ARMY, Commanding, &c., Fort-Hamilton, N. Y.

SIR: The general-in-chief directs me to say that orders have been sent to Major-General Wool to transfer from Fort Monroe by the first suitable conveyance Hon. Henry May, Messrs. Winans, Brown and twelve other political prisoners arrested in Baltimore to Fort Lafayette. You will please receive and hold them in custody. They will be allowed to receive no visitors, and only to communicate on purely personal or domestic matters by letters to be inspected.

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

E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., September 20, 1861.

Captain BRAGG, Second Regiment Maryland Volunteers.

SIR: I do not wish any searches made in private dwellings by the military. I prefer it should be done by the police. You have very properly reported to me the case of Doctor Henkle and I shall put it in the hands of the provost-marshal in Baltimore. I do not wish any persons to be stopped who have shotguns and who are evidently going on sporting excursions. They should not be detained or interfered with in any way. Your duty is to examine vehicles passing out of the city of Baltimore and suspected of having concealed arms or goods destined to the disloyal States.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

PRIVATE.]

BALTIMORE, September 23, 1861.

Hon. REVERDY JOHNSON.

MY DEAR JOHNSON: My belief is that the peace convention is defunct. Still I have taken measures to have them watched and will inform you promptly of any movement by them.

...

Sincerely yours,

WM. PRICE.

{p.598}

–––

299 F STREET, Washington, September 24, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: Since the arrest of William G. Harrison, of Baltimore, a member of the Legislature of Maryland, I have had occasion to refer to a letter from him in reply to one of mine inquiring why he had not presented a petition which I had sent to him in relation to the capture of M. C. Causten by an armed band from Virginia.

The reason for not presenting my memorial that “the Federal relations of the State were such that I did not present it” of course made me very indignant and I did not reply to him, as I could not in a temperate style for we had been schoolmates nearly fifty years ago. Now I consider it my duty to transmit his note and my original petition to you, as in my humble opinion it shows his animus in relation to the Federal Government. More than forty years since I took an oath to support the Constitution of the United States and I have repeated it on many occasions and will keep it.

Now, my dear sir, on behalf of thousands of distressed individuals who have relatives and friends prisoners to the Confederates as they call themselves I pray you to adopt some course by which they may return to their homes. The late accounts from the South state the Union prisoners are being sent to New Orleans and Charleston where of course nearly half of them may be carried off by the yellow fever.

With great respect, I have the honor to remain, your obedient servant,

MCCLINTOCK YOUNG.

P. S.-As I am a perfect stranger to you I would merely state that I was for many years chief clerk of the Treasury Department and often performed the duties of the head of the Department by appointments of Presidents Jackson, Van Buren, Tyler, Polk and Taylor.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

BALTIMORE, July 11, 1861.

MCC. YOUNG, Esq., Washington.

MY DEAR SIR: In reply to your request under date 5th instant I now return to you the memorial sent me to present. The Federal relations of the State were such that I did not present it.

Very truly,

WM. G. HARRISON.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

WASHINGTON CITY, June 9, 1861.

THE HONORABLE THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF MARYLAND:

The petition of the undersigned, a citizen of the State of Maryland residing in the city of Washington, respectfully showeth that on Monday last an armed body of men from Virginia invaded the State of Maryland near Seneca, in Montgomery County, and by force arrested and carried into Virginia Manuel C. Causten (brother-in-law of your petitioner), who was on a visit to his wife. Said Causten is a private in a volunteer mounted company of this city and was not on any military duty when he was kidnaped and carried out of the State by armed men. Rumor states that he was taken to Manassas Junction and thence to Richmond, but to this date none of his family or friends are aware of what has become of him.

{p.599}

Now your petitioner prays that your honorable body may inquire into the facts relating to this invasion and desecration of the soil of my native State and demand proper reparation from the State of Virginia and the immediate release of said Causten.

And your petitioner will ever pray, &c.,

MCCLINTOCK YOUNG.

–––

PRIVATE.]

BALTIMORE, September 25, 1861.

REVERDY JOHNSON, Esq.

MY DEAR JOHNSON: ... In regard to the peace convention I still think it defunct; but it will be well not to be thrown off our guard and if there should be any indications of its revival I shall be informed of it. From present appearances there will be no opposition to the Union tickets either in this city or county. Much will depend, however, upon the turn of events. If the rebels should lick us or obtain any decided advantage over us the rebel sentiment here will revive. Otherwise it will remain cowed as it is now. I do not think it would be wise to cease making arrests entirely. Some evidence that the power is with the Government should be kept before the eyes of the discontented few. It has a most salutary effect.

Yours, truly,

WM. PRICE.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., October 5, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: ... I have become somewhat suspicious of charges against individuals unless they are well supported by statements from reliable sources. I arrested in an interior county and brought to this city two men charged with open acts of hostility to the Government on testimony vouched by the U. S. marshal, and yet they turned out to be two of the most consistent and active Union men in the neighborhood.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., October 10, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have carefully examined the papers in the case of Dr. A. C. Robinson and have some doubt about the expediency of allowing him to return to Baltimore until after the fall election-say the 10th of November. He has been a very violent secessionist, and even though he should take the oath of allegiance and abstain from any act of hostility to the Government he would not consider himself precluded from a participation in the proceedings of his party in support of the peace ticket. He is not a dangerous man like Wallis but I would rather have him away from Baltimore for the next three weeks at least.

It looks very much as though we should carry our ticket without any organized opposition. I am confident at all events that Maryland will be a Union State in November. Until then I think it would be wise to let those who have been active against the Government and have {p.600} influence remain out of the State if they are not in it now. It is understood that Doctor Robinson is in Richmond at this time though he may be nearer home. If you will allow me to suggest a course in regard to his friends seeking his release it would be not to discourage them but to hold out the expectation that he will be permitted to return shortly on taking the oath of allegiance, and it ought not to be less than the one prescribed by Congress.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Fort McHenry, Baltimore:

The act of Congress requiring an oath of allegiance was approved the 31st of August last.

W. H. SEWARD.

–––

WASHINGTON, October 10, 1861.

The Honorable SECRETARY OF STATE.

DEAR SIR: For months past there has been a regular mail to and from Virginia via the Great Mills Post-Office. This office is situated about six miles from the Potomac River in Saint Mary’s County, Md., and eighty-three miles from this city. The plan was to inclose all correspondence intended for Virginia (under cover) to some well-known secessionist residing at the Great Mills Post-Office and by these parties forwarded to Virginia. On the 5th instant I applied to the honorable Secretary of the Navy and was promptly furnished with a small steamer and a number of men sufficient to carry out my intentions. We proceeded to the locality mentioned above and seized all the mail matter in said office, also one unopened mail bag. On examination I find a large number of letters addressed to parties in Virginia and other parts of the South, also letters coming from Virginia to parties in Baltimore, Washington, Philadelphia, &c., the most important of which accompany the report.

The postmaster at Great Mills seems to have made his office a repository or depot for this contraband correspondence although he professes to be a very strong Union man. We arrested one John S. Travis, a resident of the above-named locality, and brought him a prisoner to this city. Travis is charged with carrying the mails to and from the Great Mills Post-Office into Virginia. This morning I received a telegram from Major-General Dix, at Fort McHenry, stating that the provost-marshal of Baltimore would furnish me with an abundance of proof against Travis. I shall detain him until such proof arrives. The post-offices at Leonardtown and Ridge Road I think should be immediately seized. I have positive information that an extensive Southern correspondence is now being carried on through these offices. The honorable Assistant Secretary of the Navy rendered very prompt and valuable assistance in the above matter.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

L. C. BAKER.

{p.601}

–––

POST-OFFICE DEPARTMENT, October 16, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

MY DEAR SIR: I inclose the letter of C. E. Detmold, esq., to L. J. Brengle, esq., of Frederick, Md., containing information valuable to the Government. ... I shall be obliged to you to have the letter returned after use has been made of it to me.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. KASSON, First Assistant Postmaster-General.

[Inclosure.]

NEW YORK, October 11, 1861.

L. J. BRENGLE, Esq.

MY DEAR SIR: The result of the election in Baltimore proves the wisdom of the action of the Government in having the prominent traitors arrested. Even the secessionists in Western Maryland are reconciled and even approve it for they dread civil war within the State.

At the same time, however, I learn from a very reliable source in Allegany County that a secret movement is on foot by the peace party, i.e., secessionists in disguise to nominate an opposition ticket; and for the purpose of defeating the Union ticket the commissioners, nearly all secessionists, have lately had a meeting and appointed the rankest secessionists as judges of election. I mention the name of one so appointed for Cumberland, W. O. Sprigg, well known as a rabid secessionist, having a son in the rebel army. Amongst the opponents of the Government the foremost in Allegany County are Judge Perry and Doctor Fitzpatrick. The former appointed young Brien, now an officer in the rebel ranks, foreman of the grand jury and permitted him to come into court with a large secession badge on his breast. I mention this fact as a glaring instance of his proclivities. He and his confederates Doctor Fitzpatrick, W. O. Sprigg (who I believe has also a son in the rebel ranks) and if I mistake not Devecmon, the lawyer, are the head and front of the secret movement now going on. They are in constant communication with the rebels in Virginia and are doing all the mischief they can. Now it seems to me these people should for a while be placed where they can do no harm. If the Government could be made aware of the state of things I think they should give these gentlemen free quarters at Fort McHenry or Fort Lafayette from now until after the election. The quiet and safety of the State of Maryland would be promoted by such a proceeding and an election result obtained which could not but have a most beneficial effect upon the whole country.

Cannot you, my dear sir, place this information before the Government in such manner as to command their attention? I am sure that any suggestions coming from you would receive the promptest consideration.

After much impatience the public here is becoming reconciled to the inaction of the Union forces along the line of the Potomac. A large naval expedition is preparing which is nearly ready and destined in all probability to take Mobile or New Orleans. About the same time an advance movement will probably be made by the army at and near Washington, and most devoutly do I hope and pray that both may be completely successful. The best spirit prevails here. The Government can have whatever they ask for. No sacrifice or effort is too great not to be made promptly and cheerfully. All we ask is that the Government shall respond with energy to the wishes of the people.

{p.602}

A great blow must be struck before the season advances so far as to compel the army to go into winter quarters.

The canal is doing considerable business, both for Georgetown and Alexandria and for Baltimore.

Always, my dear sir, with sincere regard, yours, truly,

C. E. DETMOLD.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 17, 1861.

Maj. Gen. N. P. BANKS, Darnestown, Md.

GENERAL: This Department has reliable information that William O. Sprigg, Judge Perry, Doctor Fitzpatrick and perhaps Devecmon, a lawyer, all of Cumberland, Allegany County, Md., are disloyal in their sentiments and are in constant communication with the rebels in Virginia. The expediency of arresting one or more of these persons and of sending them to Fort McHenry is accordingly submitted to your consideration.

I am, general, your very obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

ROUSE’S POINT, N. Y., October 17, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD.

DEAR SIR: I have received your second order to retain the trunks* in my possession and fully believe your decision to retain them a correct one.

Another feature of this rebel business I wish to bring to your notice. I have just been in Montreal and am astonished to find so large a number of secessionists. Nearly or quite every Southern State is there represented, and in the dining halls and parlors of different hotels secession is very earnestly defended by them. I should think there were from thirty to fifty of this class in Montreal, and I am told there are quite as many if not more in Quebec, any one of whom would be arrested if found on this side of the line.

Funds to quite an extent are being forwarded by express to them from the South. Would it not be well through our consul or otherwise to ascertain the names of those rebels and seize their funds? I am confident a large amount is thus being drawn from the South and invested in Canada or sent to England. A thousand dollars in gold, besides drafts, &c., to quite an amount passed through for one of the owners of those trunks but a few days since. If it be desired I can obtain the assistance of a most reliable man for a short time to ascertain the names and residence of Southerners now in Canada.

Most respectfully yours,

H. DUNN.

* Of J. C. Brune, a member of the Maryland Legislature.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., October 18, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to inclose a list* of prisoners brought to Fort McHenry within the last three days. ... It is desirable that {p.603} they should be sent away from Fort McHenry to some place of security more distant from their friends who are constantly seeking access to them.

I am, very respectfully,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

* Omitted.

–––

U. S. CONSULATE-GENERAL, BRITISH NORTH AMERICAN PROVINCES, Montreal, October 22, 1861.

FREDERICK W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary of State.

DEAR SIR: Mr. Brune, a member of the Maryland Legislature, was in my office yesterday. He admits that he fled from Maryland under a feigned name, is a secessionist, &c., but is anxious to obtain his trunk which is detained at Rouse’s Point. He asserts there was nothing in the trunk that can afford any evidence for or against him and is only anxious to obtain [it] on account of his wardrobe. He has friends here who are excellent Union men, and at their request I address this note asking that the trunk may be given up unless there are reasons for detaining it.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. R. GIDDINGS.

–––

FORT MCHENRY, October 23, 1861.

Hon. SIMON CAMERON and Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD:

Fort McHenry is very small and is filled up by the garrison. We have not room for the accommodation of prisoners or the means of providing for their comfort. Seven prisoners of war from General Banks’ column and four State prisoners engaged in secreting a balloon in Delaware came in last night. We have now over twenty confined in one room and cell.

JOHN A. DIX.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., October 28, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I inclose a pamphlet containing an address by three peace nominees of Harford County. It is very impudent, but is their language such as to warrant their arrest?

I submit the question to you, and am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major. General.

[Inclosure.]

To THE PEOPLE OF HARFORD:

We have thought it best to address you explaining frankly the convictions that influence and the principles that govern us in the present crisis; principles we believe to be sound and convictions we know to be honest. Intending to adhere to them and willing to be judged by them we do not hesitate to submit our opinions unreservedly for your censure or approval.

{p.604}

Maryland has never recognized secession as a constitutional right or constitutional remedy. The Constitution of the United States is incorporated with and made part of the organic law of the State. Her Legislature has no power to change that fundamental law, and an act of secession if passed would be a nullity.

Maryland has been always true to the Union as a fosterer and assurance of national dignity, strength and prosperity. When Massachusetts proclaimed the admission of Texas as just cause for secession; when those who profess now to be its most loyal defenders reviled it as a covenant with hell and were willing to let it slide; when unconstitutional legislation in other States struck at vital interests here she never faltered in her faith; never looked for redress beyond the constitutional tribunals nor appealed to a higher law than the Constitution. In this time of peril and distress it is her right to demand the strict observance in peace or war of every constitutional provision, the recognition of all rights secured by those provisions and of all reserved to her as a sovereign State when she entered into the Federal compact.

The States are sovereign except as to those attributes they agreed to confer upon their appointed representative, the General Government. As such they achieved the Revolution. Combining their several resources for a common end they fought for and established the great American principle that governments are formed for the benefit of the people and all authority emanates from the people. The rights of each were as perfect and ample as the rights of all. They derived none from the Constitution but formed it, their creature, and through it the Union, not to acquire more but as the chosen means of securing and defending what each already possessed.

Their continued sovereignty is essential to the theory and success of our Government; but for its recognition the Constitution would never have been adopted. When opposed by those who feared probable aggression it was declared by Mr. Hamilton, its ablest advocate, that “it may be safely received as an axiom in our political system that the State governments will in all possible contingencies afford complete security against invasion of the public liberty by the national authority.” What mockery, if the States be as the President asserts mere municipal divisions! How ridiculous in his own Illinois to emblazon on her shield as the essence of her political faith the motto “State Sovereignty, National Union!”

The General Government is in no true sense of the term sovereign. It is not the source but the recipient of delegated powers. Within its prescribed sphere it is made paramount; beyond that powerless and non-existent. Its officials are the servants not the masters of the people; agents with limited authority and with none beyond the written grant; to exceed which is usurpation in them and a wrong against every State and every citizen. The submission of many States or individuals may prevent redress but cannot justify the transgression nor impair the rights of those who maintain the fundamental law.

If any administration arrogates to itself powers not delegated or without law harasses or oppresses the humblest of her citizens it is the duty of the State to hold up the Constitution, and in its name and in behalf of civil liberty and republican institutions to declare the usurpation and invoke its vindication. A free sovereign State she entered the Union through the Constitution she adopted. To this only she assented. She cannot be coerced into a new Constitution or a different Union by executive interpolation. When the compact is by force or fraud abrogated and the Union disrupted she stands freed from her compact, free to choose and establish a new national position.

{p.605}

Whether that point is reached it is useless to discuss. Neither the people of Maryland nor its government have taken any steps toward changing their national relations. As yet she is within the Constitution, fulfilling its requirements and asking only the privilege it professes to guarantee. Her Governor is loyal to the utmost; the Legislature has declared that it would not and could not pass an ordinance of secession and has done nothing in contravention of the Constitution or any known law. It has protested against what it deemed the arbitrary, illegal and dangerous policy of the Administration, and if in error it was responsible only to the people of Maryland and not amenable to reproof or punishment by the General Government.

Within our borders the Federal courts have always been open, their process unobstructed, their orders never resisted (but by Federal officials). Through their ordinary action every law of Congress could be enforced and every offense known to the code punished.

Yet Maryland by deliberate acts of the Administration has been outlawed; her government subverted-her laws disregarded and defied; her officers displaced; her municipal and police systems overthrown; her property seized, and force under the name of martial law has superseded the civil power. Her citizens are arrested without warrant; the security of their papers and effects violated; their right to keep and bear arms infringed, and freedom of speech and of the press not only abridged but suppressed.

Every man knows that these things are done in our midst; no honest man can deny that they are palpable breaches of the Constitution for no man can point to one line in that Constitution or to any law that authorizes, justifies or excuses them. Acts not so sanctioned are encroachments upon the reserved rights of the States and the people, and if prohibited are revolutionary. When the Government is not controlled by the paramount law, when it can do and does what that law does not permit or forbids it is unrestrained and absolute.

Wherever the law is superior to the ruler civil liberty exists; when the ruler is superior to the law; where at his discretion he can supersede, suspend or disobey it he is by whatever name he may be called despotic.

Believing that powers fatal to her rights as a State and destructive of the liberty of her citizens are exercised by those administering the General Government Maryland asks whence they are derived; asks to be shown the grant, and she is told that South Carolina has-seceded and the cotton States are in rebellion.

But Maryland has not seceded, and unless its repudiation by South Carolina destroyed the Constitution our rights under it are not lost; if it is destroyed the Government, its creature, has ceased to exist.

We have next the much-abused maxim inter arma silent leges (in war the laws are silent), but we reply the Constitution was made for peace and for war and its voice is too potent to be drowned in the din of arms.

But “the Government must be maintained, the Constitution and the Union must be preserved.” We answer to violate the Constitution in order to maintain it is a contradiction in terms-without it there is neither Union nor Government, which can exist only with it.

The President’s oath is to maintain the Constitution not to preserve the Union in some other mode. We ask you, fellow-citizens, have you ever had or heard from the adherents of the Administration-the mis-called Union party-any other justification attempted? Or this eked out with grandiloquent platitudes about the stars and stripes, our flag and the eagle?

{p.606}

There is one more-the supreme law of necessity! Necessity for what and whence? If the necessity has been produced by the Administration instead of palliation it is but aggravation of its offenses. What then is this necessity? We are told that the seceding States have repudiated the Constitution and deserted the Union; they must be coerced to return to the one and to submit to the other. The Constitution gives no power to coerce a State; the power is indispensable, therefore we must usurp it.

In the Convention that framed the Constitution it was proposed to give the power to call forth the force of the Union against any member of the Union failing to fulfill its duty under the articles thereof. Mr. Madison said:

The more he reflected on the use of force the more he doubted the practicability, the justice and efficacy of it when applied to people collectively and not individually. An union of the States containing such an ingredient seemed to provide for its own destruction. The use of force against a State would look more like a declaration of war than an infliction of punishment, and would probably be considered by the party attacked as a dissolution of all previous compacts by which it might be bound. Any government for the United States formed on the supposed practicability of using force against the unconstitutional proceedings of the States would prove as visionary and fallacious as the government of Congress.

Mr. Hamilton said:

How can this force be exerted against the States collectively? It is impossible. It amounts to a war between the parties. Foreign powers will not be idle spectators. They will interpose; the confusion will increase, and a dissolution of the Union will ensue.

The power was not given.

In the war of 1812 Massachusetts refused to furnish her quota of troops and was not coerced. Recently Ohio refused to deliver up a fugitive from justice; the Federal courts decided that she was bound to do so by the Constitution but no department of the General Government had the right to coerce the State.

The necessity then does not grow out of the Constitution but is something exterior and superior to it, suspending its vitality, annulling alike its guarantees and its prohibitions and threatening its annihilation.

It involves too another extra-constitutional necessity-a war-a civil war, the consequences of which the Representative of this Congressional district so truthfully sketched in his speech* of February last which you have all read and most of you approved; a war that has already-paralyzed the trade, commerce, manufactures and finances of the country-has imposed an onerous tax on property whose revenues it has destroyed-that is building up at the rate of more than $1,000,000 a day a public debt that will be an incubus on the people for ages, if not forever; that has reduced the ordinary revenues of the country to one-fourth the ordinary expenditures; that will bankrupt our State as it has annulled the rights of her citizens and abolished her sovereignty; that has covered the land with ruin, with mourning and desolation.

What has it accomplished in its half year’s duration but loss of life and treasure and national honor? What can it effect but additional evil?

The President has told us that it cannot settle the issues that divided the North and the South. His more conservative adherents declare it is not waged for conquest or subjugation, whilst the abolition wing of his party frankly declares that its motive and its inevitable consequence is to emancipate the slave and destroy the South.

{p.607}

Whatever the opinion elsewhere six months ago except a few isolated Republicans the citizens of Maryland almost to a man of every party denounced the coercive policy and a coercive war as fatal to the continuance or the restoration of the Union, and none more earnestly or persistently than the members and leaders of the Union party. We adhere to that opinion still. What reason have they found for renouncing a truth so indisputable?

But we are asked what good can the peace party do if they control the State? They cannot stop the war. We can and will at least refuse to aid in dragging Maryland into the slaughter-house. We can and will refuse at the bidding of the Administration to impose a war debt on her depleted treasury, to tax her citizens or to draft them for the battlefield. We can and will refuse to acknowledge that the Constitution is intermittent-performing or ceasing its functions at the will of the Executive. We can and will refuse to renounce the rights of our citizens or the sovereignty of the State, and will not by assenting to the exercise of powers not conferred by the Constitution admit that it is not supreme in war as well as in peace.

Our opponents on the other hand stand pledged to sustain the Government in its fatal coercive policy; in its most disastrous civil war; in its invasions of the Constitution; in its outrages on the rights of the citizens, and its negation of the rights of the State; in its doctrine of necessity well called the tyrant’s plea that justifies equally the Austrian dungeon, the Siberian wilds and the casemates of Fort Lafayette, and knows no limit but an arbitrary will. They must uphold the necessary inventions of martial law, of political prisoners, of verbal treason, of permits to cross the Chesapeake or the Atlantic; they must furnish men and money, must levy taxes and impress citizens at the dictate of the Government whose right to coerce they admit and whose arms they cannot resist. For them there is no middle ground or halting place. They stultify themselves if they justify the demands of the Government and disobey them.

But they do not mean to disobey. They were eloquent and earnest in decrying coercion and war-demonstrating their folly and crime; predicting the horrors that have come to pass-until the Administration determined to coerce, and then in prudent blindness they turn from the fulfillment of their own prophecy; in submissive silence ignore the wrongs of their fellow-citizens or meekly declare that the Government is lenient because it has not done all the harm it might; it has let some innocent men escape from oppression it had no right to inflict. They shout loudly now perhaps to drown the still, small voice-the new watchword, war! to the last dollar and the last man.

They have already voted millions of dollars and half a million of men; already imposed their taxes, and the process must go on until the Government deigns to declare that it has its fill of war, the law of necessity is gratified and the Constitution may creep out into the sun. No State has yet determined to sustain the Government without creating a war debt.

Let us heed the warning of Kentucky and Missouri. Kentucky asserted absolute neutrality and just as long as her Governor and Legislature united to maintain it it was recognized by the Administration. A new Legislature determined not only to preserve this position (for which it was elected) but to strengthen it by supporting the Government also. At the word the Federal troops seized Paducah; the Confederates occupied Columbus; the Legislature rushed into the inevitable debt of two millions, and the soil of neutral Kentucky trembles {p.608} beneath the tramp of hostile armies. The convention of Missouri made for her a similar history and her fields are drenched with the blood of her sons!

We have addressed you thus freely in plain words that there may be no misunderstanding. We have not stooped to pick the delicate phrases of a new-fangled loyalty.

We do not counsel treasonable acts or combinations; we do not advise violence in conduct or unkindness in feeling; we abet no resistance to the law or its constituted authorities. But we think and say that we should not consult our fears rather than our consciences; we should not volunteer our substance to the taxgatherer or our hands to the fetters. If we are doomed let us not be suicides. Whilst we are permitted to speak let us speak boldly for the truth and justice and civil liberty; whilst we are permitted to vote let us declare by our ballots that we cling to State rights as the only barrier to oppression and that we know no necessity superior to the Constitution.

Let us continue to advise as the Union party did in February last “that if it be found we cannot live together in harmony under the Constitution our fathers framed let us as brethren agree to part in peace,” and to disclaim indignantly the doctrine of coercion by arms.

If we cannot command let us at least invoke the blessings of peace-peace to a distracted land which partisan sectionalism has summoned to hatred and slaughter! Peace for the sake of those republican institutions which our forefathers left us and which are sinking fast in the red abyss of civil war! Peace for the sake of palsied labor and idle trade! Peace for our good old State, distracted and prostrate, doomed else to be the prize as she is daily more and more the victim of war!

H. D. FARNANDIS. JOSHUA WILSON. WM. B. STEPHENSON.

* Foot-note in pamphlet, embodying an extract from Congressman Webster’s speech on coercion, is omitted as unimportant.

–––

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, Washington, October 29, 1861.

Maj. Gen. N. P. BANKS, Commanding Division, Muddy Branch, Md.

GENERAL: There is an apprehension among Union citizens in many parts of Maryland of an attempt at interference with their rights of suffrage by disunion citizens on the occasion of the election to take place on the 6th of November next.

In order to prevent this the major-general commanding directs that you send detachments of a sufficient number of men to the different points in your vicinity where the elections are to be held to protect the Union voters and to see that no disunionists are allowed to intimidate them or in any way to interfere with their rights.

He also desires you to arrest and hold in confinement till after the election all disunionists who are known to have returned from Virginia recently and who show themselves at the polls, and to guard effectually against any invasion of the peace and order of the election. For the purpose of carrying out these instructions you are authorized to suspend the habeas corpus. General Stone has received similar instructions to these. You will please confer with him as to the particular points that each shall take the control of.

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

R. B. MARCY, Chief of Staff.

{p.609}

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., November 1, 1861.

DANIEL ENGEL and WILLIAM ECKER, Inspectors of Election, New Windsor.

GENTLEMEN: I have received your letter of the 29th ultimo asking me to issue a proclamation authorizing you to administer to all persons of doubtful loyalty who offer their votes at the approaching election an oath to support the Constitution of the United States. If I had the power I would most cheerfully do so for no one who is false to the Government ought to be allowed to vote. But the constitution and laws of Maryland provide for the exercise of the elective franchise by regulations with which I have no right to interfere. I have this day issued an order of which I inclose a copy to the U. S. marshal and the provost-marshal at Baltimore to arrest any persons who have been in arms in Virginia if they appear at the polls and attempt to vote as we are told some such persons intend, and to take into custody all who aid and abet them in their treasonable designs; and I have requested the judges of election in case any such person presents himself at the polls and attempts to vote to commit him until he can be taken into custody by the authority of the United States.

I consider it of the utmost importance that the election should be a fair one and that there should be no obstruction to the free and full expression of the voice of the people of the State believing as I do that it will be decidedly in favor of the Union. But it is in the power of the judges of election under the authority given them to satisfy themselves as to the qualifications of the voters-to put to those who offer to poll such searching questions in regard to residence and citizenship as to detect traitors and without any violation of the constitution or laws of Maryland to prevent the pollution of the ballot boxes by their votes.

I am, very respectfully, yours,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

[Inclosure.]

PROCLAMATION.

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, November 1, 1861.

To THE U. S. MARSHAL OF MARYLAND AND THE PROVOST-MARSHAL OF THE CITY OF BALTIMORE:

Information has come to my knowledge that certain individuals who formerly resided in this State and are known to have been recently in Virginia bearing arms against the authority and the forces of the United States have returned to their former homes with the intention of taking part in the election of the 6th of November instant, thus carrying out at the polls the treason they have committed in the field. There is reason also to believe that other individuals lately residents of Maryland who have been engaged in similar acts of hostility to the United States or in actively aiding and abetting those in arms against the United States are about to participate in the election for the same treacherous purpose with the hope of carrying over the State by disloyal votes to the cause of rebellion and treason.

I therefore by virtue of the authority vested in me to arrest all persons in rebellion against the United States require you to take into custody all such persons in any of the election districts or precincts in which they may appear at the polls to effect their criminal attempts to {p.610} convert the elective franchise into an engine for the subversion of the Government and for the encouragement and support of its enemies. In furtherance of this object I request the judges of election of the several districts and precincts of the State in case any such person shall present himself and offer his vote to commit him until he can be taken into custody by the authority of the United States. And I call on all good and loyal citizens to support the judges of election, the U. S. marshal and his deputies and the provost-marshal of Baltimore and the police in their efforts to secure a free and fair expression of the voice of the people of Maryland and at the same time to prevent the ballot boxes from being polluted by treasonable votes.

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

BALTIMORE, November 4, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

MY DEAR SIR: At the instance of some of the immediate personal friends of Mr. Wallis I have prepared a statement embodying the substance of several interviews between him and me in relation to the probable action of the Legislature of Maryland upon the question of secession from the Union; and the statement was applied for and prepared for the purpose of being forwarded to you.

Shortly after the arrest of Mr. Wallis* and others I went several times to Washington for the purpose of having with you if the opportunity should occur a full and frank conversation in relation to all the citizens of Maryland who were detained as prisoners of state. Your numerous engagements prevented me from seeing you although besides calling at the Department I called repeatedly at your private residence.

I have always said and have said truly I am sure that the various arrests made in Maryland by the orders of the heads of the department were made on the basis of representations which the officers of Government were not at liberty to disregard and for the full investigation of which before taking action thereon there was neither time nor opportunity. But I wished to say in the desired interview that I was myself satisfied from my personal knowledge of many of the gentlemen who had been arrested that they were unjustly accused, and that I had the fullest confidence that you would come to that conclusion if the cases were fully investigated, and I meant to ask on behalf of all that the case of each of them should be examined as early as possible; that is without any delay not actually unavoidable. I desired also to state to you so far as I could do so from personal knowledge some of the reasons which induced me so earnestly to desire the liberation of gentlemen from unnecessary detention at the earliest practicable moment Failing to find you disengaged I had on the occasion of my last visit a brief interview with the Assistant Secretary of State, by whom I was assured that all the cases would be examined without unnecessary delay.

I should be wanting in candor if I did not say that there are undoubtedly in Maryland a great number of persons who sympathize strongly with the South. I deeply lament that such is the fact. At the same time I have always believed that the great body of our people are loyal in their feelings, and that there never was a moment when Maryland could have been forced into secession, even if the {p.611} General Government had not interfered. But it is right that I should further add that I am not aware nor do I believe that either the mayor,** the police commissioners, the marshal or any one of the arrested members of the Legislature have done anything whatever beyond speaking or writing in favor of secession.

Faithfully, &c.,

WM. SCHLEY.

* See p. 667 for arrest of Wallis and other members of the Maryland Legislature.

** p. 619 for arrest of the mayor, marshal and police commissioners of Baltimore.

[Inclosure.]

BALTIMORE, November 4, 1861.

Having been requested to state in writing the substance of several conversations which took place between Hon. S. Teackle Wallis and me in relation to the probable action of the Legislature of Maryland upon the question of secession from the Union I now proceed to do so.

Before the Legislature had convened in compliance with the proclamation of the Governor, but after Mr. Wallis had been chosen as one of the representatives from Baltimore to the House of Delegates, I was at his office on professional business and during the interview we conversed on several political topics, and amongst these we considered the probable action of the Legislature. I was greatly pleased to find that Mr. Wallis concurred with me in the opinion that the Legislature had no right to commit the people of Maryland on this question, and that apart from the want of constitutional power to act in the premises the attempt to do so would be highly pernicious. When therefore I received a copy of the report of the highly respectable committee of which Mr. Wallis was the chairman I was not at all surprised for I expected such result.

At a subsequent period and after the Legislature had adjourned and reassembled, and had again adjourned to meet in September, the opinion was expressed by many persons that there was a concealed purpose on the part of that body to commit the people of Maryland to secession from the Union. I reached Baltimore on the afternoon of the 31st of August, after having been absent in Allegany County with my family (who were sojourning there as usual for the summer) for nearly a month. It happened that I saw and conversed that same afternoon with a great number of persons, and some gentlemen of much intelligence and respectability seemed to have come to the fixed conclusion that there was a deep-laid scheme to embroil the people of Maryland through the action of the Legislature with the General Government, and thus eventually to place Maryland with the Confederate States in opposition to the Union. I did not concur in these apprehensions, and amongst other reasons I stated that I had had very satisfactory interviews with Mr. Wallis and with Mr. Pitts and had full confidence in both, and that it was not to be credited that the Legislature of Maryland after having adopted almost unanimously resolutions against secession would swallow their own words, and that from my personal knowledge of the members generally I felt that reliance might safely be placed on their personal honor that they would not attempt to accomplish per ambages an object which they were unwilling openly to avow.

On the following day (which was Sunday, the 1st of September) I encountered Mr. Wallis on the pavement in front of my dwelling and stated to him what I had heard and what reply I had made, and added {p.612} with some emphasis that if there was any such plan on foot that I would myself rouse the people of Maryland from one end of the State to the other, and would resist and put down the movement; and I further added that I intended to call upon him on the following day and have some conversation with him on the subject. The reply of Mr. Wallis was made in the blandest manner, and I felt that I had not expressed myself in the same calm temper. He assured me that I had done him simple justice; that he had no knowledge nor information that any such movement was in contemplation, and that he had not previously heard of the suspicion, and that if any such movement was attempted he would certainly oppose it to the utmost of his power.

Although I was quite satisfied with his assurance I thought it might be well in order to allay apprehensions of others to procure from Mr. Wallis something in writing and in a form to be published in the papers. And I went immediately to my private office and wrote a letter addressed to Mr. Wallis which I carried next morning to his office. After a full, frank and friendly conversation I stated to Mr. Wallis that I had in my pocket a letter addressed to him written by me and which I had intended to deliver so as to draw a reply for publication; but that I would not deliver it for two reasons which I assigned-firstly, that the call upon him to speak his own views as to the anticipated action of the Legislature would be disrespectful to him after the clear language of his report, and would cast unwarranted suspicion on the members of the Legislature generally, and for many of whom I had sincere respect; secondly, because I had personally great repugnance to any unnecessary appearance in the public papers.

I left Mr. Wallis on this last occasion with the expression of an earnest hope that as there was really no public matter requiring attention at the time-that the Legislature would promptly adjourn. He fully concurred in the propriety of an early adjournment, and I am convinced that if the Legislature had met he would have urged an early adjournment.

WM. SCHLEY.

–––

HEADQUARTERS FIRST BRIGADE, CASEY’S DIVISION, Bladensburg, November 9, 1861.

Capt. H. W. SMITH, Assistant Adjutant-General.

CAPTAIN: In accordance with General Casey’s instructions I have the honor to submit the following report of my expedition to the lower counties of Maryland:

...

Throughout Calvert County I found very warm receptions from Union men and others. At Prince Frederick alone was there any open attempt of violence directed toward Union men. The following persons were arrested: Hon. Augustus R. Sollers, ex-M. C. He used the most violent and treasonable language, drew a large knife and cut to the right and left. He was secured and brought in by Colonel Welch to Lower Marlborough where he was taken so ill with gout that I could not bring him but left him on his parole to report at Washington as soon as he is able to move. Mervin B. Hance, Walter Hellen, William D. Williams and John Broome were arrested charged with treasonable language and with carrying weapons. They also were brought to Lower Marlborough. I released them under oath of fealty and that they had not borne arms against our forces.

{p.613}

At Lower Marlborough Colonel Rodman made several arrests but subsequently released the individuals. They had been disorderly while under the influence of strong drink.

At Saint Leonard’s all went off very quietly without any arrest.

...

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

O. O. HOWARD, Brigadier-General, Commanding.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, Md., November 12, 1861.

Brig. Gen. H. H. LOCKWOOD, Comdg. Expedition to Eastern Shore.

GENERAL: I have just seen with great surprise and regret a memoranda of an order said to have been issued by Major Andrews, of the Second Delaware Volunteers, to Captain Moorehouse of the said regiment, under which order a very respectable member of the bar of Worcester county, Mr. E. K. Wilson, of Snow Hill, has been arrested. The memoranda states in substance that-

All persons who have lately uttered expressions of hostility to the Government or have spoken disrespectfully of the President of the United States are to be arrested and detained in camp.

If it be so I wish to stamp the whole transaction with my most marked disapprobation and I believe there is no man in the United States who would be more annoyed by it than the President himself. It is in direct violation of the instructions I have given and is calculated to defeat our efforts to show the people of Maryland of all classes that their rights of person and property are not only to be scrupulously respected but protected instead of being invaded by the military forces we have sent among them. No arrest is to be made without your special order in each case and then only for overt acts and giving aid and comfort to the enemy.

I am well aware that such an order has not had your approval and I should direct the officer who issued it to be arrested if I were not sure that it originated in mistaken zeal. You will please have it rescinded and do all in your power to repair the wrong done under it. And I request your especial and prompt attention to Mr. Wilson’s case, leaving it to your discretion and good judgment to do what is right. If his alleged offense is no more than the alleged memoranda above stated specifies he should be instantly discharged. Our mission is not to annoy or invade any personal rights but to correct misapprehension in regard to the intentions of the Government. And while all open acts of hostility are to be punished we should labor to win back those who-have separated themselves from us through a misunderstanding in regard to our motives and objects by kindness and conciliation, and above all by rigid abstinence from all invasion of their constitutional and legal rights.

I am, general, very respectfully, yours,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, November 26, 1861.

JOHN S. KEYES, Esq., U. S. Marshal, Boston, Mass.

SIR: Herewith I inclose several orders for the release of prisoners from Fort Warren which I will thank you to execute. Representations have been made to this Department that a certain person who obtained {p.614} a permit to visit the political prisoners confined in the several forts has abused the privilege by seeking to be employed as an attorney to intercede for their release from confinement. You will therefore please inform all the prisoners confined at Fort Warren that this Department will not recognize any person as an attorney in such cases, and that if the fact comes to the knowledge of the Department that any prisoner has agreed to pay to any attorney a sum of money or to give to him anything of value as a consideration for interceding for the release of such prisoner that fact will be held as an additional reason for continuing the confinement of such person. You will also please say to the prisoners that it is the wish of the Government that they should communicate whatever they may have to say directly to this Department.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

NOTE.-John L. Bouldin, Robert Rae, A. R. Carter, Charles D. French, Thomas Shields, George Thompson, S. B. Frost, A. Williamson, David H. Lucchesi, William G. Harrison,* John J. Heckart,* Leonard G. Quinlan,* George W. Landing* and William E. Salmon* were released. Subsequently on substantially the same terms Andrew Kessler,* Thomas J. Claggett,* J. Lawrence Jones,* Dr. Andrew A. Lynch,* Charles H. Pitts,* J. Hanson Thomas,* Clarke J. Durant,* P. F. Rasin* and Robert M. Denison* were ordered to be released. For some of them the form of oath was modified.

* Members of the Maryland Legislature. Order releasing remainder of the imprisoned members will be found at p. 748. See “Arrest and Detention of Certain Members of the Maryland Legislature,” p. 667 et seq.

–––

BALTIMORE, December 9, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

DEAR SIR: I would advise you to keep a sharp lookout for Mr. Henry May, M. C., and Mr. Vallandigham, as they in all probability will use every means in their power to render aid to the Southern rebels, and if circumstances were favorable to their cause would go off as Mr. Breckinridge did, as while he (Breckinridge) was in this city they were on the speaker’s stand with him giving aid and countenance to his treason and were also announced to speak after him, and I have no doubt but what they would have given utterance to the same wicked and treacherous sentiments if they had been permitted. For a number of days thereafter they all three with other rebels were loitering about the city, and took a private boat and went down the river and around Fort McHenry taking observations, and I have every reason to believe that one is as guilty as the other, and Mr. Breckinridge has shown conclusively what he is.

I fear too much confidence is placed in the loyalty of Baltimoreans. I am sure that the rebel spirit here if not closely watched is as dangerous as ever; that many persons professing loyalty are base traitors to their country, and unfortunately some few such are kept in office under the Government. I have been a close observer and have had some opportunities to know. I have been engaged since April last in attending to the wants of soldiers, carrying water and such like and nothing else. About the 19th April last I with others were threatened with violence, but I told them publicly on that day and at the risk of violence that the Stars and Stripes would be perpetuated, and that the time would come when many of them would be hung, and that I was a candidate for hangman general, and as I was one of the number who {p.615} voted for Abraham Lincoln I found there was no chance for anything else in Baltimore, consequently I urge my claims on the Government.

Your most obedient servant,

G. A. FARQUHAR, An old Correspondent.

–––

PRINCE FREDERICKTOWN, CALVERT COUNTY, MD. (Received December 9.)

Governor SEWARD.

DEAR SIR: I received a few days since a letter from my friend, the Hon. Reverdy Johnson, inclosing a note from you in which you direct me to report to you at the state Department at my convenience and in the meantime remain upon my parole. The same day you wrote this I was discharged from arrest by General Dix in Baltimore who kindly investigated my case. I had been very ill a few days previous to my arrival in Baltimore whither I had gone the moment I was able to leave my bed on my way to Washington to report myself to General Casey according to the order of General Howard. My friend Mr. William Price called upon General Dix and explained to him the circumstances under which I was arrested and the charges alleged against me and showed him the most ample proof in refutation of them, upon which I was sent for by the general who after requiring me to take the oath of allegiance (which I most cheerfully and willingly did) promptly discharged me. I take it for granted that after this that I shall not be required to report myself at the State Department.

The truth is, Governor Seward, my arrest was a simple outrage only to be excused upon the ground of over zeal in the officer who ordered it. He declared here he had no orders from Washington to arrest me, but that since he had arrived he had been informed that I and others had formed a plan to take the polls on the day of the election and prevent the Union men from voting. Now this may have been told Colonel Welch, but it was as pure a fabrication as ever was invented by wit and malice combined, and I have certificates and affidavits from nearly all the leading Union men in the district and county to that effect. The truth is I took no part in the election; never attended a public meeting and never publicly or even privately expressed any opinion about it, or the questions upon which the canvass was.

Colonel Welch says he was also informed that I had forced my son to go to Virginia and join the Confederate Army. This is equally false, and I produced to General Dix abundant proof of this. My son and my only son did join the Confederate Army, but against my earnest entreaties and the tears of his mother and sisters. I commanded him not to go. I held out every inducement for him to remain that I was able to hold out. In truth when he did go I denounced him for doing so and ordered him to hold no further intercourse with me or any of the family. But he was twenty-four years old and beyond my authority.

These are the charges against me. “The very head and front of my offending hath this extent, no more.” I have before heard of this last charge and that it had been brought against me in Washington, and when the First Massachusetts Regiment under Colonel Cowdin visited this county some two months ago they sought to arrest me. I was driven from my home, family and business and lived in the woods for weeks. They visited my house the night of their arrival and searched for me; they placed a guard of 150 men around it; they killed my hogs, sheep, poultry and wantonly shot the best horse on the farm, for all of which I was never offered a cent nor have I since received a cent.

{p.616}

Now, all this has been endured by as loyal a citizen as any in this State; so help me Heaven I have never perpetrated or dreamt of perpetrating an act that malice could construe into treason, for I hold that allegiance and protection are reciprocal obligations and that it is both treasonable and dishonorable for a citizen living under the protection of the Government to assist or aid in any way the enemies of that Government. God knows I have not received much of its protection lately; but notwithstanding all my persecutions I have sternly refused (although importuned very often to do so) to aid those in arms against the Government. Many persons have passed through this county on their way to Virginia, and contraband of many kinds have also been sent by the same route and I have been called upon to assist in the work. I have always refused to have anything to do with such matters, and have even refused to let strangers enter my house when I suspected where they were going.

For all this I have incurred the displeasure of some of my best friends and looked upon with suspicion and distrust by many others. But for my loyalty I have received nothing but persecution; I have been driven from home, my property destroyed, my family harassed and insulted, and finally arrested. True, I have been discharged but the next regiment that visits the county will be told the same tales by some poor timid wretches who in that way seek the favor and protection of the officers and I shall be again arrested.

Now, sir, it is on this account I have written you this long letter. Am I not entitled to the protection of the Government? And will you not under all the circumstances I have mentioned give me in some form that protection? I entreat you as an act of simple justice to send me something that I may show to whoever seeks to arrest me. Without this I shall not feel safe for a moment, and must again leave home upon the arrival of troops. Be kind enough to excuse me for troubling you with this long letter, but I could not say less with justice to myself.

Very respectfully,

AUG. R. SOLLERS.

P. S.-It may be right for me to say that I do not believe that either men or contraband of any description have passed through this county for the last two months, nor do I think any will as long as any troops remain in Charles and Saint Mary’s Counties, through one of which they must pass to reach the Potomac.

A. R. S.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, December 13, 1861.

Maj. Gen. G. B. MCCLELLAN, Commanding the Army.

GENERAL: Brigadier-General Lockwood summoned the magistrates and other persons in authority in Accomack County to meet him on Monday last at Drummondtown and all present took the oath of allegiance. The smaller officers immediately followed the example. He has ere this gone to Northampton County where the same course will be pursued. He has made but one arrest, the commonwealth’s attorney, who went to Virginia and returned very defiant and untractable. He is at Fort McHenry. It may be necessary though I hope not to make a few more examples.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

{p.617}

–––

Draft of a proclamation* by the President of the United States found among the files of the State Department.

In view of the recent declaration of the people of Maryland of their adhesion to the Union so distinctly made in their recent election, the President directs that all the political prisoners who having heretofore been arrested in that State are now detained in military custody by the President’s authority be released from their imprisonment on the following conditions, namely: That if they were holding any civil or military offices when arrested the terms of which have not expired they shall not resume or reclaim such offices; and secondly, all persons availing themselves of this proclamation shall engage by oath or parole of honor to maintain the Union and the Constitution of the United States, and in no way to aid or abet by arms, counsel, conversation or information of any kind the existing insurrection against the Government of the United States.

To guard against misapprehension it is proper to state that this proclamation does not apply to prisoners of war.

* This draft is neither dated nor signed, but it is marked “File: January 1, 1862.”

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, January 23, 1862.

Hon. ROBERT C. WINTHROP.

SIR: I have the pleasure of sending to you for the Massachusetts Historical Society the collection of secession emblems I have made, and which I referred to in a former letter.

First. A secession flag. This flag was taken from a party of men near North Point, where the British Army landed in 1814. They were on their way to the insurgent States. The flag was found in the carpetbag of Mr. George A. Appleton, a young gentleman of this city, about eighteen years of age, a grandson of Colonel Armistead, who defended Fort McHenry at the time the Star Spangled Banner was written. Young Appleton was sent out of Fort McHenry on the anniversary of the battle of North Point for infidelity to the same flag, and was imprisoned for some time at Fort Columbus, in the Harbor of New York, and more recently at Fort Warren, in the Harbor of Boston. He is now in this city awaiting the action of the Government in his case.

Second. A flag representing the arms of the Colony of Maryland. This flag was flying over a building which was a place of resort for certain disloyal members of the old Kane police after their disbandment by the order of the Federal Government. They dared not use the secession flag and this was adopted by them as a substitute. It was first noticed by Colonel Wyman, of the Sixteenth Regiment Massachusetts Volunteers, who called the attention-of the police to it. I inclose a letter* from George H. Dodge, esq., provost-marshal of Baltimore, concerning both these flags.

Third. A pair of secession slippers taken by the police from a person on his way to the shoemaker to have them made up.

Fourth. A secession cap taken from R. H. Bigger, a prisoner now in Fort Warren, who was taken into custody in Baltimore while secretly recruiting for the insurgent army.

Fifth. A great variety of secession emblems, songs, envelopes, cockades, &c.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

* not inclosed.

{p.618}

–––

ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S OFFICE, February 17, 1862.

WILLIAM MEADE ADDISON, Esq., U. S. Attorney, Baltimore, Md.

SIR: I have every disposition to deal as leniently as possible with John Henderson, jr. In that spirit I have had some conversation about him with others connected with the Government here on view of the documents you sent me not long ago. The main difficulty seems to be this: How a man of Mr. Henderson’s reputed intelligence could in a moment of high popular excitement and threatened insurrection proceed to destroy the buoys (the Government guides into and out of the port) on no better warrant than an order of one Major Trimble, who pretends to act by authority of the mayor. It is assumed by some and I find it hard to convert the idea that a man of Mr. Henderson’s intelligence must have known that it was a crime in Major Trimble and in the mayor of Baltimore to do the thing, and therefore that the order itself was insurrectionary and hostile to the Government. If you can state any further facts which may rebut this presumption, I will willingly receive and act upon them.

With great respect, your obedient servant,

EDWARD BATES, Attorney-General.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, February 21, 1862.

Hon. EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

SIR: Dr. Alexander C. Robinson, Mr. John C. Brune and William H. Norris fled from this city last fall while orders were in the hands of the police for their arrest. Mr. Brune was to have been arrested with certain other members of the Legislature, nearly all of whom have been released. Doctor Robinson and Mr. Norris had committed no particular acts of hostility to the Government subsequently to the 19th of April last but were offensive in their conduct and conversation as secessionists. I know no reason why these men should not return home, and if you will authorize me I will advise their friends that they can do so reporting to me and giving the parole required by your order of the 14th instant.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, February 27, 1862.

Brig. Gen. JOHN P. HATCH, Annapolis.

SIR: I am directed by Major-General Dix to state to you that complaints have been received by him of arrests having been made by Captain Bragg at Friendship in Anne Arundel County. Herewith inclosed is a copy of the letter of instructions* to Colonel Morris. It was as you perceive never contemplated by Major-General Dix that arrests should be made without his express authority and he suggests the propriety of relieving Captain Bragg and sending a more prudent and discreet officer in his place. He will, however, leave this to your judgment. Please communicate to these headquarters any information you may be able to obtain relating to these reported arrests and take steps to carry out the original Instructions to Colonel Morris.

By command of Major-General Dix:

WM. H. LUDLOW, Major and Aide-de-Camp.

* Not inclosed.

{p.619}

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, March 17, 1862.

The POLICE COMMISSIONERS, City of Baltimore.

GENTLEMEN: In behalf of the Government of the United States I give notice that the police force established under its authority will be placed under your control on the 20th instant. In making this communication to you I respectfully request the retention of Mr. McPhail, whose great executive ability has been of incalculable service to the Government. There is still as you are well aware a suppressed feeling of disloyalty in a portion of the population of this city, and I deem it of the utmost importance to the Government that Mr. McPhail should be retained on account of his familiar acquaintance with the transactions of the last eight months and the public necessities which have grown out of those transactions and which still continue to exist.

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

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

–––

Arrest of the Mayor, Marshal and Police Commissioners of Baltimore by the Military Authorities.

Memoranda from Record Book, State Department, “Arrests for Disloyalty.”

George William Brown* of Baltimore, mayor of said city, was arrested by military authority on or about the 13th day of September, 1861, and was delivered by Major-General Dix to the custody of Major-General Wool at Fort Monroe on the 14th day of September, 1861, by order from the War Department. He was afterward transferred to Fort Lafayette by order of Lieutenant-General Scott and still later to Fort Warren. There are no papers in the State Department showing the precise character of the charges against Brown. The action of the Department in regard to this person has been upon applications to visit him and to release him upon parole or otherwise; in all which the advice of the military department in which he resided and was arrested has been taken as a guide. On the 4th day of December, 1861, Brown was released from confinement on his parole not to leave the New England States nor to do any act hostile or injurious to the United States. The duration of his release and parole was limited to thirty days. On the 4th day of January, 1862, Brown surrendered himself according to the conditions of his parole, but was not recommitted to Fort Warren till January 14, till which time correspondence was taking place in relation to an extension of his parole or his release upon other terms. He was offered an extension of his parole for ninety days but declined it and was recommitted to Fort Warren on the 14th day of January, 1862, as aforesaid. The said George William Brown remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

{p.620}

George P. Kane, marshal of police of Baltimore, was arrested on the 27th of June, 1861, by Major-General Banks and confined at Fort McHenry from whence he was transferred to Fort Lafayette and afterward to Fort Columbus and Fort Warren, Kane was notoriously in deep sympathy with the rebels and his arrest was a measure of military precaution. No testimony has been furnished to the State Department by the military department at Baltimore of any specific acts of disloyalty by Kane. November 27, 1861, Kane being then confined at Fort Warren was released for three weeks on his parole to attend the funeral of his father-in-law at the expiration of which time he returned to Fort Warren where he remained in custody February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

Charles Howard was one of the Baltimore police commissioners, notoriously disloyal and in deep collusion with the rebels, having several sons in their military service with his avowed approbation. In a letter dated November 14, 1861, he states that he was arrested on the morning of the 1st of July, 1861, by an order of Major-General Banks acting as he stated under instructions from the War Department. He was confined at Fort McHenry but afterward transferred to Fort Lafayette and thence to Fort Warren. On the 14th of November, 1861, he was asked by direction of the Secretary of State if he would be willing to take the oath of allegiance to the Constitution and Government of the United States if he should be set at liberty. He replied formally in writing that he would not. So far as the Department of State is advised the arrest and detention of Charles Howard seem to have been military precautionary measures founded upon his well-known sympathies with treason. The said Howard remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

William H. Gatchell was one of the board of commissioners of police of Baltimore, universally known and admitted to be disloyal and in deep sympathy with the rebellion. He was arrested on the 1st of July, 1861, by order of Major-General Banks and confined at Fort McHenry from whence he was transferred to Fort Lafayette and subsequently to Fort Warren. This arrest was made as a measure of military precaution to guard against the abuse of authority in furtherance of the interests of the insurrection to which the police commissioners were contributing all their exertions. The said Gatchell remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

John W. Davis was one of the police commissioners of Baltimore, notoriously disloyal and in deep collusion with the rebellion. He was arrested on the 1st day of July, 1861, by order of Major-General Banks and confined in Fort McHenry until removed to Fort Lafayette whence he was afterward transferred to Fort Warren. When asked in November, 1861, by direction of the Secretary of State if he would be willing to take the oath of allegiance to the Constitution and Government of the United States if he should be set at liberty he evaded an {p.621} answer. On the 19th of December, 1861, General Dix recommended that Davis be granted leave of absence from Fort Warren for thirty days on his parole. This was done. On the 16th of January, 1862, Major-General Dix recommended that Davis’ parole be extended and modified so that he should only be required to report to General Dix when directed so to do. This indulgence was also granted. The arrest and detention of John W. Davis were purely military precautionary measures founded upon his known sympathies with treason, so far as the State Department is advised. The said Davis is now at large upon his parole given to Major-General Dix, the form and precise conditions whereof do not appear to have been made known to the State Department.

* Brown was arrested with the members of the legislature some two months subsequent to the arrest of the Baltimore police commissioners. The order finally releasing Brown, Kane, Howard, and Gatchell will be found at p. 748. Davis had previously been released by General Dix on parole, which parole was renewed about January 15, 1862, indefinitely. See p. 667 et seq. for correspondence, etc., relating to the arrest of certain members of the Maryland legislature-COMPILER.

–––

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, June 24, 1861.

Maj. Gen. N. P. BANKS, U. S. Army.

SIR: Mr. Snethen, of Baltimore, a gentleman of standing, will deliver to you this communication. He has just given to the Secretary of War and myself many important facts touching the subject of [the] Union in that city. It is confirmed by him that among the citizens the secessionists if not the most numerous are by far more active and effective than the supporters of the Federal Government.

It is the opinion of the Secretary of War and I need not add my own that the blow should be early struck to carry consternation into the ranks of our numerous enemies about you. Accordingly it seems desirable that you should take measures quietly to seize at once and securely hold the four members of the Baltimore police board, viz, Charles Howard, Win. H. Gatchell, J. W. Davis and C. D. Hinks, esqs., together with the chief of the police, G. P. Kane. It is further suggested that you appoint a provost-marshal to superintend and cause to be executed the police law provided by the Legislature of Maryland for Baltimore.

Your discretion and firmness are equally relied upon for the due execution of the foregoing views.

I remain, sir, with great respect, yours truly,

WINFIELD SCOTT.

–––

WASHINGTON, June 25, 1861.

Maj. Gen. N. P. BANKS, U. S. Army, Commanding Department of Annapolis, Fort McHenry, Md.

SIR: The general-in-chief has heard that on several occasions when troops have arrived in Baltimore from the North the police and others have interfered to prevent friendly persons from furnishing them with water at the depot. Two worthy Quakers named William Robinson and James D. Graham have it seems been threatened with violence for no other cause than this. The general asks your attention to this matter and suggests that by having a detachment of your troops at the depot at the proper time the regiments arriving might be duly supplied with water.

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

E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

{p.622}

–––

BALTIMORE, June 27, 1861.

WILLIAM H. SEWARD:

George P. Kane, marshal of police, was arrested at 3 o’clock this morning by a detachment of troops. The marshal was in bed at his residence. The arrest was effected without excitement. The policemen on the route were taken into custody to prevent an alarm. Kane was taken to Fort McHenry where he is now confined. On arriving at the fort the police officers were released. The arrest is not generally known. No excitement manifested.

MARRIOTT BOSWELL.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, July 1, 1861.

Col. EDWARD F. JONES, Sixth Regiment Massachusetts Volunteers.

SIR: Major-General Banks directs that you will proceed with a detachment of nine companies of your regiment immediately upon receipt of this order to the residence of Mr. Charles Howard, late a member of the board of police commissioners, or wherever else he may be found and him the said Howard arrest and securely hold and bring him to Fort McHenry in this department without fail; for all of which these presents and orders shall be your full warrant and authority.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

ROBT. WILLIAMS, Assistant Adjutant-General.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, July 1, 1861.

Col. WILLIAM D. LEWIS, Eighteenth Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers.

SIR: Major-General Banks directs that you proceed with a detachment of four companies of your regiment immediately upon receipt of this order to the residence of Mr. William H. Gatchell, late a member of the board of police commissioners, or wherever else he may be found and him the said Gatchell arrest and securely hold and bring him to Fort McHenry in this department without fail; for all of which these presents and orders shall be your full warrant and authority.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

ROBT. WILLIAMS, Assistant Adjutant-General.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, July 1, 1861.

Col. TURNER G. MOREHEAD, Twenty-second Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers.

SIR: Major-General Banks directs that you proceed with a detachment of seven companies of your regiment immediately upon the receipt of these orders to the residences of Messrs. John W. Davis and Charles D. Hinks, late members of the board of police commissioners, or {p.623} wherever else they may be found and they the said Davis and Hinks arrest and securely hold and bring them to Fort McHenry in this department without fail; for all of which these presents and orders shall be your full warrant and authority.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

ROBT. WILLIAMS, Assistant Adjutant-General.

–––

BALTIMORE, July 1, 1861.

Lieutenant-General SCOTT:

The board of police was arrested this morning at 4 o’clock. Troops have been stationed at the principal squares of the city. All is perfectly quiet. We greatly need cavalry for patrol duty.

N. P. BANKS.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, Fort McHenry, July 1, 1861.

Lieutenant-General SCOTT, Commander-in-Chief of the Army.

GENERAL: In pursuance of orders of the 24th ultimo received from your department I arrested and now detain in custody of the United States Mr. George P. Kane, chief of police of the city of Baltimore. Mr. Kane was arrested on the morning of the 27th ultimo. The strong position he held as the head of a large body of armed men posted in different parts of the city who might be summoned together without loss of time, and the necessity of succeeding in the arrest if attempted made it impracticable in my judgment in view of all facts to undertake at the same time the execution of other parts of this order.

The arrest of the chief of police and the suspension of the powers of the board of police were announced to the people of Baltimore in a proclamation dated the 27th June, a copy of which is herewith inclosed. Upon the arrest of the chief of police Col. John R. Kenly, of the First Maryland Regiment, was appointed provost-marshal within and for the city of Baltimore who entered at once upon his duties. Subsequent to a recognition and protest against the suspension of their functions by the hoard of police they declared in resolutions formally adopted and published that the police law itself had been suspended and the officers and men discharged from duty for the present, holding them at the same time to be subject to their orders both now and hereafter. Colonel Kenly was obliged immediately to organize a force of 400 men to serve as police officers in order that the city should not be entirely divested of all police protection, which with the aid of many loyal citizens was effected and the men sworn to the just performance of their duty in the course of a few hours.

The city has remained in perfect order and quiet since the organization of the new police. The headquarters of the police when vacated by the officers appointed by the board resembled a concealed arsenal. Large quantities of arms and ammunition were found secreted in such places and with such skill as to forbid the thought of their being held for just or lawful purposes. An inventory of the arms and ammunition will be forwarded. Colonel Kenly has performed his duties as provost-marshal in the most prompt, faithful and discreet manner.

{p.624}

This morning at 4 o’clock the members of the board of police were arrested by my order and together with the chief of police are now securely held in custody by Major Morris, commanding officer at Fort McHenry, in behalf of the Government of the United States. The persons arrested are Messrs. Charles Howard, president of the board, William H. Gatchell, Charles D. Hinks and John W. Davis, being all its members except the mayor of the city who is connected ex officio with this department.

In view of possible occurrences and the better to meet contingent action of disloyal persons rumors of which have reached me from quarters entitled to respect I have placed a large part of the force under my command within the city and in possession of the principal public squares. No building of importance will be occupied and no obstruction to the business of the city will occur unless it be upon the strongest public necessity. The troops will be withdrawn from the city as soon as the question of the conflicting forces of police can be arranged. This I believe will be done at once. The arrests of this morning and the reasons for the occupation of the city have been announced by proclamation a copy of which is herewith inclosed.

I have the gratification to inform you that all the arrests have been made without disturbance and that the city is now and has been since the arrest of the chief of police more quiet and orderly than for any time for many months previous.

I have the honor to be, with great respect, your obedient servant,

NATH. P. BANKS, Major-General, Commanding.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, June 27, 1861.

To THE PEOPLE OF THE CITY OF BALTIMORE:

By virtue of authority vested in me and in obedience to orders as commanding general of the Military Department of Annapolis I have arrested and do now detain in custody Mr. George P. Kane, chief of police of the city of Baltimore. I deem it proper at this the moment of arrest to make formal and public declaration of the motive by which I have been governed in this proceeding. It is not my purpose neither is it in consonance with my instructions to interfere in any manner whatever with the legitimate government of the people of Baltimore or Maryland. I desire to support the public authorities in all appropriate duties-in preserving peace, protecting property and the rights of persons, in obeying and upholding every municipal regulation and public statute consistent with the Constitution and laws of the United States and of Maryland. But unlawful combinations of men organized for resistance to such laws, that provide hidden deposits of arms and ammunition, encourage contraband traffic with men at war with the Government and while enjoying its protection and privileges stealthily wait opportunity to combine their means and forces with those in rebellion against its authority, are not among the recognized or legal rights of any class of men and cannot be permitted under any form of government whatever. Such combinations are well known to exist in this department. The mass of citizens of Baltimore and of Maryland loyal to the Constitution and the Union are neither parties to nor responsible for them. The chief of police, however, is not only believed to be cognizant of these facts but in contravention of his {p.625} duty and in violation of law he is by direction and indirection both witness and protector to the transactions and the parties engaged therein. Under such circumstances the Government cannot regard him otherwise than as the head of an armed force hostile to its authority and acting in concert with its avowed enemies. For this reason superseding his official authority and that of commissioner of police I have arrested and do now detain him in custody of the United States. And in further pursuance of my instructions I have appointed for the time being Colonel Kenly, of the First Regiment of Maryland Volunteers, provost-marshal in and for the city of Baltimore to superintend and cause to be executed the police laws provided by the Legislature of Maryland with the aid and assistance of the subordinate officers of the police department, and he will be respected accordingly.

Whenever a loyal citizen shall be otherwise named for the performance of this duty who will execute these laws impartially and in good faith to the Government of the United States the military force of this department will render to him that instant and willing obedience which is due from every good citizen to his government.

NATH. P. BANKS, Major-General, Commanding Department of Annapolis.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, Fort McHenry, July 1, 1861.

To THE PEOPLE OF THE CITY OF BALTIMORE:

In pursuance of orders issued from the Headquarters of the Army at Washington for the preservation of the public peace in this department I have arrested and do now detain in custody of the United States the members of the late board of police, Messrs. Charles Howard, William H. Gatchell, Charles D. Hinks and John W. Davis-the incidents of the late week furnishing full justification for this order. The police headquarters under charge of the board when abandoned by their officers resembled in some respects a concealed arsenal. After public recognition and protest against the “suspension of their fucntions” they continue in daily secret session. Upon a forced and unwarrantable construction of my proclamation of the 27th ultimo they declared the police law itself suspended and the officers and men off duty for the present intending to leave the city without any police protection whatever. They refused to recognize the force necessarily appointed for its protection and hold subject to their orders now and hereafter the old police-a large body of armed men-for some purpose unknown to the Government and inconsistent with its security. To anticipate their intentions and orders I have temporarily placed a portion of my command within the city. I disclaim for the Government I represent all desire, intention and purpose to interfere in any of the ordinary municipal affairs of Baltimore. Whenever a loyal citizen can be nominated to the office of marshal who will execute the police laws impartially and in good faith to the United States the military force will be withdrawn at once from the central parts of the municipality. No soldier will be permitted in the city except under regulations satisfactory to the marshal or by order of the general in command, and whenever the municipal laws and regulations shall be by them violated they shall be punished according to the municipal laws and upon the judgment of the civil tribunals.

NATH. P. BANKS, Major. General, Commanding.

{p.626}

[Inclosure No. 3.]

Memorandum of ordnance, &c., captured by the provost-marshal at the time of arresting the police commissioners of Baltimore, July 1, 1861.

Six 6-pounder iron cannon; two 4-pounder iron cannon; 332 muskets, rifles and pistols, and a large quantity of ammunition, &c.

[Inclosure No. 4.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, June 27, 1861.

Col. JOHN R. KENLY, Provost-Marshal.

SIR: My attention has been called to a resolution purporting to have been this day passed by the late board of police commissioners expressing the opinion that “the suspension of their functions suspended at the same time the operations of the police law and puts the officers and men off duty for the present.”

You will take special notice, sir, that by my proclamation of this day neither the law nor the officers appointed to execute the laws are affected in any manner whatever except as it operates upon the members of the board of commissioners and chief of police whose functions were and are suspended. Every part of the police law is to be enforced by you except that which refers to the authority of the commissioners and chief of police; and every officer and man with the exception of those persons above named will be continued in service by you and in the positions they now occupy and with the advantages they now receive unless one or more shall refuse to discharge their duties.

If any police officer declines to perform his duty in order to avoid the anarchy which it was the purpose of the commissioners to bring upon the city by incorrectly stating that it had been by my act deprived of its police protection you will select in conference with such of the public authorities as will aid you good men and true to fill their places and discharge their duties.

You will also take especial notice that no opinion, resolution or other act of the late board of commissioners can operate to limit the effective force of the police law or to discharge any officer engaged in its execution. If any provision of the law fails to be executed it will be from the choice of the city; and if any officer except such as are herein named leave the service it will be upon his own decision.

You will cause these views to be made known as the rule of your conduct.

I repeat my declaration and my purpose: No intervention with the laws or government of the city whatever is intended except to prevent secret, violent and treasonable combinations of disloyal men against the Government of the United States.

I am, sir, truly, yours, &c.,

NATH. P. BANKS.

[Sub-inclosure.]

Matters being thus arranged the board of police commissioners went into secret session. The result of their deliberation was embodied in the following preamble and resolutions:

Whereas, the laws of the State of Maryland give the whole and exclusive control of the police force of the city to the board of police organized and appointed by the General Assembly, and not only are said board bound to exercise the powers and to discharge the duties imposed upon them but all other persons are positively prohibited under heavy penalties from interfering with them in so doing; and

{p.627}

Whereas, there is no power given to the board to transfer the control of any portion of the police force to any person or persons whomsoever other than the officers of police appointed by them in pursuance of the express provisions of the law and under their orders; and

Whereas, by order of Major-General Banks, an officer of the U. S. Army commanding in this city, the marshal of police has been arrested, the board of police superseded and an officer of the army has been appointed provost-marshal and directed to assume the command and control of the police force of this city: Therefore, be it

Resolved, That this board do solemnly protest against the orders and proceedings above referred to of Major-General Banks as an arbitrary exercise of military power not warranted by any provision of the Constitution or laws of the United States or of the State of Maryland, but in derogation of all of them.

Resolved, That whilst the board yielding to the force of circumstances will do nothing to increase the present excitement or obstruct the execution of such measures as Major-General Banks may deem proper to take on his own responsibility for the preservation of the peace of the city and of public order they cannot consistently with their views of official duty and of obligation to their oaths of office recognize the right of any of the officers and men of the police force as such to receive orders or directions from any other authority than from this board.

Resolved, That in the opinion of the board the forcible suspension of their functions suspends at the same time the active operation of the police law and puts the officers and men off duty for the present; leaving them subject, however, to the rules and regulations of the service as to their personal conduct and deportment and to the orders which this board may see fit hereafter to issue when the present illegal suspension of their functions shall be removed.

[Signed by all the board.]

In conformity with these resolves the board summoned the different police captains and informed them that they had concluded to disband the police force and through the captains the men were informed of this intention. They accordingly vacated the station-houses and divested themselves of the insignia of office.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF ANNAPOLIS, Fort McHenry, July 3, 1861.

Lieutenant-General SCOTT.

GENERAL: Mr. Charles D. Hinks, one of the commissioners of police arrested on the 1st instant and now a prisoner in the fort, is in ill health. His physician, Dr. John Buckler, whose letter I inclose, declares that confinement at the fort will be attended with fatal consequences. Doctor Smith, physician at the city infirmary, and Doctor Martin, of the Massachusetts Rifles, concur in the opinion of Doctor Buckler and represent Mr. Hinks as in the last stages of consumption.

He has not been present in the city over a month having resided in the South on account of his health, and has not therefore participated in political affairs here until very recently. Upon inquiry among many prominent men I learn he is the least objectionable of any of the prisoners. His death in prison would make an unpleasant public impression. His release with proper declarations as to his future conduct would produce an agreeable impression. I would respectfully recommend that authority be given to release him whenever it can be done with safety to the public interests.

I hope by concurrent opinion of many influential citizens to make such an appointment of marshal as will speedily bring all difficulties to an end in Baltimore. The troops will then be withdrawn from the city proper at once. I am gratified to be able to report that Baltimore is perfectly orderly and quiet night and day.

With great respect, I am your obedient servant,

N. P. BANKS, Major-General, Commanding, &c.

{p.628}

[Inclosure.]

BALTIMORE, July 2, 1861.

General N. P. BANKS.

SIR: I beg to state to you that Mr. C. D. Hinks, one of the commissioners of police who was arrested yesterday and conveyed to Fort McHenry, is seriously ill with pulmonary consumption. In my judgment as his attending physician confinement at the fort will be followed with fatal consequences. I have taken the liberty of acquainting you with these facts and to request you to lay his case before the proper authorities and procure his release as early as possible.

I have the honor of being, respectfully, yours, &c.,

JOHN BUCKLER. M. D.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington. July 5, 1861.

Maj. Gen. NATHANIEL P. BANKS, Baltimore.

GENERAL: I have the honor to acquaint you that yesterday Messrs. Reverdy Johnson and John P. Kennedy called on the President and recommended that Mr. Howard, one of the police commissioners there recently arrested and now confined by your orders, should be released. The President received the recommendation with all the respect due to the acknowledged patriotism and high social standing of those gentlemen. Having considered the subject he instructs me to inform you that as he has entire confidence in your discretion and in the sufficiency of the motives which led to the arrest he preferred to leave to your discretion also the expediency of terminating it. If therefore the application should be made to you you will dispose of it accordingly.

I have the honor to be, general, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

Extract from proceedings of the House of Representatives, July 18, 1861.*

At the request of Mr. May the following report of Marshal George P. Kane, chief of police of Baltimore, to the president of the board of police relating to the attack on the Federal troops en route through Baltimore was read to the House by the clerk:

POLICE DEPARTMENT, OFFICE OF THE MARSHAL, Baltimore, May 8, 1861.

CHARLES HOWARD, Esq., President of the Board of Police.

SIR: The columns of the Baltimore American of this date contain an assault upon my official conduct as commanding officer of the police force of this city in connection with the occurrences of the 19th of April last which seem to require some notice in order that the facts of the case may be duly registered on the journals of your office.

With that view I have the honor to invite your attention to the fact that on the forenoon of Thursday, the 18th of April, I was directed by the police board to furnish escort to two bodies of Federal troops which were expected on that day by the Northern Central road at 1 o’clock and by the Wilmington and Philadelphia road at {p.629} 4 o’clock respectively, and to see that they were passed safely through our city.

Subsequently on the same day information was communicated to me that the Philadelphia company fearing that the passage of these troops would create excitement were maturing arrangements to pass them across our harbor from Canton to Locust Point, thus avoiding the streets of our city. It will be seen, however, that this arrangement was not consummated.

At 1 a.m. I was on the ground at the outer depot of the Northern Central road and took command of the force which had been detailed to that point. I was accompanied to the depot by his honor Mayor Brown, who seemed deeply anxious that our laws should be respected and enforced. The mayor, however, was called away by message from the Governor to meet in consultation at the moment when the train arrived. It is enough to say, however, that the troops were safely escorted to Mount Clare depot and departed for Washington, having experienced no more annoyance than might have been expected, as doubtless the officers of the regular troops who accompanied the detachment will readily testify.

My force was kept under arms until a late hour waiting the arrival of the detachment expected from Philadelphia; but it was finally ascertained from the railroad agent that the troops had not even started nor did they know when they would start from Philadelphia, when the police force was dismissed with orders to remain ready for instant call. I heard nothing more of these troops until twenty minutes past 5 o’clock on the next (Friday) morning, at which time I was met on the street by one of my men with a dispatch from-the southern police station signed by Mr. Commissioner Davis informing me that the troops from Philadelphia would arrive at the Camden street (Washington) depot within thirty minutes; that the cars containing them would not stop at the Philadelphia depot but go directly to the Washington depot to which place I was requested by the railroad authorities to send a police force.

I at once telegraphed to the several stations and within the thirty minutes I was on the ground at the Camden station with an ample force, but was then told that the troops were just crossing the Susquehanna River and would not arrive for some time.

With the view to keep down the excitement I sent the police force from the depot to a neighboring police station to await the trains coming and also sent for his honor the mayor, who soon appeared accompanied by the board of police. The cars arrived and very soon an immense throng of people were congregated, but by the firmness of the police the troops were all shifted from the Philadelphia to the Washington cars without any collision with our people having occurred and the excitement partially subsided. After waiting some considerable time for the train to start and not being made aware that any more Philadelphia cars were expected I inquired of some of the railroad agents present the cause of the delay and was informed that obstructions had been placed on the Washington track in advance of the train. I at once sent a detachment of police under determined and reliable officers to guard the track outside of the city and to see that the trains were protected to the Relay House (a distance of nine miles) if necessary.

After waiting a long additional time and having made repeated inquires as to the cause of the continued delay in starting the train I was for the first time informed that other troops were expected at that station, and at the same moment learned that a riot had commenced in Pratt street.

I promptly devolved the command at the Camden station upon Deputy Marshal Gifford and started for the scene of riot with a detachment of my men and met the Massachusetts soldiery on Pratt street near Light street (his honor Mayor Brown being with them) hastening toward the Washington depot pursued by an enraged multitude. I opened my ranks through which they passed and closed in their rear; formed my men across the street; directed them to draw their revolvers and to shoot down any man who dared to break through their line. It is enough for me to say that these orders were faithfully executed; my men did their duty and the Massachusetts troops were rescued.

From that time the missiles intended for the troops were encountered by your own police force. The tumult being thus subdued, no attack being subsequently made upon the military, I marched my men back to the Camden station; saw the train safely depart for Washington; learned from the railroad officers that the troops had all departed and that the services of my command were no longer required. I dismissed the detachment to their several stations except those of the second district which I ordered to be posted for the protection of parties on Baltimore street against whom there seemed to be an intense excitement, the editors of the American and Clipper being regarded as particularly obnoxious and loudly threatened.

On the way to my office I learned from Mr. Richard Norris, jr., that there were other troops at the Philadelphia depot, and accompanied by that gentleman I hurried in a carriage to that place and there found several car-loads of troops, mostly if not all without uniforms. Some of these troops commenced jumping from {p.630} the train just as I got there and were immediately set upon by an infuriated populace. I fought hard for their protection, at first almost alone but soon had the assistance of a part of my force who hurried from the neighboring beats, and had the gratification of seeing all but those who took shelter in neighboring houses put on another train and under escort of police accompanied by myself sent safely out of the city on their return to Philadelphia. The earnest expressions of gratitude which I received from the persons thus rescued left on my mind the conviction that I had done my duty.

On this occasion I was ably assisted by Deputy Marshal Gifford and by some noble-hearted and fearless citizens, but feel bound to say that I did not recognize as thus engaged one single individual of those now actively employed in defaming the city and its authorities.

It may be proper to state that up to this time I did not know anything of the origin of the rencounter nor the extent of the killed and wounded; but only know that our whole city seemed filled with horror at the knowledge that peaceful and respected citizens had been shot on our public streets.

From this time till a late hour of the night my office was beset by those anxious to ascertain the truth of rumors that a renewal of the difficulties was likely to occur. Near midnight I received from William Prescott Smith, esq., the master of transportation of the Washington and Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, information that he had received a dispatch from President Thomson, of the Pennsylvania road, “that it was impossible to prevent these troops from going through Baltimore; the Union men must be aroused to resist the mob.”

I felt it my duty to communicate this information to his honor Mayor Brown and went to his house for that purpose and made the statement to him. He deemed it all important to confer with His Excellency Governor Hicks and visited him in his chamber.

The governor then sent for me; and in company with the mayor I went to his chamber; and the condition of the city, the dangers of a sanguinary conflict in the event of troops coming to it whilst the public mind was so highly inflamed being fully discussed the governor deemed it proper and agreed with Mayor Brown and myself that the bridges on the roads by which troops would likely come should be destroyed as the only means of impeding them and avoiding the threatened conflict; and the mayor and board of police then issued the order to that effect.

It was in the midst of this excitement while our entire community was laboring under the most intense apprehension-the volunteers, militia and large numbers of the citizens being under arms under the apprehension of a collision, and with the knowledge that the great mass of our citizens looked to myself as the immediate commanding officer (under the board) of armed police for the best protection which under such circumstances could be afforded-in reply to a dispatch from Bradley Johnson, esq. (now or lately the State’s attorney for Frederick County) offering the services of a body of patriotic citizens of that gallant county who true to the instinct of every son of Maryland were ready to come as did their sires in 1814 to defend the homes of their friends in Baltimore, [that] I used the language of the dispatch which is made the pretext for the disgraceful and libelous assault referred to.

What the condition of Baltimore City would be at this time had I failed to execute the order to destroy the bridges referred to by which the troops were arrested at Cockeysville on the morning of Sunday, the 21st of April, instead of coming to the city is too horrible to contemplate and can better be imagined than described.

The strictures in regard to the action of the police in removing flags which were being raised as it is well known not from any patriotic motives but for the sole purpose of exciting riot and disorder are too absurd to require extended notice.

I have the conviction that I have faithfully discharged the duties of the office of marshal of police during the extraordinary excitement which has pervaded this community probably beyond anything of the kind in its previous history, and that the force under my command has been successful in protecting the persons and property of people of the most intensely obnoxious character to another portion of our community from the slightest violence or injury. I feel that I can well afford to endure assault coming from such sources.

It may be proper in this connection to refer to the insinuation so broadly conveyed of complicity on the part of the police in appropriating the property of the Federal Government to improper uses. The charge is untrue. It was taken into the custody of the police solely for the purpose of preserving it, of which the proper notice was given to the authorities of the United States Government in Washington and this city.

Yours, very respectfully,

GEO. P. KANE, Marshal.

* For proceedings of the House concerning the charges against Congressman May, the attack on the Federal troops by a Baltimore mob, and Marshal Kane’s connection therewith, see Congressional Globe for July 18, 1861, pp. 196-202, and subsequent dates.

{p.631}

[Inclosure.]

Statement of Richard Norris, Jr., esq.

To THE BOARD OF POLICE:

In reply to your inquiry I beg leave to state that on Friday, the 19th of April, I accompanied Colonel Kane in a carriage to the President street depot. When we arrived there as well as I recollect there were about fourteen cars filled with troops intended to be passed through Baltimore. They were mostly unarmed and were being attacked by large numbers of the people congregated there. Marshal Kane made every possible effort to protect the troops; caught hold of many of the assailants, drove them back and prevented them from continuing their attacks; addressed others declaring they were bringing disgrace on the city by assailing unarmed men. His whole conduct was perfectly fearless.

It is my sincere belief that but for the manly and energetic course pursued by him many lives would have been lost at the President street station. Words cannot convey my impression of the bravery he exhibited on that occasion or of the security he afforded to the troops. When I arrived at the depot I feared there would be a great loss of life but so far as I have heard all escaped in safety.

R. NORRIS, JR.

–––

Resolution adopted by the House of Representatives July 24, 1861.

Resolved, That the President be requested immediately to communicate to this House if in his judgment not incompatible with the public interest the grounds, reason and evidence upon which the police commissioners of Baltimore were arrested and are now detained as prisoners at Fort McHenry.

–––

WASHINGTON, July 27, 1861.

To THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES:

In answer to the resolution of the House of Representatives of the 24th instant asking grounds, reason and evidence upon which the police-commissioners of Baltimore were arrested and are now detained as prisoners at Fort McHenry I have to state that it is judged to be incompatible with the public interest at this time to furnish the information called for by the resolution.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

–––

[JULY 29, 1861.– For a report of the police board to the General Assembly of Maryland inclosing their memorial to the Congress of the United States, and for the memorial of the mayor and city council of Baltimore to Congress, see Series I, Vol. II, pp. 144-156.]

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF MARYLAND, Fort McHenry, July 29,1861.

Maj. JACOB B. HARDENBERGH, Twentieth Regiment New York State Militia.

MAJOR: You will receive on board the steamer Whitney the following persons, arrested by my predecessor in command of this department and charged with offenses against the Government and laws of {p.632} the United States, viz: R. H. Alvey, John H. Kusick, John W. Davis, Dr. Edward Johnson, T. C. Fitzpatrick, William H. Gatchell, Charles M. Hagelin, Charles Howard, Samuel C. Lyon, James E. Humphrey.

You will take care that all their wants so far as you have the means are supplied and you will also see that they are treated with proper kindness and courtesy. You will proceed without interruption or delay to Fort Lafayette in the harbor of New York and deliver them into the custody of the officer in charge of that fort. You will be held strictly responsible for their safety during the voyage as well as for the orderly conduct of your men. Having executed the delicate and responsible trust confided to you you will land your men in the city of New York and join your regiment in order to be mustered out of the service, reporting yourself for that purpose to Col. H. L. Scott, inspector-general, U. S. army, at the army headquarters, No. 86 Eleventh street.

Respectfully, yours,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

Resolutions offered in the U. S. Senate July 29, 1861.*

Resolved, That the members of the police board of the city of Baltimore ought to be either surrendered to the civil authorities on some charge sufficient in law for their arrest and detention or be discharged from confinement at Fort McHenry and suffered to resume their official functions.

Resolved, That the control of the municipal police of Baltimore ought to be restored to those civil officers to whom by the laws of Maryland it is intrusted.

Resolved, That George P. Kane, marshal of police of the city of Baltimore, ought either to be delivered up to the civil authorities on some charge sufficient in law to hold him in custody or be discharged from confinement in Fort McHenry.

* Offered by Mr. Bayard, of Delaware, as an amendment to a motion of Mr. Trumbull of Illinois, chairman, that the Judiciary Committee be discharged from the further consideration of the memorial of the police commissioners of Baltimore, etc.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Fort Hamilton, N. Y., July 31, 1861.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Asst. Adjt. Gen., Hdqrs. of the Army, Washington City, D. C.

SIR: I have this day received at Fort Lafayette the following named prisoners charged with offenses against the United States Government, viz: R. H. Alvey, John H. Kusick, John W. Davis, Dr. Edward Johnson, T. C. Fitzpatrick, William H. Gatchell, Charles M. Hagelin, Charles Howard, Samuel C. Lyon, James E. Humphrey or Murphrey.

Please inform me if I shall consider them in the same light in the event of a writ of habeas corpus as I do Ruggles and McGuillam and whether I shall make the same return (if required) as I have already done in the case of McGuillam. The prisoners were sent here by order of Maj. Gen. John A. Dix, commanding Department of Maryland.

I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

MARTIN BURKE, Colonel First Artillery, Commanding.

{p.633}

–––

Resolution offered in House of Representatives July 31, 1861.*

Resolved, That the arrest and imprisonment of Charles Howard, William H. Gatchell and John W. Davis and others without warrant and process of law is flagrantly unconstitutional and illegal; and they should without delay be released, or their case remitted to the proper judicial tribunals to be lawfully heard and determined.

* Offered by Mr. May, of Maryland. Speaker Grow decided it to be inadmissible under the rules.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Fort Hamilton, New York Harbor, August 2, 1861.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General, Hdqrs. U. S. Army, Washington.

SIR: Inclosed you will receive a paper marked letter A, and also thirteen letters* written by the State and war prisoners in Fort Lafayette to their friends including one to the honorable Secretary of War** The letters in my opinion are calculated more or less to inflame the public mind of Maryland if published, and I thought it my duty and I thought these transmissions if at all should go through your office. It is my intention if you think it right and desire me to do so to say to those prisoners if they hereafter have any complaint to make with regard to the officers including myself about anything or have any dissatisfaction with regard to quarters or subsistence that if they will put it in writing I will send it to Washington.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

MARTIN BURKE, Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding.

[Indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, August 6, 1861.

Respectfully submitted to the Secretary of War.

These letters are evidently intended for publication and being calculated to inflame the public mind by misrepresentations I recommend that they be returned to the writers.

Respectfully submitted.

WINFIELD SCOTT.

* Not found.

** See paper marked “Sub-inclosure,” p. 634.

[Inclosure A.]

FORT LAFAYETTE, NEW YORK HARBOR, August 1, 1861.

[Bvt. Lieut. Col. MARTIN BURKE.]

COLONEL: I herewith send you twelve letters written by the prisoners received here yesterday from Fort McHenry. In my opinion some of them are of a very inflammatory nature, and if they should find their way into the press of Baltimore as it is evidently the intention of the writers they should it would be detrimental to the Government. Therefore I submit them to your inspection before forwarding them according to their directions. The writers you will see complain of the restrictions placed upon them and of accommodations which they receive. The restrictions are the same as those placed upon the prisoners confined here previous to their arrival and which in my judgment is the only {p.634} means of securing the safety of the prisoners, my command being composed as you are aware entirely of recruits who might be influenced to a departure from their duty if the prisoners were allowed the free use of their money, private communications or interviews with their friends. They are allowed all the liberty that the size, arrangement and situation of the post and the force under my command will admit. Their rooms are precisely the same as those occupied by the officers and privates. In consequence of the scarcity of apartments I am obliged to place twelve soldiers in each room, all of which are cleansed and well ventilated. The requisition made a week ago for blankets, bed-sacks and straw for the use of prisoners was filled to-day and they were supplied with the same. I this day (as directed by you in the presence of the prisoners) caused a requisition to be made for chairs, tables, wash basins and pitchers, plates and other articles necessary for their comfort.

I have placed Mr. Alvey, Mr. Lyon and the three police commissioners in one room, they having made arrangements to provide themselves with meals. The other prisoners who draw rations are in another room. On taking their money from the prisoners I gave to each a receipt for the amount stating that I held it subject to their draft in such amounts as they may require for immediate use. On searching the prisoners who were first received here a revolver and a bowie knife were found upon the person of one of them.

I am, colonel, with respect, your obedient servant,

CHAS. O. WOOD, Second Lieutenant, Ninth Infantry, Commanding Post.

P. S.-Please find herewith a letter addressed to the Hon. S. Cameron, Secretary of War.

C. O. W.

[Sub-inclosure.]

FORT LAFAYETTE, N. Y., August 1, 1861.

Hon. SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.

SIR: After the interview I had with you in Fort McHenry on the 4th ultimo and in view of the assurances you then expressed as to the manner in which I and the gentlemen with me were entitled to be treated during our confinement by the General Government I cannot refrain from expressing my surprise at the condition in which by its orders we now find ourselves.

On Monday evening last we were placed on board the steamer Joseph Whitney with a detachment of soldiers, all information as to our place of destination being positively refused both to us and to the members of our families. Both General Dix and Major Morris, however, gave the most positive assurances that at the place to which we should be taken we would be made much more comfortable and the limits of our confinement would be less restricted than at Fort McHenry.

Yesterday we were landed here and are kept in close custody. No provision whatever had been made here for us and last night we were shut up-eight persons-in a vaulted room or casemate about twenty-four by fourteen feet, having three small windows each about three feet by fourteen inches, and a close wooden door which was shut and locked upon us soon after 9 o’clock and remained so until morning. Some of the party by permission brought on our own bedsteads and bedding with which we had been compelled to supply ourselves at Fort McHenry, {p.635} otherwise we should have been compelled to lie on the bare floor, the officers here stating to us that they had no supplies whatever and could not furnish us even with blankets of the most ordinary kind.

We are distinctly notified that the orders under which the commanding officer of the post is acting require him to impose upon us the following among other restrictions, viz:

We are allowed to receive or forward no letters from or to even our own families unless they are submitted to inspection and perusal by some military officer; no friend can visit us without the express permission of Colonel Burke whose quarters are not at this fort, and no intimation has been given that such permission will be readily granted; we are to receive no newspapers from any quarter; for one hour in the morning and one in the evening only we are to be allowed to take exercise by walking about in a small square not larger than some sixty or seventy feet each way, surrounded on the four sides by the massive buildings of the fort three stories in height.

We were on our arrival here required to surrender all the money we had and all writing-papers and envelopes, our baggage being all searched for these and other articles that might be shown to be considered as contraband. It is unnecessary to give any further details to satisfy you that our condition as to physical comfort is no better than that of the worst felons in any common jail of the country.

Having been arrested and already imprisoned for a month without a charge of any legal offense having been as yet preferred against me or those arrested at the same time with me it is useless to make any further protest to you against the continuance of our confinement. But we do insist as a matter of common right as well as in fulfillment of your own declarations to me that if the Government chooses to exercise its power by restraining us of our liberty it is bound in ordinary decency to make such provision for our comfort and health as gentlemen against whom if charges have been preferred they have not been made known (and all opportunity for an investigation has been denied) are recognized in every civilized community to be entitled to.

It is but just to Colonel Burke and Lieutenant Wood who commands the garrison here that I should add that both of those officers have professed their desire to extend to us all comforts that their instructions will allow and the means at their command will enable them to do. They have, however, each stated that the orders under which they act are imperative and that their supplies of even the most common articles are at present very limited.

I have written this letter on my bed sitting on the floor upon a carpet-bag, there being neither table, chairs, stool nor bench in the room.

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

CHARLES HOWARD.

–––

NEW YORK, August 2, 1861.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND.

SIR: I have reason to believe that a writ of habeas corpus will be taken out for the Baltimore commissioners and I wish by telegraph an answer to my letter* of July 31 immediately.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

MARTIN BURKE, Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding, No. 6 State Street.

* See p. 632.

{p.636}

–––

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, August 2, 1861.

Lieut. Col. MARTIN BURKE, U. S. Army, Commanding, &c., No. 6 State Street, New York City:

Should the writ of habeas corpus come for the production in court of any of your political prisoners you will respond thereto that you deeply regret that pending existing political troubles you cannot comply with the requisition of the honorable judge.

WINFIELD SCOTT.

–––

FORT LAFAYETTE, NEW YORK HARBOR, August 2, 1861.

Bvt. Lieut. Col. M. BURKE, Commanding Forts Hamilton and Lafayette.

COLONEL: To-day the U. S. marshal of this district called at this post and exhibited an order from the President of the United States empowering him to provide all that was necessary for the comfort of the citizen prisoners now confined here. After an examination of their apartments and upon being informed that provisions were being made to make them comfortable he expressed himself pleased with what had been done and that he could not see that anything further was necessary.

I remain, your obedient servant,

CHAS. O. WOOD, Second Lieutenant, Ninth Infantry, Commanding Post.

–––

FORT LAFAYETTE, NEW YORK HARBOR, August 7, 1861.

Hon. S. CAMERON, Secretary of War.

SIR: I addressed a communication yesterday to Colonel Burke which he advises me he has forwarded to Washington. In reply he has written a note to Lieutenant Wood and instructed him to read it to us. The substance of this note was that [as] some of the letters we had written to our families if they were to find their way into the newspapers “might influence the public mind” the colonel had thought it proper to forward them all to the Headquarters of the Army. He further stated that the orders he had received were to treat us kindly but keep us safely.

As to the first point allow me to say that whatever our condition may be the minds of our friends and of all others who may feel any interest in the matter will surely be less apt to be influenced unfavorably toward the Government by knowing the truth about us than they will be by their finding that our communications with them are intercepted and that they are allowed to hear nothing whatever as to how we are treated. They will necessarily conclude that our imprisonment is exactly like that of those who used to be confined in the Bastile (as in fact it is) who were allowed to hold no communications except such as might be entirely agreeable and acceptable to their custodians. They will of course be kept in a state of great anxiety and uneasiness and their sympathies will be constantly excited in our behalf. The distress that will be thus inflicted upon our families can be termed nothing less than cruelty.

In the next place it is hard to conceive how it can be reconciled with anything like the idea of kind treatment to prohibit our reception of {p.637} all newspapers whatsoever or the unrestricted delivery to us without examination of all letters that may be addressed to us whilst it certainly cannot be shown that such prohibitions are at all necessary to insure our “safe keeping.” The examination of and the discretion claimed to retain letters to us from the nearest members of our families as well as the preventing us from receiving newspapers can only be regarded as measures of punishment adopted toward those who have been convicted of no offense, to whom no opportunity has been afforded for an investigation of any charges that may possibly have been preferred against them and for whose arrest as our counsel were assured by General Banks there were no other reasons than the allegations set forth by him in his proclamation, and the continuance of whose confinement he stated to be solely a precautionary measure on the part of the Government. These assurances were given by him at Fort McHenry.

I will add that whatever may be the disposition of the officer commanding the post and of those in this garrison “to treat us kindly” they are restricted in doing so within extremely narrow limits either by other orders they may have received or by the means of extending such treatment not having been supplied to them. We are isolated at a distance of 200 miles from our families and all but a few friends and with these we are permitted to have no intercourse. We are thrown upon our own resources, those of us who may have means being allowed to find at our own cost within the fort decent but very ordinary fare whilst those who cannot in justice to their families afford such expense have nothing but the ordinary rations of the soldier which are of the coarsest kind. In consequence of the delay in other departments of the service in complying with the requisitions the officers here have made we should at this moment though we have been here a week have been without a chair or table but for the courtesy of Lieutenant Sterling, who seeing our state of utter discomfort has loaned to us two chairs from his own quarters, and that of the wife of a sergeant who has lent us a small stand. We are informed, however, that a supply of such articles may be expected for our use from the city this evening.

Finally there are six of us confined in one room precisely similar in all respects to that described in my letter of the 1st instant, to which I beg leave to refer you.

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

CHARLES HOWARD.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, August 8, 1861.

Lieut. Gen. WINFIELD SCOTT, Washington.

GENERAL: This Department having received information to the effect that the late police commissioners of Baltimore now confined at Fort Lafayette, New York Harbor, have taken measures to sue out a writ of habeas corpus I will thank you to direct by telegraph the officer in command there not to obey the writ.*

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

* In answer to this request General Scott repeated his telegram of August 2 to Colonel Burke. See preceding page.

{p.638}

–––

NEW YORK, August 8, 1861.

W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State:

The county judge of Kings County has granted writ of habeas corpus for Baltimore police commissioners returnable Friday at 11. I await instructions.

STEWART L. WOODFORD, Assistant U. S. District Attorney.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, August 8, 1861.

E. DELAFIELD SMITH, Esq., Attorney of the U. S. for the Southern District of New York.

SIR: A telegram having been received from Mr. Woodford to the effect that a writ of habeas corpus has been granted in the case of the Baltimore police commissioners I have to direct you to request the military officer having them in custody not to obey the writ.

I am, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

FORT LAFAYETTE, NEW YORK HARBOR, August 8, 1861.

Lieutenant-General SCOTT, Commander-in-Chief, U. S. A., Hdqrs., Washington, D. C.

SIR: By a letter received last night from Mrs. Howard I learn that in reply to the inquiries she made of you she was informed that I would be “decently lodged and subsisted” here. I wrote to the honorable the Secretary of War on the 1st instant and again yesterday advising him of the treatment which I and my fellow prisoners are receiving. A perusal of those letters would satisfy you that those assurances are not verified. I need here only say that we are not “decently lodged” nor are we in any sense of the words “decently subsisted” by the Government. The only proffer of subsistence made to us has been to feed us like the private soldiers of the garrison or to allow us to procure other meals at our own cost.

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

CHARLES HOWARD.

–––

HEADQUARTERS Fort Hamilton, New York Harbor, August 10, 1861.

Lieut. Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Asst. Adjt. Gen., Hdqrs. of the Army, Washington, D. C.

SIR: I inclose a letter written by one of the prisoners.* I thought it would not be proper to send it without having it first read at Washington. I inclose a copy of a regulation I have made with regard to letter-writing by the prisoners.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

MARTIN BURKE, Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding.

* Letter omitted as unimportant.

{p.639}

[Inclosure.]

MEMORANDUM ORDER.]

HEADQUARTERS, Fort Hamilton, August 10, 1861.

Letters will be forwarded for the prisoners to the heads of departments of the General Government, Washington, and also to the general-in-chief when written in respectful language. In those letters if the prisoners are so disposed they can describe their quarters, subsistence, &c. They may if they deem fit make a statement of their case in respectful language to the persons thus addressed. All other letters should be confined to family and domestic affairs, any wants for himself, or any instructions the prisoner may wish to communicate with regard to his private affairs at home, or familiar letters with relations or friends. Letters containing invidious reflections on the Government or its agents, either civil or military, will not be mailed but will be returned to the writer. It must be understood that the publication of any letter mailed and forwarded for the prisoners in any newspaper no matter what may be the contents will be taken for granted that it is done to create ill-feeling toward the General Government and can be of no service to the writer.

It is desired that in all private letters forwarded by the prisoners the following note will be added in a postscript or otherwise by the writer:

It is my express desire that the contents of this letter or any part of it will not be put in such a situation as to be published in any newspaper.

Gentlemen with funds will pay their own postage; for those without funds the postage will be paid at Fort-Hamilton.

–––

FORT LAFAYETTE, NEW YORK HARBOR, August 12, 1861.

Hon. SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War, Washington, D. C.

SIR: I laid before you a statement of the condition in which I am kept in two former communications-the one on the 1st instant and the other a few days subsequently to which I beg leave to refer-and I should not again trouble you had I not since my last learned on the direct authority of Lieutenant-General Scott that an order has been given by the Department of State that the political prisoners confined at Fort Lafayette shall be “decently lodged and subsisted unless they prefer to provide for themselves.”

The decent lodging furnished us consists in putting seven gentlemen to sleep in the one room of which I have before given you a description. Within this or at the door of it we are required to remain except during two hours in the day or whilst taking our meals.

The decent subsistence offered us in the alternative of our declining or not having the means to provide for ourselves is much inferior in many respects to that furnished to convicted felons in the Baltimore penitentiary and jail, and so far as I am informed in any well-regulated prison in the country. The officers here advise us that this is the only fare which under the instructions given and the means allowed to them by the Government they can offer.

{p.640}

How far such treatment is in accordance with the instructions of the Government as expressed by the Department of State and with the assurance given to me personally by yourself or with the promises voluntarily made by Maj. Gen. John A. Dix and Maj. William W. Morris I leave it, sir, for you to judge.

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

CHARLES HOWARD.

–––

FORT HAMILTON, N. Y., August 12, 1861.

Lieut. Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army.

SIR: There is an attachment issued for my person for refusing to obey the writ of habeas corpus issued for the bodies of the Baltimore police commissioners confined at Fort Lafayette. The following is the copy of a telegram just sent by me to General Scott:

FORT HAMILTON, N. Y., August 12, 1861.

Lieutenant-General SCOTT, U. S. Army:

There is an attachment issued for my person and it is reported that a posse will try to execute the writ and take the prisoners from Fort Lafayette. Shall I resist or what course shall I pursue?

MARTIN BURKE, Colonel.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, [Washington,] August 12, 1861.

Col. MARTIN BURKE, U. S. Army, Fort Hamilton:

Hold your prisoners to the extent of all your means of defense.

WINFIELD SCOTT.

–––

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, August 13, 1861.

Hon. SECRETARY OF WAR.

SIR: Lieut. Col. Martin Burke, U. S. Army, has been assigned to the command of Forts Hamilton and Lafayette for the purpose of supervising the safe custody of the political prisoners and prisoners of war confined in the latter fort. In accordance with the wishes of the honorable Secretary of State instructions of which the inclosed are copies have already been given in relation to the said prisoners. I beg leave to suggest that the letters written by the prisoners to their friends having a political rather than a military bearing should be sent to the Department of State for examination to ascertain whether they may be properly forwarded to their address, or if not what should be done with them. Applications for permission to visit the prisoners should be submitted it is supposed to the same Department.

I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

WINFIELD SCOTT.

{p.641}

[Inclosure No. 1.]

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, August 2, 1861.

Lieut. Col. MARTIN BURKE, U. S. Army, Commanding, &c, No. 6 State Street, New York City:

Should the writ of habeas corpus come for the production in court of any of your political prisoners you will respond thereto that you deeply regret that pending existing political troubles you cannot comply with the requisition of the honorable judge.

WINFIELD SCOTT.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

HEADQUARTERS, August 12, 1861-10.15 p.m.

Lieut. Col. MARTIN BURKE, Fort Hamilton, N. Y.

Your telegram is received. You will resist any attempt to take your State prisoners. You will resist any attempt to take your person on a writ of attachment.

WINFIELD SCOTT.

–––

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, August 13, 1861.

Col. HENRY L. SCOTT, Inspector-General, Commanding, &c, New York:

Fort Lafayette is threatened with an attack by the sheriff and his posse to seize Colonel Burke. Send him a re-enforcement of some companies of volunteers which have been mustered into service without delay.

WINFIELD SCOTT.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, August 16, 1861.

Lieut. Gen. WINFIELD SCOTT.

GENERAL: In returning herewith the letters addressed to yourself and the Secretary of War by Mr. Howard* I have the honor to state that I do not perceive any objection to the political prisoners at Fort Lafayette being allowed to receive and dispatch unsealed communications nor to their being permitted to purchase at their own expense such newspapers as may be for sale in New York.

I am, general, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

* Howard to Scott, p. 638; Howard to Cameron, p. 639.

–––

FORT LAFAYETTE, NEW YORK HARBOR, August 19, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.

SIR: My family were informed by Lieutenant-General Scott under date of the 3d instant that an order had been given “by the Department {p.642} of State that the political prisoners confined at Fort Lafayette shall be decently lodged and subsisted unless they prefer to provide for themselves.” About the same time I was advised by Lieutenant-Colonel Burke, commanding this post, that his instructions were “to treat us kindly but keep us safely.”

I beg leave, sir, to inform you that your order has not been complied with. It cannot be considered a “decent lodging” to put a number of gentlemen accustomed to the comforts of life to sleep in one low-vaulted room, in or at the door of which they are confined except for two hours in the twenty-four. The number sleeping in the room in which I am now placed has varied from five to seven. There are now here six of us.

The only subsistence provided for us by the Government as the alternative of our providing for ourselves has been the proffer of the single ration distributed here to the private soldier which is inferior both in quantity and quality to the fare furnished to the convicted felons in many of the jails and penitentiaries throughout the country.

And this is the “decent subsistence” offered to men who have been arrested and are held on suspicion only, and who have not ceased to demand an open investigation of any charges that may possibly have been preferred against them-a demand which has been persistently denied.

I have no grounds for imputing to Colonel Burke or the officers of this garrison any intentional disposition to treat us unkindly; but acting as they state themselves to be in obedience to the orders which they have received we are subjected to various harsh and arbitrary restrictions which are utterly irreconcilable with the idea of kind “treatment,” whilst they are equally unnecessary for the insuring of our safe-keeping.

I deem it useless at present to go more into details as I have already described the condition in which we are placed in three communications to the honorable the Secretary of War on the 1st, 7th and 12th instant respectively and in one to Lieutenant-General Scott on the 8th instant, of none of which does any notice appear to have been taken.

Should you, sir, however desire a fuller statement than I have here made to be addressed directly to yourself one shall be forwarded as soon as I may be apprised of your wishes.

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

CHARLES HOWARD.

–––

FORT HAMILTON, NEW YORK HARBOR, August 27, 1861.

Lieut. Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Asst. Adjt. Gen., Hdqrs. of the Army, Washington City, D. C..

SIR: in forwarding to the general-in-chief through you the communication of Lieutenant Wood, commanding Fort Lafayette, in continuation I will add that the request of the lieutenant-general (as everything coming from him) was attended to with marked respect. When the general-in-chief gave permission that Mrs. Howard with Mr. Benjamin Howard should visit Mr. Howard in prison I sent the officer of the day over with her.

Mr. Howard has ever been treated courteously by my officers. Upon his solicitation I believe newspapers were allowed to the prisoner. This of course was kind and proper. His family and that of Mrs. Howard {p.643} have been revolutionary and patriotic (with due respect to the highest authority). So far as my faculties can conceive Mr. Howard is no more above the law than any one of the nine pirates* put in prison on the 26th instant by the honorable the Secretary of the Navy. With regard to the life of an officer it does not amount to much; but if Mr. Howard can in a post under my command put on aristocratic airs and threaten my life why is this not a good precedent to shoot down my officer in command (and there is none better in the service in his grade) and take possession of the fort? However the attempt would be a bloody business. This is a simple case to be decided upon by my superiors. They have the facts and data to go upon.

When I received the mayor of Washington, apparently a very clever man, and upon his stating that he had not a hostile feeling against the Government, which may or may not be so, I stated in effect to him that doubtless the Government in time would take in this and consider leniently his case, but I told him that a Government with 100,000 victorious troops within four-days’ march of Washington would have to act upon the law of self-preservation.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

MARTIN BURKE, Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding.

* The Confederate Privateersmen

[Inclosure.]

FORT LAFAYETTE, NEW YORK HARBOR, August 27, 1861.

Col. M. BURKE, Commanding Forts Hamilton and Lafayette.

COLONEL: While in the room occupied by the police commissioners I heard John W. Davis, one of the commissioners, make use of the following language, viz: That Colonel Burke had outlawed himself toward him in not obeying the writ of habeas corpus; that he (Colonel Burke) was depriving him of his liberty, and so help him God if he ever got out of this place he would deprive him (Colonel Burke) of his life; that he would shoot him on sight and take the consequences. Some one told him that he was foolish; that Colonel Burke had nothing to do with it that he was only obeying the orders of General Scott. Mr. Davis said that Colonel Burke had no right to obey an order which was in violation of the laws of the land and he would hold him responsible for his confinement.

I am, colonel, with respect, your obedient servant,

CHAS. O. WOOD, Second Lieutenant, Ninth Infantry.

–––

HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY, Washington, August 27, 1861.

Lieut. Col. MARTIN BURKE, U. S. Army, Commanding, &c., Fort Hamilton, New York:

Allow no writs to be served on you for any of the prisoners under your charge. Give the same answer as heretofore.

WINFIELD SCOTT.

{p.644}

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., September 3, 1861.

Hon. GEORGE WILLIAM BROWN, Mayor of the City of Baltimore.

SIR: Reasons of state which I deem imperative demand that the payment of compensation to the members of the old city police-who were by a resolution of the board of police commissioners dated the 27th of June last declared to be “off duty,” and whose places were filled in pursuance of an order of Major-General Banks of the same date-should cease. I therefore direct by virtue of the authority vested in me as commanding officer of the military forces of the United States in Baltimore and its vicinity that no further payment be made to them. Independently of all other considerations the continued compensation of a body of men who have been superseded in their functions by the order of the Government is calculated to bring its authority into disrespect, and the extraction from the citizens of Baltimore by taxation in a time of general depression and embarrassment of a sum amounting to several hundred thousand dollars a year for the payment of nominal officials who render it no service cannot fail by creating widespread dissatisfaction to disturb the quietude of the city which I am most anxious to preserve. I feel assured that the payment would have been voluntarily discontinued by yourself as a violation of the principle on which all compensation is bestowed as a remuneration for an equivalent service actually performed had you not considered yourself bound by existing laws to make it. This order will relieve you from the embarrassment and I do not doubt that it will be complied with.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

FORT LAFAYETTE, September 22, 1861.

GEORGE W. PORTER, Esq., Superintendent Reading-Rooms.

MY DEAR SIR: You will oblige me by paying to Mr. Sperry the quarter’s rent due for reading-rooms on the 30th instant on that day as I have an important payment due on the 1st that must be met. Also pay him what you can on account of fees for auction sales on that day.

Make my kind regards to such friends who visit “Change” as may manifest real interest and say to them that I demand a trial and to have an opportunity of confronting the scoundrels who preferred the charges against me before the grand jury. Mr. Hopkins and other gentlemen who I learn deprecate now the burning of the bridges should recollect but for that act there would scarcely be a house standing in Baltimore. The approaching troops from Pennsylvania that arrived twenty-four hours after would have been set upon and slaughtered by an infuriated populace beyond any power of mine to protect them-as efficient as was my force-and the whole North would have retaliated and taken full revenge.

I glory in every act of mine connected with my administration and particularly in those connected with the occurrences at that time; and if any portion of that conduct is treason the Government or the {p.645} Know-Nothing church-burning clubs of Baltimore with their ladies and friends may convict and hang me as high as Haman before-I will recant a word uttered or regret a deed done at that time.

Your friend,

GEORGE P. KANE.

N. B.-I am suffering much from the effects of the fever still. It is a regulation and my request that no portion of this letter be made public or given to a newspaper. Writing is a difficult thing here.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, September 25, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore, Md.

GENERAL: No sooner is the conspiracy against the Government defeated than under a natural law of the human mind sympathy begins to rise in behalf of the agents of the crime held under duress. Among the prisoners recently arrested Mayor Brown is represented as having been harmless, unoffending and even loyal. Relying implicitly on your discernment and discretion I have to ask your opinion concerning the mayor and the reasonableness or unreasonableness of releasing him.

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

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md September 25, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: A strong application is to be made to you for the release of Mayor Brown. He is a man of great amiability of character, behaved very well during the outbreak on the 19th of April and I think has been the dupe rather than the willing accomplice of such men as Wallis and Scott. I inclose letters from two of the most respectable gentlemen in Boston,* both of whom you probably know. Doctor Shattuck is a man of great wealth and a warm-supporter of the administration. I have also a letter from Mr. Sauerwein, of Baltimore, one of the most intelligent and stern of the Union men in the city, who suggests that the mayor should resign his office and take the oath of allegiance and on these conditions be discharged from custody. Mr. Forbes suggests further that he should be required to reside in Boston at present. This I have no doubt he would readily consent to do as he has relatives and friends there and the political atmosphere of the place might be useful to him. But if he resigns his office there can be no possible objection to his return to this city. He accepted the office of mayor unwillingly and will be glad to retire to domestic life. Should the Government think proper to release him on any or all of these conditions I respectfully suggest that it may be done confidentially through me.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

P. S.-Since the foregoing was written your communication of the 25th has come to hand.

* Only one inclosure found.

{p.646}

[Inclosure.]

BOSTON, September 23, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore.

MY DEAR SIR: I take the liberty of thus addressing you in the midst of your numerous and responsible duties in reference to my brother-in-law, Mr. George William Brown. There are especial reasons in his health and that of his wife why confinement and separation from his family are very prejudicial. He has had symptoms of kidney disease. Deprivation of fresh air and exercise, confinement in a casemate, are likely very much to aggravate his complaints. His wife has had symptoms of heart disease so as to inspire anxiety in her friends and she has already suffered much since her husband was a candidate for the office of mayor. The forcible detention of and separation from her husband are very unfavorable to her health.

I have not the least disposition to complain of Mr. Brown’s arrest. The fact of the great importance of having as mayor of the city of Baltimore one heartily in sympathy with the Government is to me a sufficient reason why a mayor who does not look upon this war as a necessity forced upon the Government by its enemies cannot be allowed to hold the office. Supposing that such views may have led to Mr. Brown’s arrest would not his release on parole be consistent with the public welfare? In this way imprisonment, imminent risk of life and health to two excellent persons with a large family of children dependent upon them would be averted. If necessary or desirable he and his family could spend the next six months in Boston.

Would it be of any use for me to make an appeal or a statement of these facts to the Secretary of War or go to Washington for this purpose? I wish also to thank you for your courteous treatment of Mr. and Mrs. Brown of which I have heard in letters from Mr. Brown and his children. Whilst his family are not reconciled to the action of the Government they speak of your courtesy and gentleness in the execution of its orders.

Some years have passed since I have had the pleasure of seeing you and in that interval he whose name I bear and on whose account I am bold thus to intrude upon you has been taken to his rest. He may well now be accounted happy in having been taken from the evils to come. And yet if we now on the active stage of life can be true and loyal, faithful and steadfast whether in high offices of trust and responsible situations or as private citizens it seems to me that at the end we may not have cause to regret that our lot has been cast in these perilous and troubled times.

With respect and regard, very truly yours,

GEO. C. SHATTUCK.

–––

FORT LAFAYETTE, NEAR NEW YORK, September 25, 1861.

General JAMES M. ANDERSON.

My DEAR GENERAL: I received your kind note this moment containing Mrs. Kane’s check for $20 and informing me of the satisfactory condition of my family.

We are very ignorant of the condition of things in Baltimore except what we glean from the filthy and corrupt press of New York. We occasionally get a glance at the Baltimore Sun which seems to contain {p.647} nothing of public interest but rehashes of the abominable falsehoods manufactured by Fulton of the American, and other Abolition instruments of the Associated Press. Please ask Abell for me whether it would not be as well and still within the compass of the shackles which I suppose have been put upon his press to omit the circulation of such abominable trash.

I write this in a spirit of kindness but assure you that it is deeply mortifying to all Marylanders even in the condition of people situated as we are in prison to find papers professing to be independent and whose editors are known not to be necessitated by want of bread to be made to appear to the world as sycophants and cowards. Scarcely a paper reaches us but what contains telegrams known to be false and libelous upon the motives and acts of those who by consanguinity and interest are identified with Maryland people.

Our condition here is a hard one for gentlemen who have lived as we have but I have good reason to believe that Colonel Burke with all that has been said is in no way chargeable with the unnecessary restrictions placed upon us. I am in no way broken down in spirits though I must confess that I am greatly exercised in mind at times by the condition of my fellow-citizens of Baltimore, which I can easily imagine from the names of the murdering villains who I perceive have again raised their heads and even flourish in place and power.

I desire to be affectionately remembered to Mrs. A. and family and to all friends.

As ever, yours sincerely,

GEORGE P. KANE.

P. S.-It is my request and a regulation of the post that no portion of this letter be published in the newspapers.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, September 27, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Fort McHenry, Baltimore.

GENERAL: If you think that George William Brown ought to be released upon his taking the oath of allegiance, resigning the office of mayor and residing in some one of the Northern cities for a time and if you think also that he would accede to these conditions you will please take such proceedings as you suppose necessary to have the propositions made by him to yourself. I shall not act in any of the cases without [your] advice.

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

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 5, 1861.

ROBERT MURRAY, Esq., U. S. Marshal, New York.

SIR: I transmit a copy of a letter of the 30th ultimo addressed to the President by George P. Kane from Fort Lafayette setting forth inconveniences attending his confinement which should it seems to me be remedied so far as this may be practicable compatibly with his safekeeping.

I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

{p.648}

[Inclosure.]

FORT LAFAYETTE, NEW YORK BAY, September 30, 1861.

His Excellency the PRESIDENT.

SIR: I have the honor to submit to Your Excellency for consideration the following statement of facts:

On the 27th of June last I was taken from my bed at my dwelling in the city of Baltimore about 3 o’clock in the morning by an armed body of about 1,000 or 1,200 men and conveyed to Fort McHenry. The officers commanding the military referred to had no warrant for and as they informed me did not know the cause of my arrest. General Banks informed my counsel that I was not taken on any specific charge but merely detained as an act of military precaution, and also requested the commanding officer of Fort McHenry to make the same statement to me and that it was done by a special command of Your Excellency.

Whilst at that post I contracted the fever resulting from the malaria incident to that locality at certain seasons with which I suffered for upwards of a month, and whilst still laboring under its effects was transferred to this place. On my arrival here notwithstanding my debilitated condition I was placed in a casemate on the ground floor paved with brick with just space enough for my bed between the gun by my side and the partition of the apartment in which have been incarcerated with me as many as between thirty and forty other prisoners at the same time thus rendering the atmosphere most offensive and pestiferous.

Among other effects of the fever increased by my present confinement I am suffering with prostration of the bowels and required to repair to the only convenience for the purpose by the seaside outside of the fort ten and twelve times in the twenty-four hours in all kinds of weather. I am locked in my prison room from 6 p.m. till 6 a.m. and only allowed to take with me one tumbler of water for use during that period. Whilst suffering great agony from the promptings of nature and effects of my debility I am frequently kept for a long time at the door of my cell waiting for permission to go to the water-closet owing to the utter indifference of some of my keepers to the ordinary demands of humanity. I am compelled to obtain at my own expense the mere substantial provisions which I require because the fare prescribed for the State prisoners is not fit for one in full health much less for a person in my present condition.

These facts were brought to the notice of the U. S. marshal of this district who in company with the chief (Kennedy) of the New York police visited the fort about a week ago, both of whom pronounced my lodgings entirely unsuitable and contrary to your instructions and that both fare and lodgings should be changed, since which I have heard nothing on the subject.

Believing that such treatment as I have received cannot meet with the sanction of the President of the United States I have deemed it proper to address you this communication with the view of respectfully inviting your attention to the facts referred to.

I am, very respectfully, sir, your most obedient servant,

GEORGE P. KANE.

{p.649}

–––

FORT LAFAYETTE, October 8, 1861.

His Excellency the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES.

SIR: The undersigned, prisoners confined in Fort Lafayette, are compelled to address you this protest and remonstrance against the inhumanity of their confinement and treatment.

The officers in command at Fort Hamilton and this post being fully aware of the grievances and privations to which we are obliged to submit we are bound for humanity’s sake to presume that they have no authority or means to redress or remove them. They in fact assure us that they have not. Our only resource therefore is to lay this statement before you in order that you may interpose to prevent our being any longer exposed to them.

The prisoners at this post are confined in four small casemates and two large battery rooms. The former are about fourteen feet in breadth by twenty-four or thereabouts in length, with arched ceilings about eight or eight and a half feet high at the highest point, the spring of the arch commencing at about five feet from the floor. In each of these is a fireplace and the floors are of plank. The battery rooms are of considerably higher pitch but the floors are of brick and a large space is occupied in them by the heavy guns and gun carriages of the batteries. They have no fireplaces or means of protection from cold or moisture and the doors are large like those of a carriage-house rendering the admission of light impossible without entire exposure to the temperature and weather without.

In one of the small casemates twenty-three prisoners are confined-two-thirds of them in irons-without beds, bedding or any of the commonest necessaries. Their condition could hardly be worse if they were in a slave ship on the middle passage. In each of two out of the three other casemates ten gentlemen are imprisoned; in the third there are nine and a tenth is allotted to it, their beds and necessary luggage leaving them scarce space enough to move and rendering the commonest personal cleanliness almost an impossibility.

The doors are all fastened from 6 or thereabouts in the evening until the same hour in the morning, and with all the windows (which are small) left open in all weathers it is barely possible to sleep in the foul and unwholesome air.

Into one of the larger battery rooms there also thirty-four prisoners closely crowded; into the other thirty-five. All the doors are closed for the same period as stated above and the only ventilation is then from the embrasures and so imperfect that the atmosphere is offensive and almost stifling. Even during the day three of the doors of one of these apartments are kept closed against the remonstrance of the medical men who are among the inmates and to the utter exclusion of wholesome and necessary light and air.

In damp weather all these unhealthy annoyances and painful discomforts are of course greatly augmented, and where as to-day the prisoners are compelled by rain to continue within doors their situation becomes almost intolerable.

The undersigned do not hesitate to say that no intelligent inspector of prisons can fail to pronounce their accommodations as wretchedly deficient and altogether incompatible with health, and it is obvious as we already feel that the growing inclemencies of the season which is upon us must make our condition more and more nearly unendurable.

Many of the prisoners are men advanced in life; many more are of infirm health or delicate constitutions. The greater portion of them {p.650} have been accustomed to the reasonable comforts of life none of which are accessible to them here and their liability to illness is of course proportionately greater on that account. Many have already suffered seriously from indisposition augmented by the restrictions imposed on them. A contagious cutaneous disease is now spreading in one of the larger apartments and the physicians who are among us are positive that some serious general disorder must be the inevitable result if our situation remains unimproved.

The use of any but salt water except for drinking has been for some time altogether denied to us. The cistern water itself for some days past has been filled with dirt and animalcules and the supply even of this has been so low that yesterday we were almost wholly without drinking water. A few of us who have the means to purchase some trifling necessaries have been able to relieve ourselves from this latter privation to some extent by procuring an occasional though greatly inadequate supply of fresh water from the Long Island side.

It only remains to add that the fare is of the commonest and coarsest soldiers’ rations almost invariably ill-prepared and ill-cooked. Some of us who are better able than the rest are permitted to take our meals at a private mess supplied by the wife of the ordnance sergeant for which we pay at the rate of a dollar per day from our own funds. Those who are less fortunate are compelled to submit to a diet so bad and unusual as to be seriously prejudicial to their health.

The undersigned have entered into these partial details because they cannot believe that it is the purpose of the Government to destroy their health or sacrifice their lives by visiting them with such cruel hardships, and they will hope until forced to a contrary conclusion that it can only be necessary to present the facts to you plainly in order to receive the necessary relief.

We desire to say nothing here in regard to the justice or injustice of our imprisonment but we respectfully insist upon our right to be treated with decency and common humanity so long as the Government sees fit to confine us.

Commending the matter to your earliest consideration and prompt interference, we are,

Your obedient servants,

[Signed by Charles Howard, George P. Kane, George William Brown, William H. Gatchell, John W. Davis, Henry M. Warfield and seventy-four other State prisoners.]

–––

-On the 14th of October, 1861, the following letter was handed to the prisoners by Lieutenant Wood, commanding Fort Lafayette:-

FORT HAMILTON, N. Y., October 10, 1861.

Lieutenant WOOD, Commanding Fort Lafayette.

SIR: I am directed by Colonel Burke to say to you that you can inform the prisoners that their petition has been forwarded through Colonel Townsend to the President of the United States.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. C. LAY, First Lieutenant, Twelfth Infantry.

{p.651}

–––

NEW YORK, October 8, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washington.

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 5th instant inclosing a copy of a letter dated the 30th ultimo addressed to the President of the United States by George P. Kane from Fort Lafayette setting forth the inconvenience of his confinement, &c. In your letter you express a wish that the same may be remedied as far as the same is practicable with his safe-keeping.

I have no hesitation in saying that from reliable information received by me as regards his health I consider a change from Fort Lafayette to Fort Columbus would be of benefit to him and I do not consider his safe custody would be endangered by his transfer there. You must be aware it is a very difficult matter as a general thing for me to advise in these cases as almost every prisoner confined in Fort Lafayette would endeavor upon some pretext to have his quarters changed.

Very respectfully, yours,

ROBERT MURRAY, U. S. Marshal.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 9, 1861.

ROBERT MURRAY, Esq., U. & Marshal, New York.

SIR: You will please transfer the prisoner George P. Kane from Fort Lafayette to Fort Columbus.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., October 9, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I learn from Doctor Shattuck, Mayor Brown’s brother-in-law, that he and his friends think he cannot resign the office of mayor without a virtual confession that he has been disloyal to the Government. But Doctor Shattuck proposes that he shall be permitted to go to New England on his parole of honor not to leave there without permission of the Government. If before the 10th of January he shall not have received the permission of the Government to return to Baltimore he shall be allowed to surrender himself into custody at such place as may be designated. Doctor Shattuck adds:

I would like his bounds to be the New England States because he has a sister in New Hampshire with whom another sister is now staying. Both these ladies are strong for the Union. His second son is going to Saint Paul’s school at Concord, N. H., and I should like him free to visit at those places. He can convince himself that throughout New England the sober, sensible, intelligent people are acting under a conviction that this war must be carried on vigorously and heartily; that the South gives us no choice. Can I have permission to see him again? I may be in New York early next week and his little daughter with me. Would she be allowed to go with me? I hope to get a favorable answer from Mr. Brown without seeing him a second time but the influence of his fellow prisoners about him may be adverse and prevail and I may wish to have another conversation with him.

{p.652}

In regard to Mayor Brown’s resignation the election of to-day will decide whether it will be of any consequence. The presiding officer of the first branch of common council officiates during the absence of the mayor from the city. We elect the members to-day and are confident of a triumphant result.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 11, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Fort McHenry, Baltimore.

GENERAL: If you approve Mr. Brown may be released on taking the oath and giving his parole not to do any act or hold any correspondence treasonable or injurious to the Union, and not to enter the State of Maryland or any insurrectionary State during the insurrection. These restraints to be removed only by direction of the Secretary of State.

I am, general, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Fort Columbus, N. Y., October 12, 1861.

Hon. F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.

SIR: I received yesterday from the [U. S.] marshal Kane, the ex-police marshal of Baltimore. I have allowed Marshal Kane to quarter with the prisoners of war captured at Hatteras Inlet he giving his parole the same as the war prisoners.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

G. LOOMIS, Colonel Fifth Infantry, Commanding.

–––

FORT WARREN, BOSTON HARBOR, October 22, 1862.

SECRETARY OF WAR:

I am requested to visit Boston to see a dear friend in Boston who is not expected to live many hours. Will you telegraph Colonel Dimick to permit me to go if satisfied of the facts. Please reply by telegraph at once.

GEO. P. KANE, Prisoner.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 23, 1861.

ROBERT MURRAY, Esq., U. S. Marshal, New York.

SIR: Complaints still come that the comforts which might be allowed the prisoners at Fort Lafayette are not enjoyed by them. Although these complaints have their origin in reports which arose before you went there to look after the comfort of the prisoners you will proceed again to the fort and remedy what admits of remedy.

{p.653}

It is complained of now that Marshal Kane is denied a requisite supply of air and exercise at Fort Columbus. Please have this complaint removed as far as is possible consistently with the circumstances of his confinement.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

FORT LAFAYETTE, October 23, 1861.

Col. M. BURKE, U. S. Army, Commanding Fort Hamilton.

SIR: I have felt called upon to address a communication to the honorable the Secretary of War in which I make charges against yourself and Lieut. C. O. Wood, in command at this fort, in reference to your and his conduct toward myself and the other prisoners here confined. I transmit the same to you herewith,* requesting that it may be forwarded with as little delay as practicable.

I am, your obedient servant,

CHARLES HOWARD.

* Inclosure to Burke’s letter of October 25, post.

–––

FORT LAFAYETTE, October 23, 1861.

Lieutenant-Colonel BURKE.

SIR: Lieutenant Wood has communicated to me the contents of your note to him of this date.* Permit me to say in reply to your allusions to the course I have thought proper to pursue that you mistake me much if you suppose as you seem to do that a mere desire to embarrass or annoy you or the officers under you has prompted me to write the letters which have been returned to me. The fact that little or nothing has been done to make me or my fellow prisoners decently comfortable is self-evident to any one who chooses to inspect our quarters and it was on that account that I chose to speak in terms of indignant denunciation of those who are responsible for the privations I suffer. If I made or sought to make the officers of the garrison the instruments to convey my complaints it was because I am denied any other alternative. The invidious allusions which you have deemed it necessary to make in regard to me I need not and do not propose now to discuss but you will permit me to remind you that if you have duties to discharge I have rights to vindicate. The only one of these which has not been absolutely destroyed is the right of free speech within the narrow bounds of my prison and this it is my duty and purpose to defend to the last. In the exercise of this poor privilege I wrote the letters which I knew would pass through your hands. As you have forwarded to the adjutant-general the correspondence between Lieutenant Wood and yourself I beg that you will do me the justice to forward also this note.

I remain, your obedient servant,

F. K. HOWARD.

* Not found.

{p.654}

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Fort Hamilton, New York Harbor, October 24, 1861.

Lieutenant WOOD, Commanding Fort Lafayette.

SIR: Please say to Mr. Howard that I cheerfully forward his note of the 23d instant to Colonel Townsend agreeably to his request. However much the efforts of the Government have fallen short of the expectations of the prisoners to make them as comfortable as they may desire still I must say that every exertion is being made by the Government for that purpose and such exertions will certainly be continued.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

MARTIN BURKE, Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Army.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Fort Hamilton, New York Harbor, October 25, 1861.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

SIR: Inclosed please find a letter from one of the prisoners at Fort Lafayette in which he makes what he is pleased to call charges against myself and Lieutenant Wood. The only charge against me is that I have not visited Fort Lafayette personally to inspect the condition of that fortress and its inhabitants. The cause of my absence will be fully explained by E. Delafield Smith, esq., U. S. district attorney for this district, and is one which has not only prevented me from visiting Fort Lafayette but has kept me closely within these walls to my great personal inconvenience and discomfort. I am happy to have learned from Mr. Smith within a few days that I shall probably shortly have more liberty. Independently of this, however, I would not have had much time for personal inspection of Fort Lafayette as my position requires that between 100 and 200 letters to and from the prisoners should be daily inspected under my own supervision-a task which I could never complete even with the assistance of the officer General Scott was kind enough to allow me were it not for the voluntary services of several of the gentlemen of the Twelfth Infantry.

With regard to the conduct of Lieutenant Wood, who has charge of Fort Lafayette, I know of no part of it which could justify Mr. Howard in his charges. What offense the commanding officer of this post can have committed against the Howard family he is utterly at a loss to say unless it be a kind and courteous remark introduced by him in his letter of instructions to Mr. Wood, a copy of which has been furnished you, and which was intended merely as a gratuitous mark of respect for a distinguished family of his native State.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

MARTIN BURKE, Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding.

[Inclosure.]

FORT LAFAYETTE, October 2d, 1861.

Hon. SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War, Washington, D. C.

SIR: The orderly sergeant has this morning by order of the commanding officer of this post read to me in presence of a number of persons a letter from Col. Martin Burke to Lieut. C. O. Wood written {p.655} in reply to a communication from the lieutenant to him. Copies of both of these letters* Colonel Burke states he has forwarded to Washington. I have asked for a copy of the colonel’s letter but have not learned whether it will be given. In that letter which is obviously intended as a rebuke to some of those confined here Colonel Burke has undertaken to allude to the character and standing which my family have borne for the purpose of introducing an offensive imputation that one member of it has acted in a manner unbecoming a gentleman. This charge I claim the right distinctly and directly to repudiate and I have also to demand that an inquiry be made under your authority into the conduct of Colonel Burke and of Lieutenant Wood in relation to their treatment of those confined at this place.

I now formally charge Colonel Burke with conduct unbecoming an officer and also with neglect of duty. He has not so far as any prisoner here is aware been within this fort since on or about the 5th day of August last and in undertaking to judge of Lieutenant Wood’s manner of discharging his duties toward the prisoners under his charge he must have acted upon the statements of that officer himself. The surgeon of the post and one other officer from Fort Hamilton have occasionally exchanged a few words with some of the prisoners; but whenever any of the latter have attempted to make any representations to them of our condition and treatment both of those officers have declared that these matters were not in any manner within the sphere of their duties.

There has therefore been no inspection of this prison in which upwards of 100 persons are confined which would enable Colonel Burke to judge of the accuracy of the reports which he may have received. In the absence of all such means of knowledge or information Colonel Burke has stated in an official letter that Lieutenant Wood, an officer under his command, has “devoted his whole time to promoting the comfort of prisoners here” or words to the same effect. This statement I charge to be not warranted by the facts and to be entirely incorrect. I charge and aver that Lieutenant Wood has not only not devoted all or even much of his time to the promoting of our comfort, but that on the contrary he has neither in his general bearing nor in his conduct toward those consigned to his custody paid that attention to their comfort which even under the circumstances which the Government deemed sufficient to warrant their imprisonment they have a right to demand.

The immediate cause of the rebuke attempted to be administered to us by Colonel Burke was a letter Written to a friend by Mr. F. K. Howard, may son. However strong may have been the language used in that letter it was the natural expression of feelings which are shared by every prisoner here whose opinion I have heard. Among these are many gentlemen of high character and standing in the country. No intimation has been given by Colonel Burke that any specific fact stated in the letter was not true. Should he controvert a single one my relations to the writer of the letter and the mention made by Colonel Burke in his official communication of my family to say nothing of the assurances voluntarily tendered to me by you in Fort McHenry as to the mode in which the Government considered me as entitled to be treated justify me in demanding an opportunity to substantiate it.

Having already addressed to you three communications from this place of which no notice appears to have been taken I should not {p.656} again have troubled you but that the issue I have now to make with Colonel Burke involves matters of a personal character to myself and that I make direct charges against him and Lieutenant Wood derogatory to their official positions as officers of the Army. I hope therefore I may not be mistaken in trusting that this communication may receive your early and serious attention.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

CHARLES HOWARD.

* See Volume II, this Series, case of F. Key Howard, for these letters.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 29, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore, Md.

GENERAL: I herewith inclose a letter received at this Department from George P. Kane which I will thank you to read and return to me with such suggestions or comments as you may deem proper.

I have the honor to be, general, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

[Inclosure.]

FORT COLUMBUS, N. Y., October 26, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washington.

SIR: I have the honor to state that Colonel Loomis of this post called on me to-day with your letter to Marshal Murray asking to be informed if your instructions in regard to extending certain comforts to State prisoners and referring to myself by name had been obeyed.

I informed Colonel L. that as the specified subject of his inquiry I had no complaint to make. The quarters assigned me by Colonel L. are I presume as good as he has at his disposal in the barracks and permission is given me to take the air in a large part of the island, and I am in all respects more comfortable than at Lafayette at which place my treatment was characterized by an utter and disgraceful disregard of the common dictates of humanity and not at all in accordance with the instructions which you had caused to be issued to the marshal a copy of which was furnished to me on leaving Fort McHenry.

No arrangement has been made for my board on this island and but for the courtesy of some fellow prisoners I should have to live on the rations of the Government in the state in which they are issued. This I presume is the neglect of the marshal. I have been a prisoner for four months and owing to the delay in obtaining an amount due to me from the United States Government my private affairs have suffered much, and my confinement precluding me from attending to my business has cut off my resources and caused my property to be sacrificed. Under these circumstances it seems to me not just that I should have to pay my own expenses.

I am truly anxious to have my trial and if the delay is owing to any objection to have it take place in Baltimore I am perfectly willing to have it take place in New York or any other State if the Government will sanction it. If this can’t be done I am willing to enter into any amount of bail for my appearance at court within a reasonable period so that lean have permission to visit New York or its vicinity to make some arrangement in regard to my private affairs.

In this event I am willing to give my parole of honor to report to the commanding officer here or wherever required and to hold no forbidden intercourse. If as I was informed by General Banks and other officers {p.657} in Baltimore my detention is simply a matter of precaution the object of the Government will have been as well attained as by my confinement which is destroying my health. I am now under treatment of the garrison surgeon for an affection of the heart which I attribute to the nature of my confinement at Lafayette.

I am, respectfully, sir, your obedient servant,

GEORGE P. KANE.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 29, 1861.

Lieut. Col. MARTIN BURKE, Fort Hamilton, N. Y.

COLONEL: Although no objection was made to the sending by the marshal of New York to the Baltimore commissioners at Fort Lafayette of a subpoena to appear as witnesses in a case to be tried in Baltimore it was not contemplated to allow the commissioners to be released for that purpose.

I am your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., November 1, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the-receipt of your letter of the 29th ultimo* inclosing one from George P. Kane which is herewith returned. If Mr. Kane is permitted to visit the city of New York for the purpose of attending to his private business on his parole of honor to surrender himself at a given time and place or whenever and wherever required and in the meantime to have no correspondence and hold no communication with others on political subjects I have no doubt that his engagement will be faithfully kept and that the indulgence may be safely extended to him.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

* See p. 656.

–––

BOSTON, November 16, 1861.

SETH C. HAWLEY.

MY DEAR SIR: I shall feel obliged if you will read the inclosed copies of letters in regard to Mayor Brown’s conduct on 19th April. Many more could be added and the petitions of the best and most loyal men in Massachusetts can be obtained in favor of Mr. Brown. I cannot but think it for the public welfare that every leniency should be shown him that is compatible with the safety of Baltimore. I can add my testimony to the inclosed that in private communications with Mr. Brown I was entirely satisfied of his good faith in regard to the President’s expected passage through Baltimore; that he was at that time utterly opposed to the doctrine of secession and that his opinions regarding {p.658} slavery were more liberal than that of any other prominent citizen of Baltimore of my acquaintance. I have the best authority for saying that on the 19th and 20th of April he said to the mob almost at the risk of his life that he was opposed to secession.

I believe he is one of the men who ought to be on our side and if so would be of great value to us when the time comes for conciliation in Maryland. The circumstances of his arrest and first days of imprisonment were unfortunately very harsh and I cannot but think that it would be well for the Government to offer him a month’s parole within the State of Massachusetts to attend to his private affairs, he first promising to have no communication of any sort verbal or written regarding Maryland politics. Such a course without committing the Government beyond thirty days would be entirely safe and would have a good effect in removing the remembrance of his too harsh treatment by subordinates at first.

Your obedient servant,

I. M. FORBES.

N. B.-I make these suggestions without any conference with Mr. Brown’s relatives here since I saw him and quite as much in the interest of the Government as from my regard for him.

I. M. FORBES.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

PEPPERVILLE October 17, 1861.

Dr. GEORGE C. SHATTUCK.

MY DEAR SIR: Since the arrest of Mayor Brown, of Baltimore, I have on several occasions fallen in with individuals who being personal acquaintances or knowing his public acts have manifested a deep interest in his present situation. To the officers and soldiers of the Sixth Massachusetts Regiment he is an object of especial interest. His manly and heroic conduct on the eventful 19th of April secured to him the esteem and praise of every one of us. I can testify to the admiration that every one in camp manifested in speaking of the events of that day. Those who were eye-witnesses of what he did were eloquent in their praises.

I was at Camp Chase, Lowell, last Tuesday and took the liberty to introduce the subject to the field officers of the Twenty-sixth (formerly the Sixth) and I found that the same lively sense of indebtedness to Mayor Brown remained fresh as ever. I proposed that we should unite in an effort to procure some mitigation of the trouble under which he is laboring in the way of signing a petition for his relief. To this no objection was offered but this that it seemed a measure of questionable propriety for gentlemen holding military offices under the United States Government to interfere officially in any proceedings of the State authorities. Still it was the wish of all that their high esteem for Mayor Brown should be expressed in any proper way.

At a dinner of the class of 1828 at the Parker House, Boston, yesterday I was glad when the situation of Mayor Brown became (being suggested by me) the topic of conversation. Hilliard (George S.), Tappan, Loring, Bowditch, Rand and others, all of Boston, were warm in their expressions of esteem and sympathy. I was glad when Hilliard remarked that a petition for Mr. Brown’s release on parole was about to be drawn up and signed by gentlemen of Boston. I hope it will be a successful effort. I should esteem it aim honor if I could be permitted to affix my name with the rest.

{p.659}

I have often listened to the story as our men in camp related the doings of Mayor Brown as they fought their way through Baltimore. I have my doubts whether we should have gotten through at all without his aid; and if we had not God alone knows what would have been the present posture of our national affairs. My prayers and efforts shall never be wanting in behalf of a man who could do so bravely what he did on that memorable occasion.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

CHARLES BABBIDGE, Chaplain of the Sixth Massachusetts Rest., Mass. Vol. Militia.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

LOWELL, October 22, 1861.

This may certify that at the passage of the Sixth Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Militia through Baltimore, April 19, I led the rear companies. In the midst of the attack by the populace Mayor Brown was at my side and signified a willingness to take-any position or to render any service in his power. I can bear witness to his patriotic and heroic conduct on that occasion.

A. S. FOLLANSBEE, Captain Company C, Sixth Regiment-Massachusetts Vol. Militia.

[Inclosure No. 3.]

146 BROADWAY, NEW YORK, October 24, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

DEAR SIR: The Hon. George William Brown, now a State prisoner at Fort Lafayette, is an old friend and college-mate of mine and I regret very much to find him in the position he now occupies. I know not of course whatever evidence there may be now to justify his imprisonment but presume it is undoubtedly sufficient. But I inclose herewith a letter he wrote me in 1855 showing what his sentiments were at that time and I trust they are not different now. At all events I should be gratified with a permit to go and see him as a friend and hope you will send me one. Be kind enough to send me back the inclosed letter.

Very truly, &c.,

JNO. S. PATTERSON.

[Sub-inclosure.]

BALTIMORE, October 1, 1855.

JOHN S. PATTERSON, Esq., 293 Broadway, New York.

MY DEAR PATTERSON: Yours of the 29th instant received this morning and your approbation of my address and concurrence in the views it contained give me sincere pleasure. I am a very ardent Republican and yet cannot fail to see that there are evils and shortcomings in this great country, and that now especially it is in a situation of great peril but I have not time at present to go into this matter.

...

Respectfully,

GEO. WM. BROWN.

{p.660}

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, November 18, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: The inclosed preamble and resolutions signed by all the members of the first branch of the city council of Baltimore and the accompanying letter* of the provost-marshal express the general feeling of the Union men of the city in regard to the liberation of certain State prisoners. They are respectfully forwarded for the information of the Government.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

* Not found.

[Inclosure.]

At a meeting of the members of the first branch of the city council of Baltimore held the 15th November, 1861, the following preamble and resolution were unanimously adopted:

Whereas, we have been informed that application has been made to Government for the release of the political prisoners arrested in this city and detained in the national fortresses; and

Whereas, we are confident that the liberation of said prisoners and their return to our midst at this time would be fraught with immense danger to the loyal cause: Be it

Resolved, That we respectfully urge Maj. Gen. John A. Dix to remonstrate with the Government upon this subject and oppose the contemplated action.

S. F. Streeter, chairman, pro tem.; James Young, secretary; Philip Kirkwood, John Lee Chapman, John Dukehart, Samuel Duer, Edwd. S. Lamden, C. Sidney Norris, John Barron, Thos. W. Cromer, D. H. Hoopes, Thos. H. Mules, J. M. Kimberly, Win. Sullivan, A. Schwartze, Win. S. Crowley, John Evans, Peter G. Sauerwein, Win. T. Williams, Andrew J. Burke.

–––

BALTIMORE, November 27, 1861.

General JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore.

DEAR SIR: We desire to enlist your sympathy and favor in a matter of humanity. Mr. Griffith, the father-in-law of Mr. George P. Kane, is at a point of death; he may not live twenty-four hours. He is very desirous to see Kane before his death. Kane’s wife and a maiden sister compose the family. They are in great distress. Some of the signers having known the family for thirty years feel great interest for them. We think the Government could not suffer injury by permitting Kane to come on for a short time to see or attend the funeral of the old gentleman. We are all uncompromising Union men. Hoping you will get speedy permission for his visit to Baltimore, we are yours,

Very truly,

JAMES HOOPER, SR. C. A. GAMBRILL. JOHN CLARK.

[Indorsement.]

Respectfully referred to the Secretary of State with the recommendation that Mr. Kane may be allowed to come to Baltimore on his parole for the purpose mentioned.

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

{p.661}

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, November 27, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore.

GENERAL: I have the honor to inclose herewith some statements together with a report from Seth C. Hawley, esq., in reference to George William Brown, of Baltimore, Md. Will you have the goodness to return them to me after examination with such suggestions as you may have to make in the case?

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

413 BROOME STREET, NEW YORK, November 26, 1861.

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary of State, United States.

DEAR SIR: At the earnest request of several prominent citizens of Boston of unquestioned loyalty I make this communication in relation to George W. Brown, late mayor of Baltimore. His case is perfectly known to your Department and requires no comment by me.

The specialty in his case consists in this: On the fatal day in April when men of Massachusetts were massacred in the streets of Baltimore Mayor Brown marched with the troops at the peril of his life and heroically did all in his power to give them safe conduct. It was by his order that they fired upon the assailing mob. On that occasion at the peril of his life he said in public that secession was a heresy that he would not tolerate. Hundreds of Massachusetts men witnessed his attitude. It was a time of trial and danger. They feel gratitude and sympathy for and with him such as common danger is sure to produce. From these causes there is a general desire in Massachusetts that this rigor of imprisonment may be mitigated as far as public safety will allow.

Mr. Brown told me that in regard to his business it would be a great favor to be allowed to live in Boston on parole so that he could call his family to him and conduct his business by correspondence. I am of opinion that such a course with him would be safe. I inclose an application on his behalf by Mr. George C. Shattuck, a respectable and loyal man, and other papers illustrating the present state of public feeling in relation to Mr. Brown.

I am, very respectfully, yours,

S. C. HAWLEY.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

BOSTON, November 20, 1861.

SETH C. HAWLEY, Esq.

MY DEAR SIR: Referring to my letter of the 16th I now beg leave to inclose an application from Doctor Shattuck to Mr. Seward in behalf of Mayor Brown and to beg you to forward it with such indorsements as you can consistently give. I can only say that I think the public interest would be promoted by such an act of leniency and to add my own request to Doctor Shattuck’s.

I am, yours, truly,

I. M. FORBES.

{p.662}

[sub-inclosure.]

BOSTON, November 20, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, &c.

SIR: I respectfully ask that my brother-in-law, George William Brown, mayor of Baltimore, be released from custody at Fort Warren for the period of thirty days from an early day next month on his parole that he will not leave the New England States and will not meddle with the public affairs of the State of Maryland or the city of Baltimore but will comport himself as a true and loyal citizen. The object of this release is to allow him to attend to his private affairs and especially to those of his family in relation to the unsettled estate of my father-in-law, the late Frederick William Brown, of Baltimore, the interests of several persons of undoubted loyalty requiring his advice and co-operation. He was taken very suddenly and has not been able to make such arrangements as the interests of those connected with him require.

With respect, your obedient servant,

GEO. C. SHATTUCK.

SIR: I beg leave to add to the above the expression of my earnest conviction that a compliance with Doctor Shattuck’s request will be for the public interest and will personally oblige many loyal citizens including

Your obedient servant,

I. M. FORBES.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, November 28, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I am decidedly of the opinion that it would be well for public reasons to allow Mr. Brown, mayor of this city, to be released on parole for thirty days on condition that he shall not, leave the New England States. The provost-marshal whom I usually consult in matters of this kind fully concurs. I have the honor to return the papers inclosed to me.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

[Indorsement.]

NOVEMBER 28, 1861.

I am unable to see any possible objection to granting the petition. Mr. Brown is a gentleman and will not violate his parole and I think the public service will not suffer by this act of clemency.

GEO. R. DODGE, Provost-Marshal.

–––

BALTIMORE, November 28, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD:

Colonel Kane’s father-in-law died this morning. His family are very anxious that the colonel should be here at the funeral and attend to some {p.663} matters of interest. They suggest that if you grant the permission that a telegraph dispatch to Boston would enable him to reach here in time. They also solicit your answer to me.

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, November 28, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Fort McHenry, Baltimore:

Your telegram received. George P. Kane has been released for three weeks on parole.

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, November 28, 1861.

Col. JUSTIN DIMICK, Fort Warren, Boston.

COLONEL: George P. Kane may be allowed to visit Baltimore to attend the funeral of his father-in-law and be absent three weeks on giving his parole that he will return at the end of that time and will do no hostile act to the United States.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, November 29, 1861.

JOHN S. KEYES, Esq., U. S. Marshal, Boston.

SIR: It has been represented to me that Mr. George W. Brown, mayor of Baltimore, wishes to be released from custody for a period of time upon the following conditions, viz: That he will give his parole of honor that he will not leave the State of Massachusetts and that he will neither hold any correspondence himself nor be engaged with any persons residing in the insurrectionary States during the present hostilities without permission from the Secretary of State, and that he will not do any act hostile or injurious to the Government of the United States and that at the expiration of that period he will voluntarily deliver himself up to you to be recommitted. I will thank you to visit him and if upon inquiry such is the case you may release him for the period of thirty days upon the conditions named and report to me.

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

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

U. S. MARSHAL’S OFFICE, DISTRICT OF MASSACHUSETTS, Boston, December 3, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State of the United States.

SIR: I have the honor to report-that I visited Fort Warren to-day with your instructions for the release of Doctor Lynch and Doctor Macgill on certain conditions and they both declined to comply with the terms proposed, Doctor Lynch declining to take the oath though at the same time expressing his willingness to give his parole of honor to the same {p.664} effect, and Doctor Macgill declining to resign his office as State senator though willing to take the oath. Mayor Brown, of Baltimore, accepted the parole tendered him for thirty days and signed it at once but does not leave the fort till to-morrow when his leave of absence will commence. I have retained his parole not knowing whether the Department would wish it forwarded to Washington or kept here till it expires.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN S. KEYES, U. S. Marshal.

–––

Resolution offered in the House of Representatives December 10, 1861.

Resolved, That the Congress alone has the power under the Constitution of the United States to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus; that the exercise of that power by any other department of the Government is a usurpation and therefore dangerous to the liberties of the people; that it is the duty of the President to deliver Charles Howard, William H. Gatchell and John W. Davis to the custody of the marshal of the proper district if they are charged with any offense against the laws of the United States to the end that they may be indicted and enjoy the right of a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime is alleged to have been committed.*

* Mr. Bingham, of Ohio, chairman, reported back and asked that the Judiciary Committee be discharged from further consideration of the memorial of the Baltimore police board. Mr. Pendleton, of Ohio, moved to recommit the report to the Judiciary Committee with instructions to report the foregoing resolution. On motion of Mr. Bingham the whole subject was laid on the table by the following yea and nay vote:

Yeas-Messrs. Aldrich, Alley, Arnold, Babbitt, Goldsmith F. Bailey, Baker, Baxter, Beaman, Bingham, Francis P. Blair, Jacob B. Blair, Samuel S. Blair, Blake, Buffinton, Burnham, Calvert, Campbell, Chamberlain, Clark, Cobb, Colfax, Frederick A. Conkling, Roscoe Conkling, Cravens, Davis, Dawes, Delano, Diven, Duell, Dunlap, Dunn, Edgerton, Edwards, Eliot, English, Fenton, Fessenden, Franchat, Frank, Goodwin, Granger, Grider, Haight, Hale, Hanchett, Harrison, Holman, Hooper, Horton, Hutchins, Julian, Kelley, Francis W. Kellogg, William Kellogg, Killinger, Lansing, Law, Loomis, Lovejoy, McPherson, Mallory, Maynard, Menzies, Moorhead, Anson P. Morrill, Justin S. Morrill, Nixon, Noell, Olin, Patton, T. G. Phelps, Pike, Pomeroy, Porter, Potter, Alexander H. Rice, Riddle, Edward H. Rollins, Sargent, Sedgwick, Shanks, Sheffield, Shellabarger, Sherman, Sloan, Smith, Stevens, Stratton, Benjamin F. Thomas, Francis Thomas, Train, Trimble, Trowbridge, Upton, Van Horn, Van Wyck, Verree, Wall, Wallace, Charles W. Walton, E. P. Walton, Washburne, Wheeler, Albert S. White, Wilson, Woodruff, Worcester, and Wright-108.

Nays.-Messrs. Allen, Ancona, Joseph Baily, Biddle, George H. Browne, William G. Brown, Cooper, Fouke, Harding, Johnson, Lazear, May, Morris, Noble, Norton, Pendleton, Perry, Robinson, Shiel, John B. Steele, William G. Steele, Vallandigham, Wadsworth, Ward, Chilton A. White, and Wickliffe-26. (See proceedings of the House of Representatives for December 10, 1861, in Congressional Globe.)

–––

U. S. MARSHAL’S OFFICE, DISTRICT OF MASSACHUSETTS, Boston, January 4, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State of the United States.

SIR: I have the honor to report that George William Brown, of Baltimore, has this day surrendered himself to me pursuant to the terms {p.665} of his parole. Not having any directions from the State Department in regard to his recommitment and this gale of wind making it very difficult if not impracticable to land at Fort Warren I have taken the liberty to retain him in custody and ask for instructions in the premises. He expresses no desire to have his parole extended but an earnest wish to be allowed to return to Baltimore and resume the performance of his official and private duties.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN S. KEYES, U. S. Marshal.

–––

U. S. MARSHAL’S OFFICE, DISTRICT OF MASSACHUSETTS, Boston, January 14, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State of the United States.

SIR: I have the honor to report that on the receipt of your letter of the 6th instant* I communicated its contents to George William Brown, esq., and he desired a day or two to see his friends and make his arrangements to return to the fort as he declined to accept the parole extension. This I granted him and on Saturday last I recommitted him to the fort pursuant to your order. As I did not return him there in season to make a report that night I deferred doing it on Monday as yours of the 11th instant* extending his parole ninety days came to hand and I waited till to-day for his reply thereto. He respectfully declines this also on the ground substantially that it would be consenting to his banishment from his home and duties to accept it. I regret very much that he should be so punctilious as from considerable intercourse with him I am fully satisfied of his loyalty at heart and think he might safely be at large here certainly if not in Baltimore. Mrs. Brown, his wife, and her brother, Dr. George C. Shattuck, of this city, one of our oldest and most respected physicians, desire to obtain permission to visit him on Monday next, the day before Mrs. Brown leaves here to return to Baltimore, to consult with him in relation to family matters and I am confident will not abuse the privilege if it can be accorded to them.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN S. KEYES, U. S. Marshal.

* Not found.

–––

STONEHAM, MASS., March 17, 1862.

Hon. EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War, Washington, D. C.

DEAR SIR: On the 19th of April, 1861, while marching through Baltimore at the head of my company I was shot down in the streets by the cowardly mob who attacked us of the Sixth Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteer Militia. I was cared for by kind-hearted men of the city immediately and received every care and attention I could have received among friends, and as soon as his honor Mayor Brown, of Baltimore, learned of my whereabouts he was much interested in my {p.666} case and visited me doing all in his power in my behalf and of other wounded soldiers of the same regiment. Mayor Brown is now confined at Fort Warren, Boston Harbor, as a prisoner. For his many kindnesses to myself and comrades I would like permission to visit Fort Warren to see him if it would not be incompatible with the public interests. I feel it my duty to repay him for his many kindnesses to us unfortunate wounded of the Massachusetts Sixth Regiment so far as may be done with honor and consistent with my duty to the National Government. I was on the 19th day of April last captain and commanding Company L, Sixth Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Militia, and am now receiving a pension of the General Government. With the prayer that I may be granted permission to visit Fort Warren,

I remain, &c., your humble servant,

JOHN H. DIKE.

[Indorsement.]

The statement of Captain Dike is true and he is one of our most loyal and brave citizens. He is yet a cripple from the wound he received on the 19th of April. He is now a member of the Massachusetts house of representatives.

[WM. SCHOULER,] Adjutant-General of Massachusetts.

–––

[BALTIMORE, November 29, (7) 1862.]

To THE EDITORS REPUBLICAN:

The accompanying brief address was designed to appear in the morning papers and with that view was sent to the only two reputed independent morning journals which as I am informed have circulation among Marylanders-the Sun and Gazette. The publication was, however, declined by these journals, not as they informed me because of their dissent from the truth of what I say but because such truths are not allowed to be published in Baltimore by the despotic censorship to which they are compelled to submit.

GEO. P. KANE.

[Inclosure.]

BALTIMORE, November 29, 1862.

To MY FELLOW-CITIZENS OF THE STATE OF MARYLAND:

After an incarceration of seventeen months* in four of the forts of the United States now converted by the Government into prisons which have no similitude but in the Bastile of France I avail myself of the first moment of my return to my native State to address a brief word to you.

In this imprisonment I am understood to have been the special victim of Mr. Secretary Seward, who in concert with his hired minions has omitted no occasion to heap upon me accusations which he knew to be false and therefore dared not bring to the ordeal of a public trial.

To these charges the despotic censorship of the prisons in which I have been kept allowed me no reply; and I can only now promise that in due time and upon a proper occasion Mr. Seward shall hear from me in a way which will procure for him if he has not already acquired it the contempt of every honest man and woman in the land.

{p.667}

Without having been held upon any specific charge I am turned out of prison without any reason being assigned for it; and thus in my arbitrary arrest and release I illustrate the most flagrant violation of constitutional liberty.

It would be unbecoming the dignity of the subject to cast abusive epithets upon the author of this gross outrage; but when allowed the opportunity I pledge myself under pain of the forfeiture of the good opinion you have always honored me with to show that all that is bad in a man, unpatriotic in a citizen and corrupt in an officer finds itself concentrated in this individual.

GEO. P. KANE.

* See p. 745 for Secretary Stanton’s telegraphic order of November 26, 1862, releasing Kane, Brown, Howard, and Gatchell unconditionally.

–––

ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S OFFICE, January 6, 1863.

WILLIAM PRICE, Esq., U. S. District Attorney, Baltimore.

SIR: I am not prepared for an exact answer to your letter of the 5th about the case of George P. Kane. Serious doubts are entertained here whether you could at this time safely go to trial in any treason case in Baltimore by reason of the supposed popular feeling and judicial bias. Of course you are far better informed than I can be in that matter, and I would be very glad to have your views upon it. I have written to General Schenck a private note upon the subject and told him that if he wished information for consultation he might safely apply to you. As to the steps to be taken after indictment but preliminary to trial I should very reluctantly charge myself with the ordinary forms and the minute particulars of prosecution for the district attorneys on the spot are far better judges of those matters than I can be at a distance. Besides if I assume it as my duty I fear I shall be overwhelmed with the multitude and variety of the work. Of one thing, however, be assured that as far as I can I will shield you against all unjust assaults on account of the discharge of your official duties.

Most respectfully, sir, your obedient servant,

EDWARD BATES.

–––

Arrest and Detention of Certain Members of the Maryland Legislature.

Memoranda concerning the arrested members of the Maryland Legislature.-From Record Book, State Department, “Arrests for Disloyalty.”

E. G. Kilbourn, speaker of the Maryland House of Delegates, was arrested by Major-General Dix in Baltimore September 20, 1861, and conveyed to Fort Lafayette and subsequently transferred to Fort Warren, Kilbourn was as stated by General Dix a “dangerous secessionist.” Provost-Marshal Dodge, of Baltimore, reports of him as follows, viz:

E. G. Kilbourn was speaker of the house of delegates and exercised much influence; was very violent; a Northern man by birth; we think him a dangerous man and that he should he retained.

The said B. G. Kilbourn remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862.

{p.668}

Doctor Lynch, a member of the State Senate of Maryland, was arrested September 26, 1861, by the military authorities of the United States and committed to Fort Lafayette from whence he was afterward transferred to Fort Warren. This arrest was made as a measure of military precaution to guard against the treasonable purposes of the conspirators who sought to overthrow the power of the National Government in Maryland and to plunge that State into civil war. Application having been made for the release of Doctor Lynch an order was issued from the Department of State January 20, 1862, directing Colonel Dimick, commanding at Fort Warren, to discharge him on his taking the oath of allegiance and stipulating that he will not enter the insurrectionary States nor hold correspondence with residents thereof nor do any act hostile to the United States. He was accordingly released January 24, 1862.

...

Dr. Charles Macgill of Hagerstown, Md., a member of the senate of that State, was arrested on or about the 30th day of September, 1861, by Major-General Banks by direction of the Secretary of State and taken to Fort McHenry from whence he was afterward transferred to Fort Lafayette and still later to Fort Warren. Macgill was charged on oath with disloyal sentiments and purposes and with having declared his intention to give aid to the rebel cause to the extent of contributing every dollar he could spare to the support of the war and that he was going to see if he could not make arrangements in Virginia to fill Pennsylvania with troops. On the 9th of October, 1861, Doctor Macgill was offered his release on condition of taking the oath of allegiance with proper stipulations of security which he refused to do. The said Macgill remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

William E. Salmon was arrested by order of the military authorities at Frederick, Md., September 17, 1861, and committed to Fort Lafayette and from thence transferred to Fort Warren by order of the Secretary of State. He was charged with being a disloyal member of the Maryland Legislature. An order was issued from the Department of State dated December 23, 1861, directing Colonel Dimick, commanding at Fort Warren, to release Salmon on his taking the oath of allegiance stipulating that he will do no act hostile to the Government of the United States during the present insurrection, &c. He was accordingly released December 27, 1861.

...

Clarke J. Durant, of Saint Mary’s County, Md., a member of the Legislature from that county, was arrested at Frederick on the 17th of September, 1861, by Major-General Banks acting under the order of the War Department. He was taken to Annapolis and thence by sea to Fort Lafayette and subsequently transferred to Fort Warren. Durant was one of the band of disloyal members of the Legislature of Maryland who were known to be conspiring to pass an act of secession. His arrest was a measure of military precaution for the preservation of the public peace and to prevent the consummation of that treasonable design. On the 16th of December, 1861, an order was issued to release Durant from confinement on his taking the oath of allegiance which {p.669} he refused to do. The said Durant remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when he was transferred to the charge of the War Department.

...

George W. Landing, of Worcester County, Md., a member of the Legislature, was one of the faction conspiring to pass an act of secession in that body and was therefore arrested by military authority as a measure of precaution to prevent the consummation of that design and to preserve the public peace. The Department of State has no information of the time of his arrest. He was transferred from Fort Lafayette to Fort Warren on the 1st of November, 1861. On the 26th day of November, 1861, Landing was released from confinement on taking the oath of allegiance with stipulations against future misconduct.

...

Bernard Mills, of Carroll County, Md., member of the Legislature from that county, was arrested at Frederick on the 17th of September, 1861, by Major-General Banks by order of the War Department. He was taken to Annapolis and thence to Fort Lafayette and subsequently transferred to Fort Warren. Mills was one of the band of disloyal members of the Legislature of Maryland who was known to be conspiring to pass an act of secession. His arrest was a measure of military precaution for the preservation of the public peace and to prevent the consummation of that treasonable design. The said Bernard Mills remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

Josiah H. Gordon was a member of the Legislature of Maryland from the county of Allegany and was one of the party of conspirators known to be plotting to pass an act of secession. He was arrested on the 17th day of September, 1861, at Frederick by Major-General Banks under orders of the War Department and taken to Annapolis whence he was sent by sea to Fort Lafayette and afterwards transferred to Fort Warren. Gordon stated on his arrest that he had always sympathized with the secessionists and was connected and interested with them. This arrest was made as a measure of military precaution to guard against the treasonable purposes of the conspirators in the Legislature. The said Gordon remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

L. G. Quinlan was arrested by order of General Dix September 13, 1861, and committed to Fort McHenry and from thence transferred successively to Fort Lafayette and Fort Warren. He was charged with being a disloyal member of the Maryland Legislature. An order was issued from the Department of State dated November 23, 1861, directing Colonel Dimick, commanding at Fort Warren, to release Quinlan on his taking the oath of allegiance stipulating that he will neither enter nor correspond with the States in insurrection against the authority of the Government of the United States nor do any act hostile to the United States during the present insurrection. He was accordingly released November 26, 1861.

{p.670}

William R. Miller was arrested by order of General Dix September 18, 1861, and committed to Fort McHenry and from thence transferred successively to Fort Lafayette and Fort Warren. He was charged with being a disloyal member of the Maryland Legislature. An order was issued from the Department of State dated January 31, 1862, directing Colonel Dimick, commanding at Fort Warren, to release Miller on his engaging upon honor that at the expiration of thirty days from his release he will voluntarily surrender himself to General Dix at Baltimore to be by him returned to the fort unless he shall otherwise direct and that meantime he will neither enter nor correspond with the States in insurrection against the authority of the United States Government nor do any act hostile or injurious to the United States during the present insurrection. He was accordingly released and remained on his parole February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

Lawrence Sangston was one of the notoriously disloyal members of the Maryland Legislature who were conspiring to pass an act of secession during the summer of 1861. He represented the county of Baltimore in the House of Delegates. He was arrested at Baltimore by order of Major-General Dix and placed in custody at Fort McHenry on the 13th day of September, 1861. He was transferred to Fort Monroe, Fort Lafayette and lastly to Fort Warren. This arrest was made as a measure of military precaution on account of the known sympathy of Sangston with the rebels and to prevent the accomplishment of the treasonable purposes which a party of conspirators in the Legislature with whom he was associated were contemplating and to guard against any insurrection or disturbance growing out of their machinations. On the 26th of December, 1861, Sangston was ordered to be released for thirty days on his parole to return to Fort Warren at the end of that time and to do no act hostile to the United States. On the 29th of January, 1862, Major-General Dix was authorized to extend the parole of Sangston with such conditions or limitations as he might deem proper.

...

William G. Harrison, of Baltimore, was a member of the Legislature of Maryland known to be one of the party of conspirators who were plotting to pass an act of secession. He was therefore arrested as an act of military precaution by order of Major-General Dix on or about the 12th of September, 1861, and taken to Fort McHenry and was afterward transferred successively to Fort Monroe, Fort Lafayette and Fort Warren. On the 26th of November, 1861, Harrison was offered his liberty on condition of taking the oath of allegiance which he refused to do. The said Harrison remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862.

...

Henry M. Warfield, of Baltimore, was a member of the Legislature of Maryland known as one of the band of conspirators who were plotting to pass an act of secession through that body. He was arrested by order of the War Department on or about the 12th day of September, 1861, and confined successively in Forts McHenry, Monroe, Lafayette and Warren. This arrest was made as a precautionary measure to prevent the consummation of the treason contemplated by the conspirators in the Legislature and to preserve the public peace. The said {p.671} Warfield remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

Ross Winans* was arrested by order of the military authorities at Baltimore September 11, 1861, and committed to Fort McHenry. He was charged with being one of the disloyal members of the Maryland Legislature. An order was issued from the Department of State directing General Dix to release Mr. Winans on his renewing his parole given on his release from a former arrest by the military authorities. He was accordingly released September 23, 1861.

...

Dr. J. Hanson Thomas, of Baltimore, was a member of the Legislature of Maryland and one of the party of conspirators to pass an act of secession in that body. He was therefore arrested by order of Major-General Dix on or about the 12th day of September, 1861, as a precautionary measure to prevent the consummation of that treasonable design and to preserve the peace of the State. Among papers discovered in possession of F. Key Howard who was arrested at nearly the same time are declarations signed by Thomas and others: “That they are in favor of the immediate recognition by the United States of the independence of the Confederate States,” and “if the State of Virginia determines to secede from the United States they are in favor of direct co-operation with that State in such secession.”

...

On the 3d day of January, 1862, an order was made to release Thomas for thirty days on his parole which he refused to give. The said Thomas was confined successively at Forts McHenry, Monroe, Lafayette and Warren, at which last place he remained in custody February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

Dr. Richard C. McCubbin was arrested by Major-General Banks at Frederick, Md., September 17, 1861. He was represented to have been one of the disloyal members of the Maryland Legislature. General Banks states in regard to McCubbin in his report to the military authorities of the arrests made by him at Frederick that on the urgent solicitation of Union members he released some of the subordinate officers of the Legislature on their taking the oath of allegiance; that the same parties desired the release of McCubbin on the same conditions and that he had directed “that he might be left at Annapolis under sufficient guard until the orders of the Government could be ascertained.” No information has been received at the Department of State relative to the further action taken by the War Department in the case of McCubbin.

...

James U. Dennis was arrested by the military authorities of Baltimore about the 20th of September, 1861, and conveyed to Fort McHenry. Dennis was a member of the House of Delegates of Maryland, representing the Somerset district, and was suspected of being one of the band of conspirators who were endeavoring to force the ordinance of secession through the Legislature of that State. While entertaining {p.672} strong sympathy for the rebel cause he was not a violent secessionist. Having offered to take the oath of allegiance he was upon the recommendation of Major-General Dix discharged from custody by order of the Secretary of State dated September 21, 1861.

...

Charles H. Pitts, of Baltimore, a member of the Legislature of Mary land and one of the disloyal band who were known to be conspiring to pass an act of secession in that body, was arrested on or about the 13th day of September, 1861, by order of Major-General Dix and taken to Fort McHenry from which place he was transferred to Fort Monroe and afterward to Forts Lafayette and Warren. The arrest of Pitts was a measure of military precaution for the preservation of the public peace and the prevention of the treasonable designs of the disloyal conspirators in the Legislature. On the 13th day of December, 1861, an order was sent to Colonel Dimick to release Pitts for thirty days on his parole with the usual stipulations for good behavior. On the 9th day of January, 1862, Major-General Dix was authorized to exercise his discretion in regard to extending the parole of Pitts and it is understood that he remained at large under such stipulations as were satisfactory to General Dix till February 15, 1862, when he was passed over to the charge of the War Department.

...

S. Teackle Wallis, of Baltimore, was a member of the Maryland Legislature and was publicly esteemed as the leader of the band of conspirators who were known to be plotting to pass an act of secession. He was arrested by order of the War Department on or about the 12th day of September, 1861, and confined successively in Forts McHenry, Monroe, Lafayette and Warren. Wallis openly advocated the recognition of the rebel Government and his correspondence and manuscripts were full of arguments in their justification. His arrest was a measure of precaution to preserve the public peace and to prevent the consummation of the treasonable purposes entertained by the conspirators in the Legislature. The said Wallis remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.**

...

Thomas J. Claggett was a member of the Legislature of Maryland from the county of Frederick in the year 1861. Known to be one of the faction of that body which was engaged in plots to pass an act of secession in that State he was arrested by order of Major-General Banks as a measure of precaution on the 17th day of September, 1861, and sent to Fort Lafayette and from there afterward transferred to Fort Warren. Early in January and again in February, 1862, Claggett was offered his discharge from confinement on condition of his taking {p.673} the oath of allegiance but he refused to accept his liberty on such terms. The said Claggett remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

Robert M. Denison, of Baltimore County, Md., was a member of the Legislature of that State and one of the well-known band of conspirators in that body who were busy plotting to pass an act of secession. He was therefore arrested as a measure of military precaution by order of Major-General Dix on or about the 12th day of September, 1861, and confined successively in Forts McHenry, Monroe, Lafayette and Warren. On the 21st of January, 1862, Denison was offered his liberty for thirty days on condition of giving his parole which he refused to do. The said Denison remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when he was transferred to the charge of the War Department.

...

This man [John J. Heckart] was arrested by General Dix and committed to Fort Lafayette September 24, 1861; afterward transferred to Fort Warren. He was charged with being a disloyal member of the Maryland Legislature. An order was issued from the Department of State November 23, 1861, directing Colonel Dimick to release Heckart on his taking the oath of allegiance stipulating that he will do no act hostile to the United States during the present insurrection. He was accordingly released November 26, 1861.

...

Andrew Kessler was a member of the Maryland Legislature arrested by Major-General Banks by order of the Secretary of War September 17, 1861, and sent to Fort Lafayette and from thence transferred to Fort Warren. He was charged with being one of the members of the Legislature of Maryland who was conspiring to pass an ordinance of secession to take that State out of the Union in violation of the Constitution and against the wishes and sentiment of the people of Maryland. An order was issued from the Department of State directing Colonel Dimick, commanding at Fort Warren, to release Kessler on his taking the oath of allegiance to the Government of the United States. He was accordingly released December 20, 1861.

...

John M. Brewer was arrested in Frederick, Md., September 17, 1861, by order of Major-General Banks and committed to Fort Lafayette and from thence transferred to Fort Warren. He was the chief clerk of the Maryland Senate and regarded as one of the conspirators who were engaged in the effort to pass an ordinance of secession through the Legislature of that State. December 17, 1861, an order was issued from the Department of State directing Colonel Dimick, commanding at Fort Warren, to release Brewer on his engaging on oath not to visit or correspond with States in insurrection and to do no hostile act against the United States Government and that he would return to Fort Warren at the expiration of thirty days and surrender himself into the custody of Colonel Dimick. Having given the required parole he was released December 22, 1861. Major-General Dix having recommended the extension of Mr. Brewer’s parole for sixty days an order was issued from the Department of State January 15, 1862, authorizing General {p.674} Dix to renew the parole for the further time requested. The said John M. Brewer remained on parole February 15, 1862, when in conformity with an order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department

...

Thomas J. McKaig, a member of the Maryland Senate suspected of disloyalty, was arrested the latter part of August, 1861, in Cumberland, Md., by the military authorities and taken to the headquarters of General B. F. Kelley. He was released from confinement September 3, 1861, on his parole of honor for the purpose of visiting Ohio and Pennsylvania but on condition that he would visit no place in Maryland except Baltimore, where he was to remain only long enough to get some money wherewith to pay his expenses. McKaig was rearrested by order of the Secretary of State October 17, 1861, but on being convinced that McKaig had not violated his parole the Secretary ordered him released October 19, 1861.

...

Philip F. Rasin was arrested by order of Major-General Dix and conveyed to Fort Lafayette September 24, 1861, and subsequently transferred to Fort Warren. He was a member of the Maryland House of Delegates from Kent County and charged with disloyalty to the United States Government Major-General Dix in a letter to the Secretary of State dated January 24, 1862, states that Rasin was offered a release on condition of taking the oath of allegiance before he was sent to Fort Lafayette but declined. The said P. F. Rasin remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

J. W. Maxwell, of Elkton, Md., was arrested by order of General Dix September 10, 1861, and committed to Fort McHenry and from thence transferred successively to Fort Lafayette and Fort Warren. He was charged with being a disloyal member of the Maryland Legislature, voting treasonably in said Legislature and speaking inimically to the Government. An order was issued from the Department of State dated January 31, 1862, directing Colonel Dimick, commanding at Fort Warren, to release said Maxwell upon his engaging upon honor that at the expiration of thirty days from the date of his release he will voluntarily surrender himself to General Dix at Baltimore to be by him returned-to the fort unless he shall otherwise direct and that meantime he will neither enter nor correspond with any of the States in insurrection against the authority of the Government of the United States without permission of the Secretary of State nor to engage in any treasonable correspondence with anybody nor do any act hostile or injurious to the United States during the present insurrection. He was accordingly released and remained upon his parole February 15, 1862.

...

Robert W. Rasin, of Maryland, was arrested on the 26th of October, 1861, and committed to Fort McHenry by order of Maj. Gen. John A. Dix, and December 2, 1861, was transferred to Fort Lafayette. Rasin was charged with having recruited men for the rebel army. January 24, 1862, in a letter to the Secretary of State General Dix says of Rasin: {p.675} “He is a bad subject, and it is feared that he would not respect the oath of allegiance if he were to take it. I cannot advise his release at present.” The said Robert W. Rasin remained in custody in Fort Lafayette February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

...

T. Parkin Scott, of Baltimore, was arrested by order of the War Department on the 13th day of September, 1861, and placed in confinement at Fort McHenry. He was afterward successively transferred to Fort Monroe, Fort Lafayette and Fort Warren. The criminal complicity of Scott with the rebellion was well known and his arrest was a measure of military precaution to prevent the probable occurrence of disturbances through his efforts and influence. Among the papers communicated to the Department of State in this case is a letter of which the following is a copy:

BALTIMORE, May 1, 1861.

To THE BOARD OF POLICE OF THE CITY OF BALTIMORE:

On the 22d of April, 1861, I obtained through Governor Letcher an order from the adjutant-general of Virginia on the ordnance officer at Staunton for 5,000 flint-lock muskets as a loan for the use of the Maryland troops, and with said order I proceeded to Staunton and there obtained 2,000 stand* in part of said order and employed G. R. Mason to carry them in wagons to Winchester, and on the 26th of April I had them forwarded thence to Baltimore consigned to William T. Walters and they were here delivered to your board. The freight and charges upon these arms from Lexington, Va., through Staunton and Winchester amounted to $563.04 and is unpaid and I am responsible for the amount. Of course under the circumstances I expect your board to pay these charges.

Very respectfully, yours, &c.,

T. PARKIN SCOTT.

* For memorandum of cannon, arms and munitions seized when the Baltimore Police Commissioners were arrested see p. 626. Also see Banks’ address to the people of Baltimore, p. 625.

There are many other letters expressing treasonable sentiments, and addresses written apparently for publication or delivery to public assemblies, and drafts of resolutions apparently designed for the action of public meetings of similar character, and also drafts of acts and proceedings apparently designed for the action of the Legislature of like treasonable tendency. It is not deemed material, however, to give quotations here from any of these papers after setting forth the above letter of May 2. The said T. Parkin Scott remained in custody at Fort Warren February 15, 1862, when in conformity with the order of the War Department of the preceding day he was transferred to the charge of that Department.

–––

WASHINGTON, April 26, 1861.

[Brig. Gen. B. F. BUTLER:]

The undersigned, General-in-Chief of the Army, has received from the President of the United States the following instructions respecting the Legislature of Maryland now about to assemble at Annapolis, viz:

It is left to the commanding general to watch and await their action, which if it shall be to arm their people against the United States he is to adopt the most prompt and efficient means to counteract even if necessary to the bombardment of their cities, and in the extremest necessity suspension of the writ of habeas corpus.

In the absence of the undersigned the foregoing instructions are turned over to Brig. Gen. B. F. Butler, of the Massachusetts Volunteers, {p.676} or other officer commanding at Annapolis, who will carry them out in a right spirit-that is with moderation and firmness. In the case of arrested individuals notorious for their hostility to the United States the prisoners will be safely kept and duly cared for but not surrendered except on the order of the commander aforesaid.

WINFIELD SCOTT.

* Winans had previously been arrested and discharged on parole by General Butler. See pp. 571,572. For resolutions of the Maryland Legislature concerning this first arrest see p. 587.

** See p. 611 for William Schley to Hon. William H. Seward, Secretary of State, November 4, 1861, with its inclosure, embodying the substance of conversations with Wallis concerning the probable action of the Maryland Legislature in relation to secession, in which Wallis is made to disclaim all knowledge of a conspiracy on the part of a coterie of that body supposed to favor legislative action taking the State out of the Union or obstructing the war measures of the General Government. These conversations occurred previous to the arrests.-COMPILER.

–––

Copy of printed declaration with original signatures of citizens of Maryland found among the papers of F. Key Howard* at the time of his arrest.

The undersigned citizens** of Baltimore declare themselves to be in favor of immediate recognition by the United States of the independence of the Confederate States. The undersigned further declare that if the State of Virginia determines to secede from the United States they are in favor of direct co-operation with that State in such secession.

John C. Gittings, John E. Droste, James A. Lockington, Richard Downing, Bernard Mulhare, James E. Tate, J. B. Polk, A. A. Williams, O. S. Thompson, Danl. J. Fallon, William H. Marshall, James Sarsfield Mullen, P. Preston Johnston, John O’Connor, John B. Wilson, Samuel Tate, Herman Toscroft, Napoleon Camper, C. H. T. de Mangan, William Quinn, Richard Gault, George F. Ely, John W. Brown, John B. Dietrich, Philip M. Mason, John N. Coonan, Joseph Oliver Lancaster, M. Philip Carroll, Jas. O’Hara, jr., William Shannon, C. Green, Win. Walker, John Perry, Samuel Escott, Jefferson Miller, Patk. Crane, James O’Loughlin, Thomas Beaty, Michael F. Keane, Francis T. Laron, A. K. Wolf, Fred. McKewan, William H. Rundle, John Toner, Jacob W. Myers, James H. McCormick, William Bowling, George Thompson, Edward Lee, James Belt, Henry Butler, John W. Gray, G. E. Shuger, John Hopkins, William Hopkins, Chas. F. Seebode, Casper Gulwalt, A. McGan, Henry Mallon, Chas. S. Bencke, Chas. G. Polley, Thos. Daily, W. Goodrick, John McBride, Chas. P. Cronan, John Gardner, Thomas E. Kilman, Henry Hoffman, N. Kerdspie, Dennis Murphy, Timothy Hays, Win. E. Rogers, George G. Gibson, M. C., T. M. Tenant, M. C. Winfield S. Anderson, M. C., David A. J. Shade, W. Young, D. C. Woods, Edward Levell, S. R. Williamson, Joseph Barry, Win. J. Murdock, James Parsons, Thos. R. Ridgely, Francis (his x mark) Carbon, Francis McKenna, Henry Shannon, Daniel Whitelock, Raymon Burner, Chas. Nickelson, James E. Stockdale, Joseph Files, Geo. Shaffner, C. B. Briscoe, W. H. Scott, John Driscoll, B. A. Williams, Samuel White, John Roach, Samuel Knight, Win. North, William Levering, Chas. Henderson, Henry Burns, William Conrad, jr., Stephen Leary, Edward Lee, John West, B. W. Walker, S. R. Browning, George Laning, B. W. Hussing, John Falmouth, Geo. Wiley, B. H. Hill, Ambrose Mullen, Henry Scum, Jackson Cobart, jr., George Konig, Chas. M. Jackson, Win. H. Slater, Mason Morfit, Henry M. Morfit, John R. Reece, Patrick Gallagher, James Sapp, {p.677} Thomas Walsh, Loughtis Cusick, San. Kirk, jr., Frederick Hess, James D. Ross, Geo. W. Finch, James H. King, George Stromberger, W. G. Harrison, R. M. McLane, W. H. Norris, Ross Winans, Robert Hough, G. D. Spurner, T. P. Scott, J. Hanson Thomas, B. B. Wilson, Chas. Brown, Geo. Shannon, William H. Warley, Daniel Garland, H. A. Marston, Chas. G. Kerr, George T. Clarke, A. Milburn, Fred. J. Allston, Jos. A. Hammett, Jos. S. Smith or Simon, Haml. Golder, E. G. Guild, M. Crichton, John Lutz, Geo. U. Porter, C. V. Martin, J. G. Harvey, J. C. Nicodemus, S. J. Slater, T. Robert Jenkins, Thos. H. McBride, J. A. Dushane, C. S. Marsh, John Rassle, L. M. Beebe, Capt. Sam. White, G. T. Scott, C. J. M. Gwinn, T. M. Lanahan, Neilson Poe, I. li. Stewart, Win. B. Perine, L. T. Bayne, Joseph Bickerson & Co., James Goudy, D’Arcy Paul, jr., H. W. Jenkins, J. B. Eitrouard, Chas. T. Smith, S. S. Shanley, Geo. T. Smith, A. W. Habersham, late U. S. Navy, Hamilton Easter, R. W. Chase, Theo. E. Clifton, P. Trenaust, L. Parson, S. H. Taggart, Hy. C. Wydham, I. H. Sullivan, S. M. Jackson, John W. Scott, E. T. Stuart, Geo. R. Presstman, Thos. P. Williams, jr., Frank X. Ward, J. H. Browne, Dr. C. E. Nickerson, Win. Parkin Scott, S. G. Israel, R. F. Rupp, F. W. Elder, Geo. W. Webb, John Musson, Joseph L. Amos, Emanuel Lamartin, Alfred Mullen, William Sheehan, Louis W. Klunk, Jesse W. Small Henry Ritchmond, F. T. Kelton, J. H. Magruder, F. A: Martin, Joseph A. Gettian, Lewis S. Webb, M. S. Brown, F. Beekman, Geo. A. Schafer, George Mandler,. Henry Woods, Edward Bowen, George Turck, George Stump, A. Stall, Geo. D. Volkman, W. Woodville, jr., P. L. Elder, John D. Kelly, James Kirk, James McFee, G. Allen, E. Shehan, Thos. Kirkpatrick, Joseph E. Otter, Samuel G. B. Cook, H. W. Price, H. O. Larrabee, C. E. Ellison, Francis A. Fifer, James Towner, Henry Stine, George Hartzell & Bros., August Eisenhardt John Meagher, Win. Palmer, John H. Reed, John Beets; Thomas Griffin, Thomas Ehlen, Edwin Hartzell, Chas. Guard, Jacob Baker, John Gurry, George Weidenberger, Christoph Schult, John P. Towson, Chas. Praith, Frank Unwith, Henry P. Vey, Enos Slack, Jesse A. Tipton, Lenhart Shrer.

NOTE BY THE STATE DEPARTMENT.-It may be remarked on looking over the pages that the same names appear twice over, as though they were submitted by separate agents, and also that many of the names have the appearance of being written by the same hand and others by uneducated persons.

* For case of F. Key Howard, editor of the Baltimore Exchange newspaper, see Vol. II, this series.

** There are twelve slips-each having a printed heading, and probably the signatures were obtained by separate individuals, each presenting a separate slip.

–––

EXECUTIVE MANSION, Washington, July 31, 1861.

The marshals of the United States in the vicinity of forts where political prisoners are held will supply decent lodgings and subsistence for such prisoners, unless they shall prefer to provide in those respects for themselves, in which cases they will be allowed to do so by the commanding officers in charge.

Approved, and the Secretary of State will transmit the order to marshals, the lieutenant-general, and Secretary of the Interior.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

{p.678}

–––

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, Washington, September 11, 1861.

Hon. SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.

SIR: I have the honor to inclose a letter to General Dix which, if it meets your approval, I would be glad to have you sign and allow me to send it to General Dix by Allen.* From the best information I can obtain it would seem necessary to arrest at once the parties named. I have indicated Fort Monroe as their first destination in order to get them away from Baltimore as quietly as possible, and would suggest that they ultimately be sent North.

Very respectfully, yours,

GEO. B. MCCLELLAN, Major-General, U. S. Army.

P. S.-I am informed that the Legislature meets the 14th.

* Allan Pinkerton, who under the assumed name of E. J. Allen was chief of McClellan’s secret service force. See McClellan’s report, pp. 51, 52, Series I, Vol. V.-COMPILER.

[Inclosure.]

WAR DEPARTMENT, September 11, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, U. S. Army, Baltimore, Md.

GENERAL: You are directed to arrest forthwith the following-named persons, viz: T. Parkin Scott, S. Teackle Wallis, Henry M. Warfield, F. Key Howard, Thomas W. Hall, jr., and Henry May,* and to keep them in close custody, suffering no one to communicate with them, and to convey them at once to Fortress Monroe there to remain in close custody until they shall be forwarded to their ultimate destination. You will also seize their papers and cause them to be carefully examined. The exigencies of the Government demand a prompt and successful execution of this order. You will please report your proceedings at once to this Department. Mr. E. J. Allen is sent to take the immediate charge of the arrests and examination of papers under your general control, and you will please furnish him the necessary military force.

I am, sir, very, &c.,

SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.

* After this volume was in type access was happily obtained by consent of Hon. Walter Q. Gresham, secretary of State, to the archives of the Department of State, and many valuable documents found relating to various Maryland arrests which do not appear herein. For the cases of May, Howard, Hall, Dr. Charles Macgill and miscellaneous correspondence relating to other Maryland prisoners of state see Vol. 11, this Series.-COMPILER.

–––

WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, September 11, 1861.

Maj. Gen. N. P. BANKS, Commanding, near Darnestown, Md.

GENERAL: The passage of any act of secession by the Legislature of Maryland must be prevented. If necessary all or any part of the members {p.679} must be arrested. Exercise your own judgment as to the time and manner, but do the work effectively.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore. Md., September 11, 1861-11 p.m.

Hon. SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.

SIR: Your letter was handed to me half an hour ago by Mr. Allen, who is of the opinion that in consideration of the lateness of the hour and the uncertainty of finding all of the parties the arrests should be deferred till to-morrow night. I will detain the steamer so that they can be taken directly on board. No effort or precaution will be spared to carry your order into execution promptly and effectually.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

FREDERICK, September 12, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.

SIR: An adjourned session of the Legislature of Maryland will meet in extra session at this place on Tuesday, 17th instant.

Many loyal citizens believe that at the coming session some effort will be made on the part of the “Tory” majority to convulse the State and force it into an attitude of hostility to the Government. Already it is believed in intelligent quarters that at the last extra session it was decided in a caucus of the majority to pass an ordinance of secession at their next meeting at all hazards. Perhaps, sir, these beliefs are unfounded apprehensions but the magnitude of the risk should leave no foothold for uncertainty, and surely the course of the legislative majority has not been one to inspire confidence. Prevention of evil is what the loyal citizens of Maryland desire and this is almost secured by the interposition of the Federal Government in the arrest and detention of Thomas J. McKaig, State senator from Allegany.

There are twenty-two senators, of whom twelve is the requisite majority to enact a law. Of the present senators eight are loyal and reliable, leaving fourteen in whom I have no faith and I speak the sentiment of many.

Of the fourteen referred to McKaig as already stated is a political prisoner; Yellott is among the rebels and we do not fear he will return; and it is rumored that Heckart is evading the Federal authorities. If this rumor be true and Heckart remains away the people will feel secure from legislative disloyalty; but if not true we hold it to be the duty of the Federal Government under its constitutional obligation (Article IV, section 4) to guarantee to Maryland a republican form of government and protect her from domestic violence; to interpose and cause the arrest of those senators whose notorious disaffection to the Government causes popular alarm here and is calculated to produce civil strife under pretext of law.

I should have referred this subject to your honorable colleague, the Postmaster-General, with whom I have a personal acquaintance, but {p.680} for his absence from the seat of government as announced in the public journals and but for the fact that a longer delay would be impolitic. These desultory remarks hastily thrown together may still be suggestive, and if they produce the result I desire in guaranteeing order and security in Maryland I shall feel that I have done a good work in bringing the subject to your notice.

With sentiments of great respect, your obedient servant,

FREDERICK SCHLEY, Editor of the Examiner.

[Inclosure.]

Senate of Maryland.

By provision of the constitution of Maryland (Article III, section 6) the senate is divided into two classes, one of which is elected every two years.

On the 6th of November next eleven senators will be chosen for four years, while the eleven elected in 1859 hold over until November, 1863.

The following statement will explain the condition of the senate:

Holding over until 1863.-Allegany, Thomas J. McKaig; Baltimore City, Coleman Yellott; Baltimore County, Dr. A. A. Lynch; Cecil, John J. Heckart; Harford, Franklin Whittaker; Howard, John S. Watkins; Kent, David C. Blackiston; Worcester, Teagle Townsend-Secession, S. Carroll, John E. Smith; Dorchester, Charles F. Goldsborough; Talbott, Henry H. Goldsborough-Union, 3.

To be elected in 1861.– Anne Arundel, Thomas Franklin; Charles, John F. Gardiner; Montgomery, Dr. Washington Duvall; Prince George’s, John B. Brooke; Saint Mary’s, Oscar Miles; Somerset, James F. Dashiell-Secession, 6.

Caroline, Tilghman Nuttle; Calvert, Thomas J. Graham; Frederick, Anthony Kimmel; Queen Anne’s, S. J. Bradley; Washington, John G. Stone-Union, 5.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF VIRGINIA, &C., Fort Monroe, September 14, 1861.

Capt. P. A. DAVIS, Provost-Marshal, Fort Monroe.

SIR: Captain Davis, provost-marshal, will have special charge of the state prisoners, fifteen in number, recently arrived from Baltimore by order of the Secretary of War who directs that they be confined in close custody and without communication with any person whatever.

He will detail an intelligent sergeant and corporal and twelve men from his company as a guard for the prisoners. One sentinel will be placed in front of the casemate with the sergeant and corporal, one sentinel will be placed in the casemate adjoining on the left and one in the casemate adjoining on the right and one on the bank of the moat opposite the embrasures of the casemates occupied by the prisoners. This sentinel is to guard particularly these embrasures and to see that no prisoner escapes through them and that they have no conversation or communication with him or any other person. No one is to be allowed to pass his beat.

The same instructions will be given to all the sentinels placed as guards that no conversation or communication whatever will be allowed with the prisoners. A table and writing materials will be furnished; whatever else they may require for their comfort will be made known {p.681} in writing and if it relates to provisions or other reasonable supplies it will be furnished in the presence of the provost-marshal and without a word being said to the prisoners.

The provost-marshal will have no further conversation with the prisoners than may be required in regard to their supplies and comfort, and will in the course of each twenty-four hours ascertain from time to time by personal inspection that all the prisoners are in custody. The prisoners will be allowed to communicate with their friends or others in writing, but all such communications must be submitted before being sent to the commanding general and the prisoners must be informed of this restriction. Your company will be relieved from any other detail than the guard above mentioned for the time being.

The knives, forks and other articles for the table of the prisoners must be counted before they are sent in by one of the officers of the provost guard who shall see that the same number is returned after each meal.

By command of Major-General Wool:

LE GRAND B. CANNON, Aide-de-Camp.

–––

IMPORTANT AND CONFIDENTIAL.]

HEADQUARTERS, Camp near Darnestown, September 16, 1861.

Lieutenant-Colonel RUGER, Comdg. Third Wisconsin Regt., on special service at Frederick.

SIR: The Legislature of Maryland is appointed to meet in special session to-morrow, Tuesday, September 16. It is not impossible that the members or a portion of them may be deterred from meeting there on account of certain arrests recently made in Baltimore. It is also quite possible that on the first day of meeting the attendance may be small. Of the facts as to this matter I shall see that you are well informed as they transpire. It becomes necessary that any meeting of this Legislature at any place or time shall be prevented.

You will hold yourself and your command in readiness to arrest the members of both houses. A list* of such as you are to detain will be inclosed to you herewith, among whom are to be specially included the presiding officers of the-two houses, secretaries, clerks and all subordinate officials. Let the arrest be certain and allow no chance of failure. The arrests should be made while they are in session I think.

You will upon the receipt of this quietly examine the premises. I am informed that escape will be impossible if the entrance to the building be held by you; of that you will judge upon examination. If no session is to be held you will arrest such members as can be found in Frederick. The process of arrest should be to enter both houses at the same time announcing that they were arrested by orders of the Government. Command them to remain as they are subject to your orders.

Any resistance will be forcibly suppressed whatever the consequences. Upon these arrests being effected the members that are to be detained will be placed on board a special train for Annapolis where a steamer will await them.

Everything in the execution of these orders is confided to your secrecy, discretion and promptness.

N. P. BANKS, Major-General.

* Not found, but see Copeland to Banks, p. 682.

{p.682}

–––

[WASHINGTON], September 17, 1861.

MY DEAR SEWARD: In order to gratify Johnson I say that the release of Ross Winans will not pain me, but he is the only one of the Maryland rebels that should be suffered to go at large.

SIMON CAMERON.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF VIRGINIA, Fort Monroe, September 18, 1861.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN, President of the United States.

SIR: The bearer of this letter, Major Cannon, has been acting on my staff as aide-de-camp for about two weeks. From his ability and opportunity for information he has become familiar with many important questions relating to this department and will be able to explain various circumstances connected with it that concern the public service and for this purpose he goes by my direction to Washington.

...

The state prisoners arrested in Baltimore (the mayor and others) have been here for several days in close custody without any direct authority or instructions from the Government, the only official communication to me on this subject being an extract from a letter addressed to General Dix and sent me by the latter. I have written to the Secretary of War in regard to them but have received no reply. Major Cannon can explain fully their condition and the difficulty I have in keeping them safely from the crowded state of the fort without injury to their health from insufficient air and ventilation.

...

With considerations of high respect, I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN E. WOOL, Major-General.

–––

DARNESTOWN, MD., September 18, 1861.

Governor SEWARD:

But four present at opening yesterday. Eighteen s- only in town. Twelve secured up to 5 p.m. Probably all last night.

N. P. BANKS.

–––

FREDERICK, MD., September 18, 1861.

Major-General BANKS, Darnestown.

SIR: I have just telegraphed to General Dix that we have seized seven members of the house of a very bitter character, and four officers, clerks, &c., who are intensely bitter and are said to have been very forward and to have kept some of the weaker men up to the work. Several arrests were made of violent or resisting persons whom I shall let go after the others are gone. I shall send four men at least to General Dix, at Baltimore, who are very bad men. I have advised Colonel Ruger to send to Sharpsburg Landing to seize 500 sacks of salt which are waiting for the Southerners to come and take them. They have tried twice to do it. We have also heard of some arms which {p.683} the colonel will look up. There is a very bitter man here-a Mr. Sinn-who is currently reported by General Shriver and others to be the medium of communication with the Southern Confederacy. The names of the members are: W. E. Salmon, R. C. McCubbin, J. H. Gordon, C. J. Durant, Thomas J. Claggett, Andrew Kessler and Bernard Mills. We shall get J. Lawrence Jones. The officers of the Legislature: J. M. Brewer, chief clerk of the senate; Thomas H. Moore, reading clerk; Samuel Penrose, jr., assistant; W. Kilgour, reading clerk; Milton Y. Kidd, chief clerk of the house. Mr. Jones is taken; Edward Houser, citizen; Riley (very bad), printer to the house; John Hogan (very bad), citizen; Joseph Elkins, citizen; Mr. Mason, folder to the house. We shall leave here for headquarters this afternoon. The arrested were nearly all seized by the policemen.

I am, yours, respectfully,

R MORRIS COPELAND, Aide-de-Camp.

Mr. McCubbin is a person whom I should recommend you to set at large if he takes the oath which I have no doubt he will. He is brother-in-law to General Hammond and a man much respected; also a man of rather timid nature and greatly troubled by his arrest. General Shriver has been very active for us and is very earnest that we should let him go on these terms. If you can do it it will be well to telegraph to Annapolis to have the oath tendered and release him. I should do it under my instructions only that Colonel Ruger thinks he has no authority to allow any man on the list any liberty.

R. M. C.

–––

STATE OF MARYLAND, FREDERICK COUNTY, TO WIT:

I do solemnly swear that I will bear allegiance to the United States of America, and that I will support, protect and defend the Constitution and Government thereof against all enemies whether foreign or domestic, and I will bear true faith and loyalty to the same any ordinance, resolution or law of any State, convention or Legislature to the contrary notwithstanding, and further that I do this with a full determination, pledge and purpose without any mental reservation or evasion whatsoever; and further that I will well and faithfully perform the duties which may be required of me by law. So help me God.

Milton Y. Kidd, Win. Kilgour, E. A. Hanson, Jos. D. Elkins, John Huger, S. P. Carmack, Thos. H. Moore, Thos. Mason, E. S. Riley.

Subscribed and sworn before me the subscriber, a justice of the peace in and for Frederick County, this 18th day of September, A. D. 1861.

W. MAHONY.

–––

WASHINGTON, September 19, 1861.

Governor SEWARD.

DEAR GOVERNOR: General Edward Hammond, of Howard County, Md., desires the release of his brother-in-law, Dr. Richard C. McCubbin, of the Maryland House of Delegates. General Hammond himself is the main stay of our cause in Howard and he represents that McCubbin {p.684} is not at all in favor of secession and is perfectly willing to take the oath of allegiance to the Government; has always voted against every measure tending to take the State out of the Union in the Legislature and refused to take part in the local proceedings of the disunionists.

Under these circumstances I think it highly proper that Doctor McCubbin be immediately discharged.

Yours, respectfully,

M. BLAIR.

–––

BALTIMORE, September 19, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

DEAR SIR: Allow me to congratulate you upon the Government manifesting its strong arm in giving the quietus to our so-called Legislature. It has had a salutary influence in many respects and has soothed down the temper of the disunionists prodigiously. It is to be hoped the Government will now be strong enough to arrest such characters as Breckinridge, Magoffin and Burnett, of Kentucky, when we shall soon have a recurrence all over the country of the good old cry of Whig times of Clay and Webster of “Palsied be the hand and the heart of him that dares dissolve this Union.” We hope the President will not have cause to break with General Frémont. The Government can afford to incur the ire of civilians but cannot afford to lose real generals at this time. Our city is unusually quiet and orderly and we feel safe under the parental care of Uncle Sam. We are progressing with our regiments as fast as possible; and at the proper time I shall beg to have the President’s eye and your eye as I have my eye on the consulship to Shanghai.

With great respect, your obedient servant,

ARTHUR RICH, M. D.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Camp near Darnestown, September 20, 1861.

Col. R. B. MARCY, Chief of Staff, &c.

SIR: I have the honor to report in obedience to the order of the Secretary of War and the general commanding the Army of the Potomac transmitted to me by letter of the 12th instant that all the members of the Maryland Legislature assembled at Frederick City on the 17th instant known or suspected to be disloyal in their relations to the Government have been arrested.

The opening of the session was attended chiefly by Union men and after rigid examination but nine secession members were found in the city. These were arrested with the clerk of the senate and sent to Annapolis according to my orders on the 18th instant under guard and safely lodged on board a Government steamer in waiting for them. Of their destination thence I had no direction. The names of the parties thus arrested and disposed of were as follows, viz: W. E. Salmon, Frederick; R. C. McCubbin, Annapolis; William R. Miller, Cecil County; Thomas J. Claggett, Frederick; Josiah H. Gordon, Allegany County; Clarke J. Durant, Saint Mary’s County; J. Lawrence Jones, Talbot County; Andrew Kessler, jr., Frederick; Bernard Mills, Carroll County; J. M. Brewer, chief clerk of the senate.

{p.685}

No meeting of the senate occurred; but three senators were in town and those were Union men. Three subordinate officers of the senate-the chief clerk and printer of the house and one or two others-were also arrested but released after the departure of the members for Annapolis upon taking the oath of allegiance.

Milton Y. Kidd, clerk of the house, is in the last stages of consumption beyond the power of doing harm and was released upon taking the oath and making a solemn declaration to act no further with the Legislature under any circumstances whatever. This course was adopted upon the urgent solicitation of the Union members present. The same parties desired the release of B. C. McCubbin, of Annapolis, upon the same condition. I telegraphed to the commander of the steamer that he might be left at Annapolis under sufficient guard until the orders of the Government could be ascertained.

Colonel Ruger, Third Wisconsin Regiment, Lieutenant Copeland, my aide-de-camp, and a detachment of police rendered efficient aid.

Sufficient information was obtained as to preparations for board, &c., to lead to the belief that the attendance of members would have been large had not the arrest of some of the leaders been made at Baltimore on Saturday and Monday before the day of meeting.

I regret the attempt at Frederick was not more successful.

I have the honor to be, with great respect, your obedient servant,

N. P. BANKS, Major-General, Commanding Division.

–––

FORT MCHENRY, September 20, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD:

I have arrested and put on board the Baltimore E. G. Kilbourn, a dangerous secessionist, president of the house of delegates. There are two of the arrested persons whose release would I am confident promote the Union cause, and since the Legislature is effectually broken up the Government cannot be injured and may vindicate its justice by its clemency in these cases. One is James U. Dennis, member from Somerset, and the other Philip F. Rasin, member from Kent. The first is a man of standing. Has never been violent and offers to take the oath of allegiance. The other is a man, of little consequence but is connected with Union families. A delegation of Union men from the county were here this morning and ask his release on taking the oath.

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

–––

STATE OF MARYLAND, EXECUTIVE CHAMBER, Annapolis, September 20, 1861.

Maj. Gen. N. P. BANKS.

DEAR SIR: We have some of the product of your order here in the persons of some eight or ten members of the State Legislature soon I learn to depart for healthy quarters. We see the good fruit already produced by the arrests. We can no longer mince matters with these desperate people. I concur in all you have done.

With great respect, your obedient servant,

THO. H. HICKS.

{p.686}

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, September 20, 1861.

Col. MARTIN BURKE, Fort Hamilton, N. Y.

COLONEL: Mr. Ross Winans, of Baltimore, who has been or will be transferred to Fort Lafayette is an aged person and as it is understood rather infirm. I will consequently thank you to cause his confinement there to be as lenient as you conveniently can compatible with his safe-keeping.

I am, colonel, your very obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, September 21, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN E. WOOL, Fortress Monroe, Va.

GENERAL: I have received your letter of the 18th instant relative to the political prisoners in your custody. In reply I would recommend that they be allowed decent fare and the privileges of air and exercise compatible with their safe-keeping. They must be watched during their confinement and be allowed to receive no visitors not authorized and when visited a commissioned officer must be present.

I am, general, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

FORT MCHENRY, September 21, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, State Department:

Colonel Morse telegraphed me to know whether Mr. Rasin could be offered the oath a second time. I answered no. If a man is so indifferent to the clemency of the Government [as] to refuse when it is first tendered I think a longer confinement will not be injurious to him. A strong interest is felt for Ross Winans who is an old man and very infirm. He did not as has been alleged vote for the Wallis resolutions and has faithfully kept his parole. If the Government knows no special reason to the contrary I think he might safely be discharged instead of Mr. Rasin.

JOHN A. DIX.

–––

STATE DEPARTMENT, September 21, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Fort McHenry, Baltimore:

You will please discharge Mr. James U. Dennis from custody.

WM. H. SEWARD.

–––

FORT MCHENRY, September 21, 1861.

WILLIAM H. SEWARD:

Mr. Dennis has taken the oath of allegiance. Mr. Rasin has declined to take it. I am very glad the latter was offered his discharge on condition of taking it. The indulgence tendered to him will strengthen the Government and his refusal to accept it indicates the justice of his arrest. ...

JOHN A. DIX.

{p.687}

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, September 21, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Fort McHenry, Baltimore:

Ross Winans may be discharged by renewing his parole which he gave on his former arrest.

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., September 22, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN E. WOOL, Comdg. Department of Virginia.

GENERAL: I have received a dispatch from Hon. William H. Seward, Secretary of State, in the following words:

Ross Winans may be discharged upon renewing the parole which he gave on his former arrest.

WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

I have the honor to inclose herein the parole* referred to transcribed from a copy at these headquarters and prepared for his signature. Should you think proper to send the parole when executed direct to the Secretary of State will you please send me a certified copy to be placed on file at these headquarters. Or if you will forward me the original I will forward it to the Department of State after taking a certified copy here.

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

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

* See p. 689. For record of Winans’ first arrest and discharge see pp. 571-572. For resolutions of the Maryland legislature concerning his first arrest, see p. 587.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., September 23, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I inclose a copy of a dispatch received on Saturday night. As the Baltimore had received orders to sail I did not telegraph it to you as I should otherwise have done.

I know nothing of the two gentlemen first named in it (Messrs. Claggett and Salmon) except that they are members of the House of Delegates from Frederick County and decided secessionists.

Mr. Landing is a member from Worcester County on the eastern shore of Maryland bordering on Accomac County, Va. He is represented to me as a man of no great consequence and it was reported to me that he came to Fort McHenry on the day of his arrest “pretty drunk.”

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

[Inclosure.]

ANNAPOLIS, September 21, 1861.

General DIX, Eutaw House.

We are willing to take the oath taken by Dennis. Can we be discharged?

T. J. CLAGGETT, W. E. SALMON, G. W. LANDING.

{p.688}

–––

WASHINGTON, D. C., September 23, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.

SIR: On the 11th instant in pursuance of the orders of the Hon. Simon Cameron, Secretary of War, and Major-General McClellan I went to Baltimore, accompanied by a sufficient number of my detective force and Lieut. W. M. Wilson, of the Fourth U. S. Cavalry. On arriving at Baltimore I proceeded to Fort McHenry and delivered to Major-General Dix an order from the War Department for the arrest of T. Parkin Scott, S. Teackle Wallis, Frank Key Howard, T. W. Hall, Henry May and H. M. Warfield. The said order mentioned to General Dix that I was directed to conduct the arrests, also to search for and seize the correspondence of the above-named parties.

On consultation with General Dix it was deemed advisable as it was now about midnight to postpone the attempt to arrest until the following night as it was impossible to tell if the parties to be arrested were in town or at their respective houses. General Dix directed me to call on Provost-Marshal Dodge and Assistant Provost-Marshal McPhail, of Baltimore, who would furnish me all the police force necessary to make the arrests. On the morning of the 12th instant I called on Messrs. Dodge and McPhail. I found them to be highly intelligent and able men for their respective positions, and arrangements were at once entered into between us for procuring the necessary information in relation to the probable whereabouts of the parties named to be arrested and the hour of midnight was fixed upon as the time to make the descent, Mr. McPhail detailing a sufficient police force to accompany my own force to each house.

At about 9.30 p.m. while at the provost-marshal’s office an order was received from Major-General Dix addressed to Provost-Marshal Dodge directing the arrest of George W. Brown, W. G. Harrison, Lawrence Sangston, Ross Winans, J. Hanson Thomas, Andrew A. Lynch, C. H. Pitts, L. G. Quinlan and Robert M. Denison. Arrangements were at once made for the arrest of the above-named parties which was accomplished daring the night and early on the following day (13th) they were all committed to Fort McHenry.

At about midnight the several divisions moved simultaneously upon the places where we had discovered Scott, Wallis, F. Key Howard, Hall, May and Warfield, and at that time all the above-named were arrested within fifteen minutes, their clothing thoroughly searched and immediately thereafter they were forwarded to Fort McHenry in separate carriages. My force made dilligent search for all correspondence on the premises of each of the parties all of which was seized.

Frank Key Howard being one of the editors of the Baltimore Exchange newspaper and T. W. Hall editor of the South, I construed the order to search for and seize correspondence of a treasonable nature in the possession of the parties arrested a sufficient warrant for me to enter and search the editorial and press rooms of the Exchange and South which I did, seizing the correspondence found therein.

All the correspondence found I brought with me to Washington and now beg leave respectfully to submit to you briefs of the same which I have had carefully prepared, retaining originals in my possession subject to your order.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

ALLAN PINKERTON.

{p.689}

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF VIRGINIA, Fort Monroe, Va., September 23, 1861.

General JOHN A. DIX, Commanding Department of Pennsylvania, Baltimore, Md.

SIR: I have received this morning your letter of the 22d inclosing copy of the dispatch of the Secretary of State directing the discharge of Mr. Ross Winans “upon his renewing the parole which he gave on his former arrest.” I have accordingly released Mr. Winans upon his executing the parole of which I herewith inclose to you to be forwarded as suggested in your letter to the Department of State. Mr. Winans returns to Baltimore I believe to-night.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN E. WOOL, Major-General.

[Inclosure.]

FORT MONROE, VA., September 23, 1861.

I, Ross Winans, of the city of Baltimore, do solemnly give my parole of honor that I will not openly or covertly commit any act of hostility against the Government of the United States pending existing troubles or hostilities between said Government and the Southern seceded States or any one of them.

ROSS WINANS.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Fort Hamilton, New York Harbor, September 24, 1861.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Asst. Adjt. Gen., Hdqrs. of the Army, Washington, D. C.:

I have the honor to inform you that I have this day received the following prisoners: Cyrus F. Sargeant. Lieutenant Wood also reports this morning of having received at Fort Lafayette of Charles Germain, acting master, U. S. Navy, the following prisoners, viz: W. E. Salmon, J. H. Gordon, C. J. Durant, Andrew Kessler, W. R. Miller, Thomas J. Claggett, Bernard Mills and J. Lawrence Jones, members of the Maryland Legislature; J. M. Brewer, clerk of the Maryland senate; Hon. John J. Heckart, senator, Maryland; James W. Maxwell, George W. Landing and Philip F. Rasin, delegates; Maryland; and Thomas Maddox, James Maddox and E. G. Kilbourn. For fifteen of them I gave my receipt. The last on the list, E. G. Kilbourn, I did not receipt for as his name was not on the list furnished. Fifteen was the number which Acting Master Germain had but when I came to call the roll I found one man who answered to the name as above.

I am, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,

MARTIN BURKE, Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF VIRGINIA, Fort Monroe, September 24, 1861.

Lieutenant-General SCOTT, General-in-Chief.

GENERAL: In accordance with the directions contained in your letter of the 18th instant I shall forward to-morrow by the steamer George {p.690} Peabody, the first suitable conveyance at my disposal, to the commanding officer at Fort Lafayette the political prisoners now in my custody arrested in Baltimore. These prisoners were originally fifteen in number but by direction of the Secretary of State through General Dix Mr. Ross Winans, of Baltimore, was yesterday released and permitted to return to his family. I inclose herewith copy of a letter to the commanding officer at Fort Lafayette in relation to these prisoners and which will be delivered to him by Captain Coster the officer in charge of them. The instructions contained in that letter are based upon the recommendations in regard to them made to me by the Secretary of State.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN E. WOOL, Major-General.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF VIRGINIA, Fort Monroe, September 24, 1861.

COMMANDING OFFICER, Fort Lafayette, New York Harbor.

SIR: By direction of Lieutenant-General Scott I forward to you for custody and safe-keeping at Fort Lafayette the following political prisoners arrested in Baltimore, fourteen in number, viz. *

...

I presume you will receive instructions in regard to them from the proper quarters. In the meantime according to the recommendation of the Secretary of State to me “they will be allowed decent fare and the privileges of air and exercise compatible with their safe-keeping” not going out of the fort. They must be watched during their confinement and allowed to receive no visitors not authorized by the authorities in Washington and when visited a commissioned officer must be present.

You will acknowledge the receipt of this communication and of the prisoners named in it. Such acknowledgment in writing will be handed to Captain Coster, the bearer of this letter, who will deliver the prisoners into your own custody.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN E. WOOL, Major-General.

* List omitted. Embraces all the names given in Pinkerton to Seward, p 658, except Ross Winans, who was returned to Baltimore and released.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF VIRGINIA, Fort Monroe, September 24, 1861.

Captain COSTER, First Regiment New York Volunteers. Fort. Monroe.

SIR: You are hereby detailed for special duty and will proceed to New York to-morrow in the steamer George Peabody with fourteen political prisoners now in custody here. They are as follows.*

...

{p.691}

You will take charge of these prisoners and keep them safely until you deliver them to the commanding officer at Fort Lafayette, New York Harbor, with the communication addressed to him and herewith handed to you. A guard consisting of a sergeant, corporal and ten men will be placed under your orders to keep watch over these prisoners while in your custody and to allow no communication with the crew of the steamer and only such with the captain and other persons as may be necessary for their comfort and convenience. You will see that these prisoners are properly cared for and well provided and allowed such opportunities for air and exercise as are compatible with their safe-keeping. Upon the delivery of these prisoners to the commanding officer of Fort Lafayette who is probably in command also of Fort Hamilton you will require from him an acknowledgment in writing that they are all placed in his custody, which acknowledgment you will bring with you on your return to these headquarters and submit it to me together with the report of your proceedings under thin letter of instructions.

After landing the prisoners at Fort Lafayette you will proceed in the steamer to New York. On the day following your arrival there you will return with the men in your charge by the first morning train via Baltimore taking the afternoon steamer for Fort Monroe. You will be entitled to transportation at the expense of the Government for yourself and your men and I herewith inclose the necessary papers for that purpose.

The service with which I have charged you is of a delicate and important character and I confide in your vigilance and discretion for its proper performance.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN E. WOOL, Major-General.

* Names omitted.

–––

WASHINGTON, D. C., September 25, 1861.

Hon. SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War.

DEAR SIR: As the treasonable documents of the Legislature of Maryland were seized I think that the journals of all the sessions should be seized also. The journals from the first session to the last have treasonable speeches and also the reports of S. Teackle Wallis, chairman of committee on federal relations. There are several reports. The treasonable journals and documents are at Kelly, Hedian & Piet, booksellers and binders Baltimore street, between Saint Paul and Calvert streets, Baltimore. There are about 1,500 copies.

I was an officer of the Legislature at the first extra session and for my unconditional Union sentiments they abolished my office. For reference, &c., I refer you to Governor Hicks or General Banks.

Your humble servant,

GEO. W. HOWARD, JR., Baltimore.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, September 27, 1861.

Maj. Gen. N. P. BANKS, Darnestown, Md.

GENERAL: Representations are made to me that Mr. Gordon, a member of the Legislature, recently arrested and now confined at Fort {p.692} Lafayette, N. Y., is a loyal man. Will you please institute an inquiry into the facts and inform me whether in your judgment it would be best to release him on taking the oath of allegiance.

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

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Fort Hamilton, New York Harbor, September 27, 1861.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Asst. Adjt. Gen., Hdqrs. of the Army, Washington City.

SIR: Yesterday evening I received the following prisoners from General Wool. They are now confined at Fort Lafayette. They were receipted for to Captain Coster, U. S. Army: George W. Brown, S. Teackle Wallis, Henry M. Warfield, Charles H. Pitts, T. Parkin Scott, Lawrence Sangston, J. Hanson Thomas, William G. Harrison; Leonard G. Quinlan, Robert M. Denison, F. K. Howard, Andrew A. Lynch, Thomas W. Hall and Henry May.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

MARTIN BURKE, Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Camp at Darnestown, September 30, 1861.

Hon. Mr. SEWARD, Secretary of State, &c.

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your note making inquiry concerning Mr. Gordon, late a member of the Maryland Legislature. In a day or two I will send you the views of Governor Hicks and General Ewd. Shriver, of Frederick, both moderate and well-informed men. To-day I send a statement of Lieutenant Copeland detailing what took place at the time of Mr. Gordon’s arrest. It seems he made no secret at all of his sympathy with secessionists, qualifying his opinions by the remark that he had no intention of doing any act as a member of the Legislature which could be considered disloyal to the Union. Those acts most questioned by Union men he interprets as loyal in purpose and character. I understand he had taken the oath of allegiance before having been arrested in Washington or elsewhere near that city. Lieutenant Copeland believes if Mr. Gordon were to take this oath he would scrupulously observe it-this from the frankness with which he declared his sympathies with the South. Mr. Copeland’s statement can be implicitly relied upon.

I have the honor to be, with great respect, your obedient servant,

N. P. BANKS, Major-General, Commanding Division.

[Inclosure.]

HEADQUARTERS MAJOR-GENERAL BANKS’ DIVISION, September 28, 1861.

Major-General BANKS.

SIR: In reply to your inquiry I will state the substance of the conversation between Mr. Gordon and myself.

I expressed my regret that any men should have been so foolish as to determine to hold the legislative session at that time. He said that {p.693} he should not pretend to disguise the fact that he had always sympathized with the secessionists; that he was connected and interested with the South but that he did not mean to aid in passing any dangerous resolves at the proximate session of the Legislature.

He added that he did not consider what the Legislature had done as warranting any interference by Government.

I mentioned the Wallis resolutions. He said that they did not look to disturbing the public peace.

We had other conversation of a general character which I do not recall.

I am, yours, respectfully,

R. MORRIS COPELAND, Aide-de-Camp.

–––

FREDERICK, MD., September 30, 1861.

General N. P. BANKS.

MY DEAR SIR: I received your favor of the 28th last night and hasten to reply.

About a month since Mr. Gordon was arrested at the Relay House, carried to Washington and there detained for some days where as I learn through the public prints he was released upon taking the oath of allegiance.

Since then I have no knowledge of his opinions or actions. Previous to his arrest he was regarded as second only to S. T. Wallis in his opposition to the State and Federal governments.

If he again takes the oath of allegiance and with it an obligation not to return to this State until after the election I do not see how the Union cause would suffer by his discharge.

From my personal knowledge of Pitts, of Baltimore City; Durant, of Saint Mary’s; Landing, of Worcester, and Salmon, of Frederick, I am of the opinion that they might be released without injury to the cause upon their taking the oath of allegiance; their discharge would I believe be productive of good.

With great respect, I am, very truly, yours,

EDWARD SHRIVER.

–––

EXECUTIVE CHAMBER, Annapolis, October 2, 1861.

Major-General BANKS, U. S. Army.

MY DEAR SIR: In regard to case of Mr. Gordon, member of house of delegates, Maryland, there may be mitigating circumstances but if indeed so it is unknown to me. He, Mr. Gordon, is considered ultra by those who know him better than I do.

Whilst it is proper to release those against whom improprieties are not proven it has bad effect to release too many after arrest where they are not made clearly innocent. The effect produced by the recent arrests made are marked for good. Mr. Gordon has rendered himself so obnoxious to the Union men of Cumberland (his home) that they refuse to let him return.

Very truly and obediently yours,

THOS. H. HICKS.

{p.694}

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 9, 1861.

Lieut. Col. MARTIN BURKE, Fort Lafayette, N. Y.

SIR: Let Dr. Charles Macgill, a prisoner held in your custody, be released on his taking the oath of allegiance and engaging that he will neither enter any of the States in insurrection against the authority of the Government of the United States nor hold any correspondence or communication whatever with them during the present hostilities without permission from the Secretary of State.

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

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 11, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Fort McHenry, Baltimore.

GENERAL: I inclose a note* to me of this date from Mr. Blair, the Postmaster-General, and ask your attention to that part of it which recommends the release of Mr. T. Parkin Scott.

I am, general, your very obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

* Not found.

–––

FORT HAMILTON, N. Y. HARBOR, October 11, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: ... Dr. Charles Macgill refuses to take the oath upon the plea that there is no charge against him.*

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

MARTIN BURKE, Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding.

* November 29 the Secretary of State issued a second order to release Macgill, which he again refused for the same reason. See p. 748 for order for his final release.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., October 12, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 11th instant inclosing a note from the Postmaster-General and asking my attention to that part of it which recommends the release of Mr. T. Parkin Scott.

I should be very sorry to discourage any kind feeling on the part of the Government in regard to the disloyal men of this State who have been taken into custody though I think there are a number of them who should not be released until the Confederates have laid down their arms. I will not say now that Mr. Scott is one of them, but I earnestly hope he may not be released until after the 6th of November, the day of the general election in this State. I think it will be carried triumphantly, but the Union men who are putting forth their strength ought not to be disheartened by turning loose among them those who have been arrested for their open hostility to the Government of their country. When we have put down opposition effectually as I think we shall the clemency of the Government may be exercised to great advantage and will meet the approbation of all.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, yours,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

{p.695}

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 12, 1861.

Lieut. Col. MARTIN BURKE, Fort Lafayette, N. Y.

SIR: I herewith inclose a letter * from John M. Brewer addressed to his brother which you will please return to its author and tell him it is disloyal and cannot be sent; but if he desires to send the same order in a suitable letter this Department will cheerfully forward it.

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

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

* Not found.

–––

FORT LAFAYETTE, N. Y., October 12, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD.

SIR: I am a State prisoner at this place; the charge against me I know not other than a member of the Legislature of Maryland. I have considered myself a Union man, for the rights of my State in the Union and not out of it. I therefore ask your favorable consideration that I may return to my home.

Respectfully, yours,

WM. E. SALMON.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 15, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore, Md.

GENERAL: I have the honor to transmit to you herewith a letter from Lieutenant-Colonel Burke with its inclosure received at this Department relative to a prisoner named Quinlan confined at Fort Lafayette. Shall I release him on his taking the oath of allegiance and on parole not to go into Maryland or any insurrectionary State until permission is granted by me? Please remit to me with your answer this inclosure.

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

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

[Inclosure.]

HEADQUARTERS, Fort Hamilton, New York Harbor, October 13, 1861.

Col. E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

SIR: Inclosed you will receive a letter from L. G. Quinlan a prisoner in Fort Lafayette.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

MARTIN BURKE, Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding.

[Sub-inclosure.]

FORT LAFAYETTE, N. Y., October 10, 1861.

His Excellency A. LINCOLN, President of the United States.

SIR: I have been held in confinement for four weeks under the supposition that as a member of the Legislature of Maryland, being a delegate from Baltimore County, I intended to vote for an ordinance to {p.696} carry the State of Maryland out of the Union, whereas upon reference to the journal of votes and proceedings of the house of delegates of Maryland it will be found that I voted for a resolution declaring that the Legislature had no-constitutional authority to pass such an ordinance and I positively declare that I do not and never have entertained such a proposition.

For some time past I have been suffering from a chronic affection of the bowels and since my confinement my disease has so increased on me that my health has become much impaired and my life is greatly endangered by my imprisonment. I have been ever since my arrival here confined in a damp and close casemate paved with brick and without fire or any convenience for making a fire in the room.

Under these circumstances I hope that you will at once order my release.

I am, &c.,

L. G. QUINLAN.

–––

FORT HAMILTON, N. Y., October 12, 1861.

We, the undersigned prisoners in Fort Lafayette, certify that Mr. L. G. Quinlan is suffering under a chronic affection of the bowels and believe his further confinement will endanger his life.

ANDREW A. LYNCH, M. D. CHAS. MACGILL, M. D. J. HANSON THOMAS, M. D. BERNARD MILLS, M. D.

Having examined L. G. Quinlan, prisoner at Fort Lafayette, and having had him under my care for some two or three weeks I concur in the opinion given by the above signed medical men.

R. D. LYNDE, Assistant Surgeon, U. S. Army.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 16, 1861.

Lieut. Col. MARTIN BURKE, Fort Lafayette, N. Y.

COLONEL: Representations are made to me that Henry M. Warfield, a prisoner in your custody, is in feeble health and this is to inform you that this Department will receive any communication from Mr. W. on that subject which he may wish to make. If he desires it you will permit a physician to visit him for the purpose of making a medical examination.

I am, colonel, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., October 16, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: Hon. L. G. Quinlan, a delegate from Baltimore County, is a man of no political influence, of very moderate abilities and by no means a violent secessionist. His arrest would not have been thought {p.697} of had he not been a member of the Legislature. These considerations and the state of his health render his release peculiarly proper. The conditions you suggest are reasonable and I think should be complied with, i.e., to take the oath of allegiance and give his parole of honor not to enter Maryland or any insurrectionary State without your permission.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

P. S.-The papers sent to me are here inclosed.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Baltimore, Md., October 18, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: Your order for the arrest of Senator McKaig was received at 8 p.m. yesterday and he was in custody at 11.30.

I send a letter from him by a special messenger who takes a dispatch to Colonel Marcy, chief of General McClellan’s staff, and who is instructed to receive your orders.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General, Commanding.

–––

FORT MCHENRY, October 18, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: In the last of August I was arrested at my residence in Cumberland, Md., by the military then stationed at that place and sent to Grafton, Va., the headquarters of Brig. Gen. B. F. Kelley. After remaining there until the evening of the 3d of September I was authorized by General Kelley to go to Ohio (of which State I am a native and still own a large property in Columbiana County, Ohio), and also to visit Pennsylvania on my own private business at my own expense. I was not to visit any part of Maryland except the city of Baltimore and that for the purpose of obtaining money to pay my expenses.

It was my wish and General Kelley’s intention that I should not return to Cumberland until after the November election simply because I did not wish to take part or be involved in the contest. After spending six weeks in Ohio and Pennsylvania (not being known in that part of Pennsylvania where I was spending my time in geological studies) my money gave out and lest I should give out also I came yesterday to Baltimore to replenish. I arrived at 4 o’clock from Philadelphia and obtained the little money I needed and would have gone back to Pennsylvania this morning in the first train for that city but was arrested at the Eutaw House last night at 10.30 o’clock. I send you a certified copy of General Kelley’s permit. General Kelley heard my case and with the statements of all parties before him he gave me the permit. My parole I have kept strictly. I have not said one word to any person living nor have I written a word to any one on the subject of politics. No one in that part of Pennsylvania where I have been knew who I was, what my political sentiments were or whether I had any.

{p.698}

I do not ask to be released but only that General Kelley’s permit and my parole of honor may be respected and that I may be permitted to return to Pennsylvania. After the November election has passed I will return to General Kelley and he can then dispose of me as he may then think proper or you may order, but at present you would do me a great personal favor by permitting me to return at once to Pennsylvania and Ohio where my pecuniary interests imperatively call me. No one has made any charge against me save that I am called a secessionist. I defy the world or any one in it to say that I ever uttered a secession sentiment in my life. I offered the resolutions in the State senate saying that we would not involve Maryland in secession and in advocating those resolutions I said on the floor of the senate that any Marylander who was in favor of Maryland’s seceding was not fit to be outside of a lunatic asylum. I say so yet and say also secession cannot get one vote in the Maryland senate as it is now constituted or I have been utterly deceived by the members. May I ask an order from you to cast me out of this place upon the cold charities of the world?

With high regard, I am, your obedient servant,

THOMAS J. MCKAIG.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 18, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore, Md.

GENERAL: Your letter returning papers in case of Quinlan has been duly received and I have ordered his release on the conditions proposed.

I am, general, your very obedient servant,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 18, 1861.

Col. MARTIN BURKE, Fort Lafayette, N. Y.

COLONEL: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 15th instant inclosing two letters addressed respectively to Mrs. F. K. Howard and Mrs. J. Hanson Thomas, Baltimore, Md. They both contain disloyal sentiments and cannot be forwarded. I have retained them.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 18, 1861.

Col. MARTIN BURKE, Fort Lafayette, N. Y.

SIR: Will you please inform Mr. William B. Salmon, a prisoner in your custody, that his letter of the 12th instant has been received and that his case is now under consideration.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

{p.699}

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 19, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore, Md.

SIR: Let Thomas J. McKaig, a prisoner confined in Fort McHenry, be released on engaging upon oath to keep his parole given to General Kelley.

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

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

FORT HAMILTON, N. Y., October 19, 1861.

Lieutenant-Colonel BURKE, U. S. Army, Commanding.

SIR: I have the honor to report that in obedience to your instructions* I have had an interview with Henry M. Warfield, a prisoner at Fort Lafayette, and that he declines at present to make any application for his release on the score of health as he does not feel that he is now suffering from his confinement.

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

R. D. LYNDE, Assistant Surgeon, U. S. Army.

* Omitted.

–––

FORT MCHENRY, October 21, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD:

Mr. Graham has telegraphed me that-Senator McKaig is unconditionally released and that a copy of the document is mailed to me. I shall not get it until 10 o’clock and Mr. McKaig wishes to go to Philadelphia early to-morrow morning. Shall I let him go?

JOHN A. DIX.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, October 21, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore, Md.:

General Dix will release Thomas J. McKaig from custody.

WILLIAM II. SEWARD.

–––

RIVERSDALE, NEAR HYATTSVILLE, MD., October 22, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

DEAR SIR: Inclosed you will find a letter from one of our best Union men relative to the releasement of Mr. Claggett, a member of the late house of delegates of Maryland. His brother-in-law, the Rev. Mr. Chew, the rector of our church here, has requested my kind offices in his behalf; and as I take it for granted there is nothing very criminal in his conduct and as I do not believe he would be able if so disposed to do much injury I ask a favorable consideration of his case and if compatible with the public good, his release.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

CHAS. B. CALVERT.

{p.700}

[Inclosure.]

WOODLIE WASHINGTON COUNTY MD., October 10, 1861.

Hon. CHARLES B. CALVERT.

MY DEAR SIR: I write to beg you to see Mr. Seward and effect the release if possible of Mr. Thomas J. Claggett, a member of the Legislature of Maryland from Frederick County, now a state prisoner at Fort Lafayette. Mr. Claggett is not in favor of secession; and has never given “aid or comfort” to the enemy; is a quiet and peaceable farmer. He was arrested in his house-on his farm. His arrest I believe was at the instance of evil-disposed neighbors who have misrepresented-probably misunderstood-his position. I feel confident that the charge of treason against him cannot be sustained.

I would apologize for the effort to tax your time and patience in the case did I not recognize in you a patriot and philanthropist whose pleasure it is to see justice done and to aid those who are not able to see themselves righted without assistance.

With high regard, I remain, your obedient servant,

THOMAS MADDOX.

N. B.-I inclose this letter to Mr. Chew who will see and co-operate with you in this matter.

T. M.

–––

BALTIMORE, October 29, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

SIR: I beg leave to unite with the friends of S. Teackle Wallis, esq., in an application to you for his release from confinement. I have known Mr. Wallis well from his early manhood and have never known a man of purer honor. His reputation as a gentleman of high literary attainments and extensive social influence is known to you. I do not know a man of a more extensive and more attached circle of friends. Among these I have always held a position although always differing from him politically.

I do not understand Mr. Wallis to be charged with any crime; his arrest if I am correctly informed is precautionary only. I have conversed with Mr. Wallis frequently upon the political issues of the day, and have never supposed that he entertained any purposes which could make such a step proper or necessary. I am most intimate and confidential with some of Mr. Wallis’ most intimate and confidential friends and feel sure from what I have learned from them that Mr. Wallis has not entertained the purposes ascribed to him as the grounds of his arrest and confinement. I deprecate the results at which Mr. Wallis’ enemies charge him to have aimed as much as any man: yet I have always deplored his arrest as uncalled for by sound policy and as a measure of public safety. Thinking so I take the liberty of saying that I shall be much gratified by his release, as will also be almost our entire society.

With very great respect, your obedient servant,

W. L. MARSHALL.

{p.701}

–––

BALTIMORE, October 29, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

DEAR SIR: As one of many deeply interested in the welfare of Mr. Wallis now confined at Fort Lafayette and desirous that an opportunity may be speedily furnished him of learning the character of the charges the Government may prefer against him I would most respectfully join my voice with those of his other warm personal friends who request of the Government an investigation.

It does not of course become strangers to the Government’s information to assume any particular character of charge. But as one who has known Mr. Wallis for many years and being aware of his often expressed views on the right of the Legislature to carry the State out of the Union which he has always denied; knowing too his character for uprightness, probity and consistency I cannot place any faith in the rumored charges of his participation in an alleged ordinance of secession to have been passed at the September meeting of the Legislature.

But as before said what the specific charges are I have no right to assume and only join with loyal citizens in praying a speedy examination into the grounds of the arrest.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHNSON, JR.

–––

PRIVATE.]

PHILADELPHIA, October 30, 1861.

Col. T. A. SCOTT.

DEAR SIR: I write you in behalf of J. J. Heckart who is now confined at Fort Lafayette. He is a Pennsylvanian by birth and was a member of the Maryland Senate. I have known Mr. Heckart for many years and believe at heart he is a fair man.

I have no doubt that he was influenced by the bad company he fell into when a member of the senate and perhaps he was imprudent in his expressions but I cannot believe he would do anything to imperil the country or to favor traitors. I think he has learned a sad lesson by the experience he has had thus far and he will be very careful for the future how he does anything either by word or deed to militate against the Government that has protected him and his all his life and to which he owes the most solemn allegiance. He is suffering in health, being afflicted with the heart disease which he inherits from his father. His family at Port Deposit are also in great trouble.

If his release could be sent to me I think I could use it in such a way as to make Heckart a good and loyal citizen for the future and to redound to the good of the Government. At any rate I would not be instrumental in procuring or giving him his release did I not feel confident it would be a safe and judicious thing for the Government.

Please think this over and if there is no testimony against him that proves positively that he is a traitor (which I cannot think is the case) do what you can to obtain his release if your judgment on mature reflection approves the measure.

Yours, truly,

S. M. FELTON.

{p.702}

[Indorsement.]

WAR DEPARTMENT, November 7, 1861.

MY DEAR SIR: Please examine the records of this case and if it be prudent send me a release for him and I will deliver it to Mr. Felton who can use it for good purposes.

Very truly, yours,

THOMAS A. SCOTT.

–––

BALTIMORE, November 4, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: As the partner and intimate personal friend of Mr. Wallis who has been now for more than six weeks in close confinement I feel it my duty respectfully to ask an early examination by you of his case.

I take the liberty of inclosing a printed copy of his letter to the New York Tribune in which he indignantly denies any complicity with the enemies of the Government or knowledge of their plans or purposes. The accompanying letters from gentlemen distinguished for their devotion to the Union you will doubtless recognize as entitled to your consideration. Permit me also to add that my own knowledge of Mr. Wallis’ most secret thoughts justifies me in saying that he had not only done nothing but had no purpose which if known to you would have induced you to order his arrest. I entertain entire confidence that I can remove if you will afford me an opportunity any unfavorable impression in regard to him which may have been made in your mind.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN H. THOMAS.

[Inclosure.]

LEGISLATURE OF MARYLAND, HOUSE OF DELEGATES, Frederick, August 7, 1861.

To THE EDITOR OF THE NEW YORK TRIBUNE:

SIR: I have no desire whatever to affect any opinions you may be pleased to entertain or express in regard to me but I do not think you are entitled to equal license in respect to matters of fact. I find in your paper of yesterday the following editorial paragraph:

We have the best authority for the statement that Mr. Jeff. Davis receives a daily letter from Mr. S. Teackle Wallis and others in Baltimore and keeps his friends there constantly informed of his wishes. His present advice to them is not now to attempt a rising as it would complicate matters unnecessarily; they are to wait for his arrival in the vicinity which he does not think will be much longer delayed.

Now I assert that I have never seen and have not the honor of knowing Mr. Davis; that I have never had any communication written or otherwise directly or indirectly with him or from him in my life, and am as wholly ignorant of his plans, purposes, wishes and advice as you can possibly be.

This gives me a fair opportunity to test and you to show what your deliberate statements in regard to such things are worth. I challenge you to produce your “best authority” for the statement in question and respectfully ask the insertion of this letter in your paper.

Your obedient servant,

S. T. WALLIS.

{p.703}

–––

CAMP BAKER, MD., November 8, 1861.

Brig. Gen. S. WILLIAMS:

... Perry Davis, the secession candidate for the Legislature, was arrested at Port Tobacco and brought in to me for making treasonable speeches during the canvass, but on his assuring me that he made them while running for office in a secession district and that in case of election which was probable he should vote against the ordinance for secession if an opportunity presented itself I deemed it politic to give him his liberty. Besides the election was over. ...

JOSEPH HOOKER, Brigadier-General, Commanding Division.

–––

FORT WARREN, BOSTON HARBOR, November 9, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washington.

SIR: I have the honor to inclose a letter addressed to me from Mr. L. G. Quinlan who is very desirous to return to his family in Maryland. He says he is willing to take the oath of allegiance with any stipulation which may be imposed provided he may return to his family. He appears to be in ill health and somewhat nervous and hypochondriacal.

I have the honor to inclose Doctor Peters’ certificate* of the ill health of Mr. Quinlan.

I am, sir, with the highest respect, your obedient servant,

J. DIMICK, Colonel First Artillery, Commanding Post.

* Omitted.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

FORT WARREN, BOSTON HARBOR, November 8, 1861.

Colonel DIMICK, U. S. Army.

SIR: On the 13th of September last I was arrested and taken to Fort McHenry and from thence to Fortress Monroe, thence to Fort Lafayette and finally I was brought here. For several years past I have suffered from a chronic affection of the bowels which increased on me whilst at Fort Lafayette to such an extent that I wrote from thence to Secretary Seward asking for my release, and I obtained the certificate of Doctors Macgill, Lynch, Thomas and Mills, fellow prisoners, as to my condition to which was added the certificate of the surgeon of that post.

In reply Secretary Seward offered me my release on condition that I would take an oath of allegiance and not to return to Maryland. The latter part of the condition I could not accept because my pecuniary means would not admit of it. I am a farmer of Baltimore County, Md., and was a member of the Legislature of the State but my time of service has expired. Will you do me the favor to write to Secretary Seward in my behalf.

I am, &c.,

L. G. QUINLAN.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

We certify that the facts above stated are true and that Mr. Quinlan’s life is in danger from his confinement.

CHAS. MACGILL, M. D. J. HANSON THOMAS, M. D. ANDREW A. LYNCH, M. D. B. MILLS, M. D.

{p.704}

–––

FORT WARREN, BOSTON HARBOR, November 10, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD.

SIR: After some reflection I came to the conclusion to address you a few hues. I am a prisoner at this fort and have been at this and Fort Lafayette for eight weeks. I was arrested as a member of the Maryland Legislature and have understood that those arrests were made as a precautionary measure to prevent what seemed anticipated, viz, the passage of a secession ordinance. Now I pledge my honor as a man that if there were any such measure contemplated I know nothing of it nor Would I have countenanced such a measure. And as I am now by virtue of the late election a private citizen and will do nothing against the Government I hope you will be kind enough to release me.

Yours, truly,

ANDREW KESSLER.

–––

WASHINGTON, November 12 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

SIR: All the Maryland political prisoners but Messrs. Heckart and Lynch, of the Legislature, were at the time of their arrest members of the house of delegates of the State and their term of service has expired. A call of the Legislature now by the Governor would only include the members of both branches who have just been elected and the senators whose term of service has not expired. Messrs. Heckart and Lynch are such senators. But being from districts which have given a large Union majority I think it probable if that was exacted that they would as Mr. McKaig did resign. The mayor of the city, Mr. Brown, and the three commissioners of police, Messrs. Howard, Gatchell and Davis, would probably also agree to resign or not to assume to exercise their Several functions.

As Maryland now stands (and such is the opinion of all the leading Union men of the State I have consulted and I have consulted many including the governor) I think whilst it would do no possible harm it would have a happy effect to discharge all the prisoners unconditionally except the mayor and commissioners of police. I except them only because their claims if made to their offices might lead to trouble. But if any special security is thought necessary a parole of honor substantially in the following terms would seem to me sufficiently to answer that object, viz:

I hereby give my parole of honor that I will in good faith support the Constitution of the United States and in no way assist the present rebellion against its authority or give aid or comfort to those who are or may be engaged in it.

With regard, your obedient servant,

REVERDY JOHNSON.

–––

EXECUTIVE CHAMBER, Annapolis, November 12, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

DEAR SIR: Having heard last evening whilst in Baltimore that you had an idea of releasing from their confinement at Fort Warren ,&c., such members of our former distinguished Legislature as have been {p.705} superseded by the election of successors I trust, sir, you will excuse me for obtruding a word of admonition upon the subject. I beg that you be particular.

To liberate such men as Landing, of Worcester; Maxwell, of Cecil; Claggett, of Frederick, &c., will do us little injury in Maryland; but to release Teackle Wallis, T. Parkin Scott, H. M. Warfield, &c., will be to give us as much trouble here as would the liberation of Mayor Brown, George P. Kane, the police commissioners of Baltimore, and other like spirits to them. We are going on right in Maryland and I beg that nothing be done to prevent what I have long desired and labored for, viz, the identification of Maryland with the Government proper. Everything is working well here and although I have felt that I have not been treated in some instances as I had a right to expect I intend to do my duty and aid to save the Union. I close by saying be careful-do not be over liberal with these fellows.

Your obedient servant, &c.,

THOS. H. HICKS.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, November 15, 1861.

His Excellency THOMAS H. HICKS, Governor of the State of Maryland.

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your excellency’s letter of the 12th instant and to thank you for the suggestions it contains and to assure you of the highest appreciation of the loyal and patriotic spirit which pervades them and influences all your excellency’s public conduct.

I have the honor to be, your excellency’s obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

–––

FORT WARREN, November 15, 1861.

Mr. SETH C. HAWLEY.

SIR: A notice signed by you appeared this afternoon upon the wall of the quarters in which we are confined. We quote it in full as follows, viz:

FORT WARREN, November 11, 1861.

The undersigned, appointed by the Secretary of State of the United States to examine into the cases of the political prisoners at Fort Warren, desires those prisoners to be prepared to-morrow to answer the question whether they would severally be willing to take the oath of allegiance to the Constitution and Government of the United States if they should be set at liberty, farther inquiry into each case to depend upon the answer. To-morrow there will be an opportunity to answer the question.

SETH C. HAWLEY.

We presume that we are among those whom you designate as “political prisoners,” and supposing that you may call on us to-morrow to answer the inquiry which you have indicated we desire to furnish our reply in our own language in order that we may not be misunderstood or misrepresented.

As we understand your notice “further inquiry into each case” is to depend upon the willingness of the individual to take the oath which you propose; that is to say that no man’s case will be inquired into unless he first signify his willingness to swear as required.

{p.706}

We have now been in confinement for more than two months. We were arrested without process or form of law upon the alleged authority of the Secretary of State of the United States who clearly has no lawful authority whatever in the premises. We have been dragged from one fortress of the Government to another by military force and have been dealt with in a manner which would have been indecent if we had been convicted felons instead of free men accused of no offense against the laws of our country.

We have been separated from our homes and families, exposed to constant suffering and privation to the injury of health, the prejudice of our interests and good name and in flagrant violation of every right which we have inherited as American citizens.

More than this as members of the Legislature of Maryland we have been unlawfully withdrawn from the performance of our official duties in derogation of the constitutional rights of our State and her people.

To tell us after all this that our case has not been even inquired into thus far and that it will not even now be made the subject of inquiry by the Government at whose hands we have suffered so much wrong unless we will first submit to conditions as unlawful and arbitrary as our arrest and imprisonment is to offer to each of us an insult which we should forfeit our self-respect if we did not repel.

If we are accused of having committed any offense known to the law we are entitled to be lawfully and publicly charged therewith and to be tried not by you or by the Secretary of State but by the constituted tribunals of the district from which we have been violently and illegally removed.

If we have been guilty of no crime against the law we are entitled to be discharged without any terms or conditions and the Secretary of State if you really represent him is only visiting us with an additional outrage by attempting to impose such upon us.

We are yours, &c.,

E. G. KILBOURN. S. TEACKLE WALLIS. T. PARKIN SCOTT. WM. G. HARRISON. HENRY M. WARFIELD. J. HANSON THOMAS.

–––

FORT WARREN, November 16, 1861.

I have twice taken the oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States during the present year and am not disposed to turn a solemn obligation into ridicule by constant repetitions of it.

I am not conscious of having in any way or manner violated that obligation. If I have or if the Government supposes I have I have a right as a citizen of the United States to demand an investigation.

I cannot by the acceptance of conditions for my release acknowledge by implication or inference that any just or legal cause existed for my arrest which I utterly deny.

I am willing to hold myself in readiness to meet any charges that may be brought against me.

LAWRENCE SANGSTON, Of Baltimore.

{p.707}

–––

POLICE DEPT., OFFICE OF THE PROVOST-MARSHAL, Baltimore, November 16, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX.

SIR: Having learned that efforts are being made to procure the release of the State prisoners from Maryland now at Fort Warren I cannot refrain from the expression of my opinion that such an act of leniency would probably be attended with disastrous results to the cause. My personal relations with many of these gentlemen would induce me to concur in the efforts of their friends but I feel impelled by superior considerations to express the opinion that such a measure would seriously retard the growing feeling of confidence in the Government now so unmistakably manifest among us.

Our friends are universally adverse to such an act of clemency at this juncture. We fear that the time has not yet come for this act of magnanimity on the part of Government and hope that if this measure has been seriously contemplated that it may be postponed until assurance is made doubly sure that this unnatural rebellion has ceased to exist.

With great respect, I am, your obedient servant,

GEO. R. DODGE, Provost-Marshal.

–––

FORT WARREN, November 19, 1861.

Mr. S. C. HAWLEY.

SIR: In reply to your inquiry I would state that I have not knowingly done anything against the laws and Constitution of the United States. I have no wish to do so hereafter. I am willing to take an oath that I will not during the present war take up arms against the United States nor aid in any way her enemies whether foreign or domestic. I do this in good faith without making or desiring to make any mental reservation. I reside in Maryland and have been a member of the Legislature from 1845 up to the present session one year excepted. As my whole interest is in Maryland I expect to stand by Maryland and the United States. I have always been opposed to secession knowing that it would put Maryland in a critical condition.

G. W. LANDING.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, Md., November 20, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary-of State.

SIR: I have carefully examined the list of prisoners sent from Fort McHenry to Forts Lafayette and Columbus and with the concurrence of Mr. Dodge, the provost-marshal, recommend that the following be discharged from arrest on taking the oath of allegiance: The Hon. John J. Heckart, of Cecil County, senator. Mr. Heckart is advanced in age, not a violent secessionist and in the session of June last separated from his political friends in a vote on the resolution recognizing the Southern Confederacy. He was in the negative.

Hon. Leonard G. Quinlan, Baltimore County, delegate. Mr. Quinlan is a moderate man in talents, influence, and political feeling.

Hon. William G. Harrison, city of Baltimore, delegate. Mr. Harrison has been a uniform but not a violent secessionist. His health is precarious and his release is recommended on this ground.

{p.708}

Hon. George W. Landing, Worcester County, delegate. Mr. Landing is a man of no importance; was not quite himself when arrested and may be safely allowed to go home.

Thomas Shields, George Thompson, A. Williamson, David H. Lucchesi, George A. Appleton, Michael J. Grady, John L. Bouldin, Robert Rae, Charles D. French, A. Robert Carter. These ten persons are of no importance; they were arrested for carrying on an illicit correspondence with the Confederate States or for having intended to go into their service.

Thomas B. Giles, Joseph Bacon, S. B. Frost. These three men were arrested on the charge of concealing a balloon belonging to the United States in Delaware. I think there was some doubt as to one of them and all have been sufficiently punished.

If you will direct a list of prisoners from Maryland to be sent to me when the above shall have been discharged I will examine it carefully with the provost-marshal and shall recommend some further releases. Some of the prisoners named above I believe are still in Fort Columbus.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

–––

PRINCESS ANNE, MD., November 22, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washington.

SIR: I have the honor to forward to you a memorial and letter of sundry influential citizens of Worcester County in this State asking for the release of George W. Landing, lately a member of the Legislature from that county and now a prisoner in Fort Warren. The memorialists are well known to me, and I take pleasure in saying that they are loyal and influential citizens and to them we are indebted in a great degree for success in the late election by which that county was rescued from the dominion of revolutionary sentiment and ranged under the banner of the Union.

I am also well acquainted with Mr. Landing. He has some means and is liberal to those around him and hence is popular in his neighborhood. He is uneducated, very ignorant and entirely incapable of conceiving or executing any scheme at all dangerous to the public peace if he were so inclined. But he has no strong passions or dangerous resentments and has no particular bias for or against the Government. He was elected two years ago as a Democrat and in the Legislature he followed his party associations. He voted with the majority but from my knowledge of him I am safe in saying he was not aware of the tendencies of his votes. He is not a dangerous man and the Government has dignified him overmuch by his arrest and confinement. I am not informed but I feel sure that he would not hesitate to give any reasonable pledge of his future good conduct the Government would exact.

I recommend his discharge; it is the wish of the friends of the Government where he resides and his official term has now expired. He can do no harm and his liberation will tend to strengthen the loyal good feeling now growing in that vicinity.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, yours, &c.,

J. W. CRISFIELD.

{p.709}

[Inclosure.]

His Excellency ABRAHAM LINCOLN, President of the United States:

We, the subscribers, Union citizens of Worcester and Somerset Counties, State of Maryland, having witnessed the good effect of the kindness and clemency of the Government in this section in subduing secession which now seems entirely overcome, recommend and pray to Your Honor to release our neighbor and friend, Mr. George W. Landing, one of the members of our late Legislature now confined by your authority in Boston, November, 1861.

N. WALLS BENNUM. [And 35 other citizens.]

–––

SNOW HILL, WORCESTER COUNTY, MD., November 24, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

MY DEAR SIR: I recommend that the release of George W. Landing, a political prisoner at Fort Warren, shall be granted upon his taking the oath prescribed by law. There is no just reason in my belief for his further detention and the sin of his offending is not a tithe in comparison to that of other members of the Legislature of the State who have been set at liberty by the Government, nor has his ability to do harm to the Government been half so great nor has there been on his part any attempt to foster the rebellion in my belief. The day before his arrest he gave me an assurance of his loyalty that induced me to write to the officer supposed to have the arresting process in hand to leave him unmolested if it was possible to do so.

I have the honor to be, &c.,

G. W. P. SMITH.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, November 25, 1861.

Hon. JOHN W. CRISFIELD, Princess Anne, Md.

SIR: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 22d instant and its inclosures. In reply I have to inform you that orders for the discharge of George W. Landing have been sent to the officer in command of Fort Warren.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

–––

413 BROOME STREET, NEW YORK, November 25, 1861.

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary of State.

DEAR SIR: A. Kessler, of Maryland.-A member of the Legislature (delegate); term expired and a successor elected. His county at late election voted largely Union. When in the Legislature voted against passing an ordinance of secession. Claims to be for the Union; will take the oath. Will do no harm if at large.

{p.710}

G. W. Lauding.-Late a member of the Maryland Legislature. His written statement is inclosed.* His case is like that of Mr. Kessler. I make no question that he will be in future a Union man.

Leonard G. Quinlan, of Baltimore.-Also a member of the Legislature. His case is like the two preceding. He voted against secession by legislative action. Will take the oath. Would do no harm at large.

W. E. Salmon, of Frederick County, Md.-Member of the Legislature. Will take the oath. Can see no reason why he should not be set at liberty.

John J. Heckart, Maryland.-Hold-over senator. I think he would do no harm at liberty but he has a maggot in his [head] about taking the oath because it would or might conflict with his official oath as senator. I do not see how. He refers with confidence to Mr. Secretary Cameron as an intimate acquaintance of long standing. If I had to do with him I should set him free on taking the oath.

A. A. Lynch, Maryland.-Also a hold-over senator. He has the same idea about the oath as Mr. Heckart. Shows a good legislative record. Mr. Reverdy Johnson, of Maryland, has his case in charge and I am disposed to leave it with [him].

The cases of all these gentlemen are better known to the State Department than they can be to me. I assume that the arrest was one of policy having in view the defeat of any possible hostile legislation at that time. That object having been secured perhaps there is no longer occasion to hold the parties provided their present frame of mind indicates no danger.

My recommendations toward mitigation of duress are always subject to the condition that there exists no proof of guilt in your Department and so in the case of these gentlemen.

This closes all the Maryland cases that seem to me to be safe to set at large on taking the oath.

I shall make a communication in relation to Mayor Brown to-morrow.

I am, very truly, yours,

S. C. HAWLEY.

NOVEMBER 26.

The within was written last evening. This morning I see by the papers that most of these men with others have been already discharged. I send it forward all the same. S. B. Frost who is in the published list as dismissed I think ought never to have been arrested. His arrest was probably the result of private malice; whereas W. G. Harrison also in that list is a malignant.

* Not found, but see Landing to Hawley, p. 707.

–––

FORT WARREN, BOSTON HARBOR, November 26, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.

SIR: I have the honor to inclose to you the oaths of allegiance administered this day by me to Leonard G. Quinlan, Sidney B. Frost, John L. Bouldin, D. H. Lucchesi, J. J. Heckart, Robert Rae, George Thompson G. W. Landing and C. D. French agreeably to your order of the 23d instant.

{p.711}

Thomas Shields, Michael J. Grady, George A. Appleton, William G. Harrison and A. Robert Carter refused to take the oath.

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

J. DIMICK, Colonel First Artillery and Brevet Colonel, Comdg. Post.

[Inclosure.]

I, G. W. Landing, do solemnly swear that I will support, protect and defend the Constitution and Government of the United States against all enemies whether domestic or foreign and that I will bear true faith, loyalty and allegiance to the same, any ordinance, resolution or law of any State convention or legislature to the contrary notwithstanding; and further that I do this with a full determination, pledge and purpose and without any mental reservation or evasion whatsoever; and further that I will well and faithfully perform all the duties which may be required of me by law hereby stipulating that I will neither enter into any of the States in insurrection against the Government of the United States nor hold any correspondence whatsoever with persons residing in those States nor transmit any correspondence between any disloyal persons without permission from the Secretary of State, and also that I will not do anything hostile to the United States during the present insurrection, so help me God.

G. W. LANDING.

Sworn and subscribed to before me on this the 26th day of November, 1861, at Fort Warren, Boston Harbor.

J. DIMICK, Colonel, U. S. Army, Commanding Post.

NOTE.-Leonard G. Quinlan, J. J. Heckart and others also subscribed to this oath on the same day.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, November 26, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore.

GENERAL: Herewith I have the honor to transmit a list* of Maryland prisoners which has been submitted to me by the Hon. Reverdy Johnson with a recommendation that the persons therein named be released on taking the oath and entering into the usual engagements required by this Department. Will you have the kindness to examine it and report to me your opinion in regard to the matter.

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

* See Johnson to Seward, November 12.

–––

BALTIMORE, November 26, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD:

Was Senator Heckart released on the condition that he should not resume his office?

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

{p.712}

–––

U. S. MARSHAL’S OFFICE, DISTRICT OF MASSACHUSETTS, Boston, November 27, 1861.

F. W. SEWARD, Esq., Assistant Secretary of State.

SIR: I received the orders for Colonel Dimick at Fort Warren to release the persons named therein yesterday and proceeded immediately to the fort to attend to their execution.

Five of these parties refused to take the oath and were retained in custody, namely, G. A. Appleton, A. Robert Carter, William G. Harrison, M. J. Grady and Thomas Shields.

The others all took the oath of allegiance and the stipulations required and were released. ...

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN S. KEYES, U. S. Marshal.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, November 27, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: The Hon. Reverdy Johnson’s list is not discriminating. I have submitted it to Mr. Dodge, the provost-marshal, and in close his letter. To his suggestions I beg leave to submit the following:

1. P. F. Rasin, from Kent County, was offered his release on condition that he would take the oath of allegiance and declined.

2. James W. Maxwell ought not to be released.

4. J. H. Gordon ought not to be released.

6. E. G. Kilbourn ought by no means to be released.

Dr. A. A. Lynch, senator, I think might be released on condition that he should resign his place in the senate and take the oath. The Union men have a majority of the senate; but it is now considered desirable to have three more. I did not know this when I wrote in regard to Senator Heckart or I would have suggested the same condition in his case but I think it can be arranged here.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

[Inclosure.]

BALTIMORE, November 27, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX.

SIR: I have carefully examined the list of political prisoners from Maryland now in confinement at Fort Warren and elsewhere and give below the exact position they occupy in the public estimation here where they are best known.

At the same time I cannot refrain from the expression of my official opinion that the release of such members of the Legislature as were prominent at the session held at Frederick would be hailed as a victory over the Government by the secessionists, and would seem to make good their oft-repeated assertion that these men were only put out of the way until after the election when they would be released as they had not committed any offense against the Government.

I would respectfully suggest that Mr. Heckart’s release should have been accompanied by the condition that he should resign his seat in the senate; so also should that of Doctor Lynch if it is contemplated. I {p.713} have taken some pains to obtain the opinions of our leading Union men and learn that they coincide in the belief that the time has not yet arrived to release these prisoners and that instead of relaxing the Government should be more stringent than ever. You have doubtless observed the animus that still impels the traitors among us. The persecution threatened to the committee who visited Washington recently in relation to obtaining employment for our working people; the defiance still apparent of certain ministers of the gospel in refusing to officiate on fast or Thanksgiving days when proclaimed by the President of the United States or governor of Maryland; the recent charge given to the grand jury of Talbot County by Judge Carmichael; the indictment (for treason against the State) against the Senator, Goldsborough, consequent upon that charge-are sufficient to show that the snake is only scotched and not killed, and I think show conclusively that leniency exhibited now by the Government might be attended with very serious results.

I would respectfully refer you to the journal of proceedings of the senate and house of delegates during the sessions held at Annapolis and Frederick, from which you will learn the degree of turpitude by which the members were actuated.

I am, with great respect, your obedient servant,

GEO. R. DODGE, Provost-Marshal.

[Sub-inclosure.]

1. P. F. Rasin, house of delegates; voted treasonably; not otherwise objectionable.

2. Jas. W. Maxwell, house of delegates; voted treasonably; spoke inimically to the Government; think him a dangerous man; always misrepresented his constituents on this question.

3. Clarke J. Durant, house of delegates; voted treasonably; of but little influence.

4. J. H. Gordon, house of delegates; voted treasonably; a dangerous man.

5. R. M. Denison, house of delegates; voted treasonably; not otherwise objectionable.

6. E. G. Kilbourn, house of delegates; was speaker and exercised much influence; was very violent; is a Northern man by birth; we think him a dangerous man and should be retained.

7. A. Kessler, house of delegates; voted wrong; do not think him very obnoxious.

8. Thos. J. Claggett, house of delegates; voted wrong; not otherwise obnoxious; has but little influence.

9. Win. E. Salmon, house of delegates; in same position as Claggett.

10. B. Mills, house of delegates; in same position as Claggett.

11. J. L. Jones, house of delegates; same position as Claggett.

12. Lawrence Sangston, house of delegates; voted wrong but has but little influence; an old hunker politician; it is his trade; has belonged to any party that would pay him for a number of years past.

...

15. J. M. Brewer we have no knowledge of.

...

19. Win. R. Miller we have no knowledge of.

{p.714}

–––

FORT WARREN, November 28, 1861.

[Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD.]

DEAR SIR: I am the only member of the Maryland Legislature now in Fort Warren. The Legislature meets on the 3d of December next. All my fellow-members are at liberty to attend and why I alone should be confined appears strange to me. I have never violated the Constitution nor have I by any legislative acts or otherwise attempted to sever the bonds of the Union but to the contrary have done all in my power to maintain both.

I should have written to you long since but was induced to believe the true merits of my case had been presented to you by my old friend Reverdy Johnson who is intimately acquainted with my legislative antecedents. I regard my arrest and imprisonment the result of gross misrepresentation. Upon investigation should you find my loyalty fully indorsed by nearly three months’ imprisonment I think sufficient without demanding of me an oath not required of my fellow senators who have neither been arrested nor imprisoned. I trust when giving my case a full and final investigation you will at least make no demands not required of others more guilty than myself.

My objection to taking the oath I trust will not be regarded as a want of loyalty. I have been imprisoned without a cause and I think have a right to expect an unconditional discharge.

All of which I most respectfully submit.

Yours, truly,

A. A. LYNCH.

P. S.-Should the above conditions not meet your views I would respectfully suggest my release on parole. I shall leave it with you to dictate the terms. All I ask is an honorable discharge which I think my true legislative course when indorsed by you will demand.

A. A. L.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, November 29, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore.

GENERAL: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 27th instant together with its inclosure from George R. Dodge, provost-marshal of Baltimore, in reference to Maryland prisoners.

I have the honor to be, sir, your obedient servant,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

–––

BALTIMORE, November 30, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: As the physician of S. Teackle Wallis, esq., now a prisoner in Fort Lafayette, N. Y., I respectfully urge upon you the condition of his health as requiring his release at your hands.

A thorough acquaintance with the physical status of my patient justifies me in expressing my conviction that his feeble constitution cannot withstand the undermining influences of incarceration. Indeed I have {p.715} every reason to believe that his health is already much impaired by the confinement he has already undergone and in stating that in my judgment a protracted imprisonment must be productive of the worst irretrievable consequences to him.

For myself I beg to refer to Dr. Benjamin King, U. S. Army, War Department, Washington.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

CHRISTOPHER JOHNSTON, M. D.

–––

DECEMBER 2, 1861.

To the PRESIDENT.

SIR: I have been requested by Simeon Draper, esq., of New York, to lay before you the accompanying papers. I accordingly send them to you.

Very respectfully,

CALEB B. SMITH.

[Inclosure.]

BALTIMORE, November 25, 1861.

Hon. SIMEON DRAPER, Eutaw House.

DEAR SIR: In a conversation with you on 23d instant relating to the State prisoners from Baltimore now confined at Fort Warren you seemed to think the Government might with great propriety release such as were not charged with any specific or grave offense and you kindly offered to use your influence with the President in this behalf.

I stated to you that I knew all these State prisoners and some of them very intimately. I particularly desire to have my intimate and close friend, Dr. J. Hanson Thomas, released for reasons in which his domestic interests are involved as well as the interests of the bank over which he has for many years presided. I am quite sure that the release of these gentlemen would give great satisfaction to our community and could not be objected to by any part of it.

The friends of these gentlemen have learned that the Government had fully intended to release such of them as were not charged with any specific offense. The proof of this is a letter from Postmaster-General Blair to a friend here dated the 12th instant advising that from a conversation with the President a day or two before he had no doubt he (the President) would immediately release the Baltimore prisoners.

As they have not been released their families and friends have concluded that this determination has been changed by certain language used in an address to the President on the 13th instant from a self-constituted committee of our citizens who went to Washington for the meritorious purpose of asking employment for our mechanics and laboring classes.

In that address they very unnecessarily refer to the removal of certain “incendiary politicians” from our midst as a cause of gratitude to the President. They do not say who these incendiaries are but the effect of the language has probably reached even those whom the President had determined to release.

I called upon Mr. Enoch Pratt, the chairman of this committee, for an explanation of this language. He assured me it had no reference to Doctor Thomas or to other of his friends; that he did not know such language was in the address when he signed it; if he had he would not have appended his name to it; and he was amazed to see it in print.

{p.716}

He also offered to sign any paper addressed to the President soliciting the release of Doctor Thomas and friends. This statement of Mr. Pratt’s views and feelings I of course vouch for.

Mr. William McKim, another signer of the address, was written to by the brother of Mr. Charles Howard. Copies of the correspondence are inclosed* herewith and should satisfy any mind that no influence prejudicial to the liberty of these gentlemen was intended to be exercised by him. I am told that other signers have said they regretted the effect of that part of the address and that no part of it was intended for publication.

Whether this is the real cause of their continued imprisonment is known only to the President and his counsellors; but if it is I feel sure that at least the greater portion of the signers of that address would disavow its application to the gentlemen in question as has already been done by their chairman and by Mr. McKim.

I feel that these comments upon this address are necessary to explain to you the unexpected postponement of the release of the gentlemen from Baltimore, and to further enlist the sympathy you have so kindly manifested in their behalf.

With the hope that we may all meet at no distant day as friends and brothers and that our present unhappy strife may be speedily ended,

I am, yours, &c.,

SAM. K. GEORGE.

* Not found.

–––

BALTIMORE, December 7, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

DEAR SIR: It has been represented to us by reliable loyal citizens residing in the city of Annapolis and in Saint Mary’s County that Mr. Clarke J. Durant, of Saint Mary’s County, Md., late of the Legislature of this State and now confined in Fort Warren, has never been guilty of any disloyal acts and is now willing to take the oath of allegiance or any condition that may be imposed on him by the Government; and understanding that the Government has granted the release of several parties similarly situated we would respectfully solicit your intervention in behalf of Mr. Clarke J. Durant.

Very respectfully, your obedient servants,

THOMAS H. GARDNER, THOMAS SEWELL, JR.

I am well acquainted with the gentlemen who certify the above. They are loyal and reliable men and any statement they make is entitled to confidence.

Very respectfully, &c.

HENRY W. HOFFMAN, Collector.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, December 7, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I sent a few days ago by mail the journals and documents of the senate and house of delegates of Maryland and the laws passed at a special session of the Legislature of 1861 but I accidently omitted to advise you of their transmission.

{p.717}

I had the honor to receive yesterday your letter of the 5th instant* inclosing copies of two letters, one from John S. Keyes, esq., U. S. marshal for the district of Massachusetts, relative to Messrs. Lynch and Macgill and the other from Doctor Lynch himself.

I cannot advise the release of Doctor Lynch unless he will resign his seat in the senate. Although he says in his letter that he has done all in his power to maintain the Constitution and the Union if you will turn to page 131 et seq. of the senate journal above referred to you will find he gave votes which were anything but favorable to the preservation of the Union. If he would consent to resign his seat in the senate I think he might be released on parole; but as a general rule it is not in my judgment advisable to release any man who refuses to take the oath of allegiance. Our citizens must be for the Union or against it. If they are not for it they are in favor of overturning the Government which is the representative of the Union; if they refuse to give a pledge of fidelity to it they can be regarded in no other light than that of secret enemies, and if they are in custody on charges of disloyalty it seems to me that they should be required to purge themselves by taking the oath of allegiance.

Doctor Macgill is not and has not been latterly at least a State senator. I inquired into his case when he was sent here from one of the northwestern counties of Maryland. I think he should be released if he will take the oath of allegiance. The U. S. marshal of Massachusetts is under a misapprehension in regard to him.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

* Not found.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, December 12, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: The governor-elect, Hon. A. W. Bradford, called on me this morning to ask my interposition with you for the release of Charles H. Pitts, late a member of the house of delegates from this city, either permanently or temporarily. Under all the circumstances of his case and the condition of his young and helpless family I recommend that he be released on his parole for thirty days to enable him to visit this city.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

–––

FRIENDLY HALL, December 12, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

DEAR SIR: Mrs. M. C. Durant, wife of Clarke J. Durant, esq., of Saint Mary’s County, Md., has addressed a letter to me soliciting my kind offices in behalf of her husband. She assures me her husband has done no act of disloyalty to the Government; that he was at home attending upon her in her illness at the time the Wallis resolutions were before the Legislature. I am also credibly informed that his affairs are much deranged by his absence and that his wife’s health is still very delicate. It is under these circumstances I have taken the liberty to address you.

{p.718}

Whilst my sympathies are ever alive to the sufferings of my fellow beings particularly unprotected females, and in this case one who is a descendant of a revolutionary soldier long an intimate and personal friend, I could in no wise permit my sympathies in the slightest degree to induce me to do anything that might militate against the integrity and welfare of my country. Should there be no evidence that he has been guilty of treasonable acts against the Government or giving aid and comfort to the enemy within your knowledge of which I am ignorant might I not be excused for recommending his release upon such terms as your superior wisdom may suggest?

Most respectfully,

WM. J. BLAKISTONE.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, December 16, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore.

GENERAL: Herewith I have the honor to inclose some statements relative to the cases of John M. Brewer and Andrew Kessler. Their release is recommended by the Hon. Francis Thomas. Will you have the kindness to read them and return the inclosure with your opinion thereon to this Department.

I am, &c.,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

[Inclosure.]

LEGISLATURE OF MARYLAND, HOUSE OF DELEGATES, Annapolis, December 10, 1861.

Hon. FRANCIS THOMAS, Washington.

MY DEAR SIR: I have received your note. I do not desire that any special exertion shall be made on behalf of Mr. B. nor anyone else. As the Government has seen fit to apprehend him and others it is to be presumed they had good cause for it, and ignorant of the grounds of the arrests it would be hazardous on our part to offer advice or make any instances in relation thereto. All that we can do is to suggest the insignificance of Mr. B. in his political relations and our impression that if the Government would examine into his case they would in all likelihood set him at large. The only motive for your or our interposition is to be found in the fact that the poor fellow has no friend to take up his cause and he is therefore in danger of being overlooked.

Our police bill is under consideration and I think we shall in a few days act satisfactorily on the subject.

Yours, respectfully,

TH. S. ALEXANDER.

–––

FORT WARREN, December 16, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: By the memorial addressed by me to the president of the senate of Maryland which was forwarded to you* and by you transmitted {p.719} to the governor of Maryland by whom it was laid before the body for whose consideration it was intended you fully understand my position. That memorial was entered upon the journal of the senate and referred to the committee on federal relations of that body. A report will doubtless soon be made upon it by that committee when my case will come up for the consideration of the senate. It is a case which involves my rights as a member of the senate and as a citizen of the State of Maryland, and concerns my character both as a public man and a private individual. I claim as a right and as but a measure of common justice to be personally present and to be heard by my peers when matters of such vast moment to me in all the relations to which I have adverted shall come up for their action.

I therefore request that you will grant me a parole by which I may take my seat as a senator of Maryland and have an opportunity to vindicate myself before a body certainly not partial to me and yet before which I will fearlessly appear and submit my public conduct and political action to the severest scrutiny which even my opponents can institute confident that I shall come out of the ordeal freed from all suspicion of the slightest act inconsistent with the character of a good citizen and an honest man.

I would add as a further reason for my being discharged upon parole the necessities of my private business which have been deemed by you in the cases of several of my late fellow-prisoners from the State of Maryland good cause for their discharge upon parole. In my own case a necessity the most urgent is presented in the fact that my attorney Benjamin M. Heighe, late of the city of Baltimore, who had charge of my business in the leasing of a large number of buildings and the collection of the rents as well as in making my collections generally has died within a few weeks past and since my imprisonment and there is no one competent or authorized to take charge of the matters which were in his hands.

I am, respectfully, yours, &c.,

ANDREW A. LYNCH.

* Not found; but see Lynch’s letter of January 1, 1862, to the president of the Maryland senate, p. 725.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, December 17, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to return the papers in the case of Andrew Kessler, a member of the Maryland Legislature now confined in Fort Warren. He was never in custody at Fort McHenry and was not on the list of prisoners here; but I am acquainted with all the circumstances relating to his arrest and recommend his release on taking the oath of allegiance. He voted against the resolution to recognize the Confederate States.

In my letter to you of the 14th instant* I recommended that John M. Brewer be released on his parole for thirty days.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

* Not found.

{p.720}

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, December 17, 1861.

Col. JUSTIN DIMICK, Port Warren, Boston, Mass.

COLONEL: You may release John M. Brewer, a Maryland prisoner, on his stipulation upon oath that he will not enter any of the States in insurrection against the authority of the Government of the United States; that he will not hold any correspondence himself nor be engaged in any with persons residing in those States; that he will not hold any treasonable correspondence or be engaged in any with any persons whomsoever; that he will not do any act or thing hostile or injurious to the Government of the United States, and that at the expiration of the period of thirty days* from the date of his release he will voluntarily return to Fort Warren and deliver himself into your custody unless otherwise directed by the Secretary of State.

I am, &c.,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

* On the recommendation of General Dix, this period was extended to sixty days.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, December 18, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore.

GENERAL: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 17th instant relative to Andrew Kessler and John M. Brewer. In reply I have to inform you that the former will be released on taking the oath; and that an order to release the latter on parole for thirty days was issued immediately upon the receipt of your report of the 14th instant.

I have the honor, &c.,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, December 21, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to inclose a letter from Hon. Francis Thomas recommending the release of Hon. Thomas J. Claggett and William E. Salmon, late members of the house of delegates. Both are willing to take the oath of allegiance and I concur in recommending their release.

I am, very respectfully, yours,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

[Inclosure.]

WASHINGTON, December 20, 1861.

Maj. Gen. J. A. DIX.

SIR: From our conversation I learned that you have omitted to refer to the cases of Thomas J. Claggett and William E. Salmon in your letter to the Secretary of State respecting the release of Messrs. Kessler {p.721} and Brewer. Please have the kindness to consider the claims of those two prisoners and indicate a course with respect to them which in your judgment the Government ought to pursue.

I submit respectfully a letter from Mr. Salmon addressed to myself. Mr. Claggett has not himself written but his loyal friends-and he has many in my district-have urged me to interfere in his behalf.

You are aware that neither Mr. Claggett nor Mr. Salmon is now a member of the house of delegates of Maryland. Their time of service expired on the 6th of November when their successors were elected. They hold no official station and being without political influence I must believe that no public interest will be put in hazard-by their release.

Mr. Claggett I am well advised declined to go to Frederick to meet the Legislature on the day fixed for it to assemble and was arrested at his home, and from the letter of Mr. Salmon inclosed you will see that he is not disposed to give further trouble.

Very respectfully,

FRANCIS THOMAS.

[Sub-inclosure.]

FORT WARREN, Boston, December 17, 1861.

Hon. F. THOMAS:

Permit me to call your attention to the fact that I am a prisoner at this fort and have been for three months with Mr. Kessler and Claggett, of Frederick County. The charge against [us] I believe is we were members of the late Legislature of Maryland. I am very anxious to return to my home on the same conditions as Dennis, Doctor McCubbin, Landing, Quinlan and Heckart. Those gentlemen subscribed to the oath of allegiance and are now home. The last-named gentleman has taken his seat in the senate of Maryland. I am willing to take the oath as the others above have done. I ask it as a favor that you call on Mr. Seward and request my release and oblige an old friend.

Respectfully, yours,

WM. E. SALMON.

P. S.-Mr. Kessler will also take the oath as required by the Government.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, December 23, 1861.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore, Md.

GENERAL: Your letter of the 21st instant with its inclosures has been received.

Directions have been sent to Colonel Dimick to release Thomas J. Claggett and William E. Salmon, now confined at Fort Warren, upon their taking the oath of allegiance and making the usual stipulations.

I am, &c.,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

{p.722}

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, December 23, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 19th instant* inclosing a letter from Hon. Andrew A. Lynch, a member of the senate of this State, and asking my opinion thereon.

Mr. Lynch requests that he may be released on parole in order that he may take his seat and be heard by his peers when his case shall come before them for their action. It is to be presumed if the senate of Maryland takes up his case and decides to inquire into his past conduct excepting so far as it is shown by its own journals that he will be allowed an opportunity of vindicating himself from any accusations which may be brought against him. But until a wish is expressed by the senate that he shall be allowed to take his seat I do not think the Government is called on to release him for the purpose. The recent election shows that during the June session of the Maryland Legislature his disloyal course was in direct opposition to the wishes and opinions of his constituents and they cannot be supposed to desire his restoration to his place. To his conduct and that of his associates in the Legislature more than to any other cause are no doubt due the repeated demonstrations of the Confederates against the State of Maryland and the aid their army has received from this quarter.

Under these circumstances I think Mr. Lynch has no claim to the clemency of the Government; at the same time if he will resign his seat in the senate and allow his constituents an opportunity of filling his place by one who will not misrepresent them I would advise his release on the further condition that he take the oath of allegiance; or I would even suggest his release on parole if he will resign, though I would not advise a discharge from arrest without taking the oath of allegiance in other cases.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

P. S.-Mr. Lynch’s letter is herewith returned.

* Not found; but see Lynch’s letter of December 16, p. 718.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, December 24, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: The friends of Hon. Lawrence Sangston, late a member of the house of delegates of this State, are very desirous that he should be permitted to return home for thirty days on parole. His wife is in very bad health and has six helpless daughters. I recommend that the permission be granted.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

{p.723}

–––

FARMERS AND MERCHANTS BANK, Baltimore, December 24, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: At the suggestion and request of the directors of this bank I respectfully solicit the temporary release on his parole of Dr. John Hanson Thomas, the president of this bank, now confined in Fort Warren as a prisoner of state. His absence has caused some inconvenience in the administration of the business of the bank and his absence at this particular time (near the beginning of another year) is especially inconvenient. The directors would be glad to see him discharged unconditionally but as agents for the bank they limit their application as above for a period sufficiently long (at least thirty days) to enable him to examine its affairs and assist in the preparation of the annual statements so that they may be authenticated as required by law.

Hoping that this request may meet a favorable response,

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JAMES MOTT, Cashier.

[First indorsement.]

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, December 27, 1861.

Respectfully referred to Major-General Dix by the Secretary of State for opinion as to the propriety of granting the request. This letter to be returned with report thereon.

E. D. WEBSTER, Clerk.

[Second indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, January 1, 1862.

I respectfully recommend that Dr. Thomas be released on parole for thirty days. Remit the application to me.

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, December 26, 1861.

Col. JUSTIN DIMICK, Port Warren.

SIR: Lawrence Sangston may be allowed to visit his family in Baltimore and to be absent thirty days on giving his parole that he will return to Fort Warren at the end of that time and will do no act hostile to the United States.

I am, &c.,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

–––

FORT WARREN, December 28, 1861.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD.

SIR: I am a prisoner in Fort Warren. I have been arrested at the arbitrary will of the Government at Washington acting more particularly through the Department thereof over which you preside.

{p.724}

In my arrest none of the forms of law heretofore existing in Maryland of which State I am a citizen have been complied with; the arrest, however, was none the less potent and my imprisonment is none the less secure.

Under the government and laws which existed in Maryland up to the time at which I was arrested my arrest would have been a high crime for which the parties perpetrating the same would have been punished by the courts and from them I should have recovered damages for the injuries I have sustained, or rather no power up to that time would have dared to make such an arrest. I have been carried outside the jurisdiction of my own State, there imprisoned and denied any of what were considered legal modes of release and redress but am directed to apply for release to the Secretary of State of the United States. It is plain then so far as Maryland is concerned there has been a revolution in government; that the power of her courts and the protection which they afforded to her citizens has been usurped by the Government at Washington, and we are taught that the Department thereof which you are the head determines who shall be arrested in Maryland, how arrested, where imprisoned and when released. I am free to admit that such revolution has been accomplished in Maryland and am satisfied that no resistance can be made to it even by those disposed so to do, but that a government de facto is now established in Maryland as firmly as ever existed in that or any other State, that it has been acquiesced in by a vote of the people of the State (whether such vote was influenced by a show of military force or not does not matter), and that the citizens of Maryland must submit to a government against which they either have not the will or the power to resist, as it is evident that such government does sustain itself in Maryland and no doubt has full confidence in its power so to do.

It is further evident that the arrests made in Maryland was one of the means thought necessary by the United States to bring about the condition of things now existing in that State; that if any such necessity did exist that no such necessity now continues, and that humanity as well as expediency requires that they should be discontinued and that those in custody be released.

For my own part I am free to say that acquiescence in the existing government in Maryland is a matter of compulsion not of choice, but not the less positive on that account; that any further indignity which I may be obliged to suffer is unnecessary and any oath or obligation which may be attempted to be imposed on me will not influence or effect my allegiance to the Government now in power to which I submit and, therefore can be conducive to no good.

As you have directed our cases to be placed before you-as you have the power-and have assumed the responsibility of determining them I think it better to make this statement that you may understand my views and see that there is nothing to be gained by my further imprisonment, but on the contrary that whilst the detention of the Maryland prisoners can no longer effect any good under the system which you have thought proper to inaugurate their release will disarm your political enemies from legislative interference and those appeals to the public which they will have the power to make whilst these arrests and imprisonments continue.

Your obedient servant,

ROB. M. DENISON, Baltimore County, Md.

{p.725}

–––

FORT WARREN, BOSTON HARBOR, January 1, 1862.

The PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE OF MARYLAND.

SIR: On the 3d of December, 1861, I addressed you a communication to be laid before the senate in regard to the cause of my absence from my seat. I perceive by the newspapers that my letter was transmitted to the State Department of the United States, and having been forwarded to you by Mr. Seward was presented to the senate and referred to the committee on federal relations. I regretted and was surprised to learn from the same sources that the senate had adjourned to its regular session without having acted upon the matter, and indeed without having received any report from the committee.

I deem it now proper to inform the senate that on the day on which the communication last mentioned was mailed by me and after it had been forwarded I was presented by Colonel Dimick, the commandant of this post, with a letter from Mr. Seward instructing him to release me upon my taking what is called “the oath of allegiance” and resigning my seat as a member of the senate of Maryland. I inclose herewith a copy of the Secretary’s order* for the information of the honorable body over which you preside. It is hardly necessary to say that I at once declined to accept my release upon the terms prescribed. I refused to take the oath of allegiance for many reasons of which it is sufficient to mention the obvious one-that neither the Secretary of State nor any other officer of the Government is authorized to prescribe it to me, and least of all as the condition of my release from an imprisonment in which I am unlawfully and forcibly held in violation of the laws and Constitution of the United States. I refused to consider the proposition to resign my seat as a member of the senate of Maryland because the Secretary of State can have no constitutional, lawful or proper concern of any sort with the composition of that honorable body, or the selection or removal of its members or their conduct as such; and I felt it due not only to myself but to my official position to resist any such interference upon his part through me with the constitutional independence of the State of Maryland and the rights and dignity of its Legislature and people. It is for the senate to determine for itself what notice such action on the part of the Executive Government of the United States may require at its hands.

On the 16th of December, 1861, I addressed to the Secretary of State a communication of which a copy is likewise furnished herewith** in which I asked to be released under temporary parole for the purpose of appearing before the senate or its committee in any investigation which might be had in my case, and for the further purpose of attending to my private affairs which are suffering greatly from my absence. I have received no answer whatever to my letter. I leave it to my fellow senators, many of whom entertain and have officially expressed the same opinions of public policy which have caused my unlawful seizure and confinement, to take such steps in view of the foregoing facts as they may deem due to themselves, the honorable body which they compose and the rights of citizens of Maryland.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

ANDREW A. LYNCH.

* Not found.

** Omitted here. See Lynch to Seward, p 718.

{p.726}

–––

PHILADELPHIA, January 8, 1862.

His Excellency ABRAHAM LINCOLN, President of the United States.

SIR: I take the liberty of addressing you on behalf of and perhaps to save the life of one of my oldest and dearest friends.

Among the persons imprisoned at Fort Warren is S. Teackle Wallis, of Baltimore. He was a member of the Maryland Legislature opposed to your administration. I have known him intimately for nearly thirty years. He is a man of the highest personal honor who would rather die than say what was not exactly true. It is reported that he is arrested on suspicion of having prepared or been accessory to the preparation of an ordinance of secession for Maryland.

I have seen under Mr. Wallis’ own hand the statement that neither of these charges have the slightest foundation in truth. His opposition to your administration was open and manly. I have also his assurance in a letter to me of August 12, 1861, that he never would be engaged in any treasonable attempt to subvert the Government. This is his language:

I am as I have said the advocate of no policy of violence or revolution on the part of Maryland. She must submit to a fate she cannot mold and must practice the most difficult of virtues-endurance and forbearance. Such I am happy to say is the policy of all our leading men and I am gratified at having had much to do with shaping it.

The length of time which has elapsed since he was imprisoned has afforded ample opportunity to investigate his case. He is a man of the feeblest constitution having scarcely known a well moment for the last twenty years. He is so delicate that he will probably die if kept this winter in confinement.

I trust, sir, you will see fit to investigate this case on the score of humanity. I have not the honor of being known to you, but Reverdy Johnson and other distinguished men of Maryland know Mr. Wallis even better than I do and you will find on inquiry that I have exaggerated nothing in this statement.

I have the honor to be, with great respect, your obedient servant,

WM. H. DRAYTON.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, January 9, 1862.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore, Md.

GENERAL: You are authorized to exercise your discretion in regard to the extension of the parole of Charles H. Pitts and Dr. J. Hanson Thomas, granting or withholding it with such conditions or limitations as your may deem proper.

I am, &c.,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

–––

NEW YORK, January 9, 1862.

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary of State.

SIR: Among the political prisoners in Fort Warren I found A. A. Lynch, from Maryland. I have seen no notice of his having been discharged. {p.727} If he is yet in restraint I beg leave to suggest in his ease that I found no greater evidence of disloyalty in his case than in the other prisoners from Maryland who have been set at liberty. He was a senator and the record showed that he opposed direct secession. I thought him to be as friendly to the Union as any of the members of the Legislature but the circumstance that he was a hold-over senator and entitled to a seat in the Legislature at the then next session induced me to think it safe for him to remain in Fort Warren until after the session should be over as I could not tell how the parties would stand in that body.

I think now that it would be safe to let him out (if he has not already been released) on the usual terms. I have not asked you for papers in his case and my conclusion should pass for nothing if you have any proofs against him on file in your Department showing that he ought to be held.

Yours, respectfully,

S. C. HAWLEY.

–––

HEADQUARTERS DIVISION, Baltimore, Md., January 11, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to return the letters of Mr. Tracy.* I do not think Mr. T. Parkin Scott should be released even if he should agree to take the oath of allegiance. His presence here would be very distasteful to the friends of the Union whose feelings should be respected, and I regard him as one of the few persons in custody who should be under restraint until the insurrection is suppressed or until the Confederate army in front of the Potomac is dispersed. The inclosed letter** from him to the board of police written on the 2d of May, 1861, will show you how deeply he was implicated in the treasonable movements in Maryland at that day.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

* Not found.

** See p. 675 for letter of Scott to Police board.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Fort Warren, Boston Harbor, January 14, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washington, D. O.

SIR: I have the honor to report that J. Hanson Thomas declines the parole offered to him by yours of the 3d instant.

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

J. DIMICK, Colonel First Artillery and Brevet Colonel, Commanding Past.

{p.728}

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, January 16, 1862.

Col. JUSTIN DIMICK, Fort Warren.

COLONEL: Your letter of the 14th instant reporting that Mr. J. Hanson Thomas declines the parole tendered him has been duly received. In reply I have to request that you will hold him in custody till further instructions are received from this Department.

I am, &c.,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

–––

413 BROOME STREET, NEW YORK, January 16, 1862.

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary of State.

SIR: When I visited Fort Warren in November certain prisoners chose to reply in writing to the question whether they were willing to take the prescribed oath in the event of being offered a discharge. Among them were ten prisoners from Maryland who in effect declined. I do not know whether any or all of them are still detained, but I send you their replies* as proper to be placed on file in their respective cases. They will exhibit clearly the animus of the parties at that date.

They were all undoubtedly disloyal men under thin disguises and wanted only opportunity to do harm. The time will come if it has not already when they could be discharged with prudence. Of that you can judge far better than I, having means that I have not for observing the state of political opinion in Maryland. I should say, however, on general view that when the rebel army shall have been driven out of Virginia that a general jail delivery of the ten gentlemen whose answers are inclosed would be prudent.

I will add that I do not personally know that there is a good reason for detaining them so long.

Yours, respectfully,

S. C. HAWLEY.

* Not found, but see p. 705.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, January 17, 1862.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore, Md.

GENERAL: Application has been made for the unconditional release 2 Robert M. Denison. Will you have the kindness to read the inclosed statement** and report to this Department whether in your judgment there is any well-founded reason why the application should not be granted. Please return this inclosure.

I have the honor to be, &c.,

W. H. SEWARD.

** See Denison to Seward, p. 723.

{p.729}

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, January 17, 1862.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore.

GENERAL: Herewith I have the honor to inclose for your examination a communication from the committee on federal relations in the senate of Maryland relative to the case of Mr. Andrew A. Lynch, of Baltimore.

Will you please read it and inform me whether in your judgment it is expedient to discharge Mr. Lynch on his taking the oath of allegiance and entering into the usual engagements required by the Government. Please return these inclosures therewith.

I have the honor, &c.,

W. H. SEWARD.

[Inclosure.]

ANNAPOLIS, MD., January 15, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: The undersigned are the Union members composing a majority of the committee of the senate of Maryland on federal relations to which committee has been referred among other things the memorial* of Dr. A. A. Lynch, senator from Baltimore County, now in confinement at Fort Warren.

The memorial came to us from the State Department through the hands of Governor Hicks and we presume has been examined by you; we have thought it best, however, in communicating with you upon the subject to inclose a copy of it in printed form.

Being ourselves in entire ignorance of the nature of the charges against Doctor Lynch we have deemed it proper to request that you will inform us (if in your judgment it is not incompatible with public interest for you to do so) whether Doctor Lynch has been offered his release upon taking the oath of allegiance and has refused the condition.

If such an offer has not been made to him we should be glad to learn whether the Government would be willing to release him upon the terms indicated, or whether there are other reasons the nature of which if they exist we of course do not feel at liberty to inquire into which would preclude his discharge from confinement.

With high respect, your obedient servant,

CHARLES F. GOLDSBOROUGH Chairman. JNO. E. SMITH, LEWIS S. FIREY.

[For memorial of Andrew A. Lynch, see journal of proceedings of the senate of Maryland dated December 9, 1861, pp. 15 to 17 inclusive.]

* Not found. For Lynch to President Maryland senate, see p. 725; Lynch to Seward, see p. 718.

–––

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, Washington City, January 17, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I inclose a letter from Mr. Bond asking the release of E. G. Kilbourn, esq., for thirty days.

Please inform me of your determination in the matter and much oblige, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

CHAS. B. CALVERT.

{p.730}

[Inclosure.]

BALTIMORE, January 16, 1862.

Hon. CHARLES B. CALVERT.

DEAR SIR: I take the liberty of addressing you in behalf of E. G. Kilbourn, esq., confined since early in September last if I am not mistaken as a political prisoner and now at Fort Warren, Boston Harbor. He was a member of the late house of delegates of Maryland. His wife, a very interesting woman, is very sick, indeed I may say she is ill and may never see her husband again unless he is shortly released. His business affairs are going to the dogs and as far as I can see or imagine there can be no reason for keeping him longer. Will you do me as well as Mrs. K. the favor to ask for his release at least for thirty days he giving his parole to return at the expiration of that time? This would be an act of real humanity and I hope you will see Mr. Seward and obtain an order for his release as above.

I am, &c., very truly and respectfully, yours, &c.,

WM. B. BOND.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, January 18, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 17th instant relating to Robert M. Denison, a prisoner at Fort Warren, and recommend that he be released on his parole for thirty days.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, January 18, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 17th instant relating to the case of Doctor Lynch, now confined at Fort Warren, and recommend that under existing circumstances Doctor Lynch be released upon taking the oath of allegiance without being required to resign his seat in the senate.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, January 18, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 17th instant* with inclosures relating to the case of C. J. Durant, now confined at Fort Warren. On the 14th of December last I recommended to you that Mr. Durant be released on taking the oath of allegiance and that recommendation I now renew. The inclosures are herewith returned.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

* Not found.

{p.731}

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, January 20, 1862.

Hon. MONTGOMERY BLAIR, Postmaster-General.

SIR: Referring to your letter of the 18th instant* relative to Dr. Charles Macgill and C. J. Durant I have the honor to inform you that the report of Major-General Dix in reference thereto has been received. General Dix does not recommend any modification of the terms upon which their discharge was heretofore tendered them, viz, taking the oath of allegiance.

I have the honor to be, &c.,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

* Not found.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, January 22, 1862.

Maj. Gen. JOHN A. DIX, Baltimore.

GENERAL: Will you have the goodness to inform this Department whether in your judgment there is any well-founded reason for continuing to hold Philip F. Rasin and Robert W. Rasin in confinement, and upon what terms if any you would recommend their discharge.

I have the honor to be, &c.,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

–––

WASHINGTON, January 22, 1862.

[F. W. SEWARD.]

DEAR SIR: I have yours of the 20th relative to Durant and Macgill. You will see by reference to my first letter that I did not propose that they should be released without taking the oath of allegiance and if I had thought the form in which they proposed to take it differed in substance from that prescribed at the Department I should not have interposed.

Yours, truly,

M. BLAIR.

–––

ANNAPOLIS, January 24, 1862.

Governor SEWARD.

DEAR SIR: I place in your hands the inclosed papers and submit that Mr. Claggett’s case is a fit one for parole.

Yours, with respect,

REVERDY JOHNSON.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

WOODLIE, WASHINGTON COUNTY, MD., January 22, 1862.

Hon. REVERDY JOHNSON.

DEAR SIR: Peculiar circumstances will I hope justify a stranger in calling your attention to an important event now transpiring.

Thomas J. Claggett, a delegate to the last Legislature of our State, is now a prisoner at Fort Warren. He was arrested at his house on {p.732} the night of 17th September last at 2 o’clock by a party of soldiers; taken to Frederick, thence to Fort Lafayette, thence to Fort Warren where he now is. He has now been a prisoner for more than four months and yet no charges have been presented against him; no opportunity given him to confront his accusers.

Saint Paul appealed unto Cæsar for justice. To whom shall Mr. Claggett apply? Festus said, “It seemeth to me unreasonable to send a prisoner, and not withal to signify the crimes laid against him.” The Government in four months has presented no charge; has afforded no opportunity to face his accusers. Day after day, night after night passes. He is far away from home, from wife, from children, from business, from friends; anxiety harasses his mind; uncertainy lowers over his future. He knows not why or at whose instance he has been imprisoned.

Mr. Claggett is a farmer and lives some ten miles from Frederick City. He is a quiet, peaceable citizen; a sober, upright, honest citizen who has had but little to [do] with politics. He is a Protestant, an old Whig and has therefore had but little to do with Governor Lowe. He has been a vestryman for many years, a church member, a Sunday-school teacher; was always fond of children; and often amuses himself at the trickery and criminations of politicians. He is not the man for plots and treason, for conspiracy and rebellion.

He did not intend to meet the adjourned Legislature in Frederick last September. But for the sickness of his little son he would have been on the night of his arrest at the house of his sister in an adjoining county.

Mr. Claggett always disapproved of secession as a remedy for political grievances. He thought secession would be unwise, impolitic and inexpedient for our State. He thought the South had rights under the Constitution which a party might ignore, which our Government might allow fanatics to disregard, to trample under foot. Our political future looked dismal to him. I am a Union man. My father fought under the stars and stripes against Great Britain; my uncle, my cousin were officers under Government in that struggle. But the proclamations of Frémont and Phelps, the speech of Colonel Cochrane at Washington, and its indorsement by the Secretary of War, Cameron, fills me with dread. I shudder at the thought that in an evil hour fanaticism may usurp the place of patriotism and compromise.

Mr. Claggett has not given “aid or comfort” to the enemy. No charge of treason can be sustained against him. He would like to see the charges against him-to face his accusers. Can he be gratified?

The Government offered to liberate Mr. Claggett if he would take the oath of allegiance. He declined to take the oath. He says:

I owe a native allegiance to my country more sacred and binding than any naturalization oath can make and I say distinctly that in my case that allegiance has not been violated.

But he wishes to disperse the clouds of suspicion which now rest on his character by the act of his Government. If he is a traitor let the fact appear to the world. If he is an innocent citizen falsely charged by persons in the dark; if the Government has been misled by the busy mischief-maker, let the fact appear-the truth come out. Right wrongs no man. Mr. Claggett’s family for more than two centuries have been land owners in our State. His grandfather was chaplain to the first Congress, of untarnished memory; he desires to transmit to his children a good name. Is such desire unreasonable? Mr. Claggett is in moderate circumstances and therefore his time and attention to {p.733} business is necessary to the comfort and welfare of his family. His honor, the honor of his father’s house, is a consideration dear to his heart. How can he vindicate his name and his fame from the suspicions which now environ him?

Pericles in his dying moments declared,” I never yet caused a single citizen to put on mourning.” Happy the man in our day who at the close of life shall be able to say, I have wronged no man by word or deed; I was always ready to vindicate the cause of the innocent from the crafts and assaults of the false, the unscrupulous and the wicked.

Hoping you will excuse a stranger for thus taxing your time and patience and that you will aid in doing justice to a wronged and innocent man,

I am, respectfully, your obedient servant,

THOMAS MADDOX.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

ANNAPOLIS, MD., January 24, 1862.

The undersigned, delegates from Frederick County in the Legislature of Maryland, respectfully state that they are acquainted with Thomas J. Claggett, late a delegate from Frederick County in the last Legislature, and that we regard him as a harmless, peaceable and respectable citizen and believe that his release from confinement would be very acceptable to the people of Frederick County generally as it certainly would be to the undersigned.

THOS. HAMMOND. J. M. COCLE. THO. JOHNSON. JOSHUA BIGGS.

–––

I, Andrew A. Lynch, of Baltimore County, Md., do solemnly swear that I will support, protect and defend the Constitution and Government of the United States against all enemies whether domestic or foreign, and that I will bear true faith, allegiance and loyalty to the same, any ordinance, resolution or law of any State convention or Legislature to the contrary notwithstanding; and further that I do this with a full determination, pledge and purpose without any mental reservation or evasion whatsoever; and further that I will well and faithfully perform all the duties which may be required of me by law.

Hereby stipulating that I will neither enter any of the States in insurrection against the authority of the United States Government nor hold any correspondence whatever with persons residing in those States without permission from the Secretary of State, and also that I will not do any thing hostile to the United States during the present insurrection. So help me God.

ANDREW A. LYNCH.

Subscribed and sworn to this 24th day of January, A. D. 1862, before me at Fort Warren.

J. DIMICK, Colonel First Artillery and Brevet Colonel, Commanding Post.

I request this my protest may be filed with the oath which I have taken required of me by the State Department in their order to Colonel Dimick, January 20, 1862. I feel myself compelled by circumstances {p.734} personal to myself and which I ought no longer to resist [to yield], and in so doing protest against the legal right of the Department of State to make such a demand of me.

ANDREW A. LYNCH.

–––

WASHINGTON, January 25, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: Being satisfied that Messrs. Maxwell and Miller, members of the last Legislature of Maryland from Cecil County, and now confined at Fort Warren have neither the power nor the disposition to interfere in any way with the operations of the Government in putting down the rebellion and that they may with perfect safety and indeed with advantage to the Union sentiment of Maryland be discharged from custody I am induced to apply for their release.

They have declined to accept of a discharge upon condition that they would take the Congressional oath though I have authority for saying that they would gladly accept of a parole such as was granted to Mr. Davis, of Baltimore, and others.

I would respectfully suggest to the Department that they be granted a parole say for thirty days or longer, and at the expiration of that time that leave be given General Dix further to extend it if in his judgment it should be proper for him to do so. I am sure that no harm will or can result from such a manifestation of clemency on the part of the Government but that such a course would tend greatly to strengthen the power of the Union organization in Maryland.

These men are both young, have but little personal influence and are entirely harmless in their county where the Union majority was over 2,000 in a vote of 4,000. Many of their friends and relatives are loyal men and would be gratified at their release. They will doubtless give every reasonable assurance that they will in no way interfere in political matters as against the Government.

I am a resident of the same town and county with them and have known them for many years and am therefore competent to speak of the risk in releasing them. Notwithstanding my long acquaintance with them I assure you that no consideration of a personal character could induce me to solicit their release if I did not honestly believe that it could be granted with perfect safety.

Though I fully justified the Government in arresting them at the time and in retaining them ever since yet I now honestly believe that a longer confinement is entirely unnecessary.

The names of the parties in whose behalf I write are James W. Maxwell and William R. Miller, of Elkton, Cecil County, Md.

With great respect, I am, your obedient humble servant,

JOHN A. J. CRESWELL.

[Indorsement.]

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, January 29, 1862.

Respectfully referred by the Secretary of State to Major-General Dix for his opinion thereon with a request to return these papers.

E. D. WEBSTER.

{p.735}

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, January 27, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to inclose an application* signed by a large number of our most respectable Union men asking that Hon. Lawrence Sangston may be permitted to report to me for an extension of his parole on such conditions as I may think proper.

I concur in the request, and am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

* Omitted.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, January 29, 1862.

Col. JUSTIN DIMICK, Fort Warren, Boston Harbor.

COLONEL: Major-General Dix has been authorized by this Department to extend the parole of Lawrence Sangston and to request him to report to him (General Dix) at Baltimore instead of to you at Fort Warren.

I am, colonel, &c.,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, January 30, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have the honor to return the papers relating to Messrs. Maxwell and Miller, of Cecil County. I see no objection to their release as suggested.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

–––

FORT WARREN, BOSTON HARBOR, January 30, 1862.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: I have to report that Mr. R. M. Denison declines the parole of thirty days offered to him by your letter of 21st instant.

I am, sir, with the highest respect, your obedient servant,

J. DIMICK, Colonel First Artillery, Commanding Post.

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, January 31, 1862.

Col. JUSTIN DIMICK, Fort Warren, Boston.

COLONEL: You may release James W. Maxwell and William R. Miller upon their engaging upon honor that at the expiration of the period of thirty days from the date of their release they will voluntarily surrender {p.736} themselves to Maj. Gen. John A. Dix at Baltimore, to be by him returned to the fort unless he shall otherwise direct; and that in the meantime they will neither enter any of the States in insurrection against the authority of the Government of the United States nor hold any correspondence with any person residing in those States without permission from the Secretary of State, nor be engaged in any treasonable communication with any body nor do any act hostile or injurious to the Government of the United States.

I am, &c.,

W. H. SEWARD.

(Copy to General Dix.)

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, February 1, 1862.

Col. JUSTIN DIMICK, Fort Warren, Boston.

COLONEL: Your letter of the 30th ultimo has been received. You will please hold R. M. Denison in your custody till further orders from this Department.

I am, &c.,

F. W. SEWARD, Assistant Secretary.

–––

BALTIMORE, February 1, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: There is one sentence in a speech made by Mr. S. Teackle Wallis (now in Fort Warren) at a meeting held in the Maryland Institute in this city on the evening of February 1, 1861, that may not be known to you as I am sure that it is not to the community generally, and I therefore send-it to you as I find it in my file of the Baltimore American of the following day.

Mr. Wallis having expressed his “intense indignation which the course of Governor Hicks excited in his breast” and having commented on the Governor’s letter, &c., said:

From all this it is plain that you must patiently wait until Lincoln is inaugurated and then you will be called on to support his government. [Loud cries of “Never! Never!”] This is a compact, however, that requires two to agree to. After they have got you thus far it will be too late for you to express your views on the subject. ... They tell us that the Union is all in all and that secession is unconstitutional. Do they suppose that we are looking at statute books which are binding on all?

The last sentence is the one referred to above; and if Mr. Wallis and his friends did not feel themselves bound by “statute books” I can see no reason why they should find fault with you for exercising the same privilege.

The president of that meeting was Dr. A. C. Robinson. Among the vice-presidents I find the names of William G. Harrison, S. Teackle Wallis, Charles H. Pitts, T. Parkin Scott and J. Hanson Thomas.

Beside Mr. Wallis, Robert M. McLane, E. Louis Lowe and others addressed the meeting.

Very respectfully,

HENRY COLBURN, M. D.

{p.737}

–––

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, February 10, 1862.

Hon. REVERDY JOHNSON, Annapolis ,Md.

SIR: Referring to your note of the 24th ultimo relative to the release of Mr. Thomas J. Claggett I have to state that since a certain class of Maryland prisoners have declined to take the oath of allegiance from a misapprehension that it binds them to render partisan support to the persons composing the Executive Department of the Government of the United States the inclosed oath* so modified as to render such a construction impossible has been prepared. This form of oath will be tendered to them and if they decline to take it they will be retained.

The case of Mr. Claggett is understood to be one of this class.

I have the honor to be, &c.,

WILLIAM H. SEWARD.

* Not found.

–––

BALTIMORE, February 11, 1862.

Dr. Bernard Mills has been known to me for several years as an earnest and active member of the congregation of the Protestant Episcopal Church with which he worshiped until the present troubles. I had perfect confidence in his character as a Christian man. I know nothing of the cause of his imprisonment but am confident that he is incapable of making professions for the sake of release which he does not fully intend or may not be entirely relied on to fulfill to the uttermost.

W. R. WHITTINGHAM, Bishop of the Protestant Episcopal Church in Maryland.

–––

BALTIMORE, February 12, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

SIR: Among the political prisoners confined in Fort Warren is one Dr. Bernard Mills, a member of the late house of delegates of Maryland. The state of his domestic affairs, the entirely dependent and helpless condition of his family, his wife’s delicate health and near accouchement make his presence at home for a time very desirable and urgent.

For these reasons, sir, the said Dr. Bernard Mills through me, his brother, respectfully begs you to grant him a release from his confinement for thirty days on his parole.

Understanding that Maj. Gen. John A. Dix, commanding this department, is at present in Washington I respectfully ask a reference of this matter as soon as may be convenient.

I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient and humble servant,

LEONARD J. MILLS.

[First indorsement.]

DEPARTMENT OF STATE, Washington, February 13, 1862.

Respectfully referred by the Secretary of State to Major-General Dix, for his opinion with a request to return this letter.

E. D. WEBSTER.

{p.738}

[Second indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, February 14, 1862.

It is respectfully recommended that Dr. Bernard Mills be discharged from arrest on taking the oath of allegiance.

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

–––

FORT WARREN, BOSTON HARBOR, February 14, 1862.

Hon. W. H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.

SIR: I have the honor to report that Thomas J. Claggett declines taking the oath of allegiance. ...

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

J. DIMICK, Colonel First Artillery, Commanding Fort.

–––

WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, February 20, 1862-12.27 p.m.

Major-General DIX, Baltimore, Md.:

Will you have the kindness to report by to-night’s post the names of such of the Maryland prisoners as in your judgment may with safety be released under the recent order of this Department.

EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

–––

HEADQUARTERS, Baltimore, February 20, 1862.

Hon. EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

SIR: In compliance with your telegraphic dispatch of this morning I recommend the discharge of the following persons confined for political reasons from custody “on subscribing a parole engaging them to render no aid or comfort to enemies in hostility to the United States,” agreeably to your order of the 14th* instant: William H. Gatchell, John W. Davis, William G. Harrison, J. Hanson Thomas, Robert M. Denison, P. F. Rasin, William F. McKewen, Robert , Renwick, Charles D. French, Thomas B. Giles, Joseph Bacon, S. B. Frost, Robert W. Rasin, George Armistead Appleton, R. C. Holland, Edward C. Cottrell, J. B. Swain, E. H. McCubbin, William Bross, J. S. Coleman, J. H. Weaver, J. R. Runnell, H. Stunz, P. O’Brien, J. Smith, A. Thompson and William Perry. It may be that some of these persons have already been discharged by order of the Secretary of State. It is supposed that there may be other Marylanders in custody at New York or Boston. The foregoing list embraces only persons who were confined at Fort McHenry and transferred to other places.

I deem it proper to add for your information the names of persons from Maryland who ought not in my judgment to be released at present: George P. Kane, marshal of police, under indictment; Charles Howard, president of board of police commissioners; Thomas C. Fitzpatrick, a recruiting officer for the insurgents; Richard Thomas (Zarvona, or the French lady), under indictment; Frank Key Howard, {p.739} editor of The Exchange; T. Parkin Scott, H. M. Warfield, S. Teackle Wallis, ex-members of the Legislature, influential and dangerous; Dr. S. Brown, ready to enter the service of the insurgents as a surgeon; R. H. Bigger, a recruiting officer for the insurgents; George Julius, now on temporary parole and very vindictive; A. W. Habersham, ready to enter the Confederate service; Benjamin T. Gunther, of the Eastern Shore of Virginia, dangerous; Robert Hull, recently confined by Secretary of State; George William Brown, mayor of Baltimore; if released he would resume his office. The incumbent is a loyal man and discharges the duty of mayor by virtue of his office as president of the first board of the common council. The Legislature of Maryland is about to pass a law requiring a mayoralty election in May. Mr. Brown will then be ousted and may be safely released.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN A. DIX, Major-General.

* February 21 Secretary Stanton ordered to be released from various prisons on the 22d a large number of political prisoners upon their engaging upon honor to render no aid or comfort to the enemies of the United States. See Volume II, this Series, “Treatment of Suspected and Disloyal Persons,” for this order, and also the general order of the 14th. William G. Harrison, William H. Gatchell, and Henry M. Warfield declined this parole. See p. 748, this volume, for the unconditional release of the remaining Maryland political prisoners-COMPILER.

–––

FORT WARREN, February 22, 1862.

Hon. EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War, Washington.

SIR: As a member of the Legislature of Maryland I was taken from my dwelling at midnight of September 12 last by the military police in the city of Baltimore and have since been incarcerated in four several prisons and now nearly four months in this one of Fort Warren. I was told my arrest was by orders from Washington. I refuse to accept any release but an unconditional one because I will not seem even to acquiesce in an act which has violated one of the most sacred bonds of our Government, Article 4 of the amendments to the Constitution of the United States: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated, and no warrant shall issue but upon probable cause supported by oath or affirmation and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized.”

I have been arrested in defiance of law, punished without charge of crime or trial or judgment of my peers and I will not sanction the insinuation which a parole affords that any charge has been made and proved warranting what has been done.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM G. HARRISON.

–––

FORT WARREN, BOSTON HARBOR, February 22, 1862.

Col. J. DIMICK, Commanding, &c.

SIR: I propose to claim your attention to the reasons why I cannot accept the parole that has been offered to me through you and by authority from Washington, and which I ask the favor of your transmitting to the Secretary of War in whose keeping it appears I now am.

About midnight of the 12th of September, 1861, a body of armed men by practicing deception obtained entrance into my house and without warrant or any other mode known to the law arrested me as I then understood upon a telegraphic dispatch from William H. Seward, Secretary of State. I submitted to that arrest only on account of the force brought against me.

{p.740}

Immediately upon surrendering myself my house from cellar to roof was taken possession of by armed men and I was forced to deliver up all my papers and keys then upon my person. Amongst the papers then given up was a letter containing money and which I have never heard as having reached its destination. The sanctity of my bedchamber was invaded by the armed servants who were doing the bidding of the Secretary of State. My private papers were taken possession of; doors and drawers of my furniture were broken open; every indignity heaped upon my home and its decencies. During the period of the outrageous proceedings thus enacted in my house my brother and my relatives were denied admission whilst I was on my way to Fort McHenry, and my wife [left] alone in the house without even being allowed the company of one of her servants.

After my arrival at Fort McHenry a prisoner and after midnight I was ushered into a room without even a chair to sit upon, the luxury of a bed being entirely out of the question. From Fort McHenry I was taken to Fortress Monroe where fresh indignities inexcusable even if meted out to a known convict were experienced by me. Denied the right of writing to my friends unless couched in such terms as suited the officer in command, I was still without being made acquainted with the charges upon which I had been kidnapped. After remaining at this post and being treated with no other consideration than if I had been a mere dog save being surrounded with the paraphernalia of soldiers with guns I was still without warrant or color of law sent by sea to Fort Lafayette and put in charge of other jailers, confined in apartments which are already described and truthfully by a remonstrance forwarded on 8th of October, 1861, and addressed to the President of the United States. Continually making ineffectual attempts to know for what cause I had been forced from my home and was suffering the indignities of my jailers orders came from where I know not to place me upon a transport, the steamer State of Maine, utterly unseaworthy to carry the living freight which was forced into her hold and upon her decks. I was then transferred and still without any known authority to Fort Warren, where I now am and still without any information as to the grounds upon which I was originally arrested. During my imprisonment I have supplied from my own means bed, bedding, food and all the necessaries of life, and I now enjoy any comfort whatever because you have not condescended to act the jailer toward me.

You ask me to accept a parole; to accept an amnesty from the President of the United States. For what? Is it to force me without color of law to acknowledge a partial criminality when no charges have been preferred against me-when merely a telegraphic dispatch has arrested me and deprived me of my liberty? The idea is one which I cannot for a moment entertain. I challenge a trial. I crave to suffer for crimes if I have been guilty of any. I ask for the constitutional rights which you and the Secretary of War have sworn to defend. Give me the means by which I may enjoy the right of the humblest citizen suspected of the highest crime known to the law and I will be satisfied.

It is proper for me to state here that at the time of my arrest I was then a member of the Legislature of Maryland ready to perform my duties under the oath prescribed by the State and faithfully.

Very respectfully,

HENRY M. WARFIELD.

{p.741}

–––

FORT WARREN, February 25. 1862.

Hon. EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

SIR: I have read your order of the 14th instant and therefore address you this letter.

In the fall of 1859 I was elected a member of the house of delegates of Maryland (my native State), from Frederick County, to serve for two years.

In consequence of the difficulties growing out of the election of President of the United States and the subsequent action of some of the Southern States a special meeting of the Legislature of Maryland to be held in April, 1861, was called by the governor and I attended as a member from my county.

The journal of the house will show my whole action there. I favored peace measures and I voted against a proposition for secession by the Legislature. I thought the Legislature had no authority to pass such an act. I have never to my knowledge done anything against the Constitution and laws of my country.

I was arrested in September last without any charge being made against me. I have been imprisoned ever since and I do not yet know what is charged against me. Under these circumstances I think I have a right to ask an unconditional release that I may return to my family and my farm in Frederick County. I confidently refer to the member of Congress from my district-Hon. Francis Thomas-for my character.

I am, yours, respectfully,

THOS. J. CLAGGETT.

–––

ROUSE’S POINT, March 6. 1862.

Hon. B. M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

DEAR SIR: I inclose a letter* from “C. M.,” but in truth from John C. Brune, a rebel member of the Maryland Legislature, and since he has been in Montreal has shown himself as unscrupulous in his secessionism as any there. If it be a fact as he represents that the order for his arrest has been recalled I am confident misrepresentations have been made to the Department. For knowing as much as I do of him I am certain his entire sympathies are with the rebels.

Most respectfully, your obedient servant,

H. DUNN.

P. S.-I think Mr. Underwood has some evidence of his disloyalty.

* Not found.

–––

WOODLIE, WASHINGTON COUNTY, MD., March 12, 1862.

General DIX.

DEAR SIR: It is said that General Washington listened to the suggestions of his subalterns; that Doctor Rush inquired into the opinions of the nurses before forming opinions. I therefore hope you will {p.742} excuse me for taxing your attention as to Mr. Thomas J. Claggett, an ex-member of the Legislature now a prisoner at Fort Warren.

How is a State prisoner to make his escape? The suspension of the habeas corpus deprives him of all legal remedy. He can have no hearing. Whether innocent or guilty he is a prisoner. We know not when he may have a hearing.

Festus said “it seemeth to me unreasonable to send a prisoner and not withal to signify the charges laid against him.” Mr. Claggett was arrested on the 16th of September, six months ago less a few days. He has seen no charge against him; he has seen no witnesses. He and his friends have made an effort to find out his accusers and the charges against him in vain. I wrote to Governor Hicks, to our senator, Firey, to the honorable Messrs. Calvert and Thomas, members of Congress, to Mr. Reverdy Johnson, U. S. Senator-elect, without hearing a syllable against him in the way of charge. Mr. Claggett took the oath of allegiance to the Government which he says in a letter to me dated March 6, 1862, “I have not violated or intended to violate.” I married his sister, and as his connection believe that no charge of treason or complicity with traitors can be sustained against him. If the courts were open he would seek relief through them. We therefore are compelled to trouble you as one of the committee to inquire into the case.

Mr. Claggett is in no sense a politician. He has been accustomed to vote but not to participate actively in politics. He was never associated personally or politically with ex-Governor Lowe. Nicholas Claggett, his progenitor, was bishop of Exeter in the time of George II. His grandfather was first bishop of Maryland, and although ordained at Lambeth Palace by the Archbishop of Canterbury, who administered to him the oath of allegiance to the British Government and although he was suspected of disloyalty in our revolutionary struggle yet he was chaplain to our First Congress where he had the respect and confidence of all good men. It is supposed that he was the means of bringing the Reverend Doctor Lyall into the church.

Mr. Claggett has been for many years a vestryman and a Sunday school teacher. He is fond of children and agriculture. He is fond of home and rural life. He has no taste for intrigues, no desire for political distinction, no thirst for political power. He is a quiet, peaceable man.

Colonels Meredith and Irwin told me last June that the accused were often better than the accusers; so of General Patterson who commanded the Martinsburg expedition last June. I believe that Mr. Claggett has been falsely accused; that he is innocent of all effort to injure the Government by word or deed; that his arrest is ascribable to misrepresentation.

Will you please let me know what charges have been alleged against Mr. Claggett and let him free? I am satisfied if you investigate his case you will find him to be an innocent sufferer from the falsehood and misrepresentation which may have emanated from misunderstanding of some of our citizens. There were people in Maryland who would have coerced our State into secession. Mr. Claggett was not one of them.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

THOMAS MADDOX.

{p.743}

–––

TRAPPE, TALBOT COUNTY, MD., March 20, 1862.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State, Washington.

SIR: I have been awaiting for some time with no little degree of concern the release of the members of the late General Assembly of Maryland from Fort Warren. I was one of the members of that body and whatever may have been their real or imagined offense against the Government I feel myself bound in honor to confess that my guilt was the same with theirs both in degree and kind. Neither can I reconcile it with my own ideas of the duty which I owe both to myself and them to witness their confinement without sharing their sufferings with them.

Being engaged at the city of Annapolis in the performance of the duties of a legislative committee at the time of the reassembling of the Legislature in September last accounts for my absence from the city of Frederick then and perhaps for my enjoyment of my liberty now.

Please communicate with me at your earliest convenience and I will surrender myself to Colonel Dimick at Fort Warren at any time you may name unless my case be otherwise disposed of.

I shall regard this as my parole of honor for the performance of what I have hereby engaged to do and shall remain at this place until your communication reaches me.

I am, very respectfully, yours, &c.,

A. CHAPLAIN.

–––

FORT WARREN, MASS., March 20, 1862.

Hon. HENRY MAY.

DEAR SIR: As the health of my wife has become so extremely delicate and the period of her accouchement is daily expected (which with her is a period of extreme danger) added to the mental anguish which she endures in consequence of my long incarceration compels me to ask of you the following favor. It is this that you go immediately and see the Secretary of War and state my case and ask for my discharge. If he is not willing to give me an unconditional release give me a parole until my wife is better of her illness. I can report to General Dix at Baltimore, or I will return here if necessary.

He surely will not refuse me this when he remembers that I have been incarcerated now over six months for no other offense than being by accident a member of the Maryland house of delegates. I would not ask this but that I have been patiently waiting for more than a month from day to day for my discharge and yet it has not come. Others similarly situated, i.e., members of the Legislature, have been discharged upon parole from time to time. Had I violated any law or done any act hostile to the administration there would be some excuse for my detention.

I beg of you to see Mr. Stanton without delay and urge upon him my release in order that I may return to my afflicted family, for a few days’ delay may be productive of results I fear to think of. Your friends are all well here.

Yours, in haste,

B. MILLS.

{p.744}

–––

FORT WARREN, BOSTON HARBOR, March 27, 1862.

Hon. CHARLES B. CALVERT, Washington, D. C.

DEAR SIR: I was arrested more than six months ago by order of the United States Government I believe and have been held a prisoner in Government forts ever since. As you are the Representative of the Congressional district to which I belong I ask the favor of you to be informed of the cause of my arrest and detention and what charges if any there are against me, and to aid me in having my case brought before the proper tribunals to be disposed of. Permit me here to say that I don’t believe there is a single imputation against me. Therefore this is the more oppressive.

Hoping that I may hear from you soon, I remain, Your obedient servant,

CLARKE J. DURANT.

–––

OFFICE OF THE COMMISSION RELATING TO STATE PRISONERS, Washington, March 29, 1862.

Col. JUSTIN DIMICK, Fort Warren, Boston harbor.

SIR: You may release Josiah H. Gordon, E. G. Kilbourn, J. L. Jones, T. J. Claggett, C. J. Durant, B. Mills, ... upon their giving their written paroles to render no aid or comfort to the enemies in hostility to the Government of the United States. Please make report of your proceedings under the above order to Mr. E. D. Webster, secretary of the commission at Washington.

Very respectfully, yours,

J. A. DIX, Major-General. EDWARDS PIERREPONT, Commissioners.

–––

FORT WARREN, April 2, 1862.

Hon. EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

SIR: I am a citizen of Maryland, a State which still forms part of the United States within which the judicial power exists in full vigor and over which the Constitution and laws of the Union have never failed to be Promptly and effectively executed by the civil authorities except so far as they have been interfered with and obstructed by the military power of the United States under the direction of the President. I was elected to the house of delegates of my State from Allegany County in 1859 for a term which expired in November last, and qualified as such in the usual manner. While on my way to the seat of government of the State in obedience to an order of the General Assembly for the purpose of attending to the duties assigned me as a member of one of its committees charged to inquire into the condition of the State library I was arrested by two officers in the military service of the United States on the 30th day of August last without warrant or other authority except that which they claimed to exercise as lieutenants in the Third Regiment of Pennsylvania Volunteers, and {p.745} with no evidence to justify the act except the following paragraph found in the Baltimore American of that morning to which my attention was called by them for the first time:

ARREST OF MARYLAND SECESSIONISTS.

The Boonsborough Odd Fellow says that on Tuesday night Daniel Deckart,, editor of the Hagerstown Mail, was seized by agents of the General Government and sent to Fort McHenry. General McKaig, of Allegany County, and two others whose names we have not heard were also taken in charge. They are in hot pursuit also of Mr. Gordon, of the same county.

I was taken by them to Washing-ton City where my person and baggage were subjected to a most rigid search which lasted about two hours and in the course of which my clothing was stripped from my person and closely examined, and all my private papers and letters including those from my wife were read from beginning to end and offensive comments made upon them in my presence, and some of them taken from me and have not yet been returned. Finding nothing upon my person or among my baggage to justify my detention and no witness appearing to show probable grounds of suspicion I supposed that I would be released without delay. In that, however, I was disappointed. Instead of an honorable discharge and such atonement for the outrage already committed upon me as I had a right to expect I was confined in one of the political prisons of that city for six days, closely guarded by armed soldiers and refused the privilege of changing my soiled clothes in which I had been traveling for four days previously.

While thus detained I made daily inquiry of the officers in command as to the cause of my arrest and detention and through them as far as possible demanded to be informed of any accusation that might be against me and an opportunity to have an investigation of the same. This privilege, however, was refused, and to the present time I have no knowledge of the cause of my arrest and detention except so far as I have already stated.

On the fifth day of my imprisonment I was informed that I could be released if I would take an oath binding myself among other things to support the Constitution and Government of the United States against all enemies whether domestic or foreign and that I would bear true faith and allegiance to the same, any ordinance, resolution or law of any State convention or Legislature to the contrary notwithstanding. Knowing that I had done no act that would not bear the most rigid legal scrutiny and that my arrest and detention were wholly unlawful I refused to submit to the additional outrage or to bind myself to support a government outside of the Constitution. On the next day I was told that informal charges had been made against me in which my loyalty to the Constitution and laws of the United States had been called in question but that I could not have a hearing or be confronted with my accusers. I was also told that I could be released if I would take an oath that I would support the Constitution and laws of the United States and that I would not take up arms against them or give aid or assistance to their enemies. This I regarded as another attempt to degrade me by imposing unlawful conditions upon my discharge, but as there was nothing in it that required me to do any act in violation of my duty to my country or exacting anything from me that I did not intend most strictly to observe I submitted to the wrong and thereby obtained my discharge supposing that I would not again be molested so long as I kept that oath inviolate.

{p.746}

In this I was again disappointed, and although every part of that obligation was strictly observed on my part the authorities at Washington were not so scrupulous in observing their part of the undertaking and I was again arrested on the 17th of September, at Frederick, and from that time to the present I have been in close confinement as apolitical prisoner outside of the limits of my State and the jurisdiction of the courts having cognizance of any charge that could have been made against me. I deem it unnecessary to detail to you the many privations, hardships and sufferings that I have borne in my own person, or those which have been inflicted upon a helpless family during this long imprisonment which has deprived them of their protector and exposed them to outrages and insults of the most disgraceful character.

By Executive Order No. 2, bearing date the 27th of February, 1862, and signed by you as published in the newspapers I observe that General John A. Dix and Hon. Edwards Pierrepont were appointed “to examine the cases of the State prisoners remaining in the military custody of the United States, and to determine whether in view of the public safety and the existing rebellion they should be discharged or remain in military custody, or be remitted to the civil tribunals for trial,” and I understand from the published account of their proceedings that they have entered upon and made some progress in the duty thus assigned to them. Without further notice that my case had been submitted to them or that they had it under consideration or the nature of the charges or whether any existed against me I was summoned to the quarters of Col. Justin Dimick to-day and by him shown an order signed by General Dix and Mr. Pierrepont directing him to release me upon giving a parole of honor to be signed by me pledging myself to “render no aid or comfort to the enemies in hostility to the Government of the United States.”

This parole I refuse to give for the following reasons: The obligation given by me on the 5th of September last and which I most strictly observe was not regarded by the authorities at Washington as having any mutuality but has been entirely disregarded by them, so that I have no security that any other pledge would be respected more than the former was or that the utmost good faith in its observance by me would protect me from another unlawful seizure before I could reach my home. The term Government as used in the parole is unauthorized by the Constitution or by any act of Congress passed prior to the late extra session that I am aware of, consequently of doubtful signification and may be construed into a pledge that I will give no aid or comfort to any person in any of the States still adhering to the Union who may differ with the present administration as to the proper limits of its power, the mode of supporting and carrying on the war or the terms upon which it shall be closed.

My arrest was calculated to throw a cloud of suspicion over my character and the numerous publications made in the newspapers reflecting on myself and the political prisoners generally which I was not permitted to correct or contradict have increased that suspicion and no doubt left the impression upon the minds of many persons that I had committed some grave offense against the laws of my country which rendered me unfit for the society of my fellow-men and justified this severe and unusual treatment; and now that the agents appointed by the President for that purpose after full examination “ex parte and in a summary manner” of all the evidence and charges against me have determined that there is nothing to justify them in “remitting me to the {p.747} civil tribunals for trial” or in retaining me “in military custody” and that I am entitled to “be discharged,” it is due to my own self-respect as well as to the character for integrity and obedience to the laws of my country which I have endeavored to establish that I should insist on an unconditional discharge and submit to no terms which could warrant an unfavorable interpretation or justify any conclusion against my character. It is also due to my countrymen everywhere that I should not permit a precedent so unusual and unauthorized to be established in my case as that of arresting a citizen without warrant or probable cause, detaining him for months without a hearing and finally when an examination is made and the arrest and detention appears to be wholly unlawful and without cause to tell him it is all a mistake; that he is guilty of no offense; that there is no grounds even for submitting his cause to the consideration of a grand jury and that the present condition of the country even does not require his detention “in military custody,” but that the wrong will continue unless he will degrade himself by promising in writing over his own signature that he will not commit treason against his country, which is the greatest of all criminal offenses.

The Executive Department owes it to itself and to the country to deal fairly with me, and now that investigation has been made and the finding is that I should be discharged justice to all parties concerned requires that I should be restored to my family without further injury to my character. Besides the oath taken by me in September is more comprehensive than the parole now proposed, and if I could not be trusted upon my oath I can give no parole of honor to those who reject my oath.

I address this to you because I understand that General Dix and Mr. Pierrepont have closed their duty and because I think they have not fully understood my case and for the further reason that I think it proper to bring the facts of my case to your special attention inasmuch as most of them occurred before you came into office.

Hoping that you may agree with me in this view, I remain, yours, &c.,

J. H. GORDON.

P. S.-I hope you will do me the favor to have the papers which were taken from me at Washington in August last returned to me. They can be of no importance to any one but myself and are valuable to me only as private letters and papers.

Yours, &c.,

J. H. GORDON.

–––

OFFICE OF THE COMMISSION RELATING TO STATE PRISONERS, Boston, May 7, 1862.

...

William G. Harrison was brought in and stated that he had once declined to give his parole to render no aid or comfort to the enemies in hostility to the Government of the United States. He did so still and was recommitted.

{p.748}

–––

OFFICE OF THE COMMISSION RELATING TO STATE PRISONERS, Boston, May 7, 1862.

H. M. Warfield was brought in and examined. He stated that he had been tendered his release upon his parole which he declined. He does so still. Recommitted.

–––

OFFICE OF THE COMMISSION RELATING TO STATE PRISONERS, Boston, May 7, 1862.

Col. JUSTIN DIMICK, Fort Warren, Boston.

COLONEL: The following persons having complied with the conditions required by the commission you will please discharge them, viz, J. H. Gordon. ... You will at the same time return to each of them any property in your possession belonging to them.

Very respectfully, yours,

B. D. WEBSTER.

–––

ADJUTANT-GENERAL’S OFFICE, Washington, D. C., November 26, 1862.

Col. J. DIMICK, U. S. Army, Fort Warren, Boston, Mass.:

The Secretary of War directs that you release all the Maryland State prisoners,* also any other State prisoners that may be in your custody, and report names to this office.

E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant. General.

* See pp 613, 614 for a previous order releasing a number of the Maryland prisoners, including several members of the Legislature.

–––

FORT WARREN, BOSTON HARBOR, November 27, 1862.

General L. THOMAS, Adjutant-General, Washington, D. C.

SIR: I have the honor to report that I have this day released the following-named prisoners in obedience to telegram 26th instant, viz: George P. Kane, George William Brown, Charles Howard, Frank K. Howard, Henry M. Warfield, William G. Harrison, Robert Hull, S. Teackle Wallis, Charles Macgill, William Gatchell, Thomas W. Hall, T. Parkin Scott, William H. Winder, B. L. Cutter.

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

J. DIMICK, Colonel First Artillery, Commanding Post.

Library Reference Information

Type of Material: Book (Book, Microform, Electronic, etc.)
Corporate Name: United States. War Dept.
Main Title: The War of the Rebellion:
a compilation of the official records of the
Union and Confederate armies.
Prepared under the direction of the Secretary of War
by Robert N. Scott.
Washington, Govt. Print. Off., 1880-1900.
Published/Created: Washington : Government Pub. Off., 1880-1901 (70 v. in 128).
Description: 70 v. in 128. 24 cm.
Subjects: United States. Army--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Sources.
Confederate States of America. Army--History--Sources.
United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Regimental histories.
LC Classification: E464 .U6