On my return home, after an absence of a month, I find your letter of July 17th, inclosing a communication from General James H. Wilson
to the Philadelphia
weekly times, headed “Jefferson Davis
flight from Richmond
You asked me to inform you how much truth there is in the statement of General Wilson
, and say that you desire my answer for publication, and request me to make it full.
My answer is at your disposal, and may be published or not, as you think best.
I will answer this article as well as I can remember the facts at this date, and those which are material, so far as they come to my knowledge, were doubtless so impressed on my mind by the deep interest of the occasion that they will not be forgotten.
I have in the outset to say that General Wilson
must have written his statement from information derived from others, as he could not personally have known the facts about which he writes; and that he has either adopted the fanciful fiction of others, who know as little of the real facts as himself, or he has been egregiously imposed on. I have read the slip you send me twice carefully over; and if there is a single truth in it, outside of the great historical facts incidentally referred to, of the fall of Richmond
and the surrender of General Lee
, I have not discovered it. On the contrary, it is made up of statements which are utterly void of truth.
I will call attention to some of them.
The statement has been made by General Wilson
, as it has been made in many other newspaper articles, that “On the first Sunday in April, 1865, while seated in St. Paul's church, in Richmond