the exchange question, and especially the matters that led to a suspension of the cartel.
In narrating them, I have, as far as I well could, presented them in chronological order, that they might be better grasped.
There are some other matters connected with exchanges which, though minor in importance, may be of interest.
One of the earliest difficulties connected with the cartel was the matter of the arrest and detention of non-combatants.
, who proclaimed that his headquarters
were in the saddle, a thing which most people would have believed without that information from him, on the 23d of July, 1862, one day after the adoption of the cartel, issued a general order
directing the arrest of all disloyal male citizens within the Federal
lines, or within their reach in the rear.
Those who would take the oath of allegiance to the United States
, and furnish sufficient security for its observance, could remain unmolested; but those who refused were to be removed from their homes, and if found again within the lines, or at any point in the rear, they were to be “considered spies and subjected to the extreme rigor of military law.”
In pursuance of this and other orders, peaceable, non-combatant citizens of the Confederate States
, especially men of mature age, engaged in the pursuit of their ordinary avocations, were arrested and thrown into prison or sent from their homes.
This was frequently done during the march of the Federal
forces through the Confederate States
, and, it may be, in some cases under circumstances which justified the arrest.
But our complaint, prolonged through the war, was loud that when the invading army retired from the neighborhood where the arrest was made, the noncombatants were not released from imprisonment.
This practice forced upon, the Confederates
a partial system of retaliation, and accordingly, upon the invasion of Pennsylvania
by General Lee
, some fifty non-combatants of that State and Maryland
were captured and brought to Richmond
Moreover, some persons of well-known Union sentiments within the Confederate States
were arrested and confined in Castle Thunder.
These circumstances provoked a long correspondence between the respective Agents of Exchange.
I sought as earnestly as I could to establish a rule which would prevent the arrest or incarceration of civilians on either side.
I maintained that the capture of non-combatants in the general was illegal and contrary to the usages of civilized warfare, and only excused the arrest of the Pennsylvanians on the ground of retaliation, after the failure of all other means of prevention.
To show clearly and officially what were the actual views of the Confederate Government in this matter, I quote the material part of a letter which, on the 31st of October, 1863, I addressed to General S. A. Meredith