More than a year ago, recognizing the injustice of the arrest of noncombatants, I submitted the following proposition to the Federal authorities, to wit: That peaceable, non-combatant citizens, of both the United States and the Confederate States, who are not connected with any military organization, shall not be arrested by either the United States or Confederate armies within the territory of the adverse party. If this proposition is too broad, let the only exception be the case of a temporary arrest of parties within army lines, where the arresting party has good reason to believe that their presence is dangerous to the safety of the army, from the opportunity afforded of giving intelligence to the enemy. It is to be understood, however, in the latter case, the arrest is to cease as soon as the reason for making it ceases, in the withdrawal of the army, or for any other cause. This proposal is understood to include such arrests and imprisonments as are already in force. Although this proposition, so reasonable and humane in its terms, has been before your Government for more than a year, it has never been accepted. I now again invite your attention to it. If it does not suit you, I will thank you to suggest any modification. I am willing to adopt any fair and reciprocal rule that will settle this matter on principle. It must, however, be settled by rule. It cannot, with any safety, be determined by “special cases.”The Federal authorities never did accede to these terms, or agree to the adoption of any common rule on the subject. And yet General Hitchcock, in his report, says that “the rebels inaugurated a system of seizing unoffending citizens of the United States and subjecting them to maltreatment in various ways, in order to effect a particular object, which became apparent when a demand was made for their release;” and asserts that the aforesaid agreement on the subject, which the Confederates sought to obtain, “would have been a virtual acknowledgment of the independence of the rebel government, and would have foreclosed all proceedings of the United States against all persons whomsoever engaged in the crime of treason and rebellion.” General Hitchcock, it seems, did not stop to inquire whether the same argument, if there was any force in it, could not just as easily have been urged against the adoption of any cartel. But the pretension that the rebels “inaugurated” the system of seizing unoffending citizens is too bald for anybody's credence. This extract from Hitchcock's report, however, discloses one thing, which was really the prime cause of all the difficulties connected with the detention and exchange of prisoners, civil and military, to wit: an unwillingness to recognize the equality of the belligerents. Pray, how, upon any other theory than that of equality, can a cartel be framed or executed? On the 26th of July, 1863, General John H. Morgan and his command were captured. They were carried to Cincinnati, and from thence, by General Burnside's order, he and twenty-eight of his officers were sent to the penitentiary at Columbus, where they were shaved and their hair cut very close by a negro convict. They
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