Captain Charles T. Hudson, Fourth Michigan Cavalry, writes to the Detroit Tribune, July 24th, 1875, as follows:
I was not the first to see our distinguished captive, nor did I see him in his disguise at all. Several claim that honor, and, I have no doubt. all speak the truth. On our way back to Macon, however, Mrs. Davis told me, and I will use her own words: “I put my waterproof cloak and shawl on Mr. Davis upon the impulse of the moment, not knowing, or having time to think, what else to do, in hopes he might make his escape in that disguise; and I only did what any true woman might have done under similar circumstances.” This was told me by Mrs. Davis in the course of conversation on our way back to Macon while halting to feed and rest our horses, she being in the ambulance at the time. Therefore, although I did not see Mr. Davis in the disguise of a woman, I had Mrs. Davis' word that she did disguise him that he might make his escape. If further proof is wanting, let me add, that upon our arrival at Fortress Monroe with our prisoners, acting under orders of the Secretary of War, I was sent on board of the Clyde, then lying in Hampton Roads, to get the shawl (the waterproof having been obtained the day previous by Colonel Pritchard) worn by Davis at the time of his capture. Upon making known my business to Mrs. Davis, she and Mrs. Clement C. Clay, particularly the latter, flew into a towering rage, and Mrs. Clay, stamping her foot on the deck of the vessel, advised Mrs. Davis to “shed her blood before submitting to further outrage.” After telling Mrs. Davis that my orders were imperative, and that she had better submit gracefully to my demands, she became somewhat pacified, and said she “had no other wrappings to protect her from the inclemency of the weather.” I then told her I would go ashore and buy her a shawl, which I did, paying six dollars for it. Upon presenting it to her, she held it up, and, with scorn and contempt, turned to Mrs. Clay and exclaimed, “a common nigger's shawl.” She then handed me two shawls very similar in appearance and told me to take my choice, adding that she did dress Mr. Davis in her attire and would not deny it, at the same time expressing great surprise that the Secretary of War should want her clothing to exhibit, as if she had not already been sufficiently humiliated.