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[51] General had been removed from Davis' limbs, wrote in the name of the Secretary of War:

Brevet-Major-General Miles is hereby authorized and directed to place manacles and fetters upon the hands and feet of Jefferson Davis and Clement C. Clay whenever he may deem it advisable in order to render their imprisonment more secure.’ (1 21 War of Rebellion, p. 565.)

Under this permit General Miles, on the 24th day of May, wrote to Dana: ‘Yesterday I directed that irons be put on Davis' ankles, which he violently resisted, but became more quiet afterward.’ (121 War of Rebellion, p. 570-71.)

This was going a little too far even for the official stomach of the non-combatants. The communication was probably intended only for the sympathetic eye of Dana, but the battle-scarred veterans, assigned to this ignoble guard duty became restive, and the fact of the use of irons leaked out, and the newspapers gave it circulation. The people at the North did not receive the information with the enthusiasm which Dana and Miles had expected, for cruelty is not a characteristic of the American. The fact that a State prisoner, who had been the chosen head of an empire, had been put in irons excited sympathy and indignation instead of applause. Hence, on May 28th, Secretary of War Stanton telegraphed Miles from Washington (Id., p. 577):

Please report whether irons have or have not been placed on Jefferson Davis. * * If they have been, when was it done, and for what reason, and remove them.’

To this Miles replied: ‘I have the honor to state in reply to your dispatch, that when Jefferson Davis was first confined in the casemate the inner doors were light wooden ones without locks. I directed that anklets be put upon his ankles, which would not interfere with his walking, but would prevent his running, should he endeavor to escape. In the meantime, I have changed the wooden doors for grated ones with locks, and the anklets have been removed. Every care is taken to avoid any pretense for complaint, as well as to prevent the possibility of his escape.’ (Id., p. 577.)

General Miles and his apologists have always said, in defence of his mediaeval treatment of his delicate prisoner, that he merely obeyed orders. It is true that Assistant Secretary Dana had ‘authorized ’

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