caused the Andersonville prisoners to suffer. Wirz was even offered his life, it is said, if he would implicate Davis, but he withstood the temptation. The Northern historians have generally asserted that Davis had seen the Chandler report, and consequently have held him responsible for the suffering that resulted after the date of the report. James Ford Rhodes, the most liberal of the Northern historians of the war, does not quite accept the Southern contention that the report was never forwarded to Davis. In explanation of the matter, it has been suggested that Chandler and Winder, who had charge of all Federal prisoners, were so unfriendly that Chandler's report, which attacked Winder, was somewhat discounted by Secretary Seddon and turned over to Winder for explanation. Further, the record shows that Seddon had, before the Chandler report reached him, issued orders to move some of the prisoners from Andersonville. In the first letter, in saying that the ‘United States authorities are to blame,’ Mr. Davis was referring to the refusal of General Grant to exchange prisoners with General Lee. Grant said: ‘If we commence a system of exchange which liberates all prisoners taken we shall have to fight on until the whole South is exterminated. If we hold those caught, they amount to no more than dead men.’ In regard to Stanton's report, Mr. Davis had in mind those statistics which he later gave in his book, ‘The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government.’ Federal prisoners held by the Confederates 270,000, of whom 22,576 died; Confederate prisoners held by the Federals 220,000, of whom 26,245 died. Colonel Wood mentioned in the second letter was John Taylor Wood, the grandson of Colonel Zachary Taylor. He was one of President Davis' aids de camp. The original of these letters were furnished me by Mrs. Chilton, who lives in Richmond. They have never before been printed, and, so far as known, contain the only statement ever made by Mr. Davis in regard to the Chandler report.
Walter L. Fleming, Professor of History, Louisiana State University.