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The case of a Confederate prisoner at Washington.

The subject of the exchange of prisoners being new prominently before the public, it is proper that we should call attention to the case of Dr. Day, who has been imprisoned for a year at Washington. For a period after his arrest he was confined in the common jail, and kept in that vile receptacle for several months, when he was removed to the Old Capitol, to quarters but little better, and held in solitary confinement; made to sleep throughout the whole winter upon the bare floor, and allowed only sufficient food, of the coarsest kind, to support life. The pretext for such inhuman treatment towards this venerable gentleman was almost too absurd to be stated. He was charged with having put Yankees to death and fed them to his hogs! and other atrocities of a like nature, which only the fertility of Yankee imagination could have invented. Dr. Day was taken at Drainsville, where he was acting as a surgeon in our army. His commission, owing to the interruption of travel, did not reach there until after his arrest, up to which time he was indefatigable in the discharge of his professional duties, not only in behalf of our own brave soldiers, but towards the wounded of the enemy, two of whom were under treatment in his own house when he was captured. His situation has always been a very critical one, because, not being held as a prisoner of war, he is liable at any moment to be tried upon the charges above stated. He has no commission to protect him, and unless some express stipulation is made to that effect, he will not have the benefit of the new cartel for the exchange of prisoners.

The enemy's scouts are the class who have, in exposed sections, committed the greatest outrages and depredations, atrocious instances of which have been reported to the War Department at Washington; and it would seem but just that these offenders should be held as hostages for such of our own citizens as do not come under the protection of the articles of war. When we remember that but little more than a century since the ancestors of the ‘ "irrepressible conflict"’ party condemned and burnt as witches the helpless victims of cupidity or wrath, a well-grounded apprehension must be fell for the fate of our friends who have the misfortune to be in the hands of the more lawless and fanatical descendants of those Puritan fathers.

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Puritan (Pennsylvania, United States) (1)
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