many more were apprehended, and suffered for it. I knew of three such being shot at one time, each having taken three bounties before they were finally captured.
The greater part of these bounty-jumpers came from Canada
A large number of reliable troops were necessary to take these men from the recruiting rendezvous to the various regiments which they were to join.
The mass of recaptured deserters were put to hard labor on government works.
Others were confined in some penitentiary, to work out their unexpired term of service.
I believe the penitentiary at Albany
was used for this purpose, as was also the Old Capitol Prison
Many more were sent to the Rip Raps
, near Fort Monroe
On the 11th of March, 1865, President Lincoln
issued a proclamation offering full pardon to all deserters who should return to their respective commands within sixty days, that is, before May 10, 1865, with the understanding that they should serve out the full time of their respective organizations, and make up all time lost as well.
A large number whose consciences had given them no peace since their lapse, availed themselves of this proclamation to make amends as far as possible, and leave the service with a good name.
This act was characteristic of the Emancipator
's matchless magnanimity and forgiving spirit, but scarcely deserved by the parties having most at stake.
I have already intimated that death by hanging was a punishment meted out to certain offences against military law. One of these offences was desertion to the enemy, that is, going from our army over to the enemy, and enlisting in his ranks to fight on that side.
In the autumn of 1864--near Fort Welch, I think it was — I saw three military criminals hanged at the same moment, from the same gallows, for this crime against the government.
They were members of the Sixth Corps.
There was less ceremony about this execution than that of the deserter, whose end I more fully described.
The condemned men were all foreigners,