Monday, 1865 March 27, Tallahassee, Florida: “This will be carried to your outpost . . . under Flag of truce.”

[A Confederate general proposes an exchange of paroled Union prisoners of war in Florida and Georgia]

[Headquarters Military District of Florida]
Tallahassee, March 27, 1865
General:
This will be carried to your outpost
by Capt. John C. Rutherford C. S. A.
under Flag of truce. He is the bearer
of a letter from Brig. Genl. Pillow[,] Commissary
[General] of prisoners C. S. A. addressed to
the officer Commanding Federal forces
Jacksonville and Capt. Rutherford is
also charged with the duty of paroling
and sending within the lines occupied
by the U. S. troops for exchange, the prisoners
of war held by the C. S. and now
confined within certain states, Georgia
and Florida among others. This exchange
is in accordance with terms agreed
on between Lt. Gen. Grant Commanding
Armies of the United States, and the
proper authorities of the [Confederate] States.
Under existing circumstances the
prisoners in Georgia and this place

[page 2]
can be delivered more conveniently and
comfortably to themselves at Jacksonville
than Mobile. [Alabama]
If you will receive the prisoners
and receipt for them as paroled prisoners
for Exchange, I will do all in my
power to send them without delay to
Jacksonville.
I am very respectfully
Your [obedient servant]
[Samuel] Jones
Major General
To
Brig. Genl. E. P. Scammon
Commanding 4th [Separate] Brigade
Jacksonville Fla. [Florida]

[reverse endorsements]
Headquarters Military District of Florida
Tallahassee, Florida
March 27, 1865
Jones, Sam.
Major General
L. R. B. 23 JDF Vol.2
Transmits a letter
From Brig. Genl. Pillow
Commissary General Prisoners
C. S. A., proposing to
deliver prisoners at
Jacksonville for
exchange.
States that if the
prisoners will be
received, he will
do all in his power
to send them to
Jacksonville without
delay.

Stamped postmark “Received Hd, Qts. March 29, 1865.”

[Editor: Three days after Lee’s surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia at Appomattox, this prisoner exchange remained uncompleted though preliminary arrangements had been made between Scammon and Rutherford for an exchange to have taken place at Jacksonville pending General Grant’s approval. Mobile, Alabama, was occupied by Union troops on April 12, 1865. Confederate Captain John C. Rutherford, assistant adjutant general to Major General Howell Cobb (1815-1868) since January 10, 1863; he began his wartime service as a sergeant in Cobb’s Legion, organized 1861 by then-Colonel Thomas Reade Roots Cobb (1823-1862), brother of Howell Cobb, and composed of cavalry, infantry, and artillery. Brigadier General Gideon J. Pillow (1806-1878), commissary general of prisoners of war held by the Confederacy, February 1863. Lieutenant General Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885), general-in-chief of the armies of the United States since March 1864. Major General Samuel Jones (1819-1887), commander of the Confederate Department of South Georgia and Florida; paroled May 1865 after surrendering himself and the Department of Florida and South Georgia’s troops on May 10, 1865 at Tallahassee. Union Brigadier General Eliakim Parker Scammon (1816-1894), a West Point graduate (1837) and later a prisoner of war (February-August 1864), commanded the District of Florida at Jacksonville until war’s end. The Fourth Separate Brigade, assigned to Scammon’s District of Florida command as of a November 30, 1864 reorganization of Union troops in the Department of the South, consisted of eight regiments (17th Connecticut; 75th and 107th Ohio; 3d, 34th, and 35th U. S. Colored Troops; 4th Massachusetts Cavalry, and 3d New York Light Artillery, Battery F).]

MSS 3070-H

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