Today in History:

114 Series II Volume I- Serial 114 - Prisoners of War


of it by his troops and a number of my men put to death, together with several innocent lookers-on--men, women and children. My command was then marched as prisoners of war in triumph to this place. I am now informed, as I was at the time of the surrender, by the captain that my command may be released upon the officers and men giving their parole "not to take up arms or to serve in a military capacity against the United States during the present civil war. "

Against the whole proceeding of Captain Lyon as well as against the terms of release I most earnestly protest, for the following reasons:

That in addition to the obligation of loyalty which rests upon every citizen every man of my command now held as a prisoner has voluntarily taken an oath to sustain the Constitution and laws of the United States.

That when my camp was attacked in this unwarrantable manner and during the previous days of its existence the only flags that floated there were those of the United States with all the stars and its fellow bearing alone the coat of arms of the State of Missouri.

That in addition to all this on the morning before this attack was made I addressed to Captain Lyon a communication, informing him of the proffer of services I had previously made of myself and of all my command, and if necessary the whole power of the State of Missouri, to protect the U. S. property, and assuring him that I had in no respect changed those views or opinions, either of my own volition or through any orders emanating from my constitution commander.

Under all these circumstances I appeal to you as the chief representative of the United States in this department for justice on behalf of those loyal citizens who are now held as prisoners of war, captured under and marching to their place of confinement with the flag of the Union flying over their heads. I ask that you will not put upon the command the additional indignity of requiring us to give our parole when we have already given our oath in support of the Constitution, but that you will order our restoration to the liberties of which we have been illegally deprived, as well as of the property of the State and individuals, as the larger portion of the equipments have been purchased with the private funds of the individuals of my command, both officers and men.

I trust that such as have been so purchased will at least be restored to the proper owners.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brigadier-General, Missouri Volunteer Militia.

Saint Louis, Mo., May 18, 1861.

Lieutenant Colonel E. D. TOWNSEND,

Asst. Adjt. General, Hdqrs. of the Army, Washington.

SIR: I have the honor to report that on the 14th instant a writ of habeas corpus was served on me requiring me to bring before Judge Treat, judge of the U. S. court, eastern district of Missouri, Captain Emmett MacDonald, one of the officers captured at Camp Jackson, near this city, May 10, by the U. S. forces, under the command of Captain N. Lyon, Second Infantry.