Page:Confederate Military History - 1899 - Volume 1.djvu/535

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CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY.

should be made to suffer for their cause in prison when ever such suffering contributed to the crushing of the rebellion. Confederate sentiment unvaryingly required the opening of the prisons by equal exchange and the settlement of the issue by treaty or battle. "I insist," says Mr. Stephens, "upon irrefutable fact that but for the refusal of the Federals to carry out an exchange, none of the wrongs or outrages, and none of the sufferings incident to prison life on either side could have occurred."

There is no purpose in this history to recount the cruelties practiced during the great struggle of the South for independence, and hence no account will be given of the atrocities at Camp Douglas, Rock Island, Elmira, Point Lookout or anywhere perpetrated by Federal subordinates in charge of Confederate prisoners. There were sufferings in all prisons and brutalities perpetrated in this as in other wars, but the proofs furnished by the evidence of General Butler, by the orders of Federal military officers, by the orders and communications of General Grant, and by the reports of Secretary Stanton, all of which are of record, fix the responsibility of this uncivilized mode of war upon the Federal administration. Secretary Stanton's report of July 19, 1866, shows that 26,246 Confederate soldiers died in Northern prisons, and 22,576 Union soldiers died in Southern prisons. Twelve per cent of the Confederate prisoners who fell into Northern captivity died notwithstanding all the facilities for receiving food, clothing, medicines and healthful conditions which the United States unquestionably possessed, while in the absence of these requisites on the part of the Confederacy the astonishing fact appears that less than nine per cent of the Union soldiers in Southern hands died in prisons. It is indisputably established that the Confederate authorities constantly pressed exchanges on equal terms, that they acceded to terms that were unequal for the sake of ex-