Having determined to use the negro as a soldier, there is no way but to give him all the protection given to any other soldier. The difficulty is not in stating the principle, but in practically applying it. It is a mistake to suppose the Government is indifferent to this matter, or is not doing the best it can in regard to it. We do not to-day know that a colored soldier, or white officer commanding colored soldiers, has been massacred by the rebels when made a prisoner. We fear it, we believe it, I may say,--but we do not know it. To take the life of one of their prisoners on the assumption that they murder ours, when it is short of certainty that they do murder ours, might be too serious, too cruel, a mistake. We are having the Fort Pillow affair thoroughly investigated; and such investigation will probably show conclusively how the truth is. If after all that has been said it shall turn out that there has been no massacre at Fort Pillow, it will be almost safe to say there has been none, and will be none, elsewhere. If there has been the massacre of three hundred there, or even the tenth part of three hundred, it will be conclusively proved; and being so proved, the retribution shall as surely come. It will be matter of grave consideration in what exact course to apply the retribution; but in the supposed case it must come.

[There was a massacre of a black company and their officers at Fort Pillow--they were prisoners who later on, the day of their capture, were ordered executed. The black soldiers were tied alive to individual planks--then man and plank were cobbled up like cord wood and burned. The white officers were shot. D.W.]

TO CALVIN TRUESDALE.

EXECUTIVE MANSION, WASHINGTON, April 20, 1864.

CALVIN TRUESDALE, ESQ., Postmaster, Rock Island, Ill.:

Thomas J. Pickett, late agent of the Quartermaster 's Department for the island of Rock Island, has been removed or suspended from that position on a charge of having sold timber and stone from the island for his private benefit. Mr. Pickett is an old acquaintance and friend of mine, and I will thank you, if you will, to set a day or days and place on and at which to take testimony on the point. Notify Mr. Pickett and one J. B. Danforth (who, as I understand, makes the charge) to be present with their witnesses. Take the testimony in writing offered by both sides, and report it in full to me. Please do this for me.

Yours truly,

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO OFFICER COMMANDING AT FORT WARREN.

EXECUTIVE MANSION, WASHINGTON, April 20, 1864.

OFFICER IN MILITARY COMMAND, Fort Warren, Boston Harbor, Mass.:

If there is a man by the name of Charles Carpenter, under sentence of death for desertion, at Fort Warren, suspend execution until further order and send the record of his trial. If sentenced for any other offence, telegraph what it is and when he is to be executed. Answer at all events.

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO OFFICER COMMANDING AT FORT WARREN.

EXECUTIVE MANSION, WASHINGTON, April 21,1864.

OFFICER IN COMMAND AT FORT WARREN, Boston Harbor, Mass.:

The order I sent yesterday in regard to Charles Carpenter is hereby withdrawn and you are to act as if it never existed.

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL DIX.

EXECUTIVE MANSION, WASHINGTON, D. C., April 21, 1864.

MAJOR-GENERAL Dix, New York:

Yesterday I was induced to telegraph the officer in military command at Fort Warren, Boston Harbor, Massachusetts, suspending the execution of Charles Carpenter, to be executed tomorrow for desertion. Just now, on reaching your order in the case, I telegraphed the same officer withdrawing the suspension, and leave the case entirely with you. The man's friends are pressing me, but I refer them to you, intending to take no further action myself.

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL BUTLER.

EXECUTIVE MANSION, WASHINGTON, April 23, 1864.

MAJOR-GENERAL BUTLER, Fort Monroe, Va.:

Senator Ten Eyck is very anxious to have a, special exchange of Capt. Frank J.

Abraham Lincoln
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