The Papers of Ulysses S. Grant: April 1 - August 31, 1862 - Vol. 5

By John Y. Simon; Ulysses S. Grant | Go to book overview
upon the government, which you are charged with attempting to subvert. Know- ing my own duty, I can allow no interference on the part of persons who cannot give evidence of loyalty." Corinth Herald, Dec. 15, 1903. All movable property was destroyed or stolen while Whitfield was imprisoned, he asserted, including fourteen wagonloads of furniture shipped to Springfield, Ill., where, he believed, Mrs. Grant lived. Ibid.

In a letter printed in the Corinth, Miss., Subsoiler and Democrat, Nov. 16, 1894, Louise Gay Whitfield stated that her father, Francis E. Whitfield, "one of the hottest Rebels around here," had been arrested by U. S. Army officers after he protested their use of his carriage. Her long account, filled with noble south- erners, nasty Yankees, and loyal slaves, does not accord with any available con- temporary documentation, and does not mention either the alleged receipt or the stolen furniture.

USG later wrote that: "I do not recollect having arrested and confined a citizen (not a soldier) during the entire rebellion. I am aware that a great many were sent to northern prisons, particularly to Joliet, Illinois, by some of my subordinates with the statement that it was my order. I had all such released the moment I learned of their arrest; and finally sent a staff officer north to release every prisoner who was said to be confined by my order." Memoirs, I, 398. See letters to Col. Jesse Hildebrand, Oct. 3, 30, 1862. Obviously USG took a more active role in arresting civilians, including Whitfield, than he later recollected, but accounts by Whitfield and his family are filled with too many errors, contra- dictions, and implausibilities to be acceptable. The alleged receipt of USG, avail- able only in Whitfield's letter, must be viewed with suspicion.

In 1868, Gen. Nathan B. Forrest stated that he had investigated and dis- proved the story that USG had carried off furniture from Corinth. Stanley F. Horn, Invisible Empire: The Story of the Ku Klux Klan 1866-1871 ( Boston, 1939), pp. 415-16.


To Brig. Gen. William S. Rosecrans

Corinth July 19th 1862

GENL. ROSECRANS

Send four Companies of Morgans Division immediately to Tuscumbia 1 to relieve the Provost Guard there. I would like you to visit this Division, soon after its removal to see in person, that the locations are well chosen. I have no inspector or other Staff Officers to entrust this matter to. You may send Col Tinkham 2 as proposed. Send by Rail with rations

U. S. GRANT
Maj Genl

-220-

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