Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln. Volume 8.
Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865.

Annotation

[1]   ALS-F, Louisville, Kentucky, Post, September 4, 1916. Captain John B. Castleman of General John H. Morgan's command was one of a group of rebels who went to Chicago during the Democratic Convention, with plans, it was charged, to release prisoners of war and to assist the Sons of Liberty in a ``North-western Insurrection.'' (OR, I, XLV, I, 1077, Colonel Benjamin J. Sweet to James B. Fry, November 26, 1864). He was captured and held in close confinement as a spy at Camp Morton. After being transferred to Point Lookout and later to the Old Capitol Prison in Washington, Castleman was returned on April 28, 1865, to Hovey's command at Indianapolis, where he was to be tried (OR, II, VIII, 87, 477, 511, 519). He was released without trial, however, on condition that he leave the United States.

According to an article accompanying the facsimile published in the Louisville Post, Lincoln gave his order of November 29 to Judge Samuel M. Breckinridge, of St. Louis, Missouri, whose wife was Virginia Castleman, sister of John B. Castleman, with the comment, ``Sam, this is for you and Virginia, entrusted in confidence, with the condition that its existence shall not be known unless the emergency arises for which this letter provides.'' Castleman's banishment lasted for eighteen months, and he never knew of Lincoln's order until the original was given to him by his brother-in-law fifteen years later.