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

To Joseph Hooker [1]

Major General Hooker Executive Mansion
Cincinnati, O. Washington, Feb. 12. 1865

Is it Lieut. Samuel B. Davis whose death sentence is commuted? If not done, let it be done. Is there not an associate of his also in trouble? Please answer. A. LINCOLN

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Annotation

[1]   ALS, DNA WR RG 107, Presidential Telegrams, I, 339. Hooker replied on the same day: ``It is Lieut Saml B. Davis whose death sentence has been commuted to confinement at hard labor at Ft Delaware. No associate of his is in any immediate danger that I know of'' (DLC-RTL).

Lieutenant Samuel Boyer Davis, CSA, was ordered released from confinement at Fort Warren (AGO General Court Martial Orders No. 660, December 20, 1865). On February 7, 1865, Senator George R. Riddle and Senator Willard Saulsbury of Delaware had written Lincoln asking clemency for Davis (DLC-RTL). A letter from Hooker to Lincoln dated February 7 indicates that Davis had been arrested in Cincinnati on charges of being a spy, and sentenced to death by a military commission ``now in session in this city. The sentence was approved by me, with the view of commuting it to confinement . . . during the war, which was done day before yesterday.'' (OR, II, VIII, 191-92).