ALS copy (ADfS?), DLC-RTL; LS, DNA RG 60, Papers of Attorney General, 1864, Box 117. Attorney General Speed replied in a twelve-page opinion on January 3, 1865. His conclusions were: `` . . . the written record of the proceedings before a naval Court martial becomes, when the proceedings are consummated by the action of the proper revisory authority, the record of an adjudicated case tried and determined by a legally constituted court of justice; and . . . any limitation to an exemplified copy of such a record on file in thePage 191
Navy Department, when properly applied for by an individual, would be contrary to law. . . .
``With respect to the second point submitted to me, I am of opinion, that the Secretary of the Navy, and any of his subordinates, having knowledge of the contents of records of naval courts martial on file . . . after the proceedings have been consummated . . . are bound in law to answer to a commission of a State Court directing the taking of his and their testimony as to the contents of such records. . . .'' (DLC-RTL).