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Letter to General Schofield complaing about murder of John M. Blakely and G.B. Blakely, Confederate Prisoners. Waynesville, Mo. August 30, 1862

Waynesville, Mo., August 30, 1862.

General SCHOFIELD, Saint Louis, Mo.
GENERAL: I feel that duties bind me to report to you some of the acts and orders executed by my superior regimental officers but wish to do it with all respect due them; yet I must condemn the act as one diabolical, inhuman and unsoldier like, which I feel assured you will condemn in the same spirit.
On the evening of the 29th instant a messenger came to my office and informed me that some 300 rebels, under command of Col. Robert B. Lawther, of Jefferson City, were making their [way] to North Missouri. I immediately notified the fact to Col. A. Sigel, commanding this post, when he ordered out all the available force at his command. Our pickets fired on them about six miles west of this post on the Springfield road.
Our command captured two prisoners and they were turned over to me at this post as provost-marshal. They were young men (John M. Meadows and G. B. Blakely) who had been in the service ever since the commencement of this rebellion. They surrendered to our command and were properly brought in and turned over to me as prisoners of war and placed under guard in the guard-house. Afterwards in the hours of the next night they were by the orders of Colonel Sigel taken from the guard-house without my knowledge or consent and escorted to the woods where they were most inhumanly murdered and butchered, and half covered up and left to the mercy of the brute creation.
General, I know that we have orders from you to take no prisoners (which I heartily approve), but the spot where they are taken in my judgment is the place where you intended to have them executed; not after being placed under guard, then withont judge or jury court-martial or any form of trial taken forcibly from the guard-tent and mercilessly murdered. To be done in such a manner is uncivilized and unsoldierlike.
General, as all know that it will advance the cause in this part of the State to have such a policy cease and have this case investigated I have merely attempted to do my duty in stating this case. I merely speak for myself; others condemn it as severely as I do--that is, all the regiment.
I am, your most obedient servant,
Captain and Provost-Marshal, Post Waynesville, Mo.

Source: Official Records, Series 2, Volume 4.

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