Thursday, January 10, 2008

Captain Henry Wirz: ruthless villain of Andersonville, or innocent pawn? (part 2 of 5)

[Part 2 of 5 in a series of documents that suggest Wirz's innocence]

The following is an extract from a letter of Captain C. B. Winder to Mrs. Jefferson Davis, dated Eastern Shore of Virginia, January 9, 1867:

"The door of the room which I occupied while in confinement at the Old Capitol Prison, Washington, was immediately opposite Captain Wirz's door — both of which were occasionally open. About two days before Captain Wirz's execution, I saw three or four men pass into his room, and, upon their coming out, Captain Wirz told me that they had given him assurances that his life would be spared and his liberty given to him if he (Wirz) could give any testimony that would reflect upon Mr. Davis or implicate him directly or indirectly with the condition and treatment of prisoners of war, as charged by the United States authorities; that he indignantly spurned these propositions, and assured them that, never having been acquainted with Mr. Davis, either officially, personally, or socially, it was utterly impossible that he should know anything against him, and that the offer of his life, dear as the boon might be, could not purchase him to treason and treachery to the South and his friend."

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