Negroes in Oar Army. 217
opportunity of bringing the matter before the President was lost, as he was too good a soldier and strict a disciplinarian to think of send- ing it over the head of his superior.
1 The day following, Major- General W. H. T. Walker addressed him a note, stating that this paper was of such a dangerous (I think he said incendiary) character, that he felt it his duty to report it to the President, and asking if General Cleburne would furnish him a copy and avow himself its author.
Both requests were promptly complied with, Cleburne remarking that General Walker had done him an unintentional service, in ac- complishing his desire, that this matter be brought to the attention of the Confederate authorities. Communication with Richmond was then very slow and uncertain. General Cleburne, naturally, felt somewhat anxious as to the outcome of the affair, though mani- festing no regrets, and in discussing the matter and possibilities, said the worst that could happen to him would be court-martial and cash- iering, if which occurred, he would immediately enlist in his old regiment, the I5th Arkansas, then in his division; that if not per- mitted to command, he could at least do his duty in the ranks.
After the lapse of some weeks the paper was returned endorsed by President Davis, substantially, if not verbatim, as follows:
" While recognizing the patriotic motives of its distinguished au- thor, I deem it inexpedient, at this time, to give publicity to this paper, and request that it be suppressed. J. D. "
Upon receipt of this, General Cleburne directed me to destroy all copies, except the one returned from Richmond. This was filed in my office desk, which was subsequently captured and burned with its contents by the Federal cavary during the Atlanta campaign.
COMES TO LIGHT.
After the war, I was several times solicited, from both Confederate and Federal sources, to furnish copies, which was impossible, as I felt sure the only one retained had been destroyed, as above stated, and that no other existed. A few years ago Major Benham died in California, and to my extreme surprise and delight, a copy the one supplied him at Tunnel Hill was found among his papers. This was forwarded to Lieutenant L. H. Mangum, Cleburne's former law