In Whitman's Hand

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Title: James Speed to Horace H. Harrison, 19 March 1866

Date: March 19, 1866

Whitman Archive ID: nar.00066

Source: National Archives and Records Administration. Transcribed from digital images or a microfilm reproduction of the original item. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Contributors to digital file: Elizabeth Lorang, Nima Najafi Kianfar, Kevin McMullen, and John Schwaninger

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Attorney General's Office,

March 19, 1866.


H. H. Harrison, Esq.

U. S. Attorney, Middle Dist, Tenn.

Nashville, Tenn.


I am directed by the President to say to you that he deems it important; & you are therefore instructed to prosecute some few persons who have been indicted for high treason, in your court. He leaves the matter, as to which of those indicted shall be tried, to your discretion & judgment, with only this qualification, the persons prosecuted must have been prominent, conspicuous, & influential in getting up, sustaining & prosecuting the rebellion.

Please advise me promptly who is to be tried, when the trial will likely come off, & whether you desire assistant counsel.

I am, Sir, respectfully,

James Speed,

Attorney General

March 19, 1866.

Letters exactly as above, were also sent this day to the following:

John L. Williamson, Esq. U. S. Attorney, Western Dist. of Tenn. Memphis, Tenn.

Joshua Tevis, Esq. U. S. Dist. Attorney, Dist. of Kentucky, Louisville, Ky.

Crawford W. Hall, Esq. U. S. Dist. Attorney, Eastern Dist. of Tenn. Rogersville, Tenn.


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