From the New York Times, 2/15/1864
THE ARMY OF THE POTOMAC
INTERESTING NEWS FROM RICHMOND.
Reported Escape of One Hundred and Nine Union Officers.
WASHINGTON, Sunday, Feb. 14.
A gentleman who, to-night, arrived from the Army of the Potomac, saw, before
he left there, a Richmond paper of Thursday, found on the person of a deserter
who came into our lines, in which appears an article stating that one hundred
and nine officers have escaped from the Libby prison, by digging a tunnel under
the street for that purpose. It is supposed the prisoners had been engaged upon
the work for at least a month. They were missed at roll-call, and forthwith
troops were dispatched in various directions to capture them. Four were
overtaken on the Williamsburg and Hanover Court-House road. The other, it is
suspected, were secreted in the neighborhood in Richmond. The guards were
arrested on the belief that they were in collusion with the prisoners, but were
afterward released, the subterranean mode of escape having become known. The
paper says that NEAL DOW was not among the runaways, but was probably waiting to
accompany the next batch.
The deserter above referred to says a large number of his regiment, the
Fourteenth Louisiana, are barefoot, and that the daily ration consists of a
quarter of a pound of meat and one pint of meal.
There have been no active military movements in our army for a week past.
Capt. John F. Porter, of the Fourteenth New York Cavalry, arrived here to-day
overland from Richmond, having escaped two weeks ago from Libby Prison. He left
the prison in a rebel uniform, having secured an abandoned one, and remained
nine days in Richmond without exciting suspicion. Among the officers recently
escaped from Libby Prison are Colonel STREIGHT, Colonel TIPPEN, Major JOHN HENRY
and Colonel RODGERS; but it is not known yet whether they have succeeded in
getting clear of the rebel dominions. The rations issued to the officers in the
prison consisted of a quart of rice to sixteen men every eight days, a small
piece of corn bread every day to each, about four ounces of very poor fresh meat
once a day, and salt and vinegar very rarely.
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