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History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Sources. Description Letter sent by Titian J. Coffey to Judge Thomas White on December 23, 1863. [Coffey is Judge White's nephew and was his law partner in Indiana, Pa. He is now Assistant and Acting Attorney General of the United States.] Harry, Judge White's son, is being held captive by the Confederates. Coffey and Judge White have made several attempts to free Harry through various means. Coffey chastises Judge White for suggesting a plan that would require Coffey (or someone in government) to furnish a pass that would enable the bearer to travel to Libby Prison in Richmond to bribe guards for Harry's release. Coffey writes that that would be inappropriate for a government official to do. He also writes that he cares more about Harry than he does his own brothers. Coffey notes that Judge White's "parental anxiety" seems to have clouded his judgment and has caused him to unfairly blame Coffey for the failure to secure Harry's release. This, Coffey says, is understandable but he is disappointed that Judge White has not accepted Coffey's assurance that every effort is being made by the War Department to free Harry and that Secretary of War Stanton believes that the Department's efforts would have been more successful if outsiders had not interfered. [Note: the first page of this letter seems to be missing.]




White, Harry L., 1834-1920. Prisoners of war, Union, Virginia, Libby, 1860-1870. Libby Prison, Virginia, Richmond, 1860-1870. White, Thomas, 1799-1865. Coffey, Titian James, 1824-1897, Correspondence. United States, History, Civil War, 1861-1865, Prison


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The Historical and Genealogical Society of Indiana County, PA; White Collection

Letter from Titian J. Coffey to Thomas White, December 23,  1863