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Cold Harbor, Va., June 5, 1864.

General R. E. Lee,

Commanding Confederate Army:

It is reported to me that there are wounded men, probably of both armies, now lying exposed and suffering between the lines occupied respectively by the two armies. Humanity would dictate that some provision should be made to provide against such hardships. I would propose, therefore, that hereafter when no battle is raging either party be authorized to send to any point between the pickets or skirmish lines, unarmed men bearing litters to pick up their dead or wounded without being fired upon by the other party. Any other method equally fair to both parties you may propose for meeting the end desired, will be accepted by me.



U. S. Grant,





Source: The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, Series 1, Vol. 36, Part 3, p. 600.


Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2016 June 7