Wednesday, June 8, 2011

June 9 1861 (Sunday): Kidnaped!

Confederate Prison, Salisbury NC (

                                                            WASHINGTON CITY, June 9, 1861.
    The petition of the undersigned, a citizen of the State of Maryland residing in the city of Washington, respectfully showeth that on Monday last an armed body of men from Virginia invaded the State of Maryland near Seneca in Mongomery County, and by force arrested and carried into Virginia Manuel C. Causten (brother-in-law of your petitioner), who was on a visit to his wife.  Said Causten is a private in  a volunteer mounted company of this city and was not on any military duty when he was kidnapped and carried out of the State by armed men.  Rumor states that he was taken to Manassas Junction and then to Richmond, but to this date none of his family or friends are aware of what became of him.
    Now your petitioner prays that your honorable body may inquire into the facts relating to this invasion and desecration of the soil of my native State and demand proper reparation from the State of Virginia and the immediate release of said Causten.
    And your petitioner will ever pray, &c,
                                                                        McCLINTOCK YOUNG

Young had been chief clerk of the Treasury Department for many years and had many political connections.  He attempted to use those connections with a Maryland legislator, William G. Harrison, on behalf of his brother-in-law, a member of the Washington militia unit known as the President's Mounted Cavalry.  On a visit to his wife he was captured and sent on to Richmond and was held for a year.  On his release, President Lincoln commissioned him a Lieutenant in the regular infantry.  He was then captured at 2nd Bull Run and held in Richmond and Salisbury NC for another year until he was exchanged.  Causten is buried in the Congressional Cemetery in Washington.  Harrison never presented the petition to the legislature.  In September he was arrested along with a number of members of the Maryland legislature when the administration came to believe they would pass an ordinance of secession.  Afterwards, Young forwarded this note to Secretary of State Seward in an attempt to create more problems for Harrison.

 For more information on Causten, we refer you to:

Official Records, Series II, Volume 1, Page 598.

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