"Confederate Veteran's mention of Delawarean, Samuel B. Hearn, and his Confederate Compatriots"

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   In the duecourse the Gittings carriage was again at her disposal for conveyance across the city to the Camden Street Station of the Baltimore and Ohio railroad, where she took the train for Washington. Thus terminated all intercourse between the President's family and his Baltimore friends, for a period of several years, when Mr. Lincoln's gratitude for his wife's entertainment by the Gittings family was manifested in a remarkable matter.

   It was on the night of August 28th, 1864 that a number of ladies and gentlemen trooped into the Gittings house, the scene of Mrs. Lincoln's visit in 1861. They made known that they had come to confer about the cause of three Confederate soldiers, John H. R. Embert, Braxton Lyon, and Samuel B. Hearn, all privates of Company B, 1st Maryland Cavalry Regiment of the Confederate army, who had been tried and convicted, and sentenced by a court marshal to be hanged aspise at Fort McHenry the following morning. Mr. Gittings good offices were invoked to prevent the execution. Various extenuating circumstances were set forth, which, in the judgment of the visitors, favored a remission of the sentence. They referred to the fact that Secretary Stanton had been appealed to without avail, and Gen. Lou Wallace, commander of the Maryland Department, had likewise turned a death ear to all appeals. The pending execution was a subject of considerable discussion in the newspapers, and it was well known that president Lincoln had for some days been approached by many influential citizens of Baltimore, who begged for a commutation of the death sentence with no results beyond his patiently listening to their pleadings, and many were the rumors afloat as to his intentions in the matter. Nevertheless, Mr. Gittings' callers felt that his efforts might bear fruit; and to expedite matters, they had a special train in readiness at the railroad station to take them to Washington.

   There was much pleading with Mr. Gittings, who was averse to making the trip because of the lateness of the hour. Moreover, and what was of far greater importance, he declared, was his lack of influence with the President in a matter of this kind. Mr. Gittings proving obdurate, the visitors now concentrated their energies on his wife, and after much persuasion the two consented to accompany the party, which was composed of Thomas A. Embert and Valentine B. Clements, brother and brother-in-law of the prisoner Embert, William Goldsborough, and Lemuel Roberts, of Queen Anne County MD.; Charles Gwynne, Beverly Johnson, and Garett W. Brown of Baltimore. All of these, together with judge Richard Grayson, of Baltimore County and C. Hart and George Sykes, of Washington, had previously presented the case to the President, and had been favorably impressed by their kind reception in Mr. Lincoln's assurance that he would give the case his best attention. Furthermore, he told them that he was opposed to hanging except when duty compelled. Samuel W. Smith, director of the Baltimore and Ohio railroad, and a number of clergymen had also sent petitions to the President.

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