Asa P. Blunt to E. Mason

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Your note of yesterday was received

In reply I have only to say that your loyalty to the United States Government is strongly suspected not only by the troops in this immediate vicinity but also at Head Quarters. And altho' I shall not permit my troops to destroy your property unless necessary for government purposes or to disturb your family, still I cannot make arrangements for the comfort of yourself & family with the same cordiality that I could if I felt that you stood by the flag under which I serve, which has so long protected you.

My advice to you is, that in the place of the noncommittal emblem which now hangs over your dwelling you unfurl the stars and stripes, and if you have not already done so that you take the oath of allegiance to our Government at once.

If you will do this and show yourself at heart a Union man, I

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will guarantee to you all the protection you need and will promise that my men will take pleasure in guarding your property rather than in destroying it.

If you prefer not to take this course I can simply treat you as an alien enemy.

Yours &c.Asa P. Blunt
Col. Comg. 2d. Brigade
Casey's Division

Camp Vermont Nov. 6th 1862
To G. Mason, Esq.
Spring Bank, Va.