From the Richmond Dispatch, 9/20/1862, p. 2, c. 2
Three Men to be Shot. - The court-martial now in session here has condemned three soldiers to be shot for desertion in the face of the enemy, one or more of whom had been lately received as substitutes in the respective companies from which they hail. The parties are now confined in Castle Thunder under strict guard. Their names are David W. Rogers, of company G, 1st Regiment Va. Vols.; Patrick McGowan, of company 1, 14th Virginia, and John Kelleher, of company F, same regiment. The execution, which has been appointed to take place at 11 o'clock next Wednesday, at Camp Lee, will be conducted under the supervision of Capt. G. W. Alexander, Assistant Provost Marshall of the Eastern District. All three of the men will be shot at one time. As is known in all executions by military law, a dozen men are selected as executioners, only six of whose muskets are loaded. When the above unhappy men are placed in a triangular position, with twelve men firing on each of them, they will soon be relieved of all pain. The Government having found the substitute nuisance growing into an intolerable evil, have resolved to put a stop to it. Hardly one out of fifty that enter the army stays any longer than he can find a convenient chance to decamp. By this means both the Government who accepts in somebody else a stead and the individual who purchases his services are swindled. It is known that by adopting various aliases and disguises some men have succeeded in selling themselves as substitutes a half dozen times. The same court-martial that condemned the above men to be shot, found Owen Maguire, a member of Co. H, 1st Va. Regt., guilty of desertion, and sentenced him to receive one hundred lashes. This punishment was commuted to half the number by Brigadier-General Winder. The culprit will receive these striking marks of approval at an early day. Maguire was a new member of Company H, an organization that the chances of war has nearly annihilated.