From the Richmond Dispatch, 12/8/1862, p. 1, c. 6
Escapes of Convicts. – Three convicts made their escape from the Virginia penitentiary on the night of Friday last. This they did by fitting a key to their cell doors and scaling the outer walls after eluding the vigilance of the interior guard. The parties are described as follows, viz: Edward Barry, Irishman, five feet seven inches high, twenty-five years old, common complexion, dark hair, blue eyes, no scars visible, received into the institution December 21st, 1861, for six years for grand larceny; Fountaine Rowe, alias James Rowe, American, five feet eight inches high, brown hair, hazel eyes, left wrist out of place owing to bad setting, received at the penitentiary for two years, on conviction for grand larceny, September 18th, 1861; was his second conviction. Silas Beasley, American, five feet two inches high, fair complexion and hair, hazel eyes, letter B on the left arm in India ink, very pale, Sent for three years about two months ago for a second grand larceny, aged about 17; had grown very much since first registered.
All the above prisoners were sent up by Judge Lyons's Court, and are notorious offenders. Beasley was known as one of the ring leaders of the band of juvenile thieves that had long infested Richmond prior to his sequestration.