From the Richmond Dispatch, 5/19/1863, p. 1, c. 5
Attempts to Get Out of Prison. – One day last week a portion of the prisoners confined in the northeast wing of Castle Thunder cut a hole through the floor of the room in which they were, and let themselves down into a room filled with tobacco fixtures. Here they set to work and dug through a chimney, and then commenced a tunnel under the alley in rear of the old U. S. Hotel. This alley is about 15 feet wide, and the parties worked eight feet under ground, but they were so assiduous in their endeavors that they had gotten across the alley and in an adjacent lot, (still under ground,) when the whole play was discovered by a fellow prisoner, and the scheme nipped in the bud. It took about three weeks to dig through the alley.
On Friday night, at the same prison, some men confined in the southeastern section of the building, cut through the floor of the citizens’ room, and, letting themselves down into a room containing soldiers undergoing sentence of court-martial, they cut nearly through the wall adjoining the castle garden. They proposed to escape that night by pushing the few remaining bricks aside and getting into the garden. The plan was frustrated by a timely discovery. On Sunday night a number of the desperadoes confined in cell No. 11, at the city jail, broke through the north to the south side and into the jail yard. They were heard by watchman Hall and Deputy Sergeant Sadler, after they had commenced removing bricks from the outer wall, near the gate, and fired on, when they rapidly retreated to their cells.