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Full text of "Prison life in the South : at Richmond, Macon, Savannah, Charleston, Columbia, Charlotte, Raleigh, Goldsborough, and Andersonville, during the years 1864 and 1865"

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PRISON LIFE IN THE SOUTH: 



AT 



RICHMOND, MACON, SAVANNAH, CHARLESTON, COLUMBIA, 

CHARLOTTE, RALEIGH, GOLDSBOROUGH, 

AND ANDERSONVILLE, 

DURING THE YEARS 1864 and 1865. 



By a. O. ABBOTT, 

LATE LIEUTENANT FIRST NEW YORK DRAGOONS. 



toitl) MnstxatiouB, 



NEW YORK: 

HARPER & BROTHERS, PUBLISHERS, 

FRANKLIN SQUARE. 



^^*^^- Igettysburg college I 

I Gattysburg, Pa. <t 



I 



LIBRARY - I 



OVffL WAR iNST, 

. A 13 



Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year one thousand 
eight hundred and sixty-five, by 

Harper & Brothers, 

In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the Southern District 
of New York. 



TO THE 

OFFICERS OF THE FEDERAL ARMY 

WHO HAVE BEEN CAPTURED ON THE 

BATTLE-FIELD, 

AND WHO HAVE SUFFERED, WITH HIMSELF, 

THE PRIVATIONS OF A LINGERING CAPTIVITY 

IN SOUTHERN PRISONS, 
Bf)zsz Sfeetcijes are mespectfuUs iBetiicateti hs 

THE AUTHOR. 



I GETTYSBURG COLLEGeI 
Gettysburg, Pa. ? 



- LIB 



PREFACE. 



The following pages are offered to the reading public, 
with the hope that they will throw some light upon the 
barbarous treatment we received at the hands of the 
Rebels. 

They do not claim to tell all the story of Prison Life, 
only a part. Others are filling it up, dark and gloomy as 
is the picture ; yet pen and tongue both fail to tell it all. 

I had no intention of writing a book till we had been 
several weeks at ColumlDia, S. C, Having kept both a 
diary and journal since my capture, npon reading por- 
tions of it to some of my fellow-prisoners, they persuaded 
me to write it out in full. The rough manuscript was 
mostly written in a brush shanty, sitting flat on the 
ground, writing on my knee. A portion of that manu- 
script was brought through the lines by Lieutenant 
Krohn, 5th ISTew York Cavalry, in December, 1864, by 
secreting it in the back of his coat. The rest came 
through in a cotton pillow, in possession of Colonel War- 
ren Shedd, 30th Illinois. The Appendix is principally 
the work of J. O. Goodrich, Adjutant 85th New York 
Yeteran Yolunteers, a Plymouth capture. 

To these, as well as those officers who have so kindly 
furnished me with their experience, I return my sincere 
thanks. Should these pages serve to throw any light 
upon the question '' What shall we do with the Negro?" 
I shall feel that my labor has not been in vain. 

A. 0. A. 

Portageville, N. Y., August, 1865. 



CONTENTS. 



CHAPTER I. 

Pagb 

Capture, and Arrival at Libbt Prison 13 

CHAPTER 11. 
In Libby 22 

CHAPTER III. 
From Libby to Macon, Georgia ". 42 

CHAPTER IV. 
At Macon, Georgia 58 

CHAPTER V. 
At Savannah, Georgia 81 

CHAPTER VI. 
At Charleston, South Carolina 102 

CHAPTER VII. 
At Columbia, South Carolina — Camp Sorghum 124 

CHAPTER Vin. 
At Columbia, South Carolina — Asylum Prison 150 

CHAPTER IX. 
Homeward Bound 17G 

CHAPTER X. 

At Andersonville. (By Ira E. Forbes, Corporal 16th Connecti- 
cut Volunteers.) 192 

CHAPTER XI. 

Among the Negroes. (By H.B.Seeley, Adjutant 86th New York 
Volunteers.) 207 

A2 



X CONTENTS. * 

CHAPTER XII. 

Page 

In Search of Liberty. (By , Major, New York Volun- 
teers.) 219 

CHAPTER XIII. 
In the Hospital near Charleston, South Carolina. (By A. 
F. Tipton, Lieutenant, 8th Iowa Cavalry.) 239 

CHAPTER XIV. 
An Adventure. (By F. Murphy, Lieutenant, 94th New York Vol- 
unteers.) • 241 

CHAPTER XV. 
In the Cell at Libbt. (By A. C. Litchfield, Lieutenant Colonel, 
7th Michigan Cavalry.) 257 

CHAPTER XVI. 
Escaped and Recaptured. (By Professor J. Ogden, Lieutenant, 
1st "Wisconsin Cavalry.) 260 

CHAPTER XVII. 
Five Weeks among the Lotal League at Charleston, South 
Carolina. (By W. H. Telford, Captain, 50th Pennsylvania Vet- 
eran Volunteers. ) 296 

CHAPTER XVIII. 
Rebel Barbarities. (From Haj^jer's Weekli/.) 303 



APPENDIX. 

Containing the Name, Rank, Regiment, Date, Place of Capture, and 
Post-office Address of the 1500 Officers who were confined at Co- 
lumbia, South Carolina, 1864 and 1865 ^ 317 



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS. 



1. Tunneling Frontispiece. 

2. Captured Page 16 

3. Fresh Fish 58 

4. Camp Oglethorpe, Macon, (^eorgia 59 

5. Washing 65 

6. Shoulder-straps on Police Duty 67 

7. "Bucked" 71 

8. Filling up the Sinks at Savannah, Georgin 96 

9. Washing — under Difficulties 99 

10. Jail-yard, Charleston, South Carolina 105 

11. Work-house, Charleston, South Carolina 110 

12. Koper Hospital, Charleston, South Carolina 114 

13. Burnt District at Charleston, South Carolina 120 

14. Capture of the Fugitives 130 

15. Hauling Wood, Camp Sorghnm 137 

16. Drawing Meat Ration 147 

17. Shanties, Columbia, South Carolina 148 

18. Asylum Prison, Columbia, South Carolina 153 

19. Dividing Wood 156 

20. Sutler's Establishment 158 

21. Delivering the Mail 163 

20. Skirmishing 185 

23. Passing the Line for Exchange, North Carolina 188 

24. Pursuing Knowledge under Difficulties 271 

25. Recaptured 289 

26-33. Rebel Barbarities 304-313 



SKETCHES OF PEISON LIFE. 



CHAPTER I. 



The .morning of the 8d of May, 1864, was an eventful 
one to the Army of the Potomac ; for on that day began 
the grand movement, which, it was hoped, would finish 
the rebellion. General Grant had been called from his 
victorious Army of the West, placed in command of the 
ill-fated Army of the Potomac, and of all the forces of 
the East. He came with the prestige of a success which 
had an excellent effect upon the soldiers who had been 
BO long trying, but "unsuccessfully, to take Eichmond. 

For nearly five months active preparations had been 
going on in both the Federal and Eebel armies, each de- 
termined to strike a telling blow for its interest ; the one 
for a Nationality and Eepublican institutions, the other 
for an Oligarchy founded upon human slavery. From 
December till May these two armies had confronted each 
other, both picketing the line of the Eapidan and Eap- 
pahannock Eivers, each waiting the signal of settled weath- 
er to begin the forward movement which was to drive 
its foe back upon Eichmond or Washington. The pub- 
lic feeling, both North and South, had been wrought up 



14 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

to its highest pitch. Much confidence was reposed in 
General Grant by the loyal ones, and many prayers as- 
cended daily for him and his noble army. 

My brigade broke camp from the base of Pony Mount- 
ain, near Culpepper, Va., on the morning of the 5th of 
May ; took the Stevensburg Eoad, and encamped at 
night three miles from Germania Ford. The infantry 
had preceded us, and, as is always the case at the com- 
mencement of a spring campaign, the roads were strewn 
with blankets, overcoats, knapsacks, etc., cast off by the 
soldiers to lighten their load. As our train did not come 
up that night, we had to content ourselves with such ra- 
tions as we chanced to have in our haversacks or could 
borrow, not an unusual thing in a campaign. 

We crossed the Eapidan at Ely's Ford by fording, 
the pontoons being used by the infantry and artillery; 
took the old Chancellorsville Eoad, and picketed it for 
three miles beyond Chancellorsville. As we passed over 
the battle-field, I could see very plainly the marks of the 
terrible struggle of last year. The tops of the trees 
looked as though they had been measured and trimmed 
by a skillful hand, while their trunks and limbs were 
scarred and broken. But little of the ^debris of the bat- 
tle remained on the ground, it having been picked up 
and carried off by the inhabitants of the vicinity last 
year, for the benefit of the Eebel government, who made 
a practice of sending out agents to collect all such spoils 
from the inhabitants. This I learned from one of the 
residents near Ely's Ford. 

"We had no fighting to do until Saturday, being kept 
on picket on the Fredericksburg Eoad. On that day 
(the 7th) we were ordered, at 12 M., to Todd's Tavern. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 15 

The weather was intensely hot, and the clouds of dust 
through which we rode almost suffocated us. After a halt 
of a few moments at Todd's Tavern were ordered out on 
the Spottsylvania Koad to discover the position and move- 
ments of the Kebels ; soon found they were advancing 
down the road, supported by two brigades of dismounted 
cavalry, intending, no doubt, to drive us from our pos- 
session of the roads leading to Eichmond, and, if possi- 
ble, thus turn the left flank o'f our army. Colonel Gibbs, 
of the 1st New York Dragoons, who was in command of 
the third brigade, first division, at once comprehended 
thg situation, and ordering the 6th Pennsylvania to dis- 
mount, sent them in on the right of the road, while my 
regiment, Lieutenant Colonel Thorp in command, took 
the left. We at once opened on them with our " seven- 
shooters," and sent their skirmish-line tumbling back to 
their supports. As we charged up a little rise of ground, 
we at once discovered them intrenched behind some 
bushes that hid them from our view. We held our po- 
sition in their front till they brought down five times 
our numbers, when they made a dash on our line, and, 
just as our support was coming in sight, "scooped out" 
six officers and about forty men. I was in a thick piece 
of underbrush, closely watching matters in my front, 
when I heard a shouting behind me, and, as I turned 
round, a Rebel captain confronted me, and, presenting a 
loaded revolver at my breast, said, "Do you surrender?" 
Looking him calmly in the face, after a moment's reflec- 
tion, I replied with a smile, " Of course I do. I don't see 
any sight for any thing else right here." "Give me up 
your sabre, then." I did so, and then the captain ordered 
two men to take 'me to the rear on the double-quick. 



16 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 




Captured. 



"Come out of them boots," said one, as soon as he 
saw that I had on a pair of good ones. " Give up them 
boots." *'I want them ar boots." "You 'Yank,' leave 

them boots." "You d — d son of a , take them boots 

off, or I'll blow your brains out," as he prepared to fulfill 
his threat. Such and like expressions greeted me upon 
my first introduction to Southern chivalry. I kept my 
boots, however, but had to appeal to an officer to save 
them. After the boot question had been settled, they 
turned their attention to arms, and found I had a belt 
and pistol, which they then took from me. They march- 
ed me back about half a mile, where I found Lieuten- 
ants West and Lewis, of my regiment, and soon after 
we were joined by Captain Britton also, 1st Xew York 
Dragoons, Captain Carpenter and Lieuteliant Hazel, of the 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 17 

6tli Pennsylvania. We were tired completely out, had 
had nothing to eat since breakfast, and no immediate 
prospect of getting any thing for some time, and were 
nearly sun-struck. While sitting by a tree, an officer 
rode up to Lieutenant West, and, without saying a word, 
reached down and snatched a good new hat from off his 
(Lieutenant West's) head, put it upon his own, and re- 
placed it by an old worn-out cap, which was so small it 
could with difficulty be kept upon his head at all, and 
then left. While awaiting orders, an officer rode up to 
me, when the following conversation took place between 
us: 

Reb. " What regiment do you belong to?'' 

Fed. "A cavalry regiment, sir.'' 

Reb. " What one ?" 

Fed. " One just over there, sir." 

Reb. {A little nettled). " What is the name of it?" ^ 

Fed. " First New York Dragoons." 

Reb. "Whose division is yours?" 

Fed. " The first, sir." 

Reb. "Who commands it?" 

Fed. "I don't know, sir." 

im. " Where is Wilson's division ?" 

Fed. " I don't know, sir." 

Reb. " Where is Gregg's division ?" 

Fed. "I don't know, sir." 

Reb. "Were we fighting Wilson's division this fore- 
noon?" 

Fed. "I don't know, sir." 

Reb. " What are your folks going to do over there?" 

Fed. "We are going io fight you, sir." 

While we were resting a little while, our people sent 



18 SKETCHES OF PRISOZT LIFE. 

over their compliments in the shape of a shell, which at 
once started us, with our guards, farther to the rear. 

We had not remained there long before we could see 
that the tide of battle had turned, and that our gallant 
boys were driving them. Back they came pell-mell, . 
horses, artillery, and ambulances, drivers and skulkers, 
crying out, " The Yankees are coming — the Yankees are 
coming;" and ice said, "Let them come, for we are not 
afraid of them." 

While moving back, Captain Britton and myself in 
company were overtaken by a Eebel soldier, a mere boy, 
who was greatly excited. Seeing we were Yankees, he 
at once cocked his carbine, and, bringing it to his shoul- 
der, swore that " these two Yanks should pay for the life 
of his brother just slain ;" and, had not the guard inter- 
fered, there is no doubt but that he would have carried 
his threat into execution. 

They marched us back, with their train and lead 
horses, till nearly dark, when we went on ahead to Spott- 
sylvania Court-house, about five miles from the battle- 
field. We halted a few moments in a large field on our 
way, and here, for the first time, we began to comprehend 
our situation. We could hear the sharp firing o#the 
carbines of our own brave comrades, and we hoped that 
soon again we might strike telling blows for our holy 
cause. But this privilege was to be denied us. We were 
no longer to campaign, march, fight, and win glorious 
victories with the " Army of the Potomac." We were 
torn away from them by traitor hands, and were now 
powerless and under their control. With sad hearts and 
bitter tears, we bade "good-by" to our brave comrades 
in the distance, regretting deeply that we could no lons:er 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 19 

sbare their toils and trials, and, as we expected also, their 
triumphs over Lee, and the downfall and capture of Rich- 
mond. 

On our way we saw a rebel bearing one of the guidons 
of my regiment, which had been captured at the same 
time I was. We all noticed it, and kissed our hands to 
it as it passed out of sight, and bade it a long, last " good- 
by." One corporal had been killed, and the second one 
was shot through the arm, when the Rebels wrenched it 
from his hands. 

We arrived at Spottsylvania Court-house soon after 
dark, and, after some delay in trying to find us quarters, 
they turned us out into an old orchard, backed us up 
against a board fence, put a guard around us, and told us 
we would stay there all night. We asked the sergeant 
of the guard who had us in charge for something to eat, 
as we had had nothing since breakfast ; but he very po- 
litely informed us that " they could not get enough to eat 
for themselves," consequently could not divide with pris- 
oners. 

The night was cold and damp, and, as we had no blank- 
ets or extra clothing, the guards built us a small fire out 
of rails. I remarked to them that " they need not be so 
afraid of their rails, for our boys would be along there 
next week, and they would not spare many I was very 
sure." 

"N"o," said Johnny Reb," "you'ens army will never 
come here, and by next Wednesday we will have Grant 
back across the Rapidan." 

After an hour's talk over our condition, we prepared 
for our night's rest ; but the air was too cold and damp 
for us to sleep much, and we welcomed the morning light 



20 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

as the harbinger of warmth, and more comfortable cir- 
cumstances. 

We started at daylight for Guinea's Station, twenty 
miles distant, without a mouthful of breakfast or any 
thing to appease our hunger, having been up to that 
time twenty -four hours without food. As the sun came 
up, the day began to be very hot ; and, being cavalry- 
men, we were not much accustomed to marching on foot, 
our feet soon got sore and we tired out, so that the latter 
part of the distance we could not march over half a mile 
without stopping to rest. The guard marched us very 
fast, would not even allow us to stop at the creeks long- 
enough to wash our faces. We reached the railroad at 
about 12 o'clock, so much exhausted we could not sit 
up, but threw ourselves upon the ground while the ser- 
geant went to get us some rations. After a few mo- 
ments' rest we were ordered on board the train. ^ Soon 
after the sergeant came back and told us that, as it was 
Sunday, he could get nothing for us, but that when the 
train arrived at Hanover Junction rations would be 
put on board for us, and our wants would then be sup- 
plied. 

The train left Guinea's Station at 2 P.M. for Eichmond, 
but no rations did we see at Hanover. As we passed 
Ashland Station, a number of ladies (I suppose they called 
themselves such) came up to the train with delicacies for 
their sick and wounded, and, although we told them how 
long we had been without food, yet not one of them 
deigned to give us a particle, but made up faces at us, 
called us " Yankee thieves," murderers, scoundrels, etc. ; 
and one, more bitter than the others, threw a handful of 
water in our faces, saying, " Take that, you miserable 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 21 

wretches." Some of the old men asked, " What you'ens 
all want to come down here and steal we'ens' farms, and 
run off our niggers, and burn our houses for?" As we 
did not feel in an argumentative mood, I suppose they 
were left in ignorance of the matter. 

We arrived in Elchmond about 4 80 P.M., just as the 
churches were out. The streets were filled with people, 
whose countenances betokened anxious hearts in regard 
to the terrible struggle that was then going on in the Wil- 
derness. As we were the first prisoners sent to Kich- 
mond from the Wilderness, I suppose we were regarded 
with unusual interest. Guards were at once placed around 
us, with orders to allow no one outside to hold any inter- 
course with us. They marched us first to General Win- 
der's office, detained us a few moments while a gaping 
crowd satisfied their curiosity, and then we passed on 
through some of the principal streets of the city. As we 
marched along we could hear the doors and windows 
open around us, while men, women, and children looked 
out upon us as Yankee prisoners. A troop of boys fol- 
lowed in our rear, hooting, hallooing, and calling us names. 

After a walk of a mile or more we came up before a 
large three-story brick building, dark and frowning, and 
from the corner of which hung an old weather-beaten 
sign, " Libby & Son, Ship-chandlers." All at once I com- 
prehended the fact that this was the r?zfamous "Libby 
Prison," and we were to be confined in it as prisoners of 
war. I confess I did not like the idea of being a "ship- 
chandler" so far from home, but their arguments were too 
powerful, and we all entered the prison Sabbath, May 
8th, 1864, to come out when — Ah ! that was an interest- 
ing question to us. 



22 SKETCHES OF PHISON LIFE. 



CHAPTER 11. 

IN LIBBY PRISCrN". 

As soon as we were inside the ^^rison the officers were 
separated from the enlisted men, and we were not per- 
mitted after that to be near enough to them to hold any 
conversation with them. We were then marched into 
the office of the prison, where were registered our names, 
rank, company, and regiment, when and where captured. 
While waiting for my turn, I looked around the office, 
and through an open door in the rear I saw the battle- 
flag of the 25th Missouri, filled with bullet-holes and 
stained with blood. I gazed upon it with intense inter- 
est, for I thought it might be a long time before I should 
again see the "dear old flag" that I had followed for near- 
ly two years, and for which so many precious lives had 
been given. My eyes filled with tears as I looked upon 
it, and, as I marched out of the office, I said to myself, 
" Good-by, old flag, till I see you again." We were then 
taken into the hall in the rear of the prison, and were po- 
litely requested to give up all the United States money 
we had in our possession. If we gave it up voluntarily 
they would keep it for us, and perhaps we might get it 
again, and perhaps not. If they searched and found it 
upon us, they would confiscate it. We gave it np at 
once, when they ordered us to strip for a search, which 
we did, and they went through us till they were satisfied. 
The sergeant then led the way, and we followed to the 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 23 

third story of the building, and, taking us to the north- 
east corner of the upper west room, told us " that place 
would be our quarters for the present." We then asked 
him for some rations, as it had been thirty -six hours since 
we had eaten any thing. He politely informed us " that 
it was past prison ration hours, and we would have to 
wait till next day." He then left us "alone in our glory." 
One remarked, " Well,, boys, we are 7ie?'e," to which we 
all replied "we thought that was so beyond a doubt." 
"What are we to do?" said another. ^^ Stay liere^''^ re- 
plied the third ; and then we began to look around to see 
what we could find. 

We had expected to find in prison some of the conven- 
iences of a soldier's camp life, but we were sadly mistaken. 
We found not, in all the prison, a bunk, table, blankets, 
conveniences for eating, or any thing of the kind. Bare 
walls and a wet floor greeted us whichever way we 
looked. 

The eight hundred Federal officers who had been con- 
fined there during the winter had, on the 7th inst., been 
sent to Georgia. The order that came to them the night 
before was to prepare to march twenty miles, to Peters- 
burg. It was subsequently shown that the order was 
thus given, not because they were actually to march that 
distance, but because it would oblige the Rebel officers^ if 
the prisoners had to leave behind a large quantity of the 
delicacies that they had received a short time before by 
" flag-of- truce boat" from kind friends at the N'orth. But 
the Yankees were too sharp for them, for, upon consulta- 
tion, it was decided to destroy what they could not car- 
ry. Accordingly, coffee, sugar, flour, butter, lard, soap, 
candles, tobacco, ham, every thing they had, was broken 



24 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

up, cut up, feather and cotton j)illows ripped open and 
contents scattered over them, and then the whole trodden 
under foot. The bunks and benches they had made of 
their boxes were also destroyed, thrown in a pile, and, 
when they left the next morning, some venturesome fel- 
low, not having the fear of Major Turner or the Eebel 
authorities before his eyes, set the pile on fire, but, u7ifoY- 
tunately, it was discovered in time to save the building 
from any material damage. 

'' Libby Prison" takes its name from its former owner, 
who carried on the ship-chandler and tobacco business in 
it. It is located in that part of the city known as the 
Eocketts, it being in the southeast corner, on the.bank of 
the "James Kiver Canal," near the James Eiver. From, 
its windows we could look out across the river and see 
the green fields, leafy forests, and the beautiful summer 
residences of Manchester, a small village opposite Eich- 
mond. 

The prison stands on such ground that it has three 
stories front and four in the rear. It is about 130 feet in 
length and 100 in width, built of brick, and contains six 
rooms, each 40 by 100 feet. The partitions are of brick, 
two feet thick. The lower west room is partitioned off « 
and used for ofS.ces to the prison. The lower middle 
room was furnished with stoves, and was used for a kitch- 
en. In one corner of this kitchen was a room or cell, in 
which were confined " General Kilpatrick's raiders."^ 

The lower east room was the prison hospital. The 

sashes from all the windows had been removed, and the 

places supplied by grates made of one-inch rods of iron, 

passing through three cross-bars, two and a half by three 

* See Colonel Litchfield's experience. 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 25 

fourth inches ; the whole firmly imbedded in the walls. 
A flight of stairs led from each room to the one above, 
but at night those leading to the lower story were taken 
down, and sentinels were stationed to prevent any at- 
tempt to escape that way. A hydrant in each room sup- 
plied us with water from the river, and an apology for a 
bath-tub was placed in each for our use. A line of 
guards were stationed around the outside of the prison, 
with orders to shoot any who approached the windows 
from the inside. It was not an uncommon occurrence 
for them to send up a bullet to us when one ventured 
near to get a breath of fresh air. 

It is generally known that Brigadier General Winder 
was Commissary General of Prisons, and we were under 
him, but the immediate command of the prison devolved 
upon Major Turner, one of Winder's pets. Dick Turner, 
a cousin of the major's, had the control of the inside of 
the prison, kept the records, counted us, issued orders 
governing us, acted as sutler, and robbed the officers 
generally, so far as he could do it, under any pretense 
whatever. I think he was one of the smoothest and 
most polished villains I have ever known. Several 
times I sent out money by him to purchase articles, and 
he usually kept any change that might be due, without 
even saying it was to pay charges. 

Our rations while in "Libby" consisted of corn bread, 
beans, or cow pease, or, in lieu thereof, rice and bacon. 
The bread was made of unsifted meal mixed with water, 
without salt, and baked in cards of twelve loaves ; each 
loaf being two and a half inches square by two inches 
thick, a single loaf constituting a ration. The beans 
were small, red or black, a little larger than a pea, with 

B 



26 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

a tough skin, a strong bitter taste, emitting a flavor very 
much like an old blue dye-tub. It was almost impossi- 
ble for one to eat them at first^ but hunger soon brought 
us to it. Those we got while in " Libby" were general- 
ly filled with black bugs which had eaten out the inside 
and then died. It was not an uncommon thing to see 
the pail of soup they brought up to *us with the top spot- 
ted over with their cooked carcasses. When we got ba- 
con, it was strong, rancid, and maggoty, and we received 
about two ounces per day. We had been there about 
a week before we received any meat, and when they 
brought in this, we were so rejoiced to get it that we 
gave it a hearty welcome. 

We were put upon half rations as soon as we arrived, 
and before we left were reduced to quarter rations. Dr. 
Ferguson, of the 8th Kew York Cavalry, who was with 
us a short time, gave it as his opinion, that "the quan- 
tity of food we received there was not sufiicient to keep 
one in good health." We were very hungry all the 
time, and often, when the bread came in on the wheel- 
barrow, did we crowd around it to snatch the crumbs 
that might chance to fall from it. What we did get was 
usually eaten at once, and then we went without till the 
next day. Before we left, some officers came in who 
were fortuaate enough to have saved some of their mon- 
ey, and enlisting the services of the negroes who came in 
to sweep and mop the floors, managed to get something 
"exW to eat. They allowed us papers, provided we 
would pay for them in advance ; yet they had taken all 
our money from us, and there was little prospect of our 
getting it back, but we managed to get a paper somehow 
every day. 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 27 

During the first week of our stay in " Libby," we were 
much elated at the prospect of Sheridan with his cavalry 
coming into the city and taking us out. Thursday 
morning, May 12th, we got the ^^ Examiner ^''^ and from its 
editorial news column we learned that Sheridan was in- 
deed near the city,, with a good prospect of capturing it. 
The authorities were very much alarmed, for the gov- 
ernor issued at daylight the following address : 

"To the citizens of the state and people of Richmond : 
"The enemy are "undoubtedly approaching the city, 
and may be expected at any hour, with a view to its cap- 
ture, its pillage, and its destruction. The strongest con- 
siderations of self and duty to the counfry call every 
man to arms — a duty which none can refuse without dis- 
honor. All persons, therefore, able to wield a musket 
will immediately assemble upon the public square, where 
a regiment will be found in arms, and around which all 
can rally, and where the required direction will be given 
for arming and equipping those who respond to the call. 
" The governor confidently relies that this appeal will 
not be made in vain. 

" Wm. Smith, Governor of Virginia." 

Upon this the ''^Examiner'''' remarked editorially as fol- 
lows, viz. : 

"Nor was the appeal in vain. In a short time the 
entire arms-bearing population of Eichmond turned out, 
and repaired to the capitol square, where they awaited 
information from the enemy before they should march 
to the field. In a few hours came the following dispatch 
from General Stuart, at Ashland : 



28 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

" 'Headquarters, Ashland, May 11th, 1864, 6 30 A.M. 
" ' To General Bragg : 

" 'General, — The enemy readied tliis point just be- 
fore US, but were promptly whipped out, after a sharp 
fight, by Fitz Lee's advance, killing and capturing quite 
a number. General Gordon is in the rear of the enemy. 
I intersect the road the enemy is marching on at Yellow 
Tavern, the head of the turnpike, six miles from Eich- 
mond. My men and horses are tired, hungry, and jaded, 
but all right. J. E. B. Stuart.' 

"Sheridan within six miles of Richmond, and pressing 

on ! I" 

When we*read that, and saw the commotion in the 
streets — troops marching each way ; a citizen guard put 
around the prison ; officials of the prison looking sour 
and cross — we rejoiced over the prospect. "Will he 
come ?" " Will he succeed in capturing the hated city ?" 
passed from lip to lip, and, with intense anxiety, we wait- 
ed for farther developments ; at the same time we could 
hear the booming of Butler's guns — all of which served 
to keep us excited, and to while away the lonely hours 
of prison life. So great was our anxiety concerning the 
situation we could scarcely sleep, and when we got a 
morning paper, nothing was done till it was read aloud 
to all. There was about the prison a force of about 
twenty negroes, the most of whom had been free in the 
North; had entered the service as waiters for ofiicers, 
and had been captured, and were kept to do the dirty 
work of the prison. These were always our friends, and 
kept us posted as to the situation, so far as they were 
able. Sometimes the rumors they brought us were of 



SKETCHES OF PRISOX LIFE. 29 

the wildest kind, but in the main they were more or less 
correct. The next day after this stir in the city they 
were more excited by the news of a raid upon the Dan- 
ville Eailroad by General Kautz and Colonel Spear. 
The ^'- Examiner^ thus whistled to keep its courage up : 

"The situation is unchanged. The sai"d situation is 
that precise state of things which has been predicted in 
this journal repeatedly during the last four months. The 
enemy is making a most determined effort to capture 
Eichmond, and is employing extraordinary means to ac- 
complish that purpose. They have collected several ar- 
mies of the largest size known in modern times, and set 
them in motion from different points to attack this city, 
with peremptory injunctions to the generals that they do 
not return unless the main order is accomplished. To 
do this, every other enterprise has been abandoned. 
Since the commencement of the year, troops have been 
in motion toward Yirginia from every corner of the 
United States. * * * 

"If Eichmond stands the storm, the whole military 
power of the United States is beaten, and the war is vir- 
tually ended. Perhaps the Confederate government has 
not been alive to the extent and reality of the grand 
fact; but nothing has been lost, and all will turn out 
well if it is never infected with the spirit of panic which 
seized upon the Southern Congress and Southern Execu- 
tive when the true nature of the similar, though less dan- 
gerous crisis of 1862 became slowly palpable. Eich- 
mond is in no real danger so long as the authorities keep 
their heads and hold their hearts firm. 

"In 1862, Congress adjourned at the first appearance 
of danger. Their last sessions were secret, and a bad ru- 



80 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

mor grew out of them, that they had been discussing a 
law to change the seat of government. Then commenced 
the irresolution of the executive. Congress adjourned 
on the 21st of April. On the 27th arrived the news of 
the fall of New Orleans ; on May 6th Yorktown was 
evacuated ; on the 11th Norfolk was deserted, and then 
the Merrimac was blown up. What followed is well re- 
membered. The departments were all moved ; the fam- 
ilies of members of the government, with all their house- 
hold goods, followed ; and the train was kept in readi- 
ness for the government itself Had it gone, the South- 
ern Confederacy would now be not only non extant^ but 
forgotten. * * * " 

" It is hoped that the recollection of these things will 
prevent the recurrence of some incidents in the history 
of these times. The Confederate authorities were inex- 
perienced then, they are not so now. Tliey know now 
where lies the true road to safety. They have vast forces 
at their command. The enemy, powerful indeed, has 
been firmly held at bay for a week, and can be kept back 
at bay for weeks more by the magnificent troops and 
splendid officers in the front. Time, fixed resolution, 
and energetic action by the central authorities, are all 
that the occasion requires to render Virginia the grave 
of those armies which now menace her capital. -^^ * * 

" The aim of the enemy in the neighborhood of Eich- 
mond is evidently to cut the railroads ; but, even if they 
succeed, the effect will be temporary and trivial. Cavalry 
can not stay, and roads can be repaired." 

The first intelligence from the "Army of Northern 
Virginia" was received in an " extra" from the office of 
the ^^ Enquirer j^^ headed as follows, in leaded capitals : 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 31 

" Latest from General Lee's Army ! ! ! 

"Our Troops Victorious ! ! ! 

" Great Slaughter of the Enemy ! ! ! 

" Saturday, May 14th, 2 P.M.,) 
Guinea's Station, May 12th. ) 

"Very little of interest transpired yesterday. Heavy 
skirmishing occurred at intervals during the whole of 
last night. This morning at daylight, the enemy, having 
massed heavy forces in front of Johnson's division, made 
a most vigorous assault upon Jones's brigade. For a 
while our line of battle was broken, and the enemy 
pressed over our breast-works, gaining possession of sev- 
eral pieces of artillery, and capturing a number of pris- 
oners.* 

"Forces were quickly sent to the relief of those thus 
engaged, and the enemy was driven back. 

"About 10 o'clock this morning, the enemy made 
most vigorous and repeated assaults upon Field's divi- 
sion, but were driven back with great slaughter. At 2 
P.M. the enemy are making a most desperate fight in 
Ewell's front, but all accounts agree that we are driving 
them back and punishing them with great slaughter. 
The musketry firing to-day was the heaviest of the war. 

" The battle has extended along the whole line to-day, 
and has been fought by the Yankees with more vim and 
bravery than any other fought on Virginia soil. We cap- 
tured 2000 of the enemy's wounded, left by them at the 
Wilderness. Yankee papers of the 7th instant contain 
letters written from Grant's head-quarters acknowledging 
a loss of 20,000 men^in the Wilderness fight. Yankee 

* Their account of the capture of Johnson's division by the 6th and 
9th Corps. 



32 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

prisoners say General Grant is putting fresh troops in the 
fight to-day. At 2 o'clock severe and continuous fight- 
ing has occurred all along our lines, but had every where 
been repulsed, and, in some cases, we have driven the ene- 
my before us. ^ ^ "^ 

"Our men are buoyant and resolute, and we have 
achieved grand results, but the enemy are still pressing 
the battle with desperation. Our loss to-day is not heavy, 
as we have been fighting mostly behind breast-works. 
The enemy are fighting in the open field, and their loss 
must be terrible. Hill's whole corps has been engaged 
all day recovering, in some instances, the ground lost by 
other troops ; and Mahone's and Law's brigade, about 2 
o'clock, made a most gallant charge, capturing about SOO 
prisoners, and a number of stand of colors. 

" Second Dispatch I 

"Battle-field, Spottsylvania Court-house, "> 
May 13th, via Guinea's Station, May 14th. I 

" The battle yesterday lasted all day and late into last 
night. Our men, after a temporary repose in front of 
Johnson's division, successfully resisted every onset of 
the enemy, who repeatedly assaulted our lines with troops 
massed in, as some say, as many as ten columns deep. 
Our boys stood nobly to their work, piling the enemy's 
dead thickly before our breast-works. The lowest esti- 
mate of the enemy's loss in the battle of yesterday is 
20,000. These figures are corroborated by a Yankee 
colonel wounded and in our hands. Our losses are esti- 
mated at 2000. There was continuous fighting for ten 
hours on one point yesterday, and so severe was the mus- 
ketry fire that trees were cut down by it. Prisoners say 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 83 

that General Grant expressed a determination not to re- 
cross the river while he has a man left. 

" Oar troops fought yesterday with more than usual 
braver}^ and gallantry, and the enemy fought more stub- 
bornly than ever. Our men are as resolute as ever, 
^while accounts from the Yankee side show that their 
troops are growing dispirited." 

The following article I copy from the ^^ Uxaminer'^ of 
May 16th, to show their appreciation of General Grant's 
tactics, and their manner of figuring up our losses. In 
speaking of the battle of the 12th instant, it says : 

"Grant had received a full corps of fresh troops, kept 
back up to that moment to defend the trenches of Wash- 
ington, and risked, with the recklessness of a true gam- 
bler, on the cast of a die. He attempted no manoeuvre, 
he relied on main strength, bringing up his ten lines at a 
run, each one close behind another, and dashed them, 
like the waves of the sea against the rocks, on the breast- 
works of the South. 

" By these tactics, either a perfect victory is won or an 
attacking army is lost. The first rush was successful on 
one point. The enemy broke through the blaze of the 
living volcano upon Johnson's men, leaped the works, 
took 2000 men and 10 guns. But reserves were ready, 
and a charge of greater fary than their own drove them 
out in brief time. On all other parts of the line they were 
entirely unsuccessful; they were utterly fepulsed! with 
scarcely any loss to the Confederates, who fired with the 
advantages of rest, aim, and cover, but with a slaughter 
of the foe which is represented by universal testimony 
to have been the most terrible of modern warfare. 

B2 



34 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

" In these two battles the Army of ISTortliern Yirginia 
has enjoyed the advantage of firing into the enemy with 
grape and rifle -balls from lines of substantial breast- 
works ; and, if one may judge from the high spirits and 
unbounded confidence of the wounded who have come to 
this city from the battle, it has been highly gratified hy^ 
the new position. ' We just mowed them every time.' 
Such is the only account they give of the struggle. 

" The Confederate loss, killed, wounded, and missing, 
in all these battles, beginning with the Wilderness, and 
including that of last Thursday at Spottsylvania Court- 
house, was under 15,000. The Washington Chronicle, the 
organ of Lincoln, that sees all these things in the rose's 
color, announces the depletion of Grant's army, by the 
battle of the Wilderness and ' other causes,' to have been 
on Tuesday evening ascertained at 85,000. To this aw- 
ful figure must now be added the two days of unsuccess- 
ful assault on the breast- works of Spottsylvania — assault 
without manoeuvre, full in front, with deep columns, each 
forcing the other on the muzzle of the guns, wherein 
the carnage and the loss must, in the necessity of things, 
have been many times greater than in the open battles of 
the Wilderness and succeeding days. Putting the two 
data together, it is impossible to doubt the deduction 
that Grant's depletion by killing, wounding, and ' other 
causes' — that is to say, by straggling, desertion, etc., has 
surpassed 70,000. * " "^ 

"Nevertheless, we have no idea that Lee and Grant 
have yet settled their accounts in full. Grant will get 
up the last rakings of the Northern army, and try again. 
He is said to have made every body about him under- 
stand that he will not recross the river while he has a 
living man under his orders. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 85 

'^ There are butchers of humanity, to whom the sight 
of their fellow-creatures' blood affords an intoxicating 
pleasure. They are indifferent whose blood it is, so it 
does not come from their veins. And Grant is one of 
those charming individuals. His government and his 
generals will not balk him in the present instance. A 
large part of the army now in his hands is composed of 
the regiments enlisted for three years, and their time ex- 
pires in this coming summer. They have resisted every 
inducement to re-enlist, and have formally notified the 
Secretary of War that they will obey orders so long as 
they are legally given, hut no longer. The government 
is entirely willing that Grant should save it the trouble 
and mortification of giving the discharge to these veter- 
ans. He ivill use them, and he is using them." 

Such was the news^ the kind of lying trash we had to 
read from one of the leading journals of the capital of the 
Southern Confederacy. 

Begging pardon of my readers for. copying so much, I 
wish to show them one more article from this same pa- 
per, and, read in the light of the developments from the 
time it was written to the present. May, 1865, it proves 
just what it says: They hate the Northern people. It is 
entitled " The Price of Liberty J^ 

'' The Yankee warfare is becoming desperate. The 
press reports from North Georgia declare that, in their 
advance through the country, they levy contributions as 
they march, and burn all the mills, factories, and resi- 
dences. One can imagine the devastation. What steal- 
ing of spoons and forks ; what chopping of pianos ; what 
burning of libraries, appropriating of pictures and wear- 
ing apparel ; women taking shelter, cowering and shiv- 



So SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

ering in the woods, with their homeless little ones, and 
looking out from their covert upon the blazing roof-trees 
of their own houses. 

" Such is the great feature of this campaign every loliere. 
On the Peninsula also, and on either bank of the York 
and James Eivers, destruction of private property and 
outrages upon peaceful citizens have been reduced to a 
more perfect system than ever before ; and the constant 
employment of negroes in these operations of war has 
given them an additional character of brutal ferocity 
which is grateful to the Yankee soul in its present mood. 
Seeing that they can not subjugate the South, they mean 
to make it a desert, and a wilderness of ruins and ashes. 
They are happy in the thought that they can revenge the 
slaughter of their troops in open battle by torturing the 
unarmed and helpless people along their line of march. 
If they can not trust their negro brigands to figlit^ they 
can at least trust them to burn, murder, crucify, and rav- 
ish. This we call desperation. It must be they have 
given up all hope of conquering these Confederate States, 
and that, feeling the effort is a failure, their malignant 
hearts can devise nothing better than to hurt and harm 
us to the utmost extent in their power, and make our 
independence cost us dear. And the cost is the very 
bitterest we could be called on to pay — the agonies and 
terrors of our unprotected people. If it be any pleasure 
or glory to them, we may freely avow that we have been 
deeply hurt in our affections and in our pride, on the 
continually recurring tale of our noble and devoted peo- 
ple, subjected to the brutal atrocities of that offscouring 
of creation which makes up the Yankee armies. It is sad 
enough to have our people burned out and pillaged, our 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 37 

women bullied and insulted, but it is doubly humiliating 
to suffer such evils at the hands of a people we have al- 
ways despised. It does, indeed, cost us heavily to rid our- 
selves of all connection with the Yankee nation ; but then 
this riddance is worth the cost, and perhaps we should 
never have set the right value upon the independence we 
fight for, if it had not cost us so dear. We might never 
have been so fully and deeply conscious of the great ne- 
cessity that was upon us, for our honor and our children's 
well being, to cut off that abandoned nation from our so- 
ciety, if it had not been permitted to develop and display, 
at so many points, and for so long a time, all the dark 
depths of its hateful character — all its dastard cruelty, 
and mean thievery, and unparalleled fertility of falsehood. 

" Wow we know fully from what a rotten carcass we 
have cut ourselves loose ; and, to escape its pollution, no 
price is too great. 

" Eather than submit to that foul embrace again, we 
would bid higher, and still higher, until nothing was left 
to the few survivors of us but bare life. 

"In this sense, we may almost be said to be under 
some sort of obligation to the Yankee nation. It has 
more than justified our secession, and has left in the re- 
gions of our country which have once fallen within its 
military lines certain bitter and burning memories, which, 
in ages to come, will cause mothers to teach their little 
children to thank God in their nightly praj^ers for the 
rescue of their native land out of the clutches of an evil 
generation. The many unmistakable symptoms of des- 
peration visible in this year's campaign ; the employ- 
ment of Grant himself with absolute dictatorial powers, 
because he was known to be the man who would either 



38 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

effect his purpose or throw away his army, the insane 
drunkenness with which he drowned the senses of his 
troops before he hurled them against the muzzles of 
Confederate cannon, the reckless and unsparing ferocity 
with which quiet country places are devastated, and cov- 
ered with smoking ruins, and soaked with the blood of 
unresisting people; all these things ought to encourage 
us. They consist well with what the enemy's public 
press has plainly avowed, that if the grand combined 
movement of '64 should fail, then all was lost; that 
armies could no longer be raised to continue the inva- 
sion, that anarchy and financial ruin would break up 
their whole social system, and that the United States 
would be no more a nation ! 

" And that campaign, may we not already say, HAS 
failed ; its force is expended and broken. Of its four 
grand armies, one in the Trans-Mississippi is no longer 
an army ; another at Bermuda Hundreds has no care 
save to protect itself from destruction ; in front, by in- 
trenchments ; in rear, by a fleet. The two other armies, 
and the two greatest, have advanced indeed, with tre- 
mendous waste of men and material, to the points at 
which Lee and Johnston, at the head of fresh and eager 
troops, say to them, ' No farther hitherto shalt thou go !' 

"All the elan^ all the drunken vigor of the "opening 
campaign is gone ; the pluck is taken out of it, and the 
invincible Yankee hosts, or what is left of them, can do 
no better than to turn upon the already plundered popu- 
lation in their rear, rob a few houses, ravish a few wom- 
en, crucify a few ''secesK planters, and go home. * * * 

" On the whole, we can afford to make the rogues 
welcome to all the profits they have got out of their in- 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 39 

vasion, especially as with the last day of the campaign, 
our cost ends and theirs begins. Nations, having no fu- 
ture state, always expiate their crimes in this world, and 
no nation ever run up such an account of crime, or so 
richly deserved a hell upon earth. 'There shall be 
weeping and gnashing of teeth.' " 

In keeping with the above is the following, clipped 
from the same paper of March, 1864 : 

"Goodies for the Ghouls. 

" The last ' flag-of-truce boat' brought up several tons 
of precious freight for the prisoners confined at ' Libby' 
and Americus, Ga. 

" Boxes of fine raiment for the scabs and riff-raff of 
Germany and the North ; hampers of cured meats and 
delicacies for the blue-bellied and gold-braided officers 
who commanded the '■scats.'' The Confederate govern- 
ment is the consignee, and the United States government 
the consignor. Happy commercial relation ! At the 
time these boxes were being gingerly handled by the of&- 
cial stevedores at City Point, unclean hands were plunder- 
ing the boxes sent to our poor prisoners at Point Look- 
out and other places. At the same time a portion of 
the vandal horde were rearing and pitching over the 
unprotected portions of the Confederacy, burning mills, 
houses, barns, destroying property, stealing horses, and in- 
sulting God and man by their high-handed deviltry and 
outlandish vandalism.^ Truly we are a Christian peo- 
ple, and our rulers the most exemplary of all the earth." 

About 10 o'clock this forenoon we had a large re- 

* Kilpatrick's raid. 



40 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

enforcement to our number. Hearing an unusual noise 
in tlie street, while one watched for the guard, anoth- 
er determined to look out of the window and learn its 
cause. Soon he reported that a long row of officers and 
men had just come in. The officers were soon sent up 
to us, numbering twenty-one, among them a brigadier 
general. We were all driven into the middle and east 
rooms, and the doors connected with the west rooms nailed 
up, and the enlisted men were confined there. From 
these officers we learned that Grant had not been whipped 
as badly as the Kebel papers represented, but was still 
on the move toward Eichmond. 

The armies seemed to be in good spirits, and confident 
of final success. Even the prisoners were jubilant, for 
soon after being put into "Libby" they began to sing 
" Eally round the flag" and other patriotic pieces. From 
these officers also we obtained two Northern papers, 
the " Baltimore American^^^ of the 14th inst., and the 
" Springfielct RepuUican.^'' We read and reread them 
with interest, till there was nothing left of them. Upon 
the arrival of these " boarders," it was found necessary 
to divide ourselves into messes^ which we did at once. I 
was appointed commissary of the prison inside, and my 
duties consisted in bringing up stairs the corn bread, 
beans, rice, and whatever we had to eat, and then divid- 
ing it, giving each his portion. When these twenty-one 
came in, they did not issue them any thing to eat till the 
next day. We divided our little all with them, and 
went without supper and breakfast till we drew again. 
And this was common ; for often prisoners would be 
brought in after having been marched twenty-five or 
thirty miles without any thing to eat, and then kept 
twenty-four hours more without receiving rations. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 41 

About this time the Rebel commissary informed me 
that we could draw our rations raw if we chose, and cook 
them on the stoves in the kitchen below. We concluded 
to try the rice and beans raw, and let them bake the 
bread. I experimented all one day in trying to cook a 
mess of the beans, and make them fit to eat. I first 
looked them over very carefully, throwing out the " bug- 
gy" ones, which took over one half I then washed them 
three times, boiled them, pouring off the water as many 
more times, and yet, when done, they were about as bad 
as ever. The water, or soup, was thick, strong, and al- 
most black; very unpleasant to smell, much more so to 
eat. I concluded to give up the beans till I was starved 
more than I yet had been. Daily we found our strength 
failing, for we were hungry, hungry^ hungry all the 
while. ,„We had no lights in the prison, and, consequent- 
ly, we retired soon after dark, and often you would hear 
one in the morning tell of his dream of home and plenty, 
which, alas ! was all a dream. 

jAbout a week after this, in the kindness of their hearts, 
they brought up to us some old lousy pieces of blankets, 
rusty tin plates, and a few old knives and forks, or pieces 
of them, articles left by the other officers. We were glad 
to get even these, for we had been eating with our fingers, 
and bits of sticks, or any thing we could find, and sleep- 
ing on the bare floor. A few days before we left, they 
gave us a little bacon in lieu of the beans. So rejoiced 
were we to get it, we paid our respects to it by giving it 
hearty cheers, maggoty and rancid though it was. Dick 
Turner promised us the use of our money nearly every 
day, but not a dollar of it could we get. It seems that 
they cared little for our comfort or convenience, and tried 
to fret and annoy us in all the ways they possibly could. 



42 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



CHAPTER III. 

FR0:M RICHMOND TO MACON. 

On the mornin^^ of the 81st of May we were aroused 
at 5 o'clock by the sergeant, and ordered to get ready to 
go South at once. We had barely time to roll up our 
blankets when the drum sounded, and we were ordered 
to fall in and march down stairs in single file. As we 
passed out of the front door of the middle room we each 
received half a loaf of corn bread, and a slice of bacon 
one fourth of an inch thick and one and one half inches 
square, for a day's ration. 

I had been an inmate of "Libby" but three weeks; 
yet when my feet struck the pavement I nearly fell, and 
many of those who had been confined there six or eight 
months could scarcely stand when they first reached the 
ground. 

On both sides of the street was formed the guard, 
standing about five paces apart, who were to go with us 
to Danville. There were at this time but sixty-two offi- 
cers in Libby, and one of these, who was too sick to ac- 
company us, was left behind and sent to the hospital. 

While waiting for orders to march, they brought up in 
the rear of our column 700 enlisted men, who were to go 
on the same train with us. They marched us over the 
James Eiver to Manchester, and halted us alongside of 
the Danville Railroad, made up a train of box-cars and 
loaded us in, putting forty enlisted men in a car ; but to 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 43 

the oiSicers tliey were a little more generous, giving us 
two cars. They were very filthy, and had no seats or 
any thing for us to sit on, yet we got along very com- 
fortably. Before we left we could hear the dull, heavy 
thunder of Grant's guns, and knew he was not far from 
the city ; and we interpreted the move as one to place 
us in a safer prison. We had not been in Libby forty- 
eight hours before they began to talk " exchange^'' to us ; 
and when we spoke of sending for boxes, they told us 
we would not be, prisoners long enough to receive them. 

When we found we were to go South our hearts sunk 
within us, for it seemed to us that we were going beyond 
the reach of " exchange ; but there was no help for it, 
and here we were on our way. We had an opportunity 
to see some of the enlisted men who had spent the win- 
ter on Belle Isle. They looked as though they had had 
a hard time to live, for they were pale and sickly look- 
ing, and very many of them, from long suffering with the 
chronic diarrhoea, were so weak that they could scarcely 
walk. 

The weather was intensely hot, and the guards would 
allow but one of the car doors open at a time ; so these 
poor, and many of them sick men, had to ride for twelve 
hours, suffering for the pure air of heaven ; but this was 
only the beginning of sorrows. 

When we parted from our Libby Prison officials, they 
promised that our money, boxes, and letters should all 
be sent through to us with as little delay as possible. 
How well they kept their word the sequel will show. 

We left Manchester at 7 30 A.M., the 31st of June, 
just as the battle of Cold Harbor was opening. We soon 
found that traveling on a Eebel railroad was very differ- 



44 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

ent from what it would be on one in our Northern States. 
Their rolling stock was nearly worn out, the rails broken, 
splintered, and battered, the ties rotten, and, altogether, it 
was a dangerous matter to ride at all upon them, to say 
nothing of speed. For greater safety, their fastest trains 
were limited to twelve miles an hour by Act of Congress. 
Their stops are frequent, for their wheezy old engines use 
double the fuel they would if they were in good repair ; 
and their wood and water stations are separate, thus mak- 
ing a stop every four or five miles. 

During this ride we suffered for water, for the day was 
intensely hot, and we had nothing to get it in, but had to 
drink it from our hands or from the holes by the side of 
the track. The stations along this route are not villages 
such as you find on our Northern roads, but consist of 
five or six houses dignified with a name high sounding 
enough for a corporation. The depots are small, unpaint- 
ed buildings, with but few conveniences and much dilap- 
idation. 

About twenty miles from Eichmond we passed the 
scene of Kautz's and Spear's raid. The track had been 
repaired, but tanks, depots, and wood-piles were wanting. 
While waiting a few moments, I politely inquired of a 
gentleman standing by the name of the place. 

" Coal Fields, sir," he replied. 

"Ah, indeed! this is near the place of Kautz's raid a 
few days since," I said. 

{Reluctantly speaking)^ "Yes; but I guess some of his 
rascals won't raid it any more." 

"Grant is raiding it noiv^^^ said I, "in front of Eich- 
mond ; we heard his guns this morning as we left the 
city." 



SKETCHES OF PEISON LIFE. 45 

" Well," he said, " he never can take Eichmond if — " 

^^Baa! haar from a hundred voices as the train moved 
off. 

The country through which we passed was very poor, 
the cultivated portions of it being planted to corn by the 
negroes. Here we saw the practical benefit of the Eman- 
cipation Proclamation. Yery few white men were to be 
seen. The negroes were the power that supplied the 
Eebel armies with food, and our noble Presideoit reason- 
ed well when he proposed to cripple them by inducing 
this class to run away from the South. 

We obtained a little relief from the oppressive heat in 
the cars by kicking off some of the boards, thus letting in 
fresh air. 

We arrived at Danville about one o'clock the next 
(Wednesday) morning. We were not allowed to leave 
the train till seven, when we were marched to another 
train in waiting to take us to Greensboro', North Caro- 
lina. After we were on board they issued to us half a 
loaf of corn bread warm from the oven, and a small piece 
of cooked bacon, in quality much better than any we had 
ever received at Libby. Here our old guard was relieved 
by some Virginia militia under command of Lieutenant 
Gay, 3d Virginia Infantry (Hampton's Legion). 

Danville is situated on the south side of the Dan Elv- 
er, one hundred and forty-eight miles from Eichmond, 
and had at this time a population of about five thousand. 
It had increased in numbers since the war, many of the 
refugees from Northern Virginia coming here with their 
families to escape from the immediate, horrors of the bat- 
tle-field. It had several government hospitals, and at 
times Federal prisoners have been confined here, but at 



46 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

this time nearly all had been sent farther South. It was 
also a depot for supplies in transitu from Georgia and 
North Carolma. 

The road connecting Danville with Greensboro' is a 
new one, built in 1863, '4, by the Kebel government, and 
we were among the first that went over it. The train 
did not make over eight miles per hour. We met sev- 
eral negroes, who said they were on their way to Eich- 
mond to work on the fortifications. They were on foot, 
and carried whatever they had in bags or packs on their 
backs. 

We arrived at Greensboro' about 1 o'clock P.M., and 
were ordered from the train and marched to a little grove 
to rest and wait for a train to be made up for us. As 
soon as we were bivouacked there began a sharp business 
in trading. Some of the inhabitants came around with 
something to eat. Our rations received at Danville were 
barely sufficient for a single meal, "and the sight made us 
very hungry. Watches, knives, rings, jewelry, pocket- 
books, any thing that could be spared, was sold for ra- 
tions. We paid for onions five dollars per half dozen, 
scallions at that ; bacon, four dollars per pound ; crack- 
ers, homemade, two dollars per dozen ; biscuit, three dol- 
lars and fifty cents per dozen. Many of us took a nap, 
while the enlisted men spent a portion of their time in 
slcirmishing^ a duty all prisoners soon learn, while several 
ladies strolled by and watched the process. 

Night came, and, there being no prospect of a train, we 
composed ourselves to rest. About eleven o'clock we 
were aroused, to take the train at one. After some delay 
we were marched to the cars, and halted before an old 
rickety thing with two large holes in the bottom, and or- 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 47 

dered to embark. About forty succeeded in getting into 
the car, when the lieutenant in charge of us was told that 
the car was full. He said it was not^ and more should 
ride there. Ten or twelve more were crowded in, when 
it was declared that no more could ride there. The lieu- 
tenant then ordered in two of his guards, and told them 
to use their muskets in driving the men back,/or the whole 
sixty-one must and shoidd ride in that car, no matter what 
the consequences might be. After a good deal of swear- 
ing on his part, and no little grumbling on ours, the whole 
sixty-one were crowded into the car; but for more than 
one quarter of us to sit down at the same time was out of 
the question, to say nothing of trying to sleep in that con- 
dition ; but this was not all of our trouble,/or the guards 
must ride with us. They attempted to get standing room 
near the door, but could not; and finally, referring the 
case to the lieutenant, he gave permission for four of the 
officers to ride on top of the car, thus leaving room for 
the guard, and in that packed, suffocating condition, we 
were to ride to Charlotte, North Carolina. We finally 
started from Greensboro' about two o'clock the next 
morning, ran about ten miles, then came to a dead stand. 
The engine was unable to draw us. It was uncoupled 
and started off to get up steam, and after an hour return- 
ed, and we went on at the rate of about eight miles per 
hour. 

" The night, the long dark night, at last 
Passed fearfully away. 
****** 

We hailed the dawn of day, 
Which broke to cheer the suffering crew 
And wide around its gray light threw." 

A drenching storm came on during the night, which. 



48 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

though uncomfortable to those on the outside, seemed to 
cool the atmosphere, and make it more tolerable to us 
inside. 

This morning we- found ourselves passing through a 
low, flat country, but little cultivated, and at nine o'clock 
crossed the Yadkin River, and arrived at Salisbury, North 
Carolina. While waiting here for a train to pass, I 
learned that the town contained about five thousand in- 
habitants, and was the site of the State Penitentiary, 
which has been occupied more or less during the war by 
Federal prisoners. Lately a stockade had been built, 
where many more were confined — another of those '•'•heW 
where the Rebels have murdered so many of our brave 
men. Salisbury was also a place of punishment for 
Rebel deserters, who were brought here to serve out the 
balance of their time with ball and chain attached to 
them. They were kept at work breaking stone, carrying 
wood, or some such duty, which their punishment did 
not prevent them from doing with some freedom. 

Here, for the first time, we saw a Rebel flag floating 
in the breeze from the top of a staff, and we treated it 
with contempt. While we were thus waiting for the 
train, a citizen came and inquired for Colonel White, 
65th Pennsylvania Volunteers. Colonel White immedi- 
ately responded to the call, and, stepping out of the car, 
stood within two feet of the door. While thus engaged 
in earnest conversation with his friend (an old acquaint- 
ance), with guards all around him, a boy, by the name of 
Arnold, sitting on the top of the car, being one of the 
train guards, chanced to spy him, and, standing up, or- 
dered him into the car, with the threat that, if he did not 
ofo at once, he would come down and beat his brains out 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 49 

with his musket. The colonel did not hear him, or at 
least did not pay any attention to the threat, when the 
boy came down from the car, and, seizing him roughly 
by the arm, gave him a push toward the car door, say- 
ing, " Go in there, you d — d Yankee son of a ." 

Captain Belger (of Belger's Battery, 1st Khode Island), 
who was looking out of a hole that had been made to let 
in the air, and who chanced to see the proceeding, very 
quietly remarked to another officer standing by, "that 
he thought that rather rough for a boy." The boy heard 
the remark, and, calling for his musket, cocked it, and, 
bringing it to his shoulder with his finger on the trigger, 
said, " He would learn a Yankee how to talk to him." 
Captain Belger dodged back, and the villain was about 
to shoot into the loaded car, when Captain Carpenter, 
6th Pennsylvania Cavalry, who was sitting on the top of 
the car, remarked "that he saw no cause for such treat- 
ment as that." " I'll show you," said the young Eebel, 
pointing his gun at him. 

"Please point that gun the other way," said Captain 
Carpenter, in the politest manner possible. 

"D — n you, don't you talk to me in that way," said the 
Rebel , and, letting down the hammer of his musket, he 
came up to Captain Carpenter, and struck him three 
times on his feet and legs, when the captain drew them 
up out of his way. Supposing the matter was all over, 
he took no farther notice of it ; but the young villain 
climbed up on the car, came behind the captain, and 
struck him twice over the back of the head with his 
musket, knocking him senseless upon the car, and then 
walked off with a " TAere, d — n you, take that r A rush 
was made by the officers for the captain, and ho was 

C 



60 SKETCHES 01* PRISON LIFE. 

saved from falling from the top of the car. Water was 
brought, and he was soon restored to consciousness, but 
suffered from the injury for several days. 

There was a moment when all felt like killmg young 
Arnold on the spot, but better judgment prevailed, and 
no violence was offered — much the safest and best way 
for us under the circumstances. Shortly after, Lieuten- 
ant Gay came round, and, learning there had been some 
disturbance between the of&cers and the guard, went to 
Arnold and inquired into the matter, and he told him 
his story. • Without asking any farther questions, ho 
stood in front of us all, called the attention of his guard, 
and addressed them as follows: "I have heard of this 
affair of Arnold's. -'He did just right. I don't want any 
of you to take a word from the d — d Yankees. If they 
don't mind you at the first word, put a bullet through 
them, d — n 'em. Arnold did just right." He then came 
up where Captain Carpenter was lying, to see if he was 
much hurt. 

While there, one of his guards, who was sitting close 
by Captain Carpenter all the time that Arnold was talk- 
ing to him, attempted to tell Lieutenant Gay that Cap- 
tain Carpenter was not to blame at all, for he did not in- 
sult the guard ; when the lieutenant turned around, and 
told him to shut up his d — d head, for he (the guard) 
knew nothing about the matter. We began to think 
that our lives were not worth much in his hands.* 

We left Salisbury at 12 M., passing through a wet, 
marshy section of country, interspersed with pine groves. 
After we left Salisbury, Lieutenant Gay allowed six or 

* A citizen standing by remarked tliat such things would not continue 
long ; that we had friends cvon there. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 51 

eight more to ride on the top of each car. At one of 
the stopping-places, permission was given to four enlisted 
men to climb to the top. Three of them had succeeded 
in reaching it safely ; the fourth one was a sickly, weak- 
ly boy, hardly able to walk. The lieutenant, in com- 
pany with a guard, was watching him, when the whistle 
blew, and the train started. --Instead of leaving him to 
make his way up alone, as he was likely to succeed in 
doing, he at once ordered the guard to shoot him, which 
he did. The poor fellow dropped upon the track, and 
the cars passed over him. We received no rations till 
dark that night, being thirty-six hours with nothing to 
eat. 

We arrived at Charlotte about four o'clock in the 
midst of a rain-storm ; but we were very glad to get out 
of the packed cars, for we felt almost dead. We were 
then marched to a little grove, and waited patiently for 
our rations till dark, when we received, for two days, 
four hard tacks, four inches by six, made of bran and 
middlings, black, mouldy, and rotten, and one fourth of 
a pound of bacon. 

We made sure of one full meal, that is certain, and 
then lay down on the wet ground to sleep. My chum 
and I each had a blanket, so we slept comfortably, till 
about half past two the next morning, when it began to 
rain very hard. It awoke- us, and we discussed the 
question as to what we had better do, but finally con- 
cluded to let it rain, and sleep what we could. We cov- 
ered up our heads, and finally awoke at daylight, to find 
ourselves wet to the skin, and four inches of water in the 
centre of the bed ; but we found no fault with that, for 
we were used to rough weather. 



52 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

"We started soon after daylight for Columbia, the capi- 
tal of South Carolina, and found our accommodations no 
better than on the other train, except that a few more 
were permitted to ride on the top of the cars. Of Char- 
lotte I shall have occasion to again speak. A few miles' 
ride brought us into the notorious State of South Caroli- 
na — the one which led the van in the hellish ivorh of se- 
cession, and, up to this time, had eaten the least of its 
fruits. We had anticipated seeing much of the spirit of 
hatred manifested toward us in our passage through this 
state, but we were most happily disappointed. At no 
point along our route had we found the people so willing 
to attend to all our wants as they were in this. At al- 
most every station we found white people or negroes 
with snacks* to sell, at moderate prices to what some had 
obliged us to pay. In fact, had we not possessed the 
means of thus buying food, we must have suffered very 
much on the road. I know the poor private soldiers did 
not get half enough to eat any day they were with us. 
The people seemed more anxious to obtain "greenbacks" 
than any we had seen before — quite a significant fact. 

During this day's travel we passed through some very 
pleasant little villages, Chester and Winnsboro' being the 
principal ones. At the latter, a young lady flaunted in 
our faces a little Eebel flag; but each one treated the 
act with silent contempt, not deigning to notice it by 
making a single remark. 

We reached Columbia at dark, and changed cars 
again, but from bad to worse. The car to which wc 
were transferred had been used for transporting cattle 

* A snack consisted of a piece of bread and meat, or cold potatoes, 
cake, pie, any thing yon could take in yonr hand to eat. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 53 

and mules, and bad not been cleaned out. The guards 
were dirty, lousy, and abusive, and the air was damp and 
thick. We had but one door open, and that was filled 
by the guards, and orders were issued to allow no one to 
leave the car under any circumstances lohatever. Many of 
the officers were sick with diarrhoea, and we were liter- 
ally packed into the car. All of these things made the 
night one of horror, long to be remembered by us all. 

Morning found us at Branchville, the junction of the 
South Carolina Kailroad with the Charleston branch. It 
consists of one very good house, used as a depot and ho- 
tel, three or four others much inferior, and the usual 
number of negro huts. As we passed on toward Augus- 
ta, the country began to look better, and more culti- 
vated. 

Lieutenant Gay gave us another specimen of his no- 
tions of chivalry to-day in ordering the guard to shoot 
one of our privates who had gotten off the train to at- 
tend the calls of nature, and was likely to be left. The 
guard had more humanity than ^he wretch who com- 
manded him, and refused to shoot ; whereupon the train 
was stopped for the poor sick man to come up, and then 
orders were issued to shoot the first man ivho attem]^ted to 
get out on the ground. 

The day was quite pleasant, and passed off without 
much occurring worthy of record, except that some of 
the privates jumped from the train while it was running, 
and the guards would shoot at them, but did not hurt 
one of them. We finally arrived at Augusta, Georgia, 
about 4 o'clock P.M., so tired and hungry we could 
scarcely stand up. As soon as we crossed the river we 
were ordered to leave the cars, and were placed in an 



54 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

old cotton-shed, to remain till the next day. It was, in- 
deed, a relief to us to have the prospect of a night's rest 
after our long journey. We were turned over to Cap- 
tain Bradford, son of ex-Governor Bradford, Maryland, 
provost marshal of the city, and glad were we to get 
out of the hands of the villain Gay. A citizen guard 
was placed around us as we were marched to our quar- 
ters. 

The people flocked around to see the Yankees, and we 
had reason to believe that some of them were disposed to 
do us all the good they could. A hose was at once at- 
tached to a hydrant near by, and plenty of water was 
furnished us, of which we availed ourselves immediately, 
taking the first wash we had had since leaving Libby 
Prison. They then brought in to us a sufficient ration 
of hard bread and bacon, of splendid quality, to which 
we did ample justice. The enlisted men had the same 
issued to them. Supper over, we lay down, and had a 
good night's rest. 

Augusta, the capital of Eichmond County, is the sec- 
ond town for size in the state. It stands on the south- 
west bank of the Savannah Eiver, one hundred and 
twenty-seven miles from Savannah. The town is well 
laid out. The streets are wide, crossing each other at 
right angles, and ornamented with trees. Many of the 
houses are spacious and elegant. The public buildings 
are, a city hall, a masonic hall, academy, court-house, 
jail, theatre, arsenal, hospital, female asylum, building for 
free-schools, two markets, five banks, and seven houses 
for public worship. Steam-boats can run up to the city.* 

* Tliis description of Augusta is taken from the Georgia Gazette of 
18G0. 



SKETCHES OF. PRISON LIFE. 55 

Sabbath morning dawned upon us bright and beauti- 
ful, yet we were still prisoners of war. As we listened 
to the "sounds of the church-going bell," memory went 
back to many a little church in the Northern States in 
which were gathered loved ones; but, alas! the circle 
was broken, we were not there. About nine o'clock 
visitors commenced flocking around the shed, peeping 
through the cracks at us, and watching all our move- 
ments ; yet they treated us with a kind of respect that 
softened, in some degree, the horrors of our situation. 
They seemed anxious to converse with us about the war, 
and wished to know the popular feeling at the North 
concerning it, and we were not slow in telling them the 
truth. I had the substance of the following conversation 
with a lawyer who was on guard near the gate. After 
a little desultory conversation concerning my capture, 
where I lived, etc., he asked, ^ 

Reh. " Do you think Grrant will ever take Eichmond?" 

Off. "Most assuredly I do; just as much as I expect 
to go to Macon, and I am almost there now. A few 
hours will complete the journey if nothing happens." 

Reh. "Well, what are you'ens all fighting for? "What 
do you'ens all want to come down here and steal our 
niggers, destroy our property, and ravish our women 
for ? You never can whip us ; we never will submit to 
be governed again by Yankees." And then, waxing 
warm, he continued, "You'ens have conducted this war 
as no other nation ever did a war before. Such bar- 
barity, such cruelty, such meanness as burning our pri- 
vate property, stealing our niggers, arming them and 
sending them down to butcher us, to incite insurrection, 
and drive us from our own homes and countrv- iVo, sir! 



56 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

you may kill us, you may annihilate us, hut you never can 

SUBJUGATE US." 

Off. "Very well, sir, if annihilation is the word, you 
need not complain if we accept the terms. You are to 
pay the price, not we, and you can bid just as high as 
you choose. It does not take long to annihilate a man 
when you once get at him." 

Reh. " But how long do 3^ou intend to fight over this 
question?" 

Off. "This summer's campaign." 

Reb. "Do you think the war will close this year?" 

Off. " I do, sir." 

Reh. " But what if you do not accomplish what you 
think you will this summer? What then? General 
Lee and Johnston may hinder your plans somewhat." 

Off. "Then we will fight next summer; and if that 
does not whip you ftto the traces, we will try the third 
one ; in short, we will fight you as long as we live ; and 
if the war does not close before we are too old and dis- 
abled to fiofht, our little children will be trained to bear 
arms and fight you too ; and that^ sir, I believe, is the sen- 
timent of the majority of the Northern people. Fight 
you? Yes, sir, we intend to fight you till rebellion is 
crushed and treason punished ; and, to accomplish this 
work, it is the policy of our government to use all the 
means within its reach, the use of public and private 
property, destroying what it can not use, any and every 
thing that you use, directly or indirectly, to support the 
war. Yes, thank God ! we luill use the negroes, for they 
love this kind of work, and are our most faithful allies. 
Unless you repent soon and return to your allegiance, 
something worse than the loss of property may overtake 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 57 

you. Our people North have suffered much to bring you 
back again ; but beware, sir, that you do not go beyond 
the limit of our forbearance, and that public sentiment 
does not cry out 'let them alone,' ^ let just punishment 
be meted out to them,' for ' they are joined to their idols.' 
You may yet feel the power of that government you have 
aimed to destroy. 

" Before we will consent, sir, we will multiply the blood 
and treasure that has been so freely offered. Our glori- 
ous old flag, it must, and it SHALL, yet wave over a unit- 
ed people North and South." 

Here the officer of the guard interrupted us, ordering 
me away, and not to talk with the guard any more, dis- 
persing the crowd which had by this time gathered 
around us of both citizens and prisoners. 

At 12 M. they issued us another day's rations of hard 
bread and meat, and then marched us into the street, 
where a large crowd was waiting to see us; but, after 
standing a little while, we were sent back again, and re- 
mained till 5 P.M., when we were marched to the ddpot 
in a most drenching shower, while the enlisted men re- 
mained behind, to come up on Monday. They furnished 
us with two large, clean, nice box-cars, and the guard put 
in seats for us, a luxury we had not enjoyed before since 
we started. They were uniformly kind and obliging, 
and treated us with great respect. This was, by far, the 
most pleasant part of our journey. Monday morning, at 
nine o'clock, found us at Macon, Georgia, our point of 
destination. As we came in sight of the prison stockade 
my heart sunk within me, for it seemed like being buried 
alive to go inside of it* but there was no relief, and here 
we were at the office, waiting for the calling of the roll. 

C 2 



58 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



CHAPTER lY. 

AT MACON 

After standing a few moments at the office of the 
prison, the roll was called, and in squads of five we were 
marched through the gate, inside the stockade, where we 
were at once greeted with cries of "Fresh fish!"^ "Give 




* The first six months of prison life one is called a "fresh fish," the 
next four months a "sucker," the next two a "dry cod," and the balance 
of his time a "dried herrinj;." After exchange he becomes a " pickled 
sardine." 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 61 

'em air !" " Don't take his blanket away from him !" 
" Keep that louse off from him !" etc. — remarks which as- 
tonished us, coming as they did from United States offi- 
cers; and our astonishment being discovered by them, 
turned a good hearty laugh upon us. 

This prison, or stockade, was built in May, 1864, and 
was located three quarters of a mile east of the city, on 
what was known as the old Fair Ground. It embraced 
two acres and seven eighths inside of the " dead line," 
by actual measurement. It was surrounded, or inclosed 
rather, by a stockade built of boards, twelve feet high, 
and so tight we could not look through the cracks even. 

On the outside of this, and at sufficient height to ena- 
ble the guards to overlook the camp, was built a platform 
for the guard line. Upon this were posted sentinels at 
intervals of about ten yards, whose duty it was constant- 
ly to watch us and see that we did not attempt to escape. 
At the northwest corner, near the gate, and also on the 
east side, were posted two 12-pounder brass pieces that 
could sweep the camp ; and, a few days before the 4th of 
July, three others were posted on a little hill in the rear 
of the camp, but, fortunately for us, they did not use them 
while we were there. 

Inside of this stockade, and about twenty feet from it, 
was the z?ifam6us " dead line," which, in this case, was an 
ordinary picket-fence three and a half feet high. Often 
it is only a line of stakes, and sometimes a single board 
nailed to posts. It is called the " dead line," for it marks 
the limit of the camp, and any attempt to cross it was 
death, or at least a shot from the guard. We were not 
permitted to hang clothes or any thing upon it, or even 
to touch it. 



62 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

QUARTERS. 

The Eebel authorities pretended to furnish materials 
for the building of quarters, but at no time while in Ma- 
con were there less than 200 officers without any shelter 
at all. Near the centre of the camp was the shell of an 
old building, used for the general officers' quarters, and 
in part for a hospital. A roof of another like it stood 
near the east side of the camp. As fast as the Eebels 
furnished the materials, sheds were erected, from seventy- 
five to one hundred feet long by twenty feet broad, ends 
and sides left open for two reasons, viz., we could not get 
the lumber to close them up, and we needed the air. 

Many dug holes in the ground under the large build- 
ing, and lived there, getting along tolerably well except 
when it rained, and then they would find their excavations 
full of water. A few had succeeded in bringing blankets 
with them, and they used them for building tents. 

ARRANGEMENT. 

The officers were divided into '' squads" of 100 each, 
one of whom was the commissary, and the senior was the 
chief of the squad. Each squad was subdivided into 
" messes" of 20, one of whom was a commissary. One 
of the officers also received rations from the Rebel com- 
missary, and he was denominated the " chief commissary 
of the prison." 

RATIONS. 

It was the duty of the chief commissary to receive the 
rations in bulk from the Rebel authorities as they sent 
them into the prison. He issued them in bulk to the 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 63 

squad commissaries, dividing them equally among them. 
The squad commissaries, in turn, issued them to their 
mess commissaries, who issued them to the individual 
members of their several messes. 

It no doubt would have amused our friends at home 
could they have seen the straits to which we were often 
put for something to draw our rations in. We could not 
do without them ; we were obliged to draw them that we 
might have something to live on, but what to draw them 
in was an important question. One came with a bag 
made from one of the legs of his drawers (and his only 
pair at that) for his corn-meal ; another had a coat-sleeve 
lining for rice, a stocking for salt, a chip for soft soap, his 
hat for beans ; while another, who has been robbed before 
getting into prison, is obliged to take his only remaining 
shirt to put his rations in. 

The fact is, when an officer is captured it is usually in 
battle, when he has no extra clothing about him, and, as 
a consequence, when he gets into prison he is about as 
destitute in this respect as he can be. 

They issued to each squad of 100 five iron skillets 
with covers ; fifteen iron skillets without covers ; ten tin 
pails or buckets, holding about six quarts each ; ten small 
tin pans for mixing our meal in ; five wooden pails or 
buckets. 

As for any thing to eat with, such as plates, knives and 
forks, etc., I have never known of their issuing any thing 
of the kind, except to a few of the officers who were in 
"Libby" just after the eight hundred left, and the articles 
then issued were those that were left there by the eight 
hundred. "Borrow and lend" was one of the first and 
principal rules of our prison life. 



64 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

Our rations at this time consisted of the following arti- 
cles, issued once in five days, viz. : Seven pints coarse 
corn meal ; one lialf pint sorghum ; one seventh pound 
of maggoty, rancid bacon ; two table-spoonsful of beans 
(black and wormy) or rice ; two table-spoonsful of salt. 

The cooking utensils were not suf&cient for our "use, 
and we were obliged to wait one for the other. It was 
often ten o'clock before we could get breakfast, for want 
of something to cook it in. 

For bread, we would mix our meal with water and a 
little salt, and, putting it in a skillet with the cover on, 
build a little fire under and on top of it, and in about 
twenty or thirty minutes you had what was called a 
" pone" — not very good, yet eatable to us. 

Of our beans we made soup, putting in a little meat 
when we had any. For variety we would make mush, 
or, instead of pone, bake the dough as griddle-cakes. The 
more experienced learned to have a little of the meal 
mixed up and " soured," which, being put into a pone, 
with a little soda, made it quite light, and more palatable. 
We ate the sorghum on the mush, rice, and pone. 

The bacon was maggoty more or less, and had been 
preserved in ashes in lieu of salt. At home we would 
not consider it fit to eat. 

For wood, a detail of two from each mess of twenty 
was allowed to go out, under guard^ to the wood-pile, and 
bring in all they could at one time for their mess, and 
this was for twenty -four hours. They issued, each morn- 
ing at nine o'clock, at the gate, something they called 
axes^ and spades, with orders to have them returned at 
six in the evening, upon penalty of being deprived of 
them the next day. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 6o 

I think a Yankee wou],d feel insulted by offering him 
such tools to work with as they sent in to us. 

The axes resembled two iron wedges put together, with 
a hole through them, and a straight stick in them for a 
helve. The steel is not over half an inch deep, and in- 
variably breaks off after two or three days' use, and one 
could scarcely cJiop with them at all. 

For water we had a fine spring* near the south side 




Washing, 

* It was near this spring that Lieutenant Grierson, 45th New York 
Volunteers, was shot by the guard, early in the evening of June 12th. 
He was full twelve feet from the dead line, and was simply standing by 
the spring enjoying a season of meditation. Those who were near could 






47^/^- 



I GETTYSBURG COLLEGE .| 



66 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

centre of the camp, and in July, they dug three wells, and 
put in wooden pumps, which supplied us with abundance 
of water. 

A little brook ran through the rear of the camp, in 
which we used to bathe and do our washing. Our con- 
veniences for washing were not very ample, but we got 
along better for something to wash in than we did for 
something to wear. While we were engaged in the 
work, the most common plan was to go without till our 
garments got dry again ; here it was not an uncommon 
sight to see ofdcers around the camp minus some very 
necessanj articles of clothing. 

Extra garments were out of the question, and it was 
necessary for one to be as economical as possible ; so we 
went barefooted during the summer, and those who had 
drawers wore them in place of pants during the hot 
weather. 

SHOULDER-STRAPS ON POLICE DUTY. 

The Eebels pretended to police the camp daily, yet if 
it was cleaned once a week they did well. Large piles 
of filth would often be collected, and when the police 

assign no reason for the act but the intention to commit a deliberate mur- 
der, as he was not near the dead line. It was not an unusual thing for 
officers to be down there at that time of night. The senior officer in 
camp wrote to Captain Gibbs, requesting an investigation of the circum- 
stances, and the communication was returned with the following indorse- 
ment : ' ' Such investigation as may by me be deemed proper will be 
made in this case ; and it shall be more complete than in the cases of 
Confederate officers murdered by negro troops at Fort McIIenry and 
elsewhere." The guard who committed the murder was at once pro- 
moted to sergeant, and furloughed for thirty days ; at least so some of 
the members of his regiment informed us. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



67 




Shoulder-straps on police duty. 



carts did come in, we were so anxious to get the camp 
clean that many of the officers helped to load them up. 



ROLL-CALL. 

We usually had roll-call at 9 A.M. each day, after the 
following plan, viz. : 

A company of the guard was brought in, and deployed 
across the yard near the centre of it, while half a dozen 
more were sent through one half of the camp to drive 
out the officers across this line formed by the guard. 
When one side had been emptied, an opening was made, 
and all were counted through; the guard who drove 
them out at first being required to see that none staid 
back in their quarters, and were not counted. 

It usually took from one and a half to three hours; 



68 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

for we generally had to be counted through twice or 
three times before they were satisfied with it. 

An attempt was made to count us by squads through 
the building, but was abandoned after a short time ; for 
many would not be particular and get counted in their 
own squads, but fall in where it was the most conven- 
ient, which would make too many in tliat squad, while 
their own would lack one. 

They finally divided us up into divisions, and counted 
us much quicker, and all at the same time. 

AMUSEMENTS, ETC. 

Time would not drag so heavily on a prisoner's hands 
if he had something to busy himself about ; but we had 
so little to do, and so little to take up our time in the 
way of reading matter, studies, etc., that the days were 
long and wearisome. There were, however, classes in 
German, French, Logic, Rhetoric, Butler's Analogy, and 
in some of the higher mathematics. 

For meetings, we usually had preaching on the Sab- 
bath by one of the chaplains present, at 11 A.M. and 
7 P.M. The forenoon services were usually held under 
the large tree on the west side of the old building that 
was near the east line of the camp. 

Prayer -meeting on Thursday nights, prayer and con- 
ference meeting on Saturday nights. The meetings were 
usually well attended, and profitable to many. There 
was such a tendency to demoralization in prison, that 
whatever tended to keep our spirits up and counteract 
evil influences was truly refreshing. 

And while speaking of meetings, I am reminded of an 
incident which transpired in camp the night before I 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 69 

arrived there, but which, was related to me by one of the 
parties concerned. It is too good to be lost, and was as 
follows, viz. : 

^Religious service had been held in the forenoon, for 
the first 'time in the stockade, and as was the custom of 
the chaplain (White, 4th Rhode Island Battery) who 
made the prayer, he prayed ''for the President of the 
United States, and for our army," etc. During the day 
word came to the commandant of the prison. Captain 
Tabb, that "the prisoners were praying for Abraham 
Lincoln, Grant, and Sherman!" 

Services had commenced in the evening, and the con- 
gregation were singing the first hymn, when in came 
Captain Tabb, accompanied by the officer of the day. 
They at once inquired who had charge of the meeting, 
and being informed that it was Chaplain White, came up 
to him, and, entering into conversation, told him "he 
(Captain Tabb) could not allow any praying in there for 
the President of the United States." 

Meanwhile the hymn was concluded, when Chaplain 
Dixon (16th Connecticut) at once stepped forward and 
began to pray, asking God to "bless all in authority, es- 
pecially the President of the United States, his cabinet 
and Congress, and all his advisers." Also, that " he would 
bless General Grant and his glorious army ; that he might 
be successful in capturing Richmond, the capital and 
strong-hold of the rebellion ; that he would also bless 
Sherman^ spare his life, give him wisdom to carry out his 
plans, that his army might be a victorious one all through 
its campaign ; that treason might be crushed, and traitors 
punished ; that the time might speedily come when our 
' dear old flag' should wave over every village, town, and 
city of the United States, and we enjoy peace asrain." 



70 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

Captain Tabb staid till after tlie prayer was finished, 
and then withdrew from the crowd, with the remark, 
" D — d smart prayer, but I don't believe it will amount 
to any thing ;" and that was his last effort to crush free 
speech in the Federal officers' prison. 

Once before this, however, he gave us a specimen of 
his hatred of Yankees and his notions of justice. 

At the request of a prisoner, he took a watch and chain 
to sell for four hundred dollars — not less. After a con- 
siderable time, when questioned as to the matter, he said 
he had sold them for two hundred dollars ; and upon be- 
ing asked how he came by the chain which he was then 
wearing, said the purchaser gave it to him. After such 
an explanation the officer demanded the return of his 
property, or the four hundred dollars, threatening to ex- 
pose the affair unless it was complied with ; upon which 
Captain Tabb abused him most shamefully, and then had 
him " bucked" for several hours, after which the articles 
were restored. We were all very glad when we were 
relieved from the petty annoyances to which he subject- 
ed us by his being superseded by Captain Gibbs, a gen- 
tleman who, although very strict, made us no promises 
he did not intend to fulfill. 

For the amusements, cricket, wicket, base-ball, and 
sword exercise, for the more active ; while cards, domi- 
noes, and checkers were of the more quiet kind. 

The 10th of June fifty officers were sent to Charles- 
ton, including all the general and field officers down to 
about one half of the majors. It was surmised they were 
to be exchanged, and we all hoped it was to be so. Cer- 
tain it was, they started off in good spirits, feeling that an 
exchange would not punish them much. ' 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



71 




Uucked.' 



About this time, some of the other squad, who had 
been occupying the old "shell," had so far completed 
their quarters as to move in, and squad 12 was ordered 
to take their places. We had no lumber to build bunks, 
so we made sand-hills for a bed, bj piling up a bed of 
sand a foot high, four feet wide, and six feet long. By 
this means we kept out of the water when it rained, for 
there was no floor to the "shed," and the water was six 
inches deep during the hard showers. This month was, 
indeed, the rainy one, for we generally got a shower 
every day ; and such showers — regular drenchers. 

Exchange stock^ run very high about this time, and 
often we were the victims of willful lies, both by the 
Kebels and also by some of our own party, upon that 

* Kumors of an exchange. 



72 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

subject; and, although we had been deceived a hundred 
times before, yet even a rumor would raise our hopes 
more or less. Sometimes they were of the most extrava- 
gant kind ; and, although the whole camp would profess 
not to believe it, yet the greatest excitement would pre- 
vail till the report was " run down," when we would find 
ourselves, as we had a hundred times before, " sold." 

One of the most exciting rumors we ever had, and that 
seemed to affect the crowd most, came to us the evening 
of the 18th of this month. Report said that "Johnson 
had been driven across the Chattahoochee by Sherman 
with great loss, and that Atlanta was on fire. Johnson 
had determined to evacuate it (Atlanta), as he could not 
hold it any longer, and that one of the guards had thrown 
in a paper containing the news." A chase was at once 
instituted to find the " lucky paper." Many had heard of 
such a paper being in camp, but not an officer could be 
found who had read the paper or even seen it himself, 
yet he could tell you of several who had; and thus you 
might chase for an hour or two, only to find at last you 
were humbugged. 

But, for all this, we used to enjoy such rumors, for 
they influenced our exchange stock. Every officer in- 
vested, more or less, in that question, and every fresh 
rumor raised or depressed it in his own mind as well as 
in others. 

On the 22d we were visited by a Catholic priest, who 
had been at Andersonville, and had seen our men there. 
The story he told of their sufferings touched every heart, 
and we each inquired, " Can not something be done for 
them by the officers?" A meeting was called to con- 
sider the question. The plan advised was that a com- 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 73 

mittee should be appointed, wlio should address the Eebel 
Secretary of War upon the subject, asking permission for 
fi-ve of the officers to be paroled to visit Andersonville 
and other prisons, and then be permitted to go through 
to Washington and report the facts to our government. 

The objections raised to this procedure were twofold, 
viz.: 

First, It was asking the government to do what it had 
not seen fit to do before. As loyal and true men, it was 
our duty to believe that the government tuas doing, and 
ivould do, all it could for us, consistent with its plans and 
purposes in carrying on the war, and we ought not to 
embarrass it by any action we might take. 

Our authorities knew perfectly well the condition of 
our brave men at Andersonville, and would not forget* 
them at all ; and, although humanity might demand that 
they be exchanged at once, " grim-visaged war" said 
otherwise, and ours was now a state of war. 

Second, In the request to the Eebel Secretary of War, 
the committee stated that these " delegates are to pro- 
ceed to Washington to represent that our men are dying 
at Andersonville from other causes* than the inhuman 
treatment they were receiving at the hands of the 
Kebels." 

The address was signed by only a small minority, and 
was finally sent out to the Eebel authorities, and that was 
the last we ever heard of it. 

On the 23d some officers arrived from Sturgis's com- 
mand, captured by Forrest in Mississippi. They had 

* The representations they proposed to make were, "that the suffer- 
ing was caused from change of climate, and the hopelessness of ex- 
change." 

D 



74: SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

been robbed of every tbing, clotbing, money, watcbes, 
rings, diaries, and even tbe pbotograpbs of tbeir friends 
at borne, and, not content witb robbing tbem 07ice^ every 
time tbey cbanged bands tbey were plundered again. 

Tbey were destitute indeed, yet were cbeerful-looking, 
and only asked to be excbanged tbat tbey migbt settle up 
tbeir accounts witb tbe villains wbo bad tbus treated tbem. 

Tbey were kept on board of a train of cars for tbree 
days witbout any rations being issued to tbem, baving 
notbing to eat except wbat tbey could buy from tbe Keb- 
el guard ; and at lengtb, wben tbey did get any tbing, it 
was dry corn meal, and only one skillet to cook it in for 
100 men. I bave never known an instance wbere tbe 
Eebels bave ever fed a prisoner under two or tbree days 
^after capture. 

Tbe 27tb was a day of considerable excitement among 
us, and eventually tbe blasting of many bopes. Tbe even- 
ing before, five of tbe officers bad made a plan to escape 
by crawling under tbe stockade at tbe point wbere tbe 
little brook ran under it. It was a dark nigbt, and sev- 
eral trees sbaded tbat corner, wbicb facilitated operations. 
Tbe first bad succeeded well, but tbe second one was less 
fortunate, and, in passing out, made a little noise wbicb 
attracted tbe attention of tbe guard, wbo at once fired in 
tbat direction, but burt no one. 

Tbe long roll was at once sounded in tbe Eebel camps, 
tbe men turned out under arms, tbe artillery manned, 
and every tbing put in order to quell a general outbreak. 
We enjoyed tbe alarm very much; but soon tbe officer 
of tbe day came in and ordered us all to our quarters, 
and not to leave tbem till dayligbt.tbe next morning, for 
tbe guard bad been instructed to fire upon any one tbey 
could see in tbe streets. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 75 

Very soon we heard the howling of the dogs, which 
were brought down to the place on the outside of the 
stockade and started on the trail, and, after about an hour, 
they succeeded in treeing — not a Yank, but a veritable 
coon. 

They were finally obliged to give up the chase till day- 
light, when they came on again, and spent half the fore- 
noon, but were finally obliged to give up the job, no doubt 
to their chagrin, but much to our joy. 

Eoll-call came on, and we soon found out there was 
something terrible on the minds of the authorities of the 
prison. As soon as they had counted us all through on 
one side, they searched the other for tunnels. 

After three hours' close searching, they succeeded in 
finding three; one leading from the northeast corner of 
the old shell occupied by squads 12 and 13, another lead- 
ing under the hospital, the third commenced under the 
second shed from the left, on the west side of the camp. 
They were nearly completed, and the parties who made 
them were only waiting for a dark stormy night to spring 
them, and thus make their way to freedom again. But 
alas ! hope was now gone, and sorrow sat upon the coun- 
tenances of all. The frontispiece represents the process of 

TUNNELING AT MACON, GEORGIA. 

The plan was usually as follows, viz. : A party of from 
six to twelve was made up, who were the principals in 
the matter. Selecting a site, -usually under a bunk, as 
near the dead line as possible, they sunk a shaft or well 
about four feet deep, large enough in diameter for a man 
to work in comfortably. . 

To avoid detection, pieces of boards were fitted in the 



76 SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 

mouth of the well a foot from the top, and, when the men 
were not at work, these boards were put in and the mouth 
of the well filled up, the dirt carefully swept over the 
cracks to obliterate all traces of it, the bunk replaced, and 
then it was ready for inspection. 

About three feet below the surface would be dug the 
tunnel proper, making it large enough for a man to work 
in handily. The men would be divided into reliefs, and 
change work often. One would dig ; another would haul 
the dirt to the mouth of the tunnel in an old sack drawn 
by a string ; another would take it in a haversack or any 
thing he could get, and carry it to the sink and empty it ; 
another would be out on picket, watching for any body 
they did not wish to know of it ; while another would be 
around in the camp on a scout. 

The work had to be done in the night, which made it 
very tedious. Yet, so long as it promised a hope of suc- 
cess, many were willing to try it with all their might. 

The tunnels being discovered, the bunks over the tun- 
nels were ordered torn up, a detail sent in to open the ex- 
cavations, and thus they were left for five days, the guard 
being instructed to shoot any one who attempted to come 
within five feet of them. At the end of that time the 
guard was taken out, and the officers permitted to return 
to their quarters. In the afternoon. Captain Gibbs, com- 
mandant of the prison, sent in an order stating "that in 
the future all tunneling micsi he stopped; if it was not^ all 
the sheds and buildings would be taken down and re- 
moved, the shade -trees would be cut down, and we 
should be left without shelter or shade." 

The order farther stated that "all the bunks and boards 
should be at once removed to the gate, and from there he 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 77 

would send a detail to remove them outside." We con- 
sidered this order as inhuman ; for many, very many of 
the officers, were suffering from diarrhoea, and lying on 
the ground was one of the worst things they could do for 
it • and farther, when the rain-storms came, the ground 
was flooded with water for hours at a time. Some of the 
field-officers got permission to see Captain Gibbs, and 
finally persuaded him to rescind that part of the order 
relating to the bunks — a comfort to those who had them, 
but many of us were without any thing between us and 
''mother earth." 

Forty prisoners from the Army of the Potomac, brought 
in on the 28th, gave us the joyful information that Gren- 
eral Wilson's cavalry had reached and torn up twenty- 
five miles of the Danville Kailroad, and we had quite a 
rejoicing time over it. Days passed on, bringing to us 
our glorious 

FOURTH OF JULY. 

We kept it as never before we had. How, the follow- 
ing letter, written soon after, will show : 

"Federal Officers' Prison, July 5th, 1864. 

"My dear M , — Our nation's birthday has passed, 

and I doubt if any of our people at the North celebrated 
the 4th of July with greater profit than did the officers 
confined at Macon. For variety the Kebels gave us four 
roll-calls in the morning, as if to prevent any thing on 
our part like a celebration, but without effect, for ere the 
last one was over. Captain Todd, 8th New Jersey Infant- 
ry, displayed a little silk flag four by six inches in the 
midst of the crowd, which was at once greeted with rous- 
ing cheers. 



78 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

" This little flag has a history. It was presented to him 
by a patriotic young lady, a Miss Paradise, of Trenton, 
New Jersey, and the captain had carried it ever since in 
his pocket-book, and, when captured, he secreted it to 
prevent the Eebel guard from taking it from him. Aft- 
er the cheers were given, another officer sang the ' Star 
Spangled Banner' with effect, while the glorious em- 
blem was held up to the view of all, and then the song 
was cheered. I think the guard trembled a little, and 
were fearful of an outbreak, judging from the haste with 
which they left the yard. Without any previous arrange- 
ment, the crowd adjourned to the large building, when 
Chaplain Dixon, of the 16th Connecticut, was called out, 
and who made a most excellent and patriotic prayer, re- 
membering our generals and our brethren in the field 
and on the sea, our sick and wounded, our noble Presi- 
dent, his cabinet, and Congress, and our dear ones at 
tome. 

" Captain Ealph Ives, of Eochestcr, New York, was 
called for, and, mounting the table, gave us a sharp little 
speech touching ' the day we celebrate.' He was followed 
by Lieutenant Ogden, 1st Wisconsin Cavalry, in a speech 
of fifteen minutes, concerning the history and purpose of 
our government. ' Our Country' was then sung by the 
audience. Lieutenant Lee, Captains Lee and Kellogg, 
Chaplain Whitney, lO-ith Ohio, and Chaplain Dixon, also 
followed the singing with telling speeches right to the 
point. 

" We then sang ' Eally round the Flag,' and we sang 
it with a will^ I assure you. Lieutenant Colonel Thorp, 
1st New York Dragoons, was then called out, who added 
fuel to the flame of patriotism already burning high in 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 7<j 

our hearts in a speech of half an hour. The points of his 
speech were, ' the right of the people to crush this rebel- 
lion;' 'the necessity of closing this work, and doing it 
thoroughly — not turning back a single moment till every 
traitor loas subdued or annihilated.' 

"It was masterly in its effect, and the audience showed 
their appreciation of it by frequent and prolonged ap- 
plause. In fact, it seemed to tell too much for the feel- 
ings of our Eebel commandant outside, for he sent in his 
officer of the day to stop the proceedings and to break up 
the meeting. Over us all this while floated our little 
starry banner, the emblem of freedom, and many an eye 
was dimmed by a tear as it gazed upon it for the first 
time in long, weary months. 

"Of course the speaking was stopped, and the crowd 
quietly dispersed, but not till we had given three rousing 
cheers each for President Lincoln and the little flag, the 
Proclamation, Grant, and Sherman. 

" I heard many officers say that it was the best 4th of 
July they had ever spent, and it would long be remem- 
bered. 

" I have often asked the question myself. How do those 
officers feel about our country and government who have 
been so long in prison ? Are they still true to the prin- 
ciples that led them first to take up arms against the Eeb- 
els? Has not their long imprisonment and hardships 
dampened their ardor and chilled their affections for the 
* red, white, and blue ?' 

"The experience of yesterday fully satisfied all my 
questionings upon that subject, and I doubt if there lives 
upon the face of the globe a more true, loyal, and patriot- 
ic band of men than the officers confined here at Macon." 



80 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

In the course of tlie afternoon the following order was 
posted on the bulletin-board. It will best explain itself. 

" Special Orders No. 6. 

" C. S. Military Prison, Macon, Ga., July 4tli, 1864. 

" I. Lieutenant Colonel Thorp is relieved from, duty as 
senior officer of prisoners for a violation of prison rules, 
and Lieutenant Colonel McCrary will again assume that 
position. 

" 11. The same order and quiet will be observed on this 
day as on any other. 

'' III. A disregard of this order may subject offenders- 
to unpleasant consequences. 

*' Geo. C. Gibbs, Captain commanding." 

But the order came too late. We had had our cele- 
bration, and nobody* wanted to have another, so we were 
all quiet as need be the rest of the day. 

After the meeting was over, Colonel Thorp was called 
out to headquarters, when the following conversation 
took place between Captain Gibbs and himself: 

G. "What's your name?" 

Col "T.J. Thorp." 

G. "Were you addressing the officers in the prison?" 

Col " I was." 

G. " What did you mean by it?" 

Col " It was the desire of the officers that I should 
address them, which I did^ as is the custom in our coun- 
try on the 4th of July." 

G. " Sir^ I shall put you in irons^ and send you to jail." 

Col " Yery well, you can do so ; but such treatment 
will not ameliorate my feelings toward you or the Con- 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 81 

federacy in the least. We deem it not only a privilege, 
but a duty, to commemorate the 4:th day of July as the 
birth-day of a great nation, for whose defense and perpe- 
tuity we are willing to suffer^ and die if need be." 

At this the captain became more quiet, and commuted 
his verdict to solitary confinement in the jail without 
irons; but, before the guard arrived, the order was en- 
tirely revoked, and Colonel Thorp was sent back inside 
the stockade, with threats of summary treatment if he 
persisted in addressing the officers again on any subject. 

The following " Poem" was written on that day, and 
presented to the officers by Lieutenant Ogden, 1st Wis- 
consin Cavalry, formerly Professor Ogden, of the Wes- 
ley an University, Delaware, Ohio. It has never been 
published before : 

THE FOURTH OF JULY IN PRISON. 



The light of that glorious morning is breaking, 

And night's sable curtains are folded away ; 

For the sons of Columbia, all harnessed, are waking 

To the battle of freedom that lowers to-day. 

On the day of the nation's convulsive emotion, 

When she breathed her first breath in the pangs of her birth, 

Then she shook with the thunder of war's dread commotion, 

And the wail of her anguish was heard round the earth. 



But the God of the down-trodden people was with us. 

And he heard the deep wail of that sorrowful time ; 

Then his arm was made bare, and his angel, to save us, 

Sped swift as a sunbeam o'er country and clime. 

Till he came to the "Hall" where our councils assembled, 

Were struggling to bring the new nation to light ; 

And he touched those brave hearts, and two cherubims trembled 

Upon the "old flag" that hung full in their sight. 

T)2 



82 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



Then a thrill of delight was sent through the nation — 

To life it sprang up, but an infant at first ; 

But soon it grew strong, and the whole world's libatiuu 

Was poured at its feet from the sea and the earth ; 

And wide through the valley far southward and westward, 

The emigrant sought for his kindred a home ; 

And the wilds echoed joyous the songs of the woodman, 

And were dressed in the garb of their prophetic bloom. 

IV. 

Then I saw, while the cherubim soared o'er the mountains, 

That a serpent was coiling its folds in the soil ; 

And he left his foul slime on the land — in the fountains — 

For the slave sweat and bled, unpaid for his toil ; 

And the land that was blooming like roses in Eden, 

Grew sick and forsaken in valley and plain, 

For the death-worm was there at its vitals still feeding, 

And it writhed like a giant in death-throes of pain. 



Then I looked, and the Maid of our Freedom was weepin; 
By the tomb of our Washington buried so long, 
For the hearts of our fathers in glory were sleeping, 
And their deeds and their valor lived only in song ; 
But even in the North, where the storm and the tempest, 
Beats wildly and loud 'gainst the war-eagle's nest, 
Her fledglings screamed fiercely, and flew to the contest 
From the North, from the East, and the eclioing West. 

"VI. 

Now bellow the thunders of Mars' rolling chariot, 
And the blood of the martyr gushes out from its wheels ; 
For the sage and the sire, the son and the patriot, 
Are marshaled in fight on the red battle-field. 
The contest is fearful, while onward, Hgid onward! 
The flag of our country — the war-eagle's cry — 
Exults in the smoke and the loud shriek of battle, 
And are borne o'er the ramparts of freedom on higli. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 83 



Oh, day of our birth and our glad exultation, 

Lift high the "old flag !" let it flaunt to the sky! 

The hope of the country, tlie pride of the nation, 

The "Flag of the Free," on the "Fourth of July!" 

Let thy ^gis of glory be lifted in battle 

To-day, where the cohorts of freedom shall stand, 

Where the loud cannon's roar, and the musket's fierce rattle, 

Hurl the hosts of rebellion from out this good land. 

VIII. 

This day shall exalt thee, thou emblem of glory, 
A terror to traitors — the hope of the slave ; 
In thy folds are still lingering the legend and story 
Of the sons of Columbia, the true and the brave. 
And as Washington bore thee in triumph and glory, 
When the pangs of our birth shook the earth and the sea. 
So now in our baptism, all blood-streaked and gory. 
Shall Abraham bear thee, " thou Flag of the FreeV 



84 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



CHAPTER V. 

SAVANNAH. 

On the morning of the 27th of July, Lieutenant Davis- 
at roll-call notified the first division to be ready to move 
to Charleston at 5 P.M. It was a busy time till that 
hour. Clothes were washed, pones baked, haversacks 
made ready and filled for emergencies/^ 

Judging from the extensive preparations being made 
in that direction, it was evident that many intended to 
escape if possible. Lieutenant Davis began to call the 
rolLat 5 o'clock P.M., passing the officers through the 
first gate into the space between the " dead line" and the 
stockade. 

Soon after dark, those who remained, and.who had par- 
ticular friends in the party designated to go, determined 
not to be separated from them, and, after working a while, 
succeeded in joining them by pulling off some of the pick- 
ets from the " dead line," so that when Lieutenant Davis 
counted them through the outer gate he found over fifty 
more than he had called for. 

These were accordingly sent back inside of the stock- 
ade, while the others, after sleeping on the ground till 8 
A.M. the next morning, were marched to the train, and at 
four o'clock started for Charleston via Savannah. This 

* An emergency to a prisoner was an opportunity to escape, and hence 
we held ourselves in readiness for all opportunities whenever we were 
moved. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE? 85 

was the last we saw of them till we joined them, seven 
weeks after, at Charleston. 

The next morning we received a re-enforcement of 111 
officers, captured both from Sherman's and Grant's army. 
Those from Sherman informed us that Hardee's great vic- 
tory of the 22d was a dear one to the Rebels ; that he had 
been unable to maintain his position, and was obliged to 
fall back to his former one, suffering a terrible loss both 
in his advance and retreat. 

About this time we obtained a paper, and found the 
news column headed, in leaded t3^pe : 

" The Raid into Maryland ! !" 

"Early within Four Miles of "Washington ! !" 

"He throws Shells into the City ! !" 

"Great Consternation among the Inhabitants! !" 

" Probability of its Capture ! !" 

" The City left Defenseless ! ! !" 

As might be supposed, these items caused great excite- 
ment in camp, and we waited impatiently for farther 
news, not knowing the truth of the matter. A few days 
after we got another paper, containing a dispatch from 
General Grant, in which he says " that Washington will 
take care of itself, for he must attend to Richmond." This 
quieted our fears, and we felt that Grant would take care 
of the Rebels and their army. 

On the 28th 600 more left, being marched to the cars 
at 3 AM. the 29th. Several embraced the opportunity 
to get under instead of into the cars, and thus managed 
to escape. Many of us had determined to escape while 
running from Savannah to Charleston, and we were quite 
busy cutting holes with saw-knives in the bottoms of the 
cars. As we reached the road leading to Charleston we 



86 SKETCHES OF PRISOX LIFE. 

noticed that something was wrong, for, instead of going 
to Charleston, we were run into Savannah. I afterward 
learned that we were stopped bj an order of the com- 
manding general of the department, and that we could 
be better cared for in Savannah than Charleston. 

As we arrived in the city, a crowd collected around the 
train to see the "Yankee prisoners," the majority of whom 
w^re colored people. They seemed to understand our 
feelings, and had respect for them, saying very little to 
us, while many of them manifested an interest in us such 
as we had not seen before in any city of the South. We 
were escorted by a company of the City Battalion to the 
old United States Marine Hospital, and turned loose into 
the yard. It appeared that all the preparations for our 
reception had been made since seven o'clock in the morn- 
ing, and they had nothing ready for us but the " stock- 
ade" or " pen." "We found inside several boards, which 
we at once appropriated for bunks ; and, to destroy them 
for any other use, early the next morning we cut them 
lip the right length for our beds, and thus managed to 
obtain boards to sleep on. 

The yard or pen contained about one and a half acres, 
surrounded on three sides by a brick wall eight feet high, 
and on the top of this was a board stockade or fence of 
four feet more, while the third side was altogther of 
boards, same height as the other. Two sentry-boxes 
graced each side, and from which the guards overlooked 
the camp. There were several large trees in the yard, 
under the shade of which we passed many a long, weari- 
some hour. 

The next morning they brought us in some small "A" 
tents, issuing sixteen to ninety -six men. These we pitched 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 87 

in regular streets, first cutting them open to the peak, that 
we might spread them wider and make them cover six 
of us comfortably. They also issued to each squad of 
100 a large iron pot, holding sixteen gallons, for washing 
purposes ; eight tin kettles or pails, holding twelve quarts 
each, for cooking ; eleven small iron skillets for baking 
our bread in and frying our meat : sixteen tin pans, each 
holding six quarts, for mixing our meal in ; four wooden 
buckets or pails, two axes, and two hatchets. 

For rations they issued to us daily one pound of fresh 
beef five days of the week, one half pound of bacon the 
other two days ; one quart of corn meal ; one pint of rice ; 
one fourth of a gill of vinegar ; one tea-spoonful of salt, 
and a small piece of hard soap. The rations were of very 
fair quality, and, had the bread been any thing but corn, 
we would have got along tolerably well. Once the rice 
that was issued to us was musty, and, upon its being 
shown to Colonel Wayne, he ordered it to be gathered up 
and returned to the commissary, with instructions to re- 
place it by good rice ; the only instance' I have known 
or heard of where the Eebels have taken back an issue 
of any thing, no matter how bad it was. 

The wood was drawn into the yard each day and is- 
sued the same as the other things were, and was of suffi- 
cient quantity to do our cooking, which was all we need- 
ed, as the weather was warm and pleasant. 

We were guarded by the 1st Greorgia Regulars, Colonel 
Wayne commanding. The officers of his regiment were 
gentlemanly, and uniformly treated us with respect. 

His character will best be illustrated by the following 
anecdote : 
. A few days after we had become somewhat settled, to 



88 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

prevent tunneling and facilitate inspections, he claimed 
to have issued an order requiring the tents to be raised 
three and a half feet from the ground, and the bunks 
two and a half feet, and ordered an inspection for that 
day at 2 o'clock P.M. Unfortunately for us, the order 
never had been sent in ; and farther to hinder us, the axes 
were not allowed to come in that morning till after nine 
o'clock. Many of the oficers had not been able to get 
any lumber, and he refused to let any more be brought 
in ; consequently, at two o'clock, when he made his in- 
spection, he found some sixteen tents that were not 
raised as he claimed to have ordered. Without receiv- 
ing a word of explanation, he called for a detail of the 
guard and took those tents out of the yard, thus leaving 
nearly one hundred ofldcers without any kind of shelter. 
A terrible rain came on that night, and as the other tents 
were all crowded full, the sufferers were exposed to all 
the severity of the storm, and, as a consequence, took 
cold, from which they did not recover for weeks after- 
ward. 

The attention of the surgeon in charge was called to 
this state of things, and he made a report of the case to 
the medical director, who ordered the tents restored to 
these officers ; and two days afterward they were re- 
turned. 

Such kind of treatment did not increase our love for 
Confederate rule or for Confederate officers very much. 
Some mornings he (Colonel Wayne) would get 2i fit on, 
and would not let the commissary have an ax to cut up 
the beef till after roll-call, thus keeping six hundred offi- 
cers out of the principal part of their breakfast. 

The mornings were usually hot and sunny, and the 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 89 

green flies swarmed in abundance, and at such, times it 
would turn black before we received it. 

The guards generally treated us well, with few excep- 
tions. One day a party of us were engaged in building 
an oven near the " dead line," and as was natural, with- 
out thinking, we would occasionally touch it. After one 
or two warnings from the sentinel in the box near by, 
we heard the click of a musket, and some one looked up 
just in time to warn one of his comrades (who had 
thoughtlessly touched the '' dead line") ; for the guard 
had brought his musket to his shoulder, and was about 
to fire. After that, one of the of&cers kept watch while 
the rest were at work. 

In contrast with the above, another of the guard, who 
was an Irishman, was inside the camp one night to attend 
to the fires, when he came up to a group of the prisoners, 
and, with his good-natured brogue, asked, 

"How things wint inside?" 

" Oh, very well," replied one. 

"Do you want any hard tobacca?" 

"Yes, we are all out," said several. 

" Here, take that, and God bless yees," said he, giving 
us a good-sized plug — all he had. 

"How are matters going outside?" we inquired. 

" Goin' bully ; Sherman is after Atlantha, and, I tell 
yees, we Irishmen are-glad of it. I have a wife in Atlan- 
tha, and I wrote her a letter the other day, telling her not 
to lave the city when Sherman comes in, but to stay 
there with the childers, and then I will come home to 
stay with her. We is all your friends here in Georgia. 
Every Irishman will help yees to get off, if yees can only 
get out of here. Why don't yees burrow out ? If yees 



90 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

can get out fifteen rods from the wall yees are all right. 
I am not a Kebel, and never was ; and there are twenty- 
three in my company who are with me. We are going 
to disart the first opportunity. They dasent send us to 
the front, for they know us. They watch us very close. 
If they knew I talked so, they would kill me before 
raornin'. I will do all I can for yees. I must be gone, 
or I shall be misthrusted. Good-night; God bless yees!" 

He was true to his promise; for he did help us to 
nearly all the papers we had while we were there. He 
would wrap them around a stone, and, watching his op- 
portunity when the other sentinels did not see him, throw 
it over the " dead line." 

It was not long after our arrival here before the tun- 
neling commenced. Two tunnels were in process at the 
same time. One on the west side of the camp was dug 
through an old vault, which was a great help in secret- 
ing the earth that was dug out of the excavation. Ar- 
rangements had been made to go out on a certain dark 
rainy night, and all that remained was to spring the tun- 
nel, that is, to open the outer end. One of the party 
went down into it, and, after a few moment's work, suc- 
ceeded in opening a hole large enough to let out his head, 
when the sharp cry, " Go back dar, you Yank, or I will 
shoot; cawpal of de gaud, post No. 17," made him draw 
in his head, and back out to infortn his companions of 
the discovery. 

The truth at once flashed upon their minds that they 
had been outwitted by the Rebels this time, for they had 
posted a guard of sentinels outside of the wall, watching 
for just such developments, and one of them chanced to 
be close by the opening made in the tunnel. The officer 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 91 

of the day came in at once with a guard, found the tent 
where the tunnel started from, drove out the inmates, 
placed his guard over it, and the next day Colonel 
Wayne sent two of the occupants of the tent to jail for 
tunneling, but they were returned after a few days. At 
the time we left Savannah two other tunnels were being 
dug, with a fair prospect of success. 

Between the " dead line" and the wall were built five 
stands four feet high, something after the fashion of those 
used at Methodist camp-meetings. On the top of these 
were built every night pitch-pine fires, and were kept 
up till daylight, thus lighting the camp and making it 
very pleasant, besides conducing much to our health ; 
and it also enabled the sentinels to see all that was going 
on in camp. During the pleasant evenings it was not an 
uncommon occurrence to see groups of the officers sitting 
near these fires, engaged in reading, studying, or playing 
games. 

An effort was made to get books or pamphlets to 
read. Contributions of Confederate money were solic- 
ited in all of the squads, but only two of them succeeded 
in getting any thing. The sutler, who was to buy the 
reading matter, said that, since the war, the bookstores 
and periodical men had not been able to get any addi- 
tions to their stock, and, consequently, they had nothing 
on hand. Paper had been so scarce, they had used up 
all of the old books and pamphlets for waste and wrap- 
ping. 

They would not allow us to have their own city pa- 
pers, consequently we were obliged to go without much 
reading matter ; but, to the honor of some one, however 
(I never could find out who), we received as a gift one 



92 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

day a dozen English Testaments, and half a dozen Hymn- 
books, published by the South Carolina Tract Society at 
Charleston. 

We usually had preaching Sabbath evening by one 
of the chaplains while they staid, and, after they left, one 
of the officers officiated ; for there were several present 
who had formerly been ministers. 

We had prayer meetings Thursday and Saturday 
evenings. Lieutenant Ogden, 1st Wisconsin Cavalry, 
formerly of the Wesleyan University, Delaware, Ohio, 
formed a class, and each morning, immediately after roll- 
call, gave them very interesting and instructive lectures 
on Literature and the English Language. We also had 
here, as at Macon, students in Moral Philosophy, Logic, 
Ehetoric, and the Languages. 

About this time we began to learn something of the 
destitution of the Eebel army. We learned that many 
of the regiments had not been paid for over a year, and 
that the small amount per month that was 'promised the 
enlisted men proved insufficient to keep one of them a 
single day in one of their cities; that those regiments 
away from the front drew very little clothing, and the 
poorest kind of rations ; that their regiments were being 
fast depleted, and could only be filled up by old men 
and boys; that their mercantile interests were suffering 
severely from the stringency of the blockade. 

A knowledge of all these things tended to keep up 
our spirits, and caused us to look for the more certain 
overthrow of the rebellion. 

The 28th of August the Eebels brought in a slip of 
paper purporting to be an offer from their government 
to exchanere man for man, rank for rank, until all were 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 93 

exchanged ; hut the hlach soldiers they said nothing about. 
This occasioned much discussion among us, whether our 
government would or ought to accept such terms. A 
few days after, a part of the correspondence between 
Judge Ould, then Commissioner of Exchange, and Gen- 
eral Butler, was sent in to us and posted on the sutler's 
shop ; in fact, it was nothing but Quid's letter, in which 
he attaches all the blame of non-exchange to the United 
States government. We took some hope from these 
things, for it was evident that there was agitation on the 
subject. We hoped and prayed for deliverance, yet we 
asked not for it at the sacrifice of any principle which 
the government claimed would be violated by acceding 
to our wishes at once. 

The 2d of August brought some hope to our discour- 
aged hearts; for on that day went out from us, to be 
sent through the lines, two chaplains and seven surgeons, 
and we read it as an omen of good to us, saying that the 
government wishes to get out of the way all the non- 
combatants, the sick and wounded, and then would com- 
mence the general work. ^ 

As soon as the chaplains were notified that they were 
to leave the next morning, a desire was manifested by 
many to have religious services once more before they 
went away. Accordingly, word was circulated through 
the camp that there would be preaching by one of the 
chaplains at dark on the green. 

The appointed hour came, and with it a large attend- 
ance of the officers, for it was a lovely evening. The cir- 
cumstances all combined to make the services very sol- 
emn and impressive. We had been many months togeth- 
er as prisoners. They had been our pastors, we their peo- 



94 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

pie ; they the sheplierds, we the flock. JSTow our relation 
was to be broken up. They were to leave us in bonds, 
and return to enjoy the freedom of a prosperous and happy 
country. It seemed also that God would make us mind- 
ful of His presence, for, during the services. He rolled up 
a thick black cloud, from behind which we could occa- 
sionally hear the mutterings of His voice, while ever and 
anon He parted it in twain, that we might behold the 
flashing of His eye for an instant, and then it was hidden 
again, only to be revealed in brighter splendor. 

Chaplain Dixon preached from Luke xv., 25 ; " Lord 
help me." The text was short, and so was the sermon ; 
but it was also timely and to the point, and was listened 
to with marked attention. Chaplain White followed him 
in exhortation, bringing but some most beautiful thoughts 
drawn from our situation and circumstances. 

As he closed, he said he hoped to get to heaven when 
he died, and asked all those present who would try to 
meet him there to raise their right hands, when up went 
all of them. I trust, when the records of eternity shall 
be revealed, it will be seen that our little meeting was not 
in vain. 

They were expected to leave at four o'clock in the 
morning, and were on hand, as were many of their spe- 
cial friends, to see them off; but the provost guard, which 
was to go with them to the railroad, was delayed till aft- 
er the train had gone, consequently they did not get off 
till five o'clock in the afternoon. To them they were 
hours long and weary, full of hopes and fears, yet the 
welcome message came at last, and found them ready. 
Before they started they gave up all surplus clothing, 
books, cooking utensils, any thing they had been using, 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 97 

to their friends, reserving only just enough to get to our 
lines. 

A crowd gathered at the gate, and many slipped the 
address of " dear ones" into their hands, with the request 
to " write them a few words, and let them know where 
and ^^ I am." To them it was a glad hour, and none 
wished them to be obliged to remain longer. 

Amid " Good-by !" " God bless you !" " Hope to meet 
you the other side of our lines," and a hearty shaking of 
hands, the fortunate ones passed through the gate and 
were lost to our sight. We then gave them three hearty 
parting cheers, and quietly returned to our quarters, sad 
and somewhat gloomy. 

The 5th of August brought us the glorious intelligence 
of the defeat of Hood and the occupation of Atlanta by 
our forces. It seemed too good to be true, yet we all 
hoped it might be. Upon asking the officer of the day 
of the truth of the rumor, he said " there had been heavy 
fighting there, and they were afraid they had not been as 
successful as they had hoped to be." When the news 
was confirmed, we felt glorious over it for several days. 

About this time there was considerable sickness, and 
the authorities concluded to fill up the open sink we had 
been using and make us a new one. For this purpose 
they sent in one day fourteen of their colored people, 
seven men and seven women, to do this work. They 
were all barefooted, ragged, and dirty, and to our ISTorth- 
ern eyes the women looked sadly out of place. Among 
them was a boy so white, and his hair was so straight, 
we had a dispute as to his being a slave, but, upon ask- 
ing the guard, he told us he was owned there in the city. 
He could not have been one sixteenth colored, and yet 

E 



98 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

they told us lie was a ^^slave'^ — a "nigger." As I turned 
away in disgust from the scene, I could but think of the 
boasted morality of the South. They "affect great horror 
at the idea of negro equality ; they are very much afraid 
of the North's embracing the doctrine of miscegenation, 
and yet here they have the fruit of it right in thei^pidst 
— no, not that, but the fruit of concubinage, practiced 
from year to year by those who claim to be first in so- 
ciety. 

The husband lives in open adultery with his female 
servants, while his wife encourages him in his crime by 
using the gold obtained from the sale of the fi^uit of her 
husband's loins, to procure place and favor in a society 
that is as corrupt and rotten as herself. But why is this 
state of things permitted to exist? Does not their pulpit 
and press denounce it in thunder tones? No, indeed; 
their press claims that its preservation is essential to the 
national life, while the pulpit attempts to prove that it is 
a creature of God — a divine institution. Is it any won- 
der, then, that we have a war — a war that is to break up 
and destroy this cursed state of things? May God deal 
with us justly and mercifully!* 

Some ladies called one night to see us, and the ofiicer 
of the day opened the gate and let them look in upon 
the hated Yankees. After gazing at us a few moments, 
one of them remarked " that they did not look as sleek as 
they did sometimes," which was probably a fact ; for 
some were barefooted, bareheaded, others without pants, 
more without shirts, and those who had clothes found it 
difficult to always keep them clean and whole. 

The accompanying illustration shows some of the dif- 

* Written while in prison. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



99 



ficulties we encountered in our attempts to keep clean. 
Having no extra clothing, when we did wash we had to 




Washing under Difficulties— Editor on Duty.* 

supply the place of clothing as best we could. A com- 
mon method was to take a blanket and tie it around the 
waist, making a sort of " petticoat" of it. It was not an 
uncommon occurrence for the "ladies" to give us a call 
on washing days (for they were not stated), and would 
see several of these specimens of Yankee ingenuity en 
desliabille. 

The ^^ Republicans^'' one of the morning papers, gave 
us a specimen of its affection one morning after learning 
of our tunneling operations. The article was headed 

* The above was sketched on the spot without my knowledge or con- 
sent, and presented to me by the artist while in Savannah, Georgia. 



100 SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 

"The Escapixg Yankee Doodles;" and after speak- 
ing of the attempt to escape, closed up in the following 
strain : " We have hundreds of dogs trained to catch negroes^ 
which are thirsting for blood, and are ready to he put upon 
trails of escaping Yankees, and we will use them for the ben- 
efit of all ivho attempt to escape ; aiid the best thing the Doo- 
dles can do is to remain under the protecting care of Colonel 
Wayney • 

Shortly after the same paper treated us to an article 
which, for pure meanness, has never been excelled even 
in the Richmond Examiner itself. 

A Lieutenant Greenwood, 3d Maryland Infantry, died 
in the hospital. A lady who lived in one part of the 
hospital building used frequently to come in and see the 
sick, and minister to their wants. In this way she be- 
came quite well acquainted with the lieutenant, and 
found out he was of the same religious faith as herself 
After he died, she bought a lot in the city cemetery, and 
had him decently buried, paying the expenses of the bur- 
ial herself 

As soon as Mr. ^^ Republican^'' heard of it, he published 
the act as an "outrage upon their gallant dead who 
were buried there ; the polluting of the sacred soil with 
the bodies of those who burn their houses, orphan their 
children, and ravish their wives, etc. ;" claiming " that 
no such care was shown to their dead in Federal hands," 
and called upon the city authorities to stop such out- 
rages ; but, for the honor of the city be it said, the 
" News''' was of a different mind, for it administered a 
cutting rebuke to the ^^ Republican,^'' saying that "all such 
articles were no credit to the Southern people ; that they 
had abundant evidence that their dead were decently bur- 



SKETCHES- OF PRISON LIFE. 101 

ied, and that it was nonsense to spend so mucli time and 
ink over so small a matter ; that they could afford to be 
magnanimous and Christian, even if their enemies were 
not," and thus the matter ended. 

Day after day passed, long, wearisome, tedious, bring- 
ing us little news, and no prospect of exchange. Sher- 
man had indeed taken Atlanta; Stoneman had made his 
" raid,'' and been captured, and Grant was thundering be- 
fore Eichmond and Petersburg. Our prison life grew 
more and more intolerable from day to day, and yet 
there was no prospect of any thing better in store for us 
at present, and we could only " while the hours away" 
in sleep, play, or harrowing thoughts of our situation. 
Oh, this turning the mind loose on itself is what makes pris- 
on life so terrible. Could the mind be kept active ; had 
we had books, papers, or had we known what was going 
on outside of us, we would not have suffered as much as 
we did. " Oh for a change" said many, and soon it came. 



102 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



CHAPTEK YI. 

CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA. 

*'Pack np and be ready to move to-morrow morning 
at five o'clock," was an order that came in to ns Monday 
evening, September 12tli. "Where now?" inquired we 
all. " Charleston," said Colonel Wayne. " What for?" 
said a hundred voices. " I hope for exchange," said Col- 
onel Wayne. "God grant it may be so," said we all, 
with tremendous cheer, as we separated to make our 
needed preparation. 

The most of the night was spent in cooking our corn- 
meal and meat, and getting ready to go at the appointed 
hour. The camp looked very much as camps do after a 
march. Little fires burning brightly, around which were 
gathered knots of officers discussing the probabilities of 
our fate, each hoping that from Charleston we might take 
our departure to "God's country," to enjoy again the 
blessings of civilization. We derived much comfort from 
the fact that some of the officers had -been exchanged 
from there, and possibly we might be among the fortu- 
nate ones soon to be treated likewise. About this tir^e it 
had been reported that 600 Eebel officers were in trans- 
ports ofip Morris Island ; and as that was our exact num- 
ber, loerliaps they were to be exchanged for us. 

Sherman was also pressing on into Georgia, and the 
Andersonville prisoners were being sfflft to Charleston 
and Florence, which made an exchange look very prob- 
able. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 103 

" Take no government property, not even your cook- 
ing utensils," was the order from Colonel Wayne ; an or- 
der which many of us obeyed to our great inconvenience, 
as the sequel will show. 

We left the yard at 5 15 A.M., the 13th instant, and 
were marched to the same place where we had left the 
cars two months before ; and, after waiting three quarters 
of an hour, a train of freight cars was backed down to 
us, and we were ordered on board, forty being assigned 
to each car. These cars were old and filthy, and had 
been used for transporting coal, the bottoms of the cars 
being covered with about two inches of the dust. I 
asked one of the Eebel oflficers for a broom to sweep it 
out, when he replied, " The Confederacy were not able to 
furnish brooms to sweep, cars for Yankee prisoners ;" so 
into the dirt we had to go, and make the best of it. Many 
of us left our camp with feelings of sadness, for we had 
found it the best prison, as to rations and quarters, we 
had found in Kebeldom ; and as we left the city, we felt 
to thank the authorities for what little they had done for 
our comfort while among them. 

It is one hundred and four miles from Savannah to 
Charleston. The railroad runs through a low, flat, marshy 
country, being built much of the way on trestle-work 
from eight to twelve feet high. The only station of any 
importance is Pocotaligo, about midway between the two 
places, and within eleven miles of our lines. Had it been 
in the night when we passed it, many would have es- 
caped by jumping from the train ; but, as it was daylight, 
they were prevented. 

As we neared the city, we could see some of the forti- 
fications on the land side ; yet they were empty, and, for 



104 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

the most part, without guns. In crossing the Cooper 
Eiver, we could see Castle Pinckney in the distance, and, 
for the first time since we left Kichmond, could hear the 
fire of our own guns. As we entered the city, about 
2 30 P.M., the streets were fairly crowded by the negroes, 
with a slight mixture of the whites. Here we were in 
the cradle of Secession, the city where that devilish child 
was born, and where it had been clothed with the gar- 
ments of "State Eights," and had gone out to turn the 
hearts of the people against their father (the United 
States government). 

We left the train, and were marched a mile and a half 
up "Coming Street," beneath a boiling sun, to the city 
jail-yard, the grand receptacle for all the Federal prison- 
ers who arrive in Charleston. I think it was the nasti- 
est, dirtiest, filthiest, lousiest place I ever was in. At the 
time we arrived, they had just removed several hundred 
of our enlisted men who had come from Andersonville. 
The ground was literally covered with lice. The next 
morning after my arrival there I killed over fifty on my 
shirt alone, and my case was not an isolated one. 

The yard embraced about an acre. In the north cen- 
tre of it stands the "city jail." It is built of brick, and 
consists of two parts. The front is six hundred by one 
hundred feet, four stories high. The wing is of an octa- 
gon shape, extending out toward the centi:e of the yard, 
having the same height as the other. A tower forty feet 
high rises from the centre of the octagon part, and in this 
they confined their worst criminals. While we were 
there, the negro soldiers of the 54th and 55th Massa- 
chusetts were confined there. Some days these negroes 
were allowed to come out into the yard, and we had a 




E2 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 107 

very good opportunity of talking with them. We found 
them intensely loyal, only asking that they might have an- 
other opportunity to avenge their wrongs while held as 
prisoners of war. They were intelligent, and the most 
of them had formerly been free. A few of them had ' 
been sent into the country to work, and had never re- 
turned, at least so one of their number informed me while 
talking with him about their treatment. The following 
song was composed, and often sung by them, for the 
amusement of the many spectators (inmates of the jail- 
yard), and was entitled " Parody on ' When this Cruel 
War is over.' " 

I. 

When I enlisted in the army- 
Then I thought 'twas grand, 

Marching thro' the streets of Boston 
Behind a regimental band. 

But when at " Wagner" I was captured, 
Then my courage failed ; 

Now I'm lousy, hungry, naked, 
Here in Charleston jail. 

Cho7^us. 
Weeping, sad, and lonely. 
Oh, how bad I feel, 
* Down in Charleston, South Car'lina, 

Praying for a good square meal. 

II. 

If Jeff Davis will release me, 

Oh, how glad I'll be ! 
When I arrive on Morris Island 

Then I shall be free. 
Then I'll tell the conscript soldiers 

How they treat us here, 
Giving us an old "corn dodger," 

They call it " prisoners' fare. " 



108 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



We are longing, watching, praying, 

But will not repine, 
Till JefF Davis does release us, 

And sends us "in our lines." 
Then, with words of kind affection. 

How they'll greet us there ! 
"Wondering how we could live so long 

Upon the "dodger's" fare. 

Choims. 

Then we will laugh long and loudly, 

Oh, how glad we'll feel. 
When we arrive on Morris Island, 

And eat a good square meal. 

They were beautiful singers, and usually between sun- 
set and dark would come to tlie windows and sing to 
drive the blues away. One of their favorites seemed to 
be 

" The dearest spot on earth to me 
Is home, sweet home !" 

And I have seen many a prisoner turn away and wipe his 
eyes, as it brought up the sweet memories of the past. 
This, I believe, was the only enjoyment we had in this 
contemptible "jail-yard." 

For quarters, about one third had no shelter at all. 
Those who had used "A" tents, pitched " flat on the 
ground." The yard was so small that we were much 
crowded, and, when it rained, one quarter of it was flood- 
ed so we could not use it. When it was pleasant, the sun 
poured its heat upon us like a fiery furnace. We could 
get but little fresh air, for the walls were twelve feet 
high ; and when we did, it was a whirling breeze, which 
raised the dirt and filth from the ground, at times almost 
suffocating us. In one corner of the yard was a large 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. Ill 

sink, twenty feet square and ten feet deep, for the use of 
the prisoners in the jail. This had not been emptied for 
some time, and it was nearly full, constantly emitting an 
intolerable stench. Complaint was made about it, and 
they sent in some scavenger carts to clean it out ; but oh, 
it was misery upon misery ! for they were so slow about 
it that, when I left, after nine days' incarceration "in the 
horrible place," they had not half completed the task. 

Some days they would turn out all the deserters, both 
from our own and the Eebel army — their felons, prosti- 
tutes, murderers, thieves (men and women), etc., and thus 
insult us with the presence of their worst criminals. We 
were forty-eight hours there before we received any thing 
to eat, and, when the rations did come in, we had neither 
wood nor utensils with which to cook ; and, had it not 
been for the fact that some of the officers had stolen ket- 
tles at Savannah, and kept them hidden on their way out 
of the prison, we would have been obliged to have eaten 
our meals raw. We made an attack upon the woodwork 
of the old sink, and got off" enough to cook a couple of 
meals, when they brought in some wood. But at no time 
while there did they seem to take one particle of pains to 
make us in the least comfortable; in fact, every thing- 
seemed to be done that would add to our discomfort. At 
one time there was quite an excitement over some new 
discoveries, when it was found that two old cast-iron spit- 
toons had been found, which served for tolerable good 
bake-kettles. 

The work-house adjoined the yard of the jail, in fact its 
walls made a portion of the wall on the east side. It was 
built of brick, and outside presented a very fair appear- 
ance. It has towers on each corner, which give it quite 



112 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

an imposing appearance. It once was quite well arranged 
for its design, yet when the United States officers left it 
but little of its original shape inside remained. The for- 
mer master of it lived opposite, but his "occupation was 
now gone." The following order, picked up within its 
walls, will show what that was. 

"To the Master of the Work-house : 

"You will give the negro David a good sound pad- 
dling, and send him back by the same guard who accom- 
panies him up. The guard has money to pay the ex- 
penses. Please send bill, and oblige 

" Mills, Beach & Co. 

"January 14th, 1856." 

Thank God, David is now free, and no guard can ac- 
company him to the work-house for another "paddling." 

Some of the men found the plates to the oven, and had 
broken them up, and were using the doors and pieces of 
the front for "griddles," upon which they baked their 
corn meal. A single pump, in an artesian well in the 
jail-yard, was the only means of getting water, except aft- 
er a rain, when we could get it out of our old cistern. 
The well was nearly dry after 2 o'clock P.M. each day, 
for it was affected by the tide. The water was brackish, 
and to many a fruitful cause of sickness. 

After inflicting upon prisoners this kind of treatment 
several days, it was the custom of the Eebels to come in 
and offer better quarters to any who would take a parole 
not to escape or to hold communication with any one out- 
side of the guard in which they might be placed. 

We learned that nearly all the officers who had pre- 
ceded us to Charleston were thus paroled, and were quar- 
tered in the Marine and Roper Hospitals. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 113 

I gladly availed myself of the opportunity of getting 
out of the jail-yard, and was sent, with fifty others, to Ro- 
per Hospital. 

The following is a copy of the parole thus signed : 

" Charleston, S. C, C. S. America, September, 1864. 

" We, the undersigned, prisoners of war, confined in 
the city of Charleston, in the Confederate States of Amer- 
ica, do pledge our parole, individually, as military men 
and men of honor, that we will not attempt to pass the 
lines which shall be established and guarded around our 
prison-house ; nor will we, by letter, word, or sign, hold 
any intercourse with parties beyond those lines, nor with 
those who may visit us, without authority. It is under- 
stood by us that this parole is voluntary on our part, and 
given in consideration of privileges secured to us, by les- 
sening the stringency of the guard, of free ingress and 
egress of the house and appointed grounds during the 
day, by which we secure a liberty of fresh air and exer- 
cise grateful to comfort and health. 

" Hereby we admit that this, our parole, binds us in 
letter and spirit, with no room for doubt or technicality 
of construction, and its violation will be an act of lasting 
disgrace. Signed :" 

After signing this, we were marched under guard to 
Eoper Hospital, where we found 800 of those who were 
sent on the first train from Macon. From them we 
learned that over 70 of the officers escaped on the way 
down, but the majority of them had been recaptured by 
dogs and citizens. 

We were glad to meet our old friends, and they, in 



114 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



turn, greeted us warmly. The place seemed a "paradise," 
compared to the jail-jard which we had just left. We 
learned they had spent over three weeks in that pen, and 
been starved even worse than we had, for some days 
receiving for rations only an allowance of sorghum and lard. 




Eoper Hospital, (Jharieston. 



Eoper Hospital was founded by the gentleman whose 
name it bears, who gave it a munificent donation. The 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 115 

City Council of Charleston, at two different times, also 
voted money to complete it. It was designed for a city 
hospital, and seemed well adapted for that purpose. It 
stands on a street facing the famous "burnt district" of 
1861. It is built of brick, plastered over, and marked ; 
thus giving it the appearance of brown stone. The main 
building is seventy-eight feet front by sixty feet deep, 
and four stories high. 

On both sides, east and west, are wings, each one hund- 
red feet long by fifty feet deep, and three stories high. 
On each corner is a tower rising fifteen or twenty feet 
above the roof, adding beauty as well as strength to the 
structura In each wing and on each floor are three 
large rooms, nearly the size of the wings, which, I con- 
clude, were the rooms containing the beds. The main 
part of the building has smaller rooms for the dispensary, 
offices, living rooms, etc. The whole was lighted by a 
very poor quality of gas, which we were permitted to 
use till nine o'clock in the evening. 

The grounds around the building were quite pleasant, 
particularly the front yard. It was tastefully laid out,- 
and filled with flowers and shrubbery; and as we were 
permitted the freedom of the yard, we enjoyed them very 
much. The back yard was terrible filthy and unhealthy. 
It used to be policed every day, but they would neglect 
to carry out the filth, leaving it lying in piles for two or 
three days at a time, till the very atmosphere became 
impregnated with the poisonous vapors. But the great- 
est nuisance was the sink. They allowed the vault to 
become filled up, and then it ran Over, standing in pools 
in the yard, and no effort was made by them to reme- 
dy the evil, and thus it remained while we were there. 



116 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

It was no wonder we had the yellow fever among ns be- 
fore we left the city. It would have been almost a mir- 
acle if we had not. 

A well of brackish water supplied us in part, and the 
balance we drew from two or three old cisterns; and 
when they failed, we went outside under guard to a street 
pump. The last two weeks we were there we were 
much troubled for want of water, for the pump to the 
well gave out, and the cisterns were dry. 

The cooking was done in the back yard with such 
utensils as we could find around the building, or had 
managed to buy or steal from the Kebels. 

Lieutenant Eoach, of the 49th New York Volunteers, 
formerly of Kochester, did us great service. He was a 
coppersmith, and succeeded in picking up a few old 
tools, some old stove-pipe and pieces of iron, from which 
he made several kettles, frying-pans, dishes, etc., for many 
of the officers. Pieces of old iron were found around 
the hospital which served for griddles, upon which we 
baked pancakes. We also built several brick ovens in 
which we did our bread-baking. 

We also found quite a number of old medicine-jars, 
which were very handy " to have in the house." 

Rations were small in quantit}^, and rather poor in 
quality. They were issued for ten days at a time, and 
consisted of flour, three pints ; corn meal, two and one 
third quarts ; rice, two quarts ; beans, three pints (black, 
and full of bugs) ; meat, either four ounces fresh beef, or 
two ounces of bacon daily, or, in lieu thereof, one gill 
sorghum. 

In addition to our rations, the authorities allowed the 
market women to come up to the side-walk, that we 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 117 

might purchase from them vegetables, fruit, etc., for our 
comfort. Ill addition to this, we also had a sutler inside 
of the premises. Those who had money managed to live 
tolerably well, but those who were penniless had to suf- 
fer. We could buy a sweet pumpkin for ($5) five dpl- 
lars ; milk, for one dollar and fifty cents per quart ; flour, 
three dollars per pound, and make quite a good pumpkin- 
pie, as many of the ofiicers did. While here, I think we 
made more advancement in the culinary art than at any 
other time while we were in prison. By adding ten dol- 
lars' worth o? vegetables to our daily rations, one could get 
up quite a good meal. Sweet potatoes were quite plenty, 
and were purchased more than any thing else by us. 

The wood rations did tolerably well, for when we 
lacked some of the old buildings. in the yard would be 
attacked, and made to supply the deficiency. 

The firing upon the city was continued daily, ex- 
cept when the flag-of-truce boat went down the bay. 

The shells usually came over at intervals of thirty 
minutes, but when a fire broke out they would open 
three or four extra guns, and send them as often as one 
every five minutes. One Saturday afternoon a fire broke 
out nearly opposite the work-house, when they com- 
menced shelling it; and so direct was their aim that 
twice they burst their shells in the midst of the burning 
buildings. The negroes informed us that it was a com- 
mon practice of Greneral Grilmore's, and that he had en- 
tirely destroyed one of the fire-engines by bursting a 
shell inside of it, and that the firemen were afraid to go 
to the fires for fear of being killed by his shells. 

From the attic window of the " Roper Hospital" we 
could look down the bay toward "Morris Island," and 



118 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

could see the flash of our guns in the clear evenings ; could 
trace the course of the shell as it left the mouth of the 
gun, climbing up, higher, still higher, till it reached the 
zenith. Then we heard the report of the gun, and would, 
for the first time, hear the sharp, shrill shriek of the shell 
cutting its way through the air, and could trace it still 
farther by its own light, as it gradually descended the 
other arc of its circle ; nearer, and still nearer it came. 
Now it is right over our heads ; it gives out its lightning 
flash ; the danger is past. The report soon follows, and 
we hear the pieces rattle among the brick walls and 
wooden tenements beyond us. Had it burst when at its 
height, its pieces might have struck some of us. They 
have fallen all around us in the yards where we were, 
sometimes within five feet of us. Yet, with one excep- 
tion, during all the time our prisoners were under fire in 
Charleston, but one man was harmed by them. He was 
eating his dinner in his room by his table, when a piece 
of a shell came through the roof, striking his arm, inflict- 
ing a flesh wound, smashing up his table, and going on 
through the floor. May we not say safely that "God pro- 
tected our prisoners while there?" 

While here, we received the most mail, and, I think, 
enjoyed the best mail facilities of any place we had occu- 
pied while in prison, except Richmond. Several loads 
of boxes wer.e also received, in tolerably good condition, 
much to the joy of those to whom they belonged. The 
authorities also allowed us to have as many of the morn- 
ing papers as we chose by paying twenty-five cents for 
them, which we very gladly did — a privilege we had not 
enjoyed since we had been in Rebeldom. About the 
20th of September, we learned from them that Sherman 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 119 

and Hood were trying to effect terms of an exchange for 
all the officers who had been captured since the army 
started in the spring. The 23d, an order came for about 
150 to be ready to move in the morning. It was a joy- 
ous time for those who were to go, and we all hoped it 
was only the commencement of a "general exchange" 
soon to take place ; and our expectations were increased 
by an order received the 29th for all of the naval offi- 
cers to be sent to Kichmond for " exchange." Oh how 
anxiously we watched the papers to see something that 
would give us farther hope in the matter, and perhaps 
would settle the question ! But we watched and waited 
in viain, and soon our feelings sank back into the old 
state, thus to remain till somebody started a plausible 
rumor which would arouse them again. 

I can not forbear transcribing a few thoughts from my 
journal, written at this time in my little room in the at- 
tic. Whether my predictions have proved true, the pub- 
lic must judge. 

" I stand by the little window in the attic of Eoper 
Hospital, and look out upon the ' burnt district' of this 
city. It is desolation indeed. The bare, broken walls 
of the ruined houses remain as monuments to the graves 
of a once thriving business portion of the city. The 
streets and thoroughfares are deserted, and tall, rank 
weeds have grown up in their places. As far as I can 
see, no improvements have taken place since the fire. 
It seems as though the curse of God was resting on the 
place to prevent its being rebuilt. It gives me an unpleas- 
ant feeling to look upon so much destruction ; yet above 
all this comes the reflection that it is, in fact, but just- 
ice to this city of sin. It was in this state that the heresy 



120 



SKETC:^S OF PRISON LIFE. 




Burnt District at Charleston, 



of secession was born and nursed for years, under the par- 
entage and tuition of J. C. Calhoun. It was in this city 
that the open act of secession was first determined upon 
and carried out. It was from this state that the infamous 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 121 

Bully Brooks received his testimonials of approbation for 
his murderous attempt to crush free speech. It was in 
this harbor, and by an inhabitant of this city, that our 
' dear old flag' was first insulted, and our brave Anderson 
and his men compelled to leave a post of honor they had 
sworn to defend and protect for their government. Here 
they make their (not empty) boast that they are the lead- 
ers of this rebellious movement. Is it wrong ^ then, that 
the streets of this city should be deserted — that her thor- 
oughfares should be waste places ? Could God be just 
on earth, and suffer her to remain in all her pride and 
strength ? This is the cup, O Charleston, that thou hadst 
mixed for our Kew York, Boston, Philadelphia. How 
glad are we to see thee drinking the same ! Yet, if God 
be just, thou hast only tasted yet. Fire and sword are 
yet in reserve for thee, and they will surely come. From 
every battle-field of our fair land comes np the blood of 
our slain heroes, crying to heaven for vengeance. As 
thou hast hQQn foremost in bringing about this awful sac- 
rifice, so thou must drink the deepest of the bitter cup. 
Go on, then, in thy mad career. God's time is not yet. 

" 'Live while ye may — 
Enjoy short pleasures, 
For long woes are to succeed.' 

''Thy press and people may talk of independence — an- 
other victory, and the work is done — in time the delu- 
sion will vanish, and the truth will appear. Learn a les- 
son while ye may, or it will be said of you, as of Jerusa- 
lem, 'If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy 
day, the things which belong unto thy peace ; but now 
they are hid from thine eyes.' " 

The following beautiful poem was written by Professor 
F 



122 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



J. Ogden, the author of " The Fourth of July at Macoo, 
CHAELESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA. 



Georgia." 



I. 

Oh, thou doomed city of the evil seed,* 
Long nui-sed by baneful passion's heated breath ! 

Now bursts the germ, and lo, the evil deed 
Invites the sword of war, the stroke of death ! 

Suns smile on thee, and yet thou smilest not ; 

Thy fame, thy fashion are alike forgot. 

Consumption festers in thy inmost heart ; 

The shirt of Nessus fouls thy secret part. 

n. 

Lo, in thy streets— thy boast in other days — 

Grim silence sits, and rancorous weeds arise ! 
No joyous mirth, nor hymns of grateful praise, 
Greet human ears nor court the upper skies ; 
But deadly pallor, and a fearful looking for 
The hand of vengeance and the sword of war. 
Thy prayer is answered, and around, above. 
The wrath of God and man doth hourly move. 



Thy foes are in thy heart, and lie unseen ; 

They drink thy life-blood and thy substance up ; 
And though in pride thou usest to sit a queen, 

Justice at last commends the bitter cup. 
The blood of slaves upon thy skirts is found ; 
Their tears have soaked this sacrilegious ground. 
The chains that manacled their ebon arms 
Now clank about thine own in dread alarms. 

rv. 

Thy sanctuaries are forsaken now ; 

Dark mould and moss cling to thy fretted towers ; 
Deep rents and seams, where straggling lichens gi'ow. 

And no sweet voice of prayer at vestal hours ; 
• The doctrine of State Rights, as taught by John C. Calhoun. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 123 

But voice of screaming shot and bursting shell, 
Thy deep damnation and thy doom foretell. 
The fire has left a swamp of broken walls, 
Where night-hags revel in thy ruined halls. 



Oh, vain thy boast, proud city, desolate ! 

Thy curses rest upon thy guilty head ! 
In folly's madness, thou didst desecrate 

Thy sacred vows, to holy Union wed. 
And now behold the fruit of this thy sin : 
Thy courts without o'erruu, defiled within ; 
Gross darkness broods upon thy holy place ; 
Forsaken all, thy pride in deep disgrace. 



Wail, city of the proud palmetto-tree ! 

Thy figs and vines shall bloom for thee no more ! 
Thou scoru'dst the hand of God, that made thee free. 

In driving freemen from their native shore. 
Thy rivers still seek peacefully the sea, 
Yet bear no wealth on them, no joy for thee. 
Thy isles look out and bask beneath the sun. 
But silence reigns — their Sabbath is begun ! 

VII. 

Blood! BLOOD is on thy skirts, oh city doomed ! 

The cry of vengeance hath begirt thee round ; 
Here, where the citron and the orange bloomed, 

God's curse rests on the half-forsaken ground ! 
Thy treason, passion-nursed, is overgrown — 
Thy cup of wrath is full, is overflown. 
Repent, for God can yet a remnant save. 
But traitors and their deeds shall find the grave ! 

Hospital, Charleston, S. C, Sept. 25th, 1864. 



124 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



CHAPTEK YII. 

AT COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLIXA — CAMP SORGHUM.* 



"Be ready to move to Columbia, the capital, in an 
hour," said Captain Mobly to us the morning of the 5th 
of October, while we were all busily engaged in getting 
breakfast. It was not altogether unexpected ; for the 
"i^rciir?/," several days before, had spoken of the pro- 
vost marshal being sent to Columbia to prepare a good 
place for the "prisoners." The reason of this move the 
Eebels did not condescend to inform us, but we sup- 
posed the principal one was, to remove us from under the 
fire of General Gilmore's guns. Perhaps the breaking 
out of the yellow fever among us had something to do 
with it. All the officials told us we should be much bet- 
ter off in Columbia than Charleston ; the old story of 
improvement, often told, less often realized. 

We "packed up" and waited in the front yard till eight, 
when the gates were opened, and we marched into the 
road or street, with guards on either side. Just before 
we left, the Irish and negro washerwomen came flocking 
to the fence with the bundles of clothes that had been 
given them to wash, many of them only the night be- 
fore. They had been put into the wash-tub, only to be 
wrung out and returned to their owners, wet and still 
unwashed. Quite a number were as unfortunate as your 

* So named, because that was the principal ration we received while 
there. 



SKETCPIES OF PEISON LIFE. 125 

humble servant, who sent out his only whole and best 
shirt to be washed, anxiously waiting its return, that he 
might indulge in the luxury of a clean one. Yain hope ! 
No shirt returned to him, and he was obliged to go to 
the capital of the chivalrous State of South Carolina 
with only the remnant of a six dollar sutler's piece of 
flannel by that name. 

Having been moved several times before, we had learn- 
ed wisdom thereby ; and hence we determined to leave 
nothing that would add to our comfort in a new camp 
that we could possibly carry. As we stood in the street, 
we formed the most motley-looking crowd I have ever 
seen. Boxes packed with remnants of dishes, and rags 
tied up with an old piece of rope, a stick thrust through, 
and the whole borne on the shoulders of two. Chairs, 
pails, satchels, packs of blankets and brooms, old arch 
doors, griddles, benches, pieces of boards, kettles, pans and 
cups, were all taken along with us. Dressed as we were, 
blue, gray, red, white, and, in fact, a mixture of many col- 
ors, we looked more like the inmates of some county 
poorhouse or insane asylum than United States military 
officers. 

As we passed the Marine Hospital we were joined by 
100 more. We soon entered upon King Street, the 
" Broadway" of Charleston, and as we passed along up 
its now deserted walks we could see some of the fruits 
of secession. Tall grass and rank weeds were growing 
untrodden in its midst and alongside its walks. Block 
after block we passed that was entirely closed ; many, 
with only one door opened, revealing scantily -filled 
shelves and empty show-cases. This was the retribution 
that South Carolina was to visit upon Northern cities 



126 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

during the war. Truly, "they that dig a pit shall fall 
therein." 

We could also see the marks of our shells upon the 
houses and business places, showing plainly the fact that 
the shelling of the city was not in vain. Several of the 
officers managed to escape, on our march through the 
city, by dodging into the alleys ; and in one case a Kebel 
sergeant came and took one out, marched him off with 
all the show of authority, and that night deserted with 
him to Morris Island — a plan previously agreed upon. 

"We marched with very little regularity, filling the 
street from side to side, straggling as much as possible, 
to facilitate the escape of those who were trying to get off. 
The citizens, and especially the negroes, who thronged 
the walks, treated us with kindness and courtesy, bestow- 
ing what favors they could upon us, without the knowl- 
edge and interference of the guard. Bread, tobacco, 
pipes, water, and, in some cases, whisky was handed out 
to us. One jolly good fellow, a German, fell in company 
with some others of his nation, who pushed through the 
guard, and walked with him from near the hospital to 
the railroad train, about two fniles. They very gracious- 
ly treated him so often to the contents of a mysterious 
black bottle, that by the time he reached the depot he 
was "gloriously drunk," as well as his companions, which 
fact the guard discovering, drove them all off at the 
point of the bayonet, our prisoner among the rest, for he 
had on a suit of Rebel gra}^ 

When we reached the cars we were nearly exhausted, 
for the day was intensely hot. Embarked again in box- 
cars,, but were situated very comfortabl}^, for we were not 
very much crowded. Just^ before we started, Greneral 



SKETCPIES OF PRISON LIFE. 127 

Gilmore sent over his compliments in the shape of a 
thirty-pound shell, which struck in a field near us with- 
out bursting. We gave it three hearty cheers. The 
whistle blowed, and on we went toward Columbia. 
Passed through a ^ery poor section of country, and ar- 
rived at Branchville at 6 P.M. ; prepared to rest as best 
we could, and finally arrived at Columbia at 1 A.M. 
Were kept in the cars until daylight, when we disem- 
barked, and found a train, both before and behind us, 
loaded with officers. Thus we were all together again as 
we were at Macon. Soon after we disembarked, a Cap- 
tain Semple, in whose charge we now were, rode into our 
midst, and gave orders that all the baggage should be 
made ready to be transported in wagons to camp. '' Bul- 
ly for Columbia," said we; "may this state of things 
continue for many days." For once, we began to hope 
we had changed for the better. Our baggage loaded, we 
sat down to wait for orders. No breakfast, and nothing 
to eat. Ten, eleven, twelve, one, and two o'clock came 
and passed, and still we were there. The hot sun poured 
down upon us ; we had no shade. Some of the officers 
got uneasy, and began to explore. Near us they found 
a cellar filled with bacon, but they could not reach it. 
Found a long pole, drove a nail into the end for a hook, 
and went fishing. Met with decided success, judging 
from the bacon that I saw in the hands of the officers ; 
but, alas ! the game was discovered, and the issue of ba- 
con from that time was stop]jed. 

At four o'clock an order came for us to move, but it 
was only to the other side of the depot, to get into a yard 
for safer keeping. An attempt was made to purchase 
bread, and, in part, succeeded. By sending little boys 



128 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

after it, we could get it for fifty cents a loaf; but as soon 
as it came to the knowledge of Captain Semple, he or- 
dered it stopped, and appointed a sutler, who soon came 
down with a load, and asked seventy -five cents. This 
started a proposition to "raid" him, which so frightened 
the poor fellow that he sold for any thing the prisoners 
were inclined to pay; but it was a dear job for us, for 
when they got us in their power again we had to atone 
for our temerity. 

A guard was placed around us, and, without any thing 
to eat or promise of any, we were told we would re- 
main there all night, and perhaps longer. We had no 
wood. Many had no rations, no money, and were very 
hungry. Wait was the word, and must be the act. A 
few, who had a little meal, made an attack on the fence, 
got a little wood, and made mush. About five o'clock it 
began to rain, a regular South Carolina shower, and con- 
tinued until about eleven that evening. Not one of us 
had a particle of shelter, and were consequently drenched 
to the skin. The night turned cold, and, without fires, it 
was any thing but agreeable. But it was no use to re- 
pine ; so, in the midst of the rain, a number of us collect- 
ed together at the point nearest the depot, and sung, lust- 
ily, "Kally round the Flag," "The Star-spangled Ban- 
ner," " Bed, White, and Blue," and other patriotic pieces, 
for the benefit of a crowd of our " secesh" friends, who 
had gathered in the building opposite to look upon "the 
hated Yankee prisoners." For once, at least, Columbia 
had loyal men and patriotic singing in her midst. 

As the rain continued, the ground was flooded, till, in 
some places, it was ankle deep. Sleep and rest were out of 
the question, as we were obliged to walk to keep warm. 




GETTYSBURG COLLFQ^ 
Gettysburg, fa. 



.n 



R R ■ R Y 



.J 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 131 

Morning dawned at last, revealing two hideous-looking 
cannon that had been planted near us during the night. 
Had the rebels wished to use them upon us they would 
have been of little service, for, as we scattered, their own 
people would be in as great danger as the prisoners. 

While waiting here, a Lieutenant Parker was brought 
in, who had escaped from the train on its way from 
Charleston to Columbia. He had been recaptured, with 
others, by the "blood-hounds." He was badly torn by 
them, and was so weak he could scarcely stand up. He 
was taken to the hospital that night, where he died the 
next day from his wounds — a sacrifice to Southern chiv- 
alry. 

While we were thus waiting. Captain Semple came 
among us, and asked us to take a "parole" not to escape, 
same as we had in Charleston, representing that he had 
a fine camp for us about two miles from the city ; that 
we should have the largest freedom that could possibly 
be allowed ; should be supplied with good comfortable 
tents for shelter ; should have enlisted men to do our 
cooking for us ; should be supplied with any thing and 
every thing they could possibly furnish for our comfort ; 
that mails, money, and boxes should be delivered up to 
us without delay ; a sutler appointed who should be lim- 
ited in his prices, that we might not be imposed upon ; 
in short, it should be very little like a prison, but much 
like a soldier's camp. 

When asked if all these things should be ours now, he 
answered that they had not got the things quite ready, 
but they would have them in a few days. 

" We wait till we see the advantages of a parole before 
we take it," said we all 



132 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

About eight o'clock we were marched out on the Au- 
gusta Eoad, across the Saluda Eiver, about two miles 
from the city, on the top of a hill overlooking the valley. 
Around an old worn-out corn-field, partially covered 
with second -growth pines, had been cut a space for a 
guard-line. Here were posted their lines of sentinels, and 
into this we were turned to make ourselves as comforta- 
ble as we could. This was the good place that had been 
provided for us, and not to escape from which, we were 
asked to give our parole of honor. 

The beauties of our situation can be summed up in a 
few words. They turned us out, like so many cattle, 
into an old worn-out field containing about half a dozen 
little pine-trees six inches in diameter, without a foot of 
board, or a piece of canvas for shelter ; without a 
spade, an ax, a shovel, a cooking utensil, or any thing 
to make or keep ourselves comfortable. The wood, wa- 
ter, and sink were all outside of the guard-line the first 
two weeks we were there. If a man wanted to get some- 
thing to eat, and wished a pail of water, he could go and 
stand by the guard -line opposite the place, and when 
his turn came out of 1200, could go and get his bucket 
filled. If he wanted wood, he could go and stand at 
another place, and, taking his turn, go out, break off 
some twigs and brush, come in and cook his little pot 
of mush, provided he could borrow something to cook 
it in. If he would attend the calls of nature, no matter 
how pressing, he must wait his turn. It was not an un- 
common sight to see 100 standing in line at each of the 
places named, waiting their turn. 

As soon as we were on the spot. Captain Semple came 
to the senior officer of the prisoners. Colonel Huey, 8th 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 133 

Pennsylvania Cavalry, and informed him that he had 
one hundred wall-tents in the city, which he would send 
up at once for the use of the prisoners, and that he had 
telegraphed to Charleston for a sufficiency to cover all 
the ofiicers, and that " they would do the best they could 
for us." This last was a stereotyped phrase which we 
heard from every Eebel official with whom we had to do. 
Although we should have known better, we concluded 
to wait a few days before we tried to build much of a 
house. A week passed, and seeing no prospect of being 
furnished with the promised tents, and feeling the need 
of some kind of shelter, made, as best we could of the 
pine brush, shanties^ which, though uncomfortable, seem- 
ed better than to lie on the open ground. 

About this time we had a cold storm of two weeks 
duration, raining nearly every day. We were almost 
entirely destitute of blankets or overcoats. Our other 
clothing was poor, and very thin, consisting of a pair 
of pants, often nothing but cotton at that, perhaps made 
from an old commissary meal-sack; a ragged shirt, or 
none at all^ and a coat with the lining torn out, but- 
tons sold off, and patched with many colors; a pair of 
boots or shoes, mended with straps, strings, cloth, any 
thing ; if we had socks, they were patched from top to 
toe with various-colored cloth. Through all of this the 
wind would sweep with a vengeance that kept us shiv- 
ering from morning till night, and from night till morn- 
ing. Our little brush houses were no protection from the 
storm ; our clothing was little better ; we had little wood, 
and could get but a small quantity, and that of second- 
growth green pine ; we were camped on the top of a hill, 
where the wind had a fair sweep at us, and, taking all of 



134 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

these things together, we were about as uncomfortable as 
we could be. 

The ladies at home, " God bless them," did us a kind- 
ness which we shall never forget. Through the Sanitary 
Commission, they sent us several boxes of goods, origin- 
ally designed, no doubt, for a hospital, yet noneHhe less 
acceptable. Upon opening the boxes, we found shirts, 
drawers, towels, pocket-handkerchiefs, a few hospital 
gowns, bed -sacks, and several quilts. These were ju- 
diciously divided among us, giving to each one a tow- 
el, a handkerchief, and either a shirt or a pair of drawers, 
hut not both, else some one would have to go without. 
Although not a tithe of what we needed to make us 
comfortable, yet they did us much good. 

Soon after this the Christian Commission sent us a 
valuable donation in the shape of a box of reading mat- 
ter, books, papers, pamphlets, etc. As soon as word was 
given that they were for distribution, they did not last 
five minutes. All wished to get something that would 
help to pass a lonely hour. 

After about four weeks, the hope of being supplied 
with tents, or any kind of shelter, died out of our hearts, 
and we set about building ourselves some kind of winter- 
quarters, for it was evident we were to stay there till 
spring. The Eebels seemed to have come to the same 
conclusion, and, to enable us to build houses for our- 
selves, brought in for 1200 men eight axes and ten shovels. 
To facilitate matters also, a hind-hearted sutler sold us axes 
for the moderate price of forty-five dollars each, and a 
helve for live dollars. Those who had money bought 
private axes, those who had none had to wait their turn 
for one that the Eebels famished, or depend on borrow- 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 135 

ing. That we might get at the timber, the commandant 
allowed a certain number to be paroled each day. Their 
names were written on a piece of paper, handed to the 
officer of the day, who instructed the guard to pass them 
in and out at their pleasure till night. This worked very 
well for those paroled, but some of the shrewd Yankees 
saw too good an opportunity to escape; watching their 
chances, they would go to a guard who was passing out 
the paroled men, and go out with them ; or, if stopped, 
convince him he had been out before. Passing out, he for- 
got to return, and thus the game went on for several days, 
when it was detected. Then the order was changed, and 
all the paroled men must pass through at a given point. 
Then some of the paroled men who wished to escape would 
go to the officer of the day, take up their parole, come in- 
side, put on a haversack well filled, pass out again by the 
sentinel who had been passing him before, and who was 
ignorant of the fact of his surrendering his parole. That 
trick was finally discovered, and then the paroled men 
were not allowed to come in till night, after being once 
paroled, but would bring their timber to the "guard-line" 
and throw it over, when it would be taken up by com- 
rades inside and carried to their tent. If one wished to 
run away, he would watch his opportunity when the 
guard was not looking, and change off with a paroled 
man, and he in turn would slip over the guard-line when 
there was a crowd. Finally, there were so many escap- 
ing that the paroling was stopped altogether, and we 
could only get wood and building-timber at the stated 
time, when the guard was arranged for that purpose in 
the following manner, viz. : 

Two reliefs of the guard, usually about 80 men, were 



136 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

deployed around a piece of wood each day for a couple 
of hours, and we were allowed to get all the wood we 
could during that time. Some days we could get much^ 
some days but little. This time was usually seized upon 
to " demoralize" the guard, ^. e.,, find one alone, and strike 
a bargain to let you run his beat at night for a consider- 
ation, or, better, let you stray past him now while in the 
woods. In many cases it succeeded. Generally fifty 
dollars, in Confederate money, would buy the best of 
them. A bargain was usually made for a party of five 
or six, and the guard with whom you traded was sure to 
bribe the ones each side of him. Sometimes an arrange- 
ment would be made by which they were to shoot into 
the air after the officers had succeeded in crossing the 
line, thus allaying any suspicion that might arise in case 
they should be caught in the act. A few, determined 
and reckless, attempted to run the guard without any ne- 
gotiation. Many escaped that way; but three or four 
were wounded, and one was killed outright. 

Many, very many more would have attempted to es- 
cape, had they possessed clothing and shoes fit to travel 
in. A frequent dodge was to go and play what was 
called "the hospital game." The members of the hos- 
pital were on parole, and were permitted to come in and 
out just when they chose. Almost every day they came 
in to buy bread at the sutler's, which they would exhibit 
to the guard as a kind of pass, and thus be permitted to 
return. Soon one, who had "escape on the brain," would 
go to the sutler, buy half a dozen loaves of bread, put on 
his overcoat, get a cane, limp up to the guard-line, show 
his bread, pass out, hobble over to the hospital, stay 
around till dark ; suddenly get well, take to the woods, * 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 137 

and bid good-by to prison, till recaptured, at least. This 
succeeded very well, till one day it was overdone and dis- 
covered, after about thirty had escaped. 

While we were trying to build our quarters, it was 
quite amusing to attempt to go through camp. The 
space was very mudi crowded, and no regularity in lay- 
ing it out. Each one built his cabin just where he could 
find a place. There was only one way by which you 
could go straight through the camp, and that was by an 
old road. Houses would go down and up again the same 
day. Whole sections would disappear, and be rebuilt in 
different shape. If you would find a friend, go where he 
did live, and you would find him gone, house and all. It 
was much like a city. We had our friends and few ac- 
quaintances, and beyond this knew nothing of those who 
were our near neighbors. Occasionally we would have a 
fire, and a call for certain " engines ;" but " tear down" was 
our only remedy at such times. Wood was so scarce we 
could not indulge in the luxury of a bonfire very often. 




Hauling Wood, (Jamp Soighum. 



188 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

The labor of building any thing like a comfortable 
cabin was very great, as we had so few tools, and had to 
bring the timber so far, sometimes nearly half a mile. 
About one half had quarters, when we were removed to 
the city. 

A few days after our arrival quite an excitement was 
raised over the discovery of a few grains of gold in a lit- 
tle run near the creek. Old Californians turned out en 
masse^ but, after washing the sand and gravel for a few 
hours, gave it up as a hoax. Our anxiety to find the 
yellow banished the hlues^ for one day at least. 

As the papers had informed us of the nomination of 
Abraham Lincoln for a second term to the Presidency, 
upon consultation of the senior officers from the several 
states, it was determined to hold an election, and, if possi- 
ble, send the returns through to our government. That 
they might get through in time, it was proposed, and 
agreed upon, to hold it on the 17th of October, which was 
accordingly done. Ballot-boxes were improvised^ from a 
starch-box sent from home with "goodies" in it, to the 
whole hat of a '^ fresh fish," and a list posted up, appoint- 
ing the senior officer belonging to the regiment of each 
state as the judge of election. The day passed off quiet- 
ly, considering all things. A bulletin-board was erected 
at head-quarters, and dispatches received from different 
sections were posted for the information of the public. 
The following are some of them : 

"New York, October 17th, 11 A.M. 

" New York is going all riglit up to this hour." 

"October 17th, 12 M. 

" Highly Important from Kansas 1 1 
"The Border Euffians attacked the polls and drove 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 139 

the Free State men away, killing three (3) and wounding 
six (6). Afterward the Free State men assembled, and 
succeeded in dispersing the Euffians, and the state has 
gone Kepublican by a large majority ! ! !" 

"Trenton, N. J., October 17th, 1864, 12 M. 

"Special to the 'Bulletin.' 

" It is rumored that, at a meeting of the citizens of the 
state, it was decided that, unless McClellan was elected 
President, the state would furnish no more 'apple whis- 
ky for the Congress of the United States.' " 

"It is believed that the above is a false rumor, gotten 
up by the Black Eepublicans. — Ed. Bulletin^ 

The following is the official report of the election, com- 
piled by Captain Piggott, 8th Pennsylvania Cavalry, and 
kindly furnished me by Lieutenant Phelps, same regi- 
ment. It is taken from the official record now in my 
possession. 



140 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 






i|||{ 



1. Maine , 

2. New Hampshire 

3. Vermont , 

4. Rhode Island — 

5. Connecticut 

6. Massachusetts..., 

7. New York 

8. New Jersey , 

9. Pennsylvania ..., 

10. Delaware 

11. Maryland 

12. Wes't Virginia..., 

13. Ohio 

l-i. Indiana 

15. Illinois , 

16. Michipjan 

17. Wisconsin 

18. Minnesota 

19. Iowa 

20. Missouri 

21. Kansas 

22. Kentucky 

23. Tennessee 

24. Alabama , 

25. Florida 

26. California 

Total 



25 

7 

29 

13 

34 

43 

171 

25 

187 

3 

21 

19 

142 

72 

79 

40 

19 

5 

36 

10 

2 

13 

26 

1 

1 

1 



20 

7 

29 

13 

35 

44 

173 

23 

187 

2 

21 

19 

144 

72 

80 

36 

19 

5 

36 

10 

2 

15 

31 

1 

1 

1 



25 

7 

28 

13 

31 

38 

142 

19 

152 

3 

19 

18 

127 

61 

71 

30 

18 

5 

36 

10 

2 



26 

1 

1 

1 



25 

7 

28 

13 

35 

42 

144 

20 

161 

2 

20 

18 

132 

64 

73 

28 

19 

5 

36 

10 

2 

1 

31 

1 

1 

1 



1024 



1031 143 



12 I 884 



919 3 



No. of officers in the prison on the day of the election.. 

" Votes cast for President 1167. 

" " Vice-President 1143. 

Scattering Votes 5. 



1382. 



When the result of the election was announced it was 
greeted with hearty cheers, and Captain Semple said he 
would have it published in the city papers, but I did not 
hear of its being done, and I think it was not. For a few 
weeks they permitted us to buy the newspapers, and we 
took some comfort from reading the news. It made us 
feel as though we were not entirely buried out of the 
world after all. It was through this source we first 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 141 

learned of the re-election of President Lincoln, much to 
the joy of our hearts, as readers can judge from the vote 
we gave him. 

About the latter part of this month Captain Semple 
■was superseded in command of the prisoners by Lieuten- 
ant Colonel Means ; but he, being soon placed in com- 
mand of the post at Columbia, a Major Griswold, a rene- 
gade Marylander, who fled south with "Winder at the 
commencement of the war, to assist in destroying our 
government, was placed in command of the prison. I 
think he was one of the most unprincipled men we had 
over us while prisoners. His character will be best illus- 
trated by some of the following incidents. 

At the time when the '' escape fever" ran high, and 
many of the offtcers were leaving, he remarked, in the 
presence of a crowd of prisoners, " I should be very sorry 
to be obliged to open my artillery on the camp, hut^ unless 
this running away is stopped^ I shall certainly do it^ On 
the morning of the 1st of December a cold-blooded mur- 
der was committed by a man named Williams, of Wil- 
liams's Battalion, 3d South Carolina Reserves. I think 
he lived at Kewberry C. H. 

As we had been much crowded for room, in building 
our camp, many of the cabins were placed very near the 
dead line. On the west side, near the north corner, was 
one made under ground. The corner of it was about 
three feet from the dead line. Around this was a path 
along which the officers had been accustomed to pass 
without molestation from the guard. On this morning 
the wood-guard had been thrown out to the one below, 
opposite this point, and officers were passing in and out 
at pleasure. It was not uncommon for an officer to be 



142 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

allowed to cross diagonally the dead line to reach the 
wood -guard. Lieutenant Turbane, of the 66th New 
York Volunteers, came from his quarters near the cen- 
tre of the camp, with an ax in his hand, to go out after 
wood. He started to go down this path, when the guard 
halted him and ordered him back. Without parleying a 
word, he turned around to retrace his steps, when Wil- 
liams shot him in the back, the ball passing completely 
through him, into the tent in front of him. He stagger- 
ed forward a few steps, fell, and died within ten minutes, 
without speaking a word. Those who saw the whole 
transaction testify he was fully six feet inside the dead 
line; that the sentinel must have known his purpose 
in going down that way. There was not the least cause 
to suspect him of attempting to escape. The morn- 
ing was bright and clear, and it was then about ten 
o'clock. He had threatened to shoot several before that 
morning. 

What did Major Griswold do about it? The officer of 
the day relieved the guard, yet without taking away his 
arms or accoutrements. He sauntered along up to head- 
quarters, staid around there a while, and in the afternoon 
was sent hack on guard again^ and posted on the front line. 
As might be expected, we were very much incensed at 
such treatment, and some threats of violence toward the 
murderer were indulged in, in case he should come into 
camp. Knowledge of this came to Major Griswold, and^ 
the next morning^ he sent that sarae MURDERER into carajD^ 
accompanied hy a hody-guard^ to drive out the officers to roll- 
call. As a military act, this was one of the meanest, 
most contemptible insults that could be offered us. 

On the 22d of October they murdered Lieutenant 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. . 143 

Young, 4tli Pennsylvania Cavalry. He was sitting in 
his chair, in the evening of that day, chatting gayly with 
his companions around his little fire. His term of serv- 
ice had expired the day before, and he was telhng his 
messmates of his plans for the future, when "bang" went 
a sentinel's gun, and he fell over into the arms of a com- 
rade. He was shot directly under the right shoulder, his 
back being toward the guard-line. Of course a rush was 
made to the spot, when the guard threatened to shoot again 
if the crowd did not disperse. The lieutenant spoke a 
few words concerning his wound, groaned a few times, 
and was gone. "What will we do?" "Can we stand 
this ?" were questions asked by many. Yet all felt that 
nothing could be done, and we must take every thing as 
patiently as we could. 

The authorities furnished a plain coffin, and the next 
day permitted several of the officers to attend his burial, 

among them Lieutenant , formerly a minister, who 

made a prayer at the grave, and on the following Sabbath 
preached a funeral sermon from 2 Cor., v., 1. The cir- 
cumstance left a gloom upon the entire camp. In this 
connection, I would speak of the deaths of Captain Wen- 
nick, 19th Pennsylvania Cavalry, and Lieutenant Spof- 
ford, of an Illinois regiment, who both died of yellow fe- 
ver a few days after our arrival at Columbia, supposed to 
have been contracted before they left Charleston. Lieu- 
tenant Spoffi)rd was an old prisoner. Captured at Chicka- 
mauga, he spent the winter in Libby ; and, but a few days 
Defore, I had been talking with him of the future. He 
spoke of a wife and child whom he had not seen for near- 
ly three years. They were waiting for him in his West- 
ern home. He talked of the comforts that awaited him 



144 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

on his return from the war. But, alas, wife and child 
await in vain ! And yet not they alone. Over 30,000 
mothers, wives, sisters, fathers, wait in vain for the re- 
turn of their murdered treasures from Belle Isle, Ander- 
sonville, Florence, Salisbury, and other prisons of the 
South. 

As I am in a mournful strain, I will mention one other 
tragical event, which took place on the 8th of December. 

Just at daylight that morning two strangers were dis- 
covered, closely locked, going through the camp, evi- 
dently with the intent of spying out the secret by which 
so many of the officers succeeded in making their escape. 
They had well-nigh succeeded, when the attention of 
some of the prisoners was called to their mysterious ac- 
tions. It was decided they must not be allowed to leave 
camp with the knowledge they possessed, for it would 
prevent the escape of others. " They must be killed at 
once." 

Bring an ax. It was brought, and the deed was done. 

But now how to hide the deed was the question. An 
old well answered the purpose, and into this the bodies 
were thrown, and hastily covered with earth. Eoll-call 
followed soon after, when a search was made by the guard 
for our two friends. After an hour spent in vain, they 
formed a skirmish-line across the camp, drove us all be- 
tween the dead-line and the guard-line, and searched 
again for the missing members of the "chivalric society." 

One of the guards testified positively to seeing them 
inside camp just after daylight, but could tell nothing 
farther. 

As the party came near the well, they discovered some 
fresh earth on the outside, and, upon closer examination, 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 145 

found that all was not right inside of the well. One of 
the party descended to a little excavation in the side of 
it, and, after a few minutes' work, brought to light the 
missing — DOGS, dead hlood-hounch — two of a pack that 
had been brought there on purpose to catch Yankees, 
and were put around the camp every morning to discov- 
er if any ''Yankees" had made fresh tracks for liberty 
during the night. 

As the dogs were dragged out by the guard, their res- 
urrection was greeted with tremendous applause, groans, 
howls, barks, and some even plead that they might be 
left to make soup for dinner, as we had then been with- 
out an issue of meat since we left Charleston. But the 
authorities were relentless, and we had to go without oui- 
" dog soup." Still, we had one consolation, there were 
two less dogs in South Carolina that we knew of 

In the afternoon of that day Captain M came 

to the guard-line with a list of ofiicers in his hand, and 
began to call for them. Visions of prison walls and dun- 
geons rose up before those called for, and it was with 
difficulty some of them could be persuaded to go out. 
Soon, however, it was found they were "sjjeaaZ" ex- 
changes, and then the aspect of the matter changed 
somewhat. 

All of the sick, all of the nurses were included, be- 
sides about eighty others. Several names were called of 
officers who had escaped, and, when it could be done 
without detection, another took their place, signing the 
name of the absent to the parole rather than his own. 

One of those who had been paroled played a very con- 
temptible, mean trick upon an officer who had thus signed 
the name of a brother officer from his own regiment. Ho 

G 



146 SKETCHES OP^ PRISON LIFE. 

had already signed the parole, had also been called out 
with the party to go, and every thing was " all right," 
when this officer stepped up to Major Griswold and in- 
formed him of the facts in the case. It did not better the 
condition of amj one at all, for the officer who reported 
the case was already paroled ; nobody would have taken 
the place of the escaped officer. The exchanged party 
was just one less than it would have been had the case 
not been reported, yet no one was benefited by it. 

The party left the next day about three o'clock. It 
was a terrible cold, windy time to us who remained, yet 
pleasant, I suppose, to those who left. Those who were 
among the fortunate, and chanced to have better clothes 
than comrades who were to stay, very generously made 
a change, leaving the best, and all they possibly could. I 
do not think a blanket was taken by a single individual 
away from the camp. We gave them three hearty cheers 
as they passed out of sight. Quite a number of letters 
were sent out by those who remained, informing their 
friends of their true condition. Others simply gave ad- 
dresses of friends, that those who went out might write 
for them as soon as inside of our lines. " This," said 
the Kebels, "is the beginning of a general exchange, 
and none of you will be here much longer." We de- 
rived some hope from it, yet many were faithless till 
the war was over. 

An amusing and profitable incident transpired in camp 
a little while before this. Our artist has represented it as 
" drawing meat ration." 

A black boar, somewhat wild, came out of the woods 
near us, and by some means crossed the guard-line and 
entered camp. No sooner was he over the dead line 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



147 




Drawing Meat Ration. 



than several officers made for him, with visions of ham 
before their eyes. Porky made the best time he could, 
running toward the centre of the camp. The crowd of 
chasers increased, and Porky put on more steam. Ckibs, 
stones, sticks, and hands were all brought into requisi- 
tion to stop him, though for a while unsuccessful. But, 
alas ! as Porky was born to be eaten, his short race was 
soon run, and he "cZ/ecZ nohhj'' to satisfy the appetites of 
Yankee vandals. 

As a consequence, there was much commotion in camp 
during the chase, which the Eebels seeing, and taking 
the alarm, turned out their regiment of guards, manned 
their artillery, and prepared to quell the insurrection at 
once. But, as soon as the cause of the excitement was 
known, they broke ranks in disgust, over which we had 
a most hearty laugh. It was not an uncommon occur- 
rence for them to turn out the whole guard of infantry 
and artillery over the accidental discharge of a gun, or 



148 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



even loud hallooing in camp would effect the same thing, 
much to our satisfaction. 

At this time about one third of the officers had suc- 
ceeded, by hard work and indomitable energ}^, in building 
places that in part protected them from the inclemency 
of the season. It was now cold, and although we were 
in the " sunny South," yet the ground would freeze nights 
hard enough to bear a horse. Those who had still to live 
in their brash houses suffered very much from the cold. 




Shanties, Columbia. 



A few boxes had been received from home in tolerably 
good condition, and some were indulging in the luxury 
of good clean new clothes, and also of sugar, coffee, and 
some other delicacies. The last we received was in No- 
vember, and the day the officers left a mail was received, 
amono- which were letters addressed to several of the of- 
ficers, stating that our government had revoked the or- 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 149 

der allowing boxes to be sent tlirougli the lines to pris- 
oners, etc. 

"What could it mean?" inquired each one of his 
neighbor. It means " exchange," said the more hopeful. 
"It must mean that," said the sanguine. "Our govern- 
ment don't care for us any more," said the despondent. 
" They have used us all they can, and now they leave us 
to die, like old worn-out mules, and it looks by this or- 
der as though they would prevent us from enjoying again 
even the comforts our friends would send us. "Wait 
and see, before you condemn," said faithful patriotism. 
And we did wait ; oh, how long it seemed. 

After we began to make ourselves a little comfortable, 
we were favored with the following order from General 
Hardee, dated 

"Head-quarters, Department of South Carolina, Georgia, and") 
Florida. Charleston, S. C, November 14, 1864. ) 

" Colonel, — The Lieutenant General directs that 3^ou 
report to these head-quarters the name of every man who 
escapes from your custody. Also, that you notify the 
Federal officers that they must give their parole not to 
attempt to escape, or else they will be confined in a ]pen 
in the same manner that the privates now are. 
" Yery respectfully, your obedient servant, 

" Signed, E. C. Gilchrist, A. A.A.G. 

"To Lieutenant Colonel Means, Commanding Federal) 
Prisoners, Columbia, South Carolina." ) 



150 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



CHAPTER VIII. 

JOLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA — "ASYLUM PRISON." 

True to their promise " that, if we did not stop escap- 
ing, they would put us in a ^9e?2, as the enlisted men 
were," the 11th of December, a cold, cheerless, and windy 
day, an order came for us to be ready to move the fol- 
lowing day to the city. 

The morning of the 12th found us all very busy pack- 
ing up, preparing to move. With unprecedented liber- 
ality, they furnished some wagons to transport our bag- 
gage, and several expresses came np, which were hired 
at exorbitant rates, and used to transport baggage also. 
But little was left in camp, for the wagons were piled 
high as they could carry with poles, pieces of rails, slabs 
split from trees, any thing and every thing that could 
minister to our comfort. 

To us it seemed rather hard to be turned out from 
even as poor quarters as we then had, in midwinter, an^ 
obliged to commence again to make ourselves comforta- 
ble. But there was no help for us, and we were obliged 
to submit. Before we left, however, we had one of the 
grandest sights we had seen for a long time, viz., a 
"camp on fire." About one half of the houses were 
built of pine brush, and were quite dry. These were 
nearly all set on fire, and they did, indeed, look beautiful. 
There had been an express order from Mnjor Griswold 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 151 

not to burn them, but the incendiaries got among tbcm, 
and away they went. 

After tbe wagons were loaded, tbey were formed in 
column, and tbe officers formed also near tbe " dead 
line," preparatory to tbeir marcb tbrougb tbe capital of 
Soutb Carolina. We reacbed tbe city in safety, tbe pris- 
oners following tbe train. 

Probably one of tbe most noticeable features of tbis 
train, and tbat wbicb was tbe cause of tbe most remarks, 
was a " cart" belonging to Colonel Thorp, 1st Kew York 
Dragoons — our commissary. Himself and Lieutenant 
Eoach, one of his messmates, made it with an axe, auger, 
and case-knife. It contained tbe household goods of bis 
mess, and was drawn by himself. Major Penfield, 5tb 
New York Cavalry, Adjutant Goodrich, 85th New York, 
Lieutenant Pitt, 85tb New York, Lieutenant Bradley, Both 
New York, and Lieutenant Abbott, 1st New York Dra- 
goons; said by the prisoners to have made a magnifi- 
cent (mule) team. 

We were marched through tbe principal street of the 
city, yet, compared with Northern cities, it bad the ap- 
pearance of a Sabbath. Men, women, and children look- 
ed out upon us as we passed, indulging in coarse, vulgar 
jest at our expense, that occasionally met our ears. 
When near the centre of the city, some one discovered 
Captain Tabb, of Macon notoriety. His name was called 
out, and, as he was recognized, was greeted with groans 
and hisses by the entire column. One man asked us 
who were drawing the cart " if we were not Sherman's 
wagon-train," and we answered him, " We thought South 
Carolina would see Sherman's train as soon as it wished 
to." 



152 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

We reached the Insane Asylum yard about 8 P.M., 
and after some delay were sent inside. There we found 
for our accommodation two small buildings to be used 
as hospitals, and a shell of another, twenty -four feet 
square, with a part of a roof on. But it was of no use 
to repine or grumble. We must make the best of our 
situation by improving upon it all we could. 

The yard contained about two acres, surrounded by a 
brick wall on three sides ten feet high and two feet 
thick. The fourth side was a board fence, which sepa- 
rated us from the asylum. In the other yard were 
planted two pieces of artillery, and port-holes were cut 
througjh the board fence to allow the muzzles to come 
throus^h in case of action. 

Instead of a platform for sentries to walk on, as at 
Macon, they had sentry-boxes outside of the wall. The 
water arrangements were very good, consisting of six 
large troughs placed in a line, supplied by a h3'drant 
which kept them full all the time. Three of them we 
used for washing purposes, while in the other three the 
water was kept clean for cooking purposes. The water 
was alwa}' s abundant, and of good quality. 

QUARTERS. 

I can not say as much of our quarters in the new 
camp. As before stated, we found a shell of a building 
twentj' -four feet square, standing in the northwest corner- 
of the yard. This was a model of the kind of houses 
we were all to have at once. They would furnish the 
lumber, timber, nails, tools, etc., if we would do the work 
for ourselves. " Give us the materials, and we will make 
the houses," said we all. Each building was to contain 




{} 2 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 155 

tbirtj-six men, to be divided into two rooms, having a 
double fireplace and chimney in the centre. At the 
close of the third day, all of the frames were up for the 
thirty-two buildings necessary for our comfort, and three 
of them covered. Many more would have been done, 
could we have had the materials as promised. The next 
morning Major Griswold informed us the government had 
impressed all the locomotives and cars, and they could get 
no more lumber till they could haul it from the country, 
sixteen miles. I think we got two loads in that way, 
when the necessity of fortifying Columbia became appar- 
ent, and all the teams were impressed for that purpose. 
About once or twice a week, after that, we would get a 
load or two of lumber, so that, when we left Columbia, 
instead of having thirty -two buildings we had thirteen. 

To remedy this in part, they sent in some old tents 
and pieces of tents, which were used to the best advan- 
tage possible, and, by digging holes m the ground, crawl- 
ing under the buildings, and making clay houses, nearly 
all had some place they called " quarters." Yet many, 
very many of them were no better than the open air, for 
they were poor protection against the storm and cold. 
The weather at this time was cold and freezing, our 
clothing was growing thinner and thinner, and it was 
not an unusual thing to find officers walking at all times 
of the night to keep warm. 

The Wood ration was very small indeed, averaging 
a piece about as large and as long as your arm fiom the 
elbow for one man. It was totally insufficient for cook- 
ing purposes, to say nothing of an attempt to keep 
warm by the fire. That was a luxury to be enjoyed 
hereafter. There was a wood screen before the sink: 



156 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 





DiaAviiio' A\ ood, Afejlum Cuuip, SoutU Caioluia 

yet this was all torn down and burned up; every chip 
and stick was picked up, and carefully preserved for fu- 
ture use. There was much suffering all this time for want 
of fuel both to cook with and keep warm. Days that we 
received it at ail, it was usually divided at night by the 
commissaries. Generally a lively time during its di- 
vision. 



RATIONS. 

I did not say any thing about rations in the previous 
chapter, for they were uniform while in Columbia. In 
the first place, they stopped the meat^ and we were one 
hundred and thirty-three days in the city of Columbia^ South 
Carolina^ ivithout a 2'>article of any thing of the meat hind 
being issued to us. In lieu thereof we received daily one 
gill of sorghum,"^ also one pint of coarse corn meal, often 

* Sorghum was made from the Chinese sugar-cane, and that that we 



SKETCHES OF PllISON LIFE. 157 

ground cob and all ; two table-spoonfals of salt for five 
days, two table-spoonfuls of rice for five days, and this 
was ALL for one hundred and thiriy-iliree consecutive days. 
To atone .in part for not giving us meat, they proposed, 
upon our arrival at Columbia, to give us flour. The 
first issue was tolerably fair, and consisted of about a 
pint to a man for five days. The second looked like 
plaster, and was as black as buckwheat flour or rye, and 
looked very much like the sweepings of some mill; even 
this failed, and they gave us an issue of "shorts" from the 
tail-end of the bolt, and then they gave us "bran," and 
that ended the flour issue. Some of the officers suggest- 
ed to the Rebel commissary the propriety of bringing us 
in some cutting -boxes and straiu^ and that would save 
farther issues of bread-stuff at all to us, but the sugges- 
tion was not acted upon. 

To add to our troubles, they neglected to issue us any 
cooking utensils, although they often promised to do so. 
Had we not smuggled' them through from other places, 
and bought others, we would have been compelled to 
have eaten our corn-meal raw. 

Here, as in other places, although much more so, we 
were obliged to borrow and lend. The following " bill 
of fare" was an average of the day's meals at this place. 
Breakfast, hot mush and, sorghum, or corn-meal cakes 
and sorghum ; dinner and supper together, cold mush and 
sorghum, or corn-meal cakes, with a little rice in them, 
once in five days, with sorghum ; dessert, pone and sor- 
ghum (if 3'Ou could borrow a skillet to bake in). 

Thus it went on day after day. The most of the cook- 
sot was tisnally black, sour, bitter, and vci-y fililiy. It gave tlie most of 
us tlie diarrhoea. 



158 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 




Sutler' 3 Establishment. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



159 



ing had to be done at once for the day, for want of wood. 
Those who had money, or could get it, of course fared 
better, being able to buy a little meat, sweet potatoes, 
flour, beans, pepper, etc. 



The following was the 



LIST OF PRICES IN ASYLUM PRISON. 



Sweet potatoes, per bushel. $35 00 

Wheat bread, 6 oz. loaves. , 1 50 

Fresh Beef, lb 4 00 

Pork or Bacon, lb 7 00 

Flour, lb 3 50 

Butter, lb 20 00 

Lard, lb L5 00 

Tea, lb 120 00 

Sugar, brown, lb 18 00 

Coffee, not in market. 

Salt, lb 2 00 

Candles, lb 20 00 

Mutton, very scarce, lb 5 00 

Sole Leather, lb 45 00 

Eggs, per doz 10 00 

Smoking Tobacco, lb 10 00 

Paper, foolscap, per ream, . 225 00 

Envelopes, each 25 



Sheeting, coarse article, yd. $10 00 

Thread, black linen, lb 150 00 

Combs, common, each 5 00 

Tooth-brushes, each 10 00 

Load pencils, each 3 00 

Playing cards, per pack 35 00 

Socks, cotton, very scarce.., 14 00 
Shoes, English army, pair... 100 00 

Pepper, black, lb...". 35 00 

Nutmegs, each 2 50 

Soda,lb 15 00 

Chickens, pair, small.. 10 to 20 00 

Rebel axes, each 45 00 

Ink, you furnish bottle 1 00 

Steel pens, each 25 

Pumpkins, sweet 5 to 8 00 

Peanuts, pint 2 00 



Other things were in like proportion. No doubt many 
will say " that prices in Confederate money are not much 
higher than the same articles would cost in greenbacks 
with us ;" but you must remember at what price we pro- 
cured the value of the money sent us. The following plans 
were the principal ones adopted by the officers to get it. 



MONEY SENT FROM FRIENDS. 

The letter containing the money was first passed into 
the hands of the Rebel quartermaster, opened, the money 
and letter taken out, the amount it contained indorsed 
on the envelope, and that would be sent in to you, and 
your name posted on the bulletin-board, with the amount 
in the quartermaster's hands set opposite your name. 



160 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

But you did not draw the money, or any part of it, from 
the quartermaster, but would give him an order to con- 
vert your money in his hands into Confederate money 
at government rates.^ You could not draw even this 
from him, but you would be obliged to give another or- 
der for the quartermaster to pay over to the sutler the 
Confederate money belonging to you, and he (the sutler), 
in turn, would give you a due-bill on himself, upon which 
you might trade at the prices above named. 

It wiirbe very plain to any one that this plan was 
only one of swindling — a plan for the quartermaster and 
sutler to trade off their worthless currency for gold and 
greenbacks. I do not know the part Greneral Winder 
played in this game, but judge it considerable, from the 
fact that the quartermaster first proposed to pay us our 
gold and silver, and convert the greenbacks only, as 
there was a law against trading in them ; but as soon as 
General Winder arrived, he ordered that we should not 
receive a dollar of United States or Confederate money. 
They claimed that it was necessary to prevent their 
guards from being bribed, and thus allowing us to es- 
cape — a point which certainly was very well for them 
to guard, as there was much danger from it. 

BILLS OF EXCHANGE. 

Another- method of raising the wind was to nego- 

"•^he government rates were always much lower than the same kind 
of currency was selling in the city. The following are about the rates 
paid while we were in yn-ison : 

Gov. Elsewhere.' Gov. Elsewhere. 



Gold 33 47 

" r>7 60 

Silver 27 35 

*' .50 55 



Greenbacks 3^ 10 

20 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 161 

tiatc bills of exchange. The one wishing money would 
draw up a legal bill in duiolicate^ sign both, and indorse 
across one end of each the following ^^ falselioocV^ — 
"This money was loaned to me while a prisoner for 
my own personal use, as a favor. I therefore desire it 
paid.'* An old gentleman by the name of Potter, from 
Charleston, formerly from Ehode Island, followed us to 
Columbia on purpose to buy these bills, to accommodate 
the officers while in trouble, as they were his friends, 
and he had cdiuaijs been a Union man, and, in considera- 
tion of this fact, he proposed to give us two dollars in 
Confederate currency for one dollar in greenbacks, or 
six dollars in Confederate currency yb?- one in gold, while 
at the same time greenbacks were worth fifteen and twen- 
ty for one, and gold was worth and selling at fifty for one. 
There was Unionism with a vengeance for you. All of 
this business had to be done on the sly — Potter leaving 
his currency with one of the officers, who transacted the 
business for him. He at one trip sold over $250,000 of 
his worthless stuff for gold, or its equivalent in green- 
backs, at these rates. These bills were then sent North 
{Iwiv^ I never found out), were presented and paid. We 
were thus enabled to get a little money to buy some- 
thing to eat to keep ourselves from starving. Watches, 
knives, jewelry, boots, hats, buttons, any thing that would 
sell, was parted with to obtain money for this purpose. 

It was no excuse for them to say they did not have it 
for us ; they did have it, and every day they could 
bring in to us and sell at rates one third higher than 
their market. Every five days we would buy more than 
the amount of our rations for that time, thus proving 
conclusively that the rations were not one half that we 



162 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

needed to keep us in health, saying nothing of com- 
fort. 

The following estimate was handed me by Captain 
Cook, who was in the sutler's shop at the time. Eead it, 
and then remember we ate all of this in addition to our 
rations, and then judge what those did who could not 
buy. 

Estimate of Provisions sold every five Days in Asylum Pris- 
on^ Columbia^ South Carolina. 

Sweet Potatoes 35 busliels. 

Bread 4000 loaves. 

Beef, fresh 3450 lbs. 

Pork 1200 lbs. 

Is it any wonder our enlisted men starved to death 
on the Eebel government rations? This is the reason 
why the officers did not look as bad as the men when 
they came out of prison. 

MAIL. 

During the summer we got very little mail till we ar- 
rived at Charleston. There it was more 7'egular ; several 
times we got quite a quantity at Columbia. The usual 
method of distribution was for the adjutant to mount a 
box, stump, steps, or any thing he could find, and call 
off the names, throw the letters into the crowd, and they 
would be passed from one to the other till it reached 
the right one. The call for "letters" would bring out 
the majority of the officers. How anxious have been 
the hearts of us all, while standing with the multitude 
waiting for our names to be called, that we might each 
hear a word from " wife," " mother," "sister," "brother," 
" home," and yet how many times have we turned away, 



SKETCHES OF PllISON LIFE. 165 

after an hour's waiting, without receiving the coveted 
epistle. Often we used to write. Large mails were 
taken out and destroyed^ as we learned afterward by some 
of the officers of Sherman's army, who left us at Charles- 
ton to be exchanged. They were taken to Macon, and 
not permitted to go farther. They testify to having 
seen a dry-goods box of letters, written by the officers 
while in Macon to friends at home, lying open as waste 
paper. Several picked them over, and took out theii- 
own letters and destroyed them. The postage stamps 
had been all taken off, and there they were left. At 
Columbia they told us they sent them as fast as they 
could read them, but they could get very few who could 
read letters, and that delayed them somewhat — a fact 
which will account in part for the failure of friends to 
hear from their husbands, sons, brothers, while in prison. 
As paper and writing material were so high, it was not 
much encouragement to try to write home after these 
facts became known. 

AMUSEMENTS. 

Tlie principal amusement here was furnished by a 
"band" and "glee-club." The band was composed of 
Lieutenant Chandler, first violin ; Lieutenant Manning, 
second violin ; Lieutenant Rockwell, flute ; Major Pratt, 
bass viol. The instruments were bought while we were 
in Charleston, and were furnished by contribution, cost- 
ing some $800 Confederate money. Pleasant evenings 
they would assemble on the stoop of the hospital, and 
discourse sweet music to us for hours at a time. Quite 
often gentlemen and ladies from the city would come up 
to listen, and see the Yankees. 



166 SKETCnES OF PRISON LIFE. 

The "glee-club" was a splendid affair, composed of 
Major Isett, of a Wisconsin regiment, Captain Patterson, 

3d West Virginia Cavalry, Lieut , and Lieutenant 

(names forgotten). 'Twas by them "Sherman's 

March to the Sea" was first sung, bringing down the 
house with tremendous applause. 

MEETINGS. 

Dr. Palmer,* formerly of New Orleans, came in and 
preached two very good sermons for us to large and at- 
tentive audiences, and another minister from the city 
came in once. We had a Bible-class every day at 12 
M., which was well attended, and very interesting and 
profitable. Ilad prayer-meetings on Sabbath evening, 
and also on Thursday evening. While here. Lieutenant 
Henderson, 14th and 15th Illinois Battalion, died, and, 
upon a petition bein'g sent to Major Griswold for per- 
mission for several of his friends to go out with his 
body, and bestow upon him the rites of a Christian 
burial, he refused it on the ground " that it was too far 
to the grave for us to walk, and we could not go." 
Another specimen of Southern chivalry. Matters at this 
time seemed to be growing worse and worse. Many of 
the officers were getting sick, the rations were notorious- 
ly small and poor, our clothing was about all gone, and 
there was no immediate prospect of exchange. We 
learned also that New York and Philadelphia had each 
fitted out a vessel, loaded them with provisions, and sent 
them to the Rebels at Savannah and other places, but 

* The same who prayed at the commencement of the war that the 
'•yellow fever might destroy our men fnster than the bullets." It is said 
he has since repented. — Kd. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 167 

WE United States officers and soldiers in Eebeldom — ivc 
could be passed bj, and not even have the privilege of 
receiving any thing from our friends at home. Surely 
we thought things had come to a strange pass, and a 
committee was appointed to address a letter to President 
Lincoln upon the subject, asking that something might 
be done for us. True, we had heard that each govern- 
ment was to suppl}^ its own prisoners with necessaries, but 
we could not learn that any thing was being done for us. 
The foHowing letter was written by Colonel Thorp, chair- 
man of the committee, and indorsed by all who heard it 
read or saw it. It was the intention to send it through 
the lines by some officer who escaped, but I think it 
never reached our government. 

"Asylum Prison, Columbia, South Carolina,) 
January 25th, 1865. ) 

"To his Excellency Abraham Lincoln,] 
President of the United States : ) 

" Sir, — Having been requested by the Federal officers 
now confined in prison at Columbia, South Carolina, to 
communicate with our government in relation to their 
condition and circumstances, I have the honor to address 
you as follows. That the treatment which Federal offi- 
cers in prison have received at the hands of the Confed- 
erate authorities is well understood at Washington is gen- 
erally presumed and believed. 

"It has been one hundred and twenty (120) days since 
the Confederate authorities have issued us a ration of 
meat of any kind ; and their long-continued barbarity in 
this respect, practiced upon Federal officers held as pris- 
oners, has become intolerable and merciless in the ex- 
treme. 



168 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

"Therefore, possessing as we do, and ever shall, let 
whatever be our fate, a deathless love and devotion for 
our common cause and country, the law of preservation 
imperatively demands that we most respectfully ask and 
pray your excellency to send, through such channels and 
by such means as may be most expedient for our gov- 
ernment, a sufficient supply of shoes, blankets, clothing, 
meat, and bread, to protect twelve hundred (1200) offi- 
cers, many of whom are without sufficient shelter, and 
entirely destitute of shoes and blankets, from the bleat 
winter winds, and relieve them from a gnawing hunger 
more insufferable than a preying virus. 

"The stern but wise policy which seems to dictate a 
longer continuance in prison furnishes a subject for no 
complaint, and all are willing to await deliverance until 
those who administer the laws for millions of freemen 
shall decide it consistent with the exigencies of the serv- 
ice, and compatible with the interests of our govern- 
ment. 

" I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obe- 
dient servant.'' 

CHANGE. 

Not money, but a change of officers who had charge 
inside of the prison. One day the drum beat at three 
o'clock, an unusual hour, and we went out to roll-call, 
and found we had a new adjutant and inspector, a Dutch- 
Frenchman He had been a prisoner in our hands a 
while, having been captured at Gettysburg. Before we 
broke ranks he made us the following laconic speech: 

" Shentlemens, I comes to take command of you. I've 
been in Fort Delaware fifteen months. Your peoples 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 169 

teach me how to behave myself. 1 spects more of you 
than brivates. I does for you all I can. You treats me 
like shentlemen, I treats you like shentlemen. Break 
ranks — march." 

We greeted this with a tremendous cheer, each hoping 
new lords would bring new laws that would better our 
condition; but, alas I they were false hopes, for, after 
about a week's duty, he got " gloriously drunk," quar- 
reled with the surgeon, was arrested and taken to jail, and 
that was the last we heard of him. 

About this time a disease broke out in camp known as 

EXCHANGE ON THE BRAIN. 

It was contagious, and was just as certain to affect a 
prisoner as measles are children. All must have it, not 
once or twice only, but it is liable to return at any time 
with greater or less fury. The premonitory symptoms 
are a slight remembrance of home, thoughts of green- 
backs, visions of turkeys, ham and eggs, beefsteak, veg- 
etables, wheat bread, comfortable quarters, and civilized 
society. If no remedies are applied, in a few days you 
will find the disease in its second stage. The sufferer 
will talk about going home (sometime), being tired of 
sorghum and corn meal, and freely expressing his opin- 
ion thereon ; and, if accustomed to use strong English, 
will indulge in a few denunciatory adjectives. 

If the disease continues its course uninterrupted, you 
will soon find the patient advanced to the third stage, 
from which it usually becomes chronic. He will now 
rave somewhat about his situation and the course of the 
government upon the question of exchange, threatening 
to leave the service the first opportunity^ ; regretting deep- 

H 



170 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

ly that he was ever captured, or (in some cases) ever en- 
tered the service; bitterly denouncing the Kebels and 
all that pertains to them ; saying strong, harsh things 
against the government, Secretary of War, General But- 
ler; till, finally, the fire exhausts itself, and the patient 
goes off and takes a nap, after which he feels better. 

We had many discussions over this subject ^9?^o and 
con. It was urged there was no principle involved ; if 
there had been, how came so many '^ special exchanges" 
to take place ? More or less of them were constantly oc- 
curring, and if the government could exchange forty or 
fifty, could it not allf Did the 7iegro question stop it? 
Had not our government a sufficient number of Rebel 
prisoners, so that they could afford to exchange all our 
white soldiers, and then have a suflScient number of Reb- 
els left as hostages for our colored soldiers? Has the 
government forgotten us? H not, why prevent our 
friends ministering to our necessities? Have our serv- 
ices ceased to be as valuable to our government as before 
we were captured ? Must we remain idle here, while our 
brethren in arms are finishing the rebellion? We en- 
tered the fight boldly, with burning, patriotic hearts ; 
and the inside view of the rebellion, as seen through 
prison bars, has not quenched that fire, although it may 
have smothered a little of it in the hearts of some. Oh 
how much we desired to join our brave comrades who 
were distinguishing themselves on so many bloody fields 
that will be remembered in history ! But no, we must 
remain in masterly inactivity ; must die almost for want 
of something to do. A thousand times over would we 
have preferred the toils, hardships, and exposures of the 
campaign, to the dull, monotonous life in Rebel prisons. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 171 



TUNNELING AGAIN. 

About the middle of January, one morning, we were 
surprised by the officer of the day bringing in a guard, 
and, proceeding directly to one of the tents on the north- 
east side of the camp, drove out the inmates, and com- 
menced searching for a "tunnel," and was rewarded by 
discovering a splendid one nearly completed. Two or 
three nights more, and it would have been ready for use. 
Hopes were again blasted, for we were ordered to remove 
the tent to another part of the camp, and thus the hard 
labor of many nights was unceremoniously destroyed. 

Before night a paper was posted on the hospital, read- 
ing something like the following, viz. : 

"notice! 
" General Winder directs that I inform the Federal 
prisoners under my command that, unless the tunneling 
is stopped, he will cause all the buildings, tents, lumber, 
boards, and shade-trees to be removed from the yard. 

" I would also say that I shall use force for force if any 
attempt is made to injure any prisoner suspected of re- 
porting tunneling at these head-quarters. 

"(Signed), Griswold, 

"Major Commanding Federal Prisoners." 

The reason of inserting the last clause was the suspi- 
cion in camp that one of the prisoners had reported the 
tunnel to the Rebel authorities, and there was talk of 
lynching him on the spot. He was not seen after we 
left Columbia, I believe. 

This threat of Winder's was only the signal for tunnel- 



172 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

ing to commence ; for, at the time we were hurried away 
so unceremoniously, nearly a dozen were in progress, a 
part of them nearly completed, which would let out two 
persons each minute. They were not discovered till aft- 
er we left, and, as "Winder was gone, I suppose the build- 
ings were left standing. 

DEATH OF WINDER. 

The 8th of February we first heard of Winder's 
death, which caused great joy through all the prison 
camps — joy that he could no longer torture Union pris- 
oners. 

He was directly and the immediate cause of all the un- 
necessary suffering among us. He was the commissary 
general of prisoners, and he had it in his power to say 
what they should have to eat, where and what kind of 
quarters they should occupy, and what they should have 
to minister to their comfort. In all the prisons, so far as 
I have been able to learn, there was great rejoicing over 
his death. There was one other noticeable feature in his 
administration. As he was a renegade Baltimorean, he 
selected, as prison officials, Marylanders of his own stamp 
— men who had left their own state, and run into others 
to help destroy the government. 

The following story concerning the cause of Winder's 
death obtained much circulation among the prisoners. I 
do not vouch for the truth of the statement, only the 
story. 

When General Winder was first placed in command of 
the Federal prisoners, he made an arrangement with his 
Satanic Majesty that he {Winder) should have unlimited 
power to torment Union prisoners while the war lasted ; 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 17S 

and, farther, that there should be no "general exchange" 
while he lived ; that when an exchange did take place, 
his work was done, and his master might come and claim 
him. 

Certain it is exchange has taken place, and Winder is 



AN INCIDENT. 

Quite an amusing incident transpired while here in this 
yard one morning, showing how men with high notions 
get taken down sometimes by being made prisoners of 
war. 

An officer from Sherman's army, well uniformed, and 
apparently accustomed to good fare and the conveniences 
of life, came into the prison one morning soon after day- 
light. As he looked upon the ragged, half-naked, and 
hungry specimens of humanity before him, he remarked, 
"He wouldn't live so; he would show prisoners how 
they ought to live." After looking about a while, he 
found his way to the senior officers' quarters, where the 
following conversation took place. 

Capt. Colonel, I am a prisoner, just arrived, and have 
come up to see you, and find out what I must do. 

Col. Yery well, sir ; I shall be happy to do any thing 
for you that I can. 

Capt. Well, I must have a place to live, and I suppose 
the first thing I want is a tent. 

Col. I don't think you will be able to get one, for 
there are a good many officers here before you who 
have not been able to get a particle of shelter as yet. 
If there were any tents to issue, they would have the 
first claim. 



174 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

Capt. But wliere sliall I stay ? 

Col. Any wliere you please, sir. 

Capt "Where shall I sleep nights ? 

Col. In any place you can find -unoccupied. Perhaps 
you can find room under one of those hospitals. They 
will keep the dew ofi" a little. 

Capt But I have no blankets. How will I get along 
in that case ? 

Col. The best way you can, sir. 

Capt. Don't you think they (the Eebels) will give mc 
a pair ? 

Col. I don't think they will. I have never known of 
their doing any such thing. 

Cap)t. "Well, I am hungry ; what shall I do for ra- 
tions ? 

Col. They will issue you some in a couple of days. 

Capt. {Somewhat astonished). What will I do till then? 

Col. Oh, we will divide with you, as we always do 
with fresh fish. 

Capt. Will they give me any thing to draw my rations 
in? 

Col. I don't think they will. I have never known of 
their doing any such thing. 

Cap>t. What will I do, then, for something to put them 
in? 

Col. Tear up your red shirt, drawers, coat-sleeve lin- 
ings — any thing you have in the cloth line about you ; 
or, if you prefer, you can keep your clothes, and go with- 
out rations. 

Capt. Will I get cooking utensils ? 

Col. I don't think you will. The Eebels are not in 
the habit of giving us such things. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 175 

Gapt. What will / do^ then ? 

Col. Borrow of any body you can. There are a few 
cooking utensils in camp, and, when not in use^ you can 
borrow them without difficulty. 

Capt. {Turning away in disgust). Well, I think such 
kind of treatment is rather rough for civilized beings, 
any way. 

Col. That's about the conclusion we have all come to, 
and congratulate you on learning your lesson so quick. 



176 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



CHAPTER IX. 
"homeward bound." 

The month of February was full of rumors to us. 
Upon every breeze was borne tidings of an " exchange" 
soon to take place. We bad heard of the meeting of 
the Peace Commissioners in Hampton Roads, and of its 
failure on the part of the Rebels to gain any advantage 
over our government. Major Griswold told us that the 
failure had only strengthened the bond of union that 
held the South to its work of resistance ; that they were 
to reorganize a campaign for ten years upon an entirely 
new basis; that they were to put 300,000 negro troops 
in the field against us, and they would yet hreah the power 
of the United States government^ and he independent. 

He farther told us that the terms of a general ex- 
change had been agreed upon, and we would all be 
home within a month. Putting these things with the 
report of the debate in our Congress upon the exchange 
question, the statement that " Mr. Wilson had been in- 
formed by the Secretary of War that all obstacles had 
been removed to an exchange of prisoners, we began to 
take some hope. To add to our exchange stock, the 
Rebel adjutant general brought in shortly after a slip 
clipped from one of their papers, stating that "Captain 
Hatch, who accompanied the Peace Commissioners to 
General Grant's headquarters, was notified by General 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 177 

Grrant himself that a general exchange of prisoners would 
take place with as little delay as possible." 

As might be expected, there was much excitement in 
camp over these statements, which so well agreed, "/s it 
irueV^ was asked hundreds of times. 

Our hopes were still farther heightened on the 13th of 
February, when an order came for 600 to be ready to 
move to Charlotte, North Carolina, with the assurance 
that we would remain there but a few days, and then be 
sent on to Eichmond. We also learned from the faith- 
ful negro- that Sherman was approaching Columbia, and 
it was unsafe to keep us longer there. " The old story," 
said we, as we packed up, meanwhile making our arrange- 
ments to escape from the train on its way to Charlotte. 

We left the Asylum Prison-yard the 14th of February, 
bag and baggage, making about the appearance we usu- 
ally did when we moved. Soon after we reached the cars 
it began to rain, turned cold, the rain became sleet, mak- 
ing the trip decidedly uncomfortable. We were stowed 
in box-cars, as usual, forty together. Many of the guards, 
who attempted to ride outside by order of Major Griswold, 
nearly perished, and were finally obliged to come inside. 
The cars were old and rickety, and during the night two 
of them broke down and had to be abandoned. Once 
the train broke, leaving six of the cars on the track, while 
the locomotive ran off to the station, five miles distant, 
before the accident was discovered by the engineer. It 

* This same negro brought in all the papers we had while in Asylum 
Prison. A few days before we left he was caught with one in the toe of 
his shoe. They gave him one hundred lashes, and threatened to kill him 
if he repeated the act. When he told of it he said, while the fire flashed 
from his eyes, "Dey may kill dis nigger, but dey can't make him hate de 
Yankees." 

H2 



178 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

was nearly time for an up express. We had out no tail 
lights, or any thing to show we were in the way, and it 
was only by threatening to leave the train en masse that 
we could persuade them to build a fire on the track to 
warn trains of danger. Fortunately, the '' runaway" came 
back in time to take us out of the way before any acci- 
dents happened. 

As the night was so bad, many who had determined to 
escape were deterred. Such a storm I have seldom seen. 
It was almost impossible to live out in the woods, as one 
escaping would be obliged to. Yet some braved it, the 
majority only to be recaptured after several days and 
nights of starvation and travel. 

We arrived at Charlotte, North Carolina, at four 
o'clock on the afternoon of the 15th, and, disembarking 
in the mud and water, marched three quarters of a mile 
to a little pine grove, which was called by some " Camp 
Necessity," by others " Camp Bacon," for here we re- 
ceived the first meat we had had in over one hundred 
and thirty days. It was also denominated "Camp Ex- 
change," but it received that title after we were inside 
our lines. 

Here we had a few old "A" tents for shelter, otherwise 
there was not the least convenience or preparation for 
our comfort. But we had been so long used to abuse 
we were not much disappointed, and proceeded to make 
ourselves as comfortable as we could. The ground was 
soft and wet, and the water we drank was obtained from 
an old goose-pond. We had been there but a little while 
when Captain Stewart (in whose charge we now were, 
and he was a gentleman) informed us that we would not 
stay there long, for he had just received a communication 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 179 

from Colonel Hoke, commandant of the post, stating that 
he had received a dispatch from Kichmond saying that 
the terms of a "general exchange" had been agreed upon, 
and it would commence in a few days, and, to clinch it, 
he (Colonel Hoke) said he believed it to be true. " An- 
other move, and less guards," said the "old fish," and 
turned away with disgust, while some of the "freshest" 
invested quite largely. 

During the day following Colonel Hoke himself rode 
down to our camp, and had an interview with our senior 
officer. Colonel Shedd, 30th Illinois, in which he reiter- 
ated all he had written to Captain Stewart. Another 
thing that added weight to all this was the fact that the 
Eebel guard that surrounded us was totally inefficient 
and terribly demoralized, yet no effort was made to in- 
crease its efficiency or punish the delinquents. Officers 
could and did escape both day and night while we were 
there. This fact alone kept many back who would have 
escaped had the guards been kept more strict. Nor were 
these facts hidden from the Eebel authorities, for Colonel 
Hoke sent down a request "that Colonel Shedd would 
ask the officers not to straggle up town, as they had a 
very strong police guard, and some of them might get 
into trouble. We were joined here by those left at Co- 
lumbia, so that we were all together again. 

On Sunday the 19th, an order came for 200 to leave 
at 5 P.M., which they did in good spirits, arriving the 
next morning at Greensboro'. 200 others left the next 
morning, passed the first detachment at Greensboro', and 
went on toward Raleigh, the capital of the state. Passed 
it in the night, and arrived at Goldsboro' the next morn- 
ing at four o'clock. We at once disembarked, and built 



180 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

some little fires as best we could, and waited for morning, 
to see what would " turn up." Soon it came, and with 
it a train of 700 of our starved prisoners from Florence 
and Salisbury. They had been sent forward to Wilming- 
ton for exchange, but General Foster, who was conduct- 
ing the campaign there, had had no orders from General 
Grant to receive prisoners at that point, and hence he re- 
fused to entertain the flag of truce the Kebels sent out to 
him, for it was likely to interfere in his capture of Wil- 
mington. Hence they were obliged to come back to 
Goldsboro' again, and await farther orders. 

I wish it were in my power to portray on this page 
the scene of suffering that met us as those men attempted 
to get off the train. They had ridden all night in open 
flat cars, without a particle of shelter or fire. It was in 
February, and a bitter cold, damp night, and, scantily 
clothed as they were, they had suffered beyond account. 
Three had died during the night, and were still on the 
train. Not one of them had a whole garment on, while 
nearly all were destitute of shirts or coats. A ragged or 
patched pair of pants, and a piece of an old blanket, con- 
stituted the wardrobe of the majority. Their faces were 
blackened by the pitch-pine smoke from the fires over 
which they had cooked their rations, while traces of soap 
and water were lost altogether. Hair and beard in their 
natural state. Yet all of this was nothing compared to 
their diseased, starving condition. In short, no words 
can describe their appearance. The sunken eye, the gap- 
ing mouth, the filthy skin, the clothes and head alive 
vnth vermin, the repelling bony contour, all conspired to 
lead to the conclusion that they were the victims of star- 
vation, cruelty, and exposure to a degree unparalleled in 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 181 

the history of humanity. Many of them were unable to 
walk, or stand even, and would fall upon their knees as 
soon as they touched the ground. They informed us 
they had had nothing to eat for twenty-four hours, and 
were suffering from both hunger and thirst. We gath- 
ered every thing we had with us that was eatable or 
wearable, and attempted to take it to them, when the 
guards presented their bayonets to us, with orders to 
have no communication with them whatever. Doubliug 
clothes and rations into one bundle, we pitched them 
over the guards' heads, and oh! such a sight! Never 
were dogs more ravenous for a bone than were those 
poor boys for something to eat and wear. Mother — per- 
haps it was thy only boy, thy pride and stay ; wife — per- 
haps thy husband was among those on his knees scram- 
bling, with all his little remaining strength, to get a mor- 
sel of corn bread ; sister — thy brother was one of those, 
brave and true, a martyr for his country. These were 
the sons, husbands, brothers, that these " chivalric" South- 
rons (Grod save the mark!) would return to us, "wrecks 
only of their former selves." As a specimen, I pulled 
off an old hospital gown, and threw it to one poor fel- 
low who had neither coat, vest, nor shirt. As it struck 
his bare back, he turned around and picked it up. " Put 
it on," said I. He looked at me with a demented stare, 
when I repeated the command. He hugged it to his 
naked breast, and was moving off, when I called to him 
again to "put it on." He seemed to realize for a mo- 
ment that it was something to wear, when he made one 
or two feeble efforts to get his arms through one of the 
sleeves ; but his mind seemed to wander again, and, hug- 
ging it as before, he marched off. Kor was this an iso- 
lated case. 



182 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

They soon marched them oflp out of our sight, and the 
commandant of the post issued an order that none of the 
citizens should visit them, or minister in any way to 
their comfort. Tliree otliers died in attempting to go two 
hundred rods, while more than twenty were obliged to 
fall out from exhaustion ; and these they told us were 
the luell ones. Is it any wonder that, as we stood and 
looked at these brave men who had thus suffered for 
their country, we swore by Him who is just we would 
not leave the service till the rebellion was crushed? 

As they were marching off. Lieutenant Powell, of 
South Carolina, who had them in charge, turned to sev- 
eral of us officers and remarked, "They have generally 
been well treated and well fed, but for a few days past 
they have had rather a hard time of it." 

Well fed and well treated! He lied^ and he knew it. 
The proof of it was too plain to need contradiction. 
Every soldier present was a living witness to the false- 
hood. Their blackened faces, that had not seen soap 
since they had been in the Eebel states, answered against 
it. The sunken cheeks, glassy, protruding eyes, and 
idiotic stare denied the assertion. Every feature, limb, 
organ, and muscle, as well as every garment, were patent 
proofs to the willful lie he had uttered. 

Orders were finally received, and at eight o'clock we 
left for Grreensboro' and Eichmond, to go through the 
lines on the James Eiver; but, on arriving at Ealeigh 
again, we were sent by a down train, containing Captain 
Hatch, who was on his way to Wilmington with a spe- 
cial order from General Grant to General Foster to re- 
ceive us at that point, or one near there that might be 
agreed upon. "We were ordered to remain at Ealeigh 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 183 

till he could be heard from, which it was expected would 
take two or three days. 

We remained on the train till daylight, when we dis- 
covered a large proportion of those we had left at 
Charlotte bivouacked on the bank near us, and during 
the day the rest of them arrived. We found that about 
half of those left at Charlotte had been paroled prepar- 
atory to exchange, and this day and part of the follow- 
ing was spent in making out our papers. 

INCIDENT. 

While waiting here, one of the oflacers, who was not 
feeling well, noticing a fine house near by, walked up 
there to see if he could get a little milk to tempt his ap- 
petite. Entering the house, he very politely asked the 
lady for some milk, stating he was not well, and he 
wished it for his supper. 

Lady. We have nothing for Yankees, for they are our 
enemies, overrunning our country, killing our people, and 
destroying our property. 

Officer. {Taking out a slip of paioer). Will you please 
give me your name ? 

Lady. No, sir. 

Officer. Well, it is of but little matter. I shall be back 
here in a few days, and shall remember the place. 

As he turned to leave he discovered a colored serv- 
ant in the room, and, turning to her, asked her mistress's 
name. 

Lady. Don't you tell him. If you do I will kill you ! 

The of&cer then walked out, but as he was passing out 
of the gate he met a Eebel officer, who tauntingly said to 
him, "You didn't get much in there, did you?" 



184 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

Officer. All right, sir. Matters may change somewhat 
in time. And he related what had passed between the 
woman and himself, and then returned to camp. 

Next morning, soon after daylight, what was his sur- 
prise at receiving a nice pitcher of milk from this same 
lady, with her compliments, and the apology that "the 
milk had been all used up when he called yesterday." 

§wery. Didn't she come? etc. * * * 

A DIABOLICAL PLOT. 

At 3 P.M. we were ordered to Camp Holmes, an old 
Eebel conscript camp two miles from the city. Two 
trains of cars were sent down, loaded, and went up "all 
right." Two hundred of us still remained, when one of 
the trains of platform cars came back to take us up. 
We started, and just as we were leaving the city, passing 
round a curve on an embankment fifty feet high, we ran 
through an open sivitch! How it came open, or who 
opened it, are questions unanswered.* The engine, tend- 
er, and two cars ran off the track ; the engine plowed in 
the bank, tipped up on its side, and stopped iclien it lacked 
only afoot of running down the hank. Had the ground 
been a little harder, a little narrower, or the train running 
a trifle faster, nothing would have saved us from sure 
and certain death — how many, God alone can tell. For- 
tunately, but two or three were hurt, and they not seri- 
ously, simply sprained ankles from jumping. 

We were then obliged to walk to camp, and found it, 

* The developments of the Conspiracy trial give us good reason to be- 
lieve it was a plan to destroy as many as they could of us, of which the 
starvation process was a part. If they would starve men, would they hes- 
itate to murder them by wholesale ? 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



185 



as we had expected, dirty, lousy, filthy, and inconvenient. 
While here we had plenty of "skirmishing" to do, a duty 
that was as necessary, daily ^ as it was to eat. To a "fresh 




akirmishing. 



fish" it seemed rather indelicate, but he soon became as 
bold as any. No class was exempt, neither was any 
place. Libby, Macon, Charleston, cars — all were infest- 
ed with these vermin. A good story is told of General 
Dow while in Libby. An officer, discovering the gen- 
eral with his shirt off, looking it carefully over, accosted 
him with, "General, are you lousy?" 

" No ; but my shirt is !" was the prompt reply. 

We remained here till Monday afternoon, when a train 
came np and took 300, and at 9 P.M. 570 more of ns got 
on and into eight box-cars, while the balance came on the 
next day. At this time, I believe, there were no com- 
plaints about being crowded or of poor accommodations. 



186 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

At 11 30 we found ourselves again at Goldsboro', and we 
camped one and a half miles from the city, on the Wel- 
don Eoad, with the promise that we should go on at eight 
o'clock. However, as we expected, we staid till the next 
day at 5 P.M. There was also a camp of enlisted men 
about a mile from us, and they were suffering all it was 
possible for them to suffer and live. Many of them did 
not live. Some of the "ladies," Grod bless them, loyal 
women of Korth Carolina, heard of the sufferings of these 
poor men, and, regardless of the "order" of the command- 
ant of the post, visited them, ministering to their wants as 
best they could. Some of them came eight miles on foot, 
through the mud and wet. And one old lady and her 
two daughters (a Mrs. Scott, of Wilson County, Black 
Creek District, North Carolina) came in an ox-cart, twen- 
ty miles, to do what they could. I was able to obtain 
only the names of the following. There were others ; let 
them be remembered by every patriot, for they were lia- 
ble to arrest at the time they were there. Mary Ann 
Peacock, Goldsboro', North Carolina; Mary Starling, 
Mary A. "Worrel, Eachel Worrel, Hepsey Jackson, Mar- 
tha Sicer, Pikeville, North Carolina. It may be truly 
said of them, as of one of old, "They have done what they 
could." 

While here we received a magnificent donation of a 
wagon-load of provisions from Snow Hill, North Caro- 
lina. Before it was unloaded, all said, " Send it to the 
enlisted men," and there it went, with a contribution of 
$470 from the officers with it. I would also mention 
that several gentlemen at Ealeigh remembered us kindly 
in the shape of provisions, and prominent among them 
was Governor Holden. 



f'«l''ll'wfllllfllllffl ^i 




SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 189 

We left Goldsboro' at 6 P.M., crowded, piled, jammed 
on the train, inside and out, and, amid songs and cheers, 
started for Wilmington, which was now in our posses- 
sion. Eode all night, and daylight found us standing on 
the track, three miles from Northeast Bridge, fourteen 
miles from Wilmington. This place, we found, was the 
outpost picket-line of the Kebels. At eight o'clock down 
came Colonel Hatch (late captain) on a special train, with 
a white flag flying from his engine. As he ran on to a 
switch, we backed up and passed him, giving him. one 
of our good loyal Union songs. He then took the lead, 
and we followed. All this certainly looked like ex- 
change. As we neared the bridge our expectations be- 
gan to rise, and each one was looking ahead to catch a 
sight, as soon as possible, of something that was not 
"Eebel." "Three cheers for Colonel Mulford and the 
boys in blue," said one, and we gave them with a will. 
As the train came to a stand, all seemed impressed with 
the idea that we must be silent, or the spell would be 
broken. We now disembarked, and, forming in line, 
were counted through the ranks of our soldiers (the es- 
cort about twenty), they presenting arms to us. 

Ko doubt it would have been an interesting sight to 
our friends (it was to us) to see us march through, ragged, 
destitute, hungry, lean, and gaunt, yet feeling well, I as- 
sure you. 

As soon as one passed the line of the soldiers he would 
start on a "double-quick" down the road, swinging his 
piece of a hat (if he had one), and cheer most lustily. 
About a quarter of a mile out they stopped us, to form 
for marching. Here the scene that took place beggars 
description. We laughed, cried, hurraed, hugged, kissed. 



190 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

rolled in the sand, and — rejoiced generally. Many de- 
clared it was the happiest day of their lives. Up to this 
point we had transported all our baggage, and now you 
could see it "high in air," or lying around promiscuous- 
ly ; ration-bags of corn meal, pots, pails, pans, kettles, pie- 
ces of old blankets — all went, and glad were we to leave 
them, too. This was the first time we had seen plenty of 
corn meal since captured. We also cheered for Gener- 
al Grrant, Sherman, Lincoln, Johnson, and General Ex- 
change, all voting that the latter personage was the ''big- 
gest general" of the whole. 

After a little delay, which was necessary to count all 
through, we started for Cape Fear Eiver, where our 
forces were encamped. A mile and a half brought us, 
for the first time, in sight of our flag. As soon as the 
head of the column came in sight of it, it began to cheer, 
which ran down its whole length. 

The 6th Connecticut was encamped on the bank of 
the river, and at the end of the pontoon bridge they had 
erected a bower of evergreens. In the centre of the arch 
was a card, surrounded by a beautiful wreath of ever- 
greens, on which was printed 

" WELCOME, BROTHERS." 

From the centre of this arch were flung out the national 
colors, while their band played 

"Hail to the chief who in triumph advances." 

Cheer followed cheer, and shout followed shout, till we 
reached the river. This we crossed in silence, and pass- 
ed the flags with uncovered heads — many in tears, while 
not a few stepped out of the ranks and kissed the sacred 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 191 

emblem of freedom — a blessed privilege tliey had not 
enjoyed for many long months. 

As we reached the top of the hill, we found the whole 
division turned out with side-arms to meet us, and they 
gave us a hearty welcome. We were marched to a pine 
grove, where we were served with hard bread, cold 
boiled fresh beef, and coffee. Our friends can judge 
what we did with it, for it was a full meal, the first for a 
long time. Dinner, or rather breakfast over, for we had 
been twenty-four hours without food, we sang songs in 
the exuberance of our joy, patriotic, national, and comic, 
and those of us who were able started to march to Wil- 
mington — nine miles ; and such marching ! We made it 
in less than three hours, for each one walked as though 
he feared to be behind, lest he should be " gobbled" by 
some stray Eebel. As we arrived at Wilmington we 
were taken to a " retreat," supplied with supper, and al- 
lowed the freedom of the city. The next day we em- 
barked on board a steamer for Annapolis, which place 
we reached after five days and a comfortable amount of 
sea-sickness. Here we were promptly met by officers 
who did all they could for us, prominent among whom 
was our old friend Uncle Sam. If we had ever sup- 
posed he had forgotten us in our imprisonment, these 
fears were dispelled upon our arrival here. We quickly 
obtained new outfits, and, after a few days, received a 
''leave of absence" for thirty days to visit our friends. 

I trust we were not ungrateful to Him who had 
so safely brought us through all our troubles, and it is 
our earnest wish that, whatever else may befall us, He 
will spare us a return to Kebel prisons. 



192 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



\ 



CHAPTEE X. 

AT ANDERSOXYILLE. 

It is from no unfair motives that I am induced to 
make the following statement of what I saw and experi- 
enced while a prisoner in the hands of the Eebels during 
the spring, summer, and autumn of 1864. I have tried 
to give a truthful account of some of the cruelties and 
sufferings which our poor boys were called to endure 
in filthy, loathsome Southern prisons and hospitals. It 
seems to me there can be no reason for any one to make 
a false report of the miseries we received at the hands 
of our heartless captors and brutal prison-keepers. To 
tell the truth of them is all that is needed to convince 
any reasonable man of their barbarities, and fiendish at- 
tempt to deprive our soldiers, whom the fortune of war 
had thrown into their power, of every comfort and en- 
joyment of life. 

But to my narrative. I was captured April 2d, 1864, 
at Plymouth, North Carolina. It is to the credit of the 
Eebel soldiers whose good fortune it was to capture our 
command, stationed there to hold and defend the place, 
that we were treated with considerable courtesy and kind- 
ness while in their power. 

To my knowledge, no outrages were committed upon 
any of our white troops, though I believe the small ne- 
gro force with us fared very hard. 

Our men were allowed to retain their blankets and 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 193 

overcoats, and all little articles of value which they might 
have upon their persons. Many of the men had about 
them large sums of money, which they were allowed to 
keep. 

From Plymouth a long and wearisome march was 
made to Tarboro', a very pretty town, situated on the 
Neuse, a few miles from Groldsboro'. By the time we ar- 
rived there the men were much fagged and worn out. 
The last day of the march we were without rations, and 
suffered a great deal from hunger and weariness. Soon 
after reaching our camping ground, near the town, ra- 
tions were issued to us. There were a few " cow pease," 
or beans more properly, some corn meal, a small piece of 
bacon, and a very meagre allowance of salt, for each man. 
Some old iron kettles, tins, etc., were provided for us to 
cook our food in, and a small quantity of wood furnished, 
and we managed to prepare a repast which was very pal- 
atable to our well whetted appetites. A system of trad- 
ing was immediately commenced, which was carried on 
for a while very briskly, but was finally prohibited by 
the Rebel authorities. 

Our men would barter away their watches, rings, gold 
pens, pen -holders, pocket-knives, coat - buttons, etc., for 
" Confederate pone cakes," hard bread, and bacon, from 
the Rebels. The most exorbitant prices were demand- 
ed by both parties, our men, however, generally getting 
the best bargain. "We had remained at Tarboro' but a 
few days when orders were received to remove all the 
Union prisoners who could travel to Andersonville, 
Georgia, immediately. We had already suffered much, 
both from hunger and exposure. Many were sick and 
feeble ; all were anxious to leave, and we felt much re- 
^ I 

I GETTYSBURG COLLEGE | 
I . Gettysburg, Pa. ] 



194 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

lief at hearing that preparations had been made to re- 
move us to a pleasanter and more fruitful portion of the 
Confederacy. We were informed that Camp Sumter, the 
prison to which we were going, occupied a delightful lo- 
cality, and also that our food there would be more whole- 
some and plenteous than that which we had yet received. 
Their fair accounts and pleasing stories but increased our 
anxiety to be off, and it was with no little pleasure that, 
on the morning of April 29th, we bade adieu to the 
gloomy field into which we had been turned as so many 
brutes, and marched with quite joyous hearts to the de- 
pot in town. Here we were confined, and crowded by 
forties into small and loathsome box-cars. Besides our 
own enormous numbers, six Eebel guards were stationed 
in each " carriage," a name which I heard applied by a 
foppish young officer to the miserable concern aboard 
which we were literally packed. Of course the Eebels 
occupied the door, and we nearly suffocated. 

Under such circumstances, many of the boys, less san- 
guine and hopeful than others, began to express doubts 
concerning the stories which we had heard, and intimated 
that they were all mere fabrications to deceive us, and 
make it an easier matter to convey us to Camp Sumter. 

Without doubt such was the case. It is certain that 
they made the utmost efforts to get us through to the 
stockade at Andersonville under as small a guard as pos- 
sible. We arrived in Charleston on Sunday morning. 
May 1st. To our great surprise, we found that some of 
the inhabitants of the city were friendly to us. They 
distributed tobacco and cigars among the men, and some 
secretly brought them food. 

Months afterward, some of our suffering, dying boys 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 195 

found inestimable friends in the Sisters of Charity who 
abode in the city. 

Leaving Charleston at an early hour in the afternoon, 
we were hurried on at quite a rapid rate toward Savan- 
nah, Georgia. About six o'clock in the evening it com- 
menced storming very hard, and, being on platform cars, 
we were thoroughly drenched with rain. 

At about nine o'clock we changed cars a short distance 
from Savannah, for Macon, at which place we arrived the 
following day, a little past noon. 

I was much pleased with Macon. It is a handsome 
city, and pleasantly situated on the Ocmulgee Eiver — a 
stream of some importance. It contained a number of 
fine residences, several churches, two or three large iron 
foundries, and a car -factory, I believe. Trees, flowers, 
and gardens presented an appearance not unlike that of 
early summer at home. Almost every thing there was 
looking pleasant and beautiful, and I felt very sad at 
leaving, knowing, as I then did, something of the true 
character of our future abode. Late in the afternoon of 
May 2d we left Macon on our way to Andersonville, 
at which place we arrived some time in the evening. 

Soon after our arrival there we were marched into an 
open field near by, where we remained during the night. 

It being very cold, large fires had been made by the 
Eebel soldiers for our comfort. For this little act of 
kindness we indeed felt very grateful to them. The 
next morning. May 3d, a sinister-looking little foreigner 
came down to us, and, with considerable bluster and 
many oaths, began to form us into " detachments" con- 
taining 270 men each. These "detachments" were sub- 
divided into " messes" of ninety each, and placed under 



196 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

the control of a sergeant, whose duty it was to attend 
"roll-call," drawing rations, etc. 

At length, every thing being ready, we were escorted 
into the prison under a strong guard. 

It is impossible to describe our feelings at this time. 
Every where around us were men in the most abject 
wretchedness and misery. Immediately on our arrival 
among them they began to gather around us, and in a 
very touching manner related the sad story of their suf- 
ferings and wrongs. We could only sympathize with 
them. Beyond that we could do nothing. We knew 
full well that the same cruelties which they had experi- 
enced were in store for us. The prospect before us was 
dark indeed. In the afternoon of the day on which I 
entered the prison I ventured out some distance into the 
camp. Every where was the most unmistakable evi- 
dence of intense suffering and destitution. Hundreds of 
the men were without shelter, and but very few had any 
comfortable clothing. 

'' The supply of wood was very small, scarcely enough 
to cook with, and the poor fellows were obliged to lie, 
night after night, week after week, on the cold, damp 
ground, without even a fire to warm themselves by. 

The Eebels may claim that there was some cause for 
not issuing a sufficient quantity of food to our prisoners 
at Anderson ville, but for not granting us wood enough 
to keep us warm and to cook with there can be no apol- 
ogy. On three sides of the prison there was an im- 
mense woodland, from which all the wood that we need- 
ed could have been provided with very little difficulty. 
The same holds true in regard to shelter. I am per- 
suaded that it was an act of premeditated inhumanity on 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 197 

the part of our enemies not to give us shelter. It would 
have required but a few weeks' time and a few scores of 
hands to have built barracks for our comfortless boys 
there which would have been the means of saving hund- 
reds of precious lives. If the Eebels would have grant- 
ed us even the rough, unhewn logs, and axes to work 
with, we would have built them ourselves. 

The camp at this time was in a most loathsome condi- 
tion. It then covered an area of about fifteen acres, and 
was inclosed by a high stockade, built of pine logs, hewn 
and closely joined together. Upward of twenty feet from 
the stockade was the fatal " dead line," beyond which 
any poor fellow passing was almost certain to be fired 
upon by some of the ever-watchful sentries. 

In the centre of the camp, and extending entirely 
around it, was a broad ravine, which toward the begin- 
ning of summer became one of the filthiest places imag- 
inable, and was one of the chief causes of the vast 
amount of sickness which existed during the months of 
July and August following. About this time, May 10th, 
the average rate of mortality daily was upward of fifteen. 
It afterward rose as high as seventy-five and one hund- 
red. 

Sunday, Mhj 15th, a wretched cripple, who had the 
reputation about camp of being a very dangerous fellow, 
willing, for a double ration, to inform the Eebels of all 
plans made for escape which he might discover or acci- 
dentally hear of, was mortally wounded by a Kebel sen- 
tinel while on duty. For some unknown reason, the 
miserable man purposely passed beyond the dead line. 
The guard ordered him to go back ; he refused to do so, 
and used some insulting language in reply. The sen- 



198 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

try then fired upon him. He fell, horribly wounded, and 
lived only about two hours. 

Sunday, May 22, a little incident of some note occurred 
in camp, to the great satisfaction of the well-disposed. 

It must be confessed that great demoralization prevail- 
ed among the prisoners. Quarrels and fights were of 
frequent occurrence. 

But the worst of all were the murderous deeds perpe- 
trated by a desperate set of fellows, who had banded 
themselves together for the purpose of robbing the de- 
fenseless among them. From the sick and powerless 
they would steal blankets and pails for cooking in ; and 
if a man was known to possess money, he was in danger 
of being deprived of it all, and possibly of his life be- 
sides. This morning one of the heartless scoundrels had 
been caught in the act of stealing from some one of his 
companions, and met with summary punishment. A 
part of his head and beard were shaven, and he was then 
exposed to the view of any who might wish to see him. 
After this he was turned over to the commandant of the 
prison, who immediately released him, but promised the 
men that in the future they might inflict what punish- 
ment they should deem proper on all whom they should 
catch engaged in robbing their comrades. The prime 
cause of all this demoralization among the men was the 
treatment they received at the hands of the Eebels. Had 
the Confederate authorities provided food in sufficient 
quantities for our men, and furnished other necessary 
comforts, it is altogether possible that no such deeds 
would have been committed in the camp ; certainly they 
would have been very rare. 

Toward the close of May our rations were "cut down" 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 201 

of proper food and constant exposure. ISTone can fully 
realize the intense agony, the horrid suspense and wretch- 
edness felt by these unfortunate men, but those who have 
had a like experience. Indeed, their sufferings were be- 
yond description. Only a few could receive medical 
treatment, and that scarcely worth mentioning, while in 
every part of camp were as brave and loyal soldiers as 
any that had ever taken up arms in defense of freedom, 
suffering and dying in a manner that might have shocked 
even the rude sensibilities of an American savage. 
^-^t seemed that, the more bitter our anguish became, 
the more delighted were our fiendish keepers. Not sat- 
isfied with the cruelties inflicted upon us, they even car- 
ried their animosities beyond this life, and declined to 
give a Christian burial to our dead. I will not now lon- 
ger dwell upon this subject. It is too painful to contem- 
plate. 

July 13th, one of the men, in attempting to procure 
some clean water to drink, passed a little beyond the dead 
line, and was fired upon by two of the guards almost si- 
multaneously. Both balls missed him, but took effect 
upon two other men, killing one of them immediately. 

About the middle of July I was fortunate enough to 
make the acquaintance of a most excellent young man 
from Philadelphia, a member of the 7th Pennsylvania E. 
C. Volunteers, Joseph Egalf by name, who was actively 
engaged in caring for our neglected wounded men. From 
'morning till night he went about dressing their wounds 
"ftnd ministering to their wants, and was unremitting in 
his efforts to benefit and comfort them. All in suffering 
had his sympathy and compassion, and his aid, so far as 
it was in his power to render assistance. What finally 

12 



202 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

became of him I do not know, but, should he be living, 
it is hoped something may be done to reward him hand- 
somely for his many acts of love and kindness toward our 
poor boys who were with him at Andersonville. 

I find the following written in my diary under date of 
July 2oth : " While walking in camp this morning, I ob- 
served several poor fellows lying upon the ground, with- 
out shelter, blanket, coat, or even blouse — merely shirt 
and pants to protect them from the bitter cold of the past 
night." There are a great many in camp in the same 
condition, and hundreds who are without shelter, blank- 
et, and overcoat. 

To some it may seem incredible that it should be very 
cold during the night at this season of the year, but such 
was indeed the case. 

It may be asked. What became of the prisoners' cloth- 
ing? I answer that, except in a few instances, it was 
stolen by the Kebels. Many a poor fellow can remember 
how unceremoniously he was stripped of almost every 
thing of value in his possession in an hour after his cap- 
ture. Resistance was useless. To resist was to expose 
one's self to certain death. If a bare command would 
not bring a man out of his new boots, or induce him to 
give up his coat, a loaded pistol pointed at his head 
would. 

July 27th, another of our men was shot. He received 
a horrible wound in the head, and was carried out of 
camp in a dying condition. 

August 4th, still another was shot, receiving a severe 
wound through the body. August 6th, another cold- 
blooded murder was committed. 

One of the men, passing a little too near the stockade, 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 203 

was shot dead by a guard on duty. It had become dan- 
gerous to pass at the regular crossing. The sentinels 
seemed to be more vigilant than ever before in watching 
for opportunities to shoot down our poor unarmed men. 
No one was safe. ISTo warning was given to a thought- 
less intru^r. The first thing one would know of his, ter- 
rible condition after passing the fatal line was a quick, 
sharp report, a groan, and all was over — another mur- 
der committed. About the middle of August the rate 
of mortality was about eight per day. uDiarrhoea and 
scurvy were the chief scourges of the camp. The fear- 
ful work of death was visible every where around us. I 
have frequently seen as many as thirty dead men lying 
in a row at the prison gate to be carried out for burial. 

It was sad, indescribably so, to see these brave men dy- 
ing so far from home and its hallowed associations. No 
fond parents near to speak words of comfort and tender- 
ness. None able to minister to their temporal necessi- 
ties — none who could alleviate their sufferings. Alone 
they must writhe in the agonies of dea.th-^alone to die. 
It was under such circumstances of darkness and misery 
that the shining truths of Christianity shone out before 
men in their unsurpassed glory and heavenly beauty. 
Many a freed, joyous spirit went from that foul, loath- 
some prison to immortal life an^ happiness. 

Thus far only some of the physical sufferings conse- 
quent to our imprisonment have been briefly mentioned ; 
it is now time to refer, for a few moments, to the intense 
mental trials and afflictions which we prisoners experi- 
enced. 

In my diary, under date of August 24th, I find the fol- 
lowing : "I believe the loss of health, exposure to priva- 



204 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

tion, and physical suffering consequent upon the manner 
of life in which we are now compelled to live, are not the 
saddest effects of our present captivity, ^-^ut that which 
is the more lamentable is the mental debility which, un- 
der the present state of things, we must necessarily expe- 
rience." Again, " The finer feelings — that wbteh makes 
more lovely — as social being, love, affection, friendship, 
kindness, and courtesy, are being constantly deadened — 
rooted out from the heart, leaving it in a most woeful con- 
dition." Scarcely an hour in which anxiety about dis- 
tant friends, suspense in regard to the future, and fre- 
quent despair, were not felt. It seems to me that the 
mind must have been in a state of trouble and anxiety 
nearly all the time its frail tenement was suffering from 
confinement and disease. It was almost impossible to 
procure reading matter. Some of the soldiers had Bi- 
bles and Testaments, which were eagerly sought after 
and read by many of the men. 

It was with great difficulty one could think very atten- 
tively about other subjects than home and release from 
imprisonment. A topic for conversation might be intro- 
duced among a squad of men ; perhaps they might talk 
about it for a few moments, but it would soon be drop- 
ped, and home, friends, and possibility or probability of 
exchange would come i^fp for discussion. Men — brave 
men, indeed — became gloomy and despondent. Light 
faded from the once brilliant, fiery eye ; the color disap- 
peared from the manly countenance ; manhood seemed 
to forget itself — the entire man was speedily drifting to- 
ward a fearful ruin. Hope had nearly vanished. The 
mind was laboring under intense agony. 

To some the burden was too much, and they have nev- 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 205 

er recovered from its baneful effects. Others have near- 
ly recovered, but the scars remain. 

September 7th, the removal of the prisoners from Camp 
Sumter to other portions of the Confederacy was com- 
manded. We were induced by the Eebel authorities to 
believe that this unexpected movement was for a general 
exchange. With this belief our men could be sent away 
with only a small force guarding them, which was a con- 
sideration of no little importance with the Kebels just at 
that time. 

Suddenly stricken down with a violent attack of the 
scurvy, I was unable to leave with my detachment, and 
was left with the sick in camp. After suffering several 
days, I managed to get out with the first squad of sick 
which left for Florence, South Carolina. 

I was quite weak and feeble when I arrived at Flor- 
ence, but a change of climate and diet rapidly improved 
my condition, and in a few days I was able to walk about 
without crutches. Soon afterward I was detailed as hos- 
pital steward and paroled. 

From that time till my release, November 80th, my 
treatment was much better than it had been while I w^s 
uat Camp Sumter ; but in regard to that received by the 
thousands of poor fellows in the prison, there was but lit- 
tle apparent change. They suffered from cold and hun- 
ger perhaps more than while at Andersonville. 

Sickness and death prevailed in every section of the 
camp. A few weeks before my release, measures were 
taken to build barracks for the sick. A bakery was also 
established, and a small loaf of wheat bread issued to the 
patients daily. The surgeons in charge seemed to do as 
well as possible with the small resources and means 



206 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

wtiich they possessed. Indeed they were very kind to 
us. and manifested considerable interest in our welfare. 
Some supplies from the United States Sanitary Commis- 
sion were received, and distributed with great care among 
the destitute and needy. So far as I was able to discern 
— and I had many opportunities to observe for myself, 
being privileged to go in and out of the prison at any 
hour during the day — I found that the Rebel authorities 
acted honestly, though perhaps not wisely in all cases, 
in regard to distributing the blankets, shoes, pants, and 
underclothing to our men, which had been provided for 
them by the Sanitary Commission. 

I will here close my accounts of the sufferings of our 
friends. So far as I am concerned personally, I can for- 
give our bitter foes the cruelties which they have inflict- 
ed upon me. I do not desire revenge. That is farthest 
from my heart. Grod will punish them for their evil 
deeds. They have already suffered terribly. I feel that 
all should now try to do whatever they can to narrow 
the breach which exists between them and ourselves. I 
have always been glad our government so nobly declined 
ta resort to retaliation. "We can not afford to be cruel. 
It is our highest honor to reward good for evil. 

The magnanimity of our people is beyond question, 
and our enemies must acknowledge it. Our arms have 
conquered their proud hosts ; our kindness must now 
subdue the enmity of their hearts. We must be neither 
too lenient nor too severe. To the leaders who precipi- 
tated us into four years of bloodshed and war, the se- 
verest punishment which the law can give ; but to the 
poor misguided masses, that clemency which only a no- 
ble people are capable of exercising. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 207 



CHAPTER XI. 

AMONG THE NEGROES. 

We crossed the Saluda Eiver in the morning, and lay 
in the woods till after dark. We then started out to find 
the road which led to Greenville. Crossing an old field, 
and while pa-ssing a gate, we heard some one call out 
''Who's dar?" Supposing it to be a negro, we halted, 
and sent one of our party to see who it might be. It 
was an old negro woman about fifty years of age. As 
the ofi&cer approached her, she said, 

" Ah ! I knows who yous is; yous Yankees 'scape from 
prison. I seed two ob your men two days ago ; dey 
staid at my house all night. I feed um, and dey went 
on dere way in de way you're all gwine." 

"But why," said the officers, "do you feed the Yan- 
kees?" 

"Because dey doing so much for us: we knows dat 
5^ou is 'bout all de friends we hab long time ago — dat 
you is gwine to make us free. I lib in dat old house 
yonder, and takes care of my old mudder, who's now 
'bout hundred year old. You see I am not fit for de 
field no more, so I lib dar, and take care of her now. 
She told me, while I was a little gal, 'bout dat — how dat 
we warnt always gwine to be slaves ; dat de Lord would 
deliver us as he deliber de Mosesites in the wilderness 
grate while ago, and when dis war commenced we tink 



208 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

de time is come. It come berj slow, gentl'men, but den 
we knowa it's comin'." 

Officer. Can you give us something to eat ? 

Negro. I wish I could go and bake you som bread, but 
I goes to meet my old man down to de riber. 

Offix^er, "Very well; can you direct us to the Greenville 
Road? 

Negro. Yes, dat big road up dar; turn to de lef; go 
careful ; make no noise. 

Leaving the old lady, we marched on about three 
miles, when we were suddenly accosted by a good ebony 
gentleman from the side of the road. It was an old ne- 
gro man about forty, who was going to spend the Sab- 
bath with his wife, who was owned on a plantation some 
miles distant from his place of servitude. It will be re- 
membered that slaves were permitted to spend the Sab- 
bath with their families. We halted, and commenced 
conversation with him as follows : 

Officer. To whom do you belong ? 

Negro. Massa G H , sah. 

Officer. Is he a good master, and how does he treat 
you? 

Negro. Well, he did treat us bery well before de war, 
but since dat some of de boys rund away, and he treat 
us bery badly ! 

Officer. And have you ever heard of the Yankees ? 

Negro. Yes, we heard great deal 'bout dem people. 

Massa G tell us great many bad tings 'bout dem, 

but den we can't tell 'bout dat, after all. 

Officer. Did you ever see any of them ? 

Negro. Widout you is some; yous look like um. 

Officer. If we should tell you that we were Yankees, 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 211 

corse she ain't quite so black as I be, but den her muder 
was jest as black a niggah as you eber see. 

By this time we arrived at the corner of the road, and, 
when about to leave, the old man extended his brawny 
hand, saying, " I lebe you here, hoping dat all de black 
people you meet will be kind to you, and dat you will 
hab a safe jorney to your frens." Never did I more fully 
appreciate any blessings which heaven bestowed on me 
than those we received at the hands of old Frank, and 
never did I feel more like saying God bless them, and 
may the good work go on until their entire race shall en- 
joy the blessings of freedom. 

After leaving the old man we marched until about two 
o'clock in the morning, when we met another negro in 
the road, with a large bundle of something under his arm. 
We stopped him, and asked him what he had. He re- 
fused to tell for some time ; but on learning, however, 
that we were Yankees, he unrolled his bundle, and ex- 
posed several fine fat chickens, saying, ''I got dese for a 
Sunday dinner ; but de Yankees are frends to us, we 
frends to dem; now, dem's my words — take um." 

We paid the boy for his chickens, and charged him to 
say nothing of meeting us, and we went on our way re- 
joicing. To justify himself in taking the chickens, he 
said he had had no meat given to him for forty days, and 
that he had lived exclusively on sorghum, sweet potatoes, 
and rice. 

Another instance will suffice to illustrate the point 
which I desire to make. Several days after the above 
transpired, our rations again getting short, we thought it 
expedient to speak to another negro in order to get some. 
As we halted one morning in a piece of woods (it will be 



212 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

remembered that we traveled exclusively at night, to 
avoid detection) to seek protection for the day, we discov- 
ered some negro men in an old field about half a mile 
distant, engaged in plowing. We at once determined to 
avail ourselves of the opportunity, and I was designated 
to go and speak to them, and see if they could do any 
thing for us. Creeping down to the edge of the field, I 
secreted myself in the bushes until they had passed sev- 
eral times round, so as to satisfy myself that no white 
man was with them. Seeing they were all of the sable 
hue, I rapped on the fence with my cane and halted 
them, whereupon one exclaimed, " Gor A'mighty, how 
comes you dar ? Who is ye ? Whar you come from ?" 
I cautioned them to make no noise, and told them I 
wished to talk with one of them, while the others (five in 
number) could go on about their work. They appointed 
a spokesman to talk with me, and the others went up to 
the mules, and on they went. The following conversa- 
tion then passed between us. 

Officer. What kind of a man are 3^ou ? 

Negro. Up and down, sah. 

Officer. What is your name ? 

Negro. My name Phil. 

Officer. To whom do you belong ? 

Negro. To Lieutenant A , sah. 

Officer. Ah ! your master is an officer, then ? 

Negro. Yes, sah. He's been down to de Charleston on 
duty, sah. We all been down dar, banking up 'gainst 
de Yankees. 

Officer. On the fortifications I suppose you mean ? 

Negro. Yes, sah ? 

Officer. Did you hear the Yankee shells, then ? 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 213 

Negro. Hear um ! We gets to feel some ob dem. 
Some ob our boys killed dar ; and some ob massa's com- 
pany. 

Officer, Well, now, Phil, did you ever see a Yankee ? 

Negro. Ko, sab ? 

Officer. I suppose you think they are very bad people ; 
and if you should see one, you would tell your master, 
and have him arrested ? 

Negro. Wo, sah, I no does dat. De Yankees is de 
frends ob de black people. 

Officer. How do you know the Yankees are your 
friends ? 

Negro. Oh, we hear massa talkin' 'bout it. He call um 
d — d abolitionis ; we knows wat dat means. 

Officer. What do you understand by an aholitionist ? 

Negro. Means de — de year ob jubilee am comin', when 
all de black people gwine to be free. 

Officer. Well, Phil, that is a very good definition ; but 
who told you that you were to be made free ? 

Negro. Oh, we gets it. 

Officer. Well, if I should tell you that I was a Yankee, 
would you believe it? 

Negro. I tinks you be, already. 

Officer. You think right. Do you think you could do 
any thing for me ? 

Negro. Do any thing ? What you wants done ? I can 
do ebery ting. 

Officer. I want something to eat; can you get it for 
me, and how many do you think you could feed ? 

Negro. (Somewhat excited.) I could feed an army ob 

you. 

Officer. You are just the boy we have been looking for. 



214 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

And now, if you will promise me upon your honor that 
you will not expose us, and come with me, I will intro- 
duce you to my comrades. 

Negro. I neber tells. (Turning to his comrades.) Boys, 
keep de mules agwine. 

I then, accompanied by the negro, crept cautiously 
back to where my comrades, four in number, were await- 
ing me, and introduced them to my friend Phil. The 
reader can better imagine the scene which followed than 
I can describe it. There was a poor ignorant slave, 
who, notwithstanding the many dreams of liberty which 
had often passed before his mind, was listening with 
breathless anxiety to what his new friends had to say. 
The conversation was about as follows : 

Negro. Is you gwine to make us all free? We tink 
you is. 

Officer. Certainly, P ; the President has proclaimed 

you all free, and we have already liberated about one 
million of your people. 

Negro. You ain't gwine to sell us to Cuba, is you? 
Massa says you is ; we don't b'lieve it's so. 

Officer. No, Phil, we are not going to sell a man of 
you. We are going to make men of you — send your 
children to school, and teach you to read. How would 
you like that ? 

Negro. Larn us to read ] Gror A'mighty, we can lam 
it. 

Offiker. Well, Phil, we will tell you more about this 
some other time. Do you think this a safe place for us 
to-day ? 

Negro. Yes ; if you keeps bery still, it's all right. I 
comes here to-night when I gets through my work. 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 215 

brings you to a better place, and gibs you all de provi- 
sions you wants. Now you keeps still, and I comes all 
right. 

So saying, be bounded away, and well-nigh forgot 
himself in singing 

"De kingdom am a corain', 
And dc year ob jubilee," 

when one of our party called to him, " Stilly Phil, stilly 
He turned around, made a low bow, saying, "Oh yes, 
sah, I forgot," and was soon out of sight. 

The " ivhoa^ ivhoa^ whoa^'' soon announced the fact 
that our friend was with his mule; and then we lay 
down to rest and wait. True to his promise, as night 
came on, our friend Phil came back to us, accompanied 
by his brother, saying, "Well, you all here yet? We 
no forgets you, and you no discobered by any white 
man." 

Officer. No, Phil, we knew you were all right ; but 
who is this you have with you ? 

Negro. Dat's my bruder — he's all right too. What / 
is, he am ; no fears ob him. Come, let's be gwine. 

So saying, he led the way, and we followed for about 
a mile, when we came to an old school-house, and, tak- 
ing two pairs of our old shoes, which had been badly 
worn by the march, promised to get them mended, and 
return to us in two hours " with provisions enough to 
last us a week." 

We now went into the school-house to wait and watch 
during the two long hours. Slowly the time passed off, 
and some of the party began to fear something had hap- 
pened to Phil, when the signal " rap" announced his re- 
turn to us; but, on opening the door, found — not Phi], 



216 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

but another old negro, who, being anxious to talk with a 
"live Yankee," had arranged with Phil to come and 
bring us some provisions, and thus obtain the coveted 
interview. 

He informed us that the shoes would be ready at ten 
o'clock, and, at the same time, holding out a large tin serv- 
er, exclaimed, "Come still; dis ain't Phil, dis is B ; 

but I is .all right. I brings you what we calls a meat pie ; 
you calls it what you wants to; and dis ain't all we's 
gwine to gib you: de oder boys be here soon wid de 
shoes and pervishuns." 

The old man informed us that he was the oldest hand 
on the plantation ; that he had had five children, three 
of whom had been sold off the place; "but now," said 
he, "we tinks de time's comin' when we has better days; 
when we ain't gwine to be sold any more ; when we gits 
pay for work jest like oder folks, and sends de chil'ren to 
school, and de wimens works in de house, and de men 
in de field. Does you tink dat time eber will come, 
massa?" 

Officer, Yes, B ; when this war is over there will 

probably be no more slavery, and then you will be free 
to work for whom you like. 

Negro. Dat's what we tinks ; but massa tells us dat we 
is gwine to be sold to Cuba, whar dey works great deal 
harder dan dey do here. We don't mind de work, but 
den we gets notin' for it — dat's de trouble ; but here 
comes de oder boys wid de shoes. 

The younger negroes then came in, and, in addition to 
the shoes, brought us a pair of stockings, several loaves 
of bread, a basket of sweet potatoes, and a nice quantity 
of baked meat. As it was then late (10 P.M.), there was 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 217 

little time to be lost in words. Packing np again, we 
left the old house, and, accompanied by Phil, started to 
find our direct road again. As we were walking along, 
Phil startled us with the question, "Massa, does you tinks 
you will be able to find de way to Tennessee ? Mighty 
long way dar, and bery crooked road ; and now, massa, 
I tinks you better take a guide wid you, to show you de 
way, and I wants to go wid you. I knows all de way 
from heah to Knoxville, and I wants to be free once be- 
fore I dies." 

Officer. Ko, Phil, your time has not come yet, and al- 
though we would gladly help you to your freedom, yet 
we are only prisoners of war, and liable to be caught any 
hour, and should you be found with us, it would be the 
signal for an indiscriminate hanging of the whole of us. 
Wait patiently a little while longer, and your time of de- 
liverance will certainly come. 

Phil now bade us an affectionate " Good-by, God bless 
yous!" and turned back, while we went on our way re- 
joicing. We traveled very hard that night, laid by the 
next day as usual, and started out the next; but, after 
traveling six miles, I was forced to tarry behind, while 
the others pushed on. My long imprisonment unfitted 
me for such hard work, while the scantiness of the fare 
had reduced my strength so much that I was unable to 
travel with the rest of the party. I lay in the woods till 
daylight ; but, finding myself prostrated with a raging 
fever, accompanied by rheumatism, it was impossible for 
me to proceed. To stay there was to die. I could only 
find a house and give myself up, which I did that fore- 
noon. As I expected, I was sent back to prison, then 
to the hospital, where for five weeks I paid the penalty 



218 SKETCHES OF PEISON LIFE. 

of an attempt to be a free man in a run of fever. But, 
thanks to a merciful Providence, life was spared, and 
I was with the happy ones who were paroled and came 
through the lines on the 1st of March, 1865, having been 
in Rebel prisons twenty months. 



SKETCHES OF PlilSON LIFE. 21^ 



CHAPTER XII. 

IN SEARCH OF LIBERTY. 

"Camp Federal Prisoners, Columbia,) 
South Carolina, January 12, 18G5.) 

''Friend Abbott, — I have the honor of transmitting 
to you the following brief account of the escape, adven- 
tures, and final recapture of our party, and hope it may 
be of some interest to your readers. On the 28th of 
November last. Captain Hays, 95th New York Yoluii- 
teer Infantry, Captain Mooney, 16th New York Yolun- 
teer Cavalry, and myself, started on a tour of adventure 
through Eebeldom, with the hope of finally reaching our 
lines. We had provided ourselves with a few bunches 
of matches, several loaves of bread, a little salt, cofiee, 
and tea, which had been sent us from home ; these, 
with a small tin cup, a tin pail, and a blanket for each 
of us, constituted our supply and baggage train. At 
about two o'clock in the afternoon I was successful in 
passing the guard, and, after remaining in the wood a 
short distance from camp a couple of hours, was joined 
by the other members of the party, who had also, by 
several strategical movements, just been able to make 
good their escape. Our haversacks and blankets were 
safely smuggled through the line by the wood squad. 
All being in readiness, we hastened to put a safe dis- 
tance between us and camp, and to find the direct road 
leading to Lexington Court-house before it was too 



220 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

dark. "We had to move very cautiously, as we were 
hardly beyond sight of the guard, and still very near 
their quarters; however, we were successful. The sun 
was just sinking out of sight as we reached the wood, 
and found a thicket of small pines in which we secreted 
ourselves until dark. After impatiently remaining here 
a few hours we resumed our journey, marching in In- 
dian file, Captain Hays taking the lead. He had just re- 
turned the day before from a similar expedition, having 
been recaptured after an absence of three weeks. We 
found his experience to be of inestimable value to us 
throughout the journey. We had no more than reached 
the road before we came in rather unpleasant proximity 
to an old man with a horse and wagon. He had stopped 
in the road to adjust his load, and the darkness was so 
great, we had come close upon him before either party 
was aware of the presence of the other. We did not 
stop to excuse our sudden appearance, but quickly moved 
on, much in doubt which had been thrown in the great- 
est fright ; he, fearing from our stealthy movements and 
queer appearance that we might be highwaymen, or we, 
for fear he might recognize us as escaped prisoners, and 
report the direction we were taking. A short distance 
farther on we were obliged to flank a house well lighted 
up, standing near the road, in which, from the numerous 
voices we could hear, we thought a large party had 
gathered. While we were passing around through the 
wood for this purpose, a small squad of cavalrymen 
passed us, from whose conversation we were enabled to 
learn that we had taken the direct road to Lexington, 
of which we had been in considerable doubt ; also, that 
we might expect to meet more of their number at any 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 221 

time. In fact, we had not gone over two miles farther 
when we met another party of them, from whom we 
were only able to save ourselves by making a rapid 
flight into a thick wood where they could not follow 
with their horses. They therefore gave up the pursuit 
and passed on, leaving us to get out of the bushes and 
briers as best we could. "We had moved with the great- 
est possible caution, but the sand was so deep in the 
road we were unable to hear them till they rode up 
very near us. "When we got within some three miles 
of Lexington there were numerous fires by the road, 
which we concluded must have been built by soldiers in 
bivouac for the night, who were on their way to Ham- 
burgh. Thinking it rather dangerous to attempt pass- 
ing them, we went into camp, although it wanted several 
hours of morning. This conclusion was the more readi- 
ly accepted by Captain Mooney and myself, for we found 
traveling very tiresome after our long imprisonment on 
scanty rations of corn meal and sorghum ; so, in a large 
wood some distance from the road, we spread our blank- 
ets and lay down to rest until morning, with hearts tru- 
ly thankful that we had made even this short distance 
without being arrested and returned to a Confederate 
prison — the most loathsome and detestably - conducted 
place for the accommodation of human beings known in 
America. At daylight we moved a little farther back 
into the wood, and one of the party started off in search 
of water, but was compelled to return before he could 
find any on account of a hunter, who, with gun and 
dogs, was scournig the wood in which we lay for game. 
This hunter not only prevented our getting water, but 
greatly disturbed the quiet of our minds, keeping us on 



222 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

the move from place to place until the middle of the 
afternoon, when, greatly to our relief, the barking of the 
dogs died away in the distance, and we were again at 
liberty to get water and cook our coffee preparatory to 
the evening march. The experience of this day taught 
us we had made a great mistake in the selection of our 
camp. It was far away from water, and in heavy hard- 
wood timber, in which, at this season of the year, plenty 
of game was to be found, and therefore almost certain to 
be visited by hunters. Afterward we were particular 
in this respect, and generally very fortunate in finding 
thickets of pine near good water. 

" Early in the evening we resumed our march, and by 
nine o'clock had successfully flanked Lexington Court- 
house, and were on the road leading to Wise's Ferry, 
where we proposed to cross the river before morning. 
After traveling a few miles the cloudy darkness broke 
away, and we discovered, through our limited knowl- 
edge of the position of the stars, that we were going in 
the wrong direction. "We had kept too much to the 
right, and the course we were now pursuing would take 
us back to Columbia. We had now evidently traveled 
several miles out of our way, and were considerably per- 
plexed to find out our exact position ; but, as there was 
a house a short distance ahead, we concluded that one 
of the party should go there in search of a negro guide. 
Captain Hays undertook this service, the remaining two 
moving forward to within easy supporting distance, in 
case any alarm should be raised at the house. The skill, 
caution, and success with which he accomplished it proved 
that his previous experience of three weeks had made him 
proficient in the art. Our new guide was the first negro^ 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 223 

and, indeed, the first person we had spoken to since our 
escape. He was a tall, intelligent, fine-looking young 
negro, or rather mulatto, for his regular features and pe- 
culiar tinge of complexion indicated that other than ne- 
gro blood flowed in his veins. On being asked if he 
knew who we were, he quickly replied, ' You are Yan- 
kees. I knew that as soon as I heard this man (pointing 
to Captain Hays) whistle in the yard ; and then his voice 
does not sound like our people's, and he has just such 
blue clothes as I have heard you ims wear. Master tells 
us you are very bad men, and would sell us to Cuba 
if you could catch us, but we don't believe him ;' and, 
with a knowing toss of the head, ' we blacks here know 
more'n they think on,' He was very ready and willing 
to give us all the information he could, which was much 
more than we expected. He told us we were only a few 
miles from the plantation of a gentleman who (we had 
been informed before leaving camp) was a good Union 
man. He said this man was very good to his servants, 
and he had heard that he was opposed to fighting the 
Yankees. We did not let him know that we suspected 
him to be a Union man, for fear we might implicate him, 
but told him we thought we could get provisions of the 
negroes on his plantation, and engaged him to conduct 
us there. Soon after we had started with our guide he 
advised us to stop and see an old colored man who had 
just returned that evening from Columbia, who would 
probably have a late newspaper, which he was in the 
habit of getting whenever he could, and reading the news 
to his fellow-servants who were not so fortunate as to 
possess that acquirement. He thought this old man was 
a powerful 'telligent nigger — knew all about the country, 



224 SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 

the news, the war, and almost every thing else. We had 
not been permitted to see the papers for some time before 
leaving camp, and could not well pass this old man with- 
out giving him a call, especially as he gave promise of 
proving to be really an intelligent contraband ; so call 
we did, and were well paid for our trouble. He not only 
gave us a ^ New South Carolinian^ he had that day pur- 
chased of a newsboy in the city, but repeated all the ru- 
mors, general news, surmises of the neighborhood in re- 
gard to the late movements of General Sherman in Geor- 
gia which he had overheard in conversation between the 
white folks when he happened to be present. His recita- 
tion was nearly as interesting as his newspaper, and, I 
presume, contained quite as reliable information, for he 
told us he had heard the Yankees had beaten the Kebels 
very severely in Georgia, and that is an item of news 
seldom allowed to appear in the columns of Confederate 
newspapers. We found this old man possessed a good 
intellect and some judgment, as well as excellent memo- 
ry, which, with his having taught himself to read, made 
him indeed an exception among his fellow-slaves. He 
said it took him a powerful long time, but, with a little 
assistance received from white children, he had picked 
up his knowledge of reading by his own hard study. 
While we were talking with him, his wife, or the old 
'oman, as he called her, had with great hospitality pre- 
pared for us a supper of hot hoe-cakes, roasted sweet po- 
tatoes, cold roasted opossum, and fresh milk, of which we 
partook with grateful hearts and a good relish. Having 
thanked the old man for his information, and his sable 
companion for her wholesome viands, we took leave of 
them, and followed our guide, who conducted us several 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 225 

miles across the country, the most part through a heavy 
pine forest, and, where no path or road was visible to us, 
he kept as straight forward as if he had been traveling a 
well-beaten path. The negroes appear to be perfectly 
familiar with every stump and tree in the woods in their 
neighborhood. No matter how dense the forest, or how 
close the thicket through which we were obliged to trav- 
el, we always found our negro guides able to pilot us 
through them without losing their way. In a very short 
time we arrived at the residence of the Union planter. 
Not wishing, however, to disturb him in the night, we 
passed on to one of his negro cabins, where a good fire 
was soon kindled for our benefit, before which, lying on 
the floor wrapped in our blankets, we were soon in the 
peaceful enjoyment of welcomed sleep. Just before day- 
light on the morning of the 30th we were awakened by 
one of the colored men, who said he had been watching 
over us all the time we were sleeping for fear something 
might occur whereby we would be detected and returned 
to prison. He showed us a fine pine thicket in which we 
could conceal ourselves during the day, and to which he 
soon brought us a good breakfast. He told us he would 
let his master know we were there, and knew he would 
be pleased to have an interview with us if we desired. 
We had not intended to let any of the servants know we 
thought their master was a Union man, or that we intend- 
ed to call on him, for fear it might be found out by his 
neighbors in the future to his injury, until this man told us 
his master had kept twelve escaped Yankee officers at his 
house only the Sunday before, and had given him permis- 
sion to go with them a short distance as guide ; therefore 
we concluded to have him inform his master of our wish to 

K2 



226 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

have an interview with him. The negroes had given us 
all the information we required, but we were desirous of 
seeing and conversing with a man who, notwithstanding 
his having been born and educated, and now living in 
South Carohna, the hot-bed of secession, still retained his 
love for the government formed by "Washington and his 
patriotic associates. In a short time the servant came 
back, saying his master would come out to us in the aft- 
ernoon, which he did, and also sent us out a large supply 
of provisions. He remained with us several hours, and 
gave us much interesting information about the Union 
men of the South, also the names of a number who lived 
in that part of the state, with permission to inform them, 
in case we should make them a call, that he had named 
them to us as such. He said he had been opposed to se- 
cession from the first, and thought it equally unjust and 
impolitic in the South to attempt the destruction of so 
good and liberal a government, and the dismemberment 
of so powerful and prosperous a nation. He believed 
they had made themselves responsible for all the misery 
and suffering occasioned by this cruel and bloody war by 
firing the first gun on Fort Sumter. In respect to slav- 
ery, he had always regarded it as a local institution, over 
which the state, while a member of the Federal Union, 
had entire jurisdiction, but had always considered it an 
institution which had ever been injurious both to the 
moral, social, and political prosperity of the South, and 
had, therefore, been in favor of a gradual emancipation, 
believing that method would be much the best for both 
master and slave. Like most Southern men, he thought 
the slaves would not be capable of supporting themselves 
when first liberated, and that so many set free in one 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 227 

community at one time would create great disorder and 
suJBfering. On learning that we intended to cross the riv- 
er, he gave us some very valuable information in regard 
to the probable direction that would be taken by a party 
who were going over the next day, with their blood- 
hounds, to hunt for a notorious deserter who had long 
escaped the clutches of the enrolling officers, and fre- 
quently baffled the pursuit of their dogs. He also tend- 
ered us the services of one of his servants to take us 
across the river and conduct us to the main road on the 
other side. He promised to give the servant the neces- 
sary instruction, and told us we might put implicit confi- 
dence in him, as he was a very faithful man ; then, with 
many wishes for the safety and success of our journey, he 
took leave of us. After his departure other members of 
his family visited us, and brought additional supplies, so 
that we were fearful we would be obliged to postpone 
our departure, or abandon part of our provisions for want 
of transportation, as our haversacks and all our pockets 
were already greatly overloaded. 

''Soon after dark we set out for the river with the 
servant, whose services we had gladly accepted from our 
Union friend. As soon as we reached it, torches were 
lighted and preparations made for crossing. We could 
not help remarking the peculiarity of our situation, and 
the many interesting features it presented. Here, on the 
banks of the Saluda, were three Federal officers, fugitives 
from Confederate imprisonment; one held on high a 
blazing pitch-pine torch, which cast far its fitful light out 
on the rippling waters of the river as they went swiftly 
gliding by, and revealed their guide, a large, masculine, 
well-built negro slave, who had succeeded in finding a 



228 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

boat, and now, witli sleeves rolled up, stood bending for- 
ward, a foot on each gunwale, attempting to bail out the 
water with which it was filled, using for the purpose a 
short paddle with which he afterward propelled the boat, 
while the smoke he puffed from the comical short pipe 
he held firmly in his teeth went dancing gajlj about his 
head. "We could but remark, and rejoice over the great 
change made in the laws of our government and the sen- 
timents of the people since the commencement of this 
war. Had this same scene occurred before the war on 
the banks of the Ohio, or even the St. Lawrence, and the 
condition of the parties so changed that this slave, who 
was now risking his life to secure our escape, had been the 
fugitive fleeing from Southern slavery, and we were aid- 
ing or in any way abetting him in that flight, the laws of 
our country and the sentiments of a large class of the 
people would have held us guilty of a high misdemean- 
or ; while now neither the law nor public opinion of 
our country require Northern freemen to become slave- 
catchers for their Southern neighbors, and those who 
would then have been punished for assisting the fugitive 
in his escape are now allowed to fight for his freedom. 

"Our guide having succeeded in clearing his boat, 
which we discovered to be nothing more than a small, 
rude, flat-bottom, with neither seats nor oars, paddled it 
out of the little bay so as to cross above the shoals, and 
then pulled it to the shore and we went on board, seat- 
ing ourselves as best we could, and were soon landed 
safely on the opposite bank. Pursuing our course sev- 
eral miles through swamps and woods, we came to the 
main road leading from Columbia to Newberry Court- 
house. Not needing the services of our guide any far- 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 229 

ther, he returned, and we kept forward until nearly day- 
light, when we went into camp; On the morning of De- 
cember 2d we were not a little surprised at seeing a man 
rise up suddenly by the road and come out to meet us. 
He proved, however, to be Lieutenant Fowler, one of Ma- 
jor Wanzer's party, who escaped from camp about the 
same time we did. He had concealed himself on discov- 
ering the approach of our party, but as soon as we came 
up he recognized and came out to meet us. The remain- 
der of the party were concealed a short distance from 
there, and he was out after provisions, which he had previ- 
ously engaged of the negroes, and the blowing of a horn 
now informed him that they were cooked and ready for 
use. On his telling us that plenty of food could be pro- 
cured for us also, we halted and went into camp. The 
next night we did not start until a late hour, in order to 
allow the other party sufficient time to get several miles 
ahead of us, so that on the morning of the 3d we had 
only reached Jalapa, a distance of nine miles, as the thick 
darkness seen just before day was fast giving place to the 
early light of morning. We left the road, and crossed 
over through the fields some distance to a large barn, 
where one of the party remained to await the early arri- 
val of the negro servants, who the nearly exhausted state 
of our haversacks warned us it was time to consult. The 
negroes soon came, and he was successful in making him- 
self known to one of them, who agreed to furnish us with 
provisions some time during the day. While they were 
talking, the negro recognized his master's voice at the 
barn, and told him to conceal himself immediately ; he 
succeeded in doing so, and in gaining the rear of an old, 
unoccupied house in which the other two had taken ref- 



230 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

uge, when we all made a rapid flight for the woods, and 
were not tardy in placing a long distance between us, and 
thought our successful escape well rewarded us for the 
loss of a good breakfast — therefore patiently endured the 
many loud complainings of an unappeased appetite. 

" The morning of the 4th of December found us com- 
fortably stowed away in a shuck barn on the plantation 
of Mr. Little. Our colored friends had supplied us with 
all necessary food and information, and at daylight had 
concealed us in the barn. We had made a long march 
during the night, and had a delightful rest during most 
of the day, although the perfect quiet of our minds was 
several times greatly disturbed by the sudden appearance 
of Mr. Little at the barn. We kept perfectly quiet, not 
moving or rustling even a single corn-htisk that conceal- 
ed us, hardly daring to breathe for fear we would make 
known our place of concealment, and he passed by, little 
suspecting the pile before him was any thing else than it 
appeared, a pile of husks. Several times during the day 
the servants smuggled provisions out to us, and at night 
provided a large supply for the journey. They informed 
us that, some miles ahead, the people, on learning of the 
escape of several Federal officers from Columbia, had es- 
tablished a picket on the road ; and the negroes, hearing 
of it through their masters, had formed a counter-picket 
on the road below them, so as to apprise the officers and 
conduct them around the picket kept by their masters. 
The negroes said they thought it their duty to do all they 
could for the Yankees, since Massa Lincum and the Yan- 
kees were doing so much for them, and thought they 
could watch as many nights as their masters. We were 
safely conducted around the pickets, and on the morning 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 231 

of the 5tli camped in a wood a short distance from 
Young's Store. 

" We resumed our journey early on the night of the 
5th, but had not traveled many miles before we heard 
the heavy and loud talking of an approaching party. 
We quickly concealed ourselves among the bushes by 
the side of the road, and were much surprised, as they 
passed by, to learn from their conversation that part of 
their number were some of our fellow-officers, who had 
just been recaptured, and the remainder were their es- 
cort. The negroes soon after informed us that four offi- 
cers had been recaptured through the ignorance of a half- 
witted negro to whom they had applied for provisions. 
On traveling a short distance farther we suddenly came 
up to a solitary horseman, who, on meeting and discover- 
ing who we were, attempted to halt us ; but, seeing that 
we paid no particular regard to his urgent invitation to 
stop, rode off, and a couple of hours later we were not 
surprised at hearing several horsemen rapidly riding up 
in our rear. However, as we expected to be pursued, we 
kept a good look-out, and had no great trouble in shun- 
ning them, and soon after went into camp. The next 
night we concluded not to travel, as the negroes told us 
this party had informed the whole neighborhood that we 
were somewhere in their midst. We would not trust our- 
selves in a building, but laid out in the woods, although 
we had a cold, drenching rain-storm during nearly the 
whole day and night. 

'' On the morning of December the 8th we arrived in 
the neighborhood of Greenville Court-house, and stopped 
at a negro cabin near the town, where, on account of a 
very severe storm of snow and sleet, we remained until 



232 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

the evening of the 11th. For our purpose this place was 
very favorable. The cabin was some distance from the 
dwelling of the planter, and was only occupied by one 
person, he an aged colored man, who, with a hospitality 
that would cause many of us more intelligent and fortu- 
nate whites to blush, welcomed our arrival, and freely 
shared with us his small allowance of meat and corn 
meal. He said his wife had been sold, and taken away 
some thirty or forty miles, and their children had been 
taken away so far they had lost all traces of them. We 
found him engaged braiding a basket for a Christmas 
present to his wife. One would think, from the cheerful 
manner he chanted a lively negro air, as he nimbly wove 
the braid, that he was as happy as any young lover in an- 
ticipation of visiting his lady love. Ilis cabin was very 
open and uncomfortable, affording but little shelter from 
the piercing storm of wind and sleet that raged without ; 
but, rolled in our blankets and stretched out on the floor, 
with a good hickory fire burning in the capacious fire- 
place at our feet, Ave were able to pass the night quite 
comfortably. During the day we laid secreted among 
the corn-husks in a small J^arn not far from the cabin. 
At night the neighboring negroes would bring us provi- 
sions, and an old colored man, who appeared to be the 
particular friend of our host, would bring us a hot dinner 
each day — excellent dinners they were, too. At this we 
were not a little surprised, until he told us his master was 
off to the war, and his old woman was cook for their 
master, so he could get whatever food he wished, and do 
about as he pleased. The Southern slave, though honest 
in most respects, especially with his fellow-slaves, will 
have whatever he desires, if his master's kitchen, cellar, or 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 233 

lien-roost contains it, and he is able to extract it therefrom. 
Nor is he any more scrupulous about his labor. With 
no interest to stimulate him to action, he nods over his 
hoe, and sleeps away the day at the plow, whenever the 
vigilant eye of the overseer will permit. But at night he 
is to be found up at almost all hours, at work for himself 
or visiting with his companions. They are not watched 
so closely now as they were before the war. Then, if 
found by the patrol away from their plantation without 
a written pass from their master, they would be arrested 
and whipped. But now, the negroes say, ' the Yankees 
are giving the Southern whites something to do besides 
standing over them with the whip.' We were much 
amused hearing the negroes give their views of the war. 
They have some very peculiar opinions about it, but in 
general are well informed, at least much better than we 
expected to find them. They had received horrible de- 
scriptions of the climate and people of Cuba, and had 
been told by their masters, ' the Yankees, if they could 
catch them or entice them away, would sell them to the 
State of Cuba as slaves.' They did not exactly believe 
it, but I noticed they were very desirous of knowing all 
about it. 

" On the evening of the 9th our party was happily 
augmented by the arrival of Lieutenant Murphy, 97th 
'New York Volunteers, and Captain Pennypacker, 14th 
Pennsylvania Cavalry, who, uniting their fortunes with 
ours, continued to move with us until we were finally 
recaptured. When we went to our hiding-place among 
the corn-husks on the morning of the 10th, our surprise 
can hardly be imagined at finding it already occupied. 
Major Wanzer and his party of four other ofiicers had 



234 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

been directed here by the negroes, and had arrived just 
before day and concealed themselves in the barn. "VYe 
surprised and awakened them by throwing our blankets 
"up in their midst on the loft. They could not conjecture 
what or who was about to appear to them until we 
climbed up the side, and they saw us, with heads peering 
above the beams, looking down in amazement on them ; 
then they recognized and sprang forward to meet and 
greet us, all laughing heartily over our mutually happy 
surprise. After flanking the town of Greenville on the 
evening of the 11th, we kept a little north of a westerly 
course. The snow in the roads had nearly all been worn 
away during the day, but it was very rough and hard. 
The night was bitter cold, so that, on going into camp the 
next morning, we found ourselves nearly exhausted with 
cold, hunger, and fatigue. After working long and dili- 
gently with the wet wood we had gathered from under the 
snow, we succeeded in kindling a fire, around which we 
were soon lying asleep. The evening of the 14th we ar- 
rived in the neighborhood of Wallhollow, where we were 
supplied with provisions by a white woman. One of our 
party went to her dwelling, supposing it to be a negro 
cabin. It was a small log-cabin, similar to those occu- 
pied by the negroes. On learning that her husband was 
a conscript, and also a prisoner at the North, he made 
himself known, and she gave us all the aid in her power. 
She had a large family of small children, who depended 
on her labor for support. Her husband being a conscript, 
she received none of the benefits of the relief committee. 
If he had volunteered, she would have been able to pur- 
chase provisions at government prices, which generally 
were but a trifle in comparison to the market prices ; she 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 235 

would also have received other needful assistance from 
that institution. We had to give her money, and she 
was obliged to go out and purchase meal before she could 
furnish our supper. An old negro brought us a large 
piece of fresh pork, which, with the widow's hoe-cake, 
made us an excellent repast. Here we were again joined 
by Captain Pierce, 3d New York Cavalry, and Lieuten- 
ant Fowler, — New Jersey Infantry, of Major Wanzer's 
party. The major and the other two o{ his party had 
been captured a short distance back, and they had now 
come up to join us. This addition increased our number 
to seven. 

" On the evening of the loth we were safely conduct- 
ed around the town by a colored man, who had been pro- 
cured for that purpose by the white woman with whom 
we stopped. We had the name of a Union man in the 
town, but he happened to be absent on business, and we 
were not able to wait for him. On our return through 
this town we found a strong Union element in it. When 
we had marched about four miles from the village we 
came to the foot of the mountains. The first range is 
called by the negroes Stump-house Mountain. Up these 
we now commenced to wind our way. From the time 
we struck into the mountains until we were recaptured 
near Hiwassa, Town County, Greorgia, we had traveled 
over forty -five miles in nearly a westerly direction 
through them, and were told by the citizens we would 
have had to travel over twenty -five miles farther before 
we would have been entirely through them. During the 
night of the 16th we were obliged to ford the Tugalo 
River. It is the principal fork of the Savannah, and 
forms the boundary between South Carolina and Geor- 



236 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

gia. Its waters were a little above waist deep, and were 
very cold and rapid, so that the crossing was both dan- 
gerous and unpleasant, especially as the night was dark, 
and we had our clothing, haversacks, etc., to carry on our 
sholuders high out of the water. The crossing, however, 
was made without accident. That same night we were 
obliged to cross two other large streams, one of them as 
many as seven times. Occasionally we would find a log 
to walk on, but generally were obliged to cross by fording. 
Whem we had reached the summit of the Blue Eidge, we 
all seated ourselves, lighted our pipes, and enjoyed a 
good, quiet, and peaceful smoke. This was the greatest 
feast we could afford, for our haversack contained but a 
little piece of broiled goose, the remnant of the evening's 
meal. The people in that section were generally very 
poor, and owned no negroes. We missed the assistance 
of the slaves very much. Large numbers of wild turkeys, 
foxes, and squirrels, together with some bears and deer, 
are to be found here, and occasionally an Indian family, 
still living among these mountains, secure from the steady 
advance of civilization. We had no trouble in finding 
among the ravines good places of concealment, where we 
could keep a fire all day. Often during the day we 
would leave our hiding-place and stealthily ascend the 
nearest mountain peak, from which we could look forth 
and enjoy the delightful and magnificent scenery which 
on every side lay spread out before us. But these fine 
scenes would not appease our craving appetites. We suf- 
fered greatly for the want of food. We tried to procure 
provisions at a great many cabins, but were unable to get 
even a little corn meal, although we offered to pay for it. 
Some would tell us they lived a long way from the mill, 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 237 

and had only enough for their breakfast. Others would 
say they had neither flour nor meal of any kind ; that 
the roads were so bad they had not been to mill, and 
were obliged to depend on what game they could bring 
down in the woods. 

'' On the night of the 18th the whole party, except 
Lieutenant Fowler, were recaptured near Hiwassa, Geor- 
gia, by the neglect of one of the party not keeping watch 
outside a house to which two of the others had gone for 
food. We were recaptured at the house of Captain John 
Cornby by himself and his neighbors, whom he had sent 
his children out to call in for that purpose. Both he and 
his family treated us kindly, giving us a good supper 
and breakfast. At nine o'clock the next morning we 
were started back through the mountains over the same 
road we had come. When we arrived at Clayton we 
were delivered to Captain Singleton, who also treated us 
kindly, keeping us a day and a night at his own dwell- 
ing, trusting to our word of honor not to attempt an 
escape. This we preferred doing to being locked up in 
a county jail. Although the captain himself was a gen- 
tleman, the escort he gave us were neither gentlemen nor 
soldiers. By their fiendish treatment of us, they forfeited 
all right to be regarded as either. We were not over ten 
miles from the captain's residence, when they not very 
politely invited us to exchange our clothing for theirs, 
also to give up the several other articles we had about 
our persons. On our objecting to this arrangement, they 
informed us they would shoot us if we did not comply 
with their request. This they had threatened several 
times, and were as often refused, when they conducted us 
to some very large and deep holes, dug by a mining com- 



238 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

pany in search of copper, into whicb. they told us they 
would throw us after having shot us, as they had threat- 
ened. These caves were up in the mountains, far from 
any human habitation, and we could tell by their man- 
ner that they had decided on what to do with us, and that 
this was the last time they intended to make peaceful 
offers to us ; so we concluded to part with the articles 
they desired. After this we had no great trouble with 
them. However, they watched us closely, giving us no 
chance to escape. Captain Hays succeeded in jumping 
through a small window, and getting a short distance 
from a house where we stopped over night, but their pur- 
suit of him was so vigorous that he was obliged to give 
himself up to them again. On our arrival at Wallhol- 
low we were treated kindly by both soldiers and citi- 
zens. The surgeon of the post requested the provost 
marshal, to whom we had been delivered, to allow us to 
stay with him at his hospital. His request was granted, 
and we had an excellent supper and breakfast, and clean 
floor to sleep on, with plenty of woo^ to keep the fire 
burning through the night. At this place we took the 
cars for Anderson, where we arrived on the evening of 
the 24th, and remained in the jail until the morning of 
the 26th, when we again went aboard of the cars, and 
arrived late in the evening at Columbia. Here we re- 
mained over night in jail, and on the morning of the 27th 
were taken up to camp, after an absence of four weeks 
and one day. 

" I have the honor, lieutenant, to remain your humble 
servant, Major ." 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 239 



CHAPTER XIII. 

"in the hospital" at CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA. 

'' My name is A. F. Tipton, of the 8th Iowa Cavahy. 
I was taken sick at the work-house, and sent to the hos- 
pital August 25th, 1864, at Rikersville, four miles from 
the central part of the city of Charleston. My disease 
was chronic diarrhoea. I had a tolerably good bed, not 
over and above clean. I was there till the 9th of Octo- 
ber, and my sheets were changed but once^ and that was 
a sample of the sheet-changing. They pretended to clean 
the hospital once a week, but it was oftener two. The 
rations were most miserable, and consisted of corn bread, 
rice, grits,* and occasionally a little beef. The bread 
was made of water and meal, half baked. The rice and 
grits were never well cooked, and always so badly 
smoked that a sick man could hardly eat them at all. 
Many were almost starved for want of good wholesome 
food. Dr. Todd, the surgeon in charge, said it was im- 
possible to get comforts for us, for the authorities ivould 
not permit them. The hospital was an old German fair 
garden, and contained four wards. The average number 
of deaths in each ward was from six to ten every twen- 
ty-four hours. They usually did not bring men there 
till they were almost dead. I have seen them bring in 
our soldiers, and, after washing and putting them to bed, 

* Grits are cracked corn, or what some people call "sa/??;?." 



240 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

leave them till morning. It was not an uncommon thing 
to find five or six of them dead in their beds at daylight. 
Sometimes they would be almost black from yellow fe- 
ver before they would remove them to the hospital. 
One man, belonging to the 8th New York Cavalry, said 
a Eebel officer kicked him while attempting to get on 
the cars because he did not move faster, and at the time 
'he was too weak to do more. The doctor said his death 
was caused by the kick. Many more would have died 
but for the kindness of the 'Sisters of Charity,' who 
visited us occasionally, and, in part, supplied our wants. 
The hospital steward, Sanders, was a perfect brute. He 
called us d — d Yankees, and said the more of us they 
killed in the hospital the fewer there would be to shoot 
after we were exchanged. At one time the ' Sisters of 
Charity' came with a few delicacies for us. The stew- 
ard asked them why they did not take them to their 
(Rebel) hospital. They replied that their men had 
friends to care for them, while these had none, and many 
of them were depending for life upon some extra help. 
He went into a rage, and ordered them off, not permit- 
ting them to do any thing for us, and threatened to con- 
fiscate all they had if they came there again." 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 241 



CHAPTER XIY. 

ANADVB^NTURE. 

Thrilling Adventures of Lieutenant Francis Murphy^ Com- 
pany " 6^," %lth Regiment New York Volunteers^ who es- 
caped from Prison at Columbia, South Carolina, Novem- 
ber 28th, 1864, 171 company with Captains Pennypacker 
and Ottinger, as related by himself 

"We left camp on the night of the 28th of November, 
and went directly south until we struck the Augusta 
and Columbia turnpike, one mile from camp. We then 
turned westward in the direction of Lexington Court- 
house. On traveling about three miles we were some- 
what surprised at seeing a camp-fire in front of us on 
the road-side. After reconnoitring the place closely, we 
discovered it to be a wagon-camp. The men were at 
supper. After carefully flanking it, we got on the road 
again, and continued our journey with caution. After 
traveling some four miles farther, we heard a great noise 
in front of us. Our hearts beat quick ; could not think 
what it was ; still we went on, and at last discovered it to 
be a negro singing-school. Some fifty negroes were 
there learning to sing. From the noise they made, w% 
thought all the men and hounds in South Carolina were 
after us ; but, after satisfying ourselves of what it was, we 
went on a little farther, and halted to get some water. 
All of a sudden two cavalrymen rode up. We had just 

L 



242 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

time to drop down in the water. The horses saw us and 
were frightened, but the riders, supposing it the fault of 
the horses, whipped them severely and went on, to our 
great satisfaction. After that we went on without inter- 
ruption, passing through Lexington Court-house, and at 
daylight found ourselves four miles west of the court- 
house, where we hid ourselgres in a swamp for the day. 

"November 29th. After resting all day, to-night we set 
out again, and after traveling about four miles came on 
another camp-fire. We examined it carefully, saw the 
horses around, so flanked it, and got on the road again. 
Some half a mile in advance of the camp we heard 
hounds and men in the woods to the south of us, but, 
supposing them to be negroes, we went on ; were soon 
halted by two men — one a major, the other a captain, 
who were in ambuscade. They were in charge of the 
camp we just passed, and belonged to the hunting party. 
They were detailed to collect the government ' tax in 
kind ;' told us that all those camps we passed were 
camps of ' tax- wagons' that were collecting government 
tax, and bringing it to Columbia. After questioning us 
as to who we were, and from where we came, said they 
must return with us to headquarters at Columbia. They 
then took us to their camp one half mile back. Seeing 
we were prisoners again, we thought we might make the 
best of it, so entered freely into conversation on different 
subjects, and passed the night quite pleasantly. We 
lold them of our long imprisonment, and of all we had 
suffered while in prison. They sympathized with us 
much, and said they were sorry to hear it; wished the 
war would soon end, etc., to all of which we agreed. As 
luck would have it, our captors proved to be gentlemen. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 243 

They treated us kindly, and after breakfast very gener- 
ously set us at liberty. They gave us valuable informa- 
tion, and wished we might get home safely. 

"November 30th. We again resumed our journey, 
and, after traveling about four miles, ran almost on to a 
hunting-party, who seemed to occupy the road right in 
front of us ; so, lest we might fall into the hands of the 
Philistines, we concluded to flank the hunting-party, but 
in doing so we lost our course, and next morning found 
ourselves as far from the place of destination as when we 
started; however, we lay down to sleep, as it was not 
yet quite daylight. I had fallen fast asleep, and was 
dreaming of home and friends, feeling happy in my im- 
aginations, when I was suddenly aroused by a wild yell. 
To my great surprise, I saw a man with a fowling-piece 
in his hand, with a blazing fire on his back, and a large 
dog at his feet. While I was meditating as to whether 
this was real or imaginary, he advanced toward me to 
within ten paces, and gave another prodigious yell, look- 
ing, as I thought, right at m'e. Oh ! what a spectacle to 
see in the midst of the wild woods, and just awakened 
from sleep. My very heart almost jumped out of my 
mouth. In a moment he changed his direction, and went 
off without seeing us. I afterward learned that this was 
the custom of hunting the coon at night in South Caroli- 
na. Shortly afterward the sun made his appearance, 
proclaiming day, which allayed all our fears, and we 
went to rest for the day. Toward sundown I made a 
reconnoissance, and discovered where we were from a 
negro who was plowing. He gave me some rations, and 
directions as to how to get to the right road. 

"At night, December 1st, we again set out at an early 



244 SKETCHES OF PEISON LIFE. 

hour ; struck the Augusta and Columbia pike some four 
miles from where we spent the day. After following 
the pike several miles, we called at the plantation of Mr. 

, where the negroes gave us all the information we 

required. They took us to another plantation, where 
we found seven more of our officers, who were at supper 
with the negroes. After supper we all started to cross 
the Saluda Kiver at different ferries. When we came to 
the place where we were to part, we halted and took 
farewell of each other, not liking to travel together, as 
we considered it safer to travel in squads of two or three. 
After parting with our fellow - officers, my companions 
and I went together, but the night being dark, no stars 
to guide us, we lost our way, and, after traveling all 
night, found ourselves six miles below the ferry where 
we intended to cross. Tired, disheartened, and sore-foot- 
ed, we hid ourselves for the day. After sleeping till near 
sundown I made another reconnoissance, and found out 
by a guide-board where we were. 

''December 2d. At night we started, and before we 
reached the road differed as to the direction to take ; so 
my two companions went one way and I another, all 
aiming to cross the river at the same ferry. As I came 
to four corners of road, I was at a loss to know which 
way to go, so resolved to try and see a negro at the first 
house I came to, in order to get the proper information. 
I soon saw a large house, with a number of negro huts 
all around ; but there were two large dogs in the yard 
that disputed my entrance in such a manner that I could 
not enter the yard without alarming the white inhabit- 
ants. At last I saw one hut in the most remote part of 
the yard, and there I concluded to go ; but, in order to 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 245 

baffle the vigilance of the dogs, I went around to the 
back of the hut, so as to go in the back way. Just as I 
was crossing the fence a rail broke, and the occupant of 
the hut, being a negress, who was there spinning, saw mc 
and got frightened. I, seeing her terror, rushed toward 
her in order to quell her alarm, but I only added to her 
fright. She made for the 23lanter's house, screeching all 
the way, until she aroused all the inmates of the place. 
I, of course, took for the woods with all possible speed, 
pursued by dogs and men, but I soon outdistanced them, 
and reached the high road in safety, where I found a 
guide-board which gave me the direction I was looking 
for. In two hours after I reached the long-looked-for 
ferry in safety, and in a short time after was joined by 
my two companions whom I left in the woods in the 
forepart of the night. We remained there until the 
next night. 

"December 3d. Took the road leading to Newberry 
Court-house, where we arrived at daylight the next 
morning. Not liking to go through the town, we flanked 
it to the left, crossed Bush Eiver, and hid ourselves in the 
woods for the day. Here, I regret to say, we parted with 
Captain Ottinger, he not being able to go any farther on 
account of pain in his limbs. 

"Next night, December 4th, Captain Pennypacker and 
myself set out for Lawrenceville Court-house, thirty-six 
miles from Newberry. After traveling till near daylight, 
as we were very hungry, we kept looking out to see if any 
negroes were about, so as to get some breakfast, as they 
are the only ones from whom we can obtain food, or to 
whom we dare apply. Near daylight we came to a plan- 
tation where there were some twenty negro huts, and in 



246 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

one of them we saw a light. I resolved to try and get 
breakfast. I went carefully to the door of the hut, and 
was about to knock, when I heard a woman say * break- 
fast's ready.' I started at the sound of the voice, know- 
ing it was no negro voice, went carefully round to the 
window, and looked in, and saw it was a white man's 
house — overseer's — a very unusual thing for a white man 
to live in a negro hut. I left as soon as possible, and 
hurried on two miles farther, when I saw another light, 
and also saw a negro man carrying a torch ; so I went 
up and made myself known, stating that I wanted some 
breakfast. He said that he could not get me any thing to 
eat then, but he would be plowing that day in a certain 
field, and would give me something there ; so on we went, 
and concealed ourselves in the woods close by where the 
negro was to be plowing, and went to sleep. Late in the 
afternoon we awoke, and Captain Pennypacker started 
for the field where the negro was plowing to get some 
rations. In a few minutes I saw him returning on the 
double-quick. He stated that he ran against the over- 
seer, and that he supposed he was after help to capture 
us; so we started on the run, running some four miles, 
outdistancing our pursuers, when we rested until night. 

" December 5th. "We again took the road to Law- 
renceville Court-house. ^After marching some six miles 
we met two negroes, who brought us thirty dollars' 
worth of rations, which we did justice to in the way of 
eating. After supper we continued our journey, and 
passed safely through Lawrenceville Court-house at about 
3 o'clock A.M., without even the bark of a dog, and se- 
creted ourselves for the day in a wood four miles west 
of the town, on the Greenville Eoad. 



^ SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 247 

" December 6th. At an early hour we took the Green- 
ville pike, and, after traveling some distance, lost the 
direct road, were tracked and pursued by dogs and men, 
run down a hill, and crossed a deep creek by a mill, and 
had to give up our journey for that day on account of 
rain. 

"Next day, December 7th, we were encircled by roads, 
and, not knowing which way to take, I resolved to try 
and find a negro and get some information. At about 
2 o'clock P.M. I heard some one chopping. Suppos- 
ing it to be a negro man, I went to see, and, after go- 
ing some ways in the direction of the sound, discovered 
it to be a white man. My horror was great lest he 
might see me, and, retreating carefully, I trampled on a 
rotten limb, which attracted the attention of two hounds 
of his that were not far from me. They made a tremen- 
dous noise, and took after me. I ran at the top of my 
speed, pursued by the man and his dogs. Finding it im- 
possible to get ofP, I jumped into an old water -course, 
and kept the dogs at bay with my club until their owner 
came up. He called ofC the dogs, and questioned me as 
to who I was and where I was going. I told him that 
I belonged at Columbia, which was true, and that I was 
going home ; that, seeing persimmon-trees in the wood, I 
was after some, when his dogs saw and made for me. 
This explanation seemed to satisfy him, and I started off; 
but he bid me hold on, and come and have supper with 
him. Fearing some treachery might be intended, I de- 
clined, saying I was in too much of a hurry, and went 
on. As I went off he looked after me, and I could see 
that he was examining my boots and uniform. Of 
course he knew he could not capture me without help. 



248 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. ^ 

Every man in the Confederacy is a soldier authorized to 
arrest, any suspicious persons. As soon as I could I 
found my companion. We changed our direction, and 
went off on the run through the woods, guided by the 
sun. After going about two miles, we could hear the 
hounds on our track, as though we were hares or foxes ; 
however, we went on some two miles farther, when the 
hounds and horsemen came in sight at about a mile dis- 
tant. We thought we were gone certain, but thoughts 
of home and friends kept up our drooping spirits, and 
we run on the best we could. As we descended into 
a valley the cry of the hounds warned us of their near 
approach, and we could hear the voices of the horsemen 
distinctly encouraging them on. At this moment we 
saw two young ladies passing in a foot-path that came 
through the woods. After they passed we took their 
track in the opposite direction, thereby confounding the 
scent of the hounds, and once more we escaped. 

"After getting rid of our pursuers we halted until 
dark, got over our fright, and then took the road again. 
We had a severe march through mud and rain, and in 
the morning found ourselves fourteen miles from Green- 
ville, when we concealed ourselves in a swamp near by, 
to remain for the day. 

"December 8th. At night we started for Greenville. 
We traveled about eight miles, and, getting very hungry, 
I went into a negro hut. I told them who I was ; that I 
was making my escape from prison, and that I wanted 
some supper. They said I could have any thing they 
had in the house, and that they were so happy to have 
it in their power to help me some ; so the females went 
to cooking, while all the men gathered around me to 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 249 

learn what Mr. Lincoln intended to do with them. I 
told them that he intended to set them all free. At 
hearing that, they fell down on their knees and offered 
a fervent prayer to the Great Giver of all for their speedy 
deliverance. They wanted to know if Mr. Lincoln would 
be re-elected. I told them that he was elected for four 
years more, and then they cheered. At this time sup- 
per was announced, and a splendid supper it was. We 
ate heartily, and got some provisions to carry away. 
One of the men gave us valuable information ; told us 
of the militia, and where they were posted ; also told us 
how to flank Greenville safely; so, after bidding our 
benefactors an affectionate farewell, we departed, I leav- 
ing some United States money as a recompense for their 
kindness. After we came to the cross-roads where we 
were to flank Greenville it commenced snowing. We 
then rested until sundown, when we again set out, and 
made a good night's march of twenty-two miles, being 
then fourteen miles from Greenville. We passed the 
next day hidden in the woods, and at night set out for 
Greenville. About two miles out we were crossing a 
creek, when we were overtaken by a mounted cavalry- 
man. He bid us good-night, and passed on ; but as soon 
as he left we took a different road, fearing that we might 
be pursued. At midnight we went to a negro hut, and 
the inmates got us a good meal, and gave us some eata- 
bles to carry with us. They told us where the Eebels had 
their pickets posted, and told us how to flank the village ; 
so we left our dark friends and started, observing the in- 
structions they gave us, and flanked the town on our 
left. It commenced storming and blowing so furiously 
that we were compelled to give up oi:^..-:^^eh- aii4-fieeki!*aR!<^!^^ 

^2 I GETTYSBURG COLLEGE ^ 

I Gettysbarg. Pa. 1 

I - LIBRARY - ' \ 



250 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

shelter in an old barn that was half filled with straw. 
Here we found three of our officers, viz., Major Young, 
76th New York, Captain Mooney, 16th New York Cav- 
alry, and Captain Hays, 95th New York. We all stop- 
ped here until the night of the 11th, when we continued 
our journey for Pickens Court-house. We traveled 
twenty miles that night on a rough road, with hum- 
mocks frozen hard, until the blood ran out of my feet. 
But the thought of home was every thing to us, and we 
kept on until morning, then slept on the snow all day 
without fire. 

" December 12th. We came within two miles of Pick- 
ens Court-house, a distance of fourteen miles. I came 
near givig up on account of blisters on my feet and 
heels. 

"December 13th. We resumed our march until we 
came to Pickens Court-house. We were informed previ- 
ously that there was a railroad running from there to 
Walhallia, a distance of twelve miles ; but there was no 
such road there. We went all around the village, hoping 
to find the railroad, until all the dogs in the place were 
after us. At last we took the pike, and started for Wall- 
hollow ; but, after a few hours' march, lost our way, ow- 
ing ta the darkness of the night, and, after traveling all 
night, found ourselves in the morning but about six miles 
from Pickens Court-house. 

"December 14th. After traveling all night we reached 
Wallhollow, found a Union house, told them who we 
were, got a good supper, and there rested all night and 
next day, in order to get some rations cooked. 

" On the night of the 15th we started for Clayton, 
Georgia, guided around the village by a negro. We 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 251 

flanked the town to the right, and struck the pike road 
about one mile from town. We crossed Stump-house 
Mountain and tunnel that night, flanking wagon -camps 
every few miles. 

"December 16th. The weather was very cold and 
freezing. After traveling about four miles, we came to 
the Tugalo Kiver. This river is about eight rods wide, 
and has no bridge across it. Here we had to strip off, 
tie our clothes on our shoulders, and ford it in the cold 
night. Several times I thought the current would sweep 
me off, but we resolved to brave all danger for the sake 
of liberty, and we reached the other side in safety, dried 
ourselves the best we could, put on our clothes, and went 
on. To our sorrow, we had to cross four streams in the 
same way that night. At daylight we were within three 
miles of Clayton, but, being tired and foot-sore, rested 
for the day. 

"December 17th. At night we started in the rain and 
mud, traveled through small creeks and mud-holes all 
night, passing through Clayton at midnight; took the 
Hiwassa Eoad, and, after several miles' travel, daylight 
stayed our march until night. 

" At dark on the 18th we commenced to cross the ter- 
minus of the Blue Kidge Mountains. We tried to get 
some food, but could not ; so we marched on through rain 
and mud, every mile or two had to cross a creek or brook 
without a bridge, and at daylight we stopped for the 
day on the top of the Blue Kidge Mountains without 
food. 

" December 19th. We took the road again, and traveled 
all night ; got into the Hiwassa valley, within five miles 
of Hiwassa village, but failed to get food. Hunger now 



252 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

became so intense that we could hardly stand it longer, 
and we resolved this night to obtain food, no matter how 
great the risk might be. 

"December 20th. At night we went to a farm-house in 
order to obtain some rations and supper. Three of us 
went in to buy for the rest, while the others watched on 
the outside, lest they should send for help to capture us. 
The farmer met us at the door, and asked us who we were. 
We told him that we were soldiers, were going to Hi- 
wassa, had exhausted our rations coming over the mount- 
ains, and that we called on him in order to buy some 
supper. He said we could have supper, and walked into 
the kitchen to give directions to tte cook; but, at the 
same time, he sent after help to capture us. He then 
came back, and joined us in conversation. Just as we 
were at supper, two doors leading into the dining-room 
opened, and four men entered each door, with revolvers 
cocked, demanding us to surrender. Oh, treachery! 
treachery ! we cried out, but all to no effect. Here we 
were, after all our hardships and trouble, betrayed once 
more into the hands of the Philistines. They also cap- 
tured those we left outside as pickets. Oh, what a night 
of anxious disappointment this was to us! All our 
hopes seemed to be blasted. All we had endured and 
sufferecl for the past twenty -four days, in hopes of gain- 
ing our liberty, and of seeing our friends and homes 
once more, amounted to nothing. All the consolation 
we could get from our captors was, that we must go 
back to prison. You may imagine our feelings; after 
spending eighteen months in prison, then effected our es- 
cape, and had traveled two hundred and fifty-seven miles 
through woods and over mountains, fording all streams 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 258 

that came in our way in the dead of night, and, after suf- 
fering so much from hunger and cold, living in the 
woods for so long a time, to be then captured after all, 
was hard. But prisoners we were, and back to prison at 
Columbia we must go. Our captor's name was John 
Cornby, a captain of 'Home-guard.' He was proprietor 
of the house where we were so unfortunate as to go for 
our supper. He kept us all night, and treated us well. 
Next morning he turned us over to Lieutenant J. Gib- 
son, of Captain Singleton's company, of Clayton, Georgia. 
The lieutenant had been to Hiwassa village with dis- 
patches, and was returning, when we were captured ; so 
Captain Cornby delivered us up to him and his party of 
three men. Those men were deserters from the Eebel 
army, and formed part of a home company under Cap- 
tain Singleton. They marched us back over the mount- 
ains, and on the second night we reached Captain Single- 
ton's, a small log house in the mountains five miles 
southwest of Clayton. The captain treated us very well, 
kept us all night in his house, and next day sent us off 
to Wallhollow, under guard of Lieutenant Gibson, Mar- 
cus Tippins, and James Eeamey. After we had travel- 
ed some miles, Tippins said if we would give them one 
thousand dollars we might go where we pleased. He 
said that they would forge a receipt for our delivery, 
and sign the name of Captain Moody, to whom we were 
to be delivered. Of course we could not raise the money. 
We consulted together, and told them what we could 
raise, including our jewelry ; but this not being enough 
to satisfy their demands, they marched us on, and that 
night we staid with one Mr. Gwinn, and were guarded 
by citizens. Our old guard went to sleep, and one of 



254 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

our officers made his escape ; so, next morning, after tbey 
discovered one gone, they became enraged, and tied us 
all together with a rope, so tight that the blood made 
it^appearance on our wrists — threatening to shoot us 
down at the first false step we made after we left the 
place where we staid for the night. They took us off 
the main road, through the woods, and to the top of 
'Stump -house Mountain,' where they made us form a 
circle. They then cocked their revolvers, and asked us 
if we were prepared to die, saying that they would not 
treat us so brutally as we did their men after getting 
them prisoners — stating that we Yankees killed their 
men, stripped them of all they had, and then left them 
unburied ; but that they would treat us more humanely 
by killing us, and then burying us, at the same time 
calling our attention to some deep pits close by. These 
pits were dug in the form of a well, and were some two 
hundred and fifty feet deep. They were used for rais- 
ing copper, as there was a copper mine underneath. 
Here, they said, shall be your graves. We begged hard 
for them not to kill us, asserting our innocence as to ever 
killing a prisoner ; but they would not allow us to say 
a word in our defense. At the same time, they ordered 
us to deposit all our effects on the ground, and, after we 
had done so, they told us to strip off all our clothes. Of 
course there was no other way but to submit. They 
then took all our clothes, money, and what little jewelry 
we had, and gave us old dirty rags to put on — some they 
had for that purpose. They then told us to pray for 
ourselves, if we wished to do it. We did pray, and fer- 
vently too, and I have reason to believe that God heard 
our prayers, for just then a man who was hunting came 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 255 

along and saw us. The man's name was Moorehead, 
and lived in Wallhollow, South Carolina. He asked 
them what all this meant. They replied that we were 
Yankees that had escarped from prison, and that they in- 
tended to kill us in retaliation f(ft what Sherman had 
done to their citizens as he passed through Georgia. The 
man said they should not do it ; that we had surrendered, 
and should be tregited as prisoners. He also said that 
the government was the proper authority to decide who 
should be killed and who should not, and that he would 
report them if they did not desist. Then we began to 
tell him of our past treatment, but were suddenly stopped 
by a knock on the head with one of their carbines, and 
threats to shoot us on the spot if we told any more. Fi- 
nally, after some debate with Mr. Moorehead, they ordered 
us to get ready and march on to "Wallhollow, where we 
arrived at about 3 o'clock P.M., much to our satisfaction. 
We were turned over to Captain Moody, who was quite 
a gentleman, and treated us as^such. We stopped there 
all night, and next morning wer^ visited by the citizens, 
who gave us invitations to dine with them. I went off 
with an Irish gentleman, and spent the afternoon with 
him. I had a splendid breakfast and dinner, and got 
enough food to last me to headquarters. In the after- 
noon of that day we took the railcars for Columbia. We 
were escorted to the depot by the citizens, who treated 
us courteously, saying they wished they were once more 
in the Union, and several such remarks. At last the cars 
started, and we bid farewell to our new friends. The 
train stopped all night at Anderson Court-house, and we 
were put in the jail, where we remained from Saturday 
until Monday. Sunday was Christmas, and was the most 



256 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

lonesome day I ever spent in my life. Just think of it ; 
to be locked up in a cold cell two nights and one day, 
without fire, bed, blanket, or seat ; weather cold and freez- 
ing. But the good Lord gave us strength to stand all 
those persecutions. €)n Monday morning we were taken" 
to the cars and started for Columbia, where we arrived 
at sundown ; stopped that night in Columbia jail, and 
next morning were put in the Asyluiji Prison yard with 
the rest of the officers. I was without clothes, money, or 
blanket, going on my nineteenth month's imprisonment. 
In conclusion, I will say that it is the general impression 
of the people that the Confederacy is ruined.* There is 
only about one white man to a house. The poor men 
say that if they could get away from the South they 
would do so, as they are oppressed in every imaginable 
way by the Confederate government authorities. They 
wish themselves back in the old Union. The jails arc 
full of these people, who refcse to join the army " 

* Written February, 18G5. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 257 



CHAPTER XV. 

IN THE CELL AT LIBBY. 

The following article was contributed by Colonel 
Litchfield, one of the famous raiders under Kilpatrick in 
February and March, 1864. He gives the following in- 
side view of cell life at Libby. Read it, and then say 
what shall be done with those who had authority over 
them. 

" We were captured near Richmond, on the Kilpatrick 
and Dahlgren raid, about March 1st. Litchfield, Clark, 
and Kingston were kept m the entrance of Libby for 
three days under special guard, not allowed to communi- 
cate with other ofiicers. While there, were visited fre- 
quently by citizens; among these was the wife of the Reb- 
el Secretary of War, Mrs. Seddon, who wished to iden- 
tify some of the party as of those who paid their compli- 
ments to her at Goochland. Her rage exceeded all pre- 
vious exhibitions — said we were a party of hell-monsters 
and vagabonds ; hoped we would all be hung ; hoped 
her government was strong enough to do it ; at any rate, 
would use her influence to have us put in dungeons, and 
fed on bread and water till we rotted. In pursuance of 
those suggestions to her noble lord no doubt came the 
treatment which followed. On the fourth day we were 
thrust into a dungeon eight by twelve feet, and in the 
course of the day four negro soldiers, captured from But- 
ler, were unceremoniously put in with us, doubtless to 



258 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

throw light upon our condition. In the evening they 
were taken out and put through the manual of arms, to 
satisfy the curiosity of the prison officers as to whether 
the negro was fit for a soldier ; then were informed they 
.would be hung at nine o'clock the next morning, and 
were made to kneel, one after another, on the pavement 
of the cellar to pray, then brought back to inform us of 
their doom. That was a solemn night for the poor fel- 
lows. One of them sat up all night, spending the time in 
prayer. Morning came, but no execution. We remained 
in this crowded condition one week, six officers and^bur 
negroes in a dungeon eight by twelve feet, when we were 
removed to a more commodious cell, and four officers of 
negro troops put in with us. These were Captain Thomas 
Thornton, 5th United States Volunteer Cavalry ; Lieuten- 
ant L. R. Titus, 8d Corps d'Afrique; Lieutenant Brown, 
and Lieutenant G. B. Coleman, 5th United States Colored 
Volunteers. In this condition we remained four and a 
half months ; were furnished with no fire, though during 
the time snow fell to the depth of eight inches , no uten- 
sils to eat with; and were at no time allowed to send 
out for any thing, nor allowed to receive any thing from 
friends. As a substitute for a privy, an open tub was set 
in one corner of the room, the stench from which was al- 
most insufferable. At times our room received all the 
smoke from a pipe protruding from an adjoining window, 
proving one of our greatest annoyances. The burning 
of the pitch-pine made the smoke so dense as to com- 
pletely blind us. When rations were served, officers and 
negroes were arranged alternately in a row, and the stuff 
was eaten under guard. While the room overhead was 
occupied by officers, communication was always kept up. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIF]^. 259 

and sufficient favors were received to make our condition 
bearable. After they left, not only were these comforts 
taken away, but the rations were reduced to the lowest 
possible limit on which life could be sustained, consisting 
of a piece of corn bread made from unbolted meal, one 
and a half to two and four inches ; one gill of filthy black 
pease, boiled in water ; two ounces of rancid bacon. On 
this filthy and insufficient diet most of the party were 

taken sick , and, till Surgeon , whose name I have 

forgotten, and is a shame to humanity, left, we were de- 
nied hospital privileges. During these four and a half 
months we were kept as a sort of menagerie for exhibi- 
tion to the curious negro-breeders and negro-haters, all 
delighted that the Yankees had found so fit companions. 
Among our distinguished visitors was 'Belle Boyd,' a 
lady of somewhat questionable notoriety. All this time, 
though treated as felons, no charges were preferred against 
any of the party ; but not till after repeated inquiries and 
remonstrances were we released. On the 16th day of 
July we started for Macon, Georgia, where we joined the 
other prisoners. 

''The following are the names of the officers confined 
in the cell : A. C. Litchfield, Lieutenant Colonel 7th Mich- 
igan Cavalry ; John A. Clark, Captain 7th Michigan Cav- 
alry ; Major E. F. Cook, 2d New York Cavalry ; 

Kingston, Surgeon 2d New York Cavalry ; H. H. D. 
Merritt, Lieutenant 5th New York Cavalry ; E. Bartley, 
Lieutenant United States Signal Corps; T. Thornton, 
Captain 5th United States Volunteer Cavalry ; L. K. Ti- 
tus, Lieutenant 3d United States Colored Troops ; Lieu- 
tenant Brown, 5th United States Colored Troops ; Lieu- 
tenant Coleman, 5th United States Colored Troops." 



260 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



CHAPTER XYI. 

ESCAPED AND RECAPTURED. 

Camp Sorghum, S. C, November 24th. 

Thanksgiving all day. Not much to give thanks 
for, but thankful it is no worse. In the evening read 
the 146th Psalm. Thought the seventh verse meant me. 

Told A I thought I could not afford to stay much 

longer in prison. 

Friday^ 25ih. In camp as usual. Felt unusually dis- 
contented; meditated escape. At night baked two loaves 
of corn bread, the usual number for next day's ration for 
five. Told P it was my last baking. 

Saturday, 26ih. In the forenoon talked with A 

about building. Had no faith in it, but felt it a duty to 
try to be comfortable. Told him to " go ahead ;" I would 
help If I staid in camp. Got the loan of an ax. About 
noon prisoners began to leave. Thought my time tad 
come. Put on another piece of a shirt, caught up blanket, 

said good-by, and started for guard line. Found K 

there, in my state of mind. Tried several points. No 
success. Watched movements. Saw our game. Picked 
up a stick of timber, one at each end. Staggered across 
guard line. Guard objected. "Mistake." Couldn't see 
it. Walked on round good ways. Threw down stick on 
"our pile." (?) Went back after " another." (?) Couldn't 
find it. Walked on. Dodged wood -cutters. Hid in 
the brush. Lay still all day. Sun went down slowly. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 261 

Thought of a great many things. Wondered if it was 
possible for us to make our escape. Prayed God, if it 
were His will, He would direct us in every step ; if not, 
that He would defeat us. Felt safe. Sun went down ; 
stars peeped out and down through the tree-tops, and 
seemed to bid us " go." 

Great noise in camp. Eose up quietly. All safe. 
Thanked God. Took stellar direction. "That's one 
star." It has guided many a fugitive before us. Let's 
" away !" "Away !" Crossed a road. " Away, tiptoe !" 
"Away still!" "Westward!" " Tiptoe, away !" Yenus 
our guide. "Arcturus behind!" "Away!" "Good- 
by," Camp Sorghum! "May we never see you again!" 

"Away through bush and bog, 
Over fence and log, 
Over brush and bramble. 
Fast as we could scramble ; 
Heath and thickest bushes ; 
Now among the rushes ; 
Over stream we hurried, 
Not the least bit flurried," 

though stopping every few rods to see if all was right. 
Spoke only in low whispers. Came to a road. Decided 
to remain quiet for an hour. Heard others pass. Fol- 
lowed soon. Passed plantation on the left. On! Wo 
interruption. Heard negroes singing in the distance. 
Came in hearing of a house near the road. Women sing- 
ing. Dog heard us, and barked furiously. Halted. De- 
cided to "fall back in good order." Dog could not see 
us, but evidently scented us. Made a few steps by way 
of retreat ; dog heard us, and, being scared, broke for the 

house. K , like a quarter-horse, struck for the brush. 

Halted him in less than- a quarter of a mile. Flanked the 



262 SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 

house on left, stumbled over many a bush, and, after an 
hour's Seating about, we struck the road. Followed it 
part of the time. Flanked another. Plantations. Kept 
the blind roads as well as we could. Steered west by 
stars. Heard loud halloaing among negroes ; sometimes 
the hounds. Saturday night, and they were hunting. 
Came again to main road. Ean on a house. Backed, 
and flanked it. Got into deep hollow ; by-paths. • Came 
near big road ; saw lights. Thought it must be Rebel 
camp. Great noise, and singing and dancing ; sounded as 
though some were preaching, some praying, some shout- 
ing, some laughing and halloaing. Think it must have 
been a negro frolic. Passed large plantation fields thrown 
open and destroyed; grown up with weeds and bushes. 
No roads ; kept direction by stars. Became tired ; laid 
down and slept for one hour. Went on ; began to feel 
hungry. Heard roosters crowing in the distance, and 
the sounds thereof provoked hunger. Strongly tempted ; . 
thought I would like to have chicken in hand. Medi- 
tated the destruction of something to appease appetite. 
Rooster crowed again. Made straight course by sound ; 
halted in front of house. Rooster wouldn't crow any 
more. Heard one at the barn; liked his voice better. 
Approached ; went in ; desperate work ; never stole a 
chicken in my life, but very hungry ; must have some- 
thing ; very hungry. Put hand on hen ; hen died. Put 
hand on another; hen flew away^ and made such a noise 
that we were obliged to leave on short notice. Traveled 
three or four miles through the woods and brush ; went 
into quarters at daylight near Lexington, South Carolina. 
Cooked chicken by holding it over a fire built in a hole 
dug in the sand ; devoured it ; delicious ! Laid down ; 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 263 

did not sleep much ; laid all day. Heard bells ring at 
church-time in village. Nothing to eat or drink for the 
balance of the day. Sun went down beautiful and red. 
Prayed God to direct us. 

Sunday^ second nighty 21th. Starlight. Crept forth care- 
fully from our concealment. Cut clubs with dull case- 
knives ; all the weapons, offensive or defensive, we had. 
Started cautiously to flank Lexington on the left. Heard 
waterfall in the distance. Were quite thirsty, hungry, 
and no provisions. Traveled through the woods. Saw 
light in the distance. Speculated upon the probabilities 
of its being a negro hut; decided in the negative; 
thought there must be some close by. Thought we saw a 
barn in the distance. Went to it, and found it an old to- 
bacco-house ; noting there. Waited around a long time 
for negroes ; none came. Heard hand-mill. (?) Made us 
feel more hungry. Thought of the good things that might 
be near by. Approached house. Dogs became ferocious, 
and for fear of detection we left. Traveled a good ways. 
Ean into more dogs, in trying to run into something to 
eat. Became disgusted, and, withal, very faint. Ate a tea- 
spoonful of salt ; felt better, and went on. Good road, 
but it soon began to lead in wrong direction. Too much 
north. Tried to twist it round ; couldn't do it. Heard 
more water far off to the right. Some ahead sounded 
like a river. Feared pickets. Thought we saw several. 
Came up to an old tan-yard. Took a drink, the first for 
thirty hours. Took road to the left. Ean into open 
field. Lost it. Crossed boys on fence. No road. Con- 
cluded to steer by stars, and leave the roads to the dogs. 
Ran into swamp; huge one. Tried to flank it. Got 
flanked, and backed out. Went back to tan -yard. De- 



264 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

cided to risk crossing a bridge ahead. Found a mill. 
No pickets, as we expected. Pushed on. Eoad twisted 
round more than ever the wrong way. Got disgusted 
again. Left the road and steered by the stars. Deep 
pine forest. Yery tired and weak. Sank down to sleep 
'neath a large pine-tree. "Waked up in an hour refresh- 
ed, though very hungry. Started by stars. Kan into a 
huge swamp. Tried to flank it ; no use. Floundered 
about in the brush for a long time. Went back to the 
road. A little discouraged. Concluded to follow road. 
Camp Sorghum began to loom up in imagination, and be- 
came almost visible; but '■'■nof will go to the Arctic 
Ocean before consenting to go back or be taken ! On ! 
on ! Ean on a house. Dogs more than barked. Some 
huts in the rear. Blind with hunger. Could have eaten 
a piece of a dog easily. Passed on, but concluded to try 
to enter by back way and find negro huts. Took a 
large circle in field, and came up in rear. Dogs did not 
see us. Found an old tobacco-house, em^ty ; disa2opoint- 

ed. K suggested a search for potatoes in shed near 

by. Approached it with breathless silence. Good ! found 
some ! Appropriated a peck. Ate a few raw ones, but 
hastened to the woods. Nearly daylight. Went into 
camp. Cooked some potatoes ; ate. Lay down. Yery 
tired. Heard a wagon passing near by. Concluded we 
were discovered. Sought for other quarters. Crossed 
the road. Found pretty good place in half a mile. 
Crawled into bushes and lay down. Slept a little. 
Waked. Thought I would find negroes. Heard them 
in the distance. Crept up to the fence of a plantation. 
Thought I saw a negro plowing in a field far ofi". Slip- 
ped round cautiously in the thick woods. Approached 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 265 

to within fifteen feet of the fence where he would come. 
Waited till he would approach. I rose up to call to 
him; but, what horror! ^'•lohiteP^ I dropped as quick 
as though I had been shot ; lay low until his back was 
turned ; then broke for quarters, disgusted with the en- 
tire white race (South). 

Eoasted balance of potatoes. Hog came up pretty 
close. Thought he wanted to be killed. Made a tre- 
mendous pass at him with a club. Knocked him down, 
and thought I had two hams ; but before I had time to 
possess myself fully of them, lo ! hams got up and went 
off with hog, and I was afraid to follow. Failed this 
time ; but all for the best, as sequel will show. 

Heard a boy coming toward us whistling and driving 
goats. Broke up camp in one fourth of a minute; 
snatched potatoes out of the fire ; covered it up ; picked 
up traps, and glided away as noiselessly as possible. It 
was growing dark ; boy seemed to follow us, whistling. 
We changed direction ; boy changed too. Changed 
again ; boy ditto. Changed again ; boy went on whis- 
tling, all unconscious of us ; but he succeeded in driving 
us into a better road. We lay down close to the road 
for an hour. 

Monday^ third nighty 2StJi. Got up and went on our way. 
Began to feel very hungry and tired. Sand about one 
foot deep. Hard traveling. Halted near a house on the 
right, and waited for negro. Waited long time. None 
came near enough to hail. Dog barked, and we were 
obliged to leave. Trudged on. Traveling very hard. 
Became weary and desperate for water. Brought up 
against a house. Dared not pass it on the road. Heard 
some one spinning. Lay down under a pine a few rods 

M 



266 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

from road. Presently negro came out of house ; crossed 
road near us. We knew him to be a negro by his whis- 
tling and singing. He passed near us, but we dared not 
hail him, for fear of attracting notice from the house. 
Listened carefully, and heard him enter house about a 
quarter of a mile on our right. Thought it must be his 
own. Felt encouraged. Decided to follow him. Ap- 
proached the house. It proved to be plantation-house. 

Dog barked. K wanted to retreat. Could not agree 

with him ; too thirsty and hungry. We waited in the 
bushes near by for nearly an hour. Could hear the con- 
versation at the house ; not very complimentary to the 
"Yanks." I became impatient. We advanced cautious- 
ly. Dog barked. Heard negroes coming out toward 
the barn ; two of them. Now is the time ! Approached 
one of them. " Spoke him." Negro scared. Whisper- 
ed him, " Be quiet." " Yes, sah !" " Who lives here ?" 

"Miss E ." "Any white men here?" "No, sah, 

nary one now, but may be soon.^^ '^'Are you true?" (a 
term we use in the South, and which the negroes under- 
stand perfectly). " Oh yes, sah ; never tell on nobody." 
" Do you know who we are ?" " No, sah." " We are 
Yanks." "Is, sah? I spects you was." "Have you 
ever seen any before?" "Yes, sah; two on em done 
cotched here last night. Dem fust ones I seed." " Where 
are the white men belonging here ?" " Dere's nary white 
man heah jis now. He's done gone out, an' watching 

for you uns all. Massa K lives jes up dah, and he's 

out now, too, wid a gun on the road up dah wha'ah you 
uns wuz, watching for yees." 

And so it turned out that our extreme hunger and 
thirst saved us from capture, and probably from death. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 267 

Had we gone but a few steps farther, as would have been 
the case had we succeeded in taking the " hams" afore- 
said, we should have fallen into the trap set for us. 

These faithful negroes secreted us in a secure place not 
far from the house ; and, after supplying us with water 
and uncooked potatoes, for they said there was nothing 
else about the premises, not even a bit of corn bread, they 
directed us as well as they could how to avoid the pickets. 

Thus far Divine Providence seemed to favor us, resolv- 
ing all our doubts, and making our disappointments and 
seeming failures serve our purpose. 

To show how faithful and how shrewd these poor slaves 
are, I will mention one little incident that occurred while 
in conversation with one of these negroes on the same 
evening. He was one of those coarse, mortally homely 
creatures that looked as though he did not know any 
thing at all. He was giving us some directions how and 
where to secrete ourselves while they brought us some 
food, when all at once he exclaimed, in a half whisper, 
" Kawful dah, kawful! down, down ! man comin' !" We 
could neither see nor hear any one, but we fell flat on the 
ground. We had no sooner done so, than a man, armed 
with a gun, approached, hailed the negro, and commenced 
conversation. It proved to be one of the spies that were 
watching for us. The man did not observe us, but his 
dog did. The negro had a dog also ; and when dog 
number one began to make ado about finding us in that 
curious position, we began to think it was all day with 
us. But mark the shrewdness of this negro. "Begone 
dah ! begone dah !" he exclaimed. " What yer want to 
be fightin' my dog fo' ?" The man, supposing from this 
observation that it was nothing more than a quarrel be- 



268 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

tween the dogs, passed within ten feet of us, no wiser for 
having talked with " Cuflfee." 

But, dear A , I fear that, if I continue this narra- 
tion, your book will not be large enough to contain it. I 
will, therefore, only give you some of the principal inci- 
dents that occurred for the next ten or twelve nights. 
"We were obliged to retrace our steps that night a mile or 
two, when we struck off to our left some eight miles for 
another road less exposed to pickets, and, after sundry 
mistakes and swampings similar to those of the previous 
evening, we went into camp for the day, it having grown 
light before we reached the other road. A little before 
daylight this morning it began to rain, promising, from 
all appearances, to give us a good drenching that day, but, 
fortunately for us, it did not continue long. 

The day was spent as usual, closely secreting ourselves 
among some old logs and bushes, and cooking the balance 
of our potatoes. I had my Bible with me, my only stock 
of property except some MS. I had secreted on my per- 
son, and, as I could sleep but little during the day, I 
busied myself in reading that, and I do assure you it was 
a solid comfort. I have thought since that I was about 
as happy as ever I was in my life. I remember that my 
socks had given out on the previous evening, and no 
wonder, for they were made up of all manner of patches 
and pieces — and my shoes were no better — and that I 
took a part of my shirt (it is needless to say what partic- 
ular part) and repaired said socks, revamping them en- 
tirely, or, what is called in the language of shoemakers, 
" foxed" them round about. Thus passed the day, and 
night came on, beautiful and clear. The first thing of note 
was a threatened encounter with a hw^Q bear that was 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 269 

prowling about our pathway. But, owing to a disposi- 
tion on the part of one of the parties — not the bear — to 
be a little prudent, there was no fight, but a bully run, in 
which, I believe, the bear did not participate. 

We soon struck a road that seemed to lead in the right 
direction, which we followed. We soon became intense- 
ly thirsty, and in our state of bodily vigor it was almost 
maddening. I will quote from my diary here again. 
Became very thirsty ; came to a plantation-house ; heard 
some one spinning (and here I would remark it is not an 
unusual thing in the South to hear the spinning-wheel 
till near midnight, a species of industry recently sprung 
up ; but I more than half suspect it is carried on chiefly 
by the slaves). Almost mad for water ; concluded to flank 
the house on the left ; thought I smelled water* on that 
side. Crossed two fields ; water became more apparent ; 
prayed God that we might find it. Looked on the left 
hand, and saw the stars shining on the ground. " Wa- 
ter!" we cried, in a whisper, for we dared not speak. 
"Thank Grod!" and we rushed to the side of a beautiful 
little lake or pond, where we laid down and drank, and 
drank. 

Oh, how good is water ! God gave it to us when we 
most needed it. After drinking we sat down upon the 

bank. K said he thought the stars shone brighter 

than usual. No wonder* His eyes were brighter, too. 
We were glad. Ate some sweet potato ; drank more wa- 
ter ; looked at the stars a while. They seemed to smile 
on us, and bid us away from the vile dens of oppression. 
Thought of dear ones at home that I had not heard from 

* This is no fiction. A man suffering from extreme thirst can scent 
water half a mile, if it be abundant. 



270 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

for nearly a year. Tears came into my eyes, and we 
started for the road. 

We suffered no more for water that night, for in a few 
miles we were hemmed in by it, and were obliged to slip 
off our shoes and stockings, an elaborate ceremony in our 
cases, and to wade a stream of water deep, and swift, and 
cold. 

This done, we plodded on, passing several large plant- 
ations, and, being still hungry, we sought for food every 
where ; but we feared to enter a house, lest we should 
encounter a white man. Why should we fear our own 
race and nation? We would rather have met the bear 
we left behind than a white man here in South Carolina. 
I quote again from diary. Came to high road ; guide- 
board on high post. Wanted to know where we were, 

and where we were going ; too high to be read. K 

proposed to climb it and read. Good ! I "boosted" him 

thus (see cut opposite). When up, K lighted a match 

and read as follows : "Mount Welling, — miles ; Charles- 
ton, — miles ; Columbia, — miles ; Hamburg, via Eidge- 
house Road, 42 miles." That experiment paid, for we 
had hitherto been ignorant of our whereabouts, and of 
our place of destiny. Christened it "The Pursuit of 
Knowledge under DiflS.culties." Proposed a cut for 
A 's " Illustrated Prison Life." 

After traveling fifteen or twenty miles this night, we 
sought shelter by the side of an old log in the densest 
part of the woods, where we spent the day as on former 
occasions. 

Here a little incident worthy of note occurred. Late 
in the afternoon we became very hungry, and I determ- 
ined to creep forth in search of food. I had selected my 



SKETCHES OF PKTSON LIFE. 



271 




The Pursuit of Knowledge under Difficulties. 

direction, and was about starting, when I heard the report 
of a gun but a short distance from us, and in the exact 
direction I had selected. I concluded not to go. In a 
similar manner, on another occasion, I was saved by the 
barking of a dog. 

After the stars had made their appearance, and while 
the new moon hung like a silver horn in the west, we 
crept quietly forth on this, the fifth night of our travel, 
and resumed our wearisome march. 

It is remarkable how much a person will fall in love 
with Nature and familiar objects when thus shut out of 



272 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

all human society. We would have considered it a great 
calamity indeed had we been deprived the privilege of 
looking at the stars ; and when the new moon made its 
appearance we hailed it with rapturous joy. It seemed 
that an old friend had come to us to pilot us through our 
difi&cult undertaking. Even the clouds seemed friendly, 
and the wind whispered sweet names of '' home and 
friends" to us. 

After traveling some five or six miles, and making sev- 
eral fruitless attempts to replenish our depleted commis- 
sary and our collapsed stomachs, we came in sight of a 
large plantation and buildings near the road. After 
making careful observations, we came to the conclusion 
there must be negro quarters somewhere near. This was 
confirmed by singing, which we heard beyond and in the 
rear. We therefore determined to flank the large build- 
ings, and bring up at the negro quarters, if we could find 
them. In this we were guided by the singing, which we 
could now distinctly hear, and which we knew by the 
tone to proceed from a negro hut. The booming of the 
cannon that guides the lost mariner to the ship or the 
shore could not be a much more welcome sound than this 
sweet voice was to us. But I will here quote briefly from 
diary. Nearly starved. Saw a light in negro hut, in 
large row of them near the road. All looked favorable. 
Woman kept on singing. Determined to enter. Saw 
light in two of the huts. Approached hut No. 2, and 
peeped through the cracks near the chimney ; saw two 
negroes ; had been making baskets, and were about go- 
ing to bed. Between ten and eleven o'clock. Went in ; 
negroes somewhat scared, and I do not much wonder, for 
we must have looked somewhat frightful. ' ' Who is yeh ?" 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 273 

'•We are Yankee officers ; will you be true ?" "Oh yes, 
sah ! We nose who you is now. We never tells." We 
begged for something to eat. They said they had noth- 
ing, but that they would take us to the next house — hut 
No. 1 — where we could get something. These two men 
were railroad hands, and were in the employ of the gov- 
ernment. Told us that four Yanks had been there that 
night and got something to eat. Took us to next house. 
Woman still singing ; went in ; man asleep ; waked him ; 
told him who we were. They understood us perfectly ; 
woman went about getting supper ; we were glad. I laid 
down ; could not sleep ; too hungry and tired. Man told 
us all about the country and roads. The news of Sher- 
man's approach was terrifying every body. The road 
we were on was picketed farther on ; told us we had bet- 
ter go through Aiken, twenty-four miles south. Timely 
advice again. Supper ready — corn bread, sweet potatoes, 
and fried bacon. Oh, how delicious that latter article ! 
the first we had had for nearly four months. Ate enor- 
mously ; filled our haversacks with bread and sweet po- 
tatoes ; got some salt. Started ; man went with us some 
distance, to show us the road. A widow woman lived 

on plantation. Overseer had gone to C on business. 

Negro said he knew what it was to run away ; had tried 
it several times himself. Good and true people. May 
God bless them for their kindness to us and others! 
After giving us careful directions, and bidding us God 
speed, this good man left us, and we went on our way re- 
joicing and praising God for negroes. 

We were now in a rich and thickly-settled country — 
that is to say, thickly settled for the South, there being 
a plantation every few miles ; but, fortunately for us, the 

M 2 



274 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

buildings, for the most part, were at a distance from the 
road. Made good time. Were much cheered by our 
good fortune, and the prospect of seeing home and friends. 
Oh, how our hearts yearned for these! I verily think 
that, if our desires could have been gratified, we should 
have been entirely overcome. 

Here we found milestones set along the road, and, by 
carefully feeling them, we could ascertain the distances. 
On this night we repeated the process of " climbing the 
guide-post." 

In a few hours after eating so hearty a meal I became 
very sick ; was obliged to lie down several times. Suf- 
fered till morning, but could not afford to give up. Be- 
came very thirsty. Went on till near morning. Feared 
that we would be obliged to go into quarters without 
water. I prayed for water, and in less than fifteen min- 
utes I saw the stars reflected in the road from a stream 
of water. Thank God for water! Traveled about fif- 
teen miles this night, and went into quarters near a beau- 
tiful little stream of water, which, in our state of health 
and dirtiness, was much needed. Here, from our com- 
plete seclusion, we were permitted to engage in ablutions 
both in person and clothing. So calm, and sweet, and 
still was this day, that it seemed that it must be a Sab- 
bath. Slept but little ; read much in Bible, and com- 
menced a diary of our travels. 

God had so signally directed us and delivered us hith- 
erto, that we began to feel encouraged, and to believe 
that he intended to bring us through safe. 

Our next night's travel, December 1st, was full of in- 
cident and danger, and not less remarkable deliverances. 
Twice we were met by parties traveling or hunting with 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 275 

dogs ; but, by dodging and lying flat on the ground, they 
passed us without detecting us. Our road was beset by 
fires, which in some cases we found it difficult to avoid. 
About three or four o'clock in the morning we were sur- 
prised to find ourselves right in the midst of a large 
town; hotels, stores, large mansions loomed up in the 
darkness all around us. It was too late to retreat, and 
we rushed on, and, in our attempt to avoid the main 
street, we ran into the railroad depot. Here it was still 
more dangerous ; but by gliding stealthily from point to 
point where we could see, keeping our direction as well 
as we could by the stars, our best friends here in this, 
where a false step, or the breaking of a stick, the rattle 
of the gravel, or even a loud breath might have betrayed 
us to our enemies. But, strange to say, not even a dog 
barked ; and the only signs of civilized life was the 
crowing of the chickens ; and this would not have been a 
safe business for them if it had been any where else but 
in town. Perhaps they or their owners were aware of 
this, for Yanks were numerous all through the country. 
Soon, however, we came to roads leading out of town, 
and right glad were we to find them, for we were not 
long in finding our friendly forest. After many and de- 
vious wanderings we found our road. I knew it from 
its direction, and because I felt safe in it. But by this 
time we were suffering for water again, not having had 
any during the night; but, just as I began to pray earn- 
estly for it, I heard a little brook bubbling not more than 
ten feet from the road. " Thank God for the little bub- 
bler" (I find it in my diary). There is nothing among 
the common gifts of Providence for which a man, when 
tired and thirsty, feels more thankful than for water. 



276 SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 

The common blessings are those for which we should 
feel most grateful. What a bountiful supply of good air 
we have in the world, and what misery we would suffer, 
even if it were changed in the slightest degree in its com- 
position ! And yet how few ever think of it as the gift 
of God! 

After traveling some four or five miles farther, we 
went into quarters on a high hill covered with low pine 
bushes. Of these we were accustomed to make booths, 
so as to escape notice should any one pass near. I find 
the following written in my diary — written some days 
after, but relating to this night's journey : " Went into 
quarters happy and thankful to Almighty God for pro- 
tection and direction thus far. No water this day, but 
fortunately we do not feel much thirsty. Slept but little 
during the day" (and I wish to say here that this is an 
accomplishment that I never could acquire. It matters 
but little what time in the night or early in the morning 
I go to bed, for when the sun rises I wake up ; and I 
must be very tired indeed if I can ever close my eyes to 
sleep in the daylight). " Kead the Bible, and wrote in 
diary. Beautiful day ! Hitherto have had every night 
clear most of the time, so that we could steer by the stars, 
though it has been raining frequently during the day. By 
this and other marks of Divine approbation, I felt pretty 
sure that God intended, at least, that we should proceed. 
I am now hid away in the woods by negroes ; and, 
though in the midst of dangers, such is my trust in God 
that I have not the least fear or uneasiness. I know He 
will bring us through, if it is best ; and if it is not, I don't 
wish to go. I know He will work the best thing for us. 
' The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 277 

that fear Him, to deliver them.' " And it appeared to me 
that the angel went before us, pointing out the way for 
us. How could we doubt, then ? and why should we 
fear, since not only the past is a guaranty for the future, 
but the promises themselves are enough to inspire faith 
in any one. 

Friday^ sixth nighty December 2d. Stars shone out as 
usual, 9ii|d the crescent moon looked us full in the face 
as we crept forth to resume our journey. This night 
passed with the usual incidents, varied according to cir- 
cumstances. Hunger and thirst were our chief torment- 
ors; though, in most instances, we chose rather to en- 
dure these light afflictions than to expose ourselves to 
detection. I remember we had great difficulty in pass- 
ing a long range of fires extending for half a mile. We 
found that an army was encamped there, as it was near 
the railroad leading to Augusta. These passed, we found 
ourselves in the midst of a very rich and populous coun- 
try. 

About one o'clock in the morning, after making long 
and careful reconnoissance, we ventured into a negro 
hut on a very rich plantation, where our wants, and they 
were pressing, were supplied in the usually liberal man- 
ner. Here, I remember, I got a draught of buttermilk, 
a favorite drink of mine, and the first I had tasted since 
my capture. This made me think of home and friends 
more than ever. Here we also learned of the state of 
the country, and the probable approach of Sherman ; 
and, as we were now only seven miles from Augusta, the 
roads being guarded, it stood us in hand to be very care- 
ful. We therefore decided to keep the by-roads, and to 
strike the Savannah Eiver a few miles below Augusta. 



278 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

So the negroes advised us ; but, of all the times we ever 
had, this one was the most trying; for in the great mul- 
tiplicity of roads, we could find none that would lead us 
long enough in one direction to justify us in following it 
more than a mile or two. Thus perplexed and defeated, 
and tired and sleepy, we threw ourselves on the ground, 
and, after committing my way to God, I remember I fell 
asleep almost instantly. In an hour or two wp^waked, 
chilled and numb with cold. I remember, too, that we 
were suddenly inspired with new resolution, and, select- 
ing a star, we made as straight a course as we could in 
that direction, heedless of all roads and other obstruc- 
tions. In our desperation to keep straight on, we passed 
almost under the eves of some houses, until we struck a 
road that seemed to lead in the exact direction we de- 
sired. This we followed, and soon were made conscious 
of our near approach to the river by the ringing of 
steam-boat bells and the noise of wheels in the water. 
Suddenly a dense fog shut out all stars from us and en- 
veloped us in thick darkness.' But it was nearly day- 
light. In this situation, we thought it best not to at- 
tempt the crossing of the river until the next night. We 
were about to seek quarters for the coming day, which 
now began to dawn, when our ears were saluted by the 
welcome sound of negroes singing in the distance. "We 
imagined they were approaching us, and so* they were. 
We stepped to the road-side and waited. Soon they 
came within hailing distance, and by great efforts — for 
my voice had become almost paralyzed and useless, ei- 
ther from suffering or disease, perhaps from both — I suc- 
ceeded in attracting the attention of this party — for there 
were five or six of them — and made them understand, in 
our usual way, our situation. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 279 

They expressed the liveliest sympathy for us, and cau- 
tioned us not to go a rod farther on that road, as there 
were guards stationed all along it, and for miles on the 
river; that every ferry-boat and flat had been removed 
or sunk, for fear of the " Yanks." They advised our 
immediate return to their quarters, assuring us that there 
were no " white men" within several miles of the planta- 
tion. So we did, and here I must relate what followed. 

These quarters we had passed but an hour before 
with great caution, for fear of waking the inmates ; but 
had we known who and what they were, we would have 
approached them with impunity. It was a collection of 
some half a dozen houses, rather better than the average, 
tenanted by perhaps twice that number of families. We 
were conducted to the main building, and, what was un- 
usual, it had two apartments. Here we were introduced 
to "Granny," the presiding personage of the little colony. 
She was an old lady of ninety-six, and yet she retained 
all the vivacity and sprightliness of a woman of forty or 
forty-five years of age. She was tall and commanding 
in appearance, and, save that she was a little bent with 
age, was a model of what slave-dealers would have pro- 
nounced " a valuable piece of property." She told me 
she had nearly all her life belonged to the same man, 
having raised her master and buried him. She could 
not tell now to whom she belonged, but supposed she 
was a part of "the estate." She set about preparing 
breakfast for us, and, while sitting there waiting and 
watching — for we could not banish the thought that we 
were in danger every moment of being discovered by 
some white man ; but, on being assured that there were 
none on the plantation, and that it was now seldom vis- 



280 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

ited, since the white inhabitants and many of the blacks 
had been taken to the "front" to oppose Sherman, and 
being assured that the children were already dispatched 
to different points as sentinels to announce the approach 
of any one in time for us to secrete ourselves, we began 
to feel very much at home. I well remember what a 
relief I experienced from the intense strain of protracted 
anxiety when I was assured by this old lady, in her 
warm and impressive manner, of our entire security. 
From her we learned many particulars in reference to 
the treatment of slaves in that region of country. To 
many a story of heart-rending cruelty did we listen. Oh, 
how my heart swelled with indignation, and my cheek 
burned with shame at her simple and yet graphic de- 
scription of the sufferings of the slaves and the brutality 
of their masters. All her own children but one had 
been sold and driven off before her eyes, and she had 
witnessed a whole generation rise and pass away. But 
a recital of these incidents would only be a repetition of 
what is heard and known to exist all through the more 
Southern slave-holding states. 

This old lady was devoutly pious, and her word and 
counsel were the law and gospel of all that little commu- 
nity. And oh, with what a prophetic rapture she looked 
upon the coming deliverance of her race from bondage ! 
As she spoke, her otherwise grave countenance beamed 
with almost angelic raptures; and I confess that more 
than once my eyes filled with tears as my own spiritual 
vision caught the rapture of her dream, and looked far 
down the stream of time, and saw her race and people 
blessed, honored, and elevated to nationality and free- 
dom. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 281 

111 her conversation, she addressed me in the terms of 
the bondman, "massa," which I forbade, for I felt more 
like bowing down to her than she to me. I felt like a 
child listening to the instructions of a parent, and more * 
than once I was reminded of my own dear sainted 
mother. 

After breakfast, which was by no means a poor or un- 
welcome one, we were secreted in a small stable but a 
few rods from the group of houses. Here, buried up in 
the soft hay, I tried to sleep, but my mind was too much 
affected by what I had seen and heard, and too much 
occupied with a hope of finally escaping, to allow of 
much slumber. 

While we were in the house, we were visited by the 
numerous members of the group of families there, all 
anxious to show some kindness. We seemed to be ob- 
jects of great curiosity and interest. Each one would 
approach us cautiously, extending a hand to welcome us 
to their hospitalities, and, after we were secreted in the 
stable, we were visited that day by others from adjoin- 
ing plantations, though they were very careful not to ex- 
pose us. 

This plantation, to which we had been so providen- 
tially directed by our mistakes and perplexities on the 
preceding night, proved to be the only one in the whole 
neighborhood, for five or six miles, where we would 
have been at all safe. It is one of the largest and rich- 
est in the South, extending several miles along the riv- 
er. It is the estate of the notorious Thomas Lamar, the 
kidnapper of the slave-ship " Eover" notoriety. It will 
be remembered by many that this vessel, some six or 
eight years ago, after vainly trying to land its cargo of 



282 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

350 negroes from the coast of Africa at the ports of 
Charleston and Savannah, ran up the river, landed its 
cargo on this plantation, and then pushed out into the 
stream, and was burned to avoid detection. Lamar 
was tried for his life in the civil courts at Augusta, es- 
caped the just penalty of hanging because he was rich, 
and a slave-owner and breeder, went to Charleston in a 
few years, and died of yellow fever. The property is 
now in the hands of his brother-in-law, Barney S. Dun- 
bar, who is living in great style with a black concubine, 
has four or five children, which he owns as slaves ; but 
he himself is now hid in the swamp, some four miles 
distant, to avoid the conscription officer. He is a rank 
secessionist, but swears he won't fight. This information 
I got from the negroes. And while said Barney is com- 
pelled to lie out in the swamp, I, his mortal enemy, whom 
he would gladly shoot, am nicely stowed away in his 
stable, preaching heresy to his slaves, which slaves carry 
food to him twice a day, but save the best of it for me. 
Oh, how these slaves love their masters! They have 
things about their own way now, and a jolly time they 
have. 

It will be remembered that nearly or quite one half of 
the cargo of slaves above referred to, numbering some 
600 in all, died on the passage ; of the balance, every 
woman is dead, and many of the men ; some of the youn- 
ger boys are still living. They are rare specimens in- 
deed. Their language is scarcely intelligible, though one 
or two with whom I conversed are very bright and intel- 
ligent. 

I will here copy again from my diary, as the shortest 
way of getting at what followed. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 283 

Saturday^ eighth nighty December 8d This night was the 
first we spent in sleep since we started. It was accepta- 
ble, indeed, though somewhat interrupted by a genuine 
African dance, held by the negroes of the plantation in 
the open air, around several blazing fires made from pine 
knots. This exercise, from its wild and fantastic nature, 
attracted our attention somewhat. Whether or not it 
was given in honor of our arrival we never learned. 

About 9 o'clock, A.M., December 4:th, our breakfast 
was sent to us, and consisted of biscuit, beefsteak, baked 
potatoes, fried eggs, and coffee (rye or wheat). This was 
the best meal we had had in the Confederacy. We 
praised God in our hearts and took courage. Heard 
heavy cannonading in the forenoon toward the front. 
We knew that Sherman was coming ; and, as we could 
learn through the negroes, the country all around was in 
perfect terror, all except the negroes. In most cases they, 
too, in the presence of their masters, were terribly scared, 
but when by themselves, or with us, their joy knew no 
bounds ; it became perfectly wild and extravagant. But 
let a white man not a Yank approach them, and they were 
ready to die of terror for fear "Massa Sherman" would 
come, and they would all be carried off or killed by the 
"Yanks." 

Was Sherman indeed coming ? Oh, how we prayed 
that that cannonading might ct)me nearer, and that our 
lines might come rolling on, crashing over the broken 
and fleeing columns of the enemy, until we should be in- 
cluded in the captures ; but we were doomed to disap- 
pointment. Sherman did not know toe were there, and 
we had no means of informing him. Perhaps he would 
not have changed the programme of the campaign, or his 



284 SKETCHES OF PEISON LIFE. 

line of " march to the sea" much, if he had even been in- 
formed of the strong position we held. But this consid- 
eration was not the more comforting to us. Lay still all 
day. Eead and wrote some. 

Sunday nighty December 4:th. Went to bed, expecting an- 
other good sleep, but about 11 o'clock P. M. were roused 
up by Cuffee, the driver on the plantation, half frightened 
out of his senses, exclaiming, in a husky whisper, "Say! 
say, massa ! massa ! Come out dah ! come, come, quick/ 
Gor A'mighty, hurry ! White man in de house huntin' 
for yees ! Hurry, hurry ! God's sake, hurry ! Break for 
de hollah down dah !" 

The next moment he was gone, and out of hearing and 
out of sight, and we were "piling out" in double-quick 
time, and we did "break for hollah" sure enough, blun- 
dering over bush, and brake, and brier pell-mell, regard- 
less of head, or heels, or any thing else, except escape 
from "de white man" aforesaid. Tumbled down a small 
precipice ; brought up in an old brier-patch ; tore our 
clothes badly, besides receiving sundry other wounds that 
we cared less about, till presently we found ourselves, 
panting and almost breathless, in a deep ravine, listening 
to what was going on at the houses. We could hear dis- 
tinctly a man cursing roundly, and apparently in great 
displeasure, at what he denominated as some " dog 07i ras- 
cality about heyah sumwhar;" said he expected they 
were hid now some place about the house. Cuffee de- 
clared they were not, and affirmed his honesty and integ- 
rity with such vehemence that the master (for it proved 
to be Barney Dunbar) was obliged to give up the search. 

We supposed, from the occurrence, that we had been 
betrayed by some one, and that we were the individuals 



SKETCHES OF PKISON LIFE. 285 

alluded to in this mild conversation ; but it was other- 
wise. "Barney" was after two other "Yanks" that had 
been seen the night before going toward the river. Oar 
danger, however, was none the less, for, armed as he was 
with two loaded revolvers, one of which he carried in 
each hand, and a coward at that, he would not hesitate at 
any deed of meanness. 

The result was, however, we nearly perished with the 
cold in the woods that night, not daring either to return 
to the stable or to lie down where we were ; and, fearing 
lest we should be pursued, we had gone so far into the 
woods that the negroes could not find us that night. 
About daylight our ears were saluted by the shrill blast 
of a horn, and the loud call of the negroes. We mistook 
this for the signal of our pursuit, and we waited patient- 
ly the issue. But it soon occurred to me that it was the 
usual morning call, and so it proved. 

I then crawled on my hands and knees up to within 
speaking distance of the house, in hopes to learn some- 
thing of the true state of affairs. Did not succeed. We 
then fell back to the wT)ods again, to wait farther devel- 
opments. In a few moments I heard some one chopping 
far back in the timber, where I knew Charlie, the black- 
smith on the plantation, had been the day before. 

This Charlie was a knowing one, and had accompanied 
his master through the Mexican War. He had assumed 
the special charge of us. Proceeding carefully in the di- 
rection of the chopping, to our utter relief we found him ; 
whereupon he gave us the history of the whole mystery, 
adding that " Granny" had been hunting for us from the 
time it was light enough to see, and that she was in great 
distress lest she should not see us again. We soon re- 



286 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

lieved her anxiety, however, and she, in turn, relieved our 
hunger by a good breakfast. 

After spending two more days and a night with these 
clever people, and after they had washed and mended our 
soiled and tattered garments, supplying us with whatever 
they could possibly spare, tearing up some of their best 
new cotton cloth to make us haversacks and towels, tak- 
ing their stockings off their own feet and giving them to 
us, " Granny" giving me the best pair she had (God bless 
the old saint !) ; after cooking meat, and bread, and po- 
tatoes, and filling these haversacks for us, and after we 
were satisfied that Sherman had passed Augusta, and was 
making for Savannah, and after repeated prayers for our 
safety and success, these good people grasped our hands 
with all the fervid warmth and affection of parents and 
children, and bade us "good-by," and we turned our faces 
toward the North Star, setting out on a journey of nearly 
three hundred miles to reach the mountains of Eastern 
Tennessee. 

It was with real sadness and many misgivings that we 
left these people, for they assured us that they would be 
able to keep us all winter, and they would gladly do it, 
rather than have us risk our lives again. But the ties 
of kindred and home, friends and country, were stronger 
than their solicitations, and, about 10 o'clock P.M., De- 
cember 6th, we addressed ourselves to the perilous under- 
taking, not, however, without repeatedly invoking God's 
blessing and protection. 

But our expectations were soon cut short, for, after two 
nights' hard traveling, and the usual number of incidents 
and dangers passed, on the morning of the 8th of Decem- 
ber, at about four o'clock, it being very dark and cloudy, 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 287 

though it had been clear nearly all night, we were .star- 
tled by the loud baying of hounds, and the voice of a man 
calling to us within a few feet of us. He was mounted 
on a splendid horse, and I could see, by the dim reflection 
from the clouds, that he was dressed in Rebel clothes. 
He hailed us with "Who are you?" "Travelers," we 
replied. After repeating the question, and receiving the 
same answer, he replied, "All right," and passed on. But 
we suspected mischief, and prepared for the worst. Aft- 
er traveling about half a mile or more, we suddenly 
dodged from the road into an open field on our left, 
crossed fences and fields, retraced and crossed our track 
time and again, making large circles and detours through 
thickets and across ravines ; and, after wandering in this 
manner for two or three hours, it being now broad day- 
light, we threw a few pine boughs together to screen us 
from open sight, and then threw ourselves upon the 
ground to rest. 

But I had no sooner straightened out my weary limbs, 
than I heard, far in the distance, the deep baying of the 
^^ bloodhounds. '''' I said to my companion, "Do you hear 
that?" "Yes," hissed through his clinched teeth. We 
listened. The baying grew louder. We were silent for 
a moment. Neither looked at the other ; but we well 
knew what was passing before us. In those few moments, 
oh, how our visions of home faded — how our hopes crum- 
bled — how our hearts sickened! All our past toils and 
our future expectations crowded into one bitter moment 
— one terrible resolve, and it was past. "Father, Thy 
will be done !" relieved me, and I said, " Up, let us be go- 
ing!" and, gathering up .our few "traps," we were mov- 
ing forward at a rapid pace, we knew not where, neither 



288 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

did ^e care much. Soon we ascended a steep hill, from 
which we saw a plantation in the distance. Thinking 
that a house might serve us in close pursuit, we went 
toward it, but, discovering a stream of water passing 
through the fields, and no house being in sight, we con- 
cluded to cross the stream and conceal ourselves beneath 
a high bank on the opposite side. This we did, and for 
a few moments we could hear nothing from our pursuers. 
A faint hope flashed upon us that possibly we had eluded 
themi 

But soon the loud yelp and yell, accompanied by the 
hunter's horn, assured us that they still were on our 
track; and on, on they came, and, having struck our 
fresh trail, we soon saw them descending the hill-side, led 
by a monster black hound, trained to the exalted position 
of "leading a pack." 

At first sight of them, we resolved to stand our ground 
and defend ourselves as best we could, and, in case of ne- 
cessity, to leap into the water, which was half-breast deep 

near us. But, on a nearer approach, K suggested 

that we " climb ;" and thinking perhaps our resistance 
might form a pretext for insult and injury by our cap- 
tors, I accepted the suggestion, and, mounting the bank, 
we sprang up into the boughs of an oak ; but, no sooner 
had we cleared our distance, than the hounds came bound- 
ing full six feet high up the tree after us. Fortunately, 
we were beyond their reach, which fact seemed to aggra- 
vate their ferocity. 

I had, then and there, a few moments' profitable reflec- 
tion. Looking down into those deep mouths gaping 
upon me, and those hideous teeth that had torn the flesh 
of many a ma/i, I thought of the many helpless women 



SKETCHES OF PlilSON LIFE. 



289 







Kecajjtuied. 

and children that had been mangled by them — of the 
poor slaves that had been hunted down like wild beasts, 
and then, when at bay, had been shot and wounded, so 
that the dogs could '■''go in and wool the nigs,^^ as they 
termed this interesting performance. 

But soon our attention was called to our captor, who 
was at this time just descending the hill-side in hot pur- 
suit, armed with a double-barreled shot-gun. Approach- 
ing nearer, he began to curse us in true Southern style, 
not excepting the Southern slang, and closing with the 
ei)ithQi ^^ AhoUtiomstj^^ with a qualifying word. 

N 



290 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

Coming closer, lie asked us if we "surrendered," at the 
same time making sundry demonstrations witli his gun. 
I replied "that I did not see what else we could do, as 
we could not go much farther in our last direction (point- 
ing up the tree), and we were not prepared to contend 
with his dogs." 

With many chivalrous remarks and demonstrations, 
he approached us, ordering us to throw down our clubs, 
blankets, and haversacks. By this time he was joined 
by three other men, also mounted and armed, and, after 
a brief consultation, we were ordered down from the 
tree. We replied that we were now their prisoners, and 
we hoped they would call off their dogs before we de- 
scended. To this they replied that the dogs would not 
hurt us much. 

My friend, being below me, was obliged to descend 
first ; and no sooner had he come within reach of these 
monsters than they all sprang upon him, tearing his 
clothes, and otherwise injuring him. On our earnest ex- 
postulation against such treatment, the dogs were partial- 
ly removed ! but, on my coming down, they fell upon me 
in a similar manner, but did me no injury. 

After searching us for arms and evidence (for we had 
no money), about the first question they asked was, 
" What do you uns all want to come down heah fo' to 
free all our niggers ?" I replied, " We were not in that 
business noioy Whereupon there sprang up quite a 
spirited argument in reference to the two sections of our 
country, and their respective institutions and policies, in 
which I took pains to tell them in plain terms what I 
thought of slavery, and what I thought of the policy of 
hunting down United States officers with bloodhounds 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 291 

as though they were beasts of prey ; and, finding that 
we would talk, and only laughed at their pretended se- 
verity, they soon began to exhibit a much better spirit, 
and finally invited us to the house, where the lady pre- 
pared a good breakfast for us, to which we did ample 
justice. 

Several ladies from the neighborhood had come itf to 
see the *' live Yanks" that had been caught that morn- 
ing, and I improved the opportunity of delivering as 
strong an Abolition lecture as ever I did in my life. I 
felt that the occasion demanded it, and God gave me 
words of utterance that brought tears to their eyes. Out 
of pity, perhaps, for our unfortunate condition, they did 
not attempt to deny much of what I said, but replied in 
a despairing way, "Oh, I wish this cruel war was end- 
ed I" I was satisfied that they were sincere, at least, in 
that wish. I told them I hoped it would not end so long 
as there was any opposition to the government left ; and 
especially as long as any of the curse that caused the 
war existed. 

After dinner, we were marched to Edgefield jail, eight 
miles distant, through a most pitiless, pelting rain that 
froze as it fell ; so that, when we arrived there, we were 
just as wet as though we had been plunged into the riv- 
er, and so benumbed with cold that it was with difiiculty 
we could stand. In this plight, the enrolling-officer who 
had command of the place ordered us thrown into a cell, 
through the iron bars of which the wind howled in hid- 
eous mockery of our fate. 

I bethought me of one more appeal, and it was not in 
vain, for the jailor was a mason ; and on my certifying to 
the same fact, we were taken to the basement, where an 



292 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

old negro had kindled a fire, and there we were permit- 
ted to dry our rags before being locked up. Had not 
this act of kindness been done, we certainly must have 
perished before morning. 

We had been allowed to retain what rations were in 
our haversacks, except what the hounds ate (and that 
wafe about one half), and, in examining me, they had fail- 
ed to find my manuscript and diary that I had concealed 
in my nether garments. Had they found these, I should 
have swung, I suppose, from the first good limb, or per- 
haps been made food for their hounds. With what ra- 
tions we had, and the little afforded us at the jail, we 
managed to keep alive till I had an opportunity to send 

a note to Mrs. Gr , a good Union lady living in the 

place, who sent the following in reply, accompanied by a 
most excellent dinner : 

"Edgefield, South Carolina, December llth, 1864. 

"Lieutenant : Dear Sir, — Your very gentle- 
manly note is before me. I did not know until its re- 
ception that there were any United States officers in the 
place. I will come over this evening at three o'clock. 
Any thing I can do for either of you will give me much 
satisfaction. 1 have been able to do but very little, ow- 
ing to my circumstances being limited ; but I am willing 
to divide the last iota I have, rather than that any one 
in your situation should suffer. I would certainly have 
sent you something to eat had I known of your being 
there. Yours very truly, 

"Mrs. W. W. G ." 



Oh, how thankful I was to her and to God for thus 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 293 

remembering us in our distress. Having but one old 
blanket, and an old rag or two in the cell, we suffered 
TYiuch from cold, as by this time it was very inclement. 
Waking in the morning (for we slept from sheer exhaus- 
tion), we were shivering with cold, and were obliged to 
resort to a system of violent exercise to keep from freez- 
ing. Thus we managed for two or three days and nights ; 

but, after Mrs. G 's note, we suffered no more from 

hunger. She communicated the facts to a Mr. B , a 

wealthy and influential citizen of the place, whose heart 
was for the Union, and he and his good lady vied with 

Mrs. G in sending us good things, which fact coming 

to the knowledge of the enrolling-ofl&cer, we were ordered 
to leave for Columbia, South Carolina, via Post Ninety- 
six, that afternoon. 

Our conveyance to ISTinety-six, thirty miles distant, was 
a two-horse hack. This was a relief to us, and we be- 
came more and more reconciled to return. While halt- 
ing a few moments before leaving town, I saw Mr. B 

with a bundle under his arm, which he endeavored to 
conceal from the crowd. Approaching the hack, he 
dropped his bundle at my feet, at the same time giving 
me a sly wink. Gathering it up, I found it to contain 
about two dozen excellent biscuits. This made us all 
right for the balance of the way. We were guarded by 
two young men of wealthy parentage ; had been in the 
service some time, and understood military etiquette. 
One of them was a nephew of John C. Calhoun, the oth- 
er a son of Dr. Jennings, a leading member of the South 
Carolina Legislature. On our way we talked freely on 
politics, and of the policy of the respective governments. 
Soon the negro question was broached, and I was asked 



294 SKETCHES OF PEISON LIFE. 

to give mj opinion on it, which I did with my usual 
frankness. This enraged the driver, who, by the way, I 
had learned was a man of high standing, but had resort- 
ed to stage-driving to avoid conscription ; and, being a 
little intoxicated, he was very abusive in his language. 
I therefore refused to talk with him ; but, after being 
repeatedly insulted and threatened by him, I told him 
plainly that no gentleman would make use of the lan- 
guage he had done in an argument, and especially to a 
prisoner ; upon which he struck me in the face with his 
fist, and, becoming exasperated, he caught up an iron 
wrench, and assaulted me with a determination to kill 
me. Failing in this, the guards interfering, he began to 
beg for a pistol to shoot me. This was refused him by 
the guards, on the ground that they considered him more 
in fault than I was; but for some time he was bent on 
taking my life. I then had an opportunity of seeing an 
infuriated ruffian, and I thought of the tender mercies of 
the slave-driver. 

Becoming a little pacified, we drove on a mile or two, 
and, halting at a country tavern or grog-shop, and find- 
ing some of his boon companions there, he related the 
affair to them, declaring that " he ought to have killed 
me," and farther, '' that he meant to do it yet." There- 
upon they all began to clamor for my blood. I had the 
felicity at that place of hearing what they in South Car- 
olina thought of Abolitionists, for this was my chief of- 
fense. Arrangements were progressing favorably for 
hanging me, when the guards again interfered and saved 
my life. 

Nothing farther of interest occurred on our way to 
ISTinety-six, where we were placed on board the cars, and 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 295 

were soon on our way back to prison at Columbia, where 
we arrived on the morning of the 13th of December, hav- 
ing been absent seventeen days and nights; thankful to 
God for His many mercies and deliverances, but not very 
thankful to the Eebels for again returning us to prison. 



296 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



CHAPTER XYIL 

FIVE WEEKS AMONG THE LOYAL LEAGUE AT CHARLES- 
TON. 

"I LEFT Roper Hospital in company with the other of- 
ficers confined there, and marched up King Street, to 
take the cars for Columbia, South Carolina. I escaped 
from the guard by stepping out of the ranks and run- 
ning up a pair of stairs into a daguerrian room. The 
artist, at that moment, was at the front, looking at the 
prisoners passing. I at once passed into the back yard 
unperceived by any one, and secreted myself under the 
stairs, remaining there until after dark that night. I 
then scaled a high wall into another yard, which seemed 
as difficult to escape from as the first. While there, I 
was joined by another officer who had escaped, and, by 
aiding each other, we succeeded in getting out of that 
yard into another. This yard had formerly been occu- 
pied as a livery-stable-yard, but the building had been 
burned, the bare walls remaining. While standing there, 
devising some plan to get into the street, one " of our 
shells struck the old wall, scattering the bricks, mortar, 
and dust all over us, but, fortunately, without damage to 
either of us. We at length succeeded in opening one of 
the burned doors, and emerged into the street. We at 
once made our way to the house of a citizen, whom we 
had been assured before was friendly to us. We were 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 297 

both dressed in Eebel uniform, and, as we came up to 
the stoop, what was our surprise to see another of our 
officers sitting there, who had also just escaped. He ap- 
peared very much alarmed, supposing us to be Confeder- 
ate soldiers. The lady of the house at once pointed us 
to an out-house, where we would be safe for the present, 
while her husband had time to see to the other officer. 
As soon as he was disposed of, we were brought into the 
house, and furnished with supper and lodging. In the 
morning our host went and made arrangements with an- 
other party to take charge of us, and keep us in a less 
exposed place, till they could perfect a plan to get us out 
of the city. Just before leaving for our new boarding- 
place, a Mrs. called on us, and we had a very pleas- 
ant interview. Before she left, she gave us two nice 
large sponge-cakes, a bottle of wine, and farther told us 
if we were so unfortunate as to be recaptured, which she 
hoped we would not, to inform her, and any thing she 
could do for us should be done. Our second friend lived 
by himself, in a neat little house, surrounded by a high 
fence. Here we had the liberty of the yard and house, 
and were safe from exposure day and night. Our friend 
invited in his Union friends to see us, so we had plenty 
of company, and they all were lavish in bringing us 
presents to supply our wants. After a sojourn of one 
week with him, we were invited back to our first friend's 
for the purpose of arranging matters to leave the city. 
That evening I went out with friend Ko. 1, after disguis- 
ing myself in a white coat, to find a party and see about 

a boat to take us to . "While in the street we came 

in sight of a house surrounded by guards, and a Rebel 

officer trying to gain admittance. We at once turned 

N2 



298 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

into another street, but soon encountered a like scene 
just before us. We were on the opposite side of the 
street, and, as the officer saw us, he crossed over, stopped 
us, and made inquiry as to who lived in that house, stat- 
ing that he was looking for escaped Yankee officers that 
they knew were being secreted in the houses by the citi- 
zens. He eyed me very closely, but not suspecting me or 
my friend, let us pass on unmolested, which I considered 
a fortunate escape for me. Fearing for the safety of the 
one who remained at his house, my friend soon left me, 
after giving me the proper direction, and returned to his 
own house to take care of the one left there. I soon 
found the place without difficulty, but the moon had 
now risen, and it was too light for farther operations 
that night. My companion soon joined me. The next 
day friend No. 3 came and took me in the daytime, still 
disguised, to see the city, and in our walk we visited 
every wharf, dock-yard, arsenal, and battery in the city. 
At one point we staid over two hours, where I could see 
our ' dear old flag' floating in the breeze, and so near 
was I that I could count the stripes plainly ; also watched 
the firing of our guns, and took a sketch of the harbor, 
which I expected to use soon. At night we were all as- 
sembled again at the house of friend No. 3, where we 
had a bountiful supper, my friend having been piloted 
there, as soon as dark, by the wife of friend No. 3 ; after 
which we were all taken to the house of friend No. 4 — a 
safe place for us till some plan could be devised for us 
to escape from the city. We remained there about two 
weeks, waiting for the nights to become dark, during 
which time we received the kindest treatment and best 
of care. During this time we formed the acquaintance of 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 299 

a large number of Union friends, both male and female, 
all of whom seemed willing and anxious to do what they 
could for our comfort, and to assist us in making our es- 
cape. The night we left, the colored man belonging to 
No. 4 came to see us. His master had been arrested on 
suspicion of aiding Union officers in escaping. It was at 
once decided that we had better change our quss^ters, and 
the servant of the lady of the house went with ns, and 
secreted us in the house of friend No. 5, in another part 
of the city less suspicious, but we kept up correspond- 
ence with the party all the time we remained in the city, 
and subsequently learned that nothing could be proven 
against him, and he was released. While here, a plan 
was fixed upon for our escape as follows : a negro wom- 
an, who had escaped from up the country, came to the 
city disguised as a man. She stole her son from his 
master on her way there, and, learning that Federal offi- 
cers were in the city trying to get within our lines, vol- 
unteered to take a party out with her and make an es- 
cape down the bay. This colored woman and her son 
got a boat, and the night was fixed for a start. At dark 
they repaired to the boat to bail out the water, while the 
officers were to follow later in the evening. While en- 
gaged in that work, a second party of Federal officers 
came to the same wharf to escape in another boat. 
Shortly after, an officer in charge of a guard came down 
(for it seems the negroes had been betrayed), and, seeing 
the negroes running, gave the order to fire, but, instead 
of firing at the negroes, one of the shots took efiect in 
the ofQcer's knee. All but two of the negroes escaped 
by jumping into the water, and remaining until the ex- 
citement was over. The Federal ofiicers, meanwhile, 



300 SKETCHES OF PEISON LIFE. 

were secreted by a fence, and made their escape by run- 
ning and hiding in the burnt district. While on our 
way to the wharf, an Irishwoman informed us of the 
state of affarrs, and advised us not to go in that direction. 
We returned to the house of No. 5, where we remained 
till the following day, when suddenly an officer with a 
guard cQjifronted the house ; due notice of which was 
given us, and we escaped through the back yard to the 
house of friend No. 6. 

" We remained here several days, closely concealed by 
our trusty friend, for there was some excitement in the 
city over the report that Yankee prisoners were being 
harbored by some of the inhabitants, and it was deemed 
unsafe for us to go out much. One evening, however, 
one of our party ventured to call upon one of the loyal 
ladies who had been so kind to us, but whose husband 
was a bitter Eebel, and was engaged in blockade-run- 
ning, and was at that time away. 

" While enjoying the pleasant hours of the evening 
with his loyal friend, steps were heard in the front yard, 
and soon the voice of the husband was heard in the hall. 
There was no opportunity to escape, and the only thing 
that could be done was to hide, and trust to luck. But 
where ? was another difficult question. 

"A closet in the ladies' bedroom was the only refuge. 

Mrs. hurried him into it, and was just fastening the 

door, when her husband stood at the bedroom door, and, 
trying it, found it locked. She sprung to open it, and en- 
countered her ' liege lord' in a towering passion, who de- 
manded to know of this strange proceeding. 

" He at once accused her of infidelity, of receiving 
visits frotn gentlemen in his absence, and farther, he had 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 301 

heard one in the house as he came in the hall, and de- 
manded to know the truth of the whole matter. 

"She could only reply, in tears, that she was true to 
him ; that all the visits she had ever received were only 
friendly ones, and she begged him not to condemn her, 
but believe all she told him. 

"Being dissatisfied with this explanation, he farther 
demanded to know what had become of the man who 
was there when he came in. His wife made no reply, 
and he began to search the room, when, oh horrible! in 
the closet he found a man full dressed in Kebel uni- 
form. 

" ' You villain ! what are you here for? Guilty, both 
of you ; bring me my pistol, till I punish the guilty 
pair. Police! help!' shouted the husband. 

" ' Don't, my dear husband, kill him, for he is not 
guilty ; let him go.' 

" ' Confess all, or I will kill you both,' said the en- 
raged husband. 

" ' As God lives, we are innocent of any crime,' pleaded 
the suffering wife. 

" '■ Away with such talk, you guilty wretches ; I will 
not hear it,' said the now infuriated husband, as he rushed 
out of the room to get his pistol, while the unfortunate 
man jumped out of the first window and made good his 
escape. How the affair ended I never learned, as I left 
the city shortly after, and none of us cared to meet the 
*• blockade-runner again, or subject his wife to so severe a 
trial. 

^^ Her loyalty cost a price. # 

" Matters quieted down after a few days, and another 
plan was proposed by our friends of the Loyal League 



802 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

to get US inside our lines at Morris Island. The plan 
was, to disguise us as Englishmen, get passes for us to 

cross the bridge over Cooper Eiver, and proceed to , 

where a gentleman was ready for a consideration (which 
our friends supplied) to take us to Morris Island. 

" The time arrived, and, to allay suspicion, it was pro- 
posed that I should start first, and go in the daytime, 
and if I succeeded the others were to follow. I was 
nicely fitted out in citizen's dress, with an English riding- 
hat. My passes, procured by one of the League, repre- 
sented me as an English tourist, and I started out. 

"I passed through the city without molestation, meet- 
ing several other of the officers disguised as foreigners, 
and walking with members of the 'League.' I passed 
the pickets at one end of the bridge, had had my passes 
examined by the lieutenant in charge of the guard at 
the other, and was just passing along, when one of the 
guards, a member of the 32d Georgia, who had guarded 
us elsewhere, said to the lieutenant, ' I know that man ; 
he is a Yank.' * Halt there, you Yank !' and I halted. 
' Here, corporal, take two men, and take this man back 
to the provost marshal's office in the city, and turn him 
over as a suspicious character,' was the next news that 
greeted my ears. ' Farewell, my visions of home and . 
friends,' said I to myself, as I plodded back between my 
guards. The examination at the provost marshal's was 
too close for me to wool them, and I was written down 
as a Yankee prisoner of war. I was sent to the jail a* 
few days, and then forwarded to Columbia, where I joined 
the otlUr officers at Camp Sorghum, from whom I had 
been separated five weeks."'^* 

* Captain Tilford escaped again from Camp Sorghum, after being 
there two or three davs, and made our lines. — A. O. A. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 303 



CHAPTER XVIII. 

R*EBEL BARBARITIES. 

We propose, in the following brief record, to indicate 
by a few facts, which we know to be truly and fairly 
stated, the manner in which Union prisoners have been 
dealt with by the Rebel authorities. To some the record 
will be distasteful ; for there are many who desire to be- 
lieve no evil of Davis and his fellows, however indisputa- 
ble the proofs. To many a tender-hearted reader it may 
seem too horrible for decent recital. Yet it is a true rec- 
ord, and in the history of the rebellion will form an im- 
portant chapter, to be read with tears, indeed, but written 
in adamant. 

The illustrations on the following pages will bring to 
the eye features of cruelty which could not well be de- 
scribed by the pen. They have been selected, not be- 
cause they were more effective than a hundred others 
which we might give, but because we had not space to 
give all. We have limited our illustrations to a special 
class of our prisoners, namely, those who from exposure 
and lack of food have lost their feet. These illustrations 
are the exact fac-similes of photographs. They do not 
come to us from a distance. A large number of the vic- 
tims have been for a long time within an hour's ride of 
this city. Of the class represented in our illustrations, 
there were, in the prisoners paroled and sent to Wilming- 
ton on the 26th of March, two hundred and eighty-seven 



304 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



cases. These had, from starvation and frost in Southern 
prisons, lost their feet wholly or in part. These cases 
were placed in the hands of Chaplain J. J. Geer, of the 
183d Ohio Volunteers. Chaplain Geer, from whom we 
received the photographs, and whose statements are per- 
fectly reliable, has done much for the.^ comfort of these 
unfortunate men. But his statements do not stand alone. 
Others have visited the hospital in which the prisoners 
were confined. One of them writes : 

" I wish every eye in the land could rest on the poor 
fellows in the Geer Hospital, and especially every one 
who believes in treating leniently this rebellion, could go 
as I did, from bed to bed, and see the blankets lifted to 
expose a pair of stumps /ror/i wliich the feet had rotted off 



-^%aj^. 




John W. January, Corporal Co. B, 4th Illinoid. 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 805 

hy cold and exposure. And this not in one case, nor two, 
nor ten, nor twenty, but scores ! Men who had commit- 
ted no crime, but were honorable soldiers, brave, loyal, 
true to their government, but made prisoners by the for- 
tunes of war, and, as such, entitled to food and comforta- 
ble shelter. As I went from bed to bed, and from ward 
to ward, and found, now a son of Massachusetts, next a 
boy from Maine, then a soldier from Michigan, or from 
Indiana, or Kew York, differing from one another only 
in some new and more horrid form of gangrene of the 
feet and legs, which left the bone protruding sometimes 
six inches beyond the flesh, decaying, putrid, offensive, 
while they could be strengthened with food a few days 
and made able to bear an amputation, I felt almost un- 
able to endure the strain upon my sensibilities." 

These unhappy prisoners have under oath given the 
record of their terrible experience, which, in many cases, 
is too loathsome for detail. You do not want to know, 
gentle reader, to what means these men swear they were 
obliged to resort to keep from absolutely starving. Only 
the very strong survived at all, and these come back to 
us pitiable wrecks of what they once were — how pitiable 
let our illustrations show. Nearly all whose affidavits 
have been taken, attest that they were robbed of their 
clothing, receiving in its place a dirty blanket or a bun- 
dle of tattered rags. In regard to all the prisons the uni- 
form testimony is that no shelter of any kind was provid- 
ed for the prisoners ; that they were thrown into stock- 
ades and exposed to all sorts of weather ; and that they 
had not received rations adequate to sustain vitality. 

Byron Churchill swears that when he was captured he 
was, by the sanction of Eebel authority, robbed of all his 



306 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



clotliing except his shirt and drawers ; that the prison- 
ers, for want of other shelter, burrowed in the ground ; 
and that, "by reason of exposure, starvation, cruelties, 
and countless outrages inflicted on him by the Eebels 
while a prisoner in their hands, a part of the time he was 
bereft of his reason, lost all the toes on his left foot," and 
has otherwise been reduced to the condition shown in the 
illustration. 




Smith and Churchill. 

John H. Matthews, a corporal in Company F, of the 
4th Pennsylvania, testifies that he enlisted in this com- 
pany August 29th, 1861 ; was taken prisoner October 
12th, 1863, in Meade's retreat from Culpepper, and that, 
after various marchings and countermarchings, he was 
taken to Eichmond. For three days he was without any 
food. He testifies that, in long marches which the pris: 
oners were compelled to make from one place of confine- 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



307 



ment to another, the Kehel authorities issued, for three 
days' rations, one pint of shelled corn. This prisoner 
lost the use of both his feet. 




John H, Matthews, Coipoial Co F, 4th Pennsylvania. 

Calvin Bates testifies that. *'bj reason of exposure and 
other inhumanities practiced upon him at Andersonville, 
his feet decayed, so that both of them have since been 



308 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



cut off at the ankle with scissors, and that previous to 
his imprisonment he was in good health. 




Calvin Bates (Fig. 1), Corporal Co. E, 20th Maine. 



Many of these sworn statements were the words of dy- 
ing men. Others still live, monuments of the wanton 
cruelty of the Eebel authorities. 

We have stated that there were two hundred and 
eighty-seven cases of the character represented by our 
illustrations. On the ninth of April there were still left 
at Andersonville, Georgia, 2500 poor fellows, who re- 
mained there because they were unable to march. 

As soon as these prisoners return to us they are treated 
with all possible kindness. None of those heroes who 
have died on the battle-field are more worthy of remem- 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



309 




Calvin Bates (Fig. 2). 

brance thaii such men as Doctors Palmer and Buzzell, 
who literally worked themselves to death in their efforts 
to alleviate the sufferings of our prisoners. Many of 
these famished prisoners come to us so exhausted that 
they are unable to receive proper food, and many of 
them die from the change in diet. 

Dr. J. C. Dalton, Professor of Physiology and Microscop- 
ic Anatomy in the College of Physicians and Surgeons 



310 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

in this city, thus reports respecting the general condition 
of the prisoners delivered up at Wilmington : 

" The better cases were walking about the streets, per- 
haps barefooted, or with no other clothing than a pair 
of white cotton drawers and an old blanket or over-coat, 
both equally ragged. In these, the slow, dragging gait, 
listless manner, and cavernous, inexpressive look of the 
face, together with the general emaciation, formed a pe- 
culiar aspect, by which they alone attracted the attention 
of the passer-by, and by which they were at once dis- 
tinguished from the other convalescent soldiers. There 
was no occasion to inquire in Wilmington which were 
our returned prisoners ; after half a day's experience any 
one could distinguish them at a glance. Many of them, 
who had strength to crawl about in this manner, were 
prevented from doing so by the want of clothing. Major 
Eandlete, the provost marshal of Wilmington, told me 
that on one day forty of these men came into our lines 
absolutely as naked as they were horn. I inquired of a con- 
siderable number of them, whom I saw in the hospitals 
confined to their beds, naked or with only a shirt, and 
covered with a hospital blanket, what had become of 
their clothing, and was told that they had thrown away 
what remained as soon as they could obtain shelter, be- 
cause it was so ragged, filthy, and full of vermin. One 
of them, on being told that the Sanitary Commission had 
sent them flannel shirts and drawers, caught at the word 
with a childish eagerness, and repeated the good news to 
his companions with a faint, half-imbecile smile, as long 
as I was within hearing. With the great majority of the 
feebler ones personal cleanliness was a thing which they 
appeared to have entirely forgotten. They no longer 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 811 

retained sufficient strength, either of mind or body, to 
appreciate or correct the degradation to which months 
of unavoidable uncleanliness had reduced them. In the 
most extreme cases the condition of the mind, as well as 
the expression of the face, was tihsolntelj fatuous, and the 
aspect of the patient was not that of a strong man re- 
duced by illness, but that of an idiotic pauper, who had 
been such from his birth. Xevertheless, several of the 
surgeons informed me that the condition of the patients 
had visibly improved since their reception, and that I 
could not then form an adequate idea of what it was 
when they entered our lines. In that case it must have 
been lamentable beyond description. 

" The testimony of both men and officers was uniform 
as to the causes of their unnatural condition. These 
causes were, first, starvation, and, second, exposure. Only 
such officers and men as could procure money were able 
to obtain any thing like sufficient nourishment.- Some 
of them told me that during the entire winter they liad 
received absolutely no meat ; a pint of corn-meal, often 
with the cob ground in, sometimes with and sometimes 
without salt, a handful of "cow -peas,'' and sometimes 
sorghum molasses, constituted their usual ration. TThen 
in hospital, they had only very thin corn-meal gruel and 
a little corn-bread. To the debilitv occasioned bv this in- 
sufficient food was added that resulting from exposure. 
It was a common thing for a prisoner, immediately on 
being taken, to be stripped of his clothing — shoes, socks, 
pantaloons, shirts, and drawers — and to ^ left with only 
an old and worn-out pair of drawers, and perhaps an 
equally worn -out shirt and blanket given him in ex- 
change. This robbery of clothing was also practiced 



312 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



more or less upon officers. Even an assistant surgeon, 
who was captured within four miles of Kichmond, told 
me that he was robbed of his flannel shirt while standing 
in front of the Libby Prison, and in presence of the Keb- 
el officer in charge of the squad. This was immediately 
after his arrival in the city, and when he had been, for 
the three days succeeding his capture, entirely withoht 
food. With the scanty clothing thus left them the men 
were kept during the winter, often without any shelter, 
excepting such as they could contrive to provide by ex- 
cavating a sort of rifle-pit in the ground, and covering it 
with old blankets or canvas, as their supply of fuel was 
insufficient, and sometimes entirely wanting. Even in 
the hospitals their suffering from cold was very great. 
" One of the most melancholy sights in Wilmington 




Benjamin T. Daugherty, Co. K, Slst Illinoig (Fig. 1). 



SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 



313 



was that to be seen at the ' Geer' hospitals. In these 
hospitals were collected all those patients who had lost 
their feet, either wholly or in part, by freezing, from their 
exposure during the past winter, and this in a well- wood- 
ed country. In some of them two or three toes only, on 
one or both feet, were gangrened, and in process of sep- 




Beujamia T. Daugherty, Co. K, Slst lllinoia (Fig. 2). 

o 



814 SKETCHES OF PRISON LIFE. 

arating by ulceration ; in others, both feet bad entirely 
separated, and the patients were awaiting the time when 
their general strength and the condition of the stump 
would warrant a final amputation. In many cases the 
patients ascribed this gangrene directly to frost-bites re- 
ceived on particular occasions ; in others, to their illness 
from which they were suffering — generally fever com- 
bined with exposure. My own impression, derived from 
the result of niany inquiries, was that it was generally 
due to a continuous depression of the vital energies from 
starvation and neglect, resulting gradually in a destruc- 
tion of the life of those parts most exposed to the cold 
and the weather." 

But the record of cruelty is not confined to the special 
class of cases which we have been considering. It is 
known that our prisoners have been treated with every 
sort of indignity. Letters from home have been with- 
held. Eewards have been offered to the Eebel guard 
for shooting any who should cross a certain limit known 
as the dead line. These rewards were offered with a 
knowledge of the fact that many would thus be killed 
who trespassed thoughtlessly beyond the limits, and many 
more from a desire to end a life so miserable. These re- 
wards were a premium both on murder and suicide. It 
has been proven by reliable testimony that the Libby 
Prison at Richmond was undermined for the purpose of 
blowing it up in case any of our cavalry raids should 
succeed in entering the Rebel capital — thus retaliating 
for a legitimate act of war by an act of useless and wan- 
ton cruelty inflicted upon innocent men. 

These cruelties were not the result of accident, but of 
a deliberate purpose. By this we do not mean that the 



SKETCHES OF PKISON" LIFE. 315 

Southern people were committed to these acts. In many 
cases their humanity compelled them, though in opposi- 
tion to the authorities, to attempt the alleviation of the 
sufferings which they witnessed. When our wasted 
prisoners entered Wilmington, before the capture of that 
city, many of the citizens tried to supply them with food, 
but were kept from doing so by an armed force of Eebel 
soldiers. In a letter written to General Winder by Col- 
onel Ould, March 17th, 1863, the latter says : 

"The arrangements I have made (for exchanging pris- 
oners) works largely in our favor. We get rid of a set 
of miserable wretches, and receive some of the best mate- 
rial I ever saw." 

Henry S. Foote, the Eebel Senator, offered to go before 
a court of justice and testify to the fact that a portion of 
the Eebel Congress once visited Mr. Davis to remon- 
strate against the treatment of Union prisoners, and the 
petition was refused by Mr. Davis and his cabinet on the 
ground of policy merely. We have read in history of 
terrible cruelties inflicted upon the defenseless in revo- 
lutionary times. We understand how it was in the 
streets of Paris, when poor men had cried for bread in 
vain, and at length resorted to violence. There is some 
poor plea, too, for those who, in the excitement of battle, 
cry "No quarter!" and slay their prisoners on the spot. 
But who ever heard before of men who called them- 
selves Christians coolly and on principle starving men to 
death for no other crime than that of fighting for their 
country ? And yet Mr. Mitchel, the new editor of the 
Daily News, tells us that Davis has waged an honorable 
war, according to all ^he high usages of a Christian and 
civilized age. 



816 SKETCHES OF PEISON LIFE. 

The rebellions of which history takes note have had 
various aspects. Kebel leaders have not always been 
instigators of arson and murder. There have been Keb- 
els who have even elicited the respect of honorable 
minds. But Davis and his fellows have chosen for them- 
selves a blacker record. JSTot content to have been the 
cause of the most needless war ever waged, they have af- 
filiated themselves with crimes which are revolting to 
every Christian civilization except that of the chivalrous, 
slaveholding South. 



APPENDIX. 



Xhe following Appendix is not as perfect as I could wish, 
yet as much so as it was possible to make it from the limit- 
ed means at my command. The names were taken from 
the (Rebel) adjutant's book at Columbia. I have furnished 
the post-office address of the officers as far as I could ob- 
tain them. 

Those marked thus * died at Columbia, S. C. 



318 APPENDIX. 






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o;5 o;5o -^ q;:; g o';^ ;:q ;:^ ^ ;3 

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*1 


Donoliey, G. B. 
Diertenbach, W. II. 
De Lay, K. 
Deminick, 0. W. 
Drake, C. H. 
Dypcst, K. S. 
Dick, L. 
Davis, L. B. 
Dillon, F. W. 
Dahl, 0. K. 
Dickey, M. V. 
Davis, Byron 
I^ay, E. 
Daiton, G. A. 
Dickerson, E. 
Durnam, T. J. 
Dunn, IL C. 
Driscoll, D. 
Davis, E. J. 
Dugan, J. 
Dorr, H. G. 


Drake, J. M. 
Dicey, E. C. 
Downing, H. A. 
Dibeler, J. B. 
Davidson, J. W. 
Dennv, W. N. 
Drew; G. H. 


6 

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APPENDIX. 833 



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334 APPENDIX. 



r^ ^ ^ ^ . C3 Ki 

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fi^ ^ pt< fs^ Ph fi< P>H PtH piH fE< Ph Ph P»H Pm Ph ^ Ph fi^ fiH Ph Ph Ph Ph Ph fJH Ph 0000 



336 



APPENDIX. 



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338 






APPENDIX. 






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APPENDIX. 339 



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340 



APPENDIX. 



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OrtOSSOciSortOcSocio c3000<:Jc5c3:;:riOOc30cie3rt 



342 APPENDIX. 



I 'T2 



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w« ^°^^ If I §i |o^5i |?|ltl|^i 

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APPENDIX. 845 



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CO^ i-HCOCOCOcO =^(M<MC0COrH'-((M <-^ »On-iCO'^'''-<WCO(MCO 



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344 APPENDIX. 



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APPENDIX. 345 



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348 APPENDIX. 






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APPENDIX. 349 



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350 APPENDIX. 



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Washington, D. 
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356 APPENDIX. 





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Philadelphia, Pa 
New York City. 
Polo, Ind. 
Greenwich, 0. 
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Somerset, Ky. 
Winona, Minn. 




d 
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Morgantown, W 
Olney, 111. 
Sigourney, Iowa 
Rockford, 111. 
Vermont, 111. 
Muscatine, Iowa. 


Carmi, 111. 
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Bennington, Vt. 
New York City. 




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i 


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Tenn. 




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liinggold, Ga 
Samaria, Va. 
Gettysburg, P 
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1 


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Atlanta, Ga. 


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358 APPENDIX. 



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55 




Pettit, G. 
Preston, A. L. 
Pendleton, D. B. 
Porter, D. M. 
Penny})acker, E. J. 
Patterson, F. A. 
Potter, II. C. 
Paul, J. S. 
Phillipp, F. 
Pierce, S. C. 
Pratsman, C. N. 
Potter, G. A. 
Peters, G. 
Pitt, J. H. 
Post, James 
Page, J. E. 
Pace, N. C. 
Piper, S. B. 
Phelps, J. D. 
Palmer, E. L. 
Poston, J. L. 
Patree, L. B. 
Poole, J. F. 
Peterson, C. J. A. 
Peck, W. D. 
Pelton, E. W. 
Patterson, G. W. 
Price, J. C. 



APPENDIX. 869 



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Quarterly Revieio. 

Mr. Motley is a sturdy Republican and a hearty Protestant His style is live- 
ly and picturesque, and his work is an honor and an important accession to our 
national literature. — Church Revieio. 

Mr. Motley's work is an important one, the result of profound research, sincere 
convictions, sound principles, and manly sentiments; and even those who are 
most familiar with the liistory of the period will find in it a fresh and vivid ad- 
dition to their previous knowledge. It does honor to American literature, and 
-v/ould do honor to the literature of any country in the ^\or\di.—Edinburqh Re- 
view. 

A seriou3 chasm in English historical literature has been (by this book) very 
remarkably filled. * * * A history as complete as industrv and genius can make 
it now lies before us, of the first twenty years of the revolt of the United Prov- 
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His mind is broad, his industry unwearied. In power of dramatic description 
no modem historian, except, perhaps, Mr. Carlyle. surnasscs him, and in analy- 
sis of character he is elaborate and distinct. — Westminster Revieio. 



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It is a work of real historical value, the result of accurate criticism, written 
in a liberal spirit, and from first to last deeply interesting. — Athcnceum. 

The style is excellent, clear, vivid, eloquent ; and the industry with which 
original sources have been investigated, and through which new light has been 
Ghed over perplexed incidents and characters, entitles Mr. Motley to a high rank 
in the literature of an age peculiarly rich in history. — North British Review. 

It abounds in new information, and, as a first work, commands a very cordial 
recognition, not merely of the promise it gives, but of the extent and importance 
of the labor actually performed on it. — London Examiner. 

Mr. Motley's "History" is a work' of which any country might be proud. — 
I^ress (London). 

Mr. Motley's History will be a standard book of reference in historical litera- 
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Mr. Motley has searched the whole range of historical documents necessary to 
the composition of his woTk..— London Leader. 

This is really a great work. It belongs to the class of books in which we 
range our Grotes, Milmans, Merivales, and Macaulays, as the glories of English 
literature in the department of history. * * * Mr. Motley's gifts as a historical 
writer are among the highest and TSLTesL—Nonconforinid (London). 

Mr. Motley's volumes will well repay pp.rusal. * * * For his learning, his liberal 
tone, and his generous enthusiasm, we hevirtily commend him, and bid him good 
speed for the remainer of his interesting and heroic narrative. — Saturday Review. 

The story is a noble one, and is worthily treated. * * • Mr. Motley has had the 
patience to unravel, with unfailing perseverance, the thousand intricate plots of 
the adversaries of the Prince of Orange; but the details and the literal extracts 
which he has derived from original documents, and transferred to his pages, 
give a truthful color and a picturesque effect, which are especially charming. — 
London Daily Xews. 

M. Lothrop Motley dans son magnifique tableau de la formation de notre E6- 
publique.— G. Geoex Van Peinsteeek. 

Our accompli.-rhed countryman, Mr. J. Lothrop Motley, who, during the last 
five years, for the better prosecution of his labors, has established his residence 
ill the neighborhood of the scenes of his narrative. No one acquainted with the 
fine powers of mind possessed by this scholar, and the earnestness with which ho 
has devoted himself to the task, can doubt that he will do full justice to his im- 
portant but difficult subject. — W. H. Peescott. 

The production of such a work as this astonishes, while it gratifies the pride 
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The "Rise of the Dutch Republic" at once, and by acclamation, takes its 
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A work upon which all who read the English language may congratulate 
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Mr. Motley's place is now (alluding to this book) with Hallam and Lord Ma- 
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The authority, in the English tongue, for the history of the period and people 
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This work at once places the author on the list of American historians which 
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The better acquainted any one is with Grecian history, and with the manner in 
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not often approached, in unlearned England ; while those Germans who have ri- 
valed it have seldom possessed the quality which eminently characterizes Mr. 
Grote, of keeping historical imagination severely under the restraints of evidence. 
The great charm of Mr. Grote's history has been throughout the cordial admira- 
tion he feels for the people whose acts and fortunes he has to relate. * * We bid 
Mr. Grote farewell ; heartily congratulating him on the conclusion of a work which 
is a monument of English learning, of English clear-sightedness, and of English 
love of freedom and the characters it produces. — Spectator. 

Endeavor to become acquainted with Mr. Grote, who is engaged on a Greek 
History. I expect a great deal from this production. — Niebuhk, the Historian, 
t» Professor Lieber. 

The author has now incontestably won for himself the title, not merely of a 
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Mr. Grote is, beyond all question, the historian of Greece, unrivaled, so far as 
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For becoming dignity of style, unforced adaptation of results to principles, care- 
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and well-weighed learning, employed with intelligence and taste, we have seen no 
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3Ir. Motley, the Amtrican historian of the United Netherlands— we owe him 
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" As interesting as a romance., and as reliable as aproposition of Euclid.'''' 



History of 
The United Netherlands. 

FEOM THE DEATH OF WILLIAM THE SILENT TO THE SYNOD OF DOET. \n.Ta A 

FULL VIEW OF THE ENGLISH-DUTCH 6TEUGGLE AGAINST SPAIN, AND 

OP THE OKIGLN AND DESTRUCTION OF THE SPANISH 

ARMADA. 

By JOHN LOTHROP MOTLEY, LL.B., D.C.L., 

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• "With Portraits and Map. 

2 vols. 8vo, Muslin, $6 00; Sheep, $7 00; Half Calf, $10 50. 

Critical Notices. 

His living and truthful picture of events.— Quarterly Review (London), Jan., 
1S6L 

Fertile as the present age has been in historical works of the highest merit, 
none of them can be ranked above these volumes in the grand qualities of interest, 
accuracy, and truth. — Edinburgh Quarterly Review, Jan., 1861. 

This noble vrork.— West n,i7ister Review (London). 

One of the most fascinuting as well as important histories of the century Cor. 

N. Y. Evening Post. 

The careful study of these volumes will infallibly afford a feast both rich and 
T&re.— Baltimore Republican. 

Already takes a rank among standard works of history. — London Critic. 

Mr. Motley's prose epic— Lo7idou Spectator. 

Its pages are pregnant with instruction. — London Literary Gazette. 

We may profit by almost every page of his naiTative. All the topics which agi' 
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Bears on every page marks of the same vigorous mind that produced "The Eise 
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■ The name of Motlev now stands in the veiy front rank of li\'ing historians. His 
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Motl°y, indeed, has produced a prose epic, and his fi.r;hting scenes are as real, 
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tan. 50c. 

60. The White Slave. $1. 

Gl. The Bosom Friend. By Mrs. Grey. 
50c. 

62. Amauiy. By Dumas. 50c. 

63. The Author's Daughter. By Mary 
Howitt, 25c. 

64. Only a Fiddler ! &c. By Ander- 
sen. 50c. 

65. The Whiteboy. By Mrs. Hall. 50c. 

66. The Foster-Brother. Edited by 
Leigh Hunt. 50c. 

67. Love and Mesmerism. By H. 
Smith. 75c. 

CS. Ascanio. By Dumas. 75c. 

69. Lady of Milan. Edited by Mrs. 
Thomson. 75c. 

70. The Citizen of Prague. $1. 

71. The Royal Favorite. By Mrs. 
Gore. 50c. 

72. The Queen of Denmark. By Mrs. 
Gore. 50c. 

7.3. The Elves, &c. By Tieck, 50a 
74, 75. The Step-Mother. By James. 
$1 25. 

76. Jessie's Flirtations. 25c. 

77. Chevalier d'Harmental. By Du- 
mas. 50c. 

78. Peers and Parvenus, By Mrs. 
Gore. 50c. 

79. The Commander of Malta. By 
Sue. 50c. 

80. The Female Minister, 50c, 

81. Emilia Wyndham, By Mrs, Marsh. 
75c, 

82. The Bush -Ranger. By Charles 
Rowcroft. 50c. 

83. The Chronicles of Clovernook, 25c, 

84. Genevieve. By Lamartine. 25c. 

85. Livonian Tales, 25c, 

86. Lettice Arnold. By Mrs. Maish. 
25c. 

87. Father Darcy. By Mrs, JIarsh. 
75c. 

SS. Leontine. By Mrs. Maberlv. 50c, 

89. Heidelberg, ByJame.*, 50c. 

90. Lucretia. By Bulwer. 75c. 

91. Beauchamp. By James. 75c. 

92. 94. Forte.«cue. By Kiinwles. $1. 

93. Daniel Denison, &c. By Mrs, Iiof- 
land. 50c, 



HAEPER'S LIBRARY OF SELECT NOVELS. 



95. Cinq-Mars. By De Vigny. 50c. 

96. "Woman's Tiials. By Mrs. S. C. 
HaU. 75c. 

97. The Castle of Ehrenstein. By 
James. 50c. 

08. Marriage. By Miss S. Ferrier. 50c. 
9». Roland Cashel. By Lever. $1 25. 

100. Martins of Cro' Martin. By Le- 
ver. $1 25, 

101. Russell. By James. 50c. 

102. A Simple Story. By Mrs. Inch- 
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103. Norman's Bridge. By Mrs. Marsh. 
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104. Alamance. 50c. 

105. Margaret Graham. By James. 25c. 

106. The Wayside Cross. By E. II. 
Milman. 25c. 

107. The Convict. By James. 50c. 
lOS. Midsummer Eve. By Mrs. S. C. 

Hall. 50c. 

1G9. Jane Eyre. By Currer Bell. T5c. 

110. The Last of the Fairies. By 
James. 2.5c. 

111. Sir Theodore Broughton. By 
James. .50c. 

112. Self-Control. By Mary Bninton. 
75c. 

113. 114. Harold. By Bulwer. $1. 

115. Brothers and Sisters. By Miss 
Bremer. 50c. 

116. Gowrie. By James. 50c. 

117. A Whim and its Consequences. 
By James. 50c. 

118. Three Sisters and Three Fortunes. 
By G. II. Lewes. 75e. 

119. The Discipline of Life. 50c. 

120. Thirty Years Since. By James. 
75c. 

121. Mary Barton. By Mrs, Gaskell. 
50c. 

122. The Great Iloggarty Diamond. 
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123. The Forgeiy. By James. 50c. 

124. The Midnight Sun. By Miss 
Bremer. 25c. 

125. 126. The Caxtons. By Bulwer. 
75c. 

127. Mordaunt Hall. By Mi's. Marsh. 
50c. 

128. My Uncle the Curate. 50c. 
12^. The Woodman. By James. 75c. 

130. The Green Hand. A '^ Short 
Yarn." 75c. 

131. Sidonia the Sorceress. By Mein- 
hold. $1. 

132. Sliirley. By Currer Bell. $1. 

133. The Ogilvies. 50c. 

1 34. Constance Lyndsay. By G. C. H. 
50c. 

135. Sir Edward Graham. By Miss 
Sinclair. $1. 

136. Hands not Hearts. By Miss Wil- 
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137. Tlie Wilmingtons, By Mrs. 
Marsh. 50c. 

138. Ned Allen. ByD. Hannay. .50c. 

139. Night and Morning. By Bulwer. 
75c. 

140. The Maid of Orleans. 75c. 



141. Antonina. By Wilkie Coll us, 
50c. 

142. Zanoni. By Bulwer. 50c. 

143. Reginald Hastings. ByWarbur- 
ton. 50c. 

144. Pride and Irresolution. 50c. 

145. The Old Oak Chest. By Jame?. 
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146. Julia Howard. By airs. Martin 
BeU. 50c. 

147. Adelaide Lindsay. Edited by 
Mrs. Marsh. 50c. 

148. Petticoat Government. By Mrs. 
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149. The Luttrells. By F. Williams. 
50c. 

150. Singleton Fontenoy, R.N. By 
Hannay. 50c. 

151. Olive. By the Author of "Tho 
Ogilvies." 50c. 

152. Henry Smeaton, By James, 50c. 

153. Time, the Avenger. By Mrs. 
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154. The Commissioner. By James. $1. 

155. The Wife's Sister, By Mrs. Hub- 
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156. Tlie Gold Worshipers, 50c. 

157. The Daughter of Night. By Ful- 
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158. Stuart of Dnnleath, By Hon. 
Caroline Norton. 50c. 

159. Arthur Conway. By Captain E. 
H. Milman. 50c. 

160. The Fate. By James. 50c. 

161. The Lady and the Priest. By 
Mrs. Maberly. 50c. 

162. Aims and Obstacles. By James. 
50c. 

163. The Tutor's Ward. 50c. 

164. Florence Sackville. By Mrs. Bur- 
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165. Ravenscliflfe. By Mrs. Marsh. 
50c. 

166. Mauiice TieiTiay. By Lever. $1. 

167. The Head of the Family. By 
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168. Darien. By Warburton. 50c. 
109. Falkenburg. 75c. 

170. The Dal tons. By Lever. $1 50. 

171. Ivar; or. The Skjuts-Boy. By 
Miss Carlen. 50c. 

172. Pequinillo. By James. 50c. 

173. Anna Hammer. By Temme. 5flc. 

174. A Life of Vicissitudes. By James. 
50c, 

17.5. Henry Esmond. By Thackeray, 
75c, 

176, 177. My Novel. By Bulwer. 
$1 50, 

178. Katie Stewart. 50c. 

179. Castle Avon. By Mrs. Marsh. 
50c. 

180. Agnes Sorel. By James. 50c. 

181. Agatha's Husband. By the Au- 
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182. Villette. By Currer Bell. 7.5c. 

183. Lover's Stratagem. By Miss Car- 
len. 50c. 

184. Clouded Happiness. By Count- 
ess D'Orsay. 50c. 



HARPER'S LIBRARY OF SELECT NOVELS. 



3 



185. Charles Auchester. A Memorial. 
75c. 

1S6. Lady Lee's Widowhood. 50c. 

18T. Dodd Family Abroad. By Lever. 
$125. 

ISS. Sir Jasper Carew. By Lever. 
75c. 

189. Qniel Heart, 25c. 

190. Aubrey. By Uvs. Marsh. 75c. 

191. Ticonderoga. By James. 50c. 

192. Hard Times. By Dickens. 50c. 

193. The YouDg Husband. By Mr.-j. 
Grey. 5Uc. 

194. The Mother's Recompense. By 
Grace Aguilar. T5c. 

195. Avillion, and other Tales. By 
the Author of '•'■ Olive," &c. $1 25. 

196. North and South. By Mrs. Gas- 
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197. Country Neighborhood. By Miss 
Dupuy. 50c. 

198. Constance Herbert. By Miss 
Jewsbury. 50c. 

199. The Heiress of Haughton. By 
Mrs. Marsh. 50c. 

200. The Old Dominion. By James. 
50c. 

201. John Halifax. By the Author 
of "Olive," &c. 75c. 

202. Evelyn Marston. By Mrs. Marsh. 
50c. 

203. Fortunes of Glencore. By Lever. 
50c. 

204. Leonora d' Oreo. By James. 50c. 

205. NotMng New. By Miss Mulock. 
50c. 

206. The Rose of Ashurst. By Mrs. 
Marsh. 50c. 

207. The Athelings. By Mrs. Oli- 
ohant. 75c. 

208. Scenes of Clerical Life. 75c. 

209. My Lady Ludlow. By Mrs. Gas- 
kcU. 25c. 

210. 211. Gerald Fitzgerald. By Le- 
ver. 50c. 

212. A Life for a Life. P.y Miss Mu- 
lock. 50c. 

213. Sword and Gown. By the A«- 
thor of " Guy Living.-tone." 25c. 

214. Misrepresentation. By Anna H. 
Drury. $1. 

215. The Mill on the Flo?=s. By the 
Aathor of " Adam Bede." 75c. 

216. One of Them. By Lever, 75c, 



217. A Day's Ride. By Lever. 50a 

218. Notice to Quit. By Wills. 50c. 

219. A Strange Story. $1. 

220. The Struggles of Brown, Jone.", 
and Robinson, l-v TroUope. 50c. 

22L Abel Drake's Wife. By John 
Saimders, 75c. 

222. Olive Blake's Good Work. By 
John Cordy Jeaflfreson. 75c. 

2'23. The Professor's Lady. 25a 

224. Mistress and Maid. A House- 
hold Story. By Miss Mnlock. 50c. 

225. Aurora Floyd. By M. E. Brad- 
don. 75c. 

22G. Barrington. By Lever. 75c. 

227. Sylvia's Lovers. By Mi-s. Gas. 
kell. 75c. 

228. A First Friend.ship. 50c. 

229. A Dark Night' s Work. By Mrs. 
Gaskell. 50c. 

230. Mrs. Lirriper's Lodgings. 25c. 

231. St. Olave's. 75c. 

232. A Point of Honor, ,50c, 

233. Live it Down. By Joafifreson, $1. 

234. Martin Pole, By Saunders. 50c, 

235. Mary Lyndsay. By Lady I'on- 
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23(;. Eleanor's Victory. By M. E. 
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237. Rachel Ray. By Ti-oUope, 50c, 

238. John Marchmont's Legacy. By 
M. E. Braddon. 75c, 

239. Annis Warleigh's Fortunes. By 
Holme Lee, 75c. 

240. The Wife's Evidence. By Wills 
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241. Barbara's Histoiy, By Amelia 
B, Edwards, 75c, 

242. Cousin Phillis, 25c, 

243. What wiU he do with It ? By 
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244. The Ladder of Life, By Amelia 
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245. Denis Duval. By Thackeray. 50c, 

246. Maurice Dering, By the Author 
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247; Margaret Deuzil's History. An- 
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248. Quite Alone. By George Augus- 
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249. Mattie : a Stray. 75c, 

250. My Brother's Wife. By Amelia 
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251. Uncle Silas. By Le Fanu. 75c, 



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Civil War Institute 

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania