Andersonville Essay Research Paper Andersonville Torture screams

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Andersonville Essay, Research Paper Andersonville Torture, screams, no food: These are the conditions of prisons during the Civil War. The lack of attention to prisoners led to many gruesome things such as eating live animals. The two most infamous prisons were Andersonville in the South and Elmira in the North. Both had terrible conditions that were largely caused by the psychology of the War: If the other side doesn?t have men they can?t fight and likewise with weak men. Both prisons were alike in that men died, but each is infamous in their own way of how the men died. Since the Confederacy was collapsing, the South had little food and medical supplies. It was suffering greatly and to stop this an exchange system for prisoners of equal rank went on for one and a half

years. Also, men were paroled and released after signing a paper stating that would not bear arms until officially exchanged. Later the exchange system was stopped because the North realized that it was benefiting the Confederacy. After all, the North could afford to lose men as prisoners but the South couldn?t afford to replace troops. The Union then could stop the South?s ability to carry on the War. As a result of this, the number and size of prisons increased. Crowding, inadequate provisions, and poor sanitation was then a consequence of the greater number of prisoners which caused 49,000 men out of 346,000 prisoners during the War to die. A public outcry over prison conditions made Abraham Lincoln send Professor Francis Lieber of Columbia to set rules for the treatment of

prisoners during war. His set of rules were called the Lieber Code. Both prisons violated this code and that is what I am going to show through this report. Andersonville is probably the most well known of the prison camps. It was a Confederate camp in Georgia from 1864 on. Its main problem was the massive overcrowding. It was built for 10,000 but at one time held 33,000 men. It was built of a roughly hewn pine log stockade. It was only 16 and a half acres. Andersonville was also known as Camp Sumter in the South. The structure of Andersonville was very unique. It had guards in sentry boxes called pigeon roosts at 30 yard intervals along the top of the 15 foot high stockade wall. 19 feet from the wall was the infamous deadline which prisoners were forbidden to cross upon the

threat of death. Another infamous idea of Andersonville were the Raiders, a gang of prisoners who stole men?s supplies by beating and killing them. They were later hanged for killing six men. In 1864, Andersonville was the fifth largest city in the Confederacy because of it?s 32,000 men as prisoners. When prisoners were put in Andersonville their first concern was a living space, which they made from whatever they could scrounge. They were each allotted a space of 4 feet by 6 feet. The Confederacy was struggling to provide food, clothing, and medical supplies for its own men let alone prisoners of the Union. As a result, men were often neglected unless they had money in which case they could buy staples, coffee, fruits, and vegetables from the camp?s sutler. However, most men

came in with little or no money so only occasionally got fed. They were given the typical ration which was a double handful of unbolted cornmeal with the cob still on. The lack of nutrition and food caused an epidemic of scurvy except in the rare case that the prison quartermaster issued rice, molasses, and beans along with foul-smelling meat. Most rations were uncooked, so this created another problem. Prisoners had to scrounge for fire wood and skillets which is why the prisoners began to steal and join the Raiders. Another problem of the prison was that their only water supply was also their only means of sewage disposal. It was a simple stream known as Stockyard Creek which flowed through the prison yard . It was too small to serve both purposes for so many men that it became