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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Brattleboro in Windham County, Vermont — The American Northeast (New England)
 

Prospect Hill Soldier's Lot

 
 
Prospect Hill Soldier's Lot Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, July 8, 2019
1. Prospect Hill Soldier's Lot Marker
Inscription.  
Brattleboro at War (center panel)
In May 1861, a month after the Confederate assault on Fort Sumter in South Carolina, the State of Vermont established a camp in the town of Brattleboro. The barracks and other buildings were used to house recruits and train volunteer Union soldiers. In September, the 4th Vermont Infantry mustered into service and departed for Washington, D.C. They were the first of more than 10,000 troops to pass through the camp. Ten infantry regiments and one artillery battery were organized here.

Gov. Frederick Holbrook, for whom the camp was later named, prevailed upon the War Department to establish a military hospital in Vermont. He believed fresh cool Vermont air would aid the recovery of men unaccustomed to southern heat. In January 1863, several buildings were converted into a U.S. General Hospital. It could originally accommodate up to 2,000 patients. By 1864, new construction doubled that number. Brattleboro was home to the largest of three military hospitals operating in Vermont during the Civil War.

Civil War Dead (left panel)
An estimated 700,000 Union and
Marker detail: Mourners at Alexandria National Cemetery, Virginia, c. 1865 image. Click for full size.
Miller, Photographic History of the Civil War (1910)
2. Marker detail: Mourners at Alexandria National Cemetery, Virginia, c. 1865
After 1873, standard marble headstones replaced the wood headboards seen here.
Confederate soldiers died in the Civil War (1861-1865). As the death toll rose, the U.S. government struggled with the urgent but unplanned need to bury fallen Union troops. This propelled the creation of a national cemetery system.

On September 11, 1861, the War Department directed officers to keep "accurate and permanent records of deceased soldiers." Federal authority to create military burial grounds came in an Omnibus Act of July 17, 1862. Cemetery sites were chosen where troops were concentrated: camps, hospitals, battlefields, railroad hubs. By 1872, 74 national cemeteries and several soldiers' lots contained 305,492 remains. About 45 percent were unknown.

The U.S. government established soldiers' lots at private cemeteries in northern states. National cemeteries, in contrast, were built throughout the South where most Civil War action occurred. While the army reported dozens of lots containing Union dead in the 1870s, the National Cemetery Administration maintains only fifteen. The number of graves ranges from less than ten to nearly 400 in these lots.

Military Burials (right panel)
The bodies of most Vermont soldiers who died at the U.S. General Hospital were transported home for burial. Nineteen Union soldiers were interred on the hospital grounds, only one was unknown.

In 1866, the army moved these remains from the
Marker detail: U.S. General Hospital, Brattleboro, c.1864 image. Click for full size.
3. Marker detail: U.S. General Hospital, Brattleboro, c.1864
Top: Undated photograph of U.S. General Hospital. (Special Collections of the Brooks Memorial Library, Brattleboro)
Right: Union soldiers outside of a supply but at the hospital, 1864. (Courtesy of Thomas St. John)
hospital cemetery to Brattleboro's Prospect Hill Cemetery. Three years later the town sold the small, rectangular soldiers' lot to the U.S. government for $100.

Civil War veterans decorated the soldiers' graves with flowers as part of the first Decoration (Memorial) Day observance in 1868. The ceremony featured music, speeches, and a cannon salute. By 1874, the lot was enclosed with a hedge and trees were planted at the corners. The nineteen graves were marked with permanent marble headstones. A flagstaff was installed in the 1890s.
 
Erected by U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, National Cemetery Administration.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the National Cemeteries marker series.
 
Location. 42° 50.707′ N, 72° 33.352′ W. Marker is in Brattleboro, Vermont, in Windham County. Marker can be reached from South Main Street south of Washington Street, on the left when traveling south. Marker and Soldier's Lot are located at the south end of Brattleboro's Prospect Hill Cemetery. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 94 South Main Street, Brattleboro VT 05301, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 4 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Estey Organ Company (approx. 0.4 miles away); Centre Congregational Church (approx. 0.6 miles away); The First Building of the Centre Congregational Church
Marker detail: Prospect Hill Soldier's Lot in 1954 image. Click for full size.
4. Marker detail: Prospect Hill Soldier's Lot in 1954
Top: Photograph of soldiers' lot in 1954. (National Cemetery Administration)
Lower left: Article published in the Vermont Phoenix (Brattleboro), June 15, 1866. (Library of Congress)
Right: Plan of soldiers' lot with the names of the dead, November 1905. (National Archives and Records Administration)
(approx. 0.9 miles away); Brattleboro Veterans Monument (approx. 0.9 miles away); Brattleboro Civil War Monument (approx. 0.9 miles away); Vermont’s Interstate Highway System (approx. 2.3 miles away); Naulahka (approx. 2˝ miles away); Fort Bridgman Marker (approx. 4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Brattleboro.
 
Also see . . .  Prospect Hill Cemetery Soldiers' Lot, Vermont. Soldiers who died in the Brattleboro hospital were originally buried in the barracks cemetery. In 1869, the federal government purchased a 50-foot by-30 foot lot in Prospect Hill Cemetery, and subsequently reburied the interments from the barracks cemetery there. (Submitted on July 9, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. Cemeteries & Burial SitesPatriots & PatriotismWar, US Civil
 
Prospect Hill Soldier's Lot Marker<br>(<i>wide view • Soldier's Lot in background</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, July 8, 2019
5. Prospect Hill Soldier's Lot Marker
(wide view • Soldier's Lot in background)
Prospect Hill Soldier's Lot Headstones (<i>views from northeast and northwest</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, July 8, 2019
6. Prospect Hill Soldier's Lot Headstones (views from northeast and northwest)
 

More. Search the internet for Prospect Hill Soldier's Lot.
 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 10, 2019. This page originally submitted on July 9, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 56 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on July 9, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.
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