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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Richmond, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Libby Prison CSA

1861-65

 
 
Libby Prison CSA Marker image. Click for full size.
By Paul Jordan, April 29, 2010
1. Libby Prison CSA Marker
Inscription.  
On this site stood
Libby Prison C.S.A.
1861-65

for Federal Prisoners of War

Placed by
Confederate Memorial Literary Society
A.D. 1911

 
Erected 1911 by Confederate Memorial Literary Society.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Forts and CastlesWar, US Civil. A significant historical year for this entry is 1911.
 
Location. 37° 31.848′ N, 77° 25.605′ W. Marker is in Richmond, Virginia. Marker is at the intersection of East Cary Street and South 20th Street, on the right when traveling east on East Cary Street. Marker is to the left of the gate in the James River flood wall that leads to extra parking for the Virginia Holocaust Museum and the outer wall of the flood wall. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2000 East Cary Street, Richmond VA 23223, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Libby Prison (here, next to this marker); a different marker also named Libby Prison (within shouting distance of this marker); Early Quakers in Richmond (about 400 feet away,
The Libby Prison Marker was Re-erected in 1980 image. Click for full size.
By Paul Jordan, April 29, 2010
2. The Libby Prison Marker was Re-erected in 1980
The Text of the Marker Reads: Re-erected 1980 by Sons of Confederate Veterans and the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War
Click or scan to see
this page online
measured in a direct line); The Oldest House (about 500 feet away); City of Richmond Bicentennial (about 700 feet away); To Honor (about 800 feet away); Chesapeake & Ohio Railway (approx. 0.2 miles away); Franklin Street Burying Grounds (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Richmond.
 
Regarding Libby Prison CSA. Libby Prison was a Confederate Prison for captured Union officers. The prison opened in 1861, in a three-story brick tobacco warehouse, alongside the James River in Richmond, Virginia.

Conditions were deplorable. Overcrowding and lack of sanitation caused the death of many prisoners between 1863 and 1864. Libby prison is considered the second worst prison operated during the Civil War, second only to Andersonville Prison in Georgia.

Prison Escape. There was one noteworthy escape from Libby Prison. February 9, 1864, 109 men escaped by way of a tunnel. 59 succeeded in reaching the Union lines and freedom. 48 were recaptured. Two drowned in the James River. The escape was one of the most famous prison breaks during the Civil War.

In 1880, the building was purchased by Southern
The James River Flood Wall image. Click for full size.
By Paul Jordan, April 29, 2010
3. The James River Flood Wall
View from the River Side. After you walk through these large doors, the marker is to the right.
Fertilizer Company. In 1889, the building was sold again, this time to a candymaker named Charles F. Gunther, who moved it - piece by piece to Chicago, Illinois. The prison was rebuilt and opened as a war museum, but the business venture proved unprofitable and the building was again dismantled and the pieces were sold as souvenirs.
 
Also see . . .  Libby Prison. A page from the Encyclopedia Virginia. (Submitted on May 1, 2010, by Paul Jordan of Burlington, N. C., U. S. A..) 
 
Additional keywords. James River Wall, Confederacy, Prisoners of War,
 
Old Libby Prison, Richmond, Va. image. Click for full size.
By Hugh C. Leighton Co., Manufacturers, Portland, ME., circa 1908
4. Old Libby Prison, Richmond, Va.
VCU Libraries Digital Collections - Rarely Seen Richmond
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 30, 2020. It was originally submitted on May 1, 2010, by Paul Jordan of Burlington, N. C., U. S. A.. This page has been viewed 2,593 times since then and 71 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on May 1, 2010, by Paul Jordan of Burlington, N. C., U. S. A..   4. submitted on May 10, 2012, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.

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Sep. 22, 2021