Salisbury in Rowan County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
C.S. Military Prison
Longing for the Morning
Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, to further strain Southern resources, slowed the exchange of prisoners in 1864, and beginning in August stopped the exchanges entirely until February 1865. In October 1864, the prison began receiving large numbers of Union soldiers captured on the Virginia battlefields. By early November, the prison, designed to hold about 2,500, became inundated with about 10,000 men. The overcrowded inmates occupied tents and partial underground shelters throughout the fall and winter of 1864-65 because most of the buildings had to be used as hospitals.
The main entrance to the prison compound stood 40 yards across the bridge to your right, enclosed by a wooden stockade and a “dead line” that inmates could be shot for crossing. The log garrison house in front of you is the only surviving structure used by the prison.
“There we sat, night after night, in the thick darkness, inhaling the foul vapor and acrid smoke, longing for the morning when we could again catch a glimpse of the blue beaming sky.”
- Four Years in Secessia, Junius Henry Browne
Erected by Civil War Trails.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the North Carolina Civil War Trails series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1861.
Location. 35° 39.839′ N, 80° 28.206′ W. Marker is in Salisbury, North Carolina, in Rowan County. Marker is on E Bank Street, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Salisbury NC 28144, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. City of Salisbury (approx. 0.2 miles away); Meroney’s Theatre (approx. 0.2 miles away); Andrew Jackson (approx. 0.2 miles away); Confederate Prison (approx. 0.2 miles away); Salisbury Fire Dept. (approx. 0.2 miles away); John Willis Ellis (approx. 0.2 miles away); William Valentine (approx. ¼ mile away); Crossroads: Past Into Present (approx. ¼ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Salisbury.
More about this marker. The bottom left of the marker contains a lithograph of a birds-eye view of the prison, by C.A. Kraus in 1886. The upper right of the marker shows an “Aerial photo with outline of prison boundaries.”
Credits. This page was last revised on May 26, 2021. It was originally submitted on August 8, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,746 times since then and 49 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on August 8, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. 6. submitted on December 9, 2020, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.