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Frederick in Frederick County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

United States Army General Hospital #1

Civil War Period

 
 
United States Army General Hospital #1 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 9, 2017
1. United States Army General Hospital #1 Marker
Inscription. This site marks important advances in the history of military medicine. Here Army doctors, nurses, and Daughters of Charity shaped its practice in modern form. Caregivers treated at this 18 acre complex over 30,000 sick and wounded soldiers, Union and Confederate alike.

General Nathaniel Banks opened the first hospital here for three weeks in August 1861. The site offered advantages of central location, good roads, public utilities, plus railway access to Baltimore and Washington.

Afterward the 3rd Wisconsin Infantry maintained an infirmary until it became Army General Hospital No. 1 in June 1862. The facility included two stone barracks from the Revolution, several frame structures, and eleven wards to better accommodate patients. Schoolgirl Florence Doub recalled seeing gate guards, board fencing and “large white tents, put up in streets … marked A, B, C…”

On September 6, General Robert E. Lee captured the Hospital and staff, adding nearly 500 wounded Confederates to the 150 Union soldiers to sick to evacuate. General George B. McClellan reoccupied Frederick a week later. Ensuing clashes at South Mountain and Antietam soon sent thousands of wounded to Frederick. When the Hospital swelled beyond capacity, schools, churches, and even private residences rescued the overflow as the town became
United States Army General Hospital #1 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 9, 2017
2. United States Army General Hospital #1 Marker
The Barracks are currently (May 2017) undergoing renovation.
“one vast hospital.”

Army General Hospital No. 1 continued to serve the Blue and Gray for the duration of the war, tending wounded from the Battles of Gettysburg (July 1863) and Monocacy Junction (July 1864), each conflict sending more wounded than the previous. Finally, with peace restored, the Hospital closed in September 1865 with a government auction of all supplies.

Between 1862 and 1865, lifesavers at this Barracks pioneered innovations of transport, triage, and treatment which continue today as standard practice in the United States military.

1777 — As the American Revolution unfolded, the Maryland General Assembly authorized construction of the Barracks.

1782 - 1783 — German prisoners of war captured by the Americans were quartered here at what later became known as the “Hessian Barracks.”

1802 — Lewis and Clark used the barracks as a depot for supplies gathered to outfit their Corps of Discovery expedition to the American West.

1812 - 1815 — By April 1812 United States troops were quartered here, among them the 6th U.S. Infantry, as well as militia from Maryland and Virginia.

1850s — The Agricultural Society of Frederick County held their annual exposition here. This evolved into what is now the Great Frederick Fair.

1861 -

Innovation image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 9, 2017
3. Innovation
Weight and pulley device developed as this hospital site in 1862 to aid in the recovery from amputations.
Close-up of NMHM photo on marker
1865 — Doctors nurses and volunteers cared for soldiers wounded at South Mountain, Antietam, Gettysburg, Monocacy, and other Civil War battles.

1868 — The Maryland School for the Deaf occupied the barracks and surrounding property. To make way for the school's Main Building, the west wing of the barracks were dismantled.
 
Location. 39° 24.533′ N, 77° 24.581′ W. Marker is in Frederick, Maryland, in Frederick County. Marker can be reached from Clarke Place. Touch for map. At the Maryland School for the Deaf. Marker is at or near this postal address: 101 Clarke Place, Frederick MD 21705, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Frederick Town Barracks (here, next to this marker); Historic Frederick Barracks (here, next to this marker); “The Great Baby Waker” (a few steps from this marker); Hessian Barracks - Witness to History (a few steps from this marker); These Barracks (a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named Frederick Town Barracks (within shouting distance of this marker); Gen. Bradley T. Johnson (approx. 0.2 miles away); Old Freight Depot (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Frederick.
 
Regarding United States Army General Hospital #1.
Hospital Flag image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 9, 2017
4. Hospital Flag
This flag, adopted by the Union in 1864 was used to designate a centrally located medical facility.
Close-up of photo on marker
“Coming from my music lesson one morning when I was about ten years old, I met my cousin, Fannie, several years older than myself. She was a strong Southerner, or Rebel, as we called them. She informed me she had Just heard that the wounded and sick Confederate soldiers in the Barracks Hospital (on the present School for the Deaf campus) did not get enough to eat; they were almost starved. We concluded that we would take them some food. Fannie had a little money and I had a few pennies, So we put them together and went to a bakery. We bought two loaves of bread. The baker lady cut them into slices for us and put them in a basket and covered it with a white paper. Then we hastened to the Barracks Hospital. At the gate stood a soldier with a gun. He told us to halt. We said ‘We have provisions for the sick soldiers.’ So he let us in the gate. The gate had a hood over it to keep the soldiers dry when in rained. The grounds were covered with large white tents put up in the streets. The streets were marked A,B,C,… We inquired for the Confederate tents and went into several of them, offering our bread to the sick and wounded men who were on cots or beds all in rows. Some of them took the bread because we were only children, not because they were hungry. When our provisions (as we called them) were gone, we went home very proud of having visited the soldiers.
— Florence
United States Army General Hospital #1 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 9, 2017
5. United States Army General Hospital #1
Close-up of image on marker
‘Floy’ Doub (1851-1932) quoted in the Maryland Bulletin, Vol CXII, No. 2 November 1991. Florence Doub was the founder of the Frederick Art Club and teacher at the School for the Deaf.
 
Categories. Science & MedicineWar, US Civil
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on May 16, 2017. This page originally submitted on May 12, 2017, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page has been viewed 89 times since then. Last updated on May 14, 2017, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on May 12, 2017, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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