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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Salisbury in Rowan County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

C.S. Military Prison

Longing for the Morning

 
 
C.S. Military Prison Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, August 2, 2010
1. C.S. Military Prison Marker
Inscription. On November 2, 1861, the Confederate government purchased about 16 acres here for a prison. The tract included an abandoned three-story cotton mill, a boiler house, six tenements, a superintendentís house, and several smaller buildings. A stockade was erected around the buildings and the first 120 prisoners of war arrived on December 9. By July 1862, most of the Union prisoners of war had been exchanged, leaving only a small contingent of Confederate and Union deserters, political prisoners, and convicts. The facility received no additional military prisoners until October 1864.

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. In February 1865, after about 3,500 prisoners had died from exposure, disease, and other causes, those remaining were transferred to Wilmington, N.C., and Richmond for exchange. In mid-April,
Salisbury Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, August 2, 2010
2. Salisbury Marker
Union Gen. George Stonemanís cavalry entered Salisbury and destroyed the prison.

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.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the North Carolina Civil War Trails marker series.
 
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.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. City of Salisbury (approx. 0.2 miles away); Meroneyís Theatre (approx. 0.2 miles away); Andrew Jackson (approx. 0.2 miles away); Confederate Prison
C.S. Military Prison Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, August 2, 2010
3. C.S. Military Prison Marker
The garrison house used by the prison can be seen in this photo beyond the marker. It is the only prison structure still standing.
(approx. 0.2 miles away); Salisbury Confederate Memorial (approx. 0.3 miles away); St. Lukeís Episcopal Church (approx. 0.3 miles away); Washington Southern Tour (approx. 0.3 miles away); Rowan County Courthouse (approx. 0.3 miles 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.”
 
Also see . . .
1. The Salisbury NC Confederate Civil War Prison & Salisbury National Cemetery. (Submitted on August 11, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
2. Western North Carolina Civil War Sites. North Carolina Civil War Trails (Submitted on August 11, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.) 
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
C.S. Military Prison Entrance Site image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, August 2, 2010
4. C.S. Military Prison Entrance Site
As stated on the marker, the entrance to the prison compound was located just across the bridge seen near the marker.
Salisbury National Cemetery image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, August 2, 2010
5. Salisbury National Cemetery
The cemetery occupies the former site of the Salisbury Prison Camp. Many of the prisoners who died at the prison are buried here.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on August 8, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,330 times since then and 76 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on August 8, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.
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