Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Tyler in Smith County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Camp Ford - Prisoners from Louisiana

 
 
Prisoners from Louisianna Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, September 17, 2012
1. Prisoners from Louisianna Marker
Inscription.   In June 1863, CS General Richard Taylor commenced a campaign in South Louisiana that resulted in the capture of a number of Union troops in the Morgan City area. The enlisted men were paroled, but the officers were detained and sent to Shreveport. In late July, these men including three white officers of black regiments, were sent to Tyler. Initially held in the federal Courthouse in town, they were moved in August to Camp Ford. There was no stockade, and the officers were allowed to range several miles from the Camp on their promise not to escape.
   No communications survive that set forth the exact reasons for Taylor selecting Tyler as a depot for POW's. It is probable that Taylor contemplated using the Sabine River as a legalism to avoid the "no distinction as to Corps" requirement.By housing his prisoners in Texas, he could selectively pull prisoners from Tyler to Shreveport and truthfully state that if there were any white officers of black troops, that they were in Texas and not subject to his control. In late September, Taylor bagged an entire brigade of Federals at Bayou Fordoche. The 650 prisoners were marched to Tyler, marking the beginning of the facility as a full scale prison camp.

Fear And Treason

   The arrival of the Fordoche prisoners on October 30, 1863 created a panic in Tyler.
Lithograph of Camp Ford as it appeared in spring of 1865 image. Click for full size.
Prisoners from Louisiana Marker, `
2. Lithograph of Camp Ford as it appeared in spring of 1865
Made from drawings from Corp. James McClain of the 120th Ohio
There were fewer than 40 guards, and no stockade. A plot was discovered involving local unionists George and John Whitmore and George Rosenbaum. The conspirators were arrested, and the CS authorities called for the planters of Smith County to bring their slaves to Tyler to erect a stockade. In 10 days the wall was completed,enclosing an area of about 3.5 acres with logs 16 feet tall. A prisoner diarist noted that "the people of Tyler were relieved of their fears."
   At about the same time, negotiations were in full swing for a prisoner exchange. Camp Groce was ordered to be closed and prisoners moved to Tyler, with the officers to be detained here, and the enlisted men to be sent on to Shreveport. The Camp Groce prisoners arrived on December 24, 1863, and all of the enlisted men marched on to Shreveport the next day. The exchange did not take place, and these men remained at Shreveport for the winter.
 
Erected by Smith County Historical Society.
 
Location. 32° 23.779′ N, 95° 16.102′ W. Marker is in Tyler, Texas, in Smith County. Marker is on U.S. 271 near Loop State Highway 323, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Tyler TX 75702, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this
Prisoners from Louisiana Marker, center image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, September 17, 2012
3. Prisoners from Louisiana Marker, center
marker. Camp Ford - Naval Prisoners (here, next to this marker); Camp Ford - Early Days as a Prison Camp (here, next to this marker); African Americans at Camp Ford (here, next to this marker); Camp Ford Confederate Guards (here, next to this marker); Camp Ford - Establishment of the Camp (here, next to this marker); Cabin of Lt. Col. J.B. Leake (within shouting distance of this marker); Camp Ford (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); a different marker also named Camp Ford (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Tyler.
 
Also see . . .  Richard Taylor (general), from Wikipedia. (Son of US President, Zachary Taylor, was a brother-in-law of Jefferson Davis) During 1863, Taylor directed an effective series of clashes with Union forces over control of lower Louisiana, most notably at Battle of Fort Bisland and the Battle of Irish Bend. These clashes were fought against Union Maj. Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks for control of the Bayou Teche region in southern Louisiana and his ultimate objective of Siege of Port Hudson. After Banks had successfully pushed Taylor's Army of Western Louisiana aside, he continued on his way to Port Hudson via Alexandria, Louisiana. After these battles, Taylor formulated a plan to recapture Bayou Teche, along with the city of New Orleans, Louisiana, and to halt the Siege of Port Hudson.... (Submitted on October 9, 2012, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina.)
Gen. Richard Taylor image. Click for full size.
Library of Congress Between 1860-70
4. Gen. Richard Taylor
 
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
Camp Ford - Battles where prisoners were captured image. Click for full size.
Smith County Historical Society,, `
5. Camp Ford - Battles where prisoners were captured
` The Camp drew from vast area in hundreds of engagements. This map shows the largest and most distant battles that resulted in prisoners
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 9, 2012, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 293 times since then and 41 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on October 9, 2012, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina.   5. submitted on October 28, 2012, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina.
Paid Advertisement