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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Scotland in St. Mary's County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

“Contraband” Camp

 
 
"Contraband" Camp Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, March 11, 2012
1. "Contraband" Camp Marker
Inscription. During the Civil War, thousands of enslaved African-Americans escaped from captivity in the South to liberty in the North. The grounds before once sheltered these freedom-seekers, know at that time as “Contraband”.

Conditions in the “Contraband Camp” were appalling. Men, women and children lived half underground in dark, damp, smoky dens.

Nurse Sophronia Bucklin’s first-hand accounts of the “Contraband Camp” described men burrowing like “beasts of the field in half-subterranean dens.” Nurse Sophronia Bucklin described the scene “A hole from three to four feet deep was dug by them in the black soil, and roofed over with boards, on which turf was closely packed. An opening which admitted them on their hands and feet, and one for the escape of smoke…were the only vents for the impure air, and the only openings for light.”

Changing Fortunes
Some residents of the “Contraband Camp” found jobs at Point Lookout as military service staff or laborers, jettisoning the bonds of slavery for the government payroll.
 
Location. 38° 2.478′ N, 76° 19.314′ W. Marker is in Scotland, Maryland, in St. Mary's County. Marker is on Maryland Route 5. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Scotland MD 20687, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers.
"Contraband" Camp Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, March 11, 2012
2. "Contraband" Camp Marker
At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A Seaside Resort at Point Lookout (a few steps from this marker); A Place of History (a few steps from this marker); Smallpox Epidemic (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Death at Point Lookout (about 500 feet away); Point Lookout-Hammond Hospital (about 600 feet away); John Wilkes Booth (about 600 feet away); Point Lookout State Park (about 600 feet away); A Crucial Point (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Scotland.
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
"Contraband" Camp Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, March 11, 2012
3. "Contraband" Camp Marker
"Contraband" Camp Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, March 11, 2012
4. "Contraband" Camp Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 15, 2012, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Md 21234. This page has been viewed 351 times since then and 25 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on October 15, 2012, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Md 21234. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.
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