Anyone who is rational
Chuck and all,
This is in reference to the ongoing debate of the treatment by Federal troops towards Confederate POW’s, being simply the misfortunes of war. Anyone who believes there were no differences between Andersonville and such places as Camp Douglas Chicago is either irrational, illiterate, (whether a published author or not), or is a sadist.
I have only been to three Federally operated POW camps Alton Il, Rock Island Il, and the most infamous Camp Douglas in Chicago Il. By any standards of morality, and humanity, all three were deplorable. It has been my good fortune to thrice be in the company of George Levy author of "To Die in Chicago", the story of Camp Douglas. On those three occasions I was privileged to attend several hours of lectures by Mr. Levy, and view hundreds of photos via slide show presentation of Camp Douglas, and it’s conditions. It is safe to say he is an authority on Camp Douglas. There is not one pence difference in Camp Douglas and the POW camps of the Axis powers of WW II.
Andersonville will always be a blight upon the CSA, yet few of the damnyankee persuasion are even aware of the deplorable treatment towards Confederate prisoners in any of the numerous Federal prison camps. If they are they just don’t care.
The mass grave in Chicago is one of the most somber places I have ever spent any time. Of the multiple thousands buried there, remain thousands more unaccounted for, because the original place of burial was a swamp and countless brave CSA soldiers simply were washed away becoming little more than bait for catfish , turtles and gar.
In defense of the citizens of Chicago, countless deplored the conditions and treatment, and some even died trying to come to the comfort of those imprisoned there.
Black Confederates were shot on sight. This is not fabricated history made to cast a poor light on the Federal troops, this is just the plain simple documented truth. Much like the Nazi’s, the Federals kept detailed records. Someday pray those records come back to haunt them as they did the Nazis.
The "ugly rock” as Brother Scroggins refers to it, as well as the guards buried there is a travesty to basic human morality. Was it not enough to treat our venerable vets worse than dogs, must the same guards that haunted their lives while living, continue to haunt them all these years later in death?
To the men of SCV camp 1507, I shall always salute you for your dedication and wonderful Memorial Service. I have stood shoulder to shoulder with you multiple times when live rounds were fired in retort of the musket salute, I along with my wife and child have wept like babies at the tolling of the bell and the reading of the roll of dead by the men of your camp. One of the highlights of my life was performing Dixie with then Camp Commander Jim Wilson at the site of the mass grave. Camp members Steve Quick, and Bruce Buchweitz (forgive me Bruce if spelled it wrong I have not seen you in years, are among some the best CSA historians I have ever met bar none, and their dedication to the Cause is undeniable, as well is the rest of the camps members.
It is not an easy task to be Confederate in Cook County illannoy.
In closing, I personally wouldn’t walk across the road to spit on anyone on fire that holds with the belief that the treatment by the Federals towards Confederate POW’s was just.
Heritage Officer Camp 2022 Ga Div SCV
Still behind enemy lines