James M. Gillespie’s Andersonville of the North is based more on Mr. Gillispie’s opinion & bias than fact.
The deliberate withholding of medicine, food, blankets & clothing from Confederate P.O.W.`s were sanctioned from Abe Lincoln down through the War Department to the individual prison commanders even though there was an abundant supply of all to distribute to the prisoners. If Mr. Gillispie did any research for this subject he had to conveniently leave this out of his story as these facts are well documented in the yankees own official records.
It does seem however that every prison commander in the north was very innovative in implementing his own brand of cruel & unusual punishment on these Confederate P.O.W.`s. Some P.O.W. camps even set up viewing areas so public officials & select civilians could witness the cold & calculated mistreatment of these prisoners including yankee soldiers randomly firing into the general prison population, rations being cut with supply readily available then refusing prisoners the right to buy their own supplies from sutlers and refusing to give them mail from loved ones which contained many of those supplies.
This list of war crimes against the union goes on & on. I will not try to list the known ones from each & every prison camp as the information is readily available to anyone wishing to do honest research on this subject, including Mr. Gillispie.
Its ironic that the Commandant Wertz of Andersonville prison was executed for not providing that which he did not have, while people like Gillispie try to make hero`s of yankees who systematically plotted to withhold supplies that they did have to kill Confederate P.O.W.`s. I guess Gillispie consider this justifiable yankee “justice."
Billy E. Price
Ashville Alabama