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Prisoners; Medicine

Views of Andersonville Prison, 1865

Views of Andersonville Prison, 1865

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Maine Historical Society

Captured: POWs

Survival was a challenge for soldiers taken prisoner on either side of the conflict.

Prisons confined large numbers of captured soldiers in relatively small areas – conditions that meant disease was rampant.

Shortages of food, clothing, and often of shelter, were common.

Nearly 30 percent of soldiers – about 13,000 men – held at the infamous Andersonville Prison in Georgia died.

About a quarter of Confederate soldiers held at Elmira Prison in New York met the same fate.

The length of the war and the number of prisoners overwhelmed both sides.


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