Wednesday 17 January 2024

Andersonville Irish Project identifies more Irish Civil War soldiers

The Andersonville Irish Project has announched that 950 Irish men have now been identified among those buried at the former prisoner of war camp (Camp Sumter), which is preserved at the Andersonville National Historic Site in Georgia.

Ireland's US Civil War dead - click for interactive map

Only three months ago, when a memorial to Irish-American Civil War soldiers and their families was unveiled at the site by the Government of Ireland, the number of identified individuals was 851, so the painstaking research work, most of which is carried out by unpaid volunteers, has been moving on at a pace. You can watch a video of the memorial dedication on the site here.

You can also view the 400 locations in Ireland associated with each of the 950 victims on IrishAmericanCivilWar's updated interactive map. Click on the image right.

Camp Sumpter was the largest and most deadly of the 150 military prisons of the Civil War. Controlled by the Confederate Army, it was created in February 1864 abd served as a prisoner of war camp until April 1865. 

Of the approximately 45,000 Union soldiers imprisoned there, nearly 13,000 died. The crowded conditions were horrendous, and most of those who died were suffering from scurvy, diarrhea or dysentery. More than 25% of the identified Irish dead died in August 1864, the deadliest month at the camp.

In addition to Camp Sumter (aka Andersonvill Prison) the Andersonville National Historic Site, which is managed by the US National Park Service, is home to the National Prisoner of War Musuem and Andersonville National Cemetery. The latter has 13,714 POW graves and is also used as a burial place for more recent veterans and their dependents.

2024 marks the 160th Anniversary of Camp Sumter Military Prison.