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[73]

Camp Douglas, where ten percent of the prisoners died one month In February, 1863, out of 3,884 prisoners, 387 died at Camp Douglas in Chicago, or almost exactly ten per cent., a mortality rate for one month not reached by any other large prison during the war. The Camp was on low ground, the drainage bad, and conditions generally were unsanitary. Its abandonment as a prison was urged by President H. W. Bellows of the Sanitary Commission. It is hard for us to realize, as we look at this group of apparently hale and hearty young men, how great a toll death took by reason of the ignorance or indifference of their keepers. It was no contemplated part of the war to allow such things to happen, but those in charge of the prisoners were often hampered by lack of appropriations and delay in delivering supplies. The question of the proper feeding and adequate housing of prisoners in sanitary surroundings remained unsolved by either side until the close of the protracted conflict.

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