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The corner of Libby where Federal officers tunneled under the street About a hundred Union officers escaped from Libby Prison, chiefly by crawling through a tunnel bored under the street shown in this photograph. Libby was used exclusively for officers after the first year of the war. A few of them banded together, kept the secret from even their fellow-prisoners, and dug a tunnel from a storeroom in the basement under the wall and the adjoining street. The tendency of the human mole is to bore upward; the tunnel came to the top too soon on the near side of the fence. It was finally completed into the lot. But on the very night that the prisoners planned to escape, the news became known to their fellows. Men fought like demons in the close, dark cellar to be the next to crawl into the narrow hole. About a hundred of them got away before the noise attracted the attention of the guards. The fence was immediately destroyed, as appears by this photograph of April, 1865.

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William Libby (1)
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April, 1865 AD (1)
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