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[338] majority who survived were exchanged at different times during the next six or eight months.

Lieut. ‘Billy’ McGinnis, always a source of fun, did not have the fondness for a joke starved out of him, even in a rebel prison. Most of his hair had fallen out by the time he was placed in ‘Camp Sorghum’ at Columbia, S. C., and all he had to wear was a dressing gown which had been allotted to him from one of the Sanitary Commission's boxes which had been sent to the prison. With his bald head and unkept beard of gray, he appeared much older than he really was.

One day a rebel officer who came into the office, saw McGinnis walking about in his flowing robe, and exclaimed, ‘It's a shame. Ef I could I'd let thet po “ ol” man go free.’ ‘Old man,’ exclaimed McGinnis, ‘I guess not, yet,’—and he turned a handspring in front of the kind hearted officer, who disappeared immediately.

The personal diary of Joseph E. Hodgkins, at that time a sergeant in Company K,—one of those captured on June 22nd, gives an interesting description of the events in the rebel prisons and, except for dates, perhaps, the experiences he chronicles are similar to those of the others.

He says:

June 25, 1864. This afternoon we received a ration of corn bread and soup—and such soup. As the fellows say, they have to dive for a bean. In the afternoon they were stripped and searched.

June 26th. Were taken from Libby to Belle Isle, a hot, sultry place.

June 29th. Received rations of bread and pork or ham fat early this morning and left the island. Marched to the depot and took cars, riding all day and into the night, and stopped at Lynchburg. Had but little water today.

June 30th. Spent last night in the cars. Sold my inkstand and pocketbook for three small loaves of bread, which I divided with two of my comrades. One of our boys paid 50cts. for an onion and another paid $10.00 for a thin blackberry pie. I have seen men pay $2.00, $5.00 and even $7.00 for loaves of bread. Received four days rations, as we are to march to Danville. Rations consisted of twenty crackers and about a pound of ham fat. The distance to Danville is 45 miles and the reason for our march is the fact that the railroad is torn up by Yankee troops. Started just before night and before dark halted in a swampy place where we spent the night.

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