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Preface.

In presenting the following narrative of suffering endured while a prisoner in the socalled Southern Confederacy, the principal object had in view by the author, is to place before those into whose hands this volume may come, a plain, straightforward, unvarnished account of facts.

In regard to the workings and results of that system of human bondage to which our country owes its present difficulties, there have been so many mistaken ideas, statements, and theories, that it has become the duty of every true and loyal man to expose the truth; or, speaking with more correctness, to strip from the hideous skeleton of Slavery all its gaily painted and deceptive cloaks and masks, and to exhibit it in all its ghastly repulsiveness.

It is my purpose in the succeeding pages to narrate simply how, after being captured at the battle of Shiloh, or Pittsburg Landing, I was, on the most frivolous charges, tried for my life before several prominent Rebel Generals, among [2] whom were Bragg and Beauregard; how I was subsequently chained with negro chains and cast into military prisons and common jails; how, escaping from these, and in company with Lieutenant A. P. Collins, I made my way to the swamps; how we lived in these malarious marshes for three weeks; how we were hunted with bloodhounds; how we were assisted by the slaves in our flight, and lastly, how, being recaptured, we spent weary months in confinement, and were finally, released on exchange from our dreadful captivity.

To all those friends who have cheered him since his return home with kind words and deeds, the author begs leave to extend his warmest thanks,--but more especially to Rev. Alexander Clark, Editor of Clark's School Visitor, who revised and arranged the Manuscripts for the press, and to whose scholarly abilities this volume owes so much. He desires also to testify to like kindness on the part of Rev. W. B. Watkins, A. M., and Milo A. Townsend, Esq., of New Brighton, Pennsylvania, whose friendship has laid him under a debt of grateful remembrance.

J. J. Geer. Springfield Ohio, June 8, 1863.

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