Thursday, March 2, 2017

Diary of 1st Sergeant John L. Ransom: January 24, 1864

We are all troubled with heart-burn, sour stomach, &c. Drink weak lye made from ashes for it. Every day some new ones come inside, but they know nothing as to the prospects of our being exchanged. All are considerably surprised to find themselves in quite so bad a place, and the subject of prison life begins to interest them. Good deal of gambling going on among prisoners. Chuck-a-luck is the favorite game. You lay your ration of bread down on a figure on a board, and a fellow with a dice-box shakes it up a little, throws out the dice, and your bread is gone Don't understand the game myself. That's all I ever saw of the game. Lay down the bread and it's gone. Rather a one sided affair. Some men are very filthy, which makes it disagreeable for those of more cleanly habits. I believe that many, very many, who now die, would live if they adopted the rules that our mess has, and lived up to them. It is the only way to get along.

SOURCE: John L. Ransom, Andersonville Diary, p. 26-7

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