Saturday, June 3, 2017

Diary of 1st Sergeant John L. Ransom: April 12, 1864

Another beautiful but warm day with no news. Insects of all descriptions making their appearance, such as, lizards, a worm four or five inches long, fleas, maggots &c. There is so much filth about the camp that it is terrible trying to live here. New prisoners are made sick the first hours of their arrival by the stench which pervades the prison. Old prisoners do not mind it so much, having become used to it, No visitors come near us any more. Everybody sick, almost, with scurvy — an awful disease. New cases every day. I am afraid some contagious disease will get among us, and if so every man will die. My blanket a perfect Godsend. Is large and furnishes shelter from the burning sun. Hendryx has a very sore arm which troubles him much. Even he begins to look and feel bad. James Gordan, or Gordenian, (I don't know which) was killed to day by the guard. In crossing the creek on a small board crossway men are often shot. It runs very near the dead line, and guards take the occasion to shoot parties who put their hands on the dead line in going across. Some also reach up under the dead line to get purer water, and are shot Men seemingly reckless of their lives New prisoners coming in and are shocked at the sights.

SOURCE: John L. Ransom, Andersonville Diary, p. 50-1

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