American Defenders of Land, Sea & Sky  
A Young Nation Divided
   The Civil War (1861-1865)

Andersonville National Historical Site
We held each other prisoner.

Andersonville National Historical Site
Andersonville, Georgia

   During the Civil War, both the Union and the Confederacy held prisoners. Andersonville, a Confederate prison camp, was the largest of all. Between February, 1864 and April, 1865, 45,000 Union soldiers were prisoners in a facility designed for about 10,000. The site had been selected for its good water supply and safe distance from the major battle areas. But severe overcrowding at Andersonville soon led to food shortages, contamination of the water, and mistreatment of the prisoners. As a result, over 12,000 soldiers died of disease and starvation.

  At Andersonville National Cemetery you can also see a statue of Clara Barton that honors the Civil War nurse for her leadership in marking the graves of the Union soldiers who died at the prison camp. During the Civil War Barton served as an independent volunteer on the Union side.

Follow our history to...Ford's Theater National Historical SiteTake me to Washington, D.C.

Defenders homecontentsteacher's guide