From the National Tribune, 2/14/1884

Experience of an Ex-Prisoner - One of Thousands.

To the Editor NATIONAL TRIBUNE:

I was captured at Brandy Station, Va. , in a cavalry charge on the 11th of October, 1863 , with several more of my regiment - Captain C. A. Adams, of my company (H), and Captain Beeman ad Lieutenant Hyde, of company B, 1st regiment, Vermont cavalry. The commissioned officers were seperated from the rest of us, of course, after capture, except Lieutenant Hyde, who died in Andersonville from the effects of vaccination with poisoned virus. Captain Adams escaped from Salisbury . From Brandy Station we walked six miles to Culpeper Court-House, arriving after night. The next morning we started for Richmond, staid one night and day in Libby, and then went into what was called the laundry building for a few days, and then to Pemberton prison. Small-pox broke out among us there. On the 17th of January, we were taken to Belle Isle; were there fifteen days in mid-winter without any shelter. The lieutenant in command of the camp said they had tents, but no tent poles. The cold, damp fog from the river, running with floating ice, made it necessary to walk most of the time - day and night - to keep warm, and many a brave comrade gave up in despair  and died a sacrifice for the Nation he had volunteered to save. But this was not my portion, for I stood the hardships of Belle Isle until the 8(?)th of March, 1864, when they told us we were ordered to Richmond for exchange; but on the 10th we were put on cattle cars and started on our way to Andersonville, arriving at that place on the 13th of March. Captain Wirz ordered us in line, took names, company and regiment, and marched us to the stockade, where we found about 3,000 prisoners. We were formed into detachments and located south of the north gate, near the crossing of the stream. I was in Andersonville six months, and was bare-footed and bare-headed most of the time. I saw three men shot by the guard - two while dipping water under the dead-line and one who had turned over in his sleep under the dead-line. On the 10th of September I was sent to Savannah , where I was admitted in the hospital, crippled with scurvy and rheumatism so that I could not walk. On the 19th of November I was paroled, but had to be hauled in a wagon to the boat landing, where we took the steamer Beauregard down to Fort Pulaski , and went aboard the United States flag-boat, thence being transferred to the Baltic, and afterwards to the Blackstone, which brought us to Annapolis . Could our United States Senators and members of Congress look for one moment on the squad of living skeletons that left the hospital at Savannah on the 19th of November, 1864, for exchange - would they or could they, in justice to the brave defenders of the flag of our Union, refuse to cast their votes in favor of a liberal compensation for those who suffered that the Nation might live.

S. D. DAVIS,
Private, Co. H, 1st Vt. Cav.
HARRISONVILLE , MO.

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