From the National Tribune, 9/9/1882
WHERE RAW DOG
WAS A LUXURY.
To the Editor NATIONAL TRIBUNE:
I am a ___ advocate of your paper, and am doing all I can
to get up a club for it.
I read with great interest the “Southern Prison Life”
sketches. I was a prisoner myself for fifteen months, being confined at Belle
Isle, Libby, Andersonville, and Savannah, Ga. In no case has the writer
overstepped the bounds of truth. I was captured in a cavalry charge at Liberty
Mills, Va., on September 22, 1863; was taken to Richmond and kept on Belle Isle
till about June 1, 1864. Many froze to death during the winter; others were
tortured in the most barbarous manner. I have seen men put astride a wooden
horse such as masons use, say five feet high, with their feet tied to stakes in
the ground, and there left for an hour or more on a cold winter morning. Often
their feet would freeze and burst open.
A lieutenant’s dog was once enticed over the bank and
taken into an old tent, where it was killed and eaten raw. Your humble servant
had a piece of it. For this act of hungry men the camp was kept out of rations
all day. The prison was guarded by the famous Home Guard, composed of boys and
old men Our rations consisted of corn-bread, a piece about two and a half inches
square to each man. Sometimes they would give us a piece of raw bacon;
sometimes, in lieu of that, we would get boiled beef, but in very small pieces.
Bean soup was their favorite food for us. The beans, or stock peas, as they
called them, were such as the cattle would not eat. In June we were shipped to
Andersonville, Ga., and of the prison you are getting a very good description.
[remainder of narrative, regarding Andersonville, was not transcribed.]
WILLIAM H. WOOD
2nd New York Cavalry
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