1st Edition – 1905
Preface: To the dead and living comrades of the Immortal Six Hundred, Confederate officers, prisoners of war, who were confined in the stockade on Morris Island, South Carolina, under fire of our own guns shelling that island; and who were subsequently starved on rations of rotten corn meal and onion pickle at Fort Pulaski, Georgia, and Hilton Head, South Carolina, 1864-65, by order of Edwin M. Stanton, United States Secretary of War to all who remained true unto the end, under the terrible ordeal of fire and starvation, this history is affectionately inscribed with a comrades love. J. OGDEN MURRAY.
Text: The six hundred Confederate officers, prisoners of war confined on Morris Island by order of the Federal Government. It is put in print for two reasons: First, to preserve the record of this gallant band; second, to give to the world a true history of the wanton cruelty inflicted upon helpless prisoners of war, without the least shadow of excuse. The only information that the United States Government had that there were six hundred Union soldiers, prisoners of war, under fire in Charleston, S. C., was based upon the word of runaway niggers, Confederate deserters, Union scallawags, and such people, whose word should not have been taken by any decent man without corroboration; yet Gen. J. G. Foster, U. S. A., commanding Department of the South, headquarters, Hilton Head, S. C., accepted the word of these creatures without question, and inflicted upon helpless prisoners of war cruelties that would have shamed Nero.
There never were any Union prisoners of war under fire of their own guns in any part of the South; there were never any prisoners of war treated with harshness or cruelty by order of the Confederate Government authorities; but on the contrary all was done to lessen the burden of prison life that could be done by the Richmond government, and men of the highest rank in the United States Army attest this fact. The cruelty charged against the South is as false as the tongues that utter it, and it has been proven false time and time again. Even Andersonville, that much maligned prison, has been proven to have been a very paradise in comparison to Camp Chase, Rock Island, Elmira, and other Yankee prisons.
The treatment meted to the six hundred Confederate officers, prisoners of war, confined on Morris Island, S. C., by the United States Secretary of War, is a blot upon the escutcheon of the United States that can never be blotted out nor removed. It was cowardly, it was inhuman, and cruel. The names of the men responsible for this cruelty must be written—and they will be written—upon history’s blacklists of cruel men. Stanton, Foster, and Halleck, are names that must always cast a shadow upon the days of 1861-65.
Inventory Number: HIS 046 / SOLD