Horrifying photos of victims of the bloodiest war in US history
Categories: North AmericaBy Pictolic https://pictolic.com/article/horrifying-photos-of-victims-of-the-bloodiest-war-in-us-history1.html
Heartbreaking photos show the true horrors of the American Civil War, which claimed more than half a million lives in just four years.
(Careful! The material presented in the collection may seem unpleasant or frightening)
Unidentified emaciated prisoners.
An unidentified emaciated soldier receives help in a hospital in May 1865.
Alfred Stratton, whose arms were torn off by a cannon shot during the American Civil War on June 18, 1864. At that time he was only 19 years old.
African-American men collect the remains of soldiers killed in the battle of Cold Harbor, June 1864.
Soldiers who fell in the Battle of Gettysburg, the bloodiest battle during the American Civil War.
Construction of Andersonville.
Andersonville, August 17, 1864. This picture shows a wooden fence. If a prisoner went outside, the guards were ordered to kill him.
The Civil War remains the bloodiest in U.S. history. Lasting from 1861 to 1865, it claimed 620 thousand lives. These photos show death and destruction on the battlefields and in the infamous Andersonville Military Prison. Another name for the camp is Sumter, the largest prison in the South, where captured soldiers of the North were kept.
Camp Sumter was built after the Union-Confederate prisoner exchange system failed in 1863. The system collapsed because Southerners refused to recognize black soldiers as equal to whites.
Prisoners in Andersonville, 1864.
The prisoners who were sent to the camp knew that this meant a death sentence. There were terrible conditions in the camp, diseases were widespread, and there was not enough food.
The first prisoners were brought to the camp in February 1864, even before the camp was completed. Sumter, which was named Andersonville after a nearby railroad station, was built to accommodate 10,000 people, but was often four times crowded. In August 1864, Camp Sumter received more than 33,000 prisoners of war, who were kept on 10 hectares without shelter. The prisoners had only the clothes they were wearing when they were captured. Men in ragged uniforms were forced to sleep in makeshift tents or holes dug in the ground.
There was a shortage of food and water in Andersonville, and 13,000 people died there due to disease and starvation in the last 12 months of the Civil War. The only source of water was a small canal that ran through the territory, but even that was soon polluted with sewage.
Wirtz was found guilty of numerous murders and war crimes, despite his protests. He was sentenced to death, and on November 10, 1865, he was hanged.
About 56,000 people died in the camps during the Civil War, but Sumter was the most disastrous: a third of the Union soldiers stationed there died in just 14 months.
For 14 months, the camp commandant was Henry Wirtz. A month after the Confederates surrendered at the Battle of Appomattox, Wirth was arrested for the murders of soldiers in Andersonville. As soon as the horrific stories and shocking photos of survivors turned into living skeletons from starvation reached the north, Wirtz became one of the nation's most hated people.
Wirtz was brought to Washington to answer for his crimes. His trial began in August 1865 and lasted two months. More than a hundred witnesses testified. Some claimed to have seen Wirtz personally killing and torturing prisoners, as well as ordering guards to do the same. But Wirtz claimed that he was simply following orders, and blamed the South for the lack of food.
Despite all the protests, Wirtz was declared guilty of murder and war crimes and sentenced to death. He was hanged on November 10, 1865 at the age of 41 and buried in an unmarked grave.
Confederate soldiers who died at the Battle of Spotsilvainie, May 19, 1864.
Fallen in the Battle of Antietam, September 1862.
A dead Confederate soldier in a trench.
For four terrible years, the country has experienced not only a bloody military conflict, but also the most severe racial hatred. The Confederates used various methods to kill hundreds of thousands of former slaves during the war. The exact number of them is unknown due to the deliberate lack of accounting.