Confederate prisoners of war at Camp
Douglas, c. 1864. During the Civil War, Camp Douglas, originally
constructed at Thirty-first Street and Cottage Grove Avenue, Chicago, as a
Union Army training post, served as a Confederate prisoner-of-war camp.
Between 1862 and 1865, the camp housed about twenty-six thousand prisoners
in temporary, wooden barracks. As a result of harsh conditions, some four
thousand men died at the camp; they were buried in unmarked paupers'
graves in Chicago's City Cemetery, located at the southeast corner of what
is now Lincoln Park. In 1867, the remains were reburied at Oak Woods
Cemetery, about five miles south of the camp.
Camp Douglas was so named because
Stephen A. Douglas, the powerful
Democratic senator from Illinois, purchased land in that area; possibly it
was built on land owned by him?