War of the Rebellion: Serial 118 Page 0512 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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modifications have been made from time to time to make them suitable they are of a very temporary character and generally affording little security for the prisoners. There are other great objections to them, viz: They are more or less connected with large camps, where from there being frequent changes in the troops there is little discipline and the management of the prisoners is unavoidably irregular and unsatisfactory.

At Camp Chase there are three inclosures in the midst of a large camp; the ground is very flat with little drainage and in wet weather it is muddy; the stench from the sinks particularly during warm weather pollutes the air of the whole camp and soldiers and prisoners alike suffer in consequence of it.

Camp Morton, near Indianapolis, was originally a fair ground, and so far as the location in concerned is a very favorable place for a prison, but it occupies a large area requiring a large guard, and is inclosed by a very temporary fence which is used on two sides as the back of a shed which forms part of the barracks, giving prisoners ready egress if they are disposed to take advantage of it. The location has the advantage of a steam of water running through it and there are many shade trees standing, but the camp is required for the assembling of Indiana troops, and it is also a desirable place to assemble paroled troops when occasions require it and the appropriation of it to prisoners of was has been case is attended with much inconvenience.

Camp Butler, near Springfield, has accommodations for only 2, 000 prisoners - too limited a number to be of much consequence; besides the camp is more or less occupied by our troops all the time.

Camp Douglas, at Chicago, can accommodate 8, 000 prisoners with a suitable guard; but while so occupied it can be used for no other purpose. The possibilities are that it may be required for paroled troops, for whom it will form a good depot for all coming from the States of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois and Michigan, or for the assembling of new levies from the same States.

It would seem then that it is very desirable that a new prison should be established for the exclusive use of prisoners of war at some point selected with a view to the advantage of easy access, the cheapness of supplies and facility for its construction. A place near Lake Michigan would have the advantage of the best market for lumber and supplies, but then it would lead to the necessity of a longer route and some additional cost of transportation. At point near to the river more easy of access there would be the objection of the presence of numerous sympathizers with the rebellion, which would lead to many inconveniences and a greater scarcity and increased cost of materials and supplies. Among the towns most convenient to the field of operations of our armies in the West and on the principal lines of travel are Vincennes, Terre Haute, Lafayette, Logansport, Fort Wayne, Michigan City and Chicago. The last has the advantage of all others in its large market for supplies of all kinds. Of the others, where the shorter route would give them an advantage worthy of consideration, the choice would seem to be between Terre Haute and Lafayette. Whether a good location can be found, possessing a good site and abundant supply of water, can only be decided by personal examination. If we go north of Lafayette it would be preferable to go at once to Chicago, where the abundant supplies and building materials would probably more than balance the additional cost of transportation.

Fort Warren will only accommodate and it will therefore not serve as a place of confinement for all officers that may be captured,