War of the Rebellion: Serial 119 Page 0982 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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additions - whole building requires repair, especially north wing, which is in a dilapidated and apparently dangerous condition. Prevention of fire - no adequate precautions taken; plenty of hose, but too small to be effective. Medical attendance - chaplain, hitherto careless and inefficient, medical supervision being only directed to the hospital, and carelessly at that; apparently no attention paid to the sanitary condition of the prisoners in quarters. It is to be hoped that Doctor Breed will inaugurate a reform in this particular. Discipline and police - no discipline perceptible; spasmodic attempts at police by deluging the building with water. Nurses - men, detailed prisoners; women, two Sisters of Charity, chiefly attending to preparation of special diet. Postmortem rooms and dead - house - in upper story of building over hospital; location inconvenient and improper. Interments - by contract, in city cemetery. Diseases prevalent - pneumonia, bronchitis, catarrh, erysipelas. Diseases zymotic - one case of varioloid occurred in the prison about ten days since, was at once removed. Diseases, mitigation and prevention of - from the utter want of attention to sanitary management, and the ill-directed efforts at policing in some places and its entire neglect in others, with the absence of all ventilation, it is only to be wondered at that the sick list and mortality is not much greater than it is.

Report for January - aggregate number of prisoners, ---; aggregate sick, 347; deaths, 30; percentage of deaths to aggregate strength, ---; to sick, 0. 086. No smallpox. At present sick in hospital, 124. Medical officers - Surg. B. B. Breed, U. S. Volunteers, in charge, has but just reported, and has not yet assumed charge; three acting assistant surgeons. Actg. Asst. Surg. G. H. Hood has hitherto been in charge, but is now relieved by Surgeon Breed. His administration of the medical affairs of this and the Myrtle Street Prison is but a commentary on the report which I have so often had occasion to make of the general unfitness of contract surgeons for a charge of such importance and responsibility. The condition of this prison was bad enough at my last inspection. It is many times worse now. As to the Myrtle Street Prison, its sanitary condition is a disgrace to its commandant, and still more so to the officer who has in charge its medical supervision. Prison fund, January 31, 1864, $4,529. 20.

This prison appears to be policed in but one way. A hose is led into each room, which is then flooded with water, washing the rubbish and debris into the hall, while a large portio of water finds its way through the cracks and holes in the floor into the rooms beneath. The bedding and blankets are left in the bunks, and by the time the washing is over are about as wet as the floor. In the of the strong rooms which had just undergone this policing operation a red-hot stove was in full blast and the door and window tightly closed. The window at best could be opened but about six inches. A fetid steam pervaded the room, which sickened me in a few minutes, and this is but a type of the entire prison. The north wing of the prison, containing one of the principal prison quarters, the largest hospital ward, and in the basement, the kitchen and mess-room and laundry is in an apparently dangerous condition. The west wall has settled some eight inches in the center, bulges about the same distance near the foundation, and presents several wide cracks running from the foundation nearly to the top of the building. It has been strongly braced and propped on the outside. Still, it appears, at least to an unpracticed eye, in great danger of falling. I would suggest that a survey be at once held on the building to determine the question of its safety. The only prison yard, or place where the prisoners can exercise in the open air, is on the west side of the