prisoners for drinking, washing, adn cooking, are of great purity, containing only traces of the sulphates and chlorides, and of lime, magnesia, and iron. The bakery is situated near this steam, and one of the Confederate regiments is camped on the hill above, but these sources of contamination are too far distant to sensibly affect the constant flowint waters. The only perceptible effect was a slight increase of the chlorides.
The waters of the stream which the hospital inclosure, as well as of the deep well within the hospital grounds, were in like manner of remarkable purity, and contained only slight traces of the chlorudes and sulphates and the salts of lime, magnesia, and iron. The waters of the steams issuing from the stockade and hospital are contained by the excrements, filth, and offal of the Federal prisoners, and contain not only these matters, and various salts resulting from their decomposition, but also numerous maggots, animalculae, and cryptogamous plants. As these waters loaded with filth and human excrement flow sluggishly through the swamp below, filled with trees and reeds coated with a filthy deposit, they emit an intolerable and most sickening stench. Standing as I did over these waters in the middle of a hot day in September, as they rolled sluggishly forth from the stockade, after having received the filth and exrements of 20,000 men, the stench was disgusting and overpowering, and if it was surpassed in unpleas antness by anything, it was only in the disgusting appearance of the filthy almost-stagnant waters moving slowly between the stumps and roots and trunks of fallen trees and thick branching reeds and vines, with innumerable long-tailed, large, white maggots, swollen peas, and fermenting excrements and fragments of bread and meat.
Vegetation.- The vegetation of the highlands and hills indicates the poverty of the soil. The low grounds swamps bordering the steams are of too great extent, and they do not manifest by their growth any special fertility. The forest trees covering the high grounds and hills consist cheifly of the long-leaf pine (Pinus australis), yellow pine (P. mitis), barren scrub oak (Quercus catesbaei), black jack oak (Q. nigra), post oak (Q. obtusiloba), upland willow oack (Q. cinerea), Q. discolor, Q. coccinea, Q. rubra, Q. falcate, Q. biloba, persimmon (Diospyros virginiana), chinquapin (Castanea pumila), black walnut (Juglans nigra), holly (Ilex opaca), wild plum (Prunus umbellata), Prunus chicasa, Prunus virginiana, maple (Acer rubrum), sweet leaf, wild haw, whortleberry, and many other shrubs. With the exception of the pines, the oaks and all the trees growing upon these barren hills presented a stunded diminutive appearance.
The low grounds and swamps bordering the steams were clothed chiefly with sweet gun (Liquidambar styraciflua), tulip tree (Liriodendron tulipifera), black gum (Nyssa multifora), tupelo (Nyssa aquatica and N. uniflora), red flowering maple (Acer rubrum), lined beech, small magnolia, sweet bay, red bay, myrtle, the common cane, and numberous shurbs and vines, also several species of pine (P. serotina and P. palustris, P.----), and of oak (Q. aquatica, Q. alba). The swamps in this immediate vicinity appear to rest upon sand and to have no great depth of vegetable mold.
From this examination we conclude that there is no recognizable source of disease in the soil and waters of Andersonville, except perhaps to a limited extent in the immediate neghborhood of the narrow swamps and low grounds bordering the steams.
As far as I could ascertain, the high lands of Sumter County have proved very healthy to the inhabitants. Along the borders of the
38 R R-SERIES II, VOL VIII