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Department 1

Civil War Institute


In the late summer of 1861, just after the battle of Bull Run, Union seaman Lewis Horton was captured while serving on the U.S.S. Massachusetts and taken to Libby Prison in Richmond, Virginia. In transport, Horton would recall being shackled to his comrades and marched through the streets for people to jeer at and being forced to spend a night in a building used for convict slaves. Hobnails, Horton remembered, had been hammered partly into the walls and floors of the building, making it too torturous to lie down or lean against the walls. Once he arrived in Richmond, Horton would meet the commandant of the prison, Lieutenant David Todd. Todd was none other than the half-brother of Mary Todd Lincoln, one of several of her siblings to swear loyalty to the Confederacy. [excerpt]


This blog post originally appeared in The Gettysburg Compiler and was created by students at Gettysburg College.