Voice from the Commonwealth
Commentary, World Views and Occasional Rants from a small 'l' libertarian in Massachussetts

"If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest for freedom, go home and leave us in peace. We seek not your council nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen." - Samuel Adams

Thursday, October 03, 2002

That's a pretty cool story. The last Confederate prisoner of war buried in the North will return to Florida this month.

Born in 1827 in Dublin to Scottish parents, Johnston sailed to Florida with his parents when he was 3. He went to sea at 14 and became an engineer. After returning to Ireland for several years, he sailed back to Florida and in 1853 met and married his wife. They had five children.

When the Civil War broke out in 1861, Johnston, being a sailor, joined the Confederate Navy and was made a lieutenant. He was aboard the blockade-runner CSS Atlanta when it was captured by the USS Weehawken off Savannah, Ga., on June 17, 1863. Johnston and other ship's officers were imprisoned at Fort Warren on George's Island in Boston Harbor. On Oct. 13, 1863, he died at the fort, most likely from a combination of pneumonia, dysentery and diarrhea. He was about 39. Union guards and other prisoners collected $75 to buy a 1,500-pound granite stone marker for his grave. That marker will follow Johnston's remains on the journey to Florida.

< email | 10/03/2002 09:33:00 AM | link

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