Publication History:

Place of Publication:  Camp Douglas (Prisoner of War Camp), Cook County, IL

Frequency:  Unknown

Volume and Issue Data:  Vol. 1, No. 1, after January 1864

Size and Format:  Four pages

Editor/Publisher:  Confederate Prisoners of War

Title Changes and Continuation:  None

General Description and Notes:

Camp Douglas, named after Stephen Douglas who owned the property, was located on the west side of Cottage Grove Avenue between 31st and 33rd streets in Chicago. In 1861, it was designed for recruiting and training Union soldiers, but after the capture of Fort Donelson in 1862, it became a prison camp for approximately 7,000 Confederate prisoners. The manuscript paper contains camp gossip, editorials, news from home, poetry, and advertisements. The “Prospectus” (page 1) states, “Feeling the want of a literary sheet of some discription [sic], in our midst, we have at length concluded to place before the public of Camp Douglas a spicy little paper, The Prisoner Vidette.”

The extant manuscript the Chicago Public Library Collection was restored at the Document Conservation Center, Atlanta, in 1976.

Information Sources:

Bibliography:  Mabel McIlvaine, ed., “History of Camp Douglas” in Reminiscenes of Chicago During the Civil War (Chicago, 1914), pp. 161-194; Thomas A. Orlando and Marie Gecik, compilers, Treasures of the Chicago Public Library (Chicago, 1977), Item 154, pp. 77-78

Locations: Grand Army Hall and Memorial Association Collection, Chicago Public Library.