Men of New York’s "Fighting Sixty-Ninth,"
Prisoners in Charleston's Castle Pinckney
The prisoners shown in this photograph are members of
Colonel Michael Corcoran's Irish Regiment, the Sixty-ninth New York. They were
captured at the first battle of Bull Run, July 21, 1861. Colonel Corcoran (shown
on a previous page) and his men were taken first to Richmond, and then in
September to Castle Pinckney in Charleston Harbor. These prisoners have
light-heartedly decorated their casemate with a sign reading: "Musical Hall, 444
Broadway." One of their number, nicknamed "Scottie," had been formerly with
Christy's minstrels, who played at 444 Broadway, New York, during the war.
According to the recollections of Sergeant Joseph F. Burke, of the Cadets, the
prisoners and their youthful guards indulged in good-natured banter about the
outcome of the war, the prisoners predicting that their friends would soon come
to the rescue—that the positions would be reversed, so that they, not the
Cadets, would be "on guard." Four terrible years elapsed before their prediction
as to the outcome of the war came true.