The Photographic History of the Civil War
                  Volume 7 -
Prisons and Hospitals

  Before He Swam To Liberty ─ Alexander and His Fellow-Captives in Fort Warren


Before He Swam To Liberty ─ Alexander and His Fellow-Captives in Fort Warren

The boyish-looking prisoner with the big buttons on the right ─ number "24" ─ is Lieutenant Joseph W. Alexander, who was captured at Savannah when the iron steamer "Atlanta" was taken on June 17, 1863, and sent to the stronghold near Boston. This slender youth squeezed himself through a loophole a little over eight inches wide, and succeeded in swimming to a small island, after a narrow escape from recapture. Three of his friends and two sailors accompanied him. Before he left the shore with Lieutenant Thurston two sentinels came along. One thought that he saw something lying in the water, and extended his gun till the point of his bayonet rested upon Thurston's chest. The latter lay still, and the sentinel concluded it was a log. Lieutenants Alexander and Thurston escaped in a fishing-smack, but were recaptured and sent back to Fort Warren after a short confinement in Portland. The other captives in this photograph, as numbered are: 16, Pilot Fleetwood; 17, Master-mate N. MeBlair, both of the "Atlanta"; 18, Reid Saunders, C. S. A.; 19, Lieutenant A. Bobot; 20, Pilot Austin, both of the "Atlanta"; 21, Lieutenant C. W. Read, of the privateer “Tacony"; 22, Samuel Sterritt, C. S. A.; 23, Midshipman Williamson, and 25, Commander W. A. Webb, both of the "Atlanta."

page 139  in 1911 book

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This online edition of The Photographic History of the Civil War includes improved images using digital images from the Library of Congress, when available. It also includes additional images that are either cropped from the Library of Congress digital images or are related to the specific topic being discussed in the article or page.

Volume 7 of the History is the first volume I'm publishing online simply because it was the one I was interested in when I decided to publish.

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Copyright © 2004 Michael P. Goad  All rights reserved.