September 2016 Artifact of the Month | POW Chess Set


By Robert Hancock
Senior Curator and Director of Collections

Lieutenant Colonel George B. Myers of the 10th Mississippi Infantry was wounded and captured at the Battle of Jonesboro, Georgia, on August 31, 1864. He was sent to Johnson’s Island Prison Camp in Ohio, a 300 acre island in Sandusky Bay on Lake Erie. This chess set was made by Myers’ messmates (those men who shared quarters and ate together), and the bottom of the chess pieces are inscribed with their names. After the war, the chess set was given to Myers, as he was the best player.



The board is not original. The pieces were donated without any accompanying board and came stored in this tobacco box seen here- Thanks, Leo Rohr, Marketing Manager


wow- i grew up on johnsons island--- the stories of the prison camp were terrible. i never heard about this chess set! i used to walk around in the woods and find cannonballs, and see the edges of the stone buildings, all that was left from long ago. it was a beautiful island, and wooded, when i grew up there.

Much more to see.

Thanks Ms. Szostek, I hope you followed the link in our entry above to view the multitude of items related to the camp. Leo Rohr, Marketing Manager

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