“Hellmira”: The Union’s Most Infamous Civil War Prison Camp
October 12 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Long called by some the “Andersonville of the North,” the prisoner of war camp in Elmira, New York, is remembered as the most notorious of all Union-run POW camps. It existed only from the summer of 1864 to July 1865, but in that time, and for long after, it became darkly emblematic of man’s inhumanity to man. Confederate prisoners called it “Hellmira.”
Join Derek Maxfield on October 12th in Appomattox as he contextualizes the rise of prison camps during the Civil War, explores the failed exchange of prisoners, and tells the tale of the creation and evolution of the prison camp in Elmira. Maxfield suggests that it is time to move on from the blame game and see prisoner-of-war camps—North and South—as a great humanitarian failure.
Derek Maxfield is an associate professor of history at Genesee Community College in Batavia, New York. Author of Hellmira: The Union’s Most Infamous Civil War Prison Camp – Elmira, NY, Maxfield has written for Emerging Civil War since 2015. In 2019 he was honored with the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching and in 2013 he was awarded the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Creative Activities.
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