Inspection Report ~ April 11, 1864

CAMP CHASE, OHIO, April 11, 1864,

Col. W. P. RICHARDSON, Commanding Post:

I have in compliance with your order made a careful examination of Prison No. 3, Camp Chase, Ohio, and have the honor of submitting the following report:
I find the sanitary condition of the quarters, streets, and alleys good, but the sinks, situated a few feet north of the quarters, I find in a decidedly pernicious condition. They are all full, or nearly so, with one exception. This one would accommodate the present number of men two or three months. There is room for no more sinks within the inclosure. There is a large ditch running the entire length of the prison and within a few feet of one line of quarters, which is partially filled by the fluid contents of the sinks permeating the soil and settling therein. And at present, owing to the recent rains, the sinks are to some extent overflowing and the contents passing into the ditch. This offensive matter cannot be disposed of except by conducting it through a ditch running between and parallel with the officers' and company quarters the entire length of the east half of the camp. The result of which is too palpable to require comment.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Eighty-eighth Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry,
Post Surgeon

Camp Chase, Columbus, Ohio, April 14, 1864

Col. W. HOFFMAN, Commissary-General of Prisoners:

COLONEL: I have the honor to inclose you the report of Surgeon Longwell as to the condition of Prison No. 3 at this post. From this report and from my own knowledge I have no doubt about the absolute necessity of the immediate removal of this prison. The entire eastern portion of the camp in warm weather is rendered almost uninhabitable by the stench from the ditch that carries off the filth of this prison. It runs the whole length of that part of the camp between the quarters of the officers and the men, and from the nature of the ground it cannot be changed to any other direction.

This prison should be removed and reconstructed adjoining Prisons Nos. 1 and 2, where the ground will permit much more perfect drainage and will not annoy the camp by flowing out of filth, and the whole can be guarded by half the number of men now required. The expense of this removal will be trifling. I hope you will give this matter immediate attention.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Colonel Twenty-fifth Ohio Volunteers

[First indorsement]

Columbus, Ohio, April 19, 1864.

Respectfully forwarded to Colonel Hoffman. I have written two letters to the Quartermaster-General at Washington, one February 2, and the other March 21, 1864, asking a decision on the question of the removal of this camp to a place near by, selected with care, and for which estimates have been made. To these letters I have no reply. I think it of the utmost importance to move this camp at once as its location is the worst possible.

Major-General, Commanding

[Second indorsement]
Washington, D.C., April 30, 1864

Respectfully submitted to the Secretary of War. The objectionable character of the location of Camp Chase and the greater objection to the position of Prison No. 3 have several times been presented by Governor Tod, the Quartermaster-General, Major-General Heintzelman, General Mason, and Colonel Swords, assistant quartermaster-general, and there seems now to be an imperative necessity in order to preserve the health of the Federal troops that Prison No. 3 should be removed.

Colonel Third Infantry and Commissary
General of Prisoners

[Third indorsement]
By order of the Secretary of War:

Brigadier-General and Assistant Adjutant-General

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