The Elmira Prison Camp: A History of the Military Prison at Elmira, N.Y., July 6, 1864, to July 10, 1865

NY: Putnam's, 1912. Tall thick 8vo. xvii, 465 pp. Illustrated, plates, portraits. Original gilt-stamped royal blue cloth (rubbed, soiled, darkened). Offset from clippings, but a good solid copy. Item #53599

First edition. An association copy of the first order, inscribed in 1916 by famous Confederate sharpshooter Sgt. Berry Benson to Henry M. Cleckley, future author of The Three Faces of Eve and a fellow Augusta, Georgia, area resident. Chapter XIV ("Sergeant Benson's Story, Told by Himself," pp. 209-253) recounts Benson's escape from Elmira by tunnel (he had been taken prisoner at Spotsylvania). Affixed to endpapers are two photographs of Benson as an old man in his Confederate uniform and newspaper clipping tributes to him following his death in 1923. Nevins I, p. 194: "A reply to Southern complaints of mistreatment at Elmira; tries unsuccessfully to blame climate and homesickness for prisoners' suffering." For an account of Benson's Civil War exploits, see Berry Benson's Civil War Book: Memoirs of a Confederate Scout and Sharpshooter (Athens, 1962; Benson served in the 1st S.C. Infantry and in the sharpshooters battalion of McGowan's brigade).

Price: $2,250.00

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