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The Salisbury Confederate Prison Association, Inc.
P.O. Box 5093
Salisbury, NC 28147-0088

 

    SEARCHING FOR THE CONFEDERACY IN ROWAN COUNTY

   Sites relating to the Salisbury Confederate Prison are included in the information below. “Searching for the Confederacy in Rowan County”, a pamphlet, was prepared and published February 14, 1994 by Sue J. Curtis, President of the Robert F. Hoke Chapter No. 78, United Daughters of the Confederacy®, and subsequently updated.

THE CONFEDERATE MONUMENT
(West Innes at Church Street)

   Commissioned by the Robert F. Hoke Chapter No. 78 of the United Daughters of the Confederacy® this Memorial was dedicated on May 10, 1909 to the 2,500 Confederate soldiers from Rowan County. Among those attending the dedication service, held on North Carolina’s Confederate Memorial Day, were 162 Confederate veterans and Mrs. Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson of Charlotte. This unique bronze grouping was sculpted by Frederick W. Ruckstuhl and sits atop a base of Rowan pink granite on land given to the Chapter by the City Council. There is a sister monument in Baltimore with the soldier carrying a furled flag instead of a broken gun. In 1990 the Chapter had the bronze sculptor restored so that it could be enjoyed by future generations.
 

SALISBURY CONFEDERATE PRISON
(An entrance to the stockade was located on East Bank Street beyond
 the existing railroad bridge)

   The Prison Compound of 16 acres contained an abandoned cotton factory and some houses. A wooden stockade surrounded the Prison which was in use from 1861 to 1865. The facility was designed for 2,500 prisoners but was forced to handle four times this many after the Union stopped the exchange of POW’s in August of 1864. Union General George Stoneman set fire to the Prison in April 1865 but he freed no prisoners as they had been moved two months prior to his arrival. This Prison was the only Prison burned and had the only Prison Commandant tried and found innocent of war crimes. The Salisbury Confederate Prison Symposium is sponsored annually by the Hoke Chapter for individuals interested in the history of the Prison and those who were there.
 

THE GARRISON HOUSE
(224 East Bank Street)

   This log home is located near the main entrance of the Prison and is said to have been used by the Guards.

HISTORIC SALISBURY NATIONAL CEMETERY
(202 Government Road)

   Those who died at the Salisbury Confederate Prison were taken to a site ¼ mile SW of the compound for burial. After October 1864 a mass grave system was necessary. Eighteen trenches each 240 feet long, were eventually needed for the estimated 5,000 POW’s. In 1866 Union dead from Lexington, Charlotte, Morganton and other North Carolina locations were re-interred here. The Salisbury National Cemetery was established in 1870 and contains three monuments erected to the men who died at the Salisbury Confederate Prison by the Federal Government and the states of Pennsylvania and Maine. The North Carolina Division of the United Daughters of the Confederacy® placed a marker in 1994 to help visitors locate the Prison site in relationship to the burials.
 

SALISBURY CONFEDERATE PRISON SYMPOSIUM
(P.O. Box 5093, Salisbury, NC 28147-0088)

   This three-day event, sponsored by the Robert F. Hoke Chapter No. 78, United Daughters of the Confederacy, is held annually in April. It features a Reunion of Descendants and Friendship Banquet on Friday, lectures and displays on Saturday, and memorial services on Sunday. At the first Symposium in 1998 the idea for a new organization devoted to the Salisbury Confederate Prison was born. Several members of the Robert F. Hoke Chapter worked to establish a non-profit organization for men and women who were interested in preserving the history of the prison and those who were there.
 

SALISBURY CONFEDERATE PRISON ASSOCIATION, INC.
(P.O. Box 5093, Salisbury, NC 2814-0088)

   This non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization was organized in April 1999 to preserve the history of the prison and those who were there. The group is working to establish a museum and learning center and is currently collecting diaries, military records, images, etc. related to the Prison. Membership is $10 per year and all interested individuals are invited to join. Members, when available, give tours of the Prison site and related areas. Contact the Association by phone: 704-637-6411, email: southpaws@salisbury.net, or mail: P.O. Box 5093, Salisbury, NC 28147-0088.

ROWAN COUNTY CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREAU
(204 East Innes Street)

Audiocassettes for tours of the Prison site and the Historic National Cemetery can be obtained here.
 

ROWAN PUBLIC LIBRARY
EDITH CLARK HISTORY ROOM
(201 West Fisher Street)

  This research center is housed on the third floor of the Library. The Robert F. Hoke Chapter has helped raise funds for books and microfilm on the War Between the States. One such set of books that is a great help to anyone looking for a Confederate ancestor from any state is The Roster of Confederate Soldiers 1861-1865. Among the sets of microfilm purchased by the Chapter are: the Compiled Service Records of Confederate Soldiers who Served in Organizations from the State of North Carolina; the selected rolls of the Compiled Service Records of Confederate Generals and Staff Officers and Non-Regimental Enlisted Men; the Confederate Navy and Marine Corps Records; the Reference Files Relating to Confederate Medical Officers; the Register of Confederate Soldiers, Sailors, and Citizens Who Died in Federal Prisons and Hospitals In the North, 1861-1865; the selected rolls of Case Files of applications From Former Confederates for Pardons; the Compiled Service Records of Confederate Soldiers Who Served in Organizations Raised Directly By the Confederate Government; and the North Carolina Confederate Pension Records.
 

DR. JOSEPHUS HALL HOUSE
(226 South Jackson Street)

   This home, restored and owned by the Historic Salisbury Foundation, was once the residence of one of the medical doctors at the Salisbury Confederate Prison, Dr. Josephus Hall. His application as an officer for a pardon after the War Between the States and his pardon from President Andrew Johnson hang in the upstairs hallway. The house was taken for the use of General Stoneman when he and his Raiders invaded Salisbury.
 

GOVERNOR ELLIS HOUSE
(200 South Ellis Street)

   John Willis Ellis was a practicing attorney in Salisbury. He lived with his widowed sister in the house she had built in 1850. He was elected as Governor of North Carolina in 1858 and re-elected in 1860. He refused Lincoln’s call for troops after the firing on Fort Sumter by stating that “I regard the levy of troops made by the administration for the purpose of subjugating the Sates of the South as in violation of the Constitution and a gross usurpation of power. I can be no party to this wicked violation of the laws of the country, and this war upon the liberties of a free people. troops from North Carolina.” Ellis served as Governor of North Carolina until his untimely death in 1861 at age 41.
 

OLD ENGLISH CEMETERY
(200 Block, North Church Street)

   Governor Ellis, who was originally buried in Davidson County at the family plantation, was re-interred here in April 1861 next to his wife, Mary White Ellis. There are a number of Confederate soldiers buried in this Cemetery.
 

SAINT LUKE’S EPISCOPAL CHURCH
(211 North Church Street)

   On the Church grounds formerly stood an Incense Cedar tree brought from Asia to Mrs. Julia Smyth in 1855 by Wade Hampton. Hampton later became one of South Carolina’s most famous Confederate Generals. The Church owns a silver communion set donated by Mrs. Jefferson Davis, wife of the Confederate States President.
 

OLD LUTHERAN CEMETERY
(501 North Lee Street)

   Colonel Charles F. Fisher, organizer of the Sixth Regiment NCST, was buried here after being killed at the First Battle of Manassas on July 21, 1861. Fort Fisher on the North Carolina Coast is named for him, as is the local chapter of the Children of the Confederacy. Sarah Johnston, a local resident who helped care for the sick POW’s at the Salisbury Confederate Prison, is also buried here. 175 tombstones for Confederate soldiers were installed in 1996 by the Hoke Chapter for those men who died in the local wayside and government hospitals and at the Salisbury Confederate Prison.
 

WAYSIDE HOSPITAL SITE
(Northwest corner of Lee and Council Streets)

  Established in July 1862 this hospital was supported by the local community to care for sick and wounded soldiers.
 

ROWAN MUSEUM
(202 North Main Street)

   Among the items the museum houses is memorabilia from Salisbury native Frances Fisher Tiernan (“Christian Reid”), daughter of Colonel Charles F. Fisher and author of more than 40 books, plays, short stories and poems. Her works include the Confederate play, “Under the Southern Cross”, and the poem, “Gloria Victis”, which was read at the dedication of her Hoke Chapter Confederate Monument in 1909. The Museum is located in the Old Rowan County Courthouse.
 

OLD ROWAN COUNTY COURTHOUSE
(202 North Main Street)

   Constructed in 1856 this building served as the county's legal center until 1914. Legend says the Courthouse was spared from the torch by Union General George Stoneman due to pleas by fellow Masons. The Robert F. Hoke Chapter, UDC® once held their meetings in this building.

SALISBURY ARSENAL SITE
(East Kerr Street beside railroad tracks)

   From 1863 to the end of the War the Confederate Government was using the foundry at this location for the manufacture of all types of guns, ammunition, and horseshoes.

GOVERNMENT HOSPITAL SITE
(North Long Street and Bringle Ferry Road)

   In January 1864 the Confederate Government erected fifteen buildings for hospital purposes on land donated by Archibald Henderson.

CHESTNUT HILL CEMETERY
(1134 South Main Street)

   The graves of Colonel Archibald Boyden, who served as Courier for Major General Robert F. Hoke, Captain John Andrew Ramsay, who served in Co. D, 1st Regiment North Carolina Artillery, and Dr. Josephus Hall are located here. A new marker was placed in 1992 by the Hoke Chapter for charter member Frances Fisher Tiernan (“Christian Reid”) who died March 24, 1920.

BATTLE OF GRANT’S CREEK
(West Innes Street near Catawba College)

   Union General Stoneman’s troops on their entrance into Salisbury on April 12, 1865 were met with resistance from Confederate defenders under the command of General William M. Gardner.

REV. THOMAS B. HAUGTON HOME SITE
(100 Block of East Innes Street)

   Some sources state that President Jefferson Davis spent the night of April 14, 1865 at the home of the Rector of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church on his retreat South from Richmond.

LUCIUS EUGENE POLK BIRTHPLACE
(Salisbury)

   Polk’s parents moved to Tennessee shortly after his birth on July 10, 1833. In 1861 he joined the First Arkansas Infantry Regiment of the Army of Tennessee and rose to the rank of Brigadier General.

BOYDEN HOUSE
(212-214 South Main Street)

   On April 1, 1870 General Robert E. Lee and his daughter traveled by carriage from the Salisbury Railway Depot to the Boyden House (later renamed the Empire Hotel) for breakfast. The reunion dinner for Salisbury Confederate Prison POW’s from Pennsylvania was held at this hotel in 1910 with the Governors of North Carolina and Pennsylvania in attendance.

BATTLE OF YORK HILL
(Highway 29 at Yadkin River)

   On April 13, 1865, Confederate forces under the command of Colonel J.C. Pemberton, former commander at Vicksburg, successfully defended the Yadkin River Bridge against a Union assault.
 

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