Andersonville, or Camp Sumter as it was officially known, was one of the largest of many Confederate military prisons established during the Civil War. It was built early in 1864 after Confederate officials decided to move the large number of Federal prisoners kept in and around Richmond, Virginia, to a place of greater security and a more abundant food supply.
During the 14 months the prison existed, more than 45,000 Union soldiers were confined here. Of these, almost 13,000 died from disease, poor sanitation, malnutrition, overcrowding, or exposure to the elements.
Today, Andersonville National Historic Site is the only park in the National Park System to serve as a memorial to all American prisoners of war throughout the nation's history. The 515-acre park consists of the historic prison site and the National Cemetery.
In 1998 the National Prisoner of War Museum opened at Andersonville, dedicated to the men and women of this country who have suffered captivity. Their story is one of sacrifice and courage.
Visitors can begin their visit in the National
Prisoner of War Museum. A short audio-visual program provides an orientation to the overall prisoner of war story. Walking and/or driving through the National Cemetery and prison site are recommended. A picnic area is located within the park.
Interpretive Programs are presented at the historic prison site daily. Additional information can be obtained at the National Prisoner of War Museum information desk.
Andersonville National Historic Site is located 10 miles north of Americus, Georgia on GA Route 49.