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Andersonville Diary

4.16 of 5 stars 4.16  ·  rating details  ·  138 ratings  ·  19 reviews
John Ransom was a 20-year-old Union soldier when he became a prisoner of war in 1863. In his unforgettable diary, Ransom reveals the true story of his day-to-day struggle in the worst of Confederate prison camps--where hundreds of prisoners died daily. Ransom's story of survival is, according to Publishers Weekly, "a great adventure . . . observant, eloquent, and moving."
Paperback, 281 pages
Published May 1st 1994 by Berkley
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Community Reviews

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William Beesley
I wish this guy was still alive and had an email address so I could invite him over for dinner. He was in the 7th circle of harpy infested Hell suffering starvation, and scurvy which was slowly killing him but he wasn't going to complain about it. Throughout the whole drudgery he maintained a pragmatic peppy attitude and his advice to himself should he escape death and get out of Andersonville prison was to join the Masons and then buy and wear silk underwear. How cool is that.

His journal tends
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Judy Vasseur
Mar 17, 2009 Judy Vasseur rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Judy by: Rex
History in your face. I was surprised to find John Ransom’s writing so contemporary—as if a friend or co-worker had written me an Email that took over one hundred years to arrive. Lincoln reported dead in the newspapers a year too soon! Spin doctors have been around awhile.

One year in the Life of John Ransom. I’m struck by the similarities between John Ransom and the Russian writer Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, author of One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, The Gulag Archipelago and many other fin
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Carl Brush
God knows why this story never wears out for me, this Civil War narrative. Just when I think I’m done with it, something else comes along. Now I’m in the middle of Shelby Foote’s massive (2400+ pages) The Civil War trilogy, and as a break read this little diary. At least I was given leave not to re-read the MacKinley Kantor novel of lo these many years ago. This is quite enough.
It’s as upbeat as an account of a man over a year in captivity under the harshest imaginable conditions, nearly starve
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Jan C
I think he starts out at Libby Prison or one of the prisons in that area of Virginia and gets transferred to Andersonville. Although he could have been one of the Libby escapees who were later recaught. Many of them were.

But his time at Andersonville is harrowing. They try to keep some semblance of humanity and civilization but it gets very difficult toward the end. Eventually he gets so wasted that while others are put on a train to somewhere, he gets put in a hospital. He knows the Yankees are
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Jason Forys
An incredible Civil War story. If you have any interest in this historical time period, I highly recommend.
Denise
I would not recommend the audio version of this book.

Diary of a young man who is spends a year in Andersonville Prison during the Civil War. The diary is written by a 20 year old man, but narrator sounds like he's 80. It didn't work.

Also - the writing isn't very compelling, in spite of the grim circumstances that he was in. It was disappointing

Eddie Marceau
I enjoyed this a lot although I have read historians said Ransom's account is fictionalized in parts. Either way it is a good read.
Zana
I listened to the book on audio and I really liked it....however, the reader was a much older man which made it hard to believe the writer was only twenty. Also, I wanted to hear more about Andersonville; that was the reason I read the book....good book, wonderful, but not quite what I was looking for.
Read1000books
Although there is disagreement as to whether Ransom was actually at Andersonville, the details here seem to ring true. Either he WAS there or got his information from someone who was; in either case this is a riveting account of being in the South's most notorious Civil War prison camp.
Steve Davis
An intimate yet clinical look into the Civil War horrors at Andersonville prison and Southern life during those times. It's hard to imagine these conditions or the cruelty inflicted. It also highlights the harsh complexities of the political decisions that led to these events.
Jim
Aug 01, 2011 Jim added it
John Ransom was a soldier in the 9th Michigan Cavalry. He was captured in East Tennessee in the fall of 1863. His diary is a classic that is quoted often by historians who want to describe life in Andersonville prison.
Fredrick Danysh
Andersonville was a hell hole as a prisoner of war camp in Georgia during the Civil War. John Ransom survived but many did not. The commandant was tried for war crimes at the conclusion of the war.
Karyn
Very interesting account of life in Confederate prisons during the Civil War. It's incredible that this young man's journal is still around and reads so easily 140+ years later.

Boris
Ransom's description of conditions at Confederate States of America's Andersonville Prison in 1864 is eerily reminiscent of descriptions of conditions in Nazi concentration camps in WWII.
Sharon
I enjoy history of the Civil War so I found this book very interesting. It is presented in diary form, so at times it is difficult to follow his thinking.
Cindy
What a wonderful opportunity to read the actual experiences of a 20 year old soldier during the Civil War.
Rex
If you toss a riveting (true) tale to a history buff like me you have, well, five stars!
Strawfoot
Outstanding account of being a POW in several dreaded Confederate camps.
Jacqueline
Had to go see it in person....
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John Ransom's Andersonville Diary John Ransom's Andersonville Diary: Life Inside the Civil War's Most Infamous Prison John Ransom's Diary: Andersonville John Ransom's Diary Andersonville Diary, Escape, and List of the Dead: With Name, Co., Regiment, Date of Death and No. of Grave in Cemetery

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