Archaeology Magazine

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Camp Asylum Excavation Continues in South Carolina

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Camp-Asylym-H0le COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA—Rescue excavations continue at the site of “Camp Asylum,” a Civil War prisoner of war camp for 1,250 Union officers located in what was an exercise yard for patients at the state’s mental health asylum. Archaeologist Chester DePratter of the University of South Carolina has brought in machinery to look for shebangs—the holes that the officers dug in the ground for shelter during the winter of 1864. “We didn’t want to leave important features in the ground if we could get them using machinery judiciously,” he told WFAE. Combs, buttons, and lead seals from bales of cotton have also been found. The site will be handed over to developers at the end of April.