Echos of Andersonville

I live near Andersonville Georgia. Andersonville is full of echos, in the prison and in the cemetery you can hear echos. The echos of 45,000 prisoners who were at Andersonville from February 1864 until July 1865 are loud if you listen closely. At the train terminal in town you can hear echos of the feet of the prisoners leaving the train and marching the short march to the prison, you just have to listen. Listen for the echos of the fearful, mostly men but a few women sharing rumors of the most feared prison in the south.

 Inside the walls of the prison the echos of the newly arrived and those who are there to greet them are all around us. Listen to the echos of the prisoners bartering, bargaining, cheating and arguing, the echos are there if you just listen. Deeper in the prison up the hill around the shebangs, listen for the echos of the prisoners trying to keep body and soul together. Listen to the echos of the moans and groans from prisoners being attacked, getting sick, starving to death, and being eaten by insects.

 Listen to the echos everywhere in the prison of the 13,750 prisoners mostly men but at least two women dying. You can hear their feverish cries, unwillingly sharing their agony with the rest of the prison. As you listen to the horrifying echos of the nearly dead, listen as well to the echos of other prisoners stealing even the clothing from these brave people. Listen to the echos of one of the prisoners who made a list of every prisoner who died at Andersonville. Listen to the echo of his struggle to smuggle the list to a lady named Clara Barton. Listen to the echos of Clara fighting for heroes who could no longer fight for themselves, who put her life on the line to fight an unreasonable federal bureaucracy to make sure these brave men and women were never forgotten.

 Walk outside the walls of the prison and down the road a spell to the National Cemetery. Listen to the echos of heroes, brave men and women who willingly gave their own lives for the sake of others. Listen to the echos of men too young to be dead, be put to rest. Listen to the echos of sacrifice willingly given and listen to the echos of love for family and country. As you listen to the echos of the sacrifices all around you, you realize these echos are like the notes of a beautiful symphony,  of selflessness and love. While you listen to these echos listen for the echos of peace from at least one representative of every war our country has been involved in, who are resting in this beautiful cemetery. The echos are of those who gave the best that they had and could not give more but would have if they could have, notice how it adds to the symphony. Stay a while longer and listen to the echos of tears falling, listen for the echos of fathers, mothers, sons, daughters and wives' hearts break as they say their last goodbyes. Listen to the echos of children asking when Daddy is coming back. If you listen hard enough you can understand that this too is what war is all about, that sacrifices are not just made by those who give their lives but are made by those who are left behind.

When you walk out of the cemetery you understand that you never want to forget the echos of Andersonville Georgia, the echos that remind us that wars should be fought only as a last resort. 

lindsay   lindsay wrote
on 10/27/2008 10:15:52 PM
Very good. I like the 2nd person approach.

Short Story
writing Georgiakevin
We are in the midst of heroes we just have to look for them.
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One of the worst southern Civil War prisons called Andersonville, and the imprints of those who who died and are resting there.