This week in the Civil War for December 9, 1862
Wreaths cross America - Alton Confederate Cemetery

Wreaths Across America - Smallpox Island


Smallpox Island no longer exists. During the Civil War it was used to quarantine victims of smallpox from the Prison at Alton, Illinois. After the war it's grim purpose was forgotten.

In the early 1930's the Army Corp of Engineers began to dredge the island in preparation for the construction of the first lock and dam. 

Every shovel full of muck revealed skeletons. The island was eventually removed.

A monument to all those who died there was erected on a man made peninsula on the western bank of the Mississippi River.

As part of the national Wreaths Across American project, members of the George E. Dixon Camp #1962, Sons of Confederate Veterans, laid wreaths at the monument. Saturday, December 15, 2012.

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