What is a temporary shelter for soldiers?

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juneamy007 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

By the autumn of 1862, the Civil War is becoming more organized.  The Confederate soldiers have advanced toward the Mississippi River, but control only a small piece of it.  Then news arrives that the Union soldiers are faltering.  The soldiers of the Confederacy are advancing onward to north Kentucky.

The Union army, led by McClellan, is becoming disorganized and ineffective. The morality of the soldiers is starting to sink.  The very allegiance to the President is faltering.  The allure of desertion rears its head.  News of the devastating losses at Fredericksburg and Stones River, where tens of thousands of Union soldiers were slaughtered, sends deserters running. They head for Illinois.

Point Prospect serves as their new campground.  Many of the soldiers are still armed, and are able to hold their ground through the first quarter of 1863. These men are the remnants of war. Their survival instincts are on high alert. They have no conscience to prevent them from stealing food and supplies. They war among themselves and have no deterrent to prevent them from harming, or even killing others.  Even officials from the Federal Registrar, whose duty is to find deserters, refuse to go to Point Prospect.

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Across Five Aprils

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