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Records relating to American prisoners of war, 1812-1815, from the Public Record Office, London

Manuscript/Manuscript on Film
English
Wakefield, England : EP Microform Limited, c1981
11 microfilm reels ; 35 mm.

Notes

Microfilm of original records in the Public Record Office, London, England.

"The General Entry Book records for Americans appear to be complete with few exceptions. Although some of the prison ship General Entry Books are missing from Chatham, Portsmouth and Plymouth, the main General Entry Books for those locations have survived and contain the names and other information for prisoners held at those locations, apparently including those on the prison ships"--Provenance.

"There is a gap in the Plymouth records from May 1814 to January 1815. However, the Dartmoor General Entry Books appear to be complete and nearly all prisoners received in Plymouth by 1814 were sent on to Dartmoor"--Provenance.

"The General Entry Book for Prisoners on parole at Ashburton, Devon, is also missing but most men paroled there were initially recorded at Plymouth or Dartmoor"--Provenance.

The format of the General Entry Book calls for two facing pages in a large oblong folio book, with nine names on a page in lines across the page and 13 items of data (in columns) after each name. Some of the items of information in the columns were: current number, name of ship, date, place of capture, type of ship captured in, prisoner's name, rank of prisoner, date prisoner was received at detention facility, place of birth, age, size, body build of prisoner, shape of prisoner's face and complexion, color of hair and eyes, marks or wounds, and supplies the prisoner had or was issued.

"In the War of 1812-15 about 8 per cent of the total of the seafaring manpower of the United States - roughly 7500 Navy and private seamen-were held as prisoners for at least part of the war. In addition, roughly 1000 U.S. Army or militia personnel were captured and held prisoner"--Provenance.

"The records relating to Americans taken prisoner by British forces during the War of 1812-15 form a portion of the Admiralty records in the Public Record Office. The largest volume of material is classified under 'Medical Departments: Registers' and consists of the 'General Entry Books for American Prisoners of War' for the various prison ships and depots at home and overseas. These General Entry Books are part of the ADM 103 series and the volumes relating to American prisoners comprise 44 volumes out of the total series of 648 (most of which relate to French prisoners held during 1793-1815 although the series extends from 1755 to 1831)"--Provenance.

"These records were generated in the course of the administrative process of receiving, clothing, housing and feeding prisoners of war, then keeping track of them as they passed through the prison ship and depot system until they were finally discharged, exchanged or released (or in some cases, until they died while prisoners)"--Provenance.

Subjects

Library of Congress Subjects

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